Caren Ware's Blog

June 6, 2010

By the text book…no more txt txt.

Filed under: A Runner's Story,Marathon Running,Uncategorized — Caren Ware @ 7:47 am

I really want to grow. Take a  personal inventory of where I am at, who I am, where I can go, and who I can become. I don’t think I have a choice in the matter.  This quest is choosing me. So I  sit back and contemplate. Going to nauseate  myself with a nauseating exploration of  myself.

I asked my college age son what he saw as something I needed most to work on.  Loaded question.  Got an honest answer because he is an honest guy. “TIMING”.  Not timing races timing.  “Social timing. You say things that drop like bombs or go over like lead molasses.  You bring up things or issues, blabbering on your sleeves about things that people don’t need to know…too personal to be offered in an open conversation.  And the timing doesn’t always fit.  I would have to say a better way of communicating would be a good thing to work on.” 

So I  am.  Thus the acting classes.  Thus the reading  of books. Nugget little book.  Don’t know if it is still in print. Published in 1990. But  Life-Skills for Adult Children   by Janet G. Woititz & Alan Garner. A Great book for anyone that was raised without adequate communication and never got to develop skills to ‘do life”.  Functional families fill their kids with esteem and conversation. Profoundly troubled families disrupt and impair kids from developing keen skills and conversation tools that are so simple, but simply necessary to connect with people.  I lack some basic skills.  Painful to have to find and fine tune them in my forties, but oh, well.  I have to understand that something is  not wrong with me.  Something is just missing.  The background I came from was so disrupted I don’t know what is typical ,for one.  For two, I don’t know how to make small talk.  I need better skills in asking what I want. Saying things directly and not in the third person or  question form. Learning to adeptly say “no”.  Learning to actively listen.  “Wow, you seem upset.  Not , “Oh, yeah. I once had an experience like that!”  Lots and lots of stuff.  Instead of saying, “What a disappointment!”  Try, “I was disappointed.”  Simple, but so clearly better.  Having the skills to identify and express your feelings gives you all kinds of choices, like when not to!  Yahoo.  It is about time. Or according to my son, about timing.

There is even a chapter in there on ending visits and conversations.  “Adult children feel stuck in conversation, unsure of how to conclude them with a manner. When you finish your statement, leave.  Hanging around sends a confusing message.”  Duh.  Seems silly that would actual be a problem for anyone.  It is huge for me.  I sincerely can’t find a reservoir of knowledge on how to do this in me. Dry well there.   I linger too long out of guilt.  Get myself in time issue problems getting to the next social setting because I over-obliged the last one.  It’s exasperating.

So makes sense I would have the hardest time with the skills in the last chapter.  ENDING RELATIONSHIPS.  If you have read my blog from April backwards toward this date.  I have had no choice but to tackle this in a BIG way.  I have had major relationships of my life  end in this past year. 

But this day, I was too busy to read that last chapter.  I flung it in my backpack and put it on the agenda for later.  I had meetings to get to and one was very personal.

 I asked ‘the voice” if we could talk in person.  Ending a  friendship over the phone didn’t work for me.  I couldn’t hear the words. I needed to see them.  He agreed to meet me.  It was to be a meeting at noon at a coffee shop.  He got out of his car the same time as I .  He turned back and dropped 4 quarters in.  Limit of conversation- one hour.  He had sunglasses on.  It was brief.  I can’t even remember what was said.  Something to the fact that we were not just right for each other.  That there is a new relationship.  That it has more honesty to it.  All I know is that it is hard for a grown, capable women to cry in public, but there the  reservoirs were.  Water overflowing.  This  well  was not dry.  Tears were dripping on the table.   I asked him to take the glasses off. I could see the words. And I could see I  wouldn’t be able to talk to those eyes again. I felt like a veil being torn in two.  Dang.  What don’t I get about the word DONE?  Maybe that it is a four letter word.  Sure feels like it.

Good bye, dear friend.  I liked your radio luring voice. Your task orientation. Your calm conversations with people.  The parade that surrounded you, knowing someone everywhere you went.  The glance you would give out of the side of your eye. It twinkled and was bemused with life.  Yes, I stared at your profile and basked in your cologne.  I learned to like you very much. 

I stumbled around that day.  Can’t even remember who I met with.  What race committees or walk throughs I went to.  I couldn’t sleep that night.  I drug the backpack up on my mattress way after midnight. I unzipped it and fished for the Life-skills book.  Last chapter , ENDING RELATIONSHIPS.  Reading along. Bullet one.  Meet in a public place.   Bullet two. Meet in the morning or mid-day. This will give the other person all the day to think about the break up.  Too disturbing to present at night and can harm sleep. Bullet three.  Be Brief. Give it a time limit. (4 quarters in a parking slot keeps it brief!) . Bullet four.  Begin with only your feelings and stick to the subject.  

He must have read the same book. 

Guess that is an ended chapter in my book.  Veil in two.   I  esteemed and respected him.  I wanted to learn to more than like him. I will cherish what I learned from getting to know him.   And there will be things in which I do not understand.  Textbook break up!  I used to enjoy txting him. I didn’t enjoy by the TEXTBOOK.

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