Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Darkness

I retreated into silence for most of the day yesterday. I chose to remain silent so that I wouldn't have to share the darkness I'd fallen into.

I've been in despair.

Why?

I have no idea.

Fear, maybe?

Fear... lack of control... worries about the future... what could happen... what might happen... what may never happen...

Depression and false perception is pure insanity. Insanity doesn't make any logical sense. This is why it takes more than just a change of mind. Sometimes, our states of being have to be changed.


All that I know is that I feel emotionally drained, exhausted, used up and empty.

I'm working on pulling myself up again. I'm going back to some of the things I used when I weaned myself from antidepressants 5 years ago. I'm looking for ways out of the darkness. And ironically, yesterday I did not wish to lean on or discuss it with anyone.

Hence the reason for my silence.

Depression stinks. 

However it is how I've been feeling lately and thus, I must talk about it. The best way out of the darkness, I'm learning, is to allow in light.

Any happy thoughts out there?

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Grim Anniversary

On NOLA.com, New Orleans, LA is referred to as the city that existed before August 29, 2005 and the city that existed after. 



Hurricane Katrina changed everything as the storm that was always feared in this city that sits below sea level.



5 years later, the city has tried to bounce back with their laissez les bon temps rouler attitude.



And hey, even sooner than that, the Saints went to and WON the SuperBowl. GEAUX SAINTS!


Every little bit of good luck, positive attitude, prayers and selfless giving has helped the city to recover as best as it can.


When I think of New Orleans, I think of gumbo, poboys, raw oysters and seafood at Felix's. I think of Mardi Gras parades with my grandparents and trying to keep my little sister from being run over by floats. I remember jazz brunches at A Court of Two Sisters. I think of Audubon Zoo, cemeteries with graves that sit above ground, street car rides down St. Charles and beautiful Garden District homes. I recall hanging out with the members of Duran Duran around the fire fountain at Pat O'Briens and later, dancing at The Famous Door. I remember getting engaged to my husband at our little slaves quarters apartment we'd rented one October weekend. I remember the wedding we'd planned at St. Louis Cathedral and the Dixieland marching band parade we were planning for our wedding party. I remember my sister and I taking our mother to New Orleans in celebration of her 50th birthday, drinking too many Hurricanes and laughing hysterically as we convinced our mother to join us in a transvestite bar. I think of wandering around Jackson Square, the French Market and enjoying scrumptious beignets at Cafe du Monde. (mmm... powdered sugar...)

I remember artists, like one of my favorites, George Rodrigue.



I remember music at all times of the night or day. Awesome Jazz Fest, Tipitina's, Louis Armstrong, the Marsalis family, the Neville's, and Harry Connick, Jr.









I remember the heavy humidity and the bougainvillea that sprouted right out of the walls.

I can picture the fleur de lis, the Spanish and French touches in the architecture.

I think of walking and walking and never knowing what I'd see next.

It is a city I hope to visit someday again. I haven't been there since Katrina. I often wonder... what will it feel like... the city that exists now?

Will it ever be the same?

For more on Katrina and ways to help:

Progress mixed with pain (USA Today)
Hurricane Katrina Benefit Music/CDs
Habitat for Humanity/Musicans Village (Harry Connick, Jr./Branford Marsalis)
Make it Right - Brad Pitt's Project to help rebuild
How other stars are helping New Orleans

pics taken from Nola.com

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Puppy love

After the loss of both our fish and our sweet hamster, the kids and I have been racking our brains trying to decide what kind of pet we want now.

I was doubting we'd find another hamster like Muffin. We'd had him since birth. He was snuggly and happy and allowed the kids to play with him like he was a Zhu Zhu pet.

I considered a guinea pig, rats or even a hedge hog. But I just couldn't bring myself to get any of them.

Then this past weekend while on a phone call with my Gentleman, we talked about what I REALLY wanted.

"I'm ready for a dog." I told him, "It's been almost 8 years since we lost my dog... I miss her so much. And the girls have wanted us to have one for so long."

As he went on to ask why I was fighting it, why I was frightened of the responsibility, why I was nervous... I started crying. I knew then that it had to happen soon.

Oh universe, please bring us the perfect doggie...

***

I started noticing more dog ads on TV. I saw dogs every where I went. I searched Craigslist. I began researching breeds - I've always had German Shepherds but wasn't sure I wanted that large of a dog anymore. Did I want a respectable and expensive pure bred? Or did I want a pound mutt? Older dog or puppy?

I had no idea but I knew she was out there somewhere.

The kids and I started putting money away for her. We came up with her name. We decided we wanted a dog for more playfulness than protection. More snuggliness than aggression since we have kids over at the house all the time.

We were just waiting on her to show up.

Finally, on a whim, I searched petfinder.com and looked at the dogs available at shelters local to my zip code.

And that's when I found her:


My decision took literally less than a minute. I saw her face and was hooked.

She was the one!


And I'm the Mommy of the Year!!

Details: She was one of a litter of 6 week old Lab/Shepherd mix pups at our local pound. She may not be as large as either breed. She is friendly, LOVES kids and soooooo snuggly. She seems very smart but still clumsy. She's just a baby still and sleeps a lot. The kids are spoiling her rotten when they aren't using her like a rag doll.... her tail wagging the entire time.

All of the puppies were named after the Seven Dwarfs. I found out while adopting her that she was the one they named, "Happy". And that made me SOOOO happy!

We renamed her Lilli.


What a tiny bundle of cuteness!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Trust... Me

After a harmless encounter with a friendly waiter, I was considering that perhaps I should have a ring on my finger... so that my warm, welcoming presence wouldn't give others the impression that I was single and interested. It sounded like a good idea at the time, until I began to question that too.

Why do I require a physical boundary? Is there a way to send the same message without a ring?

***

Later that week, I received an email that a sex blogger friend would be in town. I didn't give a second thought to accepting the offer for dinner. I talked to Gentleman Jack about it that night.

He said that he trusted my judgment since he obviously didn't know this person I was meeting. But then he asked a great question:

"Are you meeting this person thinking that something sexual might happen?"

I hesitated before answering.

In that hesitation were LOTS of unanswered feelings, questions, fears, worries...

No, I did not have any desire or willingness to have a sexual encounter outside of my relationship. But yes, I will admit honestly, the thought of a new experience was intriguing. I would not act on my curiosity, however, because of the gratifying and intimate sex life I already share with my man.

I did feel safe though. I wasn't worried about the blogger friend getting the same wrong impression as the waiter. This blogger also reads MY blog. My monogamous commitment to Gentleman Jack is well documented here.

However, I did wonder...why was I still intrigued? Why do I not realize that I put myself in situations where someone could get the wrong idea? Why, again, would I need a blog or a ring to let someone know that I'm very much taken?

Do I not trust myself?

***

This pattern of behavior is part of my history. I had similar situations with other poor unsuspecting fellows when I was dating my husband. Again, I neglected to mention that I was taken and they were under the impression that I was interested in them.

Then there is the history of my affair, my doubtful questioning of monogamy, my sexual curiosity and experimentation, my sexual chemistry with women, my attention-seeking behavior...

I know this, after looking back on all of that:

I am ever curious.

Which isn't a bad thing. I believe it's quite healthy actually. The problem arises with this next trait.

I am sometimes restless.

Perhaps I have an addiction to attention. Perhaps an addiction to sex.

It is an awareness that I must keep in the forefront of my mind at all times. I must continue open and honest communication with my partner. I must accept responsibility for what I put out there and the situations in which I find myself.

I love that Gentleman Jack is strong enough to ask the questions he asks. I love that he sees me with love and understanding, even when he doesn't understand my actions. I love that he allows me to be me, while holding me accountable for what I say that I desire in a true, intimate relationship with a monogamous, loving man.

I only hope that I can see all of that in myself. I hope that I can let go of my past misgivings and recognize the unease before hurting myself again. I hope that an awareness of my motivations will help me to make better decisions. I hope that I can accept myself for being curious and intrigued... and still trust myself to not act on it.

I hope that I can find a peace within the chaos of restlessness.

Meditate or masturbate?

Surely one or the other will save me.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Just being friendly... Right?

I was having a particular bad day, feeling moody and restless, and therefore, not a very patient mother to my children. We sat down to dinner at one of my favorite local restaurants and my girls began to complain about their food.

I would have nothing of it.

I promptly picked up their plates from in front of them and took them to the waitstaff station to discard their food. A waiter stopped me and asked me if something was wrong.

I think I may have snarled when I said, "My kids are complaining and I would like to throw their food away. At this point, they can starve."

Yes. Not one of my prouder moments.

He asked me about the particular complaints and offered to change out their food. When he brought their plates back to our table, he also offered to bring me something else: appetizer? dessert? I declined politely.

Over the course of our meal, he stopped to check on us many times. He made small talk with me. We chatted about other local restaurants and things we enjoy doing. We talked about Facebook and how I was a fan of the restaurant's FB page. I asked him about his hobbies and how he came to work there.

I thought nothing of it. I couldn't imagine at all that this man had interest in me. I was a mess with my children and wore a very distinct frown on my face that day. I can assure you I wasn't sending out a, "Talk to me. I'm very friendly." vibe.

Yet, as the girls and I were leaving the restaurant, he practically ran across the restaurant to open the door for us and say goodbye.

Once we were in the car, Rose spoke up.

"Um.. Mommy? I think that guy really likes you."

***

Later that evening and still in a mood, I quickly realized that I'd been too friendly with our waiter. I'd apparently given out enough information that the waiter was able to find and send me a friend request on Facebook.

As I thought about my comfort level with talking to this stranger, I decided to talk to Gentleman Jack about it.

Now the Gentleman Jack from a year ago, would have FLIPPED his LID to hear about some guy tracking me down on Facebook or the fact that I was so friendly. This time, after a year of building trust and observing my interactions with others, his response was gentle laughter.

"This is funny to me because you're so surprised," he said. "See? Most of you girls are very cold when it comes to guys. Today, I pulled up at a red light next to a girl I know from my kids' day school. I noticed her and tried to get her attention to say hello. She immediately straightened up, looked forward and refused to turn her head. That's how most women are."

"But you," he continued, "you're ALWAYS friendly. You're always warm and accepting. You just don't realize that when you do that, it gives some guys the wrong impression. Many guys are surprised by it and think you MUST be interested! Meanwhile, you probably thought nothing more of it than 'hey, a new friend!'"

I felt as if I'd unwittingly given off the wrong impression. Then again, not once did I suggest to this waiter that I was in a relationship. He didn't ask. It didn't come up. I didn't feel the need to bring it up because I didn't consider that this interaction was flirtatious.

I began to consider, as I talked to Gentleman Jack, that I should have a ring on my hand so as to detract from the impression that I'm available or interested. No, I am in no rush for marriage but I am committed to my man. Maybe a ring would allow me to be my friendly self and no one would get the wrong idea.

As I thought about it more, and recalled my history of attention-seeking behavior, it really made me scared.

to be continued...

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Loving myself on my path

Last week, David at Dadshouse had this to say about my Notes to Self:

"Your posts used to be so heart-centered. Now you seem stuck in the thought zone."

I also received a comment from Livin about his own emotionally abusive situation on this post about abuse in relationships. He asked if it was possible to find peace in a toxic, unhappy marriage.

Because I like to think of my blog as a conversation, a sort of supportive group therapy where we can help each other, both of those comments inspired this post.

***

We live in a seemingly dualistic world where we have the opportunity to live in either heart or mind. Living completely in mind is hell, honestly. This is how I lived my life for so long.

Now that I am aware, now that I am free to tell myself, "Do not believe everything you think", I must inquiry.

With every fearful imagining that causes a physiological response in my body, I must ask myself, "Is this true?"

This is the entire premise of this blog.

I realize I don't HAVE to go through all of this to know the truth. The truth is already there, if I could only carry this awareness with me at all times. Unfortunately, I don't. None of us do. Even the greatest spiritual presences recognized their human weaknesses, questioned them and pushed through to the other side.

With every release of fear, with every wrong thought that I realize isn't true, I am removing the obstacles that keep me from this awareness. These questions are good. These thought processes and analysis allow me to step back, observe and move even further ahead.

This is MY path. We are each free to choose our own.

***

I find that it's easier to be spiritual when I'm single. Relationships remind us of our humanness. But they can also break us down and bring about even more awareness, if we allow them.

Mark wrote about a particular line in Eat Pray Love that also stuck with me:

"I don’t need to love you to prove that I love myself!"

His post also reminded me what I tend to forget: the primary relationship should be with myself, i.e. my Highest Self, i.e. God.

This relationship is easy to nurture when we have moments of alone time, to reflect, to meditate, to pray, to spend in silence. When we don't spend this time to nurture ourselves, well, we tend to go into the fearful imaginings I mentioned above. The overthinking takes over. We lose our silence.

To me, it's easy to build a strong house of centered awareness when you're single. That house can stand strong and still until a tornado comes along. What if that tornado is a relationship, a chance that your peace could be disturbed? What if it means trying again, allowing someone inside the door, even though there is potential for pain?

Can you remember to honor you? Can you nurture yourself and still be a loving partner? Can you find peace in the chaos, love in the fear, silence in the noise?

This was/is my fear. This was the fear that was expressed in the line from the movie. These are the questions I ask myself when I lose my center.

Our partners become our mirrors, our challenges, our greatest teachers. It takes more summoning of my will to keep my peace while in a relationship with a partner who challenges me but it MUST happen. I am a better partner when I love myself.

Those relationship challenges have also brought up fears that I've questioned (as I mentioned above) and pushed aside. The challenges have, subsequently, allowed me to find even more peace.

Perhaps we DO need to love others in order to love ourselves.

***

Gentleman Jack, in effect, is my gift to myself. Allowing him to love me is allowing myself to be loved. With each moment that I stop and realize the goodness reflected in our relationship or in the things he offers me or the support he gives or the words he says... I am loving myself. I simply wouldn't recognize his love if I didn't love myself.

Often, what I've found in the centered, light-filled place that I return to after my darkest moments of thoughtful questioning, is the recognition that I've "fallen even more in love" with Gentleman Jack.

What's really happening, beautifully, is I am allowing more love. I am loving MYSELF more.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Note to Self

Of course you're beautiful. Have you looked in a mirror lately?

More than that, have you looked in your HEART lately?!?

Oh if you could only see what others see...

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

When a tornado meets a volcano



Just gonna stand there
And watch me burn
But that's alright
Because I like
The way it hurts
Just gonna stand there
And hear me cry
But that's alright
Because I love
The way you lie


This song is amazing. I love the mix of the rap and the strong female voice. (And I'm not a rap fan.)

But the topic is very unsettling.


As long as the wrong feels right
it's like I'm in flight
High off her love,
drunk from my hate,
it's like I'm huffin' paint
And I love it
the more I suffer,
I suffocate
And right before I'm about to drown,
she resuscitates me,
she fuckin' hates me
And I love it


The worst part of it is that I had to explain to my daughters, who love this over-played song from the radio, what it means when she sings, "I love the way it hurts."

How do you explain this type of relationship? How do you explain the utter co-dependency and lack of completeness and longing for love, when it's really toxic hate and not healthy?


You ever love somebody so much
You can barely breathe
When you’re with them
You meet
And neither one of you
Even know what hit ‘em
Got that warm fuzzy feeling
Yeah them chills
Used to get ‘em
Now you’re getting fucking sick
Of looking at ‘em
You swore you’ve never hit ‘em
Never do nothing to hurt ‘em
Now you’re in each other’s face
Spewing venom
And these words
When you spit ‘em
You push
Pull each other’s hair
Scratch, claw, bit ‘em
Throw ‘em down
Pin ‘em
So lost in the moments
When you’re in ‘em
It’s the rage that took over
It controls you both


And as I explained this quandary to Gentleman Jack, he reminded me that it isn't only women who are caught in the abuse of domestic violence. Many times, men are beaten too. They just may not speak up. Or if they do speak up, they are not heard.

He asked me, even though we have an all female household, to not only teach my children about women's rights, but men's rights as well.

After all, he's a single dad who receives no support for his oldest son from a deadbeat mom.


But your temper’s just as bad
As mine is
You’re the same as me
But when it comes to love
You’re just as blinded
Baby please come back
It wasn’t you
Baby it was me
Maybe our relationship
Isn’t as crazy as it seems
Maybe that’s what happens
When a tornado meets a volcano
All I know is
I love you too much


Still, I cringe every time I hear my daughters singing about such a passionate place. The song may be a purging of emotion, past pains of both artists immortalized in a beautiful melody.

But such a disconcerting place to be.


Next time I’m pissed
I’ll aim my fist
At the dry wall
Next time
There will be no next time
I apologize
Even though I know it’s lies
I’m tired of the games
I just want her back
I know I’m a liar
If she ever tries to fucking leave again
I’ma tie her to the bed
And set the house on fire

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

First day... again

I originally posted this two years ago when Rose began first grade. This next Monday, my little one, my baby girl, my Grace will begin Kindergarten.

Now, you wouldn't think this would be a big deal. After all, she already attends daycare and is very comfortable being away from me and her big sister during the day. But there is something about going off to the big kids' school.... and the fact that it's my baby...

I'm gonna be a mess!


I Trust You'll Treat Her Well

World, I bequeath to you today one little girl in a blue skirt.. with two brown eyes...and a happy laugh that ripples all day long, and a batch of golden hair that bounces in the sunlight when she runs. I trust you'll treat her well.

She's slipping out of the backyard of my heart this morning and skipping off through the doors to her first day at school.

And never again will she be completely mine...

Prim and proud, she'll wave a young and independent hand this morning, and say goodbye and walk with little-lady steps into her classroom...

Gone will be the chattering little girl who lived only for play, and gone will be my delightful little love who roamed the yard like a proud princess with nary a care in her little world.

Now, she will learn to stand in lines...and wait by the alphabet for her name to be called...

She will learn to tune her little-girl ears for the sound of school bells, and for deadlines...

She will learn to giggle and gossip... and to look at the ceiling in a disinterested way when the little boy across the aisle sticks out his tongue.

Now she will learn to be jealous...and now she will learn how it is to feel hurt inside...and now she will learn how not to cry. No longer will she have time to sit on the front porch steps on a summer day and watch while an ant scurries across a crack in the sidewalk...

Or will she have time to pop out of bed with the dawn to kiss lilac blossoms in the morning dew. Now she will worry about important things...like grades...and what dresses to wear...and whose best friend is whose. Now she will worry about the little boy who pulls her hair at recess time... and staying after school...and which little girls like which little boys...And the magic of books and knowledge will soon take the place of the magic of her blocks and dolls.

And she'll find her new heroes. For five and a half years I've been her sage and Santa Claus...her pal and playmate...her parent and friend. Now, alas, she'll learn to share her worship and adoration with her teachers (which is only right).

No longer will her parents be the smartest, and greatest in the world. Today, when the first school bell rings, she'll learn how it is to be a member of the group...with all its privileges, and, of course, its disadvantages, too.

She'll learn in time that proper young ladies don't laugh out loud...or keep frogs in pickle jars in bedrooms...or watch ants scurry across the cracks in a summer sidewalk...

Today, she'll begin to learn for the first time that all who smile at her are not her friends. That "the group" can be a demanding mistress... and I'll stand in the doorway and watch her start out on the long, long journey to becoming a woman.

So WORLD, I BEQUEATH TO YOU TODAY ONE LITTLE GIRL in a blue skirt, with two brown eyes, a happy laugh that ripples all day long, and a batch of golden hair that bounces in the sunlight when she runs.

I TRUST YOU'LL TREAT HER WELL.

...as read on the radio by Kidd Kraddick

Monday, August 16, 2010

Warning: It could get a little crazy



"I have a theory," Gentleman Jack said to me Friday night, "I think that women have pent up emotion that they need to purge and... they look for ways to get rid of it. The next thing you know, their guy is in the middle of an argument with them asking himself, 'What the hell just happened?!?'"

Sometimes, I look at him in absolute amazement. I don't believe I've ever been around another man who is practically INSIDE my brain. I laughed and showed him this quote (that I'd posted on Facebook and a blog post):

"Arguments grow out of unmet emotional needs. A wise person will look for the emotional need behind the argument."
~ Gary Chapman

This conversation happened post-movie and yes, I had a strong desire to purge some emotion. And yes, since the movie let me down, I was particularly touchy and sensitive. So we did argue. We argued about my fears for the future. We argued about whether or not he'd ever do yoga with me or ride bikes with me or plan life with me. I pushed and pushed until he started to say, "Maybe you're not with the right man. Maybe we are too different."

Then, just as he began to show defeat, he battled his way back.

"Ya know what? That's bullshit. You and I are very much alike. And I have tried lots of things I never thought I'd try since I've been with you. I've been very influenced by all that I've learned from you and my life is better because of it."

As he went on and on reminding me how alike we were, how I couldn't possibly compare our lives now to what could possibly be in store for us, how I was future-tripping instead of in the present moment, I felt all of that purging of emotion. I couldn't help but wrap myself all up in those big strong arms and feel safe again.

***

Does anyone else have this experience?

I feel like a crazy person when I get lost in my head this way. I hated to see him back down because of my insane ramblings and his fear of not being good enough. I fell even more in love with him for fighting his way back.

But I don't want to have these crazy moments anymore. I hate the doubts, the fears, the worries. I don't want him to feel like he might have to defend the reason he's still in my life. Yet I LOVE the convincing arguments he gives!!

I do rent movies or read books just for the sake of letting out emotion. Don't most women do this? Isn't it good to just have a great sobbing cry sometimes??

Do I need to drink more wine? Get in more fitness? Go somewhere that it's not so fucking HOT outside?

Seriously, it seems that this man has a much more stable head on his shoulders than I do at times. The only time I see him down is when it comes to money. He can always pinpoint money.

Me? Sometimes I don't know whether to blame it all on hormones or expectations or lack of sleep or being overwhelmed as a single parent or thinking too much or aaarrrggghhh! The worst part is when he asks, "What can I do?" and my answer is, "I don't know... but this isn't it!!"

THIS is why I said that I didn't understand how he puts up with me. I can barely tolerate myself when I do this.

***

The good news is that I'm learning to open up more. I'm sharing even more of the dark parts of me that I'm convinced will scare anyone away. And he stands there taking it... even following me around asking for it because he can tell that something is eating me alive!!

He's the powerful cowboy who stands strong against the beating blows on his chest from the woman he loves. She pounds and pounds until she finally gives in, collapsing into his arms.

He's tough, gentle, kind, harsh, inside and outside of me.

I'm bending without breaking, expanding and contracting, moving forward by letting go of my past.

I guess I'm growing up, ya'll. A little bit of crazy at a time...


Note to self: Go to gym. And stop for more wine on the way home.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Eat Pray Love: A movie review in conversation



Gentleman Jack: I'm just gonna say it straight out: I hate that Eat Pray Love movie. I hate that book.

T: Why would you say that? That's not very nice! I love that book. The movie was disappointing to me. There's no way it could capture how the book moved me. That book changed my life!

GJ: See? That's what I mean. That book did not change your life. YOU changed your life! Ever since we got out of that movie last night, you've been all up in your head. You're irritable, angry and pushing me away. I feel like you're resenting everything. I really think you were expecting it to inspire you, or move you... and it didn't. You were saying that so many women were doing the same traveling as she did so they would feel inspired, right? You did the same thing! You had high expectations that you would have some holy out-of-body experience. Well, I have news for you - It's not your life, it's hers. It's not a how-to novel, it's her experience. You have to have your own life, your own experience and not try to be or live life like anyone else.

T: *sigh* You're right. That's exactly what I did. I did have very high expectations of the movie and I didn't even realize it until the movie was over and I felt let down. And the most ironic part of all is that the whole point of the book and movie was that inspiration comes from inside of you not outside of you....

GJ: Baby, I know that you've been feeling uninspired lately. And I've also figured out that you feel trapped sometimes in this single mom situation. I can tell that you want to escape it, be free and live your life as some grand adventure. I know this and I'm so sorry that I can't help you with that. But you know what? You're the one who taught me to look at the beauty right in front of me. You're the one who's not looking at this moment, right now and seeing the perfection. You're being ungrateful for all of the blessings in your life. If it's because of that movie or that book that you're not happy right here where you are, then yes, I hate it.

T: You know why I taught you that? So that you could remind me in times like this. Thank you so much, my love. I have no idea why you put up with me....

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Emo days and Selfish ways

Earlier this week, I had an extremely emotional day. When I feel that way, I tend to hide away from everyone because the least little thing will turn me into a sobbing, slobbery, teary mess or a yelling, out-of-control angry bitch. I'm usually unusually quiet on those emo days.

I didn't even want to talk to Gentleman Jack that night. Why? Well, he is a fixer. He wants to know WHY I'm feeling emotional so that he can pin point it and make it all better. I had to explain to him that I'm female and therefore, don't require a reason to be emotional. He didn't like that answer at all.

It wasn't until later that I realized the reason I was acting so defiantly emotional and pissy was because I couldn't fix someone else.

I'd witnessed it the day before. Complete and utter selfishness. And it pissed me off. It pissed me WAY off.

How do I react to other's selfishness? I get selfish. Then I get angry at myself for getting selfish!

Does that make ANY sense at all?

I now realize that this is a pattern with me. I'm like, "You wanna be selfish?! Fine then. Me too! See if you like THEM apples!!!"

Ironically, I wouldn't even be aware of someone else's selfishness if I wasn't feeling selfish too. Why else would I get angry because things aren't going MY way?

I had to stop and ask myself,

Why isn't someone else allowed to feel what they feel in that moment? Why do I get so damn irritated because someone isn't feeling or acting the way *I* want them to act or feel? Why would I want to respond by doing the same thing? How old am I again?

Funny, I didn't realize I was doing this until Gentleman Jack was trying to change the way I was feeling.

Are ya still with me?

It was April's comment on this post that made me put myself to bed early that night:

"Loving yourself is like loving anyone. Sometimes, you'll drive yourself crazy, but other times, only YOU will know what you need, and only you will be able to give it."

***

This week, I've also witnessed many people I know who are having marital problems. It scares me. I've already been beating a dead horse regarding the topic of marriage lately anyway.

I had a great discussion with Gentleman Jack about it. He completely understands my fear. He sees the same struggles with couples that he knows. We both like the idea of marriage but the reality of it is frightening.

"You know what the best answer is," he supposed, "honoring yourself. I think many people in relationships don't speak up when something bothers them. It's not until you're deep in a marriage that resentment builds about the way you're being treated. If that person had only spoken up earlier, maybe those patterns wouldn't be there. Maybe the relationship would be better. Why do we question whether or not we'll be accepted if we speak up for ourselves?"

It's true, isn't it? We do teach others how to treat us all the time. What will we put up with? What will we not speak up about? And if our partner doesn't respond to our requests, then what?

Even still, if you find that your partner is unable to meet your requests, can you choose happiness anyway, right where you are?

***

I also believe that when you're invested in a long term relationship, we put pressure on ourselves to make our partners happy. And if they're not happy, we assume that WE'RE THE REASON.

What if you're not? What if your partner is simply having troubles at work or financial issues or an emotional day? What if they simply don't want to burden you with their troubles because they are ashamed to ask for help, don't want you to worry too or don't really know why they're feeling down?

What if... they're not speaking up because they're choosing to feel that way and don't want you to fix it for them?

As April stated above - only you know what you need for your own peace and happiness. Only I know what I need. And only he knows what he needs.

Can we communicate those needs? Communication is integral!! Sadly, much of this communication breaks down when you're in the same home, the same situation, the same space.

Can we allow our partners to feel what they feel, without personalizing it or trying to make it better? Can we instead step back, offer love and a safe place to share?

These things rotted my marriage, I know this now. Selfishness ate it up. Then reacting to the selfishness with more selfishness...

Ugly. Vicious. Circle of resentment.

Sometimes, I'm thankful for the distance between Gentleman Jack and me. It allows me to remember my responsibility for my own happiness. It also allows me to keep my distance from his troubles, not try to fix, not blame myself but rather offer an ear, a loving embrace or a shoulder to lean on.

And he's thankful too. This, I know. Because being around a female on an emo day... just isn't a fun place to be.

"Arguments grow out of unmet emotional needs. A wise person will look for the emotional need behind the argument."
~ Gary Chapman

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Her own Personal Jesus

Anne Rice: she wrote about vampires before it was cool to write about vampires.


As a young pre-teen and throughout my teenage years, I constantly questioned my religion and God. These were the stirrings that pushed me to think outside of the box within I was raised.

This also lead me to be attracted to others who also questioned. One such author that I read religiously (pun intended) is Anne Rice.

Known for her books about vampires and witches (and the extremely erotic Sleeping Beauty series exploring sexuality under a pseudonym A.N. Roquelaure), I was also drawn to her personal search, her own quest to understand God. She, too, was raised Catholic like I was. Throughout her novels, each of her characters sought to comprehend their own relationship with God.

Does God hate me because I am a vampire? Would God loathe me for my immortality and the fact that I must kill to live?

These characters echoed her own struggle for answers.

In the early 2000's, Anne began publishing books about the history of Jesus Christ. She had reverted back to Catholicism and found peace with her childhood religion again.

Again I devoured her books. I admired her tenacity for research and the way she could relate to these fictional or non-fictional characters and their struggle with understanding the Truth about Who They Are.

I have been following Anne on Facebook for quite a while now and I love that she is so active in communicating with her readers and fans. We are able to see, firsthand, her considerations regarding gay marriage, the sexual abuse scandals in the Catholic church and how she feels about all matter of current events.

Recently, she stunned everyone by announcing,

"I'm out. I remain committed to Christ as always but not to being 'Christian' or to being part of Christianity. It's simply impossible for me to 'belong' to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputatious, and deservedly infamous group. For ten ...years, I've tried. I've failed. I'm an outsider. My conscience will allow nothing else. In the name of Christ, I refuse to be anti-gay. I refuse to be anti-feminist. I refuse to be anti-artificial birth control. I refuse to be anti-Democrat. I refuse to be anti-secular humanism. I refuse to be anti-science. I refuse to be anti-life. In the name of ...Christ, I quit Christianity and being Christian. Amen."

She has gone further to state that she is a follower of Christ not a follower of Christianity.

Obviously this announcement has caused quite a stir. Anne Rice will interviewed on Nightline at 11:35 E.S.T. tonight to discuss this further.

I could link to page after page of responses to her announcement but instead I will link to her Facebook page so that you can see for yourself, if you're interested.

To many, organized religion is their truth. I was there, at one time, and hold nothing against anyone's religion or faith. Most of us believe in the same God, a higher power, the universe, a True Self, or not. However, just as we all have different tastes in food to fill us when we're hungry, we all have different tastes in doctrine too. I believe we're all right and we're all wrong.

Each person's truth is true to them. It fits them. But it may not fit everyone.

Personally, I completely understand where's she's coming from. I humorously refer to myself as a recovering Catholic. I find it difficult to put my faith in God-in-a-box. I believe our connection with God goes way beyond organized religion.

I get it and I say kudos to you, Ms. Rice.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Let's continue this talk about sex...

My my my my my MY!

You readers NEVER fail to surprise and delight! I loved the comments on yesterday's confessions post so much! I hope you felt better, getting all of that off your chests.

I'm thinking about making it a regular feature, what do you think? Did ya'll save enough secrets for later?

If not, guess you'll have to go make more, right?

*wink wink*

****

The virginity stories especially intrigued me. Who doesn't remember their first time?!?

Gentleman Jack and I have had many discussions about the differences in budding sexuality between boys and girls. He has two sons and I have two daughters.

My ex used to say, "If we had a boy, we'd only have to worry about one penis. With girls, we have to worry about ALL penises!!"

True, no?

The really interesting conversation happened after Gentleman Jack and I watched the American Pie movie and saw how the father was offering his son porn magazines. I asked Gentleman Jack if he would ever offer porn to his teenage son.

He said he absolutely would. Why not?

But when I turned it around and asked the both of us if we would offer male pornography to my daughters upon reaching their teenage years, our first reactions were, "Hell no!"

Now why is that?

Why are parents more comfortable with offering their teen sons photos of naked adult women but not as comfortable offering their daughters photos of naked adult men?

My immediate reaction is, "Because that's perverted!"

And again I ask, why is that?

Thus begins the inequality of sexuality between males and females...

Then I suppose the same question could be asked as to why it's acceptable for girls to look at other naked adult females. I mean, personally, I grew up sneaking peeks at my dad's Playboys and Penthouses and WOW if he had a Hustler magazine! It was interesting and beautiful and made me feel all tingly down there!!

When I saw a Playgirl magazine, on the other hand, I just felt... ew!

Why is that? 

Now is different, of course, because some naked men are *drool*. I haven't seen a Playgirl in decades. Do they even make them anymore? Are they sold to women or gay men or both?

I dunno. Just seemed like interesting questions.

Then there's the whole lesbian action that you find on "regular" porn sites and movies. You won't always find gay porn there, no. Because that's "gay"... but lesbian isn't?

Anyway, that's where my brain is after all of those sexy comments. Thanks again for playing.

Totally made my day!


Photo from vi.sualize.us

Monday, August 9, 2010

What will you admit to?

vis.ualize.us


Since it's the stifling dead heat of summer, I've not been feeling especially inspired to do anything except stay indoors and drink something ice cold. Even sweaty sex doesn't sound as appealing as it normally does. Too damn hot ya'll!

So this idea has been brewing in my head today.

Anonymous admissions, hot sexy secrets or never-told-anyone-before confessions...

Sage does it with his Secret Box. Danielle even did it too!

I also found this fun single parent blog where she has a confession booth where you can admit that you, too, can sometimes be a "bad parent".

And I thought, "Why not? That sounds like fun."


In order to get us started, I thought I'd share one of my own admissions.

Gentleman Jack and I had sex within seconds of meeting each other.

Yeah, yeah, I know it's not the best way to start a relationship but thankfully, it has worked out so far!

Now you. Spill it anonymously or own it! And then come back to read what others admit to.

Ready?

GO!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Our love, as illustrated by Looney Tunes!

If you only watch the first 1 minute and 10 seconds of this video, you will get a good idea of how Gentleman Jack and I interact. Heh.

My big ole gruff bulldog who's really nothing more than a big softie.

(Feel free to watch more if you're a Looney Tunes fan, like myself.)




In all actuality, I think I actually did claw him up like this last weekend after having a really strong margarita. At least, um, that's what he tells me.

*giggle*

Tequila has an effect on me, what can I say!!

I love my man...

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Rescue me

by Cassundra Grace


Yesterday I realized that I couldn't wait for a rescuer to pull me down from my victim tower.

What prompted it was a conversation with my mother that left me in tears.

My sister and I are at odds right now because she chose to leave her husband for another man. Now this wouldn't seem like a time that we'd be at odds but you see, I am the one who reminded her that this is a pattern.

I am the one who told her to think seriously about this move before jumping.

And she, therefore, has decided that I am judging her and not supportive.

Perhaps she is right. I still feel the same...and I'm trying not to have judgment about it... but I do. I mean, I've been in an affair. I've been cheated on. I've seen both sides. I am not happy with the way she handled this.

In the meantime, she's moving on whether anyone likes it or not and hearing about the big, large life she's moving on to left me feeling angry, resentful, frustrated, judgmental and yes, envious.

I was a mess, after this and many other phone calls regarding this situation, because it tears me up. I WANT so badly to be happy for her. But dammit, grrr... I find myself welling with anger instead.

It feels like blood diamonds! It feels like she's creating her happiness at the expense of someone else!

I hate feeling this way.

I've also noticed, when I feel something that strongly, it is usually because I'm resistant to it. I'm pushing against it. It becomes MY problem.

- Why can't I be happy that she has found man after man to rescue her from the "he doesn't make me happy" pattern that she finds herself in?

- Why can't I be happy that she always has my ever-doting mother who takes care of my nieces and nephew when she decides to turn her entire life around?

- Why can't I feel honored that I don't have these things because everyone assumes that I'm always ok, I always survive, I can make it alone, I don't really "need help"?

Why?

Because, honestly, it doesn't seem fair. It wasn't me who was rescued.

***

"When you ask for happiness and a beautiful life, ask not just for you, but for everyone. When you ask for something better, ask not just for you, but for everyone. By all means ask for abundance and health for you, but also ask for it to be given to everyone. Can you imagine what would happen if over six billion people asked for these things for you?"
~ Rhonda Byrne


I had just received this quote in my email on Monday and I thought, "YES! How true!" A few days later, I was challenged with it after the phone call with my mom.

Then yesterday, I saw this one:

"No one experiences freedom until they stop pushing against others. The only thing that binds you is the pushing against that which is unwanted."
~Abraham-Hicks


Yes, YES, I get it.

In order for me to allow the goodness, in order for me to be free from these feelings of unworthiness, the longing to be rescued, the resentment for my single parenthood and all that goes with it, I have to STOP PUSHING AGAINST OTHERS' HAPPINESS.

I can't sit in judgment at my sister and her "rescuers". I have my own, in actuality. Gentleman Jack rescues me by being my partner, my cheerleader, my shoulder, my ever-present support.

I have others that I've taken for granted too.

My children. My ex-husband. Soldier. My friends. My enemies. The person who smiled at me at the grocery store and the person who cut me off in traffic.

And yes, even my sister.

How are they my rescuers?

They remind me that I have put them there. I have every opportunity to learn, to love, to fall prey to victimhood or to feel blessed. Every encounter, every relationship is a tower of my making. I choose what I'll see. I choose what I'll take. I choose whether I'll accept the love that is offered or if I can see that they, too, are calling for love like I am.

I choose how I handle what has been given me.

I now choose to stop fighting against other's happiness. I have to stop resisting the good that comes to others because that, in effect, stops it from coming to me too.

I now choose, instead of being rescued, to build myself a castle to surround that tower. A castle filled with joy, love and gratitude. A castle with open doors and an open roof to allow more blessings for not only myself but everyone who joins me.

But I won't wait for someone to do it for me, as I realized yesterday. Just as I built myself a tower of victimhood, with this castle of forgiveness, acceptance and love, every brick must be placed by me.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

I just realized...

I came to a really funny realization today.

Funny, because it's like, DUH.

And yet, it feels like I've never thought of it before. Or never accepted it before.

Lately I've been feeling bored and even resentful. I had lots of ideas circling my over-thinking brain as to exactly why I felt that way. Today though, in the middle of an irritable PMS kind of day, it hit me.

I have to do this myself.

As singles and single parents, aren't you all saying, "Well hello? You're just now getting this?"

And the answer would be an emphatic NO.

I got it over 4 years ago when I asked my ex-husband to move out. I actually got it earlier than that when I realized our marriage was quickly fading.

I got it. Yes. But I was nowhere near happy about it, willing to take it on, or able to not resent the hell out of it.

So, there I was today saying to myself, "Hey, I have to do this myself!"

Meaning I have to let go of the idea of someone rescuing me. I didn't even realize I felt that way until today.

Looking for someone who could help me take on the financial burden.

Looking for someone to love me just the way I am so that I could love me too.


Looking for someone to cook me my favorite meals, light candles in my house, bring me flowers, tell me I'm beautiful...

Ya know what? Some of that I do have. Some of it I don't. But I've realized that I can't keep waiting for it. I have to give it to myself.


I have to learn to depend on ME and love myself enough that it doesn't feel like a temporary solution til someone comes along to do it for me.

Maybe this makes no sense to anyone but me. I mean, I've always been good about doing these things. I do wonder, however, if being in a relationship made me slow it down and wait to see if my Gentleman would pick up the slack?

What a big expectation that neither of us realized?! No wonder I've been feeling lazy and sluggish and bored and resentful...

I have to remember to take care of me. I have to remember to love me the way I wish to be loved. I have to remember to nurture me and feed my soul just as I would do without a partner in my life.

Then everything else that he offers would be icing on the cake.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to the kitchen to make MYSELF some homemade ceviche. Why? Because I want some!

Go me!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Loyalty, Communication and... the blog

In my rant a few days ago, I stated that I wouldn't be sharing all of those negative feelings with Gentleman Jack. If I did, if he sensed some discomfort, well... my man would go into worry mode.

He would assume that I will end our relationship because it is too much for me.

Here's the thing that I've realized about myself:

Once I'm in and comfortable, I'm pretty much not going anywhere.

I settle in. I nest. I relax.

Now, this may be a good thing and a bad thing. I mean, I settled into my last two relationships too. Each of them started out great and then, as I began questioning things, I still hung on. I hung on until I realized I was in absolute hell. That's when we both called it.

I do it with employment too. My current job is really comfortable and fun. I love the little family that I've created in the small company that employs me. Could I use more money? Absolutely. But I'm so happy there that I cannot imagine leaving. If it began to really exhaust me and not seem worth it for what I get paid, then I would certainly move on.

I am nowhere NEAR hell with Gentleman Jack. I'm still pretty floaty and in love with being with him. Sure, the long distance sucks and gets difficult at times but it is not a prevailing feeling. I get over it. I pull myself together and back to the present moment. Then, I'm fine. Happy. Thankful for the blessing of having him in my life.

I guess I'm loyal. Until it hurts too much. Then, I move on, forgive and love from afar.

***

This, of course, was difficult for me to explain to Gentleman Jack last night as I found myself spilling my guts (completely unprovoked!) anyway.

Yes, I was hurting after our time together ended. Yes, I did keep my feelings from him... and everyone else in my life.

Except here.

"I'm trying not to feel bad for not sensing it and not being there for you," he said as I stifled my tears, "I mean, you did call me and I knew you were having a hard time but I didn't realize the magnitude of your pain. You hid it from me... and then you confessed it in a public place for all of these people you don't know?"

Ah yes, as I explained yesterday, bloggy support is something that cannot be explained to the non-blogger. He, thankfully, doesn't read the blog and has no desire to. He doesn't quite understand it... only that it offers me a sounding board. He worries that if he read it, he would get his feelings hurt.

Last night, he even offered to buy me a diary.

*sigh*

How can I explain that this blog, though public, seems like a safe and private place where I can share my deepest fears and pains?

How can I let him know that, though I process much of our relationship here, I am not saying hurtful things about him to "strangers" that may judge him?

I also went on to explain that I wasn't longing for our next time together yet. No, instead I was longing for what we'd just had. I was still in the past... not yet in the present... and not thinking of the future. I was simply resenting the fact that reality closed in on me when I wasn't ready for it.

I knew I'd be OK and felt rather upset with myself for my tantrum. Maybe it was easier for me to share that whiny irritability with seeming "people I don't know" rather than those closest to me?

I can't explain it. And as he worried more and more, I cried more and more. It was actually the exact catharsis I needed, apparently, as I felt much lighter after our conversation.

Perhaps I should have simply aired my feelings to him after all. And allowed him to feel his. Then maybe he would see that I always right the ship again the next day.

I mean, I have to feel these things, let them out, kick and scream at the unfairness of it all, just so that I can breathe deep again and not be choked off completely by resentment... therefore condemning this relationship and the communication that we've established to hell.

I don't choose hell.

I choose to experience what I am offered here. I choose to see the beauty, long for it sometimes and be blinded by it to the point that leaving it seems like someone is cutting off a vital part of my body.

Sometimes, it will really piss me off. Sometimes, it will have me doubled over in giggles and tears of laughter. Sometimes, it will completely take my breath away.

But all of it reminds me that I am human.

I am a human in love.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Feeling the love

Ok, I've said it before but seriously?

I have the best readers ever. 

I turned off the comments on yesterday's rant for a few reasons:

  1. I didn't want anyone to attempt to offer advice. I simply needed to vent.
  2. I didn't want anyone to remind me what I should be grateful for. I know already.
  3. I was feeling very unworthy of love.

Yet, as love proves to me over and over again, it will still find a way.

You all still found ways to send me strength and love with your Facebook messages and emails and tweets. Many of you shared with me your own hateful resentments and commiserated with my pissiness. Some of you even told me that it allowed you to feel your own hate, if only just to get it out of your way.

I suppose we all have our crap, right?

THESE are the types of responses that you can't explain to someone who is not a blogger.

THIS is the type of support that continues to remind me that there is a commonality in all of us, no matter the situation.

THIS is why I continue to write and vent and brag and piss and moan...

This is why I blog.

I love you all.

***

I was able to spend Wednesday evening through Sunday afternoon with Gentleman Jack thanks to the ability to work remotely. I love my job for that reason.

On the drive to Gentleman Jack's, I was anxious... both of us dying for me to get there.

Oh my, how that man greets me.

He met me in the driveway and helped carry in my bag. As I entered his home, I was overcome with the sweetest smell... dinner still cooking on the stove. After a good long hug and a quick change of clothes, he pulled an already made ice cold vodka tonic (my fave) out of the freezer for me. Then, as we sat to dinner, he looked at me, caressed my face and sighed that all-is-right-in-my-world sigh that reminds me, once again, that his home is my home too.

I had no idea that he was in pain. He had been crippled all week with a sore toe. The doctors are cutting into it tomorrow to determine if something lodged in his foot and is now causing a raging infection. I know a sore toe doesn't sound like much but when it is so swollen that your entire foot throbs, you pretty much don't want to stand or walk or get it near anyone who could step on it. (And I nearly did several times.)

He also didn't have his children and I didn't have mine... so, we really didn't do much of anything for 3 straight full days.

OK, we did play but in ways that didn't require him to be anything other than horizontal. Heh.

And did we have fun!

Even beyond that, we spent most of our time together talking - we never run out of things to talk about! We watched TV. Listened to music. Laughed. Really taking each other in with no distractions.

It's really no wonder that I would fight and throw a tantrum to come back to responsibility after that, right? It is really no surprise that I would get upset at the prospect of missing that special, extra love and attention.

Anyway, I'm not 100%. I'm still weepy. I'm still resentful. I'm still...

Whatev.

I'll get past it and put on my big girl panties again.

Thanks for listening.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

A really pissy rant

This is me... pissy. This is me... not holding back. This is me... choosing to allow the resentment, frustration and anger seep through with no filter. It won't be fun but it's necessary.


I HATE.

I hate this "transition" from being with Gentleman Jack to being without him.

I hate it because I was married for 13.5 years to a man who traveled continually with work when we were married and for 4 years prior to marrying him.

Unfortunately I'm WAY familiar with the transitory period of "reintegration"...

I find so much joy and happiness when I'm with Gentleman Jack. SO much that I'm practically in giggles the entire time. I also find so much joy and happiness when I'm not with him... on my own, focusing on me, my family, my friends, my life. I'm not necessarily in giggles but I do really love my life.

But I am losing focus.

I know this because this fucking transition from without-to-with sucks.... (i.e. I LOATHE the drive to his house. I hate the packing and planning and trying to get out of work and dealing with traffic and the long, boring, dear-God-are-we-fucking-there-yet, drive. HATE it. Have I said how much I hate it? And when he's driving to my home? Forget it, he cannot get here fast enough.)..... and the fucking transition from with-to-without makes me want to drive my damn car off of the road or curl up in my bed and cry.

Then I hate that I feel that because I miss my daughters like crazy but I don't miss the work of parenting.

And then I hate that I feel that way because being a mom does take work and how dare I be ungrateful for the blessing of being a mother? But PLEASE, PLEASE can I have some help here?

I HATE the responsibility of being the sole person-in-charge, trying to make enough money to get by, to buy food that I have to fucking take the time to cook, the god-forsaken endless amounts of laundry, the thought process into our talks and what to say and how to answer the gazillion questions that they ask constantly until my brain hurts, the house maintenance, the responsibility to make sure they are raised right, that they are surrounded by good people, that they maintain a healthy relationship with each other, me, their father, their friends... the heavy, enormous burden of the health of their minds, their bodies, their souls, their lives.

I say all of that with HUGE apologies to parents who are actually parenting alone, with no help from friends or family... least of all, the father of said children. I, at least, have THAT.

Then I hate myself for apologizing for how I feel right now... knowing that these feelings will pass.

I hate all the fucking past baggage that each of us, Gentleman Jack and myself, dredge up in the midst of a seemingly harmless misunderstanding. And I hate all of the fears that arise from that baggage. And I hate how those fears threaten the very moment that he and I are attempting to share together (as rare as they are) and that we have to claw and fight within ourselves to bring them up, talk about them and shoo them away to spare our beautiful time together.

I hate that this misunderstanding happened TODAY, this morning, our last morning together until "next time"... a time that has yet to be determined. I hate that it was our missing each other ALREADY that stirred up such crap.

I hate that there are some things I feel, like this HATE, that I won't share with Gentleman Jack (though, he will undoubtedly be able to "feel" it), because if I do, then he will worry that I grow tired of this long-distance relationship and wish to end it.

I hate that my ex-husband has plans on Sunday night and rushes our children out of the door. I hate it because those plans are more than likely with a new girlfriend. I hate the jealousy I feel... not of the new girlfriend but of the nearness of the new girlfriend. How fortunate is he to actually have a local love with which to make Sunday night plans....

I hate that I don't have the balls to mention to my ex-husband how badly I want to be with Gentleman Jack but how I cannot bear to choose a future with the man I love because I'd be taking my children further away from what little time they see their dad already.

And I hate that I'm choosing their well-being over my own. Then I hate that I feel that way.

I  hate that I received a short reconnection email from Soldier and cannot decide if I should respond or not. I hate that part of me wants to but isn't sure that I should. I hate that I long for his friendship but am not sure that it is the healthiest friendship I could have.

I hate that I witnessed my poor grandfather break down in tears about his nearly 94 years of memories... memories and things that he's never shared with anyone and he is now sharing with me. I hate that he is excruciatingly lonely and I cannot give him more.

I hate that SO many expect SO much from me and sometimes I simply get tired of giving. I need to be filled up again. And I hate that the only person to give me that is me.

I hate that I wanted to talk to someone about all of this hate... someone other than Gentleman Jack ... and as usual, no one answered their fucking phone.

I hate that people are now calling me back but I don't fucking feel like talking anymore.

I hate that my daughters are in the other room avoiding me because they know that Mommy is in a pissy mood. This, after I've been away from them since Wednesday and long for nothing more than their snuggles.

I hate that this pissiness makes me completely resistant to any love offered to me at this time. (Which is why I'm turning off comments on this post.)

I hate that I drove past all of the triathletes that participated in the Louisiana triathlon today. I hate it because that was the last triathlon I did and it has been 1 year already. I hate that I have not made efforts to compete again.

I hate all of the work it takes to train to compete again.

I hate that I don't feel like doing all of the work it takes to compete again.... or anything else for that matter.

I hate that it's 8:30 at night and I've yet to eat dinner because I don't fucking feel like cooking anything and I probably don't have anything to cook anyway....

I hate that I'm completely exhausted from all of this hate and yet I still have so much responsibility left to tackle before this day is over.

I hate that my bed is 10 feet from me and I'm not in it.

I hate that Gentleman Jack isn't in it either.

I hate these tears.

I hate.