Thursday, January 29, 2009

Finding faith and love in our "shack"

"There are times when you choose to believe something that would normally be considered absolutely irrational. It doesn't mean that it is actually irrational, but it surely is not rational. Perhaps there is suprarationality: reason beyond the normal definitions of fact or data-based logic; something that only makes sense if you can see the bigger picture of reality. Maybe that's where faith fits in."
quoted from The Shack by William P. Young

I loved that quote because that is what A Course in Miracles says about judgment. That we do not see the "bigger picture of reality" but instead only see our own perception.

I am currently reading The Shack as it had been recommended to me by so many. The first time I heard about it, I was already intrigued. Apparently, the book is known for taking "God out of the box", or changing our perspective on the big guy in the sky.

I was waiting for the book to find me. Does that happen to everyone? Where books find you? I never saw the book, anywhere, though it was on the bestseller list. It finally found me while I was at the airport a few weeks ago.

I'm enjoying this book from a deeply spiritual perspective. I am going to pull some quotes from the book and highly recommend it as a good spiritual read. The quotes are from God.

"Most birds were created to fly. Being grounded for them is a limitation within their ability to fly, not the other way around. You, on the other hand, were created to be loved. So for you to live as if you were unloved is a limitation, not the other way around."


"Living unloved is like clipping a bird's wings and removing its ability to fly."

"Pain has a way of clipping our wings and keeping us from being able to fly. And if left unresolved for very long, you can almost forget that you were ever created to fly in the first place."


"All love and relationship is possible for you only because it already exists within Me, within God myself. Love is not the limitation; love is the flying. I am love."

Regarding free will and tragedy in our lives:

"...there are millions of reasons to allow pain and hurt and suffering rather than to eradicate them, but most of those reasons can only be understood within each person's story. I am not evil. You are the ones who embrace fear and pain and power and rights so readily in your relationships. But your choices are also not stronger than my purposes, and I will use every choice you make for the ultimate good and the most loving outcome."


"You see, broken humans center their lives around things that seem good to them, but that will neither fill them nor free them."


I think those of us that have been through divorce or some other loss, feel that this next statement is true.

"When a disaster happens, those same people will turn against the false powers they trusted.
(those external seemingly "good" things.) In their disappointment, they either become softened toward me or they become bolder in their independence."

"You try to make sense of the world in which you live based on a very small and incomplete picture of reality."

In the next part of the book, the main character is invited into a beautiful but seemingly wild and unorganized garden. He soon realizes that it may look like a mess from his perspective, but from above, it actually creates a very organized and perfect pattern. Such is the story of our perception vs. true perception.

The book centers around a "shack" where the main character's child is brutally murdered after she was abducted. (No I am not giving the story away. You can read this part on the back cover.) He is invited back to the shack where he meets a strange cast of characters who claim to be God.

Isn't it interesting that sometimes we have to return to our darkest places to find that once abandoned relationship with who we truly are?

I believe it is possible, to find faith, love and forgiveness in our seeming hell. I love that this book takes us on a journey to prove that.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Wrasslin'

My kids love wrestling (or wrasslin' as we call it here in these parts).

We've had snow days (or ice days as we call 'em here in these parts) for two days in a row. I'm glued to my laptop, trying to focus on work and yes, the occasional blog, and the girls have been making themselves busy.

They've been watching Looney Tunes on DVD. Kill the wabbit! is their favorite thing to say now.

They've listened to the soundtrack from Mamma Mia at least 6 times in the past 24 hours. They're dancing, singing or jumping on the trampoline while enjoying the music.

They've had their quiet reading and/or nap time. They've played Barbie, My Little Pony and Littlest Pet Shop.

Can I just say THANK GOD they have each other?

They've bugged me endlessly for snacks, meals and treats. Thankfully, though I'm in dire need of a grocery store visit, we've had enough snacks and meals to get us through the icy cold lock down of the past few days.

But their most favorite thing of all has been when I decide to take a break and wrestle with them.

It starts innocently enough. They recognize the "Mommy's gonna get you!" look on my face and instantly they both erupt in giggles. I pounce on one and then the other one pounces on me. They're laughing hysterically, screaming their glee through gritted teeth and begging me to tickle them.

The one that really gets 'em going is the "invisible tickle".

I don't even have to touch them. The mere threat of a tickle will have them breathlessly snickering.

My dad wrestled with me and my siblings when we were kids too. When the ex and I were dating and married, we would frequently wrestle. I'll never forget the one time the ex pinned me in such a way that I could not escape. I immediately burst into frustrated tears until he let me go. Then I turned around and pinned him with an evil grin on my face. He never fell for the frustrated tears again after that.

Rose tries that same move with me and I'll let her go just enough to stop crying. Then she'll recover and try to pin me but I'm too much for her, even with Grace helping her along. I can still, at this point thankfully, pin them both and tickle them til their faces are red and the angel kisses begin to show again on their foreheads.

My girls wrestle each other nearly every day. I've witnessed them rolling around on the floor of their playroom, arms locked around each other and giant smiles on their faces. I am trying to teach them boundaries with each other. When one says "stop", the other one must obey. Respect each other. Be lovingly rough and be gently silly. Learn to respect when another says "no".

Wrestling is a form of love that I understand. I assume most parents do it and it was Single Parent Dad's post and adorable video that inspired me to write about it. Animals do it with their young to build strength, stamina, trust, courage, instinct and love.

Besides it had been a really long time since I heard Grace or Rose say to me, as they did last night,

"Mommy, we had lots of fun with you today."

Ice, snow, rain, or sunshine. I need to get my wrasslin' on more often!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

She is definitely my child

I found this in Rose's school backpack the other day.



I have a wonderful "me" vacation that I'm planning this year and when I mentioned it to my girls, they were upset that they are not going too.

"How about this," I offered them, "I can't afford to take you with me this year but maybe next year we can go to either DisneyWorld or... we could go to Mexico again."

Rose's response?

"MEXICO!!! Mexico would be sooooo much more relaxing."


---

Because kids say the darnedest things, and because this totally cracked me up, tell me something that a child in your life said or did that made you laugh or made you realize that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

Your turn. Go.

Monday, January 26, 2009

J always has the right tool


One morning last week, the girls somehow locked the door to their bathroom, left the light on inside, and closed the door. We have those weird locks where you push the button in next to the knob? I couldn't get it open and no screwdriver would fit into the tiny hole to unlock it.

In a pinch, my friend J always comes to my rescue.

For some reason, he always has the exact tool that I need to fix anything.

He was at the house within 15 minutes after I'd woken him from a deep sleep, and got the door open within 2 minutes of arriving at my door.

When I asked him how I could repay him (I owed him big for waking him up), he replied with a smile:

"I'd like you to write a blog post about my cock."

Maybe it was said in jest, but J, if you're reading, thank you sweetie! This one's for you!

---

Before I go there, let me just say that this isn't the first time I've noticed a man's fascination and pride at their (ahem) tool.

When I was married, we frequently spent time with two other couples. The girls and I would talk about life, kids, work, movies, spirituality, sex, music... you know the stuff you read about here on The Quest for T.

Our men, however, would be hanging out talking about who-knows-what but the topic would always come back to "the penis". It became a running joke and I finally dubbed it "Cock Talk".

**Switching to my Radio DJ voice**

Hey there ladies and gents, thank you for listening to Cock Talk where it's all cocks, all the time. If you're not calling to talk about cocks, don't call.


**back to normal voice**

Um. Yeah.

Personally, I don't blame the guys for being proud of it. I know if I had one, I'd be telling everyone about it too. But that's a whole other post now, isn't it?

---

In the nearly 24 years that I've known J, we were only lovers for a very short time. It is unfortunate, really, but we've both agreed that we make much better friends than boyfriend/girlfriend. We all have our reasons, right?

He is one of the best guys I know, never fails to make me laugh, knows everything about me, and is fully recognized as a part of my family. And when we had sex, I was so very impressed.

J is definitely the most well-hung man I have ever been with.

His cock is sheer perfection. The right girth, curve, length... to reach the g-spot with no effort whatsoever. He could very easily just lie there, let me climb on top, and I would orgasm in no time flat. Of course, he's not a "just lie there" kind of man.

He's very sensual and attentive too. He loves touch. One of his favorite things for me to do, we called "Love Face". I would "make love" to his face by kissing, licking, little biting nibbles, and slow caresses with my mouth, hands and face in a teasing sort of way. It would leave us both breathless and very turned on.

The man definitely has stamina! Wow. He could go for hours only pleasuring me. My favorite times were when he would lie on top of me, inside me, and just... not... move... I enjoyed the feeling of fullness and pleasure.

Then finally, his favorite place to release was on my back. (Men, you know we love that, don't you?)

Oh my... I may have to see if J wants to revisit the good old days and refresh my memory on his cock perfection.

He somehow always has the right tool that I need to fix anything.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

The Riddle that is "T"

I received an email last week from a man I was communicating with online in the fall 2007. We never actually met in person yet he recognized me, recently, at a local restaurant when I was out with the kids. He didn't say anything to me that night. Instead he looked up my old profile and our last correspondence and used that information to email me again. He actually responded to the last email I'd sent him, apparently still in his email archives.

It was just a wee bit creepy but I do remember he was a nice guy. The one thing that took my breath away was what I'd written in the last email I'd sent him, in August 2007:

"I'll be heading out next weekend to visit Dad and enjoy my 20th high school reunion. Can't even believe that!!!"

A LOT has happened since then - dad died 2 months later and I reconnected with Soldier in the weeks following my high school reunion.

His email prompted me to go back and look at my old profile. I was quite amused at my description of myself. Read on and let me know if you think it sounds like me after all:

---
WHO AM I: Well, I'm a lot of different things all rolled into one and quite comfortable being that way. I think Meredith Brooks said it best in her song Bitch:

I'm a bitch, I'm a lover
I'm a child, I'm a mother
I'm a sinner, I'm a saint
I do not feel ashamed
I'm your hell, I'm your dream
I'm nothing in between
You know you wouldn't want it any other way


I know myself very well and yet I'm still learning.

I know what I like and yet find myself surprised when I try something new.

I can't stand a man who will sit all day and watch football. Though I am originally from Louisiana and will always be a Saints fan.

I really don't enjoy sports on TV and yet I love baseball on the radio.

I listen to just about every type of music from classical, opera, musical theater and jazz to blues, alternative and pop and good old fashioned rock and roll. I can't stand country music or rap.

I'm particular and yet easy to get along with.

I can be opinionated and strong willed and then understand both sides of the story.

I am a planner (Capricorn) and yet love someone who will take the initiative to plan an evening at home, date or weekend.

I usually go for a certain look in a guy and yet I fully understand that either there's a connection or not.

I do believe in romance and yet I don't enjoy too much "sappiness".

I am very intense and passionate and yet the one of the kindest and most laid back of anyone you'll ever know.

I am wise, naive and always wanting to learn something new.

I am far from perfect, getting better at admitting it and putting my best foot forward at seeing the divine in everyone.

I am independent and looking for a companion who is confident, competent, knows who he is and doesn't mind letting me be me.

Think you can handle the riddle that is me?

WHAT INSPIRES ME: God, my kids, my mom, my children's laughter, my girlfriends, a good bottle of wine, trees, the ocean, the Internet, yoga, trying new foods, turtles (both the real ones and the chocolate ones), sitting down with a good book, great writing (books, lyrics, whatever!), Egyptian cotton sheets, art, movies, theater shows, scuba diving, learning about different cultures, the color red, a seafood dinner, romance, sunsets and sunrises, good conversation, candlelight, martinis, my feet in sand, quiet time, did I mention chocolate?, my body pillow, laughing, a nice long hug, spirituality, people who look you in the eyes when they're speaking with you, my herb garden, dogs, homeopathy, writing songs, good group energy, patience, honesty, confidence, trust, optimism, spontaneity, forgiveness, love.

---

I remember getting lots of attention on my profile until I posted the Meredith Brooks song lyrics. The guys that did respond after that told me that they LOVED that song!

Frankly, those were the guys I wanted to attract anyway.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Victoria's Secret

Today would have been my grandma Victoria's 95 birthday. My mother wanted to write a dedication in her honor.

So today, I give you.... Mom:

A DEDICATION TO MY MOTHER.

What else can I say, I think she was the best mom ever. Today is her birthday. She would have been 95, and she would be very mad at me if she knew I was going around telling everybody how old she was.

She always said that it was "VICTORIA'S SECRET".

She also said, if people wanted to know, they could visit her grave site and read it off of her tombstone. But I know if it was left up to her, there would not be any "dates" on her tombstone. She was just that way, and I never understood why.

I always thought she was so beautiful. I wish she could have seen herself through my eyes. She had the perfect smile, which she gave to all 3 of my children. I thank her for that.

My mom had 5 boys before I was born. She said that she prayed and prayed for a girl.

TA-DA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Me.

One other thing that she did was make a promise to God that I would be a NUN. Well------------I kind of went astray.

At the time, her sister had 2 daughters that were nuns. I guess that explains why she was so strict with me as I was trying to grow up. I didn't understand it then, but as I got out on my own, and had daughters of my own, I understood a lot better.

I don't want to say that my mom "never worked". She did not work outside the home, meaning she did not get up every morning and drive to work. That woman worked her butt off. She was raising a house full of kids, and back then, they didn't have inside bathrooms, washing machines, running water. It was one of her favorite stories to tell of how she got water up that hill, and where she had to haul it from. And on top of everything else, she stayed pregnant most of the time.

Her and dad were HARD CORE CATHOLICS. She did not believe in birth control. I was taught not to believe in it either.

HARK-----T!

Ha! If it was up to me, I would have had 3 more, but it takes 2 to tango.

My mom was a very stern woman. When she spoke, you stopped what you were doing, and you would listen to what was being said. When she got mad, you knew you were in trouble. She would make us go outside and pick a switch off the bushes, and bring it back in the house so she could beat the crap out of you. Oh, but don't pick a little switch, because you had to go back out and get another one, and I think it hurt worse after you tried to trick her. If you tried to run, she never ran after you, she would always say, "You have to come home to supper", and that's when you really got it. Because by then, you would have thought that she forgot, but hell no, she had been simmering all day. And on top of that, by that time, daddy was home and you got it twice. Daddy did not use a switch, he used his belt. One thing I can say, my daddy never whipped me.

He let my mom do it. I guess he thought he would have hurt me. Hell, he would have killed me.

I don't think there was ever a day that my daddy didn't work. He worked at the air force base for years, then ended up at a local Army post where he retired. We always had food on the table, and we ate what was put in front of us. My daddy raised cows, chickens, pigs, grew peanuts. We had a huge garden every year. My mom always canned fruits and vegetables, so we had fresh stuff all winter long. Plus whatever my brothers would kill in the woods. Half of the time, we did not know what it was, we just knew it tasted good, because my mom could make road kill into a gourmet meal.

Not that she ever did. HMMMM, OR DID SHE?

Anyway, we all had our chores to do. No one was lazy in my family. My mom started giving us chores I think before we could walk good. I knew that I had to have my bed fixed before I left for school every morning. It must be why to this day, every morning when I get out of bed, I turn right around and fix my bed. That is one thing that has stuck with me all these years.

We had to feed the cows, chickens, slop the hogs. In the summer, we had to get up early and get in the garden and hoe. We had what seemed like miles and miles of rows to hoe. I will never forget the feel of fresh plowed dirt between my toes. Even now, when I am out and about, I will see a fresh plowed field, I look over and just smile. I usually tell my granddaughter that I would like to run through the field barefoot, and she looks at me like I have lost my mind. It was a different place, and different time - a better time. I guess that is why me and my brother get on the phone sometimes and talk for hours about "THE GOOD OLE' DAYS" and they were certainly that.

I would not take a million dollars for the way I was brought up, because I was already the richest person in the world.

I had everything. Wonderful parents, crazy brothers and sister, a HOME.

You can't go back, but you can keep all the memories in your heart. I thank God for all of that, but on a day like today, it's kind of sad because I REALLY MISS MY MOM.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM, you have got to be in Heaven.

After daddy died, I know how much you missed him. It took only a year, and he came and got you. I hope you two are together. You would always tell me that you didn't mind dying, it was just that you stay dead for so long. You were a trip. The last time I was home, I walked in your bedroom and I could smell you. I walked in your closet and ran my hands on your clothes which are still hanging there. I miss you.

In my mom's last days, she had to be put in a nursing home. I would visit her every chance I got. It would really scare me when she would tell me that she saw daddy a lot. I did not know that your time was near. So when old people tell you these things, don't think they are crazy, there is something to this.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY AGAIN MOM, I LOVE YOU, AND MISS YOU LIKE CRAZY.

Your daughter.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A second date?

After my first date with Trainer, I was dreading going out with him again. It felt awkward to talk to him over the phone. I was remembering how irritated he seemed at his dating history and his exes. I remembered the very strange ending to our date.

And it was my weekend with the kids.

I called my mother to spend the day with us. We took the kids to see a movie and she offered to watch them for me, if I wanted to go out with Trainer. I didn't really want to go but the phone was ringing and it was him, calling to make a final plan for the evening.

My mom always says that it was the times she didn't want to go somewhere that she had the most fun.

So, I told him I'd meet him for yet another movie.

We decided to see Marley and Me. I was thankful for the movie so that we didn't really talk much. Neither of us touched each other this time. I was definitely not going to show interest in anything other than friendship. I was going to let him be the man!

After the afternoon movie, we decided to go to dinner. Oh! One thing that I've neglected to mention about our first and second dates....

On both dates, we ate at restaurants, at his suggestion, where I had last dined with Soldier.

I had literally not stepped foot in either restaurant since eating there with Soldier. Talk about ghosts and weird coincidences!!

This time, I was pleasantly surprised. Trainer and I were both moved by the movie and our conversation flowed effortlessly over dinner. I was happy to be creating another memory at this restaurant so that I could "record over" the previous one.

We walked around the shops again and made our way to a chocolate shop for some hot cocoa. I didn't have much time as I needed to get back home. He seemed much more relaxed and even joked around about some of my forwardness from our first date. I was more toned down and not nearly as forward as I had been before. I was resigned to whatever would happen.

He walked me to my car and enveloped me in a huge hug. He was looking at me as if he wanted to kiss me. I gave him a friendly quick peck on the lips, nothing fancy, and bid him farewell.

I think it has been a very long time since Trainer has dated someone. We did have a good time and it would be fun to go out again.

The "click" wasn't there. I can certainly see that we could be great friends who get together once in a while. We do enjoy talking to each other. I'm not sure we'd be great at dating each other though.

----

I am surprised at this because I have never really dated before. My experience has been to meet, connect with, get to know someone and then go out on dates. Trainer and I didn't really know each other prior to our first date, hence the awkwardness.

I now see that in order to decide whether or not someone is dateworthy, you should definitely go out on more than one date. (Unless the first date was horrendous!)

I guess this single girl's learning more and more about how to be a single girl.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

One and (probably) only political post

I usually refuse to blog about politics. Of the two topics you're never supposed to talk about in conversation, I'd rather talk religion than politics.

I don't like all the bad-mouthing, finger-pointing and all the ugliness it takes for people to decide who they want to win an election. The candidates look childish to me with their blaming tactics and mud-slinging.

I don't like politics but I love history. History, obviously affected by politics, intrigues me. We can learn from history.

Maybe its just campaigning that I don't like.

---

Speaking of history, I've noticed posters of Obama for purchase. I've even considered buying one as a keepsake. When I initially considered this, it brought to mind my grandma.

Grandma (Mom's mom) was a good Catholic lady who went to church every Sunday, said her rosary every night and had pictures of Jesus and John F. Kennedy all over the house.

Yep, John F. Kennedy.

I always thought that was so strange. I mean, yes, sure he was a handsome man. Sure he was a very influential president but pictures all around the house? It never made sense to me.

Until now.





















---

Honestly, I didn't know who I was going to vote for during this presidential election. I watched the debates, as painful as they were for me to sit through, and I still could go either way.

I can usually see both sides to most things. This makes it difficult for me to vote unless one candidate completely turns me off.

True, I am liberal in almost every sense of the word. I am a hippy chick from way back. I don't believe war is the answer. I use natural medicine and buy organic. I compost and teach my kids about being environmentally friendly. I believe in hope and love. I believed in Obama's middle class values and the fact that he was raised by a single mom. He seemed respectful towards women and people of all values, races and creeds. I loved that he was even a bit naive... perhaps this country needed someone who wasn't jaded with Washington politics. It would seem the logical choice would be to vote for Barack Obama.

But I have also supported and loved a soldier at war over the past 14.5 months. I was privy to many things that were actually happening in Iraq that the press doesn't always talk about. I listened to Soldier's many rants about why we shouldn't pull out of Iraq. I have a few friends who own small businesses and were afraid of the cost of Obama's healthcare plan. I didn't like that the Democratic convention spoke of our current world in gloom and doom terms, as if President Bush did nothing but screw everything up! Considering all of those things, it would seem McCain would have been a good choice for my vote too.

My .02 about W: I believe that everyone is doing their best with what they know. I am not in his shoes. I try not to judge. Yes, there are MANY things he's said or done that I don't agree with but I have no idea what it takes to be the President of the United States.

Then there was Sarah Palin. She amazed me with her accomplishments and no nonsense attitude. But then, over time, she started to turn me off with her constant flirting (yep, it takes one to know one) and adamant refusals to answer the questions posed to her at the debate.

There was one thing that finally changed my mind for good. It was the R&R weekend with Soldier.

After I saw what war could do to a sensitive, loving, and strong man... my decision was made.

I early-voted that same week after Soldier left my house. After I'd witnessed Post Traumatic Stress Disorder at its worst. After I saw him swaying from frightened and clingy to aloof and distant. After he nearly broke down because he had to say goodbye to me and "go back to hell."

I stood crying at the polls as I observed the greatness of this country. Men and women of different races all standing in lines waiting to choose our next president. How fortunate are we? How amazing for those that fought before us to win this right to vote?! How amazing that Soldier is in another country fighting for those same rights for a whole different group of people?!

My tears fell on the voting screen as my fingers chose Barack Obama. Silently, I whispered to Soldier, "This is for you baby."

---

When I listened to Obama's inauguration speech yesterday, these words confirmed for me that I voted for the right man.

"To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society's ills on the West — know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy. To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist. "


My friend Jim asked,

"Can you imagine how different the world would be today if Bush had said these same words on September 12th, 2001?"

It is easy to say that now. Hindsight is 20/20. But still... what a wonderful thought to ponder. ...

What if we had reached out in love instead of attacking back? Isn't that what we teach our children?

Mama Dharma did it. So did Dadshouse. It is possible on a much bigger scale.

In following those examples, I pledge to use compassion and forgiveness instead of anger, fear and hate.

What's your pledge?

Here's to hope! I am hopeful that Obama will do his best. I think that is all any of us could wish for.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Fingers on my frets

I've got it bad for bass players.

I always have. I've noticed when I'm enjoying a live band, I'm usually intently focused on the bass player, watching hands along the frets of the long neck and I'm sighing. To see a man finger those thick heavy strings?

Oh yeah.

I mean think about it: fingers moving in perfect rhythm to the beat... actually driving the beat?

What's not to love?!

The kids and I went out to dinner at a local BBQ dive and stumbled across a blues jam.

Oh how the blues gets into my soul and moves my body from the inside out!!!

Mr Bass-man... you rocked our socks!

The funny thing is, I can see you walking down the street and not think anything of you. But when you strap that beautiful bass around your neck and your magic fingers glide effortlessly over the strings, I'm mesmerized!

As we enjoyed the bluesy rhythms and chords, with my Grace doing her natural dance technique - that looks strangely like pole dancing (no I didn't teach her) - I thought to myself, yes, this is indeed worthy of a blog post.

A tribute to the bass player.

I love far too many to mention so let's start with the hottest ones first:

Sting... I love Sting. I actually have an extremely large subway poster of Sting in the vaulted area of my kitchen. No kidding. Everyone should have Sting in the kitchen. It makes me smile.

Have I ever mentioned that I met Sting? I actually told him that I was in love with his mind. He seemed confused by my statement so I went on to tell him that the rest of him wasn't bad either. Yes, I flirt with Sting too. He laughed and pulled me into him for a hug and kiss... on his unshaven face. *sigh*

Oh yeah, he does play a mean bass too!

(Sting's photo came from here.)

Then there's Sting's son Joe Sumner of Fiction Plane. Like father, like son, Joe's bass playing and vocals are so similar to his father's. I met him once too. I don't think he enjoys being compared to his famous dad.

(Joe's photo came from here.)


I think the very first bass player I fell for was John Taylor of Duran Duran. He had me at age 12... and dammit if he still doesn't make my heart beat fast. He makes 48 years look good. His bass lines on the Rio album are amazing but I think he truly came into his own on the Power Station album of 1985. (Boy does that make me feel old.)

(John's photo came from here.)


He may not be hot to some but the man makes me swoon with his poppin'. Mr. Geddy Lee of Rush.



Flea of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, who was actually a child prodigy - a jazz trained trumpeter who idolized Miles Davis. I love his funky slap bass.



And a chick with a bass?!? Now that's hot! Johnette Napolitano, formerly of Concrete Blonde. For more sexy chicks with basses, click here.



In high school, my art teacher used to play the music of Stanley Clarke, a wonderful jazz bass player. It was also soothing to listen to him during our attempts to be creative and artistic.

Bernard Edwards, who was also a huge inspiration to John Taylor. Now that man could play bass guitar!! Talk about being mesmerized. Think about it the next time you hear Good Times by Chic. The music world truly lost a legend when he passed.

I know many will mention Paul McCartney too. We simply cannot pass up this Beatles legend. Although for some reason, I always went for Lennon. Hmmm...

Are there any that I need to add to my list? Why do you suppose I go for the guys in the dark part of the stage with only 4 or 5 thick strings laid across a much longer neck instead of the ones in the spotlights making their 6 strings scream?

Monday, January 19, 2009

Let it be

I normally don't respond to comments within the comments but I had to with yesterday's post. I was amazed at the many varied reactions.

This proves the point, yet again, that perception is not shared. Every single one of you saw that post differently and reacted based on your own filters, environment and judgments of the past, present and future. We ALL do that. Me too! Yes, some of you came up with the same answer but the way you chose the answer was unique to each one of you.

Thank you to each and every one of you for your outstanding response. For caring about my feelings, for emphasizing my strengths, for listening and giving your honest opinion. I truly appreciate every one of you for what you shared with me yesterday.

It was Love Coach Rinatta's comments that led me to write this post. She said:

Yes, I would go out with him again, but from now on I would let him be the guy. If there's to be a kiss, let him initiate it. If there's to be hand holding, let him initiate it. If there's to be another date, let him ask. I would not fill in any uncomfortable silences and just let him be who he is and do what he will do.


I am used to being the driver in relationships. Its funny because I've noticed this trait in Soldier. My relationship with him was different from others because I let him be the guy. I knew he wanted to know what was going to happen, to control it, if you will, because it frightens him to not know.

I should remember that sometimes it takes recognizing it in someone else before we notice it in ourselves.

Coach Rinatta is right. I was trying to drive the date because the not knowing scares the crap out of me.

I am a forward girl because much of my life I felt as if I was the wallflower. It wasn't until I first stepped into a spotlight, when I first began singing, that people began to notice me. More people began to notice when I would flirt openly and smiled more. And even more people began to notice when I carried myself as a confident woman who was comfortable with her sexuality.

I am reminded so many times in my life to just LET IT BE. But I am, as most of us are, driven by my own fear. Fear wants to know what is going to happen. Fear believes in lack. Fear thinks that I need to do something in order to make someone like me.

Fear doesn't understand being.

Even with Soldier, many times I felt as if I could handle the ambiguity of our relationship. Then as the clock ticked down to R&R, I wanted to know what was going to happen. I wanted control of our future. I was terrified. I was fighting with my own ghosts. I couldn't just let our relationship be whatever showed up at my door. I had expectations and so did he. Of course, with expectation comes disappointment.

I have been beating myself up this past week because I realize that Soldier still means so very much to me. I've almost felt haunted. I've been frustrated with myself and crying myself to sleep again.

Why, oh why, can't I let him go?

And during this past week, I have received a few emails from him. I have felt his anger and rage at the world and his situation. I can tell that he feels caged and wants to be done with this deployment. I haven't responded to any of his emails because.... I simply do not know what to say.

I let him be.

Finally today I decided to send him a friendly email, just to say hello. Just as I was clicking 'send', my mouse hovering over the button, my phone rang. It was him.

He was silly and kind, warm, friendly and even a little self-deprecating! The call was so unexpected that I was nervously shaking the entire time. He spoke of seeing me when he returns. As friends, of course. I reminded him that it may take us a while to find a comfort level again. He agreed and asked if we could see each other without expectation. He said,

"That is what I enjoyed so much about dating you prior to this deployment. You never asked anything of me."

He's never said that to me before.

I often say that acceptance creates miracles. This phone call was not a miracle, really, but a gentle reminder for me to allow life to unfold before me.

I cannot control how I feel about Soldier. I have to love myself through this, whatever happens between the two of us. I have to allow myself to continue loving him, if that is the way my heart feels. I shouldn't fight it or be angry at myself for it.

What you resist, persists.

I cannot control how others are going to view me. I have to allow them to see me through whatever perception they have. I have to love them through it, even if that means not responding to their feelings of rage at circumstance or going out on second date and letting him be the guy. I have to allow them to be whomever they are.

In allowing, I need do nothing.

Even with this post, I know that many of you are going to view my continued relationship with Soldier based on your perception of what you've read here, what you've experienced in your own lives or things I have actually said to you. Feel free to say what you must. I will listen but please remember....

This is my journey, my quest. I'm pretty stubborn too!

I cannot control the future nor can I look back and regret or question the past. I don't know what is going to happen and I have to find a way to be OK with that. With anyone I encounter. I simply have to stay present in this moment, accept what is, and remember what the Beatles sang the year that I was born:

Let it be.

There is much freedom to be found in those three words.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Would you go out on a second date with this guy?


I had a 12-hour-first date with a man we'll call Trainer.


I met this man at the gym at least 4 times before meeting him once again at a Christmas party last year. Here's a description of our meeting from that Christmas party:

Within the first 20 minutes of being there, we had run into an acquaintance from the gym. I've met this guy many times and for some reason, he never remembers me. Suddenly, we're in conversation and my girlfriend starts to hint that I'm single and he's single... So I cut to the chase and asked him out. He said yes. Wow. Not bad for the first 1/2 hour.

After this meeting, I was distracted by yet another handsome man and never followed through on my planned date. Oops!

Fast forward a year and he finds me again on a social networking site. Apparently, he remembered me after all.

So we finally went out on that first date, an entire year later, to a casual restaurant for lunch.

The lunch went well. I'd forgotten how handsome he was. He's a personal trainer at the gym, in obviously great shape and is very passionate about the science of exercise. Our topics centered around nutrition, lifestyle and my plans for a triathlon in June. The conversation flowed easily.

We decided to head outside and walk around amongst the outdoor shops. It was a particularly breezy yet sunny day. My hair was flying recklessly in my face and he, joking around already, opened his overshirt to block the wind. I could have easily tied a string to him and flew him as a kite! The wind was relentless!!

I enjoy when I can find instant comfort with someone. Trainer and I were already picking on each other and nudging shoulders the way old friends do. I thought the date was going very well so when he suggested, as we walked past the theater, that we stop to see a movie, I was thrilled.

I noticed Trainer looking at me several times during the movie. He seemed to be smiling at my consistent giggles at the funny movie. He even leaned over to me and asked if I was enjoying myself. How could I not be?!

It was during the movie that I invited him to join myself, my family and a few friends for a birthday dinner at a restaurant nearby. He accepted the invitation.

After the movie we talked more about relationships and life. He had been married once before and seemed especially irritated with his history with women. He was curious about my relationship with the ex. I didn't realize this would be such a fascinating topic to potential suitors. He seemed even more perplexed than Soldier did. He finally admitted that relationships are difficult to explain to others, as they only make sense to the people involved. Yes, exactly.

I noticed a few times during our time together that he seemed especially shy, nervous or insecure around me. I am, as if you couldn't tell, a very forward girl. I am honest and upfront even upon initially meeting me. I can't really help it and though some friends have warned me otherwise, why should I try to be anything other than myself with someone? I would rather know that they can handle me than to pretend and reveal it later. We both even joked that he would definitely need to decide whether or not he could handle my forwardness, if we were to continue dating.

Dinner with my family and friends led to drinking. I'm not sure that Trainer could handle his martinis quite the way I could. My friends remarked that Trainer was definitely into me and departed quickly after dinner, assuming we'd be heading back to my place. The two of us opted instead to see another movie.

During the movie, Trainer was especially affectionate. I melted as he massaged my arms and hands. He was concerned about my comfort, as I get a little stiff sitting in those not-quite-comfortable movie seats. He rubbed my back. He'd made comments during dinner about kissing me and I was excited, looking forward to at least a nice kiss from this really sweet guy.

After the movie, we braved the chilly, windy night and made our way back to my car. I drove him to his own car and we talked casually, trying to get warm. Then he said, "Ok, see ya later."

What the ... ?! No hug or anything?!?

So, being the forward girl I am, I said, "I thought you were going to kiss me?"

He took my face roughly in his hands, kissed me hard. Not passionately, no. But like, well, my brother would kiss me.

Huh?

Perplexed, I said goodbye and drove away. I wasn't even out of the parking lot and he called me on my cell phone. I'm not sure why he called me, exactly. He made small talk with me on the phone as I drove home.

Except for a brief note on Facebook the next day, I didn't hear from him for over 2 weeks. Granted, it was the holidays and I was out of town. He did say he had been ill.

Then out of the blue, he left me a message last week and asked for a second date. When I called him back, the phone call was very awkward, much like the end of our date. He almost seemed like I was the one asking him out. There were lots of deafening silences and weird changes in the conversation. It was very frustrating trying to talk to him.

The girlfriend who introduced us last year at the Christmas party is now telling me that he might be a bit broken. Haven't I said I'm done with broken men?

So now I pose the question:

Based on this first date and our contact since then, would you go out on a second date with him?

Saturday, January 17, 2009

It was 20 years ago today...

20 years ago today, I traded this skyline:

(from here)

For this one:

(from here)

I was barely 19, a college drop-out pursuing a dream of becoming a singer. I was moving to the big city, away from home for the first time ever. My mother and I couldn't even make eye contact as I said goodbye and drove away down the street where I'd spent the past 16 years of my life. I was the first one to leave the nest. I stopped at the end of my street and cried. I was exhilarated. I was terrified. Then, I drove my 1974 Plymouth Duster the 3.5 hours to my cousin's apartment, listening to my homemade mix tapes along the way.

Dallas was only going to be a temporary stop along my musical path. I figured I'd stay here a few years, get in a band and eventually head to New York or L.A.

Within the first 5 days of living here, I had my first job and was working with the man I'd marry nearly 4 years later.

Heh. Best laid plans...

I did continue singing and working a day job until one day I realized I wanted a stable, secure life versus the competitive, exhausting life of a singer. It was actually during a rehearsal with my band that I was struck by the thought,

"I want to go back to college and study something computer-related."

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
-John Lennon

I didn't do anything special to celebrate today. It only occurred to me tonight that I should acknowledge it.

So... thank you Dallas for a good 20-year run. I'm not sure if I'll be here another 20 years but then again, what do I know?

The only thing you can plan for in life is to plan to be surprised.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Random thoughts for a Friday

The ex has brought something to my attention that I'd never considered before. When he has the girls and they have to go to the restroom, he can't go in after them. Its really too bad that more places don't have family restrooms.

If you were a woman and saw a dad come in a public restroom to find his daughters, would you be offended?

---

I had to go check out that website I've seen advertised on billboards all over town. You know the one with the famous faces and the words I Am Second? Maybe its a local thing? Anyway, its apparently a very well designed religious website (and marketing plan) where people tell their stories of hardship and how they found God.

I had to check out the story of local baseball hero Josh Hamilton because of two reasons:

1) I love baseball, especially the Texas Rangers.

2) Duh. He's hot.

3) Ok, I knew he'd had a difficult time in life and had fought back to be a baseball champion.

One of the things I found interesting about his story was that he turned to drugs, alcohol and tattoos to give him the same high he felt when playing baseball in front of a huge crowd of adoring fans.

It occurred to me: Could tattoos essentially be along the same lines as cutting?

You know, where people cut themselves for a pain/pleasure experience? Hmmm...

He's still hot though.

---

Since I was home again today with a sick child, I thought I'd move my hair appointment to today vs. tomorrow. I was in dire need of a hair cut. It was also good to get Rose out of the house.

I've gone to the same stylist since I was pregnant with Grace. She was having similar issues with her husband as I was during my pregnancy. She fought and fought and finally, about a year ago, decided to file for divorce.

I've seen her twice since then and both times she complained about how her ex was cheating, not working, stealing, lying, drinking and being an absent father to their teenage children. She was glad to be moving forward but still wrapped up in the drama of filing for divorce and dating.

Today, she told me that they are reconciling.

I asked if things were any better. She sighed and shook her head. When I asked about his drinking she said,

"Well, he's still an alcoholic. He said when I filed for divorce, he got drunk every day. Seven days a week. Now he only drinks about 3 or 4 days a week."

Seriously?

As I left, I began to ponder other friends in similar situations. Marriages that are already over. Spouses moved out. Issues not even in the beginning stages of getting resolved. Barely speaking to each other...but they're trying to reconcile.

Who am I to judge?

I am certainly not in her shoes but part of me wonders if the reconciling is for convenience or because she didn't want to be lonely anymore.

Suddenly I felt that divorce isn't such a cowardly way out, as some people say. It seems like it takes major courage to decide to be alone instead of staying in a loveless place. Without even trying to bring the love back. Resigned to it, I suppose.

Then there's that horrible feeling of loneliness when you're actually lying next to someone.

I only know my own personal story. I may not have someone to snuggle up to every night but I do feel loved and happy. I'm also very grateful that the ex is dealing with his struggles and I am dealing with my own. We're more respectful to each other as well because we're no longer blaming each other for our unhappiness.

Our divorce was worth it. And actually... so was our marriage.

---

Tonight on the drive home from picking up Grace, we heard "Shock the Monkey" by Peter Gabriel.

Grace was singing it after we got out of the car.

"Chocolate Monkey. CHOCOLATE MONKEY. Chocolate Monkey. CHOCOLATE MONKEY."

Peter Gabriel would be shocked!

Heh.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

That restless feeling again

I'm SO glad both kids are asleep. I had both girls home with me today because Rose was sick and Grace wanted to stay home too. I was a big softie and let her. Ugh. What a day. Rose has this habit of screaming and wailing when she's sick. I can't stand it. I run out of patience with that REALLY quickly.

I am finally in a quiet house. For now.

I can so totally tell when I haven't had much time alone lately. I start to feel overwhelmed easily and grouchy. I begin to withdraw from or get irritated with people. I'm usually doing what I can to "be there" for everyone and then I just get sapped! I have to have a few days to myself to refuel. And that won't be happening again for another week and a half.

*sigh*

I feel restless right now. I'm definitely in one of those "do I meditate or masturbate?" moods. Maybe I'll copy a bit of erotica that I sent to Soldier a while back... to save me a bit of typing tonight. I loved reliving our moments and capturing them in written form.

**enter dream sequence**


Its a lazy Sunday morning and we have the house to ourselves. The sun is shining through the blinds of my window and I see your sleepy face next to me on a pillow. We kiss and you pull me closer to you. Your body feels nice and warm. I fit perfectly in your arms. I can feel your morning stiffness on my leg and I shift to move you between my thighs. I'm already moist and I'm enjoying the way you're rubbing me in just the right place.

My hands are caressing your back and moving up your spine to your neck. You're squeezing my breasts and pinching my nipples softly. Your kisses get more passionate and deep. Your hands slide down my back and you pull me, roughly, closer into your hips. My breasts are pressing against you. I arch my back and your kisses are on my neck, your warm breath on my chest. Your fingers explore me, outside and inside, and you're taking my breath away. I reach down and begin stroking you. You're moaning and I feel the vibration of your voice on my skin.

I lean up and push you onto your back. I straddle you, my thighs around your waist. I'm kissing your face, slowly, teasing you, licking your skin, exploring your forehead, your eyes, your cheeks, your ears, pausing to kiss your mouth again. I can feel you, growing harder and closer to your destination, and I twirl my hips to tease you more. I move slowly down your abdomen and kiss your neck, rubbing my hair along your chest. I'm kissing you, teasing your nipples with my tongue and I'm dripping wet on you.

I pause for a moment, my thighs around your hips and you're in the right spot. I begin sliding up and down, so close to orgasm as I'm driving the pressure in the most sensitive places. I delay my gratification and continue my exploration, moving down between your legs. I squeeze my breasts around your shaft and your hips begin to rock harder. You're squeezing me tighter and I'm licking you now. I'm getting more turned on knowing that this feels good to you. My tongue moves up one side and down the other. I take your entirety into my mouth. Your hands move to my head and your words tell me how good it feels. I stop and our eyes meet. You're looking at me hungrily and waiting for my next move. My hands move over you, pulsing every inch. I'm rubbing you harder and tighter and I take you into my mouth again. Your hips push faster and I'm nearly gagging but I love the taste of you.

You reach down, lift my face and pull my mouth to yours, kissing me harder. I rise above you and allow you to enter me. Finally. Oh God... it feels so good to have you inside of me. The initial penetration is always my favorite part, leaving me panting. My hips are grinding into you. I can't get you inside of me enough. I'm pushing down harder and your hips are moving faster. Yes now I can feel you deeper. Your hands are in my hair. I sit back on you, feeling you even deeper, riding you even faster. You feel so good. Please. Harder and deeper. I want all of you.

Your rhythm doesn't stop as you pull my face closer to yours. You want eye contact. You want to be and see deep inside of me. I can see your eyebrows purse slightly, as if you're as emotionally wrapped up in this as I am. I see your teeth clinch and you kiss me hard. Both of your hands are in my hair, holding tightly as your hips guide me up and down. I am not even on the bed anymore. There is nothing beneath me but you.

You lift me and lie me down on my stomach in the bed. You move my hair and kiss the back of my neck. I feel your breath along my back as your tongue bathes me. The further south you go, the more your kisses turn to bites. My hips are swirling in anticipation of what is going to happen next. My breath is getting heavier. I love the feel of your fingers along my spine and your rough kisses along the curve where my spine meets my ass. I feel your fingers deep inside as you bury your face in me. My body shudders. Your tongue is such a turn on. From your words to your actions, I do so love your tongue. I'm already wet and yet I fill with even more moisture. I push myself further into you. I want to feel more of you.

I'm moaning now. My hands reach down and I explore my own favorite pleasure points. I want you inside of me and I tell you so. You position yourself and gently convince me to take you into the depths of my round flesh. I feel just enough that we stop. Breathe. Relax. I still want more. We move into each other, you pushing further and me not only allowing but pulling you in. Perfection. I push into you and you feel so good. I'm rubbing myself faster and forcing you deeper. You begin moving faster and harder and I'm vibrating. I can feels waves of orgasm coming over me and you're feeling and riding the waves along with me. I'm melting. You lean forward and you're trying to kiss me. I feel your arms around my shoulders and my neck as you pull to embrace me. I'm loving this. This is primal. This is what I have been waiting for.

I want you to release yourself inside me. And you do.

I feel you fall, spent, over my body and we lie there. You're heavy on top of me but its been so long since you were there that I enjoy the feeling. I love your body on mine. I love the feel of you inside of me. I am smiling now.

**exit dream sequence**

Hmmmm....

Yeah, ok. I think I'll go meditate now.

Om. Shanti.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The children of single parents

Ha ha ha ha!!! The kids and I are snuggled in the bed watching American Idol. This is the only reality show, and nearly the only television, that we watch. Its so much fun to watch in this stage when its SO bad.

Entertainment... sometimes like watching a train wreck too!

---

Rose is not feeling well. She's been feeling stuffy headed for almost a week now. On Friday of last week, she woke up with a sore throat and begged to stay home from school. I thought she may have been running a fever so I called into her school to inform them of her first sick day.

Ten minutes later, she was playing with Grace and jumping on the trampoline.

I was ticked but I'd already called in for her. Turns out she wasn't running fever after all. Thankfully, I could still drop her off at Grace's preschool so I could go to work. I also warned her about crying wolf.

So this morning, when she woke up crying about how bad she felt, I sympathized but I sent her to school anyway.

(She's not contagious but I get the feeling I'll be working from home tomorrow. My job is a blessing.)

---

Can you imagine three girls trying to get ready in the morning?

It's a rare morning that we get out the door without someone breaking down or losing it about something! The funny thing is, we each seem to take turns being the calm one, the one who holds it all together while the other two melt down.

Yes, even I've been known to melt down too.

Grace has this thing with shoes. She hates wearing socks. She doesn't like the "dots" (her term for the ends of the toe seams on her socks) and freaks out every time she has to put them on.

Rose is usually on top of things but there is the occasional morning, like today, that she just can't deal. I was dreading it when Grace woke up. I knew they'd be losing it and I couldn't handle it today.

But my sweet 4 year old, my baby girl, held it together while I tried to get us out the door.

"Mommy, I've brushed my teeth and hair. I grabbed a muffin and I'll just eat it at school."

Aw.

---

Tonight, Grace has continued to be my "big girl". She likes being 4.

"Mommy, we have to take care of Rose. She doesn't feel good. Can I put a warm washrag on her face to make her head stop hurting?"

"Can I help you with the laundry?"

"I've got it Mommy! I will help you carry everything in the house."

I love how my little ones step up to help me. I assume most single parents experience this. I think our kids have to mature a little faster than those in a two parent home.

I think we, as single parents, possibly expose our children to more at an earlier age as well. The Exception had a post up about some of the possibly adult themed musicals her daughter has seen already, at the age of 9. My kids' favorite movie at the moment is Grease. I watched it at their age and I never caught on to the sexual references.

I too am quite positive that the leadership qualities of both of my children have probably been acquired due to the responsibilities I've already given them. I'm raising them to be independent children because I have to. I also emphasize life lessons like the fact that sometimes, things don't always go the way we'd like them to. I've even introduced a little psychology with them - explaining that when another child is acting mean towards them, it is probably due to a sadness that they are trying to hide. It helps the both of them to have compassion for those that seemingly attempt to hurt them.

Perhaps we expose our children to other types of situations due to the differences in ours vs. a two parent home. Either way, I think our children are accepting the challenge and becoming well rounded individuals (like, um, the next president?).

---

Its getting late and Rose is crying in her bed. I may be in for a long night with fever and tears. I'll try not to beat myself up too much for her lesson today.

It's tough sometimes to be the heavy but I'm also the big softie who will stroke her face, wipe her tears and remind her that everything is going to be ok.

Bless their hearts, they do the same for me sometimes too.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Feast or famine

After being out with the single moms Saturday evening, I was feeling very lonely by the end of the night.

It was the pastor's fault.

There were nine of us. 9 single women at a bar watching a band and one man was hanging around us. He was a cute man... so each of us began talking to him. We soon found out that he is a new pastor at a local church and he's married with 4 kids. His wife and kids hadn't yet moved to the area so he was enjoying all the female company.

Somehow, during the night, and after I'd had a few drinks, he began asking about men in my life. Of course the subject matter led to a discussion about Soldier. I was trying to avoid the conversation but he insisted on hearing all about it.

I loathe talking about it. Especially after alcohol has taken over any positive ions in my brain.

Then the pastor looked into my eyes and said,

"You do know that there is a man out there who will love you and treat you the way you're meant to be treated."

Yeah. I know.

The "knowing that" didn't help matters though and on my drive home I was in tears and feeling very sorry for myself.

------------

I've noticed during the past few years or so, that my loneliness waxes and wanes much like the phases of the moon. I wonder sometimes if it has something to do with the moon cycles. Or my cycle perhaps?

------------

Because the next evening, I had every intention of getting in a good bike workout on my trainer. Instead, I received an unexpected but very pleasant phone call with a man I've been communicating with via email. We'd connected over the online dating site I'm on. He's very sweet, honest, open and completely intrigued with my spirituality. We had a great conversation that ended with him saying,

"T, I really enjoy talking to you. I can't wait to meet you now!"

---

After talking with the online guy, I decided to check email. Soldier was being a naughty boy. In the past, when he'd emailed that late at night, it meant that he was waiting my response. We'd end up emailing 20 messages back and forth, much like a chat, both of us horny and looking forward to the others' sexy talk.

This time, I logged off the computer and went to bed.

---

Tonight on the drive to my A Course in Miracles study group (led by my friend D), I was again very honored and surprised to hear from my sweet Rachel.

Oh Rachel... hearing your voice brings a smile to my lips and butterflies to my stomach.

I'm dying to get you here. I do want so badly to spend more time with you. You are, quite simply, an incredible addition to my life. Thank you for stealing away a few moments to bless me with your attention.

---

While I was in my study group tonight, my phone interrupted with another call... this time from the 12 hour lunch date guy!

Our last date ended so awkwardly that I didn't expect to hear from him again. I still think we don't have much of a future other than friends but it was nice to hear from him.

He wants to take me to dinner this weekend. Huh? Who knew?

---

As I was saying goodbye to my babysitter tonight, my phone rang again. This time it was a number I did not recognize so I didn't answer it.

After she left I listened to the message. It was another guy from online that I haven't talked to yet. We've been emailing but...

I'll have to call him back tomorrow.

---

So, now its getting really late and I should be getting ready for bed but I decide to check email one more time. This time I see a message from TNT.

Aw! I haven't talked to him in so long between the holidays, his travel with work, our custody weekends being off and other busyness. He misses me.

I called him and we talked for an hour. He's such a great guy.

------------

It seems like feast or famine sometimes but is my "seeming" real?

Is all of this love there, even when the phone is silent, my inbox is dead and it seems like I'm the only person on the planet?


Maybe sometimes, I simply choose not to notice that love that is all around me, all the time.

Or maybe sometimes, it can be found in the silence that I'm not fully appreciating.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Does it matter who has it worse? Really?

Last night I went out for my first outing with my single parents meetup group. There were 7 of us single moms all sharing our stories.

One was fresh out of a quick divorce with a 17 month old son.

One was 2 years past her divorce. A divorce that took 3 years to complete!

Others had similar stories... ex-husbands who didn't work, ex-husbands who were uninvolved... The word "loser" was thrown around quite a bit.

I found myself sinking lower into my chair when it was time for me to speak up.

I am very fortunate. My ex is wonderful, supportive, loving, helpful, responsible. As I told them my story, they all looked at me and said,

"Ok, can we hate you now?"

*sigh*

This morning, I read a blog post at Irascible Crayons about a discussion in the comments at Ms. Single Mama. Apparently a few commenters are saying that women who receive child support and are able to have every other weekend free are not true single parents.

As I read the comments and the blog post, I was reminded of how the ex and I picked on each other while we were married. When either of us was sick or tired, one of us would always emphasize how we were more sick or more tired than the other one. It was quite humorous. I would frequently notice it and say,

"Why does it have to be a competition of who has it worse?"


I have always assumed the definition of "single parent" was one who was a parent and also single. I've even written a post about how the term seems like such an oxymoron, but alas it is how we define ourselves.

I know mothers who haven't seen their child's father since they were pregnant.

I know mothers who haven't seen their child's father since the baby was very small.

I know mothers who chose to be single parents, with no man involved at all.

I know divorced parents who hate each other.

I know divorced parents who do what they can to work together, despite their mutual dislike of each other.

I know divorced parents who respect each other and work to share custody of their children.

I know divorced parents who have sole custody and struggle to make ends meet.

I know married parents who feel like single parents because their spouses are deployed (thanks for the reminder Niki!), physically or emotionally unavailable.

I have a great ex-husband who is actually becoming a better father with every passing year. We'd be happy to share weeks with our children but he travels every week with work. Ironically, he'd probably spend the same amount of time with the girls if we did stay married. The fortunate thing, however, is that the time he does spend with them is one-on-one focused time without me in the middle. He's had to step up. And he most certainly has. He is by no means perfect but I know that I don't have it so bad.


The one thing all of us have in common is that we are parents. We have to give so much to our children. Whether that's 1/2 weeks and every other weekend off, or every day save 4 weekend days a month, or every single waking moment, we are still parents.

But we are also single or in some ways, on our own. We all still struggle with the loneliness and overwhelming feeling of loss. We all still want someone to listen to us and understand. We all still miss intimacy and sex. We all still long for that loving acceptance that a true partner can bring to our lives.

We are all the same, despite some order of difficulty in our lives or our parenting.

We are all doing our best with whatever situation we find ourselves in. And we all still long for love.


Thursday, January 8, 2009

A reader asks...

A reader who wishes to remain anonymous emailed me after yesterday's post. I am happy that my openness invites questions like this one. I thought some of you might have some advice other than what I offer her.

Her question:
"Do you think someone can condition themselves to only have an "O" (orgasm) when they are masturbating? The reason I ask this is because I have pleasured myself for a long time before I ever started having sex. I have been married for 8 years and I do not think I have ever had an O when my husband and I have had sex.

I love my husband and we are starting to experiment a little. My body will only allow me to do so much being that I am overweight. I am hoping to get this extra weight off and hoping that will help me to become a better sexual partner with my husband."


I think that her goal should be to find the same comfort with her husband as she has alone.


Many of us are ashamed of our sexuality or our bodies and therefore cannot relax enough to orgasm with someone else. All of us have some sort of sexual hangup. My previous blog post was a prime example.

She mentioned wanting to lose weight and that’s a good overall plan. But I think she can still be a good sex partner with her husband now.

I think she could get into an exercise routine that helps her to feel sexy, feminine and beautiful. Belly dancing or salsa are both good for bringing out our fun, feminine side. Or anything that just feels good to her body.

I also recommended the book Nina Hartley's Guide to Total Sex. (Nina is the best!)

I think most importantly, we should all remember this:

No matter what we look like or what shape we’re in, when we are lost in pleasure, we glow in beauty and sexiness!

Don't you agree?


What do you think? Have you experienced this with your partner? Do you think masturbation desensitizes us from enjoying our partners?

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

"Click"= Risk-worthy?

Depot Dad recently wrote a post on risk where he asked:

"What are you willing to risk for love?"

Dad's House
continued the theme with his own post about vulnerability as dating single parents. Dad's House proposed that it is difficult to be vulnerable because as single parents, our children come first. He also said:

"Since I’m caring for my kids and running a household solo (the half-time they are with me), I can’t afford to be weak. I’m not going to give equal status around my house, and with my kids, to a girlfriend who may not be around next week."


Agreed.


However, I would be the first one to tell you that I would risk vulnerability for love. That it is worth it, even if my children have to witness the aftermath of heartbreak. I figure, if they see me feel real deep feelings and then get back up, smile and try again, wouldn't they be willing to risk it too? Because maybe they would have the faith that everything would be ok after all?

I also know that the risk wouldn't be worth it unless there was a "click".

Is is just me? Or does everyone look for a click? And then post-click, I am so blinded that I don't even notice anyone else.

Then there's the ironic part of this whole "click" nonsense. The last man I clicked with was Soldier. But even with Soldier....it didn't happen.

"It" being an orgasm.

Next month will be 2 years since I've experienced an actual over-the-top orgasm with a man.

I told myself that maybe he wasn't sensual enough. Maybe he was only capable of giving me tiny earthquakes.

Part of me wonders if I haven't been truly vulnerable. Maybe I did hold back instead of giving myself wholly to him? Maybe a part of me did know that it wasn't going to last? Maybe I simply haven't been with enough men in the past year?!

Then there's the part about... well... the last amazing orgasms I have experienced (with someone other than myself) were with women. (And even that was over 6 months ago.)

*sigh*

What the hell does that mean?

Or does it mean anything at all?

Its been over a month since I've been with a man and even then, I was in "teacher mode" and didn't allow myself to climax. God knows I tried but... just... couldn't.

Maybe with women I feel more comfortable being vulnerable because there is no penetration (well, not with an actual *ahem* organ). Every time Soldier was inside me, I would cry. It felt wonderful but I couldn't let go. I don't cry when I'm with women.

Maybe with women I feel that I am in control of the situation. With the women I've been with, I was a "teacher" but could still have very powerful, climbing the walls, shuddering orgasms. But as a "teacher" with a man, I am in control too. The intimacy with a male student was good but I still wore a mask and unfortunately, couldn't get over the top.

Perhaps I haven't been risking vulnerability after all? Or perhaps I simply haven't found the right lover?

Then there's the whole manner of safe sex.

I'm used to being married. Or with someone who just came out of a monogamous relationship. Or with someone who was already safely tested for disease.

I have only had one man wear a condom with me and that was my husband. And that was only one time.

I loathe sex with a condom but talk about RISK!!!

I haven't been with that many people. I am still new to this. Yes, I am a sexual person but I'm still trying to figure out the whole sex-as-a-single-woman thing. I've always preferred quality, experimental, long lasting sexual relationships to sex with a large quantity of people.

So now I wonder:

Am I really risking for love? Should I listen to the "click"? Will I ever truly give myself again?

*sigh*

Is there anywhere in particular I can check this baggage?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Calling for Love

I was going through my drafts tonight... many drafts that I didn't publish for some reason or another.... and I found this one. I wrote it from a very frightened place. I was dreading the R&R weekend with Soldier. So scared that he might come back and things simply wouldn't work out. Premonition perhaps?

I thought I'd post it now since I am feeling a bit lost again. Sometimes when I don't know which way to go, fear takes over. My friend D always sees me right through the fear. He recently began his own blog and I am thrilled that he is sharing his insights with more than just me.


---

September 4, 2008

With the reliving of my story with my soldier and worries about our future, I was finding myself in a lonely, melancholy place.

Of course.

I knew that.

Focusing on the past or worrying about the future (instead of living in the present moment) usually does that to me.

I can usually see it so clearly when someone else is doing it. I can usually see the doorway out of the melancholy and help to guide them there. I tell them to accept where they are now, for only their non-judgment of themselves will allow the dark cloud to pass. I can usually tell them that they are only calling for love, as we all do, and it seems frightening because we believe that there isn't enough love to go around. This moment will pass and the days will look brighter. I have said this to friends countless times.

But when its me that's lost in that melancholy place, I wallow. I can't get out. It feels like I am chained to a cold, stone wall and there's such a fog around me that I don't even see the door to escape. I know its there but emotionally I can't wrap my head around it. Something inside of me keeps screaming,

"Its not there! You're trapped! You'll be stuck here forever!"

I get angry at myself because surely I've been here before. I know for fact that the chains are made of my own fear and if I just let go of that fear, the chains will vaporize.

The chains are only as strong as I let them be.

The fog is all the noise in my head.

If I just breathe... take a moment to watch the thoughts float by, the fog will dissipate. I know all of this and yet, I can't escape.

I know there are people out there, outside of these walls. I'm pleading,

"Please see me! Acknowledge me! Validate me! Love me!"

The voice in my head is stern,

"You know better than that! You can't depend on someone else to love you. Don't you love yourself? They most certainly aren't going to love you if you don't love yourself."

"Yes... but I'm weak. I'm struggling. I'm tired. Can't someone else do this for me?"


A voice comes through the fog - the familiar sound of my friend, D. D is also a teacher of A Course in Miracles and a long time friend. He, somehow, can always see me so clearly. He doesn't see the chains or the stone wall. He knows that I think I'm struggling, exhausting myself. He sees me as beautiful, loved and lovely. He smiles and says to me,

"Whoa there Missy! You're just calling for some love, aren't ya? Big deal. We all do it, T. All of the time. So?

Emotions are simply expressions of thoughts. Are you maybe trying too hard today? Remember that applying what you are learning really means giving up trying to apply it. You don't need to do anything. Just stop. Right here. Right now. On this breath, give up your need to apply anything, understand anything, obsess about anything. There is nothing real keeping you from it.

You are the peace that you are seeking.

You don't have to find it, look for it or snap into it. Just stop getting in its way."

And as the echoes of his voice ring in my lonely, melancholy place, I begin to feel the chains loosen around my wrists and ankles. I can hear my own voice say,

"Yes, T. Its ok that you want to feel validated and loved. Don't judge yourself for it and think that you're supposed to somehow know better. Relax. Be here now."


My breathing becomes more steady. The fog lifts. Suddenly I don't see a door; instead I realize that I was never in a room at all. I see blue skies and glorious gardens all around me. I feel the boundless love that surrounds me. The voice in my head becomes softer now. Loving. Accepting. And its then that a smile spreads across my face.

I am healed in this moment. Those that I encounter will heal with me. We are each others' teachers and together, we are Love.

...