I survived

**Me getting ready this morning being a little goofy**
So I did it! I returned to work this morning for my first 4 hour shift. 9-1. It was not as bad as I feared, although for the first half hour or so my heart was racing in my chest. It was not a panic attack but fear. Fear that I was going to stared at. Fear that my co-workers would judge me. Plain old fear. So I took deep breaths until I could feel my heart calm.
Before work,  having my coffee, I opened my email to discover that mom had sent me a card. Telling me that I had it  today and it would be alright. T came and gave me a big squeeze hug because Chichi had Skyped and told him to. I got a little misty eyed and messaged mom. They were warm fuzzy tears. I was worried my mascara would run. It didn’t. And than I began to go through my emails.
First one I opened, joypassiondesire. She is a blogger that I recently began to follow. Her post was You can do this, don’t give up. All positive quotes and each one seemed to be directed at me. Than I opened raynotbradbury and her’s was about The State of Present. This one was about being in the now. Once more it seemed to be directed at me. That is how Thought #6 came about. I left for my day at work feeling that I would be able to better handle what would be thrown at me.
Dropped T off and got not one but two kisses and a kiss blown through the window. He reminded me that I was to have a good day and that I could do it. My very own little cheerleader. I drove off to work, and unfortunately got stuck behind the slowest driver ever. Okay not ever but this is not the first time that I have been stuck behind the same driver. Not that I was in a rush but it was 8:55 a.m. and I started at 9, so I moved around him. I had to chuckle to myself as I drove by and recognized him.
I was great until I walked into the store. As I made my way upstairs I kept dropping my head. I was conscious that I was doing this and kept saying ‘Jay look up. Not down. Up.’ (In regards to my staring down I read another post that seemed to be directed at me. Grateful Single Moms post Make Small Changes that will Produce Exciting Results.)  I spent my morning in Customer Service. Swept and cleaned. Kept myself busy. Helped customers. One of my regulars spotted me and came over. He gave me his hand to shake and pulled me into a hug telling me that he was happy to see me back. He had missed me. We chatted for a few minutes and than I had to go back to work.
I am going back slowly. My only responsibility right now is to ease myself back into my job. To get use to being back out in public and interacting with customers. And co-workers. When I started to wander, my mind catalouging, I hummed to rein myself in. When I saw things that annoyed or irritated me, I would begin to chant in my head, ‘Not my responsibility.’ This is not me abdicating responsibility, this is me protecting myself.
I have worked very hard to change my thinking. To being responsible for myself and T. To not going around behind others and cleaning up the errors and messes. (Makes me sound egotistical. But in my previous incarnation I strove for perfection so I was forever holding all the reins.) I was told being back meant cleaning would again be done. Um no sorry, I will do what I have to do but as for the rest, there are supervisors to deal with that. Again not abdicating, taking my time and easing into a roll, that while I am extremely good at it, can overwhelm and deplete me. My support group all checked in. V was there and I went to get a hug from her before beginning. One of the courtesy clerks was so excited to see me he wrapped me in a big squeeze hug. Which made me feel wonderful.
I will continue to take each day one moment by moment. And that is what I am working on. Remembering to remain in in the now. To not look ahead.
To paraphrase Ms. raynotbradbury reply to my comment ‘stick to the now it is all you can do or change.’

Mommy knows best

***Picture downloaded this morning****

I recently had a conversation with an older female friend regarding males and how they view females. And how teenage girls dress in such a way so as to entice the male sex. I was appalled. I could not believe what I was hearing. I was even told I would feel the same in a few years when T became a teenage boy.

I have never been shy around T. He has seen me naked I would say up until he was about 6 or so. I know this is going to cause concernation but I had a reason. I do not want T growing up objectifying the female body. I want him to realize that that cute girl he is looking at is as anatomically designed as his mother. It is only a body.

I am not so naive as to think that T is not going to be looking at girls and having thoughts. He is a boy. And hell I remember what being a teenager felt like. I know how overactive my hormones were so I am not going all puritan here.

What I want T to learn is that a woman’s body is her own. Only she can choose whether or not to share it with you. And no matter what she wears, that is not an invitation to subject her to your asinine comments and delusion of being absolutely irresistable to everyone of the opposite sex.

This past year I finally became comfortable in my own skin. I am proud of who I am and how I look. I am wearing clothing that actually fits me. I have always hidden my body and shape.

That has more to do with the past past than it does with the here and now. However a few times I had comments made regarding my clothing and what signals I am sending.

Back the fort up people. I am 45 years old. The only signals I am sending out are the ‘I love myself, I am proud of myself, I am in a damn good place and wow am I loving my life.’ The signals I am not sending are the ones that say violate me against my wishes.

So, ultimately the way that T views the female body will be dependent on what I teach him. And here is what I am teaching him:

A woman’s body is her own. Should you choose to be an asshole and violate a woman against her wishes, you will be praying that the police find you before I do. Because son, if you disrespect a woman and violate her I am going to whoop your ass and turn you in. Dragging your ass into the Police Station by your ear.