Redefining our Paradigms

April 25, 2015

The Dream, Pablo Picasso 1932

Lately, I have felt like the lady in this Picasso painting- half dressed, boob hanging out, maybe napping, arms disproportionately large in relation to the rest of her body. Crazy outfit.  Most days, I've felt like my head was splitting open and like my brain is numb and not working, which leads me to the question:

How do we redefine the paradigms of our lives?

  1. 1.
    a typical example or pattern of something; a model.
    "there is a new paradigm for public art in this country"
    "why should your sets of values be the paradigm for the rest of us?"

How do we respond when our paradigms are redefined for us by someone else? Without our permission? Against our will?  What do we do when people walk out of our lives unexpectedly or we have to walk out of theirs because we can no longer tolerate their behaviour and it changes the course of the life we had planned?  

Lately, I have been facing these issues in my own life. Someone whom I love dearly has made choices that I disagree with - to the point that I spent almost a year heartbroken over those choices knowing that there was nothing that I could do to change her mind.  I grieve for her choices, and selfishly, I grieve for my own loss because I am no longer a part of her life and the traditions that we worked to create together.  I am fairly liberal, but there are some places I draw the line.

This person was part of my paradigm, my template for my life, why I woke up many mornings and worked so hard. She defined who I am in so many ways- good and bad- my failures as a human being, a member of the human family, and my own family.  I have questioned my own behaviour as well as hers, and have come to terms that there are certain things in life that I don't have to accept and that no one can legislate my feelings.  However, all choices come with costs.  My cost has been my disconnection with someone I love more than anything in the world, and a change in how the rest of my life will be different than I imagined.  Some days I feel like I have lost a limb, or like part of my soul is missing. My heart, is shattered.

That doesn't mean that I don't wish her happiness, because I do.  I hope she finds her life's joy and is fulfilled and her dreams come true.  However, wishing her love and success doesn't mean that I have to be a part of those dreams if they go against the basic zeniths of my core beliefs. I don't have to condone her decisions or participate in them and continue to be abused in order to love her.  I've had enough abuse in my life and I have had to draw a line to protect my own sanity.  If you have to constantly bow down to someone and constantly give without receiving anything in return, that isn't love- as a matter of fact, it is the furthest thing from love.

I'm redefining my life.  My holidays are different now, and they will be forever more.  I take each day at a time, and instead of looking at what I have lost, I am trying to focus on my many blessings and the family that I have chosen and that has chosen me.

I've had friends have husbands leave them unexpectedly, without any idea it was going to happen. So many of my friends had to redefine their careers after 2008, and our veterans come home every day to a new world that they never imagined having to live in- some without sight, hearing, or limbs.

We all have struggles and everyone has a crossroads where we have to shift our paradigms.  I hope that when you hit that place in life, whatever your paradigm shift may be, and there will be at least one in your life if you live long enough, that you are surrounded with people who love and support you.  I hope that you have friend you can call when you bawl your eyes out at two in the morning.  I have those kind of friends and I am blessed beyond measure.

I have had to learn a lot of lessons in Faith and this is part of my journey.  I've had to learn that I can't control other people or their actions and that I can only be responsible for myself.  I am not the caretaker to the world.  Grown people make their own choices and they have to live with the consequences of those actions- all of us do.

I am having to put my trust in a higher power (for me that is God) to work out things that are beyond my control and to watch over the people I love when I cannot be there to protect them.  Every day, I pray a little more. Every day,  I find more peace and I heap blessings upon the person I've lost.

Wishing you faith and love on your journey.

Love y'all,

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