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Author Topic: My Story Aliens stole my W!!!!! Part 15: "Who's the Master? Sho'Nuff!!!"

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WoooHoooo, part 15!!! HA!!
Previous thread: https://mlcforum.theherosspouse.com/index.php?topic=11967.0

What is this "Who's the Master?" stuff......  ;D
Maybe my favorite movie of all time is The Last Dragon...... incredible movie. The villain is the Shogun of Harlem and he's always saying "Who's the Master?"...... all he cares about is being #1 and everyone else knowing it. HA!!!!!

For years I would ask W (jokingly)  "Who's the Master?" and she'd smile and then say "I'm the Master" (her, not me). HA!!!
It was always a funny thing...... and we'd both laugh.
Fast forward to today: I am the Master..... in all things... in all aspects of life. There isn't failure, anywhere..... and I don't allow bad things to creep into my life. I'm the king of my kingdom, and in my bubble of control and influence: life is very good (best ever).
"Who's the Master??!!??"..... I am.  :D

W has been opening up, and wanting to do things more and more......
The other night I went to bed (she had turned in early - I had stayed up late). Climb into bed..... she's awake, and *BOOM* - R talk. HA!!!! Oh good. We're overdue. She goes on a venting session with all her disappointments laid bare. I listen, ask questions, and am gentle. Her perspective is still twisted, and still incapable of positive thought. Glass half empty for her, instead of my glass half full outlook.
I can see her FOO issues still persisting as she lists them out. As she's talking about them, my heart breaks a little because they are things she can't control or fix. Her remaining core issues are the relationships she so desperately wants (she desires her side of the family to care/be involved, and a restored optimal connection to FIL) are probably not going to happen..... and she's struggling so hard to resolve this. I have a great family: strong, connected, loving, caring...... she wishes her family was the same - but they aren't. So very sad..... and how does someone let go of this?
She got into blaming FIL (who does have problems) and I stopped her. I pointed out it was MIL who destroyed their family, and wrecked FIL permanently..... she said "yes I know"...... she knows in her head, but her emotional damage and need to connected with ex-MLC MIL to overcome her abandonment issues means taking the perspective of MIL's justification. At least I'm in place to stop her, tell the truth, let her brain twist, and leave it at that. The rest is up to her.

We talked for a couple hours. At one point, she claims everyone is afraid of her... even me. I say "I'm not afraid of you" (with a small laugh). She says "you're afraid to talk to me", and reply "I'm not afraid to talk to you - I can do it any time" (with a bigger laugh). It's very obvious this person has no control, no power over me.... no more eggshells...... my gentleness is love, not fear. It's consideration, not avoidance. She continues her vent, and her fears of failure come spilling out. Her book isn't selling. The people she thought would support her haven't. Her friends haven't. Her family hasn't. In her perspective they are waiting and watching for her to fail. She is questioning and believing that she will fail. How horrible. Once again she thinks her life is stuck and there's no way out. She only sees negative.
I point out the good. I point out the accomplishments..... and I point out that she is too hard on herself, that her desire for perfection is impossible (for anyone). She grudgingly agrees, and then justifies...... I stop her again. We go into the past to find where this is rooted: where does it come from........ and we find it in the destruction of her family: Her necessary role change caused by the abandonment of her mother.
She is overwhelmed, and has no resolution. She knows what the problem is (this one anyway), and has no idea what to do with it. We leave the conversation there, and fall asleep.
The next day she apologizes for keeping me up so late.... it isn't a big deal to me, but it is to her.

Conversation is easy, and can go on and on once she is open, and once I flip my switch from listen to talk.
It was really nice to have "flow" once again.... it's always nice when that happens..... you know: sharing.
I don't know how this person resolves everything unless she comes to the point of accepting she can't have the things she's stuck on. She can't fix her father, she can't undo her mom's MLC, she can't make her side of the family act like a family.... she can't make people care.... she can't have her early teen years back..... and as a result of these connection problems can't get really close friends until she learns how to connect with people in a meaningful and trusting way. How does someone learn and allow themselves to be vulnerable when their whole life was spent trying to protect themselves in the midst of deep emotional damage?
It's a good question.... and I don't have an answer, beyond acceptance.

Thinking about her life and mine..... I can always keep going, because I can pick myself back up. I realize this has not been the way of her life, no matter what she says. She continues because all she knows how to do is fight. It is all struggle, it is all conflict. There is no joy because once some area is won, it's on to the next fight. She's never done, there's never a pause, all she knows is war. If she has no conflict with someone else, no issue to rage against, no cause to champion...... then she fights against herself.  :o 
My life is peace, and that nature is alien and unknown to her. How sad. I wish it was.
I wonder if the end of this process is this person surrendering, putting down their arms and not willing to fight anymore. The realization that we lose, and that dying on every hill isn't what makes life worth living. We try, we win, we lose, and thru it all we continue. Sportsmanship, but in life instead of a game.   

On to me!!! My mom finished her 1st series of cancer treatments Thursday. I don't know how long before we know if it worked or not. I have faith everything will be fine.
I booked a vacation to Vegas in Dec.... got the hotel and airfare...... I'm locked in.  8)
Different hotel than I've stayed at before..... one step closer in my quest to stay at every hotel on the strip (someday - not anytime soon).
I'm also excited because I bought the higher priced ticket for the return trip which allows the express line to check in.... never done that before.
Small and maybe a little silly, but I've always wanted to try it (especially when waiting in line at the airport).   :P
My need for something to look forward to is mostly small things..... I'm looking forward to this.
Sometime next year I'll have enough airline miles for a free ticket!! Also never had that happen before. Another thing to look forward to.

Someday, after I retire.... I hope to travel all the time. Amusement parks all the time. Vegas all the time. Maybe get into visiting all the museums I've always wanted to see. That sure would be nice. That circus museum in Florida would be amazing.
The older I get, the more I want to see with my own eyes, and experience.   

Things are mov'in mov'in.....  ;)

One day at a time,

-SS     
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M - 46
Together 28 years, M 25
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019
Start of Shadow - Feb 2012

B
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SS
Prayers for your mom, hope everything works out! As for the master I know it’s not me :W, kids,dog, way down at the bottom is where I ended up. Hope you have a great time in Vegas, we’ve done Paris, Luxor and Circus Circus. The Paris buffet is by far the best IMHO, sounds like you’re in for a good time!
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Hey B1  :D

The Paris buffet is gone!!! *POOF*
I was wanting to try that one again (I went maybe 20ish years ago..... but don't really remember it except it had a lot of good bread  :D ).
The place that had a lot of memories for me was Planet Hollywood (the restaurant at Forum Shops), and it just went under two months ago  :-[ . Even though it had gone way downhill over the years, I always would go on each trip. That was the 1st "nice" place W and I went to when we were 1st married. Always a treat to be young, broke, in love, and at a Planet Hollywood. Look at this, look at that.... that looks fake, is it really real? HA!!! What good memories. I wonder if that's one of the reasons I like going there so much. Probably.  :-X
   
It's crazy how expensive buffets are now days.... the one at Caesars is almost $100 a head, and the one at Wynn isn't too far behind (haven't tried either)...... but I bet they're wonderful. I remember when the buffets were $14.99  :o   
Really want to stay at Luxor and Paris sometime..... and Excalibur and NYNY. I like themed places too  8) Now that I think about it... I'm just shy of halfway to trying them all. Sure would be nice if all the family friendly stuff from the 90's was still there. I still think about that awesome pirate sign at Treasure Island and the amazing original show they'd do outside with the ships..... that was my favorite thing on the strip. Still think about Star Trek the Experience at the Hilton (incredible - I so wish that was still there)  ;D . I ran into Sigfried once at the Mirage a short time after BD. Seemed like a nice guy. Got to see Roy too, but he was in really bad shape. Poor guy. I always hoped he'd heal and they'd be able to do their show again. Now they are both gone.     

I wouldn't worry about being on the bottom - we are all there after BD.

-SS
 
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I miss the family friendly stuff from way back, too. Funny story, I was selling stained glass at a Renaissance Faire back in the day and a group of us were walking along the strip in garb (costume.)  I needed to get inside Treasure Island to use the restroom and just then the show started. The sea of people parted for me as I walked through, thought I was part of the show.  ;D

I hope you get to stay at whatever places you want to stay. I haven't been to the strip proper in years, but I used to like the themed places too. Are you a show person? I also just went to Omega Mart in Las Vegas, which was interesting. The Pinball Museum had some older machines that were interesting (like a 1980s Raiders of the Lost ark and Star Wars). And some interesting non working things, like the old injection mold machines from the early 60s.

Glad to hear your mom is finished with her first round. Hope it does what it needs to do for her.
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SS,
I really felt this update in my bones. The negative thoughts and feelings can be so pervasive in our MLCers - I don’t know if that’s specific to MLC or if it more broadly applies to depression. There are a lot of blurred lines between MLC and depression. It’s a hard thing to see - the “glass half empty” approach to life. Even when they recognize that tendency in themselves and try to overcome it, negativity is in many situations their first response. I know that early in her MLC, W talked about how deeply she felt things - and she said that because I hadn’t experienced the “downs” that she experiences, I couldn’t really understand joy. We never talked about that again, but I came to the realization that she couldn’t be more wrong… my emotional range may not be as broad, but that doesn’t make my emotions any less deeply felt than hers, or any less valid. And the same is true for you, and I am glad you thoroughly realize it… you are, indeed, the master of your own life.

I hope that your mom’s treatment has been successful and that she continues to do well. And I hope that you have a fantastic vacation later in the year; not that I have any doubt that you will.
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Hi C  ;D and OR  8)

Oh yes Offroad..... the Pinball Hall of Fame, one of my favorite places!! I go each time I visit (sometimes twice). If I lived there, I'd be volunteering to fix machines (maybe it's a good thing I don't live there..... HA!!!!).  I think it's hilarious that the crowds parted for you at Treasure Island....  8)

Yes that depression C.... it's so strong, and lasts so long. I can't imagine life like that. They need a rewiring for sure, how sad that whatever happened to them damaged them in such a way.

Journaling:
More and more W is trying to help....... cleaning the floor, walking the little dog (shock!!!), trying to talk in deeper conversations, empathy for others, checking in, offering to help, saying bye...... it really gives the possible impression that here is a person attempting to break out of the shell. Maybe she will, or maybe the turtle will retreat again...... doesn't really matter either way..... what will happen, will happen.
She's hard at work on her second book, and I think it's better than the 1st (much shorter, and illustrated this time). I see this and think "Hmmmmm, look at that.... she's trying again instead of being knocked down". Really good. More self confidence than was there before, and she's seemingly less risk averse about her dreams and goals. Good. Little steps, little steps.... they all add up over time.

She's about to go on her next vacation to South America and I get three weeks off. Good for me!!  ;D I've gotten so used to being alone, I enjoy it. Just me and the little dog. Not that her presence is trying or anything like that (it's easy), but only dealing with yourself is even easier (HA!!!).  :P
Maybe she'll rent her condo while she's out there, but she will be staying at it (part of the time, the whole time? I don't know.... it doesn't matter).
I think if she had her way, she'd quit her job and just float between here and there..... not a care in the world, just in her own world. I think that's her desire (but I could be wrong). I think she has found safety, and now she's searching for purpose...... and hasn't found it.... yet.
An interesting thing is: she's not biting at the bit to go down there. In the past, she'd be counting the days. This time I'll mention it, and it's almost like she has forgotten about it..... she remembers and then is happy that a break is coming up for her.  :o
Of course there has been no indication of wanting to join me on any of my trips (she hasn't asked, and I haven't offered). She has this trip set and another for the end of the year.

I think she is going to learn a lot of important things this year. She's gotten a lot of what she wanted, and dreamed about...... she worked hard for it too..... struggled. Now that it's here, what will she find? What is at the end of the rainbow? A pot of gold like she thought? Or (uh oh!!!!) part of herself waiting there in a leprechaun outfit? HA!!!!  :o HA!!

On to me!!! I worked on the pinball machine!!! And I didn't fix it!!! HAHAHAHAAHAH!!! But I did learn, and that's enough. I'll do better next time.
Try, fail, learn, try again. What a happy life.
I'm so anxious for another trip somewhere. I don't know why it's becoming more and more important, but it is.

****Update (tonight)****
Oh boy......
As always I start writing and a day or two goes by before I hit post :D HA!!
Big. Big. Big.

W comes home today...... she is frustrated, and lets me know that come the end of the year, once her bonus is paid out.... she intends to quit her job.
She's going to cash out her stock at the company, and completely try to make her dream work. Wow.
Lots of layers to this, and lots of potential effects and repercussions.

On one hand, this is wonderful: The corporate world has not been good for her. While she has been successful, the cost has been very high - especially in our M. So much time simply lost. She has no desire to do it again at a different company, so I believe this is the end of her recreating MIL's life (work life anyway).... and that has taken a lifetime to happen. To see what used to be the #1 importance to her, now ready to be discarded.... is amazing. Of course it also has a factor in that she has hit the glass ceiling in the corporate world, and she absolutely hates it. She has raged against that for a couple years now. I think maybe she is ready to stop fighting. She hasn't been winning on that front since MLC started.

Would I like to see her finally calm down and just be herself? Sure. I wanted that 12 years ago. I wanted that 20 years ago. In so many ways (looking back) I can't help but feel robbed, but I know I wasn't the only one...... she was robbed too.
She says "I'm probably going to make a lot less money..... but I don't care anymore".
Now I make enough to support us both, but it will be much tighter.... and that's not a bad thing potentially. I absolutely want her to get her shot at a dream..... everyone should have their shot.... and she hasn't taken hers. Totally get that, and I support it. I want her to succeed and have the internal value and "light" that every person should have. I used to think (way back) that her doing that in the corporate world accomplish that need (it's what she said - and I believed her), but of course that wasn't the case..... I didn't know, and she didn't either.

Fast forward to now...... I'm fine with her trying. That's great. I think she's getting closer and closer to being healed, and the layers of the onion have been getting peeled one after another.... maybe we're getting closer to the core, maybe there's several more layers to go. These are good things. I have dreamed of seeing a healed, complete, and happy W..... lord knows I have waited so long to see the day.

On to the other hand.....because we have to keep our eyes open and not shut....  :-[
She's getting close to mid-40's...... so she is going to be more independent, less family focused (which she wasn't to begin with once her career took over), and more internalized. This is all normal, I'm not raging against that..... but the time in life when the opposite of those things should have been common, that has been missed..... skipped.... wasted. I always thought when she got "better" then we would catch up on all that time. I don't believe this will be the case anymore, because time is the one thing which can't be replaced..... and I see that time has passed by. Several things (understanding) are clicking into place, I'm seeing things in a different light. SIL's niece and nephews are moving away..... they sorta anchored W in her family.... and it's a big thing to see them fly away. SIL for that matter now has a job and is throwing herself into it..... SIL no longer seems to really care too much about her H or what he thinks, she certainly isn't chasing him at all like she did before.. just like my mom did at that age (the need for purpose).... and I remember how much mom and dad drifted apart for years after that: the time for babies over, new priorities took hold..... new independence. I remember how hard that was for dad. I've seen the same thing in W's aunts..... all of them (years ago of course) and how all their M's suffered (but remained intact). I look at the women my age and a little older at work - they are all in the middle of relationship issues.... most have D'ed, but all are pursuing new interests..... radical changes. One of my closest co-workers told me the other day she's retiring early to become a real estate agent. Her dream..... which she just figured out several months ago ( :o )..... she told me her H was blindsided and is concerned. She said she "has to do it, she's not happy in her job". Not MLC.... just age. None of this is to disparage..... it's normal. No sense in fighting it, just to accept and understand it.

I know what I want..... and what men want (yeah yeah... generalization again. HAHAHAHAHA!!!). Men/I want someone to be crawling all over us. To be kind and warm and interested. To be a team, to share, to build and to help. I've read how the chemicals change, and the binding hormones grow weaker..... it would explain a lot. The drive to make and keep families together isn't as needed once there isn't going to be babies anymore. There has to be a deeper connection to hold it together, some sort of value that lasts beyond..... which I always assumed was love, and love was all you need. HA!!! The thing about men/I is: we don't change. We are static thru life. Our wants and needs don't really change.... and I like that about us. Simplicity. Maybe how driven we are changes, maybe we slow down a bit..... or maybe not..... but the core is unchanged.

Much to think about..... much to unravel. What life looks like as time goes on, and if you're ok with it or not (not that you can stop it  ;D ). There are several guys I work with closely (all a little older) who are D'ed.... and they never want to marry again. Girlfriends.... sure.... marriage.... nope. I've heard the same from women (less though) and plenty here on HS who say that. It is a curious thought and question.... the changing of R's over time.... and how we adjust..... what we want.... and what we do with what we find inside ourselves.
Men/I are driven naturally to provide, protect and care for.... that's natural. It was always a worthy goal to build something: a family, a life, a future..... what happens when one person (if they are healed, sane and normal), is no longer is interested in building? What happens when there's nothing left to build and the blueprint is complete? What happens when the girl doesn't need saving anymore? I wonder. I know for me the need to be heroic is so deeply ingrained..... I can't imagine not being called upon to be as such..... but what happens when there isn't a call for help anymore? What happens to us men? I know so many men over my life (older than I am now) who expressed to me how they were no longer useful anymore. Dozens.... hundreds..... maybe several hundred. I never understood this..... but I'm starting to understand it now. My, my, how time teaches.
 
I remember looking at the old people growing up with their golden anniversaries, and how much they still seemed to be in love, and how much they enjoyed the company of the other. Was it because they selected this as what was most important? Or was there less "other things" to pull them apart? I wonder. Perhaps they were blessed with simpler times, maybe they knew something we don't, or maybe they were just built of sterner stuff.
How simple and effortless they made it seem to my young and impressionable mind.

Such thoughts..... I know they will increase as the ultimate choosing gets closer and the end of MLC draws near. I know W will be having the same thoughts, need to make the same choices. It fills me with equal parts of wonder and dread (and peace?). Not just for what she could choose, but for what I could.
As my sister would say: "Creepy":o

One day at a time,  ;)

-SS 
         
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M - 46
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BD - 27th April 2019
Start of Shadow - Feb 2012

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I know what I want..... and what men want (yeah yeah... generalization again. HAHAHAHAHA!!!). Men/I want someone to be crawling all over us. To be kind and warm and interested. To be a team, to share, to build and to help. I've read how the chemicals change, and the binding hormones grow weaker..... it would explain a lot. The drive to make and keep families together isn't as needed once there isn't going to be babies anymore. There has to be a deeper connection to hold it together, some sort of value that lasts beyond..... which I always assumed was love, and love was all you need. HA!!! The thing about men/I is: we don't change. We are static thru life. Our wants and needs don't really change.... and I like that about us. Simplicity. Maybe how driven we are changes, maybe we slow down a bit..... or maybe not..... but the core is unchanged.

So true (LOL) .... I was actually reading about this elsewhere not so long back.  It is very thought provoking, especially how both man and woman need to act mindfully to thrust the relationship over the stagnation phase that comes as we all age.

Alvin
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At time of BD.... Me: 43, XW: 41
Kids: G19,G18,G14,G12,S5
Together - 20½ Years, Married 19 Years

BD ("I don't love you"): Feb 2019, 
BD2 ("I don't want to fix this marriage."), Mar 2020
D filed May 2020, D finalized Dec 2020
I have moved on, and am in new relationship.

Lessons from Stoicism and REBT helped me to exit the chaos zone and become a better person. 

"Happiness and freedom begin with a clear understanding of one principle: Some things are within our control, and some things are not. - Epictetus"

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Quote from: Standing Strong

I remember looking at the old people growing up with their golden anniversaries, and how much they still seemed to be in love, and how much they enjoyed the company of the other. Was it because they selected this as what was most important? Or was there less "other things" to pull them apart? I wonder. Perhaps they were blessed with simpler times, maybe they knew something we don't, or maybe they were just built of sterner stuff.

Hi Standing Strong,

I am happy for you that there is proggress, even little step you are managing very well.
One thing I understand from the age that we are throught is switching from "to have" to "to be". So you continue to build, but not outside, inside yourself.

What is positive with the new move from your W is that she understood she can not "have" everything. Giving up is sometimes becoming wiser.

Need for purpose ? yes that makes sense at the end of the tunnel, and after giving up with career.

Quote from: Standing Strong
I think she is going to learn a lot of important things this year. She's gotten a lot of what she wanted, and dreamed about...... she worked hard for it too..... struggled. Now that it's here, what will she find? What is at the end of the rainbow? A pot of gold like she thought? Or (uh oh!!!!) part of herself waiting there in a leprechaun outfit? HA!!!!  :o HA!!
very fun the gold and leprechaun ! You make my day ! At a time a person in MLC must stop fleeing and face herself.
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M 44, W43. Married 18 years, together 21
3 children D17, D15, S6
OM discovered Dec 22, BD Jan 23 (few days after)
W living at home 16 mths post BD, then keeps moving in & out "for work" in foreign country.
Aimer, c'est donner sans attendre de retour et tout acte est prière, s'il est don de soi (Antoine de Saint Exupéry)
Love means to give without expecting return, and every act is a prayer if it is a self-gift. (thanks OffRoad !)

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Well, I guess time will show if she a) follows through on that and b) if it is just another attempt at an external ‘magic happy fix’ that MLCers seem to invest their energy in or something more solid for her.

If she does do it, will you need to adapt your current financial arrangements? I get the sense that you are not overly concerned about money or seeing it as a significant risk but, given that she has recently bought an ‘investment’ apartment (not sure if this is just in her name or jointly) and is now talking about removing most of her half of your collective stable income, it would seem reasonable to me that you might choose to do so.
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T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.


"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

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Hi T, FH, and Alvin  :D

Journaling:

Super busy week.....barely time to think..... but such a great week!!!!
I actually don't have much to write about W (directly) this time...... she's been frustrated with work and that hasn't changed.... nor has her plans for her next vacation to South America, other than she will be staying at the condo the whole time. I guess I'm curious how much time she spends with MIL, but something inside tells me she is going to wean herself away from clinging to her. Not sure what that means, but I'm going to take it as a sign she is healing and her mommy issues are fading. Of course I could be wrong.... I'll find out later, or not at all.  ;)

This week I booked a vacation for myself in Sept..... going back to Orlando for the haunted houses (just like last year)....... I'm so looking forward to it. I feel so run down at work...... tired, but not tired. It's so nice to do something for yourself..... but after I booked it, I was reminded how it felt last time to see new things and wish someone (W) was there to take it in too. Well..... not this time...... someday, just not this time.
I think something is coming full circle inside me (how weird right?). You start out..... it's so hard and strange to do things alone..... time passes (years) and you get used to being alone..... you miss having a someone, but you get used to not having that, and you enjoy the time away....... now something is switching, like a door opening just a creak..... I wonder when it will widen, but I can say that I'm not opposed to not being alone on a trip..... whereas before I know it would be very difficult and not want that. HA!!!

Today I finally got around to fixing the pinball machine.  :D And I asked W to help me...... she jumped out of bed, and ran to where it is....... we fixed it together. It took twice to get it right...... we did one thing, and it was working.... then it broke again   :P..... then we did something else after a pause.... and now it's fixed again. Instead of her getting frustrated and mad..... she had patience, and acted like (gasp) a normal person. And she was a BIG help (small hands have a much easier time in small crowded places). Once it was done, we played together for an hour....... she kept going and going, wanting to keep playing. I taught her what the lights meant, and what the goals were. As she learned, she enjoyed it more. It's not just about mashing the flippers like she assumed...... HA!!!!  ;D After a bit she was pointing things out "look this thing is open now, shoot that" and she was getting the hang of the rules and objectives. She beat me on a couple games.... and no frustration like the 1st time I took her to play. She just had fun, and when it drained..... she was a good sport, laughed and smiled.
What improvement!!!
I'm using it as therapy (part of the intention the whole time). Get her to play instead of being serious and stuck. Let her figure out it's ok to lose.... and also the opportunity to WIN. Yeah it's minor.... but it's safe.  ;)

Well, it was a wonderful week. Now if that machine will stay fixed.  ;D

One day at a time,

-SS
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M - 46
Together 28 years, M 25
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BD - 27th April 2019
Start of Shadow - Feb 2012

 

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Any information, stories, examples, articles, or testimonials on this website do not constitute a guarantee, or prediction regarding the outcome of an individual situation. Reading and/or posting at this website does not constitute a professional relationship between you and the website author, volunteer moderators or mentors or other community members. The moderators and mentors are peer-volunteers, and not functioning in a professional capacity and are therefore offering support and advice based solely upon their own experience and not upon legal, medical, or mental health training.