“Live spherically…in many directions. Never lose your childish enthusiasm and things will come your way” – Under The Tuscan Sun
Posts belonging to Category Ponderings
I still remember the first moment we met…
not knowing that it would be the first of many more
I still remember our first kiss
I still remember all the times you couldn’t resist me…
not knowing there would be a time when you couldn’t even touch me
I still remember our first overnight together and playing in the snow
I still remember our first Christmas ornament…
not knowing it would also be our last
I still remember spending the night in the freezing cold in the back of the truck
I still remember the first time you let me down…
not knowing that it would not be the last
I still remember dancing naked in the back yard
I still remember when you admitted I was your girlfriend…
not knowing what you really meant was girl friend
I still remember when we twirled in the pouring rain
I still remember our first anniversary…
not knowing it would be the last
I still remember believing in forever with you…
when I thought you had the same dream
Lately I have been doing a lot of reflecting. This seems to happen every couple of years and involves a great deal of time spent just thinking and pondering about where I have been and where I am going next. What I started thinking about tonight is the culmination of the last ten years. It has been an amazing journey of fantastic adventures, hurdles, tears and laughter. I have several incredible friends who I have shared the journey with and who I couldn’t be where I am today if not for them.
During this last ten years, however, I have been almost 100% single. Sure I had the two month thing with that guy who suddenly started trying to convince me to sell my house so we could buy one together and wanted me to get my tubes untied so that we could make a baby and who, after just six weeks, handed me the phone to talk to his mother who proceded to fill my ear with her excitement of “looking forward to meeting the girl who is making her son so happy”. Woah! Wait a minute. Didn’t I just meet this guy a month ago? Needless to say, he didn’t last long. There was the other couple month fling with the guy who was so charismatic and charming, but younger than me and floated through life in a kind of Peter Pan sort of way. There was that couple month fling with my Physics lab partner in college. That one was easy to keep for a while because it was the purely physical secret fling. The 10pm to 3am thing where he knows to take off before the sun rises. For the most part, however, I have pretty much just spent all of my time with my best friends.
My best friends consist of three guys and one girl who are all very different but who I have that unconditional friendship with that is lifelong. The kind of friends who I can bare my naked soul to and they never judge me. I have known one for 20 years, one for 12 years, one for 8 years and one for 4 years, however, they don’t really know each other since they each spend time with me one on one. They are the kind of friends who have seen me at my worst and seen me at my best and every other shade in between. The kind of friendships that are most times completely drama free and when there is the rare conflict, it is generally just healthy debate or a “we agree to disagree” type of thing. Don’t get me wrong, all four of them have wanted to choke me at one point or another. I can be a little hard-headed at times, but I generally realize quickly that I have pushed too far and we generally don’t stay mad for long. Overall, we are mutually thankful to know each other and have a kind of symbiosity that is hard to find in people.
They are all four extremely different, but what I realized tonight is that the common thread they all share is that they, like me, are all pretty much perpetually single. There may be the fling or the relationship that lasts a while, but overall, we are all very single. We have all gotten good at being single and taking care of our own worlds and we enjoy each other’s company because it is comfortable and fun and spontaneous and interesting and friendly. My friends and I can hang out any time without worry about anyone else…because there isn’t anyone else to worry about really. Sometimes we can hang out all night, watch movies together, even fall asleep together and it is like a slumber party. People often don’t understand when I hang out with a guy for four years straight, night and day and rarely apart, and he isn’t my boyfriend and we aren’t intimately involved. It is difficult for other people to relate I have found. But that is the way it is in my life and these friendships are something I wouldn’t trade for anything. I have, however, always kept an eye out for that person that I can have some intimacy and passion with on a different level. I am human, after-all, and I do desire the kind of interaction that comes from a healthy, passionate romance. It just seems that I have fit more into the “just one of the guys” category in a lot of ways. My world has become a comfortable place for the perpetually single to hide out.
During these last ten years, I have had so many experiences and so many adventures and so many highs and lows. I graduated from college as a single mom against all odds that I would be able to finish. I started two corporations and worked like there was no tomorrow with an office and employees, but the economy and my being overwhelmed with it all just made it difficult to keep it all going beyond the end of the third year when I finally decided to throw in the towel and discover that I don’t want to live the kind of life where my career is 24/7 without time for much else. Yet I still managed to take trips and go on a fan boat in the everglades and go camping and experience the opera and many musicals and three years at Burning Man and just endless wonderful experiences. I have always been, within economic reason, free to decide to do something fun and just do it, and I can generally convince one of my friends to share the adventure with me.
Every couple of years I decide to try the dating thing again and go on 50 first dates in a few months so that I can realize why I prefer to be single. It just seems like a no-brainer when I go out on a first date and the guy decides that the best initial topic of conversation is to tell me that he never really got along with his mother until after she died. Whoa! That’s just a little creepy for me. Or the endless parade of cynical guys who seem to only feel comfortable in conversation talking about the downfall of our society or how much they hate their job or how people can’t be trusted or whatever “debbie-downer” topic they can come up with. Sometimes I would meet a nice guy who was fun to talk to but he would be awkward and lack confidence. Then there is that nice guy who seems cool, but I just don’t have an attraction for.
For a girl like me who has managed to raise two wonderful boys, overcome adversity, complete college, run companies with employees, renovate a few houses, and everything else that I am always doing, it is just not that desirable to have a guy in my life who adds to the stress level or who needs me to take care of him or who I don’t really feel connected with. I do, however, think about how nice it would be to interact with a guy who I can be passionate about and intimate with who is equally independent and confident and in control of his world without trying to control mine.
I did recently meet someone who I enjoy hanging out with on a different level and after a few months, we haven’t gotten on each other’s nerves. It is exciting and overwhelming at the same time, but I find myself smiling when I think of him and anticipating our next interaction. On our second date we both talked about how much we like being single and then we talked about “being single together”. What could be better than that? On our fourth date, we talked about letting things evolve naturally and not rushing. Wow! Now 100 days and 25 dates later, we are having a great time. No drama, no expectations, no aggravation, no irritation….just a fantastically pleasant romance.
So tonight I thought about the last ten years and how much I have focused on my growth and maturity and finding that center. I washed my hands, over the past four years, of the leftover crap from the early years of my life, and really have done a lot of soul searching and cleansing. Maybe it is finally the right time for me to be open to something more than just another best friend and maybe I am content and centered enough for someone to find me attractive on a deeper more intimate level as well. Regardless, for now, this is really nice.
The last few months have been quite a challenge. Everyone who knows me knows that I am the type of person that can juggle multiple balls in the air while balancing on my tight rope. However, instead of new balls being tossed into the mix, they were whipped at me from all sides and I fell of my tight rope many times.
Now, reflecting, I am feeling really good and am getting back on track.
These last few months, I have been financially strapped and working way too many hours just trying to get by and nervous about the economy and my lack of savings. Extra, unexpected costs were thrown in the mix with my root canal that abscessed and other things like that.
These last few months, I had my son’s court and legal issues to deal with and the uncertainty of what was going to happen with that. Thankfully, he received a year of probation and 40 hours community service. He is back on track now as well and working to get his grades up. The stress and anxiety of court made things very tough on him too.
These last few months, I had to deal with the idea that my father is moving out here to Phoenix. He announced this at Christmas and I had mixed feelings as well as the plethora of emotions that I worked hard for so many years to gain control over. During the last three months, these emotions seemed to be taking over my life once again. My father came out a couple weeks ago and we had dinner. Somehow or another, surprising even to myself, I found a confidence and told him so much that I had never had the courage to say before. I had neither anger nor elation, but merely found a balance between the two. It was definitely a first for me who has always been extreme in the emotions surrounding my father.
Through it all, thankfully, these last few months, I have had a fantastic interaction with a man who I see a couple times per week and met January 2nd. It is quite remarkable actually. I have been pretty picky in my dating and seek out a certain type of person who I have found is not very common. So far, though, this man has those qualities that I have been so hoping to find in someone. What is even more remarkable is that he seems to really be excited about me as well. The best part is that we see each other only a couple of times per week and the other nights we have our 30 minute phone call just to check in and say hi. We both have very demanding jobs as well as other friends that we like to hang out with, and no intention of getting entagled in eachother’s lives, but rather to anticipate our next interaction. It has been drama free 100% which is so nice. I haven’t felt anything but elated. When we are together, I forget about yesterday and tomorrow. It is probably the most healthy interaction with a man that I have ever experienced and it seems to induce a very specific smile on my face.
There have been many distractions these last few months and much weighing on my mind, but today I feel good and my head is much clearer.
Misty morning, clouds in the sky
Without warning, the wizard walks by
Casting his shadow, weaving his spell
Funny clothes, tinkling bell
You know, one of my long time favorite songs is I’ve Seen All Good People: Your Move by Yes because I have always identified with the chess board and pieces, and especially the line “Don’t Surround Yourself With Yourself”. I love the chess analogies in this song and also those that I learned as a child reading Alice In Wonderland and Through The Looking Glass so many times. My 26 years of journals have many references to the board and pieces and their meanings with regard to myself and my view of the world around me. It is a common philosophy topic that I found great interest in at a very young age. I will date myself here, but as a child Yes was one of the many 8-tracks that I lost myself in daily in our retro 70s style family room.
Tonight I took a quiz about which chess piece I am and was surprised to be the White Bishop. But the description seemed fitting when it said “Despite your unusual talents, you are often overlooked by your opponent.” and “One unfortunate fact of the bishop: No matter how hard you try, you can only reach half the squares on the board.”
I think that makes good sense…never having full control, but, at times, able to go great distances in one move. And of course, I think most people would agree that I traverse life diagonally.
When it comes to the Alice In Wonderland version of the chess pieces, there have been times where I have identified with the Red Queen….so quick to say “Off with his head!” In terms of dating and finding the slightest reason to rule him out and stay single. It is so much easier to be single and in control of my world, but even the queen doesn’t last long on the board as the lone piece.
Most of the time, however, I think of the words of Yes and remind myself that I cannot surround myself with myself. I must move on back two squares.
It’s that time again for me to rethink my position, determine the objectives and evaluate the plan for my next move.
I recently was at a friend’s house and saw this on a plaque on the wall. I thought it was perfect:
I do my thing and you do your thing.
I am not in this world to live up to your expectations
and you are not in this world to live up to mine.
You are you and I am I.
And if by chance we find each other, it’s beautiful
It’s so hard to believe, sometimes, that it has been so long. On this day, 13 years ago, my life completely changed. Actually, on this day, I had no idea about the change that was about to take place. At the time, it seemed hopeless, but was really just the dark before the dawn. On this day, 13 years ago, in Camp Pendleton, California, I thought my world was ending and that I had finally destroyed everything. Looking back now, it was only the beginning and each day, month and year since has been filled with eye-opening growth and clarity. What I learned is that no matter how bad any moment seems, there is always the next moment. For life is a series of moments and each one is a potentially new start. 13 years later, it is hard to believe the person I once was. I am thankful, everyday, however, that I was given a second chance and that I was scared enough to take it. And I will always be thankful to Mark for saving my life.
I was sitting at Denny’s in the middle of the night hanging out with Jamey and Ben and writing in my journal. I became inspired by thoughts of spinning and circular motion and philisophical ponderings and wrote the following.
Since it is a bit hard to read on a computer screen in the circular format above, I am typing it out below:
I have always been a dreamer in a cloud, floating above, gliding across the sky, collecting molecules of water that build up to an abundance capable of raining…creating sparks of lightning while playing bumper cloud with others…crashes of thunder…then I kick back on my cloud…laying on my belly, watching the world below. My cloud causes the sun light to be split into spotlight on the land…I roll around in the fluffiness of my cloud bed…floating high and free…for fun I ride rainbow roller coasters but never get too close to having my feet on the ground…I wish I had wings to fly with the birds and just float on the air…I wonder if I would be able to fly up-side-down…I would dive bomb toward the earth and pull up at the last possible second…wouldn’t it be cool to dance in the air…weightless…no more gravity…spinning through space like a floating top…I would swing on the pendulum with father time…spinning through life on a perfect circle…running around the dreams that exist in my mind…my orbital paths like a continuous circular scribble on paper…I spin, the world spins, the galaxy spins…a constant revolving motion laying tracks of evolution…a continuous stream of moments…like a comic strip of images animated by motion…always a constant motion indicating that I am still alive.
I know…it is kind of lame, but it was cool how I spewed it out in the spiral format.
It is Friday the 13th. I wonder if I should do something freaky.
17 years ago on this day, February 13th also fell on a Friday. I remember because I still have the calendar page that I ripped off the wall from Dukes Italian Beef where I worked at the time. I stopped up there to get my final check. It was late at night, and Dukes was about to close, so I ripped the calendar page off the wall. It was one of those calendars where every day is a separate page. Each one had a big red number on it for the day. This particular one had a big red 13. I still have it packed in my box of memories. I thought I would always want to remember the day that I left my home to go live with my father. I was 16 years old. I was a rebel going to live with a father I barely knew and leaving behind all of the friends and family that I had known for 16 years. At the moment that I tore that calendar sheet off of the wall, I was full of excitement for the adventure I was about to enter with my father. Unfortunately it was all a mirage and I have been lost in the desert ever since. But fortunately now, 17 years later, I am finding my way out of the desert and heading home.
Happy Friday the 13th!!!