Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Paula Renaye - A Movie Alone

By Paula Renaye


If you've read my book and blog, you know about Rebound Guy--the name I affectionately give the man I leaped into an intense and tumultuous relationship with immediately after my marriage ended. Well, when I was trying to separate from him--and figure out whys and wherefores of my personal rock bottom--I repeatedly found myself reduced to a puddle over the strangest things. For instance, you have no idea the courage it took for me to go to a movie alone.



No, I am not kidding. I know that may sound absurd to some of you, but let me assure you it was a very big deal to me. I'd never been to a movie alone in my life and the thought of it was not only absurd, but shameful. Movies were for dates--for couples--something you only did with someone else. I'd literally gone to hundreds of movies with my husband before we married--I know how many because I kept a list (seriously). So, in a way, movies defined dating and being a couple for me. 



Thus (follow along with my twisted thinking here), since I was not part of a couple, going to a movie alone would broadcast that sad fact to the world and then everyone would know my ugly truth--that I was unwanted and unlovable. Clearly, something had to be very wrong with me that I had to go to the movies alone. You get the idea. Extrapolate that on down into whatever self-loathing level you want to--I did. 



Consciously, I knew those thoughts were ridiculous. But there's the thing. Even though I knew my thinking wasn't logical, the feelings were so intense that I couldn't disconnect the two. At least I had enough awareness to realize that I had to do something to break free. Since going to the movies alone had triggered the meltdown, maybe it could also snap me out of it. So, I gritted my teeth and made myself go to the theater.



I can't tell you how exposed, vulnerable and deeply sad I felt as I walked across that parking lot on that cold winter day. I felt like the only person in the whole entire world who didn't have anyone--who didn't have a partner to love them and do things with them. I felt so small and alone, and I wished I could make myself as invisible and insignificant as I felt.

Everywhere I looked, I saw couples, walking hand-in-hand, staring lovingly into each other's eyes as they skipped blissfully up to the ticket window. I imagined all kinds of scenarios for what those strangers were feeling and how wonderful their lives were. I also imagined they could tell just by looking at me how much y life sucked. I felt like the whole world was staring at me, thinking, "Look at that poor pitiful woman over there, all alone. Wonder what's wrong with her that no one loves her?"

In spite of all these thoughts of self-loathing bouncing around in my head, I soldiered on and bought my ticket then slunk into the dark theater as fast as I could. I found a seat off to the side where I hoped no one would sit near me. As the lights dimmed, I began to cry. In that moment, I felt so alone. I felt I had nothing--was worthy of nothing--simply because I didn't have a man sitting beside me. What was wrong with me? What did all those other people have that I didn't? What was I missing? Why couldn't I have someone and be happy too?

Oh, it was a lovely pity party. However, as pathetic as it was, it was also a turning point for me. Somewhere during my wallowing, I actually started paying attention to the movie. And when it was over, I realized that I had survived--I was still alive. Going to a movie alone hadn't killed me. Stranger yet, I had actually enjoyed it!

Now, if you're looking for a magic bullet to fix what's wrong in your life, start paying attention to your thoughts and words. I know, I say it all the time, but it's true. Look at what I was telling myself. Talk about limiting beliefs--yeow!

Facing your emotions--and the fears and beliefs that are controlling them--is only hard at first. As I wrote in a recent tweet:
Once you own those thoughts, feelings and fears that you've worked so hard to avoid, they no longer own you.
* * * *
Paula Renaye is The Tough Love BFF Coach, empowerment speaker and five-time award-winning author. Her new book, Living the Life You Love--The No-Nonsense Guide to Total Transformation will be in stores in September. Read more at http://paularenaye.com
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Books Sold - 6 Nov 2011 to 31 May 2012

Some of you have asked me for my total number of books sold to evaluate KDP Select so here it is. Bear in mind, that results will vary based on genre and author. Good luck and remember, Keep Moving Forward.

Total - 120,836

1. Excuse Me, My Brains Have Stepped Out
Amazon Kindle - 42,559
Paperback -
Smashwords -

2. Frequent Traveller
Amazon Kindle - 35277
Paperback -
Smashwords -

3. Dora's Essentials - Books, Blogs & Smiles 1
Amazon Kindle - 462
Smashwords -

4. Mirror Me Martha (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle - 281
Smashwords -

5. Drive On Hope (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle - 190
Smashwords -

6. Blog-A-Licious Directory 2012
Amazon Kindle - 1
Smashwords -

7. Pandora's Reading Room 1
Amazon Kindle -
Paperback - N/A

8. The Cat That Barked (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle -

9. Dora's Essentials - Examining Anxiety
Amazon Kindle -

10. Dora's Essentials - Books, Blogs & Smiles 2
Amazon Kindle -

11. Elevenses from Around the World
Amazon Kindle -

12. Genetically Modified Foods vs. Sustainability
Amazon Kindle -

Blog-A-Licius - Sherbet Blossom

SherbetBlossom

Blog-A-Licious

Dealightfully Frugal

Blog-A-Licious - The Few, The Proud, The Wife

Blog-A-Licious

My Soul Slippers

Blog-A-Licous - Textbook Mommy

Blog-A-Licious - Blue Frogs Legs

Blog-A-Licious - Pretty All True

Pretty All True

Blog-A-Licious - tbaoo

tbaoo

Blog-A-Licious

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Blog-A-Licious - The Invisible Art

Blog-A-Licious - Rediscovering Domesticity

Rediscovering Domesticity

Blog-A-Licious - Quiver Full

Blog-A-Licious - Cori's Big Mouth

Blog-A-Licious - Great Fun

Greatfun4kids

Blog-A-Licious - Busy Wife

Blog-A-Licious - Steps To Happiness

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Blog-A-Licious - Toby & Max


Blog-A-Licious - Amelie

Raising Amelie

Blog-A-Licious - Peas In A Pod

Blog-A-Licious - Riley

Blognostics - Poetry

BlogNostics

My Awards - September 2010

My Awards - September 2010
Awarded By Jo Frances

My Awards - May 2011

My Awards - May 2011
Awarded By Alejandro Guzman

My Awards - May 2011

My Awards - May 2011
Awarded by Kriti Mukherjee

My Awards - April 2011

My Awards - April 2011
Awarded By Roy Durham

My Awards - June 2011

My Awards - June 2011
Awarded By Sulekha Rawat

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