Process > Product

As promised, I would not keep all of my dating escapades to myself. First I had to tell my kids (since neither of them obviously read my last post). The one who lives out of state said, “Great Mom, go for it!”

The one who is the roommate laughed until she snorted and asked, “Am I getting a new dad?”. At 19, no, you’re fine, and that is absolutely not a part of this equation. And this is why I didn’t tell you sooner 🙂

Before I divulge any specifics, I want to share my new-found healthy approach for this whole venture.

It all became clear during a recent lecture from the cute hippie professor who teaches my art class. He was talking about art, but I had an awakening about life.

Process vs Product.

When you begin an art project, do you know exactly what you want the end result to be? Such as, I want this to look like a palm tree on the beach with a blazing sunset. Yes, please. I have a gillion of those exact pics on my phone and one day I’d like to paint it. Can you show me how? Focus: product.

But then he talked about process. Do you just get out your pencils and paper and start drawing and doodling and see what happens? Um, no, not really. Sometimes I doodle in the margins on the sermon notes during church. And since I help print the things, there’s plenty of doodle room. But am I okay to just play? Can I let the creative juices flow without having an end goal? Not usually. Focus: process.

I’ll get back to dating momentarily. Hang with me, people.

And then the best yoga instructor ever, Adriene, is leading me and a million others through Yoga Revolution and it’s amazing. Guess what she talks about all the time? Focus on the practice – the process – it’s not about attaining a specific shape or pose, it’s about getting there. Process > product.

I’ve heard this before. It’s not the destination, it’s the journey. It’s how you live, not just reaching the goals. Etcetera, etcetera. It finally resonated.

This is everything in life, including dating. It’s the process. I don’t know what the end result will be. And I don’t have to know. The last time I was single (12 years ago) the focus was a husband for me and a dad for them. I didn’t spend enough time in the process, and the closest candidate was just going to have to fit the role for which we were casting.

I wasn’t all that happy with who I was then. I thought having a “godly man” was the missing ingredient in my Recipe for a Happy Life. Focus: product.

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No wonder it was a disaster. I wasn’t true to myself and my kids. I bought into the script of many single moms: husband = better life. Sure, I went through the checklist, but far too quickly. I saw what he wanted me to see, and didn’t look any further. Hey mister, fit the bill, oh, and pay it while you’re there, please.

It was tragic for all of us. I learned a lot. I asked for forgiveness. I have forgiven myself and him. I’ve done the work and dealt with my crap. It’s been a long road, and now here I am.

I realize I have all the necessary ingredients for my own happy life. And it IS a happy life! I no longer need the end result to be anything at all. My clock is not ticking. There is no deadline. There is no script. There is only joy and peace ahead.

I am not ready for more than uplifting conversations and pleasant company. I am ready for fun and the learning and…the process.

Let the adventures begin.

Thanks for reading, until next time,
Sherri

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