I made all of the wrong choices previously, so I'm trusting HP's got this for me next time around. And when I get stressed out or overly concerned about it, I give it back to HP all over again.
Cyndy, you totally hit the nail on the head on this one. I don't know if any of you remember the story about the sticky notes my sponsor made me write. These were reminders of stuff that I just wasn't getting, slogans that I really needed to drill into my dopey little codependent brain: "Patience, not projecting." "Know your worth." "Let it unfold." These post-its have been stuck inside the cabinet where I store my coffee so that I have to see them once a day, come hell or high water. When one gets decrepit, I write it afresh and repost it.
My HP likes to send commercial messages when I am being particularly obtuse. He does this by dropping one of the post-its off the door of the cabinet. For a long time, it was "Know your worth." No amount of tape would keep it on the door. I finally got the message.
Lately, the falling post-it has been "Let it unfold." Over and over in these last few weeks, and every time, I think, "OK, where do you want me to let things unfold?" So, as I was lying there, projecting like mad and not sleeping the night I first posted about this, I thought, "hey, HP, I don't know what to do about this, so I'm just handing it off to you for the night." In the morning, I stopped my projecting-fest, got my act together enough to talk to my BF about it in a productive way.
I know now, I am not going to ever be comfortable again. And basically, what I've decided is that I have been fairly damaged from my father and my last relationship...the one with my daughter's father....and that any one who gets involved with me will pretty much have to be the most patient man in the world.
As for this passage, you might be right about not being comfortable again, but then again, you might not. Like you, my alcoholic dad and my ex-AH did a number on me, but recovery freakin' rocks. When I think of myself as being damaged, I diminish all of the worth that my HP wants me to acknowledge. None of us is perfect. You are VERY VERY smart for being patient with yourself. I didn't have the added burden of having to deal with my ex-AH as you have, and I know he's a real handful. You'll know when you feel ready to stick a toe into the dating pool. But one gift of the program for me has been a keener self-awareness than I ever had before, and another is the value that I now acknowledge in myself. I get to keep a bunch of gummy bears these days!
Classic example: We'd been out running around all day today, and my BF helped me with a new bedframe we picked up. It was Ikea, it was Elizabeth NJ and it was bedlam, so I got him a gift as a thank you. It feels really good and natural to demonstrate gratitude in the right proportion, not going overboard. Tonight, I made dinner for my family and my BF. Dinner was yummy - and afterward, I put the leftovers into my groovy bento box for lunch the next day. As I was putting my lunch back in the fridge tonight, I thought that in the past, I would have wrapped up that lunch for him to take home. I was always trying so hard to be the best little person in the world to everyone but me. But now, I don't have to put myself last. I get to be first, too. It feels really good to be good to me. I never knew how to do that before, and I'm so grateful that I do now. I seem to have found a pretty patient guy. I'm growing into setting boundaries that are comfortable to me, and the growing is painful sometimes. I am certainly not winning any awards for gracefulness. But that's ok, I don't have to be perfect. We're both getting stronger every day.