Saturday, February 13, 2016

Rosiesandz Guest post: Understanding and Harnessing The Void... by Jayson Sanderson

My son...

Jayson Sanderson
Kloman C - American Literature

Jayson Tyler Lukengu Sanderson…
A seed planted deep within the soil,
Watered and Nourished by Family, Education, and Principle.
What a way to be remembered isn’t,
What a way for your legacy to start and blossom and thrive into the being you dreamed of being.
Optimistic, maybe… but should you be thinking any other way.
Is there any other way to look upon yourself as you move towards the future?
To look in the mirror, and not see the sexiest being alive.
Optimistic, maybe… but there is no other way to look at yourself and expect progress.
Big dreams lead to goals then plans then work then fantasy will never feel so real.
Jayson has big dreams.
However they're constantly replaced with projects, papers, assignments, as if they purposefully want to keep you within the system.
Purposefully want those dreams to remain dreams.
Claiming to help you reach those dreams by following their plan for your life so you can play a part in their growth as a unit rather than your growth as an individual.
Ironic isn’t it…
Ironic isn’t that those big name, athletes, singers, dancers, entrepreneurs, etc., took a chance on their dream and became something of legend.
Ironic isn’t it that they don’t want us to dropout of school or turn so much attention away from our occupation that our dreams become a stupid idea until we’re too old to realize it was more a possibility than a fantasy.
Oh, the irony is too tantalizing.
I am the one and only Jayson Sanderson.
And they surely don’t make ‘em like me anymore.

There is a recurring image whenever I think of who exactly I am at this present moment,
An endless space, speckled with dots as far as the eye can see.
That void is my unknown, my identity, my essence.
It gives me direction telling me where I should put my attention,
It gives questions and puzzles to unlock the next part of myself.
Each day passes and another dot appears, another aspect of myself is found.
However the with each dot, darkness disappears, and there are less possibilities in terms of who I'll be in the near future.
A feeling as sweet as candy, but you'd never take into account the after taste when you chose that candy.

"That darkness, it needs guidance...
My unknown, needs guidance...
However in order to guide I must know the destination.
I want to live simply.
I want to sit by the window when it rains and read books I’ll never be tested on.
I want to write because I want to, not because I’ve got something to prove.
I want to listen to my body, fall asleep when the moon is high and wake up slowly, with no place to rush off to.
I want not to be governed by money or clocks or any of the artificial restraints that humanity imposes on itself.
I just want to be boundless, endless, and infinite"... ~Author Unknown

I will be limitless and tremendous.
It's a celebration, alright.
And my present is only the beginning.

Teacher grade and comment:
Never one short of self-esteem, you wonderfully walk the reader through the wonder of who you are, what you dream, and the tribulations along the way.  There is a general abstraction in your word play and word choice that connects with a reader and compels a reader to join in your thinking!  


Sunday, February 7, 2016

Marriage Is a Movement… 19 things…lessons I’ve learned over my 19 years of marriage

I love being married. It’s so great to find that one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life.
~Rita Rudner

In exactly a week, The Hubby and I will reach 19 years of marriage. What a celebration! I can't sometimes help but to think for us 19 years=21 years for the 2 years we lived together before tying the knot. I’ve forgone the prior 4 years of dating but the 2 years we lived together do count when looking at our relation’s journey. After all, strides and setbacks don’t start when you say ‘I Do”. I've also always said that I’m an advocate of living together before getting married, because if you don’t, the things you are going to find out after the he “cantdonothingwrongyears” will make you feel like you married the devil’s brother or got tricked into a bad joke!  IJS…
I’ve also stated before (and today it still stands true) how amazed I am of how long we’ve been together and what we've accomplished… Not a day is taken for granted. I mean, it took and still takes lots of patience, sprinkled with God’s grace to deal with my husband’s habits (and peculiar behavior at times), especially since the dust of lust has settled, the honeymoon years are WAY back there in our past, and cupid has taken back his arrow to find brand new lovers.
4 years ago in one of my post I said “No one will ever hear me brag about having the perfect marriage, the perfect man or that I’m the perfect wife. You will hear me brag about the fact that I have learned, worked and grown within our relationship and we are where we are because we’ve committed to making it work. Really, I look over my shoulder and re-live our history and I’m amazed by the good, the bad, the irreplaceable, the joyous, the sad, the scary, the milestones, the accomplishments, the deceptions, the rewards, the losses and the blessings we’ve accumulated over the years.”*I've Been Wowed...

And today our relation still stands true to that statement. Our 19 year journey has been the most humbling, selfless experience and one of the greatest sources of lessons learned in my life. Irreplaceable lessons which again were/are generated from joys, pains, sacrifices, blessings and pleasures.

As I reflect on our years together and the learning experience it has been, I decided to tackle, for the 2nd time, the hard task of narrowing down and picking 19 of those lessons which sticks out the most for me

So here it goes…. (In no particular order)

1.      Brace yourself this ride is NOT for wussies and quitters… There should never be an instance or time where you are left alone to navigate through this journey. For better or worse is what you sign up for and it is what you will go through ...together! BUT remember (if/before/when you ever feel like throwing the towel) getting through the "worse" will make your "better" the sweetest victory. We say for richer and poorer, through good times and bad times but should we also say through growth and changes? And welcome the hard learned, earned lessons and the sweetest, tender, gentle moments…

2.      This may come as a shock to many but NO one is perfect… Don’t elevate your spouse to a pedestal. Although they will try to live up to it, you will be the one on the disappointing end when they fail. Be realistic with your expectations. We are just human with shortfalls, flaws and we all make mistakes. I've learned one thing which is that I am part of a common pool. I am a mortal not absolute to faults. I had to learn to swallow my pride and admit my wrongs if I expected The Hubby to do the same.

3.      Be open-minded, it’s so much more than now… Any giving day you should be ready to wake up, deal with and learn something new about your partner. You started your relationship loving all the same things (or being so smitten that you were okay pretending you loved the same things). Then it was pretty clear who was the dominant person in your relation. Going through a marriage is like starting a new job and having to “learn on the job.” You are thrown in it with a bunch of ideology but until you are in it you don’t really know what the future holds. Be open-minded, don’t get overwhelmed by the changes, tomorrow can only unveil an even more evolved couple, if you are in it to succeed. It is safe to say that we have learned so much from each other, our differences allowed us to balance, set the scales to our advantage.  “A great marriage is not when the 'perfect couple' comes together. It is when an imperfect couple learns to enjoy their differences” ~Dave Meurer  

4.      I will never say this enough… PICK YOUR BATTLES WISELY!!! The difference between Love and War is that in Love you have to fight fair… You will disagree, you will fight, you will feel like grabbing a pot of boiling hot water and turn it upside down above their head so it could clean out all differing thoughts from their brain BUT can you imagine if you had to do that every time???... Save that energy… those socks thrown on the floor as if they are invisible are not worth your time and energy. So indeed…Pick wisely because disagreements WILL happen.” The question is, do you go into it with a spirit of looking for resolution or do you go into it with a spirit of getting even, vengeance, control? You’ll never win if you do that. If you make your relationship a competition that means your spouse has to lose in order for you to win. It’s not a competition, it’s a partnership.” ~Dr. Phil

5.      You alone must make you happy… If you're not happy with yourself, you'll never be happy in any situation. It starts with you and really ends there too… You really can't rely on someone else to make you happy; a wakeup call from making that mistake will be the hardest reality check of them all. Ultimately you want to find a partner that would fit into your life goals and that… THAT would be the crowning achievement in your relationship. That would be the best reward.

6.      Enjoy the moments… Responsibilities will start increasing, goals will get bigger, and stress will take over but remember how, why and where you started and how happy you were. Press “pause” and create peaceful moments, enjoy the little things that mean the most. You don’t want to achieve your goals and let go of everything that matters along the way

7.      Protect your relationship… Do whatever it takes. Make that your commitment, not just to your partner but to your relationship. No one can or should do the work for you. Privacy goes a long way: All intention and attention might be good but not needed.  Before you get to the point where you thing you need someone else to intervenes, someone like a family member, a good friend, a man of God or even a counselor make sure together you’ve done the work. There is no one other than the both of you that should know and understand the other and why you are at the place you now stand. Make your home a shelter, your solution ground, the place where all is transparent, genuine. There is no room for ego tripping in your “Storm Shelter”. Be each other number 1 cheerleader; don’t let anyone else stroke their ego more than you; validation that matters and has any substance needs to come from you!

8.      The company you keep… Don’t let negativity into your circle. While meeting new people, establishing new relation and navigating through existing ones, remember the simple goal is to find and associate yourself with people so good that friendship and family becomes a blur…

9.      Kids are a game changer in any relations… Be on a winning side! All I am saying is “don’t fall asleep on them rascals” because next thing you know they have taken over! Don’t get me wrong, I love my babies more than anything on this earth. That being said, nothing has ever been the same in our marriage after baby #1 came along. Discuss any issues that arise when they arise. Remember it’s the 2 of you on them and no other way. You're dog-tired and being pulled so many different ways, your focus starts to switch slowly but surely and all of a sudden that balance (between the attention your hubby needs and what the kids need) you promised yourself to always maintain has completely leaned over toward the kids. Having kids will put your marriage through a rollercoaster. It's the toughest but most rewarding responsibilities I've taken upon and to do it with him is definitely icing on my cake so make sure that scale always rests heavier on the winning side…Your Partner!

10.  Arguing without a point is…pointless! Learn to let go. Sometimes talking things thru is not the thing to do. Remember there is always that other solution which is “We will agree to disagree”…

11.  Make It (SEX) a Priority… I really shouldn’t have to elaborate on this because in my book SEX is the most important component in a happy relation. With that being said… J It is one of my struggles as far as maintaining it readily available for the hubby. There are so many times where it’s plainly the last thing I'd be interested in as I go back to all of the reasons why I am exhausted, busy and a list of excuses we come up with... but connecting on that level is essential to everything else. He is good at reminding me and I enjoy being reminded…

12.  Best Friend and confident… Marriage is knowing someone has your back. Always. And you have theirs. It's about interdependence. Marriage is thinking about the other one not being there anymore and not being able to grasp the thought. I love that sense of security I have knowing that I share my nights and days with my bestest friend and the confident of my deeeeepest fears and joys. You don’t need to do everything together, be each other’s official or unofficial best friend; but while cultivating your own friendship, make sure you know each other friends.

13.  Grudges are a waste of time… Be ready for the necessary struggles and fights, but move on quickly from them. Learning and moving on will make you a better person, a better partner… Life is too short for you to hold on to that minute moment and let it affect the life you want to build. There is too much energy wasted in holding on to rancor, and believe me this, You (the one holding the grudge) will be left alone in that misery state because they (the one you hold the grudge against) will happily move on to better things… Don’t sabotage your happiness.

14.  Commitment… My Saving Grace… It is one of the most important components in a marriage. There will be days where doubts, aggravations, upsets, and life itself will make you question the value of your relationship. However your pledge to commit will make you stop from running off, it will make you add an additional 50% when you are already putting in 100%... Commitment will turn your relationship into a marriage...

15.  Communication… The Answer… But above all, I would say the aptitude to have an honest, open communication (which at times can be very difficult) is the pinnacle to reach when wanting your marriage to last. All that is relevant will organically generate from communication. Commitment, trust, partnership, togetherness, and love wouldn’t survive without communication…

16.  Laugh… The hubby and I get into this endless hysterical laughs, he comes up with the craziest jokes and stories and most of the time, and it’s just about us and our silliness. This lightens up our days and nights; nothing beats a good laugh…

17.  Want to be in it…! There is no magic wand to make your marriage work, you have to want it. As I said several times, love is not the end-all or be-all to a marriage. It’s a must-have ingredient that needs to be cultivated, but much more is needed to make the relationship lasting. Fairy tales of happily-ever-after don’t exist; life tales of making-it-ever-after do. Thinking your marriage is going to be a lasting success just because you’re in love is a BIG mistake. Tina Turner said it best “What’s love got to do with it?”

18.  Compromise… is that nasty prescription pill you have to take to make things better. Know that you are equal partners but also know when to take a step back and let the other shine; every situation requires a leader but to accomplish and solve those situations you need to work as a team.

19.  The word…after it’s said…  Words once spoken cannot be unspoken or erased; they can never be taken back. One may attempt to take them back but the damage is already done. Hurtful words not only sting deep, but also leave lasting scars, so make sure you own everything that comes out of your mouth. After all is said and done, there’s really no recovering from it!
“At times, we forget the weight that words carry and how irreversible (good or bad) and lasting the aftermath can be. You can always sincerely seek forgiveness and forgiveness may be granted but remember that forgetting is a totally different beast to tame”*Looking Back

20.  Bonus… R.E.S.P.E.C.T… Do I need to elaborate on this? Naaaaa…


Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Misperception of ME…Yours or Mine?

“It is good to see ourselves as others see us. Try as we may, we are never
able to know ourselves fully as we are, especially the evil side of us.
This we can do only if we are not angry with our critics but will take in good heart whatever they might have to say.”
~Mahatma Gandhi

“You can be SUPER mean!”…
There were only four people in the kitchen. And although his stare was directed towards me, it just couldn’t be… I looked over my shoulder because he COULDN’T have been talking about me… but… no one was behind me…
Was he talking about his wife??? I guess not, as she was laughing at my baffled expression… Maybe he was talking about my hubby. I turned and looked towards him but his eyes quickly looked down, avoiding mine, but the jerking of his shoulder clearly gave away the silent laugh he was trying to hold in…
“What are you talking about? Me? Mean? I am NOT a mean person… EVER!”
And while we went back and forth, my brother standing strong about what he had just stated and me rebutting all his reasons, I was wondering if he had just suffered a head injury. Maybe I had gotten hit by a soccer ball during one of his referee’s games... That must of have been it.
So I had to “agree to disagree” and hope he would come to some sort of sense or just finally look at me and say “I was kidding!”

While (that day) I brushed it off, I couldn’t let the conversation disappear completely from my “offended” brain. So a few weeks later, I brought it up again. Same milieu, same usual suspects…
“I can’t believe you told me that I could be SUPER mean!!!!” I blurred out.
I will spare you of the conversation that followed and just summarized by saying… Not a good outcome for me, so ultimately I had to really give his words some weight… Could it be?
However, the reality of what he was saying; that I “sometimes was,” stubbornly refuses to fit in with who I know myself to be…

My store staff nicknamed me “Sandstorm.” I occasionally heard from some of them that I was hard and yes …mean. But while I found humor to the nickname, I realized some were serious about how they perceived me and I was okay with it, as I charged it to them being intimidated by my assertiveness, not me actually being mean. After all, aren’t you supposed to show a level of authority in the work area? Aren’t you supposed to create a certain level of fear, separation, so your authority can undoubtedly be recognized?
The Hubby calls me mean every other day… I don’t scratch the right spot between his shoulder blades, so clearly I’m mean… so really when he does, I give the side eye treatment and move on…
But this was different… This was coming from my brother and if anyone knows me, they know I’m very sensitive when it comes to these 10 individuals with whom I share the bloodline with J

So I started to think… How Do You See Yourself?

Many of us have this dismissive attitude towards others, feeling as though, “What you think of me is yours to deal with because I know who I am.” We like to think we are self-aware and any view of ourselves that is totally outside of our perception of self is with no question, wrong and absurd… But the person giving their POV on you may have a legitimate point if the perception is positive (duhhhhh). But really… I would be lying if I say, “I don’t care about how others think about me!” At the end of the day, something in us yearns for that acceptance, the need to fit in and be part of this big social driven world.
To be able to understand how people see us is what allows us to connect with our surrounding and the people in them.
Perhaps the delicate balance between the reality of who we know we are and what others perceive us to be, is maintained by the ones closest to us; the people who will keep you on your toes but appreciate and love you for who and how you are, not just for the impression you leave.

So I reflected and I can admit there are many things about me that are ugly. A workaholic, at times a neglectful wife (sorry babyJ), at times an absent mom (sorry babiesJ), at times a neglectful friend and at times a disconnected leader. There are also many things about me that are not open to compromise, like my values (although I keep an open mind), my beliefs, and mostly my family which may have me perceived as uncompassionate, and unloving... at times. I always had this idea of myself (which I thought was exactly the same of how the world perceived me) of being friendly, likable and loving, big hearted, helpful, spoiled but not obnoxious, intelligent, opinionated but not self-righteous, approachable and respectable… And while I write down this wonderful list of adjectives about me, I realize that I see myself from a place of purpose and intention while the receiving end sees me from my actions…

While my intention is never to be mean (definitely not SUPER mean), I do see why my actions could have me perceived as such… at times, of course! I also understand that other’s perception and misconception of me does not, and has not defined me but needs to be considered!
SO I pledge to try not to be dismissive of other’s opinions of me but in turn, work at seeing myself through their POV’s so any misconceptions, false impressions can be dismantled right away and my self-awareness be based on accurate feedback and not my “unbiased” ego J J J

As I tried to put a bit of humor into this “Lesson Learned” message, it truly pains me to know that I did step away from a situation leaving someone to deal with an unintentional hurtful attitude from me. So for my own sanity, I need to promise myself to be real with regard to my own perception!

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