Posted by: Judy | March 26, 2019

Pistachio Bread recipe

I’m taking a bit of a break for a week, sharing fluff instead of soul-searching.

I first discovered this recipe in the Southwest Airlines recipe book, submitted by Sharon Hall. I’ve since found it other places.

1 pkg. pistachio instant pudding, 4-serving box size

1 pkg. white cake mix

4 eggs

1/4 cup vegetable oil (I’ve used corn and coconut)

1/4 cup water

8 oz sour cream

green food color (add until bright green)

12-15 maraschino cherries, if desired (I’ve never used them.)

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl.

In a small bowl, mix 1/2 cup sugar and 3 tsp. cinnamon.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease and flour bread pans.

Starting with the batter, alternate with sugar/cinnamon mix, batter, mix, and batter, using generous amounts of mix between layers. End with batter.

Bake 40 minutes or more. Test with toothpick. Makes 2 large loaves or 8 mini loaves. (I’ve never done minis.)

Posted by: Judy | March 25, 2019

New Observation

In a PTSD/CPTSD group on social media, one of the gentleman asked what he could do to improve his interactions with women, noting that there’s only 10-15% male participation. He wants to be helpful not a trigger.

He’d been abused by both genders so he didn’t have a specific bias against either. I’m the same way. I do find holidays like Mothers Day especially difficult. Posts about how wonderful mothers are I tend to ignore. Posts about how protective fathers are I also ignore.

I stated that I’d had two female counselors and one male. The male was the best of the three. We did the most work and accomplished the most. I wasn’t prepared to reveal much with my first counselor, but then again, I still believed a lot of my memories were false. My second counselor didn’t comprehend how bad it was. I spoke about my mother only once or twice. Sorry, but the screaming wasn’t the worst of the abuse and brushing it off only caused me to clam up. My last counselor was working with my sister, so he already knew a lot before I walked in the door. I can’t express the relief of knowing I would be believed from the beginning. This meant I was in a place ready for healing I’d never been in before.

I also stated that I appreciate help from anyone who’s healthy. I don’t mean people who are perfectly healthy. No one is but God. I mean people who are working to be healthy.

Many of the authors who end up on my No List are there because as I read about their characters I keep thinking: They need counseling more than I do.

Most of my life was spent being grateful for anyone who paid attention to me. This is not usual for abuse survivors. We are brutally taught that we are worthless and unworthy of love. Hence, we are shocked when anyone expresses a different opinion.

I ended up in a lot of unhealthy friendships for a few reasons. 1) I didn’t care. Someone liked me. 2) I didn’t know how to spot red flags. I’d lived with them all my life. What was one more? 3) I didn’t believe I was worthy of anything better. 4) I wasn’t healthy, so how could I expect anything better from anyone else? 5) I thought that if I was their friend then maybe I could help them. It’s difficult to help others if you’re drowning.

I excelled at encouraging others. I often felt like my primary role was to be a cheerleader. You don’t have to be healthy to be an encourager. In fact, a lot of abuse survivors are encouragers. We don’t want others to feel alone because we know how awful alone feels.

The pickle I find myself in now is that being a cheerleader feels like all I know how to do in relationships. I don’t know how to have relationships where I’m anything but an encourager. I need to do some praying and thinking.

Posted by: Judy | March 24, 2019

Inspiration

Light a match, and

it can destroy a building or

give light to a dark place –

it’s your choice.

~ Stephen R. Covey

Posted by: Judy | March 23, 2019

Saturday Silly

From a cat widgets, and yes, I’ve done this, and it’s embarrassing. I’ve improved. Always make enough cookies to share. It seemed appropriate after this week’s posts.

Posted by: Judy | March 22, 2019

Good News Friday

*My sister brought me a lemon croissant and hot chocolate from P.Croissant

*Lunch at Kneaders with a dear friend and my SiL

*Yummy Dave’s BLT on Country White and eclair

*Recovering from my cold

*Roses are blooming

What was something good in your week?

Posted by: Judy | March 21, 2019

Reading List 21-25

21. Top Dog: The Story of Marine Hero Lucca by Maria Goodavage biography. Heartwarming and in places heart wrenching. I learned about Lucca on FB, and followed her page. She passed away 20 January 2018, after 6 years of service and 6 years of retirement. A good age for a big dog. A keeper.

22. Best Dating Rules (The Best Girls series book 2) by Tamie Dearen contemporary romantic comedy. I’m enjoying this series.

23. Best Foot Forward (The Best Girls series book 3) by Tamie Dearen contemporary romantic comedy. I had more trouble finishing this one but liked it enough to want to read the next.

24. Best Laid Plans (The Best Girls series book 4) by Tamie Dearen sweet contemporary romance.

25. Until I Met You (Brides of Seattle Prequel) by Kimberly Rose Johnson sweet contemporary romance. A heartwarming Christmas story I’d enjoy reading anytime. I want to read the next book in the series.

Posted by: Judy | March 20, 2019

Twisted Self-Care

I’ve beat myself up, scolded, harangued, sweet-talked (pun intended), in an effort to eat healthier.

The truth: 1) My PC (primary caregiver) fed me food that made me sick and starved me because she didn’t want me to get fat.

2) Junk food never made me sick, unless I ate a whole bag of cookies all at once, which I didn’t do often.

Throughout my childhood, I’d take my meager allowance to the corner store and carefully figure out how I could get the most with what little I had. I could horde candy in my room. Chocolate was more filling. Caramel and chocolate took longer to eat.

For the record, sometimes I’d invest in Breyer model horses. As I moved into my teens, I’d invest in clothes. My PC would only buy me pretty clothes, dresses appropriate for Sunday meetings but not practical for everyday wear. The local FedMart offered cheap clothes that fit me off-the-rack.

The insanity: I’m beating myself up for eating the junk food I ate growing up to keep from going hungry.

The truth: I’m eating much healthier now than ever before in my life.

I really need to learn to stop beating myself up.

Posted by: Judy | March 19, 2019

And another lie revealed…

I told my high school boyfriend what my limits were in our physical relationship. He respected those limits, for a short time, and then would push past them, proud of himself for “working” me around to his way of thinking. I’d cave, for a while, and then I’d set the limits again. In the boys’ locker room, among his friends, he called me the Ice Queen. He had no idea. The more he pushed, the icier I became. I had lines I would not cross, and I discovered I had a core of steel.

What I acknowledged: I hated myself for being weak. The longer the tug of war went on the more I hated myself. I already loathed myself for being weak, allowing myself to be molested as a child. That’s where I was in my head. Abusers cultivate that state of mind. The depths to which I was willing to dive were deep.

What I didn’t acknowledge: I hated him.

How was what I felt for him any different than what I felt for my abusers? I wasn’t allowed to hate them either. They professed they loved me, so I had to love them, too. No matter what they did.

The good news is that I don’t hate them anymore. It takes too much energy.

Consequences remain. I fight a constant, daily battle to not judge others by the standard set by my abusers. It isn’t difficult if there are no reminders, no similarities. It’s problematic when someone reminds me of them.

With God’s help, and the counselors He put in my path, I’m mostly able to treat people with respect regardless of the reminders. I’ve also learned to listen to the warning signals.

Hopefully, I will finally let this all go. More likely, God has another step for me to take to healing that I’ve yet to see. Giving the battle to God and praising Him in the storm.

Posted by: Judy | March 18, 2019

Uncovering another lie…

Tamie Dearen’s created another character who made me look at myself. She ends dating relationships whenever the guy turns serious because one guy used the words “I love you” to get her into bed. She thought she was in love.

The lie I told myself: I stopped dating because I didn’t know how to say “No.”

I say “No” just fine, though not as early as I’d sometimes like but still long before they get me into bed or even close. That wasn’t the real problem.

The Truth: The men in my life fell into three categories 1) the ones who thought I should be grateful they noticed me and were only interested in a physical relationship 2) the ones who wanted someone to take care of them and 3) the ones who treated me like one of the guys.

I was tired of wasting my time, and I couldn’t figure out how to navigate the dating waters with more finesse. That’s the real reason I stopped dating.

Well-meaning friends told me that I wasn’t the kind of girl a man dated; I was the kind he married. They never had a response for me when I asked, “How is he going to marry me if he doesn’t date me?”

Now I’ve created a new problem: It’s been so long, I’m not sure I’d notice a man was interested in me, even if he was wearing an actual suit of armor. I’d notice if he were on a white horse but only because I’d notice the horse. I probably still wouldn’t figure out he was interested in me.

I never planned to end up alone, not really. I confess I often felt like God had prepared me all my life to be alone. I have trouble hanging onto friends. I do all right as long as we don’t spend a lot of time together. How in the world would I maintain a long-term marriage relationship, where we saw each other every day?

In my effort to create a healthy habit of not falling for every guy I met who showed the slightest interest in me, I created a whole new mess. I succeeded it stopping the old bad habit, but now I’m completely oblivious to any interest of any kind. I don’t know how to even begin changing.

I want to nurture the dream of marrying not kill it.

I know I need to become the person I want to be. I’m still a work in progress.

However, I will always be a work in progress.

This, I understand:

This makes me laugh, but I was kind of hoping my knight wouldn’t be a squirrel. Maybe I’m being too picky.

Posted by: Judy | March 17, 2019

Inspiration for the day…

My favorite Irish Blessing, posted on social media:

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