30. Nothing but a number.

james pepper illustration

Approaching 30.

I think this may be the most settled and calming period I’ve had in a long time. With aging comes the hard swallow of realities that your life may not be what you thought it would be by the time you reach age X. But in lieu of panic, there’s something very ‘Ok’ about it, too.

My highs and lows are less dramatic. There’s less drama for the sake of drama, born out of boredom or needing entertainment.

I’m sitting in a coffee shop, having a green tea and hearing the barista discuss with a patron her rekindling of romance with a previous boyfriend and the ease within which they may or may not be getting back together. I recognize her nervous casualness in which she describes their interactions. I’ve told those same lies at times. That, “No…it’s not that big of a deal. We’ll see what happens…I’m just being the bigger person” et al.

When inside I know she’s eager to make this work again this time. To fix whatever broke down before and to revisit this relationship with fresh eyes and fresh breathe and more resilience toward being totally open. But there is a moment when you do realize that you can’t make two people be a thing sometimes.

I know it well. And it makes me happy. To know that we’re all built from the same kind of DNA. That we’ve got all the same basic emotional blueprint and capacity.

How does that relate to being older? I don’t know. I think if I sat here and heard her three years ago I would have had less of an appreciative smirk upon my face hearing her. In fact, I probably would have stuffed my headphones in my ears to avoid such drivel.

But now closer to 30 than 20, I’m loving the mellowness that comes with age. The comfort that most people describe – comfort with just being who you are and being less worried about comparing yourself to other people, changing yourself for the sake of another, and not punishing yourself every day with self-doubt, self-loathing, self-denial, self-punishment.

The fact that as you get older, you become closer to yourself.

I certainly thought I’d be further along by the time I hit 30. In terms of money, in terms of career, in terms of dating – that all of these things combined would have eventually led me to feeling more ‘successful’ or ‘fulfilled.’

Truth be told, I think all of these things happened and I do feel pretty accomplished. I’ve pushed myself – in some of the most extreme and in some of the most minuscule ways – to leave my comfort zone in terms of all the things above and more.

I’ve been addicted to constant change and yet I love the static nature of my core lifestyle.

Don’t get me wrong – for the most part, I’m a misanthropist through and through. But as I get older, I find more sentimentality in the little things in life. The acts of kindness I witness which inspire me to be more kind. The acts of humility that inspire me to be more humble and to listen more and talk less. The acts of care in the smallest of ways that inspire me to constantly turn down the dial on my dramatic tendencies.

I’ve learned through so many bruised-knee moments emotionally that my walls erected around my heart typically don’t serve me well. And that there’s something more empowering about being totally forthright and tending to my own well-being first rather than compromising for the sake of trying to ‘keep’ another around.

And at 30, I’m finally at a place where it’s much harder for me to justify being in a relationship I don’t feel utterly tingly about from the get-go. And I realize that it’s a battle of being someone who is holding out for that when it may never come. That what I’m expecting may just be illusory.

I used to pity people who settled down for the sake of settling down. But no more. I get it. Sometimes you just want the company. You just want the warm body and companionship there. It’s about forging a life together, regardless of all the other ‘stuff.’ I think I tried to do it. But I couldn’t. I’m not one to be backed into a corner – whether by another or of my own choosing.

I want what I want. And I’m not taking whatever comes my way. And that attitude could be COMPLETELY detrimental and leave me a sad spinster.

If that’s the case, it’s okay, too. I may just be one of those people who is alone. A wild horse that cannot be saddled by any person. I have a hard time kneeling in deference to anyone. There have been less than a handful who have made me want to.

So if the one that makes me want to wants to in return, I’ll follow indefinitely.

Always the case of being ‘all chips in’ when I feel IT. And when I don’t, I cannot fake it.

The same could be said for every part of my life – job, hobbies, etc. I become oddly addicted to the new high of anything that I’m interested in. And when I’m done, I’m completely done.

With age also comes the beauty in being less hurt by life. That when things do not go your way, it’s not panic-button worthy. And the things that are meant to be will always manifest themselves (repeatedly in some cases). I believe in ‘signs,’ if you will.

People come and go and return. In most cases, it doesn’t make any sense and for someone like me, I want to know why. But there’s never a reason. Making peace with that…that only comes with learning acceptance. And *ding* not being in control of everything.

I appreciate these moments more. Instead of being dismissive or distrustful, I choose to see the silver lining.

It’s a moment to reflect on what IS going right and to be more grateful for the things that have happened as if by chance and luck. It’s a choice in what you choose to focus your reflection upon. Pain or personal growth?

Perhaps familial health scares and my own fear of death (or let’s be honest – control of ANYTHING), make me more “So what, who cares” about life.

And that’s helped in relationship building, demolishing and reconstruction. When you see your own steadfastness emerge, you see how things in life aren’t SO delicate or precious. It all comes and goes in a blink of an eye – so just bravely face the day and go for what you want.

“Luck is where the crossroads of opportunity and preparation meet.” A quote allegedly by Seneca, a first-century Roman philosopher. Later appropriated & revised by Oprah. But the sentiment is true.

I think that there is a lot to be said for going through practice & preparation before you are then presented with the opportunity to act.

In many ways, I’m still learning every day. About myself. About others. About how to engage in the dance between the two.

Sanding down the rough edges, as it were. And happy for the experiences drifting in my life. And those that drift away. All the while having proverbial popcorn to enjoy the show, not knowing how it will end or the twists/turns in the story.

Getting older means being more forgiving toward one’s self in terms of trying to ‘be something.’ What if existing happily is enough of a lasting impression upon this planet? What if kindness is the most impressive feat you could accomplish while you were here?

What if the entire point of being here is to just soak it all in? And just nod in simple agreement.

I’m eager and excited for the crazy and winding path that lay ahead of me with brambles, exquisite vistas and delightful road warrior companions that join me as our narratives intertwine for however long they might. And being able to revel in the stories of others and just like a book, step into someone else’s experience and feel the emotional impact and be thankful for the sharing.

So here’s to 2013. Turning 30. Turning over new leafs. And turning pages as I continue writing my story. No rules for foolish hearts, as they say…

Photo courtesy James Pepper/Flickr.

The unfinished story.

prekiss flickr olivia bee

I keep coming back to this song.

Something about this is a reminder that grudges are nothing but a waste of time and feeling. Also a flag that you will always have a new perspective on people, events, places as you get older. And I see how the things you carry begin to shift their place and weight within your being as you age. Pain lessons, love deepens, awareness widens.

Nothing is ever predictable. And you will always have a new perspective on love, whether new or old.

People have to go on journeys. Some journeys start alone. Sometimes they start with another person. Sometimes people only start journeys after they part ways from another. Despite the cause, the journey is necessary.

And you never get to go back to who you were before.

And the wisdom with age is that over time, you’re glad you won’t go back. Because what you went through gave you so much more.

Hell may be other people, but nothing enriches your experience more than the wisdom, approach, attitude and spirit of other people – no matter the length of time they spend with you in your own narrative.

Photo courtesy Oliva Bee/Flickr.

Having sex with the city.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ftj7yH8nQXg

When you tell people you’ve never seen an episode of ‘Sex and the City,’ you are met with a myriad of responses. Most of them are horrified guffaws followed with a mandate of, “You HAVE to watch it.” With that kind of pressure, I caved.

Part of my curiosity about this show came from my straightest gay friend who, when I texted him about a ridiculous morning rendezvous gone awry, he responded with:

Since I was a gay guy about the town and frequently shared my own misadventures with friends, I was getting comments like this a lot.

But up until then, all I really knew about the show was that there were four women, and Kim Cattrall (whom up until this point I only recognized as a mannequin come to life and a backstabbing Vulcan) was a slut. Sarah Jessica Parker played a quirky writer detailing her life in the city. And everyone was telling me that my ex was my Mr. Big. I mean, yes, I loved him a lot, but was my ex actually going to end up being my Big? I didn’t know what that meant except that they had turmoil and ended up together – and that was not going to happen for me.

Fortunately said friend above owned the entire series on DVD and brought each season’s sleeve to work in a plastic Jewel bag, which seems entirely appropriate when smuggling such goods on public transit. He plopped them on my desk and offered me a “Go in God,” his standard Oprah rhetoric.

So the gauntlet had been laid down. No longer was I able to cop out and say, “Well, it’s not on tv” or “I can’t download all of that.” Here it was, sex…in my face. I’ve never been one to turn that kind of offer down. (That’s not true – it always depends on who is offering.)

One Saturday afternoon I decided to plop in disc 1 and just let it roll. I’d been warned about the awkward camera talking, the terrible Carrie hair, the weird story lines in the first season. However, within a day I had completed it, knowing that most people considered it the least compelling series of the show.

Over the course of the next month or so, I plowed through each and every episode. Come to think of it, I guess Samantha did her fair share of plowing away, too.

My heart melted over Steve & Miranda, I went from liking Charlotte to loathing her, and Samantha’s brazen attitude toward sex (and deep seeded fear toward love) resonated with me in my present dating state more than the rest. Clearly. See the linked story above.

But really these women just were four parts of a whole, split out for the sake of celluloid to let us easily (and marketably so) choose which one we were most like.

But like any woman (or human for that matter), I recognized parts and traits of all of these women within myself. I’m a hopeless romantic like Carrie. I’m a ball-buster like Miranda. I’m a proud whore like Samantha. I’m a doe-eyed optimist like Charlotte, albeit very infrequently.

And while that concept in and of itself is what makes the show amazing, it’s interesting to think of the zeitgeist of this series and how it came about at the perfect time in our culture, in television, in a moment where women really came to the forefront of their own identity. It allowed women to be all these facets without shame (again, women could say “I’m a Miranda” and be proud of that). Such a series just doesn’t seem as relevant or ground-breaking today because it was just that. Perfect timing.

But if the show was truly only about women pursuing relationship and sex, it would have fallen flat. In some successful ways (as well as less than stellar ways), it went from frivolity to actual substance. Characters who were punch-line providers to deeply rooted characters with psyches and emotional baggage behind the cosmos.

For instance, so many times I found myself HATING Carrie for the choices she made regarding Big – hell, really any of her relationships. But I understood why she did. I’d been there. I knew the motivations for her choices. I related.

I’d held out hope in a hopeless relationship. Even though Carrie got her man in the end, my life is no fairytale and my own romance that’s been heralded as ‘Big’ is not destined to play itself out.

And while part of me does romanticize the thought of that rekindling, I know better. Unlike Carrie, I closed the door to a past I knew wasn’t going to be good for me to revisit.

But that’s the tricky part about love – it stays with you, whether the person does or not.

You acknowledge it and take from it at least one lesson on how to improve yourself in the next relationship you’re in. Try as you might to not compare, you may always do so. But know that sometimes comparison isn’t bad – especially if the person standing in front of you today ready to love you is about to surpass and overtake the past. But make no mistake, a past love can’t be erased or replaced or…ahem…under rug swept.

I’ve had my Aiden. I’ve had my Petrovsky. And I’ve had all the others who weren’t important enough to get a name. And there are still many foreseeable years of tragic and magical moments of dating ahead of me. And maybe those who I’ve assigned as the ‘big ones’ will be replaced in time with more experience, more love, more sex and more meaningful, beautiful-spirited men.

As the ladies asked, maybe not all soul mates are the people that you share a bed with? Sure you can love him or her in a way that’s unfathomable to others. But your friends – and I’m talking lifelong friends – are on a whole other plane. And are sometimes the secret sauce to your magic.

The most moving scene for me was the last supper before Carrie left for Paris and they recant their relationships. The scene’s poignancy hit me because there all comes a time when friends realize that they sometimes have to move on from one another in order to move forward in life. It’s the scariest risk we can take, I think. To entrust everything in to one person as we leap away from a network of friends.

Sure, not everyone makes the leap and leaves for Paris, but the idea is the same. Letting go of friends. And knowing that it hurts. And knowing you’ll have to make the effort. But knowing that if you don’t take the risk, you’ll resent them and be angry at yourself for never trying.

Even though Carrie returned, the moment still marked a distinct change in everyone’s life. And the changes…those are the times we need our friends most to be the rocks and the constants – even though they need to change too.

The show appropriately ends with Carrie’s final internal dialogue, which rings true for all:

Later that day, I got to thinking about relationships.
There are those that open you up to something new and exotic.
Those that are old and familiar.
Those that bring up lots of questions.
Those that bring you somewhere unexpected.
Those that bring you far from where you started.
And those that bring you back.
But the most exciting, challenging and significant relationship of all is the one you have with yourself.
And if you find someone to love the you, you love…
Well, that’s just fabulous.

And what a fabulous way to end this.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tW3f8aGhvb4

Rocks in your shoe.

At 2:00 am this morning I woke up and thought about disappointments. How a boy hadn’t called, how I held on to bitterness, how sometimes you want an easy-peasy communique and it never comes. All the things that you become overly distracted by.

These disappointments, I thought, are like rocks in your shoes. You feel them immediately as soon as you do, the right thing to do is stop, address the problem and sling that rock out of your shoe.

Or if you’re like me…you sometimes think that the rock will work itself out and you can keep walking.

And that’s the issue. And that’s the problem.

Trying to pretend that you can walk with a rock in your shoe. It’s not possible. I don’t care if you’ve got Crocks on or not. These things, on most occasions, do not work themselves out on their own. You must stop, take the shoe off and find that fucking rock and throw it as if you’re delivering the opening pitch at the first game of the season.

Disappointments becomes the proverbial rocks in shoes. When you are faced with one, you tend to say, “Oh well” and attempt to move on. But you do need to deal with the aftermath and fallout.

The boy didn’t return my call. I sat in silence. Sad, angry, somewhat disappointed and shamed. Sad because I liked him. Angry because I didn’t expect to be blown off with such apathy. Disappointed because I think I was openly communicative about my interest as he was with me. Shamed because maybe I turned into a crazy person, which is oft the case when people start to disappear. The irony being that I, myself, tend to disappear. Then the realization of that mirror image being served up to me was also a disappointment. Because that image hadn’t changed in a while and it’s time I start busting my own chops to deliver upon the same expectations I lay out for another, right? Right.

That was a huge fucking rock. It was a blood diamond in my boot.

And I’ve come to see that being bitter is the state of walking around with gravel  glued to your feet. For this, take a seat on the stoop and pull off the boots (you may need a friend to help) and dump all the pain on the ground. Sift through it. It can sometimes be helpful to see where you’ve been and where you accumulated these pain points. I mean, if you’re in Nashville and you’ve got a seashell…you’ve been carrying more baggage with you in your travels than you’ve imagined.

And then it’s time to take a look at your shoes, so to speak. If they are letting every single little thing in, you’re living in quicksand. It’s time to find a pair of Wellies.

People throughout your life will disappoint. And you’ll disappoint yourself ad nauseum through the looking glass when all is said and done. Sure, choices seem impulsive and ‘living in the moment’ when off the cuff, but remember that if your’e not prepared to fully process and absorb the wisdom from the aftermath, you will because a beast of burdens.

But you have to find out what’s worth falling down about. With rocks in your shoes, you become myopic in focusing on the pain and instead of addressing the pain immediately, you pretend to ignore it and become blinded to the rest of the scene as it plays out around you, 360 degrees. The obsession with the pain overtakes the mind; you negate the purpose of your journey by fixating on the tiny prick.

Well, sometimes he or she can be a huge fucking prick. Again, don’t let this sidetrack your entire life’s journey.

Thankfully as I get older, I’ve been able to better index the toxicity of disappointments in my life.

Sometimes the haz mat team needs to be called in to clean up the meltdown of the core. Other times, a change in polish color solves everything.

I immediately cast the shoes off and give them a shake to make sure all the shit is out on the ground before me to look at so I’m able to see whether I’m walking on rocks, glass, pennies, spider exoskeletons or whatever else. You do this long enough, you can even learn how to walk barefoot.

But that’s another story for another time.

Ride it out.

Sometimes you’ve got to just ride it out. I’ve been thinking a lot about life and death and everything entailed in it. Searching for purpose, for meaning for what I want my life to be/mean/become/remember.

I think when we’re born, our souls drop into a body onto a surf board. Life is literally the practice of learning to paddle out to the waves and attempt to ride high, all the while crashing down and bottoming out over and over again. And we never stop the process of going to task and riding the wave.

With death, I choose to believe that this rental I’m in while decay and wither away but my essence will go back into the ether from which it came. A drop back in the ocean of spirit.

httpa://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qf1RAB1xW84

I don’t think I would have believed this years ago. But now – now I need something to believe in. I need my logic as much as I need my myth. I need the faith that finite is okay and it’s how life is meant to be.

Another wall I’ve hit is finding myself so completely resentful and bitter. It’s an ugly place for me to be that I must overcome but not try to cover in shame. I’m owning the feeling and the reactions and trying to discover what the meaning is for me to be in this place. And why I feel this way.

Old ghosts reappear everywhere these days. It seems I can’t seem to run and I have to make peace with the shit I pulled and the shit pulled on me. Forgiveness is a big, big spoon of medicine that I need to constantly take.

I’m just going to ride this feeling out. Not in shame, not in silence and not in hiding. I’m a little depressed. I’m alone and I don’t want to be. I want to be loved. I want to meet him. Wherever he may be. I’m ready. (Or maybe I’m not ready.)

 

Soapboxing.

This is just nothing but a bunch of rants:

_____

 

I find it tiresome when I hear people talk about progressiveness and all they want really at the core of who they are is traditionalism. It’s fine to think beyond the norm and the societal expectations and live beyond them as it applies to you, but I find it also shameful that some people seem to try so hard to be uniquely different that they lose sight of the fact that even by their mere existence, they already are uniquely different. And quit calling for change from other people. If you are living in a way that you want to live and no one is stopping you (or in reality – caring about what you’re doing with your life or the choices you make), then just shut up.

______

 

Whenever I’m on a plane, I’m inadvertently sitting by an old man who refuses to turn his phone off. Just shut it off. Whomever you’re talking to or texting isn’t that important, even if it’s your spouse. Unless you’re getting a call from God, turn off your phone when the flight attendants make the announcement to turn off your electronics. It’s just not that hard. Why must you act like an unruly teenager who has a serious problem with authority? Then, of course, as the flight attendants make their final pass through the cabin, one will stop and loudly address your idiocy and make a fool of you. At times they will even point you out to others as the main reason we aren’t taking off. Just shut your fucking phone off. Not just on airplane mode. OFF! It’s not that hard and then you can proceed to pass out and slouch into my personal space where I will hit and shove you throughout the flight, now with more intensity and actual hate because of how much of a fucktard you are.

______

 

And then there is train etiquette. I used to be polite and let people older than me sit down. That didn’t last long. Unless you’re pregnant or above the age of 70 and feeble, I will not give up my seat. If you did, that’s something between you and your maker. Then there are the people who are blaring music out of their headphones that at times entertain me because I enjoy the song, and other times entertain me because I know they’ll be going deaf before me. Then there are the people who aren’t wearing shoes. There are the homeless who are panhandling inside the train. Although the most clever panhandler I’ve witnessed was a man reciting poetry. Others just keep shuffling back and forth on the same car and asking for change. Hi – you’re on a train. Sit down and enjoy the air conditioning. But preferably sit by yourself somewhere. Then there are the people standing that want to affirm their personal space. Give up the ghost. If you’re on a rush hour train, you don’t have personal space. So shorten up your stance, mister. Your dick isn’t that big that you need that much space between your feet. And as for the people standing, you will get off the train when we stop. Don’t try to squeeze your way to the door before we’ve stopped because there’s NO PLACE TO GO. Just be patient. You’ll get off the train. And then there are the people who try to just walk up to the train as it is pulling into the station and who attempt to just get in front of all the other people who have been waiting. Nope. Me and my bag will completely move into your space and increase your level of discomfort by a marginal 50% or more. You don’t get to cut. You don’t get to avoid the suffering the rest of us do.

_____

 

People on Twitter. Stop. Just be yourself. Stop trying to flirt/fuck for followers. The only people on Twitter I’ve flirted with, I had intentions of following through with and did. But there are people who try to use Twitter like an erotic chat line. If that’s your game plan, stop giving it away for free. And don’t be coy. If you think we’re all idiotic to not think you’re name-dropping for the sake of publishing how popular YOU think YOU are, then I’m sorry the internet supports your mediocrity and lets you believe you are more special than you are.

_____

 

 

Gamey people.

Let’s be honest. I’m too damn old for the games that people play. And I’ll admit that from time to time, I have played many a games that were nothing but time wasters and a result from being utterly bored and non-committal.

And they probably could have hurt people had I kept them going indefinitely. Or hurt people in the time I engaged in them already.

I find that games are things to distract yourself with and never actually satiate your craving of wanting something real, true and meaningful.

httpa://www.youtube.com/watch?v=me7GYlaliRE

I’m no longer interested in:

  • Baiting emails that are just ‘checking in.’ There’s no discussion to be had. Scrounging up conversation is painful for everyone involved so just don’t. Even for the sake of trying to have sex. Or even worse – when the intention is just to be friendly after you’ve had sex.
  • Text messages after 10 pm that say, “What’s up?” Stop. We’re both better than that.
  • Conversations with people from the past who are looking to rekindle something. Let’s just all let it go.

I’ve come to realize that some people are meant to walk in and teach you one thing and then they must go.

Some overstay their welcome. Some try to morph and grow and change with you, and it doesn’t work. It’s best to just bow humbly, thank he or she for the experience, and start moving again. There’s something unnatural about the desire to keep every person in your life for the duration of it. It’s actually impossible. We have to let go.

That’s not to say that when you find someone utterly captivating, you don’t try your hardest to make it work. Because you do. Because when you experience that ‘click,’ you’ll fight tooth & nail to keep it in your life. But that’s a different story than what I’m touching upon right now.

I saw something today that said, essentially, that if you’re physically tired, sleep. If you’re emotionally tired, it’s time to wake up and move on.

Amen. I’ve been emotionally tired for a while. I’m tired of the people around. I’m tired of the people I’ve invited to be around. Slowly it’s dawned on me as well that life will only present to me what I’m ready for and what I invite in. I’m ready to invite in something whole. Someone who’s capable of getting me, pushing me and who ‘clicks.’

Part of my whole problem with gamey people is that I can be terribly cold. I realize this. I can come across as a total bitch.

But don’t confuse my equanimity for animosity or icy stoicism. When I say I don’t care, I truly mean I have no emotional response to give. I’ve learned how to not fake my way by overemoting and I’m not going back.

I understand that’s annoying to people who feed off of witnessing emotional squirming as a result of something they’ve said or done. It’s especially aggravating for people who want a lot of explosive emotions about everything. That’s not me. Or if anything, I gravitate toward the darkness. That seems evident, right? I’m just not programmed to be smiley and cheery. Therefore it shouldn’t be expected. But at times, I’m totally that person. It’s been rare but well-deserved.

So instead of being a bitch to you, gamey individuals, I’m just going to start calling you out on your gamey behavior. Or better yet, shutting it down. Blocking it out. I’m no longer interested. As the old song goes, if you’re going to come on, come on strong.

I’m tired of pussyfooting. If I want something, I’m going after it. I suggest you do the same. And if you find yourself vacillating over whether this ________ is the one you really, really want…then put _____________ down and move on with your life because you’re not ready to commit. You’re just not ready yet. So don’t kid yourself.

I say this with the awareness that I’ve had to look in the mirror and take this advice time and time again.

Lowering expectations.

This blog has been rewritten about eight times in the past five days and I must first apologize in that I have not been writing consistently.

Today was another scheduled therapy session and in true fashion, God presented me with a gem of discussion while I walked the six miles to get there. No, I don’t walk six miles to get there every time I go. But it was nice out, not terribly hot and I figured I’d take advantage of the opportunity to see a more scenic route.

httpa://youtu.be/8Ja5rhsCJ6U

Anyway, as I was walking there I was thinking about how I didn’t really have much to report back on or to fill him in on. For the most part, things have been going great. Work is great (and as I later discovered because I’m finally able to tap into my own strengths and what I LIKE doing as part of this job), I’m healthy, I’ve been drawing more, trying to write a lot, reading and of course dating.

Dating manifests itself in the truest form of my total lack of control over life. While I can take charge in most everything else and navigate with others toward an outcome mutually beneficial, with dating…I seems to be less inclined to hit the jackpot.

Once I got to the session and we touched upon the surprise of the day, I just expressed my total lack of care when it comes to dating. I find I’m getting more apathetic to the idea of actually finding true and long-lasting love. Maybe it’s not for me. Many people don’t find love in life. And if it’s not going to be, that’s okay. I’m pretty content with everything else.

But as my therapist pointed out, as he is bound to do, everyone WANTS true love and long-lasting love. Yes, I agreed. But sometimes we don’t get what we want.

Or maybe what we want does not come in the form we expect it to, and that’s part of my problem.

I’d say I’ve been in love a few times and they were all different, but the most powerful and debilitating love I find myself comparing people to. And not necessarily in who they are as they relate to that person at that time, but more about how I feel in relation to how I felt at the time.

I’m searching for that feeling that I felt then. And maybe that’s a bad gauge to go into a relationship with.

I don’t feel comparative, though. I’m realistic and self-aware enough to know that no two people are alike and that no two loves are alike. They will always be different and they will always flavor/color your future endeavors.

It’s not like I’m just hiding out. I go on dates. I probably attempt to go on more dates than I should. I’m probably chasing gamey men boys when I know better and know that with youth comes a proclivity for attention from the best option, not necessarily the self-awareness or readiness to settle into a relationship of honesty, substance and with the intention of growth.

Let’s be honest though, it’s not always about dating. Sometimes you just want company. Even if that means sex. And that’s fine – as long as it’s safe, mutual and smart. But I’ve always been the type to have a problem separating sex from emotions, so I usually don’t find myself in many moments of full on physical engagement only. Because if this blog didn’t prove it to you, my brain and feelings don’t know when to be quiet.

I don’t mind going on dates. I kind of like it. It’s interesting to me. However, as therapy revealed, I probably come across as intimidating and conduct my dates like an interview, asking questions to drive conversation in an attempt to avoid any awkwardness or lulls (or lack of control).

I’m picky. About anybody I let in my life. I’m picky with friends, much less people I allow myself to love. I can’t do the mass amount of acquaintances because I’m used to being alone and alone time for me is time to recharge. But that can be hard for some people to recognize and accept.

I know I have to keep my expectations in check and that I cannot compare old love and new love and the packages it comes in, or the situations that lead up to it.

It’s also an interesting thing to ask if and when we’re ever done serving a purpose in someone else’s life? And if we are – do people allow you to move on and do you allow them?

I think I’m moving on and I find that I no longer have purpose for the past. It’s taught me a lot (and continues to) and I use the lessons each day, but I’m not interested in going back to it or trying to recreate it.

I look forward to each day and I find I’m more content in the adventure and possibility. Again, I’m not looking for someone to complete my life, I’m looking for someone who can be the icing on the cake.

Sidewalk jerks.

I have a problem with people and their ignorance of proper sidewalk decorum. There are several types of offenders that really burn my biscuits when I’m trying to walk down the street and find my simple desire thwarted by sheer idiocy or cultural disconnect. I find myself screaming under my breath and wishing a swift moment of justice for these people, like tripping on shoelaces, uneven brick or texting and walking right into a pole. So without further ado, the people I loathe:

Continue reading Sidewalk jerks.

Hodgepodge.

I’m reading The Accidental Creative: How to be brilliant at a moment’s notice by Todd Henry for our work book club. There’s a passage that totally rang true and harkened back to my post the other day about my lone wolf tendencies.

In the chapter about relationship building, Henry talks about balancing the multiple personalities we have because of our multi-tasking between coworkers, projects, etc. He states that a number of creatively gifted people are more apt to be introverted.

“Introversion doesn’t mean that we don’t like being around people; it simply means that we derive our energy from being alone rather than from being around others.”

So there you have it. I’m not so weird after all! It’s not just me. It’s all of us creatively gifted people. I mean, I was even in GIFTED classes in middle school.  All these things are adding up to prove that perhaps my isolationism isn’t so bad. But left unchecked for too long, it does become disruptive because it leads to tunnel vision.

Henry goes on to state that we’re bred for interaction and that the only way to discover ourselves is by being around other people. We need each other in order thrive and survive in the world.

I’ll try and remember that the next time someone shoves behind me on an already packed train. Or when someone stops right at the top or bottom of an escalator as though they’ve completely lost the will to move.

And in other news, I’ve totally been in a Chaka Khan phase right now and just going through her catalog. Her ’81 song “Fate” is hot. And you may recognize the sample:

httpa://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFQdCRQd3yg

Here’s another thing I’m digging so hard. A foodie blog called TheKitchn has AMAZING recipes for any occasion and there are so many amazing things that I’ve bookmarked and plan to make, including this wedge salad: