What doesn't kill you...

I was driving home from dropping my daughter off at Preschool and mulling over the bizarre realization that, in the past year and a half, I have gone through FIVE divorces of one kind or another. Granted they were each on a slightly different scale as to shock, pain, suffering, and whether or not I ended up in a better place when everything settled down...
1. a real divorce, involving a guy I'd been married to for almost 19 years. (And lived with for 23).
2. a "friend" divorce - my only close friend and one who knew everything about what I had just gone through
3. my publisher - in this case, I played the roll of one of the children and suffered through the chaos and confusion as the Parenting Plan was tweaked.
(3.5. - I'm not going to count the nightmare with the contractor because  that wasn't a long-term relationship).
4. my employees - I'm still not sure how so much hatred and anger could be generated, just by admitting failure.
5. Wingdoodle - I thought I had put it out of its misery last winter. Are there such things as "zombie stores"!!? This one sucks blood too... ohmigosh, I might have a new genre here! (LOL)

So all these thoughts were swirling around in my head, with visuals, and ideas for "what I should have..." and "what I could..." and Kelly Clarkson's song "Stronger" comes on the radio...

"... What doesn't kill you makes you stronger
Stand a little taller
Doesn't mean I'm lonely when I'm alone
What doesn't kill you makes a fighter
Footsteps even lighter
Doesn't mean I'm over cause you're gone..."

This is the kind of break-up song that you crank up really loud, sing at the top of your lungs, and shake your fist at the sky. And when it is over... you wonder if it's really true.  I couldn't figure out WHY it only feels right while it's playing.  When I got home, I looked it up on YouTube and I noticed, in the music video, sure enough, lots of people shaking their fists and singing really loud... but always in GROUPS. I think it is so much easier to "stand tall" and be indignant, etc. when you have a posse. That line: "Doesn't mean I'm lonely when I'm alone" is the loose link. OK, I can believe that I am a strong person for having gone through all this crap. And then some more crap. And a little more. (Oh, drat, there's another pile!) But what if I DO feel lonely? Does that negate all the other fist-pumping stuff?

The irony is, before I started actually standing up for myself... aka making enemies... I DIDN'T feel lonely when I was by myself. I'm an introvert. I LIKE to be on my own. I truly believed my life would be so much better if I could just unload that one person who was draining my life-energy....

You know how people talk about "thoughts become things" and you can't move on and get new experiences, etc. if you don't unload the old, bad ones... people too...? All that stuff is true. And as I unloaded all these bad people (not always by my own choice), I realized the formula is not exactly one-to-one. ie: One bad person gone = one new good person. Nope. I think it's by weight! One really, really bad person gone = a whole bunch of new people. Seriously. I have met more new, super-cool people in the last year than I had met... EVER. And I started to wonder if maybe I wasn't really as introverted as I had previously thought.

Here's what I discovered: if you have two friends (counting the husband) and they are both "bad" for you, when they aren't around, you feel pretty good, right? Now let's say you have two friends who are fun and creative and like to laugh... when they aren't around, you feel... what?  Yep, lonely.

So, that's where I am right now. I am working on rewiring my thoughts and beliefs. Some of it is very uncomfortable and some (because that's hard-wired into my personailty!) are really EXCITING!

As a parallel to redoing my brain, I am also redoing my website. MobileMe/.Mac/iWeb is all ending next month so my current site will disappear. Of course, I was devastated, then angry, then really annoyed, then... hmmm... I can start over. Do something completely different. Hmmmm....
If you want to see the old site, it's here: www.BeezInkStudio.com and the new site is here: www.SandySteenBartholomew.com. I am still adding content to the site and I would LOVE to know what YOU would like to see there. I will be adding a pop-up shop too. And there will be a sign-up list there so you can download things... what else - help me do my re-write. :-)