A work in progress until I leave this earth.
I believe love is the most wonderful thing in this world.
With love comes life’s greatest joys and deepest tragedies.
But maybe never able to find it.
This is just like Eat, Pray, Love, with the exception that it’s absolutely nothing like that. Do I need to include a NSFW disclosure? Done. So my ex had a porn addiction. Collection. Whatever. Let me preface this by saying I … Continue reading
About a month ago she met me at work. She waited so that we could go to dinner afterwards.
We didn’t do anything fancy. Just a simple evening with great conversation.
That was my favorite thing about her. I could talk with her for hours on end and never tire of her voice.
After dinner, we went back to my office to pick up her car. We took my normal route home from work.
About half way to my office, we came to an intersection at Snowy Hollow Road and Route 169. I stopped at the sign and jumped out of my car. I ran back to her car. She looked very concerned and asked me, “What’s wrong?”
I replied “Absolutely nothing. Everything is perfect.” Then I kissed her.
I kissed her like it was the last thing I would ever do.
She looked surprised. Floored is a better description.
Later that evening, she told me that was the sweetest, most romantic thing any man had ever done for her.
She told me how much she loved me and asked me to make love to her.
How do you go from that moment- one month ago- to this, being apart, without any explanation?
I would do anything to see that look in her eyes again.
To see how much she loved me. I would die for that feeling again.
Just one more time.
* * *
How do you go from feeling like this person is your entire world, to….. nothing?
[This was written by a friend. I will add his name, only with his permission.]
I discovered a new blog today called One Thousand Single Days. A young woman, now divorced with two young sons, who has committed to spending the next 1,000 days to being single.
An excerpt from her blog:
“One thousand days of being single… No men, no dating, no flirting, no kisses, no romantic love, no valentines day, nothing.I intend to use this time to address some of the issues I have… I am very stubborn… I have shockingly low self esteem, I get jealous, I can get really angry….I want to learn to be whole.”
Her words touched me. How well I could relate.
My blog is not nearly as well-laid out as hers is. And I barely have any followers. But those things do not matter to me.
My main focus is picking up the pieces of my broken life. And not just simply putting them back together again.
But creating a new picture.
I do not want to go back to the insecure little girl who grew up feeling ugly and different and misunderstood.
I want to create something new. A new life that fits the new me: the me who is alone again, who lost her job. The me who thought she’d found the love of her life, who has now since disappeared.
The me who has two beautiful, sweet little girls who make me realize that each day is a gift, and should never be taken for granted.
I do not have the luxury of being a 27 year old woman who can devote 1,000 days to being single.
Instead I want time and chance, or serendipity, to choose my fate for me.
Serendipity: A “happy accident” or “pleasant surprise”; specifically, the accident of finding something good or useful while not specifically searching for it.
There are no guarantees of tomorrow. Even those who have found love today, are not promised a forever.
The only thing we have control of, is how we view each opportunity presented to us. The man who says he will end up alone, is right. He will end up alone.
The woman who says she will find love again, is right. She will find love again.
The person who sees beauty in the ordinary, will also see the possibility of the future.
Things happen for a reason. That is something I will always believe.
Each experience leads us to a better understanding of ourselves, and presents a new opportunity for tomorrow.
You can’t fast forward to the next chapter of your life without first experiencing the now.
Puzzles are intricate and challenging. But piece by piece a beautiful picture begins to unfold.
It’s impossible to make some pieces fit. So toss them aside and make room for those that will. Something better.
Believe that all things- good and bad- happen for a reason.
* * *
A scene from Serendipity: a man and woman meet. Strangers, both engaged to marry others, who are immediately attracted to one another.
The woman, Sara, decides that if they were meant to be, destiny will bring them together again. Ether now or in the future. They know only a few pieces of information about each other, not including the other’s last name.
They scrawl their full names and telephone numbers on a $5 bill and a used book. Sara believes that if they are destined to be together, one of them will find either the book or five dollar bill by happenstance. But only IF they are meant to be together. Without any contact information, they part ways.
* * *
Last spring, my boyfriend planned a trip for us to Colorado. He put it on his credit card. A week later, I went to the bank and withdrew five one hundred dollar bills.
I was happy in love. I recall the five crisp $100 bills. As I sat at my desk one afternoon, I took a black Sharpie and in perfect handwriting I wrote “You” on one, “are” on another, “so” on the third, and finally “SEXY” on the fourth. On the fifth, I wrote his name, “Adam.” I embellished each one with red hearts. Silly, but sweet.
The next day, I gave him the five bills. He smiled and kissed me.
Right before our trip, I discovered that he was still on a dating website. I was devastated.
I told him I could no longer go on the trip with him and one morning before work, I stopped by his house. Without a word, he handed the five $100 bills back to me.
I was upset. Distressed. Beyond hurt.
Later that week, my daughters and I stopped at a Burger King drive-thru.
I reached into my purse and pulled out the folded $100 bills. I hesitated for a moment. Then without a second thought, I handed the teenage boy at the window the one marked “sexy.” It was emblazoned with big red hearts. My daughters, who rarely miss a trick, noticed it and started questioning me.
A minute later, the boy handed me back my change. We drove home.
One by one, I spent all of the $100 bills, saving the one marked “Adam” for last.
As I type, those five $100 bills are all floating around now.
* * *
I’m going to the bank. Maybe today.
I’m going to withdraw $100. Maybe three $20 bills, some tens and fives. Who knows? On a select few, I am going to write…. something. I’m not sure what yet.
Maybe some statement or word that perhaps trigger a memory that only he would know the meaning of.
Then I am going to spend them. All of them.
Not right away, but over the next few weeks or so. At the grocery store. At the mall… I’m not going to plan where. Just where ever.
Will he ever come across one of them again?
When he stops at Best Buy to pick up a new cell phone charger, will the clerk hand him one?
One night when he’s hungry and decides to stop at Taco Bell after work, will he receive one back in his change?
Or maybe some night, when he takes a new girl out on a date, he’ll pay for their drinks. He’ll order a gin and tonic. Or maybe a beer.
No, he’ll definitely want to impress her, so he will order the gin. Or perhaps Scotch on the rocks.
The bartender will hand him his change back. He’ll mindlessly shove the bills into his pocket and go back to his date.
She is pretty. She has a nice smile. At that moment, she is all he will see.
The next day he’ll go about his day. Laundry day will come. Or maybe he’ll decide to wear those same jeans again.
He’ll pull them on. Later, he’ll reach into his pocket. And then. He will see it. On a five dollar bill. Or maybe on a ten.
My handwriting. My words. He’ll see me.
And he will……?
What? I don’t know. Maybe nothing. Or maybe… something.
Corny, I know. But more like close to impossible.
Or maybe not so impossible.
Whatever happens after that…. I choose to let fate decide.
Serendipity or not.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. The story of a couple who meet, fall in love and break up.
Their break up is so painful they both decide to undergo a procedure that erases all memory of their relationship.
After their memories are erased they become strangers and go their separate ways.
But they meet a second time and are instantly attracted to each other, as if meeting for the first time.
The movie ends there, suggesting they fall in love all over again, despite their past.
The whole thing- falling in love, meeting a second time and being given a second chance- is appealing on many levels.
Most people have one person they wish they could have a second chance with.
A past relationship that was electric and exciting and passionate that you wish you could do it all over again. Even if there was some bad mixed in with all the good.
No relationship is ever perfect and every couple encounters problems and misunderstandings. People change, circumstances change and feelings can change, too.
And a history that took months and years to build up, can all fall apart as easily as a sand castle being washed away by the tide.
You might try and save it. You grab your bucket and add more sand.
And things are good again. Maybe not as perfect as before but there’s still a lot of good left so you both hold on.
But the issues and the tide will reappear again. And unless both people are trying to fix it, you realize you can’t do it alone.
The whole situation can seem impossible and overwhelming. And sometimes it’s easier to walk away when you feel hurt, even if you love someone.
But after some time has passed, you start to miss the other person and maybe even wish you had a second chance.
But what if all your bad memories- every fight, every lie, every hurtful word ever spoken – were all erased.
What if you met again as strangers without a past.
Maybe this time you would both be different.
Maybe if enough time had passed and if your experiences had changed, maybe you’d both be better.
Maybe. Or maybe erasing the past wouldn’t make any difference at all.
Don’t mistakes teach us what not to do next time and how to be better?
How would we know what to do differently if there were no past to learn from?
Maybe a second chance with someone wouldn’t be wonderful at all.
To go through the hurt and pain of breaking up all over again? No one would ever choose that.
And what if the other person walked away without a fight. Or they treated you badly the first time?
If they really loved you, wouldn’t they have tried harder and treated you better? Would it be any different the second time?
It takes mutual love and respect and the effort from two people, to build the relationship and to protect the sand castle.
These are all just words and words don’t really mean anything unless the person who they are meant for actually reads them.
And even if they read them, there are no magic words that can change the past and make things work. Not even “I love you,” not even “I’m sorry,” and not even “I really wish we could start over again.”
Love isn’t always enough and some things were just not meant to be.
What does matter is finding someone who won’t give up on you. Even after you’ve messed up.
Someone who is as passionate about you as you are about them.
Otherwise, all you end up with is a pile of useless fucking sand.
“If you love something, let it go.
If you don’t love something, definitely let it go. Basically, just drop everything, who cares.” – B.J. Novak
I did not write this.
A friend sent this to me recently. It touched me and I wanted to share.
“I was a drunken whore master.”
These were Todd’s exact words to me, describing himself. [This is a post about him, a guy I’ve known for years, who repeatedly tried to sleep with me and repeatedly failed.]
I was impressed with his honesty. It also made me laugh. It was funny.
And also sad.
But there are thousands of Todd’s. They are everywhere.
Guys who would fuck any girl who is willing to put out.
And according to Todd, most girls are easy prey. All he’d have to do was buy them a few drinks and tell them they were pretty.
Two shots later and BOOM. She’s naked in your bed.
“So easy”, he’d say.
But empty. Sad. Pathetic.
Todd slept with 2, 3, sometimes even 4 girls, in a single week. Leaving a trail of broken hearts and some very confused and upset women, along the way.
He didn’t care. He didn’t want any girl. He just wanted to get laid. He talked about it as casually as discussing the weather.
Then one day, after a bad day at work, he stopped at a bar. He’d stopped there a 100 times before. He had seen her there a few times.
Sometimes they’d even make small talk. That particular night, the bar was empty. He moved a seat closer.
He bought her a drink.
She smiled and thanked him. One hour turned into two… Two drinks turned into… many.
He couldn’t remember the details. “All I remember is her….”
That night, Todd took her back to his apartment. On the way, he stopped at a liquor store. He ran inside and minutes later, returned with an expensive bottle of red wine.
“I don’t care for red,” she said.
“Should I run in and get you a bottle of white?” he asked.
He aimed to please. She politely declined. They left.
Todd had all the things you would imagine a Player to have: a brand new loaded BMW, a great apartment, an amazing job. And he was very attractive.
Short, dark hair. Perfectly dressed. Expensive jeans. A sexy, striped button down shirt. His eyes were dark. Smoldering.
He stared at her. She knew exactly what he was thinking.
He popped open the bottle of wine.
She was nervous. She guzzled it to calm her nerves.
They made small talk. He moved closer. She darted away. She needed more wine.
She looked in his refrigerator. It was overflowing with beer and little else.
More wine. Flirting. Kissing…
Two hours later, they were naked in his bed. A huge beautiful, antique-looking wooden mirror leaned up against his wall. An odd piece for a Player to have. It showed he had dimension. Some class. An appreciation for beautiful pieces of old furniture.
She liked it.
She grabbed her black dress and heels, got dressed and left. She needed to go home.
He stood in the doorway, barely clothed and watched her walk to her car. He missed her before she had even left.
Todd stopped seeing other women. All he could think about was her.
She wasn’t the most beautiful girl. But she was quite striking. Soft blonde hair that grazed her shoulders. Pretty green eyes.
Her body bore the faint scars of having children. It was not perfect. He didn’t care.
He thought she was beautiful.
And she was smart, funny, cute.
He couldn’t stop thinking about her. He wanted to see her again. He needed to see her again.
He couldn’t wait. He texted her and emailed her. Sent an extravagant bouquet of calla lilies and white roses to her at work.
What the fuck had happened to him?
He didn’t even recognize himself.
Soon they were seeing each other frequently. The sex was amazing. Electric.
But it was more than that.
He was falling in love with her. And she felt the same.
Todd had never been the romantic type. But one night he told her: “I care for you so much, it scares me. I want you to know how much I love you.”
She was touched. “You are amazing, Todd.”
He replied, “No I am NOT amazing. When I look at you, all these words just come pouring out of me. I’m not amazing. I’m just being genuine. This is what you do to me. This is how you make me feel.”
If they are lucky, even the most promiscuous man (or woman), will meet a person who will change them.
Turn their world upside-fucking-down.
The trick is finding a person who will reciprocate that all-consuming love.
A person who earns it. Respects and protects it.
Makes you feel like anything is possible.
If you find that… hold onto it.
Never let it go.
[Update: A few months later, this girl dumped Todd and completely broke his heart. Perhaps proving that karma does in fact exist. I don’t know. It’s not for me to say.]
He was a decent husband. He was successful. He was a good provider.
Each time I came home with a pitiful new stray animal, be begrudgingly accepted it into our home.
But he was too busy with work and hating his job to appreciate the beautiful home I had made for us.
He chose working overtime over spending time with our 2 beautiful daughters.
After Hurricane Katrina, my dear friend Rose and I packed a tent and drove her Avalanche to New Orleans to volunteer. The HSUS had turned an equestrian center outside of the city into the largest animal rescue facility to date. We set up our tent outside the humongous FEMA tent. It reminded me of a giant circus tent. We woke each day at 5:30am, and by 8am, we were exploring the barren streets of New Orleans most devastated neighborhoods. Dumping giant bags of cat and dog food, leaving water and occasionally rescuing a stray dog or cat, when we were lucky.
Rose and I befriended two FEMA firefighters. Two men: one was married, one was not.
Ryan, the single one was adorable. A big friendly smile. And the fact that he was there to save animals was attractive to me, a fellow animal lover.
Ryan and I hit it off immediately. I told him about my 2 girls and husband back home. I even showed him the pictures of our happy little family.
He talked to me. He listened. He was interested in me. Something that was lacking in my marriage.
Each day, Rose and I spent every daylight hour searching the streets of New Orleans. We dumped food. Left water. Witnessed the devastation. Found dead animals. Found starving animals. We cried. And sometimes we would laugh at ourselves. And then we would cry even more. It was heartbreaking.
Each evening we would find our 2 new firefighter friends and drink beer. Compare stories. Feel sad. Drink more beer. And try to forget.
That week, Ryan and I became close. We bonded over our sadness. It was easy to be attracted to someone who was so attentive.
I had been feeling so unloved, so neglected at home for so long. The attention was nice. And he made it very clear that he wanted me.
I was married. Unhappily married. But still married. Rose was put off.
She was happily married. And she knew how unhappy I was.
She was sympathetic, but slightly judgmental.
I kissed Ryan that week. And even though we had many opportunities to, I never took it any farther than that. But technically, I cheated on my husband. In my eyes, even just kissing was cheating.
I felt like a horrible human being.
I’m not proud of what I did, but no one is perfect. Certainly not me.
Ten days later, my husband was waiting for me at the airport when I returned home. He was beaming with excitement. He had missed me. A lot. It showed.
I had not missed him.
It was not that I wanted to leave him for Ryan. In fact I wasn’t even sure if I was interested in Ryan at all. It was the fact that time away had made me realize I needed more.
I deserved more.
I was unhappy.
I desperately wanted to be happy again.
He could see from my face that things had changed between us. That week, I asked him for a divorce.
He fell apart.
He cried and begged for another chance.
I agreed and we saw yet another marriage counselor.
The fact is, we had gone to four different counselors over the years. We had even attended a Marriage Encounter weekend. The ME weekend was actually fun.
He and I bonded that weekend. It breathed a new life into our marriage. But that was only a temporary fix. Two weeks later, things were back to normal again. And normal for us meant he was never around. And when he was, he was miserable. And that made me miserable.
[2.5 years earlier] We moved into our new home that Christmas. The house was completely empty. The heat was not working. It was cold and empty. But it was ours. We were happy. A new home. A new fresh start for us. A new chance to make things work.
I remember sitting in our living room a few weeks later. On our shabby old couch. The house was still bare. We had not purchased any new furniture yet.
He walked in the door from work. More complaints. He hated his job. It seemed that was all he ever wanted to talk about.
I asked him to sit down. I told him I was unhappy. I asked him for a divorce. He begged me to try. Again.
I agreed. Again.
We found yet another counselor. She suggested a trip. Maybe spending time together alone would help us?
We booked a hotel and drove to Florida. Two days before we left, 911 occurred. We thought about cancelling our trip but we decided to go anyway. The Disney parks were barren that week. The entire country was mourning the devastating losses of 911. We tried to enjoy ourselves. We used wine to numb the pain.
We had dinner al fresco on Disney’s boardwalk one evening. It was a beautiful night. We laughed. We had wine. I felt happy.
A fortune teller had a small kiosk set up along the water. After dinner, he suggested I have a reading done. He knew my fascination with that sort of thing. She read my palm. She shuffled her Tarot cards. I giggled. It was the wine.
But the one thing I vividly recall her saying to me was: “You will have a daughter that is exactly like you.”
He and I had not had sex in ages. Sex had been the last thing on my mind in all those unhappy years.
After strolling along the moonlit boardwalk and more wine, we had sex that evening in our hotel room.
One month later, the pregnancy test came back positive. I was shocked. How could I be pregnant?
We only had sex once. One time in over a year. Maybe TWO YEARS? It had been so long, I had lost track.
It must be a sign. We were ecstatic to have a child.
We decided we would stay together and try to work things out. [end of flashback]
Things never did change. And 6 months after I returned from volunteering for Hurricane Katrina, we filed for divorced.
Looking back I know I gave him everything I could. I did everything in my power to make it work.
Counselors. The Marriage Encounter weekend. More counseling. More chances. More time…. More tries.
You get to a point when trying is all there is left.
At one time I adored him. But over the years, adoration turned into resentment.
I resented him for working so much. I resented his refusal to communicate. All he ever did was complain about work.
I resented him for not appreciating the beautiful family and home we had created.
But yet, I still tried and tried and tried again.
The saddest part is that I know he still loved me. But he stopped trying.
When I finally decided to walk away for good, I knew in my heart I had done everything in my power to make it work.
I also knew I no longer loved him. He stopped trying. He had destroyed the love I once had for him.
And when there is no love left, that’s when you know it’s time to gracefully walk away.
The night before my girls headed to the beach with their Dad, my 8yo got into trouble.
We were discussing my exBF and she used a series of very descriptive curse words to describe him. I will not say exactly what.
But imagine the worst.
I was not happy.
Her punishment was to copy an excerpt from the James Mollison’s book, “Where Children Sleep.”
For those who are unfamiliar with this book, it is worth Googling. [See link, below.]
She was not happy with this punishment, but she went off to write anyway.
Before I went to bed, I found this card [photo’s below] neatly folded on my pillow, written in her hand.
These are her exact words, verbatim. Keep in mind she is only eight years old.
The cover: “To: The One and Only Mommy.”
I am so sorry for saying that word…. I understand that D. is a good person and that I got a little worked up. He hurt you and that is why I get mad. I know that sometimes I can say things that are not good and that’s what makes me mad, too. I can get mad over the littlest things sometimes. I am probably the luckiest girl to have so many chances in my life. Maybe it’s because I’m spoiled. But if it is than you know what? I am sorry for being that way. It can also be because I have the best Mommy in the world.
But whatever the reason, or explanation, I am sorry and I want one more chance. It now might be my 1 millionth chance, but I am so sorry. I promise that I will keep my feelings to myself.
Please, one more chance. I will love it.
It’s hard to believe she is only eight years old. And I’ll make sure she never keeps her feelings to herself ever again.
Here is the link to Mr. Mollison’s book: http://www.jamesmollison.com/wherechildrensleep.php
Fresh out of college, with my biology and education degree, I got my first real job: 7th grade science teacher. I was ECSTATIC.
Not just any job, but an actual job in my field. Little did I know how much that year would change my life.
I had 6 classes, each class separated by ability: in other words, a school’s practice of separating students into different classes, based on their academic ranking. [Academic ability grouping, as it’s called.]
Tony was in the highest group [the ‘smart’ group]. A class clown, wise ass, popular, charming, trouble maker– and he hated me. I can’t recall any specific incidences. But I do recall giving him after school detention. Frequently.
I got engaged that spring and at the end of the school year, I moved to DC.
On the last day of school, I vividly recall sitting in my empty classroom and crying. It had been a great year. I had become close to many students, most of who were in Tony’s group. I would miss them all. Notably, Tony’s group.
Years passed and one of my students invited me to their high school graduation. It was a 9 hour drive but I very much wanted to check up on my “kids.”
So I went. I was amazed at how they’d grown. I saw Tony after the graduation ceremony. He and several other boys apologized to me for their disrespectful behavior that 7th grade year. It made me feel good knowing they were regretful. My kids had grown up.
More years passed. I joined Facebook and within the first year, I had tracked down many of my former students, including Tony. We loosely kept in touch via FB status updates. Tony’s FB page was filled with pictures of he and his buddies partying and drinking, acting… well, their age.
More time passed…
I caught up with Tony again recently. We found each other again online. He told me how he had met a beautiful woman. He sounded different. Serious. Mature. Afraid to lose this gem he had been so lucky to find.
We briefly updated each other on our lives. I told of him of my recent breakup, and he told me about her. She was divorced, had children. His days of wild parties and drinking were now behind him. I was amazed at the transformation, clearly brought about by this woman. He told me he was afraid of failing her. “I am totally happy with her,” he wrote. “And I hope I can make her as happy I am. She is a game changer.”
I was amazed at his articulation of his feeling for her. His adoration of this woman. In a world of promiscuity, cheating and adultery, here this young man of only 29 had discovered his forever love it had seemed. He was aware of what he had found in her, and was afraid to lose her.
When I asked him what made her a game changer, he replied, “She is special in far too many ways for me to even begin to list. She makes me feel great, every single day, every time I am with her, even when I receive a text from her. She is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.”
That was it, it seemed. It’s not the most perfect or the hottest person you fall in love with. It’s the person whose inner beauty transforms you. The person that makes you feel the most beautiful inside, who brings out the best in you.
And that is what changes everything.