One thing I discovered recently was that I can free myself from a very dark place relatively quickly. Dropping the power struggle. Being almost 7 months pregnant and unmarried, I was unaware of how much shame I was carrying around by having a big belly and no ring. I am not married. The father of my beautiful amazing daughter on the way was excited to marry me for many months and we got pregnant and things changed.
One of the things that changed, perhaps the most important thing, is that I lost my own confidence. If a “diva” (in the good sense of the word), is a woman who knows her own worth, let’s just say, I lost sight of my diva-hood. I felt so much joy for my little girl and at the same time, bogged down in shame, thinking that everyone can see in a ver visible way (by my ringless hand combined with a growing belly) that I did this all wrong. Here I was helping girlfriends. I even saw a friend meet a guy, become engaged 4 months later, and marry him in less than a year (after she had not dated for ages and had been suffering attachment to an old flame for a good year or two), and another friend had not dated in 6 years, met a nice guy and they are doing well. And, I had been a part of those successes by sharing some of these tools in those friendships. And now here I was suddenly pregnant, unmarried, and not feeling so diva-like anymore myself. The man and I went ring shopping… he was gung ho to move in and to help… and even to prepare to marry…But didn’t feel financially ready to buy a ring. And was getting a new job. It all felt hectic and difficult. And… I lost my cool. I panicked. I did all sorts of things to push love away. I felt sick, hormonal, confused, and a lot happened, and as my belly got bigger, the lack of the ring haunted me… he suggested we ring shop… and now, at this point, I was feeling like all of it was happening backwards… like I was going to miss out on my one romantic engagement process… I only want to be engaged and married once… and I wasn’t sure about him or us. I could barely think beyond nausea and pineapple cravings and how icky everything smelled, including my guy who was trying to be there, trying to make things work…
… And it all went from bad to worse…
Fast forward many months …
I finally realized all this shame that I felt was bondage for me.
Not wanting to go to church with a belly and no ring. Not wanting to talk to any men with a belly. Not wanting to talk to women about these tools if I was unmarried and pregnant. All sorts of things that I love that feel good to me, I was letting shame to get in the way.
And this was putting pressure on my relationship with him… And on me…
I had adopted an idea that I had to marry HIM. And make it work with HIM. I felt clingy and needy and desperate and was now in a masculine role of pursuit, and this man was no longer sure about me or us, and was saying he doesn’t want marriage, and even if he was still doing most of the calling, and showing up, my vibe had shifted in the wrong direction.
And then… in a matter of weeks, as I revisited and practiced my tools again, I remembered something simple…
I CAN be married and it doesn’t have to be now and it doesn’t have to be him.
And things shifted…
I realized this man is offering certain things that do feel good to me… he would like to help with the baby.. He is providing some financial support… He likes to help with my apartment. I can let him do these things if they feel good to him and he wants to offer and if they feel good to me and if he doesn’t want to be married, I don’t have to close off my options to marry.
And, if what he is offering doesn’t meet ALL of my needs (some needs that he was meeting before he may not want to meet anymore – for example, I like hearing I’m loved, a date out on the town like once per week, a sense of security in any man’s desire for me, and now, with a little one on the way, family too, some things he is open to, help around the house, and with the baby, and he is good at how to be smart with money and I can receive from that, help with my joy when she comes, but for ALL of my needs to be met, ultimately these things will all combine in a marriage, without losing fun and adventure of a bit of romance and dating, and with an engagement process that feels exciting and fun for everyone).
Before pregnancy, this man was beginning to meet all of my romantic needs, standing out, pursuing, calling, planning dates, etc, reliable, sure of me, although we were not exclusive until I became pregnant (and even then I was not sure if I was ready to be exclusive as I wasn’t engaged yet, and it felt like sudden pressure on me… I didn’t want to be exclusive until I was engaged. I wanted to keep options open. I wanted a romantic process from engagement to the altar… and now I was nauseous 24 hours / day…) when we tried to add baby on the way to where we were, not engaged, without a romantic proposal experience, or a pre-marriage process feeling fun and exciting, it didn’t come together, I felt sick physically, I still didn’t really want to live together until marriage which had been a boundary that I was now breaking because I felt so needy and sick and pregnant and hormonal. We were planning on pre-marital classes. I wanted to but it all felt rushed and less romantic than I hoped for my engagement process I only want to do once! I only want to be married once!
And as I felt so ill all the time, it wasn’t anything like how I had hoped for it to be. At some point, he admitted that he felt unsure about being a dad. And eventually he became unsure about us too…. So many things not lining up. It all sort of fell apart.
And at a point, when I was feeling at my most insecure, clingy, needy, crazy, desperate, not all too unsurprisingly, he no longer felt sure about us either and the more that dragged on, the worse things felt.
And it turns out, that is all ok! I may need ALL sort of things and I can have it ALL. I can have all of needs met which now include a man entering into a family with me. I can allow the father of my child to offer whatever he wants to at this point. I can also be open to receiving from other men too, even with a big huge belly, and once she comes, with a baby, keeping my options open until ALL needs are met which now still includes romance, and also openness to family, both, and with all of those things on the table with a marriage commitment. And I still want my romantic engagement process done right. And I can have it… When it all lines up, not some of it, all of it.
Until then, why not enjoy and appreciate what is offered by this man and yet open up to receive from others too. And see what falls into place.
In other words, I had fallen into an “urge to capture” without realizing it… And now I realize, even as the father of my child, we are not married and he is really just another man in the rotation insofar as he even wants to be at all. He may leave the rotation or he may want to offer more or less or not, who knows?
But my focus is back on me, my needs, having them met from wherever they come easy, not hard, not forced, not from a particular man, even the man whose daughter is in my belly.
Since I had this shift, all sort of good things are happening fast.
This morning, at church, I caught a man staring at me as I was enjoying the scenery of the parish and he looked away a bit nervous to be caught. I felt good in the moment. And that was enough. I was walking down the street on the way to church, and two women and a man walked by and the man said “good morning” and I responded. And that felt good too. Another moment of receiving. A woman at church shared her joy at the hymn we had just sang just as I was thinking how much I love that hymn and how much I had enjoyed singing it. I felt a nice moment of connection and joy there also. And she asked about my baby girl on the way. And another couple men walking behind me, said hello too and it felt good to let it in. I saw three ladies taking pictures outside my parish and they were joking about videos on how to suck in one’s stomach and I laughed aloud with amusement, understanding amusement, of being a woman. And I felt connection there. And all of these moments, in less than 30 minutes of my morning!
In other words, it is amazing how rich and full of joy life can be. How many men there are out there. How easy it is to get my needs met once my focus is off of any particular man and is back on my own needs and back in the present moment. The present moment is endless, infinitely, rich and full of life and joy.
I do hope to be married and to enjoy the warmth of family love with my little girl and a partner, the joy and romance and adventure of dates here and there with my guy maybe my little girl is home with babysitter or a friend on those evenings, and also the commitment that comes when a man has freely chosen to crash his boat on the rocks of our little family because he feels like the luckiest guy alive to be a part of our world. And until that shows up in one man, I am open to having each and every one of those needs met day to day by whoever is showing up to meet them. And this is a very exciting shift and adventure into the unknown.
One of my “siren statements” that came to me in the end of Rori’s program as I was revisiting it was “I am the smile that lights up the world”. I realized I have a beautiful smile. How easy it is to share that and how it brings me joy to smile too. I feel some fear when I look in a man’s eyes. I had overcome that last year when I discovered modern siren at first and was circular dating for months before I got pregnant. And I didn’t realize that I had shifted back into myself over these past months since. Until this week, I started making eye contact again and smiling at men and how I suddenly felt like the world was bigger and I was less alone. The other night I was in a group and a man was sitting next to me and he struck up a conversation and I was feeling hot and he interrupted the group to get a fan working. Made a bit of a scene over it and it felt good to let that in. And I let him feel my belly eventually, my little girl kicking. Next thing I knew two other men were trying to get the fan working also for me. All I had to say was” It feels a bit stuffy in here” with a smile.
I imagine we all have smiles can light up the world. Eye contact is a quick way to feel connected… the world expands. If you have been closed off for a while, you may try it a few times and feel fear and it may feel awkward but sticking with eye contact and a smile with every man you meet, it will quickly become easy and you will start to receive a lot from it. It may take courage to give it a shot but the healing is amazing and worth it… One day I was walking down the street and it spontaneously came to mind that my smile is a gift to others. It came to mind because I just happened to smile at someone on the street and saw his entire mood turn around. I don’t smile to give but it is an easy gift.
So… Anyway, so much can change so quickly. The world can expand quickly.
There may be a time when you feel stuck in a rut with a particular man. If that happens, imagine if he were to become just one man in your rotation rather than a goal to capture and imagine if all of your needs could start being met right now, starting today without that man doing anything differently… the world is big and ready to give to you. And imagine if you no longer felt locked in to any man who is not meeting ALL of your needs… you are ABSOLUTELY not locked in if you are not engaged or married to him…
And a whole new world can open up right away that changes you from the inside out.
And even if you are married to a man, you can do all of these same things anyway, obviously you wouldn’t take a date, but everything else, why not?
Hope this helps someone else as much as it has helped me…