Saturday, February 28, 2009

Saturday evening... and a bit of rum

Its early Saturday evening. The girls are in the other room watching a movie we rented last night. I'm in the kitchen making turkey tacos.

As a late afternoon snack, I made Ghirardelli hot chocolate for the kids and me. They drank theirs with tiny marshmallows and I drank mine with a shot of dark rum.

Its been a while since I've had a good stiff one.

Any kind of stiff one!

So, with a fresh buzz going and taco shells in the oven, I thought I'd blog about the latest with Soldier.

He's been really consistent at staying in touch with me.

Currently, he is on the other side of the country visiting with family and following his Alma Mater college basketball team during March Madness.

I'm wondering if I'm going through my own March Madness... and its just the end of February.

We have plans to go to dinner when he returns to Texas. I can barely believe that when I see him again, it will have been 5 months since I last saw him.

5 months of me doing my damnedest to move forward and get on with dating other people.

Yet when I hear his voice, those 5 months are nothing but a blur of futility.

He emailed me earlier last week to give me a heads up of what the last few games are looking like and when he estimates he will be back in town. I never replied. I know he's not checking email all the time.

Yesterday, I left my cell phone in my office as I talked to several of my co-workers before heading home. When I gathered my things to leave, I saw that he'd called and left a voice mail.

His voice....

I teared up when I heard his voice. I haven't spoken to him via phone since he's been with his family. Hearing his voice yesterday... he's starting to sound like his old self again.

Kind.

Considerate.

Open.

I'm doing my best to keep my wits about me. I'm trying my hardest not to project any sort of imagined fantasy of what it will be like when we see each other again.

But when he says things like "I hope to see you soon" and "I'm looking forward to seeing you again..."

Oh how my heart leaps with joy!

I'm trying.... really trying not to get too excited.


Ok, back to reality. Dinner time!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Dating woes, plans and being adored


My feelings over the past week or so have swayed from peaceful to hopeful to downhearted and desolate to hopeful and accepting again.


But I'm also doing my best to accept myself however I'm feeling. I'm starting to notice the impermanence of these feelings so I'm not clinging too tightly to any of them.

Besides, I suppose this is normal since I still don't know what the hell is going on in my love life.
---

I have gone out with a few guys that I met online.

One was completely enthralled with my spirituality. We talked on the phone and in person... only about spirituality.

He never asked a single question about anything but my spirituality.

Then he sent me an enthusiastic email the next day saying I was so "enlightened" and that we should go out again!!!

Since then I've received one text... on Valentine's day... wishing me a Happy Valentine's Day.

--

I went out with another guy but there were no sparks.

I was nearly bored during our lunch date until he began asking about the TV shows my daughters watched with me.

Him: My son just really enjoys the old TV show, Leave it to Beaver.

T: Yeah? That's a good wholesome family show.

Him: Oh yes it is! I record it and when I have my son, we watch a few episodes together before bed. *sigh* Yep, he just LOVES the Beaver!!



I... couldn't.... resist...



Wait for it....





T: *smiles* Yeah, most boys do love the beaver.

It actually took him a few seconds before he realized what I'd said. Forget it, from then on the conversation was nothing but sex. He wanted to know everything I'd ever done sexually.

(Heh. I said "but sex".)

And yes, maybe I was acting out. (who me?) I was bored.

He texted me last week (two weeks after our lunch date) asking me to a movie over the weekend.

WTF?! What happened to picking up the phone?

I ignored his text until mid-day Saturday and then I texted that I already had plans.

--

I have a few more prospects lining up online. We'll see.

I also have a blind date planned with a friend of one of my fellow A Course in Miracles students. We're double dating so there won't be too much pressure. She's convinced that I will love him. I'm looking forward to that.

It would just be nice to have someone be interested in all facets of me, not just one side. I am so much more than spiritual or sexual.

---

I spent time last weekend with a wonderful old friend. And I had a really sweet conversation last week with Pickle Boy.

After talking with those two men, the realization occurred to me....

I know exactly how I choose to be treated by my next special someone.

I choose to be adored.

It may sound like a lot to ask for but seriously... most of the people in my life adore me. Even my ex-husband treats me with love, compassion and adoration.

Why shouldn't I receive the same treatment from my next companion?!

Over the weekend, my friend sat with me, listened to me, gave me his complete attention, held me, stared into my eyes and said to me, "You know that I love you and would do anything in the world for you, right?"

On the phone with PB last week, I was confiding about my dating woes. My sweet Pickle said to me, "T, you are an amazing woman and I can't imagine you would have any trouble at all in finding someone that sees just how amazing you are. I love talking to you. It's so refreshing! You are awesome."

I am already blessed with much love and adoration from friends and family in my life.

I choose the same adoration from a kind, gentle, open-hearted special someone.

That's not too much to ask, is it?

Because that is exactly what I would offer as well.

We only get what we give away...

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Oprah's giving props; Motherhood is funny on ABC

On Thursday's show, Oprah is finally focusing on America's soldiers and the families who love them.

I'd like to think it had
something to do with me.

My friend and high school classmate Joe, whom Soldier and I were scheduled to visit in Chicago this summer, is married to one of Oprah's executive producers.

I mentioned to Joe, several months ago, that he should ask his wife to ask Oprah to show some love to the military families that support so many deployed soldiers. I told him about how I'd connected with so many mil-spouses and girlfriends through my blog. Joe, of course, was also in contact with Soldier during his deployment and had to listen to my babbling about it as well.

He thought it was a great idea and said he'd pass it on.

Watch a preview of Thursday's show here.

One part of the preview stood out to me. When one woman says, "You become... somebody else when you're there..."

My heart melted. I know that all too well...

Joe has yet to confirm whether my message was delivered to Oprah but nonetheless, you can bet I'll be watching this show!

**Update: Oprah is also looking to honor soldiers. If you want your soldier to be honored on Oprah, click here for more details.***

---

In April of last year, I mentioned an internet sitcom that I was enjoying called "In the Motherhood". I recently saw that ABC has turned it into a sitcom for TV!

The new show debuts on ABC on March 26.

What I enjoyed about the internet show, and I'm happy to see they're continuing this, is that YOU can submit YOUR stories to be part of the show's storylines.

Because truth is always stranger than fiction anyway, right?

So, go check out the ABC website (and no, they're not paying me. I just love the concept.) and submit your funny motherhood stories.

Or not. Just leave 'em here in a comment.

We can all use a good giggle now and then, right?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Gluteus Maximus: Its a beautiful thing

With today being Mardi Gras (and you can't take da Louisiana outta da girl), I dedicate this post to all those that showed some skin. Hope the doubloons were worth it!



I watched as my girlfriend stood in front of the mirror and frowned at her back side. She sighed and then noticed me looking at her.

Embarrassed, she admitted, "My butt is just so... huge."

"Girl!" I said in admiration, "Don't you know that ass is in?"

I used to do the same thing. I'd see myself in the mirror during the warrior yoga poses and wish that I had a smaller rear.

Why are we so hard on ourselves?!?

It wasn't until I dated an "ass man" that I truly began to appreciate my own back side.... and quite frankly, the rest of my body as well.

---




Since I was about 15 years old, I have been attracting "boob men". I always assumed this was my best asset and therefore wore\still wear my fair share of low cut tops or turtlenecks. I think most of us, as women, have a part of our body that seems to be the one part that gets the most attention.

Still, I remember that first night with my ass man. He was sitting on the edge of the bed and I was standing in front of him. We had already been kissing on my couch for well over an hour and decided to move things up to the next level. My experience, at this point in the make out session, was that my top would come off, then the bra and hands would be lifting my nipples to waiting lips.

This time it was different.

He slid his hands down my backside and cupped my cheeks, fingers gripping tightly. Through gritted teeth, he panted in my ear, "I've been waiting all night to get my hands on this ass!"

What?! Really?

Over time, he helped me to build an appreciation for the derriere - mine and others. I've now noticed that one of my favorite parts of a woman is her rear. And forget it, if she has a small waist that curves down sensually into wide hips and a full plump ass, I am completely taken.

Don't feel left out, men.

A man with a butt that sits up just mmmm...like on a pedestal.... you know who you are. You runners or cyclists out there or those of you with a naturally good ass. Yeah, you do it for me too.




---




I had to share this poem, written by one of my favorite sexy girl bloggers, Vix at The Over-Educated Nympho.

I loved this poem because Vix points out that this girl with the nice ass may not have a clue that she looks as good as she does (see how we have no idea what is attractive to others?).

A Poem of Appreciation, Dedicated To That Fine Ass

Tonight (so chilly!) I bundled up and went to the store
In desperate need of dog food and more
With a grocery cart full of microwave meals
I ran into a girl and nearly squealed
My feet stopped mid-flight
Everything about her was totally right
GodDAMN that girl has a nice ass
I thought to myself while I passed
So round, so full, so BIG
It put mine to shame, really it did

I stared and I stared, and I stared some more
Ba boom ba boom ba boom it shook down to the floor
A big booty like that can rock yoga pants
Besides that it put me in a trance
So plump, so pert, so perfectly proud
I couldn’t help but feel Wow‘ed
This is no size 2 chica, no skin and bones
Call her the Big Booty Badass and give her a throne
Her hair was dirty blonde (not my type)
But with an ass like that does it matter what she looks like?
I turned to glimpse at my fair-haired lass
Yowza, she’s got more than a fine ass!

No make-up, a plain and lovely face
With a nice meaty body, sexy with grace
Her clothes were comfortable, made for not trying
In her cart was Whoppers candy (I swear I’m not lying!)
How delightful to see a curvy chick who rocks her big booty
As a normal sized girl–don’t see those on TV–it’s her duty
Does she know how good she looks? Has she a clue?
I suspect not, yet she could write a How-To
As I left I vowed to write a poem full of sass
Dedicated to that fine rockin’ ass.

---




So girls, if there's a part of your body that you think is too big or too whatever, don't fret. I guarantee there's someone out there who appreciates it. (I had to keep up the rhyme.)


Be PROUD of your body. Work it girl!

And when you work it, they can't help but take notice! Ba boom!

Ass men!! Speak up! The floor is yours!


Photos of gorgeous nudes came from here.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Sometimes we just need to vent

I've mentioned before that I work with all men. Recently we've hired two other females to balance out the testosterone/estrogen ratio around here. It is nice to bond with the girls.

One of the things I've been privy too, as one of the guys, is how the wives call up to the office to vent to their husbands.

I've been there. I remember doing that with my ex. I can still remember his irritated tone when I called him (he was out of town, as usual) to let him know that the baby needed me but both myself and Rose were vomiting relentlessly.

He didn't like feeling helpless so he would get angry with me.

The thing is, as a wife, we (speaking for myself, of course) are so used to making joint decisions around the house that sometimes we feel that we need some reinforcement.

And sometimes... we just need to vent.

After all, when he came home from a difficult day, he would wind down by filling me in on all the B.S. that he had to put up with that day. I listened, as a good wife should. I didn't feel helpless. I understood that he was letting off steam.

I guess it goes back to the Mars/Venus thing. Men feel that they should do two things:

1. Identify problem
2. Solve problem

But as women, sometimes we don't want the problem solved. We just want some validation, a listening ear, maybe even some sympathy and understanding.

It is interesting, being on this side of the phone call, and seeing how the wives are calling right when we're in the middle of a meeting or conference. I see the irritation on the husband's faces, the rolling of the eyes, the "honey, can I call you back later?" response.

I know how he feels.

And I know how she feels too.

Still it is interesting to see a different perspective on things.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

"Back in the day" isn't so far away...

Like, um, TOTALLY!

I went out with some girlfriends this past weekend to see an 80's music cover band. We had an ABSOLUTE blast!

I had to dress the part, as I've been known to do, so I went on a mad search to find my 80's Duran Duran Rio shirt. (And yes, I crimped my hair too!)

As I dug through the as-yet-to-be-unpacked boxes in the garage, I hit the motherlode!

Letters and journals from my senior year of high school and the year following.

Oh they took me back!!!

Many of my friends left for the National Guard's basic training right after graduation or went off to college. I had so many wonderful letters from the sweet guy friends in my life - many of whom are still in my life today!

As I read through them, I wondered if I knew how blessed I was to have so much love in my life.

The most interesting find was the note that Soldier wrote in my journal, right before we graduated high school. He was chiding me that I'd had a boyfriend (who was actually my friend J) and wouldn't date him when he initially asked me out. The most prophetic part of his note said:

"Someday, you'll grow out of those guys and you'll say, 'Gee, (Soldier) was right.'"

I had to giggle at that. That's just too weird....

---

In the past week or so, I have realized that I like myself better when I'm in a relationship.

In comparing myself as a single person and a person who was married or in a relationship, I can see vast differences.

I feel happier in life when I'm loyal and devoted to one person. I feel more stable, emotionally and mentally, when I'm in a solid, loving relationship. I enjoy exploring the depths of love and sex with someone in a monogamous relationship rather than sharing it with lots of different people.

Recalling my high school days confirmed that realization for me.

I was never really in a relationship in high school. I didn't have boyfriends.

OK, J was my friend and a mad crush but we weren't exactly "in a relationship".

I had 5 guys who were my best friends. I was infatuated with many boys who didn't know I existed. I was an emotional roller coaster and always wishing I could have a boyfriend... and it seemed like everyone else did.

I'm feeling much that same way now.

I feel that same roller coaster of emotions. I feel that same sense of "why can't I have a boyfriend?" (which sounds pathetic at age 39)

But looking over those letters from high school made me realize that I still have lots of love like that in my life.


I am at least more aware of it now than I was then. Aren't I?

I've mentioned this theory about myself to many people I know. Everyone seems to be in agreement that most of us feel more stable emotionally and mentally when we're in a solid, loving relationship.

Perhaps many of us are all a little bit co-dependent and need each other after all.


And you know what? Instead of thinking that being this way is a very bad thing that must change, I am working on accepting this about myself.

So what if I feel like I'm a better person when I have a loving companion in my life?!

Or as my gal friend Gem tells me, "T, you just love LOVE!"

That is who I am.

Its only taken me 20 odd years to realize this about myself. I'm not going to let it be a limitation but a simple observation.

Awareness is a door that opens us up to acceptance.

And I believe that acceptance creates miracles.

---


"The most terrifying thing is to accept oneself completely."
~Carl Gustav Jung


"Happiness can exist only in acceptance."
~Denis De Rougamont

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Adventures in Swimming, Part 1

I'm feeling pretty good right now. My grief comes and goes. I'm trying not to let external situations determine whether or not I am at peace but I..am..still..human.

So, I'll go easy on myself and be happy with my current state of mind until I'm blindsided by sadness again.

Thank you all for listening.

---

For those two or three of you that have been reading here for over a year, you will recall that I decided to take up cycling around this same time in 2008.

When I go back and read that first cycling post now, it seems like a completely different person. Funny how a 160 mile/two day biking tour can transform you from amateur to near pro! (not that I'm nearly even that!)

The 160 mile ride was my goal last year. My goal this year? A triathlon.

I definitely have the cycling bit down. The running? Check!

The swimming?!?

Yikes!

Now I've been swimming since I was a youngster. I grew up on boats, camping and swimming in the lake. I am a certified scuba diver. I've been diving on the Great Barrier Reef!

But swimming laps in an Olympic sized pool scares the crap outta me!

I'm not sure I was ever trained on how to swim laps. I also definitely don't get much practice swimming with two little girls either. The past 7 years or so, I've been perfectly content sitting under a shade canopy or on the steps of the pool with a margarita - while my little ones are swimming and/or bobbing around me.

And now... my first try at a tri is 2 1/2 weeks away.

I only have to swim 10 minutes. No biggie, right?

It is not until June that I have to do an entire 1/2 mile swim.

Then I continue with a 12 mile bike ride and a 3 mile run before I'm done.

I not only have to get used to this swimming thing but also doing 3 different fitness activities in a row.

No time like the present to start preparing for that!

---

Tonight I decided to try swimming for the first time.

"I can do this." I told myself. "After all, Soldier, who freakin' does the Ironman, never even learned how to swim til he was 30 years old. I can do this."

It was rough. I was coughing and sputtering and looking like I was drowning.

I stopped to rest briefly, maybe a minute here and there, but otherwise swam for 25 minutes straight.

My arms are so sore!

But I am very proud of myself. Maybe the more I do it, the less panicked I will be. Maybe the less panicked I am, the more efficient swimmer I will be.

I sure hope so.

Still, I think it's time to take swim lessons.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Conversation between my ego and my Spirit

ego: *sigh*

I am SO very low right now. I want to crawl up into a ball and beg the world to go away.

Spirit: Why do you think you're so low right now?

ego: Because I am tired. I'm tired of being the one relied upon by so many.

Single mom.

Single.

So very tired of watching the rest of the world get paired up and I feel so... jealous. I don't like that feeling. I'm more "enlightened" than that. I don't get jealous. That's so very UGLY of me to not be happy for those people.

Still...

Why

isn't

it

me?

What's wrong with me?! The single guy at work has someone now. Even TNT has someone now. Well, at least he gives me credit for opening him up to someone. Yay me.

I feel so very alone. Alone and UGLY for feeling jealous.

Spirit: Child, you are NEVER alone.

I have never left you through any of this, the good or the bad. YOU are the one who judges things as good or bad. To me, they are merely nothing.

YOU are the one who is judging yourself for these feelings you call UGLY. To me, they are merely nothing.

Of course you feel something upon seeing others seemingly happily engaged in new relationships. Remember you also feel something upon seeing others in seemingly not-happy relationships. Of course you will judge these things as good or bad. To me, they are merely nothing.

These "things", these "feelings", these "fears", these are all temporary states of what you think. Your thoughts are the cause of all of this. Those thoughts are nothing. They are not Who You Are.

Now you... YOU are something.

You are already that love that you are seeking.

You are simply choosing not to see it right now. That's ok. Choosing not to see it doesn't mean that it has left you.

ego: But I remember... when I was happily engaged in a new relationship with my Soldier.

*sigh* Remember when he was "my" soldier?

When Soldier and I were first dating, I was so completely blissful. Everything was right with the world. Despite the fact that my own father was dying, Soldier was my escape. He would hold me, nurture me, compliment me, LOVE me. I've felt many moments of bliss like that over this past year too. I felt loved and supported... not like I was doing all of this on my own. He was so very kind.

And now? He's back. He's frustrated. He's overwhelmed by everything.... He's trying to get settled though he will be done with his post in just a few months. He wants to get back into shape again. He is concentrating on himself right now... as he should be!

But I miss him. I want him to get better so that we can move forward. And then I get angry at myself for wanting that. I'm so confused as to who he really is.

It was so beautiful... and now its a beautiful mess, isn't it? Oh the last line of that song makes me cry... "The wait was so worth it..."

*sigh*

He wants to take me out to dinner and what?! Woo me again? Into what? He won't even BE in Texas in a few months. Do I want a long distance relationship? Does he? Can I do this anymore?

But oh how I wish he would be "that guy" he promises to be...

I feel as if I should say no and move on... but I am so very scared. What if I lose that chance at "beautiful" again?

I don't want to be alone anymore. I thought I could be happy as a single mom of two little girls until he swept in with words of adoration and a future together... now, I can't imagine my life without that.

What if I never find that again?

I just wish I knew what was going to happen!

Spirit: So you love him?

ego: Very much so. Yes.

Spirit: And this panic right now... Is it because you love him or because you fear losing love?

ego: Hmmm...

Spirit: You can never lose love.

If you are feeling fear, it is because you are relying on your own strength and believing those thoughts. You are not relying on that Truth inside of you.

You are focused on what was and what might happen. What about Right Now? Did you ever think that you are exactly where you are supposed to be?

Do you not trust that I know what is best for you? That I know what is the most perfect form of "beautiful" for you?

That "bliss" that you speak of? That "bliss" is inside of you at this very moment.

You tend to not notice it until you are with someone who reflects it back to you. They are but a mirror. That love is always there if you would but tap into it.

It is always there.

ego: I just want to cry.

I've cried myself to sleep for over a week now. I am drained. I can't focus. I want to be left alone to cry and mourn.

No!

Not alone!

I'm tired of being ALONE!!!

I want someone to hold me, tell me that they are here for me, let me cry and feel loved again. But I won't ask anyone for that. Everyone thinks I'm stronger than that.

Everyone already has someone.

Spirit: Did you ever think that the reason you are seeing such love around you is because you have put it there?

ego: No. I never thought of that. But I do remember wishing that everyone could feel the love that I felt when I was loving Soldier all year.

Spirit: If you are going to look at those people and their new loves, maybe you could let it remind you that what you are seeing is what you choose to see. And you, my Child, have chosen to see love.

If you would but remove your judgment and allow me to show you that all of it, even what it appears that Soldier is doing, all of it is love.

And all of you believe in this lack of love, as if you could ever be such a thing. That belief in lack appears to be the truth. Of course, that belief will make you frightened!

Trust me. Breathe. Stay calm. Let me show you My Vision.

I promise what you think is happening looks much different from my point of view.

ego: Ok. I'll try.

Spirit: That's all I need to hear.




"When you can look beneath their behavior that hurt you, T, and you can see the frightened child - it becomes nearly impossible to be angry and carry a grudge."

~ Notes from the Universe 2/18/2009


"You merely ask the question. The answer is given. Seek not to answer, but merely receive the answer as it is given..... (And) to receive it, (You) must be willing not to substitute (your) own in place of it."

~ A Course in Miracles

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Ambiguity leads to greatness

While in this space of "I don't know", I've been reminded that ambiguity can be a good thing!

It has certainly proved to bring out the best surprises in my life.

---

When I was pregnant with Rose, our initial sonogram to determine the sex was non-conclusive. So, we decided not to try again to find out our baby's gender. We would enjoy the pregnancy and be surprised at her arrival.

People were pissed.

I couldn't believe it but very few family and friends supported our decision to enjoy the surprise of the initial moments of childbirth.

"But what do we buy you?! What are you doing for the child's nursery?!"

I dunno... maybe something gender neutral like this:


At my baby shower, we received such unique gifts and clothing in all shades of green, red, yellow, turquoise, orange and purple! That "not knowing" forced everyone to use their imagination and think outside the box of pink and blue.

I've never been a pink or blue person anyway.

Once Rose was born, I added more to her jungle themed nursery and created a space inspired by the Monarch butterfly's yearly migration to Mexico. She even had a large tree in the corner with butterflies lit up in the branches and tons of jungle animals all around. It was fun and beautiful.

If it was a boy, I was planning on making it into a jungle full of dinosaurs.




Incidentally, after I moved Grace into the jungle room, I moved Rose into her own fun themed ocean room:





The seahorses were my favorite. There was also a family of dolphins, a mermaid, a huge happy blue whale and the ceiling was painted like waves from under water.



*sigh*

I loved those rooms in our old house. Looking at those pictures brings back lots of memories.

---

I am doing my best to find comfort in this surrender. I can get there sometimes, again if I am trusting and having faith that everything is as it should be.

Sometimes, I want to control it, I want to KNOW what's next.

But I also have to remember that my wanting to KNOW and my wanting to CONTROL comes from fear. I've learned this lesson, ironically, from observing Soldier and supporting him through a 15 month deployment.

I often wonder if this surrendered place appears as weakness to observers.

I could certainly understand that. I understand the frustration but I don't know what is going to happen. And any attempts to force or control are not going to make anything better in my life.

Something about that ambiguity leads us past it - makes us all think outside the box and see beyond what could be.

Maybe it is because we're not fighting that which is right in front of us. Maybe because we are living in the now. Maybe because acceptance of "what is" does actually create miracles.

And maybe somewhere in the "not knowing", I am uncovering my own greatness. I am no longer limiting myself.

Now that's a gift worth receiving.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Manslating a soldier

For those Jeff Mac fans out there, you may have already noticed that today's Manslation was about my soldier quandary.

For those of you wondering, "who in the hell is Jeff Mac?", you've been missing out on a hilarious male stand-up comic's point of view about romantic relationships, dating and understanding men.

Go check out my personal Manslation. I'll wait.

----

Ok, you're back?

If you've been reading here long, you're familiar (and probably sick of hearing about) that story. I sent in the Manslation request shortly after the conversation with Soldier that left me wondering what to do next.

I can't thank Jeff enough mostly for being a soft-hearted and hopeful romantic, like myself. I'm happy with his take on things, of course, because he only validated what I was thinking. (Funny how that validation thing works, eh?)

I love Jeff's honest, no nonsense approach. I have agreed with him on just about every situation he "manslates". I've also learned quite a bit about what to look out for in relationships with men.

I respect his opinion.

He's also just released a book based on his Manslations and his experience being a... ya know... man.

Check out his book on his website or Amazon.com.

---

So here I am in this space of "I don't know."

I don't know what is going to happen. I don't know what I am going to do.

"I don't know" are the most powerful words I've ever learned. "I don't know" means,

"I surrender to what is and I'm malleable enough to accept what is to come."


That said, I have realized that I am ready for what I truly desire.



I didn't know what that was until the past week or so. For months, I've gone back and forth between "I'm gonna stay single and just have reliable fuck buddy." and "I really want a true relationship with someone."

I'm now leaning more and more towards the relationship.

I find that I like myself more in a relationship. I feel more comfortable there, being loyal and loving to one person in particular.

I am willing and ready.

Is Soldier?

I don't know.

In this space of "I don't know", I feel as if I am mourning. I feel as if I'm saying "no" to that so that I can say "yes" to love.


Is that the right answer?

I don't know.


God help me to find power in my surrender. I'm tired of mourning. I absolutely give up.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Little Valentines



My Valentines and I had a wonderful day on Saturday. We had breakfast at McDonalds so they could play in the play area and use the McD's gift cards from Grandma. We came home and they took a strawberry scented bubble bath as we waited for my mom to come over. Mom, the girls and I then went shopping, lunch and to the movies.

After Mom went on her way, the girls and I made chocolate dipped strawberries, blueberries and raspberries. I built a fire in our fireplace, blew up an air mattress and created a "romantic" picnic area for our Valentines dinner of grilled cheese sandwiches, carrot sticks and our chocolate dipped fruit for dessert.

We played the matching game, Twister and Candyland. They had my complete and adoring attention all evening as we snuggled and eventually fell asleep on the air mattress in front of the nice warm fire.

All night and the next day the girls exclaimed,

"You're the best Mommy in the WHOLE WORLD!! That was the best Valentine's Day ever!!!"

Yep, that's how you do Valentine's Day as a single mom. You celebrate the love already existing in your life.

---

Speaking of romance, both myself and the ex have noticed Grace talking more about a boy at school. I decided to ask her about it the other day when I was driving her to her preschool...

T: Is David your boyfriend?

G: No.

T: Why not?

G: He's just my friend.

T: But he's a boy and also your friend. Boyfriend.

G: No, Mommy, he's not my boyfriend.

T: What exactly is a boyfriend anyway?

G: (looking out the window) So... do you think it'll rain today?

Ha! Already avoiding by changing the subject?!? At age 4!


All that I know about him is that he takes ballet with her. I remember the ex saying that boys take ballet so they will be good at football later. I've seen his dad. He looks like a football player.

Her teacher says that Grace and David play very well together.

My friend Gem is the preschool principal. She says that he's trouble.

Great. The bad boy complex starts early.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Meeting you where you are

One of the things I love about yoga is a phrase that my best friend/yoga teacher uses quite a bit: Yoga meets you where you are.

What this means is that you needn't force yourself into bending like a pretzel. Honor your body where it is now and over time, you will begin to see results.

My friend D said the same thing about A Course in Miracles... it meets you where you are.

No matter what your spiritual or religious views are, you can always find something that you will relate to in the Course and over time, you will find that you've uncovered more of Who You Really Are. In doing that, you smile more. You stop taking life so damn seriously. (I can get there. Sometimes.)

Funny, in the past week or so, and with all the mess with Soldier and my trying to force it to be what I want it to be, I've realized:

Love meets you where you are too.

I've read so much in the past year on how to attract my soulmate into my life, how to communicate with and understand men, how to move on from a broken relationship, how to avoid broken men, how to be the perfect woman for any man... its terribly exhausting to try to be any of these things if they are not who I am.

Don't get me wrong, each of those things has helped me in some way to understand a bit more what motivates me. I am actually more aware of my relationship habits than I was previous to reading all of that self-help advice. I still go back to many of them just as a quick pick-me-up when I'm feeling especially lost in my feelings of loneliness.

But no matter what you know, you cannot pretend to be anything other than who you are.


Well, ok, you can try but you won't be honest with yourself nor the person you are trying to impress.

Believe me, I know from experience that trying to impress, does not look very impressive at all.

People will be attracted to you if you are comfortable with who you are. Either this person will fit that picture of you... or they won't. You can't force it to be anything other than what it is.

I don't have to try to be what Soldier may need right now, which is typically what I do when I want someone to like me. I did all of that during his weekend home on leave and you see where that got me!

I've now come to realize that in order for a real relationship to work, it has to be easy. It has to fit, like a perfect puzzle piece. It has to meet me, and accept me, right where I am right now.

And I have to offer that same acceptance to myself.


**After some comments I've realized it sounds like I'm saying that relationships should be easy. Neither yoga, spirituality nor relationships are easy, but they should not be painful. They will be challenging, in order for growth. But pain? Pain means you've pushed too far and you are not honoring who you are.**

When love does fit, it defies all plans, all logic, all choices that we made prior.

Both of you have to be in that same space, recognizing that light in each other. It cannot happen with only one or it does not happen at all.

In recognizing that light, in seeing each other beyond form, true love really shines. Our combined light, shared, can be as blinding as the brightest star.

Shine brightly, my friends. Even if it seems that no one is noticing.

Someone will.

455 days (and then some) Complete


The above picture was attached to Soldier's final family and friends email from Iraq. I love the sarcasm.

Today is Soldier's 40th birthday and he is spending it on U.S. soil.

I just took a really long pause after typing that statement. I have been nearly hysterical knowing that this deployment's over. I can't even believe it. I didn't realize that I've been holding my breath for so long now...

It brings me such peace of mind to know that he is free from war now. The feeling reminds me of a moment during his R & R visit when we went cycling:

We had stopped for a bathroom break during our long bike ride with the cycling group. I came out of the bathroom and saw Soldier sitting with the other cyclists. The group we rode with was endlessly fascinated that he was a soldier on leave from Iraq. They asked him a million questions and he asked them about their lives. Many of the cyclists were retirees who bike daily and have goals of thousands of miles per year.

I remember seeing Soldier, talking with them about their miles and miles of cycling throughout their years. I stopped, for a second, and just observed him. He looked so happy in that moment, talking about one of his favorite topics and smiling that gorgeous smile of his. Just thinking of it makes me smile too.

I like knowing that he's happy.

When I think of the next few months of him preparing for his first post-deployment marathon and half-Ironman competition, when I imagine the freedom he will feel upon running or cycling along open American roads, when I think of the comfort he will experience sleeping in his own bed surrounded by silence, when I imagine him going to the grocery store to buy whatever in the world he wants to eat, when I think of how thankful he will be in the middle of the night that he only has to stumble a few feet to the restroom, when I ponder the next few months of a somewhat regular schedule with free time to do as he pleases... I feel such a sense of relief.

I want him to enjoy his freedom. I really do.


To all the families, mil-spouses and girlfriends who's loved ones are home safe, deployed or deploying soon:

I couldn't have done this without you.

I have felt such a sense of support from all of you - relative strangers whose only commonality was that you too love a soldier. Thank you so much for all that you have shared with me. All the ups and downs and tears...

If I can do it, even with the way it ended, you can too. I will always keep you and your soldiers in my prayers. May they come home soon.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Muffin penises


The kids were given a pet hamster for Christmas by a very good friend of ours. Coincidentally, I had been thinking about getting them a hamster or a chinchilla as a pet since they'd been begging me for a dog.

(Their dad got a puppy so they don't ask anymore. Whew!)

They named their new pet hamster, "Muffin".

Eh, I don't ask.

Muffin is an adorable teddy bear hamster with quite a personality. Every evening, we take him out of his cage and let him run around in his hamster ball in the house. He knows after his exercise that we will play with him a little and then put him back in his cage to eat. He immediately runs to his food dish to wait for little nuggets of seeds, peanuts and carrot sticks which he promptly stuffs into his cheeks.

This hamster cursed at me in little squeaks when I cleaned his cage and threw out all of the nuts and seeds he'd been hiding in his hamster wheel. It was the funniest thing ever to see him on his hind legs just shaking his little hamster fist at me and going all "Squeak! Squeak! SQEEEEAAKKK!"

He's pretty cute. Ya know, in a hamster kind of way.

The friend who gave us Muffin has two hamsters of her own. These two hamsters were left alone together and apparently were of the opposite sex. Let's just say that now, our friend has lots more hamsters.

Serves her right for not warning me about the hamster surprise at Christmas!

---

We're sitting at dinner the other night and Rose begins asking questions:

R: Mommy, do you know if Muffin is a boy or a girl hamster?

T: Baby, I have no idea.

R: I know how we could tell! We could put a girl hamster in the cage and see if they make.

T: (giggles) Did you say "make"? You mean, "mate", sweetie. How would you know if it was a girl hamster anyway?

R: A girl hamster would have the babies. And I guess a boy hamster would probably have a teeny, tiny little.... you know...

T: Teeny, tiny little what, Rose?

R: (embarrassed) You know, Mommy. You don't want me to say it at the table do you? That would make us want to throw up.

T: What would make us want to throw up?

About this time, Grace decides to chime in, exasperated.

G: (rolls eyes) Mommy, she's talking about penises!

Oh my! My Grace has come along way since thinking penises were lollipop-shaped vaginas!

Heh. Should I be proud?


Teddy Bear Hamster picture came from here

Monday, February 9, 2009

Loving logically

When Rose was but a toddler, someone introduced me to a parenting style called Love and Logic. Love and Logic basically teaches you as a parent to allow your child to make whatever mistakes they will make and to lovingly let them learn the consequences of their mistakes on their own, without getting angry or attempting to fix it for them.

I thought it was a brilliant idea. I think it was the first time I was able to relax a little bit about how I parented my children. It was then that I realized that they have to live their own lives and all that I can do is love them through it and teach them to bounce back.

I have tried to use the techniques consistently. Sometimes I am successful at applying them, sometimes I am not. I forgive myself, either way.

---

There are times in my A Course in Miracles group on Sunday afternoons that one of us will bring up the topic of other religions. Most of us have backgrounds in Catholicism, Southern Baptist, Buddhism, Judaism, or some other mainstream religion.

We feel that perhaps we've "grown out" of our religious beliefs and tend to lean more towards a spiritual nature than organized religion.

The topic still comes up and much of the time it is frustration at the blind faith that "those other people" have in following the rules or believing what they're told.

Don't we all do that? In every spirituality or religion, don't we all think that we are the ones who have the right answers?

This is when I have to gently remind myself and the other students that we were all there too. We were all believers of an organized religion or belief at one time. Yes, that belief may be different or seem much more enlightened now but even now, we still carry the same strength of conviction that "those other people" have about their own beliefs.

We are all the same.

And we all have our own path that we have to live....making our own choices and mistakes along the way and learning from the consequences.

I wonder if perhaps all of us are on the same path but at different growth points along the way.

---

I feel much the same way about my life and my relationships.

I see so many people who believe we're supposed to be a certain way, act a certain way, respond a certain way... but not a single one of us has the same experience.

Even if you or I did the exact same thing, both of us would experience it differently. Perception is very powerful that way.

I was thinking again about the movie I saw on Friday night. All through the movie, the poor girl was trying to learn the "rules". The confusing part was that there were always exceptions to the rules.

Rules schmules!

We all have life that we have to live. We all have mistakes and fucking growth opportunities (A.F.G.O.) that we have to make and consequences that we have to learn from. We all have experiences that we must experience. We all have beliefs that will be challenged, changed, clung to and let go of.

Who are we to judge what another human being experiences in his/her life?

Who are we to think we have the right answer? What they "should" do?

One of the girls in my study group says that we need to stop "shoulding" ourselves. "Should" is a bad word. Who defines "should" anyway?

What are our "right answers" based on anyway but our own stuff! Our own experiences, filters, perceptions, histories... your "right answer" may be the absolute "wrong answer" for me.

My path, my experience, my mistakes, my consequences are MINE. Sometimes the awareness of them stinks and sometimes I am incredibly happy that this life is something I've made for myself.

And I, like my children, am uncovering knowledge and growing all the time.

---

Sometimes I like to think of God as a Love and Logic parent.

Allowing us to make what we think are "mistakes" and lovingly letting us learn from the consequences that follow.

Without getting angry or attempting to fix it for us.

Loving us through it and watching all along with a big grin on his face.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

This is what it would take



Hope only goes so far...this is what it would take.




Whatever It Takes - Lifehouse

A strangled smile fell from your face
It kills me that I hurt you this way
The worst part is that I didn't even know
Now there's a million reasons for you to go
But if you can find a reason to stay

I'll do whatever it takes
To turn this around
I know what's at stake
I know that I've let you down
And if you give me a chance
Believe that I can change
I'll keep us together whatever it takes

She said "If we're gonna make this work
You gotta let me inside even though it hurts
Don't hide the broken parts that I need to see"
She said "Like it or not it's the way it's gotta be
You gotta love yourself if you can ever love me"

I'll do whatever it takes
To turn this around
I know what's at stake
I know that I've let you down
And if you give me a chance
And give me a break
I'll keep us together, I know you deserve much better

But remember the time I told you the way that I felt
That I'd be lost without you and never find myself
Let's hold onto each other above everything else
Start over, start over

I'll do whatever it takes
To turn this around
I know what's at stake
I know I've let you down
And if you give me a chance
And believe that I can change
I'll keep us together whatever it takes

Friday, February 6, 2009

Hope is a funny thing

Tonight I took myself on a movie date. Movie dates are one of my favorite treats to myself. I was excited about the newest chick flick to hit the big screen: He's Just Not That Into You

I went to this particular movie thinking that it would encourage my strength and give me more confirmation that I stick to my 'no', despite pleads that I change my mind.

The first thing I noticed while watching the movie is... damn, Scarlett Johansson is gloriously hot. Her body, her lips... holy wow! I love a woman with curves.



Hmmmm... ok where was I? Oh yeah...

I was expecting to learn some things about dating... and I did actually. I hadn't read the book so I didn't know how I would feel after the movie.

The movie was good. I enjoyed it. I did expect it to be laugh out loud funny (because I would be the one laughing the loudest) and it had its funny moments. I also enjoyed that though it seemed like dating could be very frustrating, hope is always a good thing to have.

It reminded me of that old saying, "Sometimes you have to kiss a lot of frogs...."

Yeah, you know what I mean.

What I didn't expect, however, was that it would turn my 'hope switch' back on.

The Soldier Hope Switch.

---

***spoiler alert - skip to the next paragraph***

All through the movie, the main character gets her hopes up with every guy who shows the slightest interest in her. She befriends a male who offers her much needed advice about dating men. She starts to get her hopes up with him, but he doesn't reciprocate. Embarrassed, she tells him that he will be a lonely man but she will actually find someone because she still has hope. He realizes that she is right, that she is the one and he begins to get all attached and stalker-like with her. Of course, in the end, they are together.

***end of spoiler alert***

---


That's when it hit me: Soldier was not an emotionally unavailable man until he went off to war.

Sure, he may have been taking it slowly at first. Of course, I did too. We were just getting to know each other again.

I remember when I realized that I was beginning to fall for him. I didn't want to tell him because I knew he wasn't there yet. Instead, I created some drama over something he said and got emotional.

Instead of calling me 'dramatic' or 'emotional', he sat with me, staring into my eyes and said to me, "I am not leaving until you talk to me and tell me what's really wrong."

I told him that I needed him and I wished he would need me too. He didn't respond but held me and kissed me over and over again.

We talked during that week and only four days later, I knew he felt the same way. He was stumbling over his words as he left me a message to call him. He was excited about seeing me the next night. When we were together the following night, he was amazingly feeling, loving, open. That was one of the most wonderful evenings of my life.

That was when we knew that we were both falling in love.

I'd turned off my Soldier Hope Switch during/after his R & R leave with me. I'd given up on the man I was falling for before he went off to war. The switch was starting to flicker over these past few weeks of his persistent questioning about a trip to Chicago to meet him.

I held the switch down firm last week when I finally told him no.

But this movie, combined with his promise to "be that man again".... reminded me of who that man was.

The man who would stare at me with a smile every time we were near each other.

The man who listened intently and observed my body language with every detailed story I told.

The man who would say out loud that being with me was his "high school fantasy."

The man who would pull me close when we slept together with a gentle, "come here woman", and a nook that I fit perfectly into.

The man who would stop me, in mid conversation, just to say, "You're so pretty..." and sigh deeply as he held me close.

The man that I would talk to for hours, when we could have been having sex! Something that surprised the both of us. We talked more and connected more emotionally than we did physically.

The man who said he felt safe with me.

The man who cried tears at having to leave me.

I miss that man. And the hope that he may come back to me... is sometimes too much to bear.

I know things are different. I know he has to work on himself and his life. I know that he, like all of us, cannot love me until he loves himself again.

But a girl can hope, can't she?

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Worse: The offense or the hiding?

A few years ago, I was busily opening the mail, balancing the checkbook and paying bills. Something seemed off.

We were short $500.

I called my (then) husband, who was working out of town, and asked the question:

"So.... it looks like $500 was taken out of our account at an ATM in Las Vegas. Did your card get stolen?"

Silence.

"Please tell me your card was stolen..."

Then he fessed up.

"Oh uh... remember when I went there for my company meeting? I pulled that out for gambling. I didn't want to tell you about it because I knew you'd be mad."

What the....?!?!?

This, my friends, was one of many reasons we are not married anymore.

He did this with SO many things and every time I would, of course, find out. How could I NOT find out?!?

The most frustrating part of all was that he would chime back in and say, "See? I knew you'd be mad that I did that."

For years I banged my head in frustration trying to point out that YES, I probably would have been a little upset..... but the fact that you HID it from me or LIED about it..... THAT is why I'm mad now!!!

----

Apparently, the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

My sweet, straight A, honor roll student Rose, has recently come home with three days of bad conduct in a row.

I had no idea. I always assume she has great daily conduct reports. I stopped looking at them weeks ago because they were always positive. She is doing so well, seems happy and her teacher has never contacted me with anything but praise.

Whenever she's had a bad conduct day before (only 1 since school started), we talked about it and I had her skip dessert or TV for the night. Not a harsh punishment, really.

But to see three in a row? Three? And she never mentioned it at all?!?!

I was pretty furious.

T: "Why, Rose, why didn't you tell me you were having bad days?"

R: "Because, Mommy, I didn't want you to be mad at me."

T: "But baby, don't you understand that I'm more mad because you hid it from me? That you didn't tell me about it at all?"

A few minutes and several self-disappointed tears later, I asked her again.

T: "Honey, do you understand why Mommy is upset?"

R: "Yes, because I had bad days at school."

Argh!!

T: "Ok, partially yes but don't hide things from me. That is far worse... much worse than having bad days. We all have bad days. You can tell me anything, baby, just don't hide things or lie to me. Ever."

My head immediately fast forwards 10 years to all sorts of bad things she could potentially hide from me. Ugh. I get nauseous thinking about it.

Dear God, is it me? What am I doing wrong to drive both my ex and my child to do this? I swear I don't freak out that much. It is me, isn't it?

Maybe I expect(ed) too much and they didn't/don't want to disappoint me?

It makes me ill to think that she can't talk to me. She always talks my ear off about her days.

I get sad thinking there will be a day when she won't share her days with me anymore.

*sniff*

Mommyhood is hard.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Please?

He said 'please' ya'll.

I woke up this morning a little anxious about hearing from Soldier. I knew he wouldn't have received my email until this morning and I had no idea how he'd respond.

He's excited about coming home, sure, but he's also been very impatient lately.

I'd actually cried myself to sleep last night. Not because I felt that I made the wrong choice in saying no to him, but because I felt as if I was opening up a whole new world for myself. I felt as if I were taking some sort of power back... like I was finally starting the new beginning of allowing myself to be... well, ME.

I was just leaving my office for lunchtime yoga when I received Soldier's email. It was a very direct and short email asking why and inquiring what issues had suddenly arose for me to turn down the trip.

I didn't reply.

How could I? There are so many reasons and I didn't have time to type them all.

---

I thoroughly enjoyed my yoga class and nearly lost consciousness during savasana. I felt alive and fully present. I was opening my heart chakra in hopes that I could be kind and loving in whatever response I gave to him.

I heard a message loud and clear in my mind:

He doesn't want to be alone.

OK, I could relate to him on that level. I always try to find the sameness with someone I am in disagreement with. If I can find where we can meet, then I can connect on that level and be as loving as possible.

"You're so not a hard-ass." said the CEO where I work. He loves to analyze personalities and give relationship advice. He knew it was a big decision that I said 'no'. He was encouraging me all day in confirmation that I did what I felt was best. But he also knows that I can't cut someone out of my life. Its just not me. I always leave a door open to friendship.

---

After lunch I was very busy and still didn't get a chance to reply.

Later in the afternoon, Soldier called.

He said he was very surprised to receive the email from me. He was curious what had happened to make me say no.

I let it all out.

All of it. Everything I said in yesterday's post and more.

T: "How can you ask me to not have expectations when I'm not finished mourning the expectations that were dashed just a few months ago?"

T: "I am an emotional, loving, affectionate person. I'm not sure that's who you want to see in Chicago."

T: "I know you have to blow off steam. I realize you're going to indulge over the next few months or so. I don't want to get in your way. I don't want to get in the middle of that."

T: "I'm hesitant about seeing you because I can't handle being around the guy I saw back in October. That's not fair to you."

T: "People in my life who know me, friends or friends with benefits, they know I'm intimate, affectionate and nurturing. I say 'I love you' to them and they don't freak out."


He responded thoughtfully. He understood my hesitancy. He said back in October, he felt we tried to squeeze so much into such a short amount of time. He said he felt guilty because he thought I couldn't relax. He thought I worked so hard to please him that he felt bad about it.

S: "T, do you remember the guy you knew back in September, 2007? What did you think about that guy?"

T:"Oh honey... I loved that man. He was kind, loving, giving, so thoughtful..."

S:"I hoped you'd say that. I will be home within the next few weeks. I am going to be that man again. I'd really like you to reconsider meeting me in Chicago. Please."

T:"I'm just not sure. At this point, it doesn't feel right. And I'll probably get emotional and affectionate again. I'm not sure you want that. I think you only want the sexual T but not the emotional girl that you know I am."

S:"What made you think I didn’t want the parts of you that get emotional?"

*sigh*

I told him how disappointed I was. I told him how I felt that he was being impatient and selfish lately. I said that I didn't feel comfortable with him beyond email and phone. I felt like we need to be around each other physically to create a real relationship again. A true friendship with comfort and trust and honesty. I told him everything I'd been holding in for months.

He took it like a man.

An honest, sensitive man.

He gently responded to everything I said. He understood. He explained further. He acknowledged my hurt and my feelings. He asked again if I would meet him in June.

I asked him to let me think about it.

He said he would love to take me to dinner to discuss it further.

He has lots of plans for 2009. He has lots of decompressing to do when he returns from war. And now, somewhere in his plans, he wants to take the time to convince me to meet him on neutral ground.

S:"It'll be like the Super Bowl, honey. You're the Cardinals and I'm the Steelers (his absolute favorite team). Chicago will be our Tampa Bay."

He's always been good at making me laugh.

We'll see.

I'm not sure I trust his motives just yet. He'll have lots of convincing to do. But the fact that he said "please"? That's a good place to start.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Sign of a new beginning



This past Saturday was a beautiful day. After a week of ice storms and damn cold weather, it was nice to see blue skies, sunshine and 70 degrees again. The kids and I cleaned house (yes, I've trained them well) and then decided to go on a "run".

I have to put the term "run" in quotes because Grace tuckers out pretty quickly. Our "run" eventually becomes a "run/walk", then a "walk" and then a "will you carry me?".

We were still running when I saw it:

My first American Robin of 2009.

When I bought my house last March, the robins were out in full force. Spring was in the air and the flowers were blooming. During a discussion with a friend of mine, she reminded me that all birds and animals are symbols:
"ROBIN - teaches us about growth and renewal. Like many birds, robins are good parents, and one aspect of this power animal is the ability to nurture oneself into true adulthood. This concept also relates to Robin's traditional connection to spring. This is the season of renewal, and when we let go of the past (much of which comes from childhood experiences) we are renewed, and free to nurture and serve both ourselves and others."

I loved the symbolism at the time because I was buying my first home as a single homeowner and finally filing for divorce.

---

I saw another robin this morning.

And today, my friends, I finally said "no" to Soldier.

He is almost home from deployment. He is transitioning his duties to his replacements. He is planning out his year back in the good ole U.S. of A.

Part of those "plans" included seeing me during a trip to Chicago in June to visit our high school friend Joe and take me to Wrigley Field to see a Cubs game. (I love old baseball stadiums.)

We originally began planning this trip before his R&R leave. I assumed the trip was off since we were no longer pursuing a relationship. However in the past month or so, he has been persistent about asking me to still make the trip with him.

In our last conversation, he asked that I meet him with no expectations.

I've been sitting with that for a while, hence the funk.

I talked to Joe today and told him about my hesitation. Joe encouraged me with words of wisdom...

"Shit or get off the pot."

---

Here's the thing:

Soldier told me, back before his deployment, that I probably wouldn't love the man who returns from war. He also said he probably wouldn't want to be around anyone intimately for many months after he returned from war. He has to shut down so tightly, emotionally, because he would otherwise be a very damaged and possibly suicidal man.

I get it. I understand why. I feel much compassion for how he is and how he does not love himself this way. Even during his R&R time with me, he admitted how "pathetic" he was and how he did not like this person that he'd become. My heart breaks for him because we both know that that angry soldier is not who he really is.

I still have to honor myself.

I know me. I am a nurturing, affectionate, loving, intimate, giving person. With friends and even in my "friends with benefits" situations, I am still this way. I am honest. I don't hide who I am. In those relationships, I feel accepted, comfortable and loved. I didn't feel that way with Soldier when he was on leave.

Soldier was just like me when we dated prior to his deployment. I pray that he will be again one day. Will he be that way in June? I am not sure.

I don't think that I can be around him and not honor who I am. I tried to do that when he was on leave and it drained me of life. I can't only be the sexy vixen he expects. I can't bring that and not the rest. I can't be that strong. I can't say that I won't hope for more. I've barely mourned the hope I held all year. Can he handle all of me?

Can I handle all of him?

Its not fair to me nor to him to say that either of us won't have expectations. I can't guarantee that. I also can't guarantee that I will be able to accept who he will be when/if we met in Chicago, whomever shows up claiming to be him.

---

If he needs an answer now so that he can make another plan for June 2009, then my answer is no.

I've rarely said no to him, only because I've mistakenly seen him as "victim". Go ahead and call it co-dependence - I've enjoyed pleasing him. I wanted to be a source of happiness to him while he was trapped in hell. I chose this; he did not ask for it. I knew what I was getting myself into. I thought he was worth it and I felt much appreciated and loved... until that weekend that he brought hell home with him.

These are truths I've known but not always admitted to myself.

I still think he's worth love, compassion and happiness. But so am I.

So I'm thankful to the robin for reminding me that I can let go of the past and start anew. I am nurturing and serving myself. And most likely, I'm nurturing and serving him too.


American Robin photo came from here.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Do happiness, do sexy

"Happiness is not something you get but something you do."
~Marcelene Cox

When I made a deposit at the bank yesterday, they handed me the above quote with my deposit slip. Since when do banks hand out sage words of wisdom?

Funny, because I do believe in doing happiness. And I also believe we can do sexy as well.

In my self-imposed funk, I find it ironic that I rarely feel sexy yet I masturbate like crazy. I can't keep my hands from finding the warmth of my wet flesh. I can't keep my breath steady after my mind conjures up imagined fantasies with lovers old, new and non-existent.

But outwardly, I carry myself quietly, shoulders slightly slumped forward instead of my normal shoulders-back-chest-out appearance. I don't feel like wearing clothing of any particular appeal except comfort. I close the door to my office and hibernate from the regulars who like to slip in and listen to my dynamic stories of friends, girls' nights and the vicariousness of being single.

I'm hiding.

You cannot have love for anything outside of yourself if you do not feel that same love for yourself. Your life is a mirror of relationships. Every person in your life is a mirror of you. Every love in your life is a reflection of your ability to love.
~Deepak Chopra

Just as a few commenters pointed out last week, we were created to love. When I'm lost in my funk, I am not loving, to myself or anyone else. I am lost in worry and anxiety.

I tend to forget that the sexiest I feel is when I am living in this present moment. I am smiling, confident and flirtatious when I don't worry whether or not someone is going to judge me for it. I feel comfortable in my skin on those days, when I can tell that we are all connected. I know in those moments that the energy I am sending out is creating the glorious reactions of love I feel from others I encounter.

Still, I wonder if it is an expectation of those in my life, that I will be that sexy, fun-loving, free spirited girl that lives for the moment. Because when I'm not, I seclude myself so as to avoid dragging others into the abyss with me.

I also find that when I'm feeling funky I neglect the truth of my body as well. I avoid yoga. My bike beckons me from its trainer, a mere foot from my bed. But I ignore it, yawn and bury myself deep under the covers with the mattress warmer cranked up to H.

It is by the end of the funk that I feel my age. My body is stiff, achy, sore. There is no way that this is the same body of the sexy girl who carries herself with such conviction on most days. No, this is the body of a very lonely woman.... one who cannot satiate the need for love or intimacy with self-pleasure, be that the form of sex, food, books, or music.

I have to pull myself from these depths and breathe life back into this body. I have to acknowledge the spirit that has never left me, but was merely resting beneath the epidermis of my funk. Once I coax her back out again, a smile approaches my lips. My shoulders creak back into their place of confidence. My legs long to be running, cycling or lengthening into asana again. I can hear my own laughter hidden under the selfish silence with which I had buried the sound.

I open my door again. Everyone acknowledges that I seem lighter. I'm seeking out the lacy underthings that affect my saunter with knowledge of what I look like underneath the office slacks and turtleneck sweater.

I am doing sexy. At least until the next funk decides to get all funky with me again.