“You have to keep breaking your heart until it opens.” ~Rumi
I saw this quote today and instantly felt as if it had slapped me right across the face. Heartache has become one of my greatest fears, as well as one of my greatest inspirations. I’ve been walking the line between wanting to live in solitude and wanting to be loved. In other words, I don’t have the capacity for another heartbreak in my life, so I avoid love like a child avoids the monster under their bed. I hide under the covers. But while I am under those covers, I sometimes wish someone was in there with me, but only sometimes. I have soaked myself so deeply into solitude, that I fear I won’t ever be able to leave it.  

But this quote isn’t about relationships with anyone else. That quote is about the relationship with the self. Rumi is advising us to break our own heart, repeatedly, until it opens. He’s encouraging vulnerability, to the point where it doesn’t sting anymore. He is challenging us to cut directly to the bone of our heartache infested selves, and then to pull out of ourselves our most terrifying ideas about who we couldn’t be. And then we must fall in love with those short comings.
When a relationship ends, and you blame the other person for everything, the opportunity for growth is unavailable. Growth comes from understanding that it all comes back to yourself. From the moment we seek out a relationship, the responsibility for choosing the other person falls solely on us. If you end up in a relationship with a complete psychopath, that sucks. But you chose that psychopath because there’s something inside of you that needed that psychopath. And you have to keep digging at that little something until you finally understand it. Only then will you be able to grow, and trust, and finally open your own heart.  
I believe that opposites attract because there is an opportunity for growth in every disagreement. We learn about ourselves through experiencing other perspectives from the people around us. We manifest our own lessons. And the only way to stop getting lessons is to test out of them, to rise above them, to annihilate them. Relationships are designed to teach us about ourselves. They are an experience to be had, to be thankful for. They were never intended to hold you forever.  



I keep repeating myself, that I will not fall in love again. My friends keep rolling their eyes, telling me that I just need to heal and then I will change my mind.  

Nope. Not happening. 

It’s not that I’m afraid of being hurt again. I have always been an optimist about love. I am down right gifted at getting over a heartache. Getting hurt doesn’t scare me at all.  

There are two reasons why I won’t allow myself to love again.  

The first is my daughters. I still feel guilty for letting them down with the last guy. I fucked up. I made a huge mistake. I changed their lives by moving them out to the prairie. And then deciding to stay here so we don’t have to change schools again. And I will admit that we are doing just fine right now. I came out of a shitty situation, smelling like a rose. I got lucky. We found a cute little place to live. My girls are in an excellent school district. We’ve all made some really amazing new friends.  I’m 8 weeks out from being a certified massage therapist.  That old dream wouldn’t be in my grasp had I not moved here.  Good things came from this big mistake.
But those positives don’t cancel out the big fat negatives. My kids had to move….again. They had to live with some guy their mom fell in love with. They had to deal with his tantrums. They had to deal with my depression about it. They have to finish up childhood with the stigma of a single parent household, along with the financial hardship.  They didn’t ask for any of this. They were just born into a broken home, with a mom who throws her heart at people who don’t deserve it. I won’t do this to them again. I can’t.  It’s not even a possibility.

The second reason is that I don’t trust myself anymore. I have a really hard time holding on to myself when I’m in love. There’s some sort of instinct in me, I can’t help it. When I’m in love, I wrap my entire life around the person of my affection. I feel that real love is accepting the other person exactly as they are. So I accept the good, the bad, and the bull shit until I can’t take it anymore.  I have accepted rage.  I have accepted constant criticism.  I have accepted being bullied and belittled.  I have accepted so much more than any one person should.
My skin has grown very thin. I don’t have it in me to be anyone’s emotional punching bag anymore. I have never experienced love that didn’t feel that way to me.  And I don’t trust myself to maintain my boundaries once my heart is set on love.  So, it’s best for me to just leave that part of my life behind.  

Does it hurt a little to know that I won’t get to share my life with anyone? Absolutely. I’m currently grieving that idea as I type this out in an attempt to somehow find some peace about it. But this is the way my life is unfolding. And I’m trying really hard to accept it. Now if I could just get my friends to understand…. If I could just get my heart to understand.  

Soft Parade and the Staves

Have you ever wondered why recently single people always drop a lot of weight right after the break up? It’s not the reason you think. It’s not because they are so depressed they just can’t eat. It’s not because they are so stressed out they can’t keep the weight on. It’s because when you shed the heaviness of another person’s bullshit, you fucking feel like dancing…all the time.

I just put my kids in bed, smoked a bowl, and turned all the lights off in my living room. I then helped myself to a cold bottle of Soft Parade, from Shorts brewery. And now I am dancing to Spotify’s “Top tracks from 2016,” a playlist they so graciously created just for me. What a great idea. I can’t wait to listen to that playlist in ten years, like a soundtrack of the most difficult year I’ve ever experienced. I’m not going to lie, this soundtrack is like therapy right now. Music, pot, and a bottle of beer that tastes like strawberries making love in my mouth, I am content in every possible way.  I suppose most people would climb above their high horse and shame me for being so irresponsible. Society tends to look down on catching a night cap, especially for a single mom.  I can imagine most people would think of me as a trashy person because I like to get high. I’m probably even spending my child support on drugs. I’m not, really. I just imagine that people would think that about me.  Mom’s are always held to a higher standard than most.  But guess what?  We’re human.  The only women I know who actually try to keep up with that ridiculous image of plastered perfection are the most insane people I’ve ever met.  And I have met some very insane people.

That Mom that you see at the school, with perfect hair and her shit all together, strapping her little soccer stars into the back of her mint condition Escalade… That woman is made of plastic, inside and out.  She only appears to have her shit together, much like a piece of plastic fruit appears to look edible.  I will take a stoner mom friend any day over those perfection Barbie wannabes.  Fuck those bitches.  A friend of the devil is a friend of mine.

Here’s what I think about me…I think I wake up every morning, alone in the dark, cold Michigan winter. I think I throw some clothes together, usually running out the door with a light on or I forgot to take the trash out, so now it’s piled up for another week. I usually brush my teeth at work, because I can’t afford to be late again. I think that I am that girl who is non stop worrying about the bills and the social life that I don’t have, and my homework, and the sex I’m not having, and what’s for dinner, and did I mess up at work, and how are my girls doing with life, emotionally? Because if they aren’t 100% perfect, it’s 100% my fault. Karma, I guess. My life is a hurricane right now. I don’t see that changing any time soon. But I choose to take care of myself through this endless storm. I choose to get high and have a beer and dance by myself in the dark.

Honestly, I think my girls are doing really well. And I think we’re knocking this single parent family thing out of the park. My children are thriving in life. You want to know why? It’s because I fucking tuck my kids in every night, and then I let it all go. I forgive myself for being imperfect and a little irresponsible. And I release all of the tension in my shoulders. And I dance to music that I don’t have to argue with anyone about. And I feel beautiful, because when I am high, everything looks beautiful, even my reflection. Stress falls away and I feel happy. And I feel confident that I can not only survive this lifestyle, but I can thrive on it. And because I allow myself to unwind at night, I’m able to wake up the next morning, feeling calm and content with a smile on my face. I’m a better mom because I get high. I don’t smoke pot every day. I don’t get high around my kids.  And I usually only have a couple beers a week.  But when it’s just me and the moon and a collection of my favorite songs, I wallow in the sweet solitude that has draped over my life.  Instead of feeling smothered by it, I feel swaddled in the comfort of it. And I don’t care what the law says, or what society has to say, or even what you might be thinking. I feel good. And I know that I’m doing better at succeeding in life because of my choices.  

Society has been shaming stoners for a long while, now. And then they gaslight us by saying we self medicate, that we are just catching a buzz in an attempt to relieve our depression symptoms. You know what I think about that? I think, yes! We are self medicating! And it’s fucking working! I have not been this happy to dance alone in my living room since the last time I was single and high. 

 Do you know anyone who has ever quit taking antidepressants? Me neither, because they are designed that way. 

 Tomorrow, however, is going to be another great day. I might get high. I might not. But I will wake up feeling satisfied with my life, and filled with gratitude for these precious moments I have to myself.  
You can enjoy my Spotify soundtrack here: