Absence Heard, Presence Felt

Today’s blog post is actually an open letter to him. Yes, another one…the news in that corner of the world is just depressing at this point and I have no idea what to do .In fact, there is nothing I can do and frankly, I should not want to be doing anything for him. I feel I should be gloating and feeling all vindicated and validated but I don’t because this is just…SAD. See, I KNEW things would not work out between him and BTH (hell, everyone who was privy to this knew) but the way this is playing out is beyond anything I could ever imagine. It was supposed to be a quick snatching of the wallet, maybe she would have an affair and he would be heartbroken the same way I was. But this….I do not think the Roman Empire fell so hard and so quickly. To call the man foolish would be a compliment and while I want to shake him and talk to him, I cannot. And it feels as if the absence of the friendship we shared is almost audible, like a pin falling on a floor in a silent room and  call me just as foolish but I swear there are times I feel his presence asking for help. But now is not the time for that and unsure if that time will ever come to fruition, so I say my words to you, my readers.


Once again, I find myself writing you a letter. Honestly, I thought I would be past the writing you a letter stage and even further away from actually wanting to send it. The only things holding me back from doing so are my self-respect, my incredibly low levels for the bullshit storm that will follow and the fact that even now, after all we both have been through…you still won’t get it.

This is not about me and you…not anymore. We are done and the pieces cannot be picked up again. Not a point of no return…more of a no point in a return. It is easy to blame it all on you: your lies, your disrespect, giving out my personal information, the leading me on, the mistreatments, your marriage. But it is also my fault both before and after. I said horrible, horrible things to you and I know you think I am an evil bitch for doing so, but again….you don’t get it. I am not an angry/hurtful person by nature but when I am hurt, attacked, wounded or provoked for no reason…I retaliate. And I want you to hurt ten times more than I do. Even after all the name calling and cursing, I showed myself to be too accommodating once again when I tried to help you and advise you when you said you were going to marry her. However, this is the real reason we will never again pick up the pieces: I have learned lessons from what you did and I have changed. Not completely but enough to know that you destroyed the fragile trust I had in you and while getting over you is one of the hardest things I have ever had to do, re-building trust in you and with you will be even harder. I am tired of hard. I know I no longer respect you as a man or a person and not because you left me, but because of who you became with her and because of her. I know I can no longer return to what it was and if you offer me anything at all, that is what it will be. Probably worse because you will be all broken down from what BTH is putting you through and I am no longer fixing people up for others to reap benefits.

Yes, I made investments in you that you never appreciated, acknowledged or even recognized. And I did it because I not only loved you, I LIKED you, and really, I think liking someone is more important than loving them. I definitely put up with more bullshit from a person I like and consider a friend versus someone I love…my love has limits, but my like doesn’t, at least when it came to you. And why I use the past tense I don’t know as it is my liking for you that has me writing this letter. Because I know…all you are putting out there and some of what you aren’t…I know.

Here’s the rub…I don’t want to know about the financial difficulties, the lack of wardrobe, the fact that you still remember me and the crazy, wonderful times. I do not want to hear about the erratic mood swings ranging from anger to depression, but because I like you and want you to be happy and  I am nosier than hell…I do know. Liking you is proving to still be a detriment…when we were together, it allowed you to treat me any old kind of way because when I did capture your attention, I was over the moon and now that I am moving on and re-building a life that does not include you in an active capacity, it slows me down. Granted, I have made significant progress but I am nowhere near where I could or would be if I did not like you. Of course, my nosiness plays a part also…how easy could it be to simply change the subject or stop it before it starts? But you are proving to be such a spectacular train wreck, who knows what the news will be? And I don’t want miss a minute of this soap opera.

I don’t want you to come back this way…okay, that is a partial lie because if you ever took action and did more than look this way, I would be able to convince myself that we could make it work this time around because you would see I was right all along and had nothing but your happiness and best interest at heart, but if you only stay on the outside reaching your hand out, I am not reaching back. I have done too much reaching only to be rejected. We both know what was done…the blows to my confidence and ego, the damage inflicted on my already fragile issues…the horrible words and wishes flung at you… and I will never forget the hater bitch comment although I have forgiven it. What I wrestle(d) with is the “happier than I have been in my life” comment when I was so broken and alone; I wrestle(d) with the total rejection of me and the silences I was met with when all I wanted to know was what she had that I didn’t. What made her a good woman and why I wasn’t. Why I was never good enough or worthy enough of you and your attention on a constant basis.

At this point, I may not have answered the questions but I have made peace with the situation and have found happiness.. with life and with myself. I no longer wake up with dread and anxiety wondering if today will be a good day for you, will you accept or reject me today or is today the day you end it yet again. Now, there is no hurtfulness disguised as honesty and the only issues I carry around and work on are my own. I am working on compartmentalizing what I still feel for you so I can make more progress and find that someone who will find me worthy, who can appreciate the good woman I am and who will offer consistency and stability while proving themselves worthy of the efforts it will take me to fully and freely allow them into my life for the long term. Dating is a crapshoot but I get complimented, dinners and pampering which are always good things. My life is not perfect and not what I thought it would be , but I am at peace. Your actions have put me on a path where I know myself better and am learning everyday what I want from a man and more importantly, what I am no longer tolerating from one.

So what I want you to do with what is happening is to find your happiness which seems to be so elusive …if you are in love with her and this is what you want despite what you are showing and telling to us all (and for the love of Pete….keep the marriage at home. Whatever is happening, no one needs to know anything else except you and BTH)…then put your foot down and be the man in the relationship. You can be whoever or whatever you want inside the house, but outside the house at least, demand the respect you deserve as her husband and the breadwinner. And if you are not happy, grab your balls and get out. Every day is a new beginning and re-building is always possible if you really want it. Life is too short to let pride stand in your way or to still not know what you want at this stage of it.

I want you to be satisfied with you and your choices and to not feel the need to reach out….and if you are reaching out, to not reject the help that someone may still wish to offer you. Stop the lying…unsure if it is to yourself or to others but stop it. Presenting one story to the world at large and telling me another one is not doing you any favors. IF you are happy, do not be afraid to show it and if you aren’t…telling me differently makes you a liar and a stupid one.  Keep your business to yourself…it is not helping you or others to know the dirty laundry. Finally, take action….you made choices so deal with them. Again, it makes no difference if you stay or go…just be able to live with your choices without drawing everyone into the drama.

You know, this letter was going to be filled with advice and suggestions but I already gave you that in previous letters never sent. Besides, you are not ready to accept help in any form from me; honestly I will probably be the last person you will accept help from and that both amuses and saddens me. Is your pride that stubborn that I will always be the bitter, jilted ex or are you too ashamed to face me because I know I am not the only one who remembers how it all went down? Is it that you think I will suddenly no longer have your best interests at heart and have my own agenda to exact revenge? Dude, you are crippled financially (really, you are DOA financially) and emotionally and your physical is not far behind. Work is hanging by a thread and while it is all presumptions about your home and home life, willing to wager the speculations are not far from the mark. There is nothing I can do to you that would be worse than what you are doing to yourself…truly, you are proving to be your own worst enemy and I am still bewildered that THIS is what you chose. But after being thrust into black hole of heartbreak by someone who promised never to hurt me and I thought would always be a part of my life in some capacity…I know how hard it is to give up the ghost, to move on whether you want to or not because it is in your own best interest. I know it is easier to admit mistakes and make it through to the other side if there is someone in your corner. Liking someone makes you that person who is there when no one else is and the one who gives a damn when absolutely no one else does. And this is the power of like: despite what others do to you… if you like them, you will offer to be that person regardless how foolish it makes you look.

Please, please, please…just take care of yourself and remember…somewhere inside of me, I am still that same crazy, wonderful girl who was not only in love with you but still likes you. I just don’t know how much longer she will be around.


Soooo Jealous

I am totally and completely discontent. That is the only way to describe it. I am getting slightly impatient and tired of waiting for the conclusion of this chapter so I can begin a new one. Nothing is going my way any longer: no assignments from the temp agencies, the job searches are not even yielding anything worth submitting a resume over AND the arrangements are in a slump. A serious slump….not even a response to my latest ad, which really may be a little too creative and intelligent for men, online or not. Two weeks I have been without extra income and it is slowly dawning on me that I am poor, at least financially and I am not sure I can handle that. Then to top it all off, the strangest, weirdest and saddest person EVER is bursting out with an actual relationship….not that I do not believe that there is not someone for everyone and Lord knows, the person whom I am speaking of has been waiting  for someone since I was dating Married Man…it still stings. I mean, I am here all wonderful and this person is not cute, has poor hygiene (their teeth has moss and their breath is foul) and their personality leaves LOTS to be desired. Oh, did I mention they were cheap? Yet, they are in a relationship. Just.Great.

And here I am, overlooked and unappreciated, watching way too much home shopping (I know all the Jewelry TV hosts by name) and pissed that I cannot follow their motto: “Buy it today and wear it forever.” I spend so much time napping when I do get out of the bed, the mattress is still glued to my ass. Before you all start thinking this is a pity party of the first order, let me shift gears….I need motivation and inspiration. I have a saying when I admire someone: “I want to be just like you when I grow up” and the women below inspire and motivate me in ways I cannot explain.  Without sounding all melodramatic,  they are my heroines.  It is more than wanting what they have…it is wanting what they possess to achieve what they have. When I talk to them or read them, they always seem to be growing, doing, learning from mistakes…while me…I am a cross between being and existing. Not sure what the difference is between those two are, but I do know they both pretty much require me to be alive and breathing which is all I seem capable of doing lately, and it is time for me to start doing more. Without further ado, here are the women I am soooo jealous of (in the best way possible):

Artsy Craftsy: Hands down, my favorite Panel person. She is just so sweet, laid back and whether she realizes it or not, she is the one with all the answers when it comes to getting through the loss of the one great love. She gets it that I still love him and a piece of me is still in love with him and that is really is okay. She gets it that I want him to be happy with his choices but I simply cannot be happy for him. She gets it that dating is hard and it is probably harder now for two reasons: the first is we are in an age where the expectation is for no commitment and the obligation is for physical play. Dating is reduced to a drink and a one night stand. Ongoing means the dude found your email address or phone number 3 months later and is wondering if you are available. The second reason is my age…not that I am old, but at this stage of the game I am looking at divorced or widowed men (totally different categories from “single”), men with children and the fact of the matter is baggage increases with age, not decreases. Single men my age are even more jaded and bitter than me and have a laundry list of requirements longer than my legs. But Artsy Craftsy knows that you can still keep the past in the past even when it is popping up in your face on a steady basis; she knows that it is no longer about trying to keep that person you feel you cannot live without in your life…it is about finding the person you can live with. And she holds onto hope and faith that there are still a few princes left among the frogs.

Larissa: I do not know her except via her blog and I am here to tell you: this girl’s writings are CRAZY amazing!!! When I read her, I do not feel so alone or unique. She makes me realize that I am not the only one left who still believes in the fairytale yet can find no one willing to pursue it with me. That every once in awhile we forego the happily ever after for the happy endings and sometimes…we still get the two mixed up.  The difference between Larissa and I is she picks herself up, dusts herself off and puts another check in the Lesson Learned column while I roll around in the muck and mire until either someone comes along to pull me out or I realize no one is coming so I have to do it myself. Well, maybe I am not that bad but I do know that this chick is one of the most honest and holding it together writers I know and I admire that. You can catch up with her and read her blog here.

UTA:  We may not be in the same place with our respective processes (I swear, she is doing so much better than me) but we seem to be in the same places at the same time with our struggles, but believe it or not I do not admire her for her emotional fortitude. Well, I do but that is not the main reason she is on my list of women I want to be like when I grow up. I admire her for her courage to live her life. She lives in a foreign land , learning a different culture, new languages and is doing so as a (for all intents and purposes) single mom. She practices a religion she loves which of course, does not conform to the status quo, but she is here to live her life, not someone else’s.  She wants to travel and see more of the world than what she sees outside her window…she wants to walk down strange sidewalks and see different skylines…and she will. She has the guts to pursue her dreams and accomplish her goals and that is so awesome to me. She takes no excuses from anyone (including UTA) and she may be stymied by obstacles once in a while, but she finds a way around, under and over that rock eventually. I wish she held classes on how she does it…I would be late, but I would attend them.

Catherine: She is a fellow blogger and I have mentioned her before. Catherine recently celebrated her blog’s two year anniversary and when I read about her progress, I long to be young and white. Just kidding…but the girl is still at least 3 years away from thirty and has an amazing job, travels and not only has moved on from her heartbreak (the majority of the time), she has a new relationship in which she is really and truly happy. Jealousy runs rampant over here but not over her happiness…over how she has managed to shake it off and move on. I read her posts faithfully and once in awhile she surprises me when she writes about how she still feels the pangs and twinges of hurt from her ex …and the surprise comes from her being able to still identify with that. See, I always thought once you found the next one after THE ONE, THE ONE would just kind of fall off the face of the earth and become a very distant memory. Catherine shows me that even though THE ONE never really goes away, that is no reason to stop the progression forward and embracing a new relationship with a different man and  to always recognize that you too are a different person. Sometimes, breakups are meant to be wake-ups, so get out of bed!

Little Runner Girl:  Let me say up front I call her Little because she is smaller than me and younger than me…it is not meant to be an insult in any way. A Panel member suggested I read her blog and while it is all about her wedding and living a healthy lifestyle (two things which I think will absolutely never happen in my corner of the world), she is interesting, helpful and not all smug and preachy about it. She is HAPPY and it comes through in her writings. And she (along with Artsy Craftsy) were my inspiration for losing 30 pounds…and taking tips/suggestions from Little Runner Girl (cutting out excess sugars and moving more), I have actually LOST weight! It is noticeable enough that even my mother who at times cannot pleased in any way at all asked what was I doing and to keep it up because I was looking great. But LRG inspires and motivates me with her passion….running and eating healthy is not a fad or something to do for her…it is what she wants to do and her happiness at finding a man who shares her passions?? Again, jealousy running rampant…but she makes me want to find my passion which so far seems to be rage against the plight of the coal miner, but I am taking no action. LRG has taught me passion requires action. She is utilizing her talents to make herself and her world a better place and who couldn’t benefit from doing that. Check out her blog here.

So these are the women who inspire me, motivate me and help me channel my jealousy into a positive outlet which should bring out better things in me. Readers, do you have someone (or a lot of someones) who inspire and motivate you? I would love to hear about it if you are willing to share. Well, I am off to clean the apartment, fold the laundry and prep some chicken for the grill for dinner. As always, thanks for stopping past and reading and as usual…enjoy your day!








Advice Column

Every once in awhile I am reminded of just how blessed my life truly is…celebrating 10 years clean was one of those times and I turned the entire week into a love fest. Now the life I am (re) building for myself is returning to normal and coming together…slowly. Still no assignment or job on the horizon but I am still making the phone calls, still submitting the resumes and I may even have to pound the pavement a day or two a week, which is fine. All I can do is lay the groundwork to set the wheels in motion…the rest is up to the Universe. I went to the dental clinic and while still no action, I do have leads and appointment dates…trust me, I am not rushing that process. On the personal front, I needed some help and advice and the Panel did what they always do…they gave it to me and I did what I rarely do…I listened the first time around and am actually heeding their advice. It was said it is hard to believe I need help with all the great advice and insight I have and offer to them, but that is the way it is with most of us. We never heed our own advice and are never able to see our own situations clearly…we are blinded by love, like, caring, understanding….and we always think/feel our situations are different. I have found out the hard way it isn’t but still, I need others to tell me  these things and to advise me and guide me. The Panel is my on-call advice column….one of their many, many benefits.

Artsy Craftsy gave me the first bit of advice after I was bitching and moaning over the fact that Keifer never gave me a callback and ignored my emails after such a great first date. Her first piece of advice was to not take it so personally…it happens more often than one thinks. The second piece was to stop concentrating on the end game and start both playing and enjoying the dating game. The first thing that struck me was “game”…I don’t play games but then I remembered….games are not always mental and some of them can be quite enjoyable. After all, how hard can it be to meet with someone to share conversation along with dinner and/or a movie? If I just stay in the moment, shelve the expectations and stop trying to saddle folks with hidden agendas and plan not only the outcome of the date but where me and this guy will be come football season, I may actually have a great time. And I took her advice and re-posted my movie date ad….even though the first time around I had two dates which were definitely good, it was only dinner and no movies whatsoever, and once I got past the ridiculous posts from men who cannot read and think only with their little head, I found myself with two movie dates and one of the men was an Episcopalian priest! He treated to Ollie burgers, crab pretzels and engaged me in a lively debate following the film. Doubtful there will be repeat dates, but today…it’s okay. I had a fun time, saw some great films and did not do it alone.

Cuz gave me the next piece of advice…actually the entire Panel has been giving me this advice since the beginning, but I am just now in a space/place to listen to it and believe it. He told me what you put up is what you end up with. Actually, this is more of a lesson than advice but I finally see what he/they mean. Contrary to popular belief, putting up with all manners of mistreatment and disrespect do NOT get you noticed by that person you have wrapped your everythings up in…they do not suddenly wake up in the middle of the night realizing you are the best thing since sliced white bread to ever come their way. They continue to treat you the way you have allowed them to, take you for granted and drain you in all kinds of ways (physically, emotionally and maybe financially) and when they leave, you may not even be worth of an explanation, apology or a goodbye. And the kicker is, they will feel they have done nothing wrong as you pretty showed them with your passive-aggressive tactics that it’s okay. This lesson/nugget of advice came about because we have heard that him has mentioned/asked about me to Chef and actually reminisced about me/us to the people in his department on the Island. Out loud. The man who rejected me and erased me and all we shared from his memory banks now remembers me… granted it is the offbeat and crazy things (but what else makes a great story?) and only one instance of it so far, but the mere fact I came into his mind and he verbalized it is proof positive that shit is going to hell in a handbasket over in that camp (and maybe him is learning this lesson also) and this time, it not speculation and has nothing to do with him having only 2 outfits and a pair of flip flops.

Of course, I was initially over the moon and wanted to reach out….RIGHT NOW and Morning Person and Chef both gave me the same piece of advice: you are free to make your own choices; however, you are not free of the consequences of said choices. I definitely had to think about that one…sure, I could jump all over the fact that this could finally be my validation and vindication. Him actually could be learning a lesson and is reaching out in his indirect and convoluted way….but what if this isn’t what I think it is? What if I reach out only to be met with him still reporting in to the BTH on an hourly basis or better….him still sticks to his “happier than I have ever been” story? And here is a new one: what if it IS what I think it is…do I really want a man who was too cowardly to say goodbye and can only attempt to say hello and help me  through others? I just HAD that….I am STILL coming to terms with that. I do not need that …and if it is what I would want it to be….I don’t want it. All that does is show me that I have grown and changed and him hasn’t. I cannot pick up where I left off and I cannot allow him to know that there is still a tiny piece of me that would let him do just that.

You cannot change people’s minds or mindsets….Morning Person told me that over dinner last week and this piece of advice is what I am holding onto. Him has made his bed…not my fault he cannot sleep in it. I am just now getting used to sleeping in my bed which the majority of the time I manage to make with sheets of satisfaction and pillows of peace. Him and I had our chance (several of them, in fact) and each and every time, him tossed them away. I offered suggestions, warnings and advice after he treated me as less than and the man ignored them. I have nothing more to offer him because if him is reaching out this way it is not because his eyes have been opened…him is seeking the familiar and what was comfortable, not to offer me all him has given BTH on a silver platter…and I am no longer the person who would take him back. This chick is liking waking up and not having to deal with his inadequacies or trying to gauge his moods. I enjoy not being ignored. I enjoy giving gifts to the people I care about and having them acknowledge them and appreciate them…with him, I would have to track him down and beat him over the head to get a simple thank you. Today, I matter to people; I am praised for things I do with my clothes on and overall, I am happy with myself and my life…no way can I give that up for mights, maybes and excuses.

So this is the advice I have been given and I am heeding; so far it is all working out and giving me a slightly new mindset and attitude. Hopefully some of this advice can help someone else stick to the path of re-building and self-improvement or be a catalyst to jumpstarting someone’s program or process. Now to plan my day: unemployment has thrown a wrench in the program by stating after one week of continued claims, I have exhausted my funds. Oh, and that they paid me for two weeks when in actuality I have only been paid for one week. I am not highly upset or being overly dramatic (inside, I am seething and Ghetto Black Chick is preparing to go down to their HQ )…obviously, a mistake has been made and I have faith it will work out to my satisfaction, which it did. It is a glitch in their system and there should be no disruptions in pay. Onward to the rest of my day… another movie is on my agenda along with checking out some yoga classes (very much beginner yoga classes) and I plan to cook some dinner.

 As always, thanks for stopping past and reading and as usual….enjoy your day!





With a LOT of Help from My Friends

Today is the day…I officially acknowledge 10 years (uninterrupted) in recovery. Ten years without a drink or a drug, of having a roof over my head, food in my fridge and clean clothes to wear. Ten years of living, loving and being emotionally aware. So much has been accomplished in the past decade on so many levels and I can take credit for none of it.

I was placed here by the grace and mercy of my Higher Power and I have managed to stay here (in spite of myself) because of the wonderfully loving, supporting and encouraging people in my life. I have so many people I am indebted to and grateful for…not sure if I can get everyone in this post but I am going to try…and if I did not mention you, please know it is a complete and total oversight on my part, not yours.

Higher Power: I am so unworthy and undeserving of your blessings and mercy because You alone know the dirt I still do and I know I do not thank You often enough, but thank You a million times for seeing who I can become and finding me worthy of Your favor. It is because of you I sleep in peace and awaken with joy.

My Parents: I love you so very, very much and I know I have not been the best child and I still cause you grief, worry and gray hairs. But please know I do not know what I would do if you both were not still here and loving me, advising me and being the best friends anyone could ever hope to have. Your love and prayers keep me going every day.

My Siblings: We fuss and argue (I would say fight but we are all too old for the physical crap now) , we laugh and we love and I know I am horrible at communicating with you all on a consistent basis, but please know I love  each of you so very, very much. You all are the ones who empathize, sympathize and give me the ass kickings I need when I get too complacent or begin to believe my own hype a little too much.

The Panel: Where to begin? That I would be blessed with the most incredible group of people and be able to call you all friends is amazing…to call each of you best friends (each and every one of you bring something to my life that no one else does, can or will) leaves me in shock and awe. I get understanding, unconditional love from people not related to me by blood, and patience that would try a saint. You all  have opened your hearts to me, share your families with me, make the ordinary extraordinary, make the hard things easy, simplify the complicated and I cannot get a lie from any of you. You make me smile and laugh, we share new experiences, you cry with me and encourage me when I am ready to give up. You inspire me to set new goals, dreams and challenges and push me to make them a reality. I could go on and on so I will stop here.

Aunts, Uncles, Cousins: There are so many of you (that’s a good thing!) and your love and prayers kept me when I was out there and keep me now that I am in here. You have taken me in, had interventions and never gave up on me finding my way even when I looked to be a hopeless and helpless cause. And today, you make sure I keep on the straight and narrow and remind me that while there is no such thing as perfection, I still have room for improvement. And you feed me when I show up at your doorstep….love, family and good food. It doesn’t ‘get better than that!

The Church/The Program: I have to put you together because you truly were a package deal for me. You all were the Divine Intervention I needed, and the Church helped open my eyes that there was more to life than what I was doing with it. Together, you all reminded me that I was raised with love and respect and to have love and respect and it started with me. My backsliding, my temper tantrums…each of you had seen it before and it did not faze you. You brought forth the values that were instilled in me by parents and showed me just how strong I really am and what I am capable of accomplishing when I put my mind to it. You told me and showed me I was a responsible and productive member of society and reminded me I was a lady first and foremost…and when I thanked you for that, I was told it is easy when you have someone from good stock and loving parents. You taught me structure, told me constantly I deserve more than to be second (or sometimes) third best, helped me improve my cooking skills and it is because of you I do chores on a damn near daily basis…and even though the three women I want to thank the most I have lost contact with…if I saw you today, I would do nothing but hug and thank you for the gift you gave me.

The Island: You gave me a chance when I was just starting out with the rebuilding of my life and gave me the professional break I needed. When I got there I was told it was the Island of Misfit Toys and I blended right in. Still unsure if that is a good thing, but it was the best thing. You all taught me invaluable office skills and training, taught me proper (somewhat) office etiquette and gave me genuine friendships that are still going strong today and will last a lifetime. I had the opportunity to meet and work with some of the most incredible and incredibly funny people (The Greek, DBC, The Condo Person, Mother Africa, The Princess Mommy, The Loan Processor aka Baby Girl)  who gave me wisdom, laughter and brought out a work ethic in me I never knew I had. However, you have spoiled me for other jobs and supervisors who do not believe in your flexibility but I will learn to adapt as you taught me how to do that also.

Reliable One: YOU are a heaven-sent angel and material things alone will never be able to repay you for all you have done and still do for me.

Him: I know…it ended in the most crappy way imaginable and there are days I hate him with an intensity that defies logic and imagination but when he was somewhat sane, he was a great friend and a better boss. Him was the first man who saw more in me than the sexual…we actually talked with each other, not to or at each other. We shared secrets and him was the first man to truly see me and still, the man saw not one flaw. Him accepted me as I was and where I was and never asked for anything from me. Before BTH, I never worried about him mistreating me, disrespecting me or throwing me under the bus. With him, I learned to trust again and him showed me that there are some men out there (somewhere) that see beyond a dress size and an unconventional past to see the person within. For a little while, him restored my faith in men and love and I thank him for that.

I already know I am leaving SO many people out and I apologize…just know that I know who the Good Lord has placed in my life…and who He has removed. You all have played such huge roles in helping me achieve a goal I certainly never thought possible. My appreciation and gratitude for the gift you all have given me is boundless.

Okay, I am crying two rivers over here and my nose is all clogged so I am going to end this post. As always, thanks for stopping past and reading and as usual….enjoy your day!


Controlled Chaos

I think I have had the week from hell, although one of my readers (and fellow blogger…have you read her yet?) says my life is balanced, normal and relaxed. I guess in actuality, she ‘s right; after all, it has been life on life’s terms and no one is sick or ill, no one is dead or dying and even with the disappointments, there were highlights also. I was approached by a temp agency who loved my resume and asked me to take their online skills assessment; how excited was I?? I just knew the skills assessment would be a breeze and the job they wanted me for was offering seriously decent pay…except their skills assessment was unlike any other I had EVER taken and the questions had me stumped! I am sure I failed miserably since I was exchanging emails and phone calls with the recruiter fast and furiously before I took the tests and have heard absolutely nothing since taking the test. The date with Keifer apparently was not as good for him as it was for me  (he is officially in the “them” category) and somehow the apartment has fallen into disarray and the laundry has piled up again in less than a week.

However, on the flip side….I had another real date this week and while it was basically dinner at a hole in the wall Chinese buffet (food was incredibly fresh and yummy) and a drive through Old Town Alexandria (trust me, not the original plan), it was quiet and the conversation was interestingly random. I found out I definitely qualify for the unemployment extension, had the best boneless beef short ribs while on an outing with Reliable One, Oscar came to town for a whirlwind visit and I got to talk with pretty much all the Panel members except Buddy, UTA (she is on summer vay-cay)  and Quiet One.

It was talks with Girlfriend, Oscar and Sister Someone that brought about this post….three of us are in post-breakup mode and one would think enough time has passed that we would be okay, moving on and putting together the pieces after picking them up…and we ARE, the majority of the time. But there is a big difference when you are moving on because you have to versus moving on because you want to. For me, moving on because I have to is a lot like controlled chaos…nothing is right, shit is still falling apart and all that goes wrong can be laid at him’s doorstep but I hold it together and keep it moving because the alternative…realizing that in a way, I am still stuck in limbo is simply not acceptable. As long as I keep moving and telling myself it’s okay and I’m good…it is my reality; once I stop moving, once I stop being okay and good…then I AM stuck and all I want are the good times I had with him with him.. I don’t know if anyone else understands what I am saying, but I do and today, that is good enough for me.  At some point, I would like to think has to becomes wants to but I think it is after we have had another chance to make things right and we see nothing has changed …or the best.man.ever comes along and sweeps away all the dust and cobwebs left in the empty corners of your heart and/or mind. Unlike Sister Someone, Girlfriend, Oscar and I have no walls of delusion to protect and blind us; we have no Brother Everything who would be dependent upon us for shelter, transportation and a weekly allowance. We have only each other, our self-respect and exes who seem to think our grass isn’t quite green enough and seriously, folks…dating is HARD. You put the best parts of yourself out there and of course the other party is not even about to put themselves out there except for the bare basics; then after the date, whether you give in on the first date (which makes you easy) or you don’t (which makes you a classy lady), you still end up rejected and after so many rejections… loneliness, vulnerability and doubt creep in and we all kind of fall off the wagon.

Girlfriend: I love her to pieces and what is not to love? She is sexy, gorgeous, funny and adventurous. Yet, she is unappreciated by the men she chooses to let her guards down with. She has bouts of loneliness and vulnerability and now, despite us both saying we would not recycle from the pool of existing exes, that is what she is now considering.  Little Marine (remember him?) wants to try again with her. He swears she is the one he loves and he will do right by her this time but Girlfriend is still up in the air about it even after a date with him last week. She is not sure if this the right thing to do or even if it is what she wants (she is still living her life and making summer plans that do not include Little Marine), but at least she will know what to expect if she decides in his favor. I don’t blame her if she does give in…if you are going to be hurt and rejected, let it be with someone whose games  you already know. That way you haven’t exerted too much in the way of energy and efforts and you are already familiar with the hurt. You know, when I said dating was hard, I mean it is hard for everyone…Girlfriend is everything a guy says he is looking for in a girl. She is petite, younger, curvy/shapely, active, independent, college educated, intelligent, fun/funny and enjoys being adventurous  and we are both in the same boat. Although, she has an ace in the hole even though she won’t know it until she reads this next sentence.  I have a message for her from Cuz (and I quote): “You will never be alone or without someone who will love you, adore you and do their best every day to make you happy. Let’s do lunch and put our bus (trains wreck and derail) in motion so we can both spend the rest of our lives smiling instead of crying.”

Oscar: Our resident wild child came to town last week for an overnight visit….she caught me by total surprise (I am spontaneous with notice) but I was so glad to see her!! We ate carryout food (neither of us ate a lot of it), watched Friends (she has a thing for Ross) and talked pretty much until dawn. She plans to come back down later this week (fingers crossed) and I can treat her like a tourist and show her some of the sights. But during our talks, we both kept drifting to our exes…she too is having a hard time with the dating game and I am sure it is harder when you are a single mom. We both wonder are we that bad that we had to be basically abandoned and thrust into the cesspool that is dating in the 21st century (yes, it was a slight pity party) but I can definitely relate to Oscar’s perspective. Him, Jr. was her first love and all she knew. She did not want to move on for any reason whatsoever…as bad as it had gotten between them, it was what she knew…and she didn’t move on until she realized that time and life was moving her on whether she wanted to or not. So she listened to us Panel members who told her not to settle, better things were coming…just be patient. Work on yourself, heal yourself and the bigger door will open. But sometimes opportunity doesn’t knock and you have to go looking for it, so sometimes she does. And even though she is faithfully working on the self-improvements and trying to do things differently…she is still getting the same results. How do you deal with that? And what difference does it make whether you have control of it or not…chaos is chaos and if she has to deal with that crap, why can’t it be the chaos she knows and is familiar with?

Sister Someone: Sometimes I wonder did it EVER dawn on this woman to pull on her big girl panties, accept defeat, scrap Plan A and get to work on Plans B-Z while she made the transition from victim to survivor, and I am going to say NO. Final answer. In a way, I admire her tenacity in not accepting the blindsided blow life gave her when Brother Everything left her the first time around. I can certainly understand…she gave her ALL to have that man in her life and spared no expense; even though I am a firm believer that it simply is not that hard or that much work if  a man really wants you and wants to be with you, Sister Someone is proof positive that if you want something bad enough, you CAN and WILL get it. All you need to do is apply yourself and have no shame in your game. I know I say the girl is in denial and delusion and is settling all kinds of ways, but in dating, compromise is key. And what is compromise if not settling? Basically, you are scratching off some of your must-haves in order to simply…have. And she does have…he may not be the best thing and yes, he may be using her and have his own hidden agendas, but isn’t that what Oscar and I are willing to take if given the chance and Girlfriend is debating? Sometimes I think we are no different from SS…she was just more honest, more aggressive and controlled (or maybe orchestrated)  her chaos straight out the gate with her approach.

Me: I am growing weary of the transient arrangements. Yes, they allow me to more or less maintain my current lifestyle and the entertainment value from some of the responses are almost worth the headache of reading and weeding but I want something stable and substantial. There are times I feel disconnected, where I feel as if him has moved on, become someone different but somehow I am still the same and still in the same spot. Almost as if life is in fast motion right outside my line of vision and try as I might, I cannot catch up.  I do my best to be okay without him in my life (and remembering his disrespect, his treatment of me towards the end , the lies and the fact he now has a wife helps greatly with that), but then I hear the stories and how far he has fallen in such a short amount of time and I feel sorry for him and wonder why his ass has not made a beeline back to me yet.  The man needs a clothing drive, some super sized meals and  I just get the feeling that the bed has made is uncomfortable  so he does not lie in it or sleep at night. Yet, for all that….him would rather stay there than come back over here where he was loved if nothing else. Even though I am in a peaceful, happy space the majority of the time and I was excited to have two real dates, I want  to know there will be second and third dates. The rejection and the knowing I am just at the start of the race  allows me to still wonder what if sometimes, to still sometimes wish it were him saying all the wonderful things the others say to/about me and while him is no longer the first thing in the morning or the last thing at night…the man still sneaks in and I let him. The chaos and I take turns with the control.

Which is why I am incredibly happy and glad Artsy Craftsy is back onboard and fully hands-on again. She is the one who understands, empathizes and is the voice of reason. She hears us and knows we are still hurting and still trying to find our way, and while we all know great things happen when you least expect it, she understands that the waiting is the hardest part. So when she heard about what all was going on and pretty much where I was with the waffling and wanting, she gave me the best advice ever: I don’t want him…I want the comfort and complacency a reconciliation will provide. No one wants to put themselves out there, but you have to if you want opportunity to find you. It cannot knock on your door if it does not know where you are. You have to deal with and control the chaos because it IS your reality now and recycling may delay that reality for a minute of two, but at the end of the day…you are back to the original square one (as much as you say you will not put up with the same crap, you will) and no one has the time nor the patience to go through this all over again and over the same person. Yes, it sucks, but dust yourself off, take breaks, continue the self-improvements and the healings and the process…eventually (and once it happens, the time it took will not even matter) it will pay off with the man and relationship of your dreams. And that’s when the hard work really begins.

So this was like the longest post ever and I thank you for sticking with me. As always, thanks for stopping past and reading and as usual….enjoy your day!



Mirror, Mirror

With all the craze surrounding the darker side of Snow White (Once Upon a Time, Snow White and The Huntsman), everyone should know the rhyme that accompanies the title of this post. Mirror, mirror on the wall…who’s the fairest of them all? Well, a couple of nights ago, the Evil Queen AND Snow White would have eaten their hearts out because I was hot, sexy and damnit, I KNEW it. And so did my date….it was wonderful, magical and lasted all of two hours…and I want to tell you all about my two hour fairytale.

I have told you all about how I was supposed to have a real date with a guy who I swear looks like Keifer Sutherland…did I mention how attractive and sexy and handsome I thought he was? Well, I told pretty much every female member of the Panel and they all agree; hell, Morning Person said he was the best looking man ever in my history of men. So I was all up in my head about the date…I mean, he looks like Keifer Sutherland and I look like…well, me… and remember not 3 days before we made the date I was calling myself the Divine Bovine. I was a wreck and all the negative self-everythings were everywhere. It was like a crowd of people talking all at once in my head and I simply could not shut them up.

But, I jump ahead of myself…I am sure someone reading this is wondering where/how did I meet this guy..and the answer is Craigslist. Not in the usual/typical Craigslist way but via the strictly platonic section where one has a 5% chance of meeting someone real who will not send the very tasteless cock shot picture in the first email. It was a gorgeous day and I was feeling random and adventurous…I enjoy my own company but that day, I wanted to meet someone new. I stated in my ad that I was looking to catch a movie (The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel), I could and would pay my own way and was not looking for sex or a relationship in any shape, form or fashion. You HAVE to say that or else if you actually do meet with the person, they will be trying to grope you everywhere and in every which way. And I got not one response and ended up catching the flick with Busy Bee (and we had yummy club sandwiches)…we had the best time and when I returned home, I had 3 responses, one which was from Keifer who said he would be available Tuesday evening.

So this how I met him, and we emailed and talked on the phone Sunday-Tuesday. He is separated and visits his children every weekend (they are in another state), he is a foodie and travels a lot for his job. One thing he did (and this is important to remember)…he blocked his number when he called me stating that he wanted to make sure I was not some crazy, stalker psycho and once we met, that would not be an issue. He had to go to a state 5 hours away on Monday for work and would be meeting me pretty much right after he returned on Tuesday afternoon/evening, but then he emailed to say they were leaving later than they had planned and I suggested we re-schedule. He said NO WAY…he was not putting off meeting me another day. He wanted to meet and dazzle me to ensure no one stole me away from him, so I was thinking it would be a later date (original plan was a 7pm movie with maybe dinner afterwards) but thought that would be good as I could use all the time I could to prepare. I went to the nail salon and got my facial hair waxed and my hands and toes polished and painted; I exfoliated my face; cleaned the house (just in case…I KNOW I stated no hanky-panky but who expected someone like Keifer on Craigslist??) and had a wardrobe crisis….a drawback to retail therapy is one can end up with too many cutie-pie outfits and even with two closets full of clothes, I was thinking I had nothing to wear. I ended up with a colorful (purple, black, gold and red) tribal print maxi dress, colorful chandelier earrings and chunky brown sandals.

I was so incredibly nervous (sure sign I like(d) the guy) …I really wanted to make a good impression and all the superlative compliments he had been given me for at least two days straight seemed to be more of a detriment than anything…after all, fantasy/imagination is always better than the reality, but I got it together and when we met, I swear it was like something out of a movie. I was standing in front of the restaurant at 8pm trying to scan the crowds at the subway entrance across the street so I could see him…and when he stepped out onto the street, I saw him at the exact moment he looked across the street and saw me….and the smile that broke across his face I had not seen since the early days with Him. He told me I looked stunning (who has ever called me that?) and said I smelled enchanting. I told him the perfume was called How To Catch A Man Named Keifer….in reality it was Madonna’s Truth or Dare.

When we got inside, the restaurant was crowded and he grabbed my hand so he would not lose me in the crowd and we found a table in a secluded, not as noisy corner. He carried my food for me (European style bar/bistro place), fetched my drinks and we both had yummy pasta and shared a garlic grilled shrimp salad. He talked, made me laugh out loud, noticed my grooming efforts and adored my hair, even when it started slipping backwards off my head. He told me about his children and showed me pictures of the business road trip. I got complimented constantly (he said I was the most beautiful woman in the room) and I was in heaven. I mean, here was a guy who could easily check off the majority of the boxes on my checklist, he insisted on paying for dinner and he found me to be damn near perfect. After dinner, we walked around Chinatown holding hands and when it was time to part ways, he hugged me, told me I was delightful,  kissed me on the cheek and put me in a cab. He called about a half hour after I got home (he lives a good hour away from the metro stop he had to travel to), told me he had a blast and wanted to go out again next week…but this is what raised a pink flag: his number was STILL BLOCKED. Artsy Craftsy, Oscar, Morning Person and Girlfriend all said to just not worry about that…I can address it on the second date. Except, he has not emailed or called since then. I said I was not going to initiate contact (if he wants me, he can chase me) but of course I did send an email. Light and breezy, wishing him a wonderful weekend and if he was still up for movies next week, so was I . Still nothing.

I feel disappointed and am trying to analyze what went wrong…I would say what happened but a great date like that does not end with total silence and blocked numbers. Obviously something went wrong, but maybe I am overreacting…after all, I had expectations which is something I swore I would never have again. Sex can be a one-time only thing, why not a date? Or maybe he is simply looking for an occasional hang out buddy, but that does not excuse his ignoring my email, which means he can uncheck at least one of the boxes on my checklist. Not going to lie, totally bummed over here but I still have the other two responses from the ad and have been chatting with those guys….one of them wants to go out tonight if I am available…..and I think I am available. Keifer was great and showed me more attention and paid me more compliments than I have had in a very long time. He showed me that what I seek is not unattainable but apparently more time and patience is needed. For a couple of hours on a random Tuesday evening, he made me feel like a Princess and as if I really were the fairest of them all, in all the land.

As always, thanks for stopping past and reading (hopefully it did not come across too convoluted). I will be back soon with more posts and as usual….enjoy your day!

Much Ado About Nothing

I have not blogged in a minute, and I cannot even apologize for that. This is not in the beginning when I was pouring out all of my emotions and hopes and fears as soon as they arose. What a convoluted, delusional time that was for me, and if you have been with me since the beginning…THANK YOU for sticking with me. Now, with time, processing and the help of you readers and the Panel, things are not the OMG disaster I think they are. I am learning to handle life on its own terms (again) and when broken down…life is rather normal and honestly, there is really nothing to say. There are things happening just below the surface…kind of like cracks in the foundation of a building or the tiny bubbles in a pot of water right before it becomes a full-blown boil. Not with everyone on the Panel or even with me, but sometimes peace is short-lived and I think we all are trying to hold onto that before the storms hit and we have to pop open our umbrellas.

So while we wait for the new drama to fully mature, I thought I would tell you what I have been up to during the break. Fair warning, the title of the post says it all. It is not a lot and may bore you to tears but remember….the drama is coming.

Job Front: It is bleak and desolate….since I did the three day assignment, nothing has come my way. I have called the temp agencies, filled out applications and submitted resumes. I am still optimistic simply because I have an income (small as it is) coming in, but I am now on the unemployment extension and truly believe that waking up at 6am justifies a nap by 10am. It is time to return to work.

Business Plan: Old Me has resurfaced with a vengeance and New Me is no match for her. No research, no draft business plan. The closest I have come is looking at Vista business cards on the web and debating should I invest in creating business cards. If nothing else, I can always market myself as an independent contractor…their choice if they want to utilize my admin skills, my writing talents or have me massage them.

Dates: I have had 5 great dates and two that were pretty awful. By awful, I do not mean my life was in danger or I had to go all Ghetto Black Chick ka-razy on the dudes…awful as in they both got up and left in the middle of the initial chit-chat. My self-esteem took all kinds of nosedives: was I too fat, too tall? Was it the missing tooth? Was it because I am black? I drove myself bonkers for about a good hour before I realized that seriously, not everyone is for everybody. It was a bit of a blow that they occurred back to back but c’est la vie. (That’s French for “that’s life” but you probably already know that) And my next 5 dates (all within 5 days of each other) were awesome, great and terrific. And here is a bit of news: I have a real date…not an arrangement. A date…where we will go out for a movie and maybe dinner afterwards. A date where we will talk and learn more about each other and the only action will be possibly holding hands and maybe a good night kiss. He is taller (6’2”) , my age and looks like Keifer Sutherland. Only drawback is he is only separated (wife and 2 children in another state), not divorced. Oh, and he thinks I am a BLAST (yes, in all caps), gorgeous and funny….and he has seen me with the missing tooth. So you already know he is at least half-crazy.

Diet: So Memorial Day weekend, I attended a family cookout. Did not want to go but my sis-sis dragged me and I have to say I totally enjoyed myself. I was feeling pretty good about my weight loss efforts and limited myself to one plate…had too much potato salad and a double cheeseburger (did not eat it all) but balanced it out with fresh melon and nothing but water and ice. Yet, when I saw a picture a cousin took of me (AND posted on Facebook!) I almost fell out. I decided I was changing my name (and the name of the blog) to The Divine Bovine…I was so not comfortable seeing myself. Of course, when I alerted the Panel to this atrocity, everyone said I looked fine and at three members stated I had lost weight! Then I got to wondering just how big was I/am I and drove everyone batshit crazy for about two days.

I have no idea how I look but I do know I am phasing even more sugar out of my diet…I cut back because complete sugar withdrawal had me headachy and cranky. I am sure my body was trying to detox itself but I am so used to sugar and sweets, cold turkey is not a viable option.  I am doing pretty good overall: portion control, mostly Crystal Light, water and unsweetened teas for drinking (although I still sneak in a soda or two in a week), walking my apartment hallways for at least 20 minutes a day. But I still get in a candy bar here and there and I am sure the potato chips are not doing me any favors. I am wondering if I should go back to the diet shakes…you know where you have one for breakfast, one for lunch and a sensible dinner. I could do a shake and a piece of fruit for the first two meals and salads or lean proteins for dinner. I don’t know…I may try it and see what happens with that. I am not looking for quick results (okay, I am but I know it won’t happen) but looking for something I can stick with that won’t make me feel deprived.

And this is what life has been like since the last post…pretty boring, right? But I am learning, as we all are. Yes, I still tend to blow things out of proportion but I am also realizing it is not that serious. So what two guys did not like my looks….I am not looking to attract every man or to make every dollar. YAY for the date and simply because he finds me attractive does not make him crazy…maybe he will be the one who proves to be the exception and not the rule. I admit, I am a little nervous about the date. I miss kissing (these asswipe dates do not count) and intimacy SO much…and that is what scares me about the date with Keifer. I am worried I will fall harder than I am supposed to or blind myself to what it really is and go with my version of what it could be simply because here is an attractive guy giving me some attention, and honestly, when was the last time a man actually paid ME some attention? Him was the last one to actually see me, listen to me and want to get to know me…and we all know how that ended up.

But, I am putting all negativity aside (fresh starts, new beginnings) and going to consult with Oscar, Girlfriend and Artsy-Craftsy on what to wear, which hair to wear and to learn how to go slow and act coy. We want a different result this time so time for a crash course in new things. I will be back sooner versus later with new posts and as always, thanks for stopping past and reading and as usual…enjoy your day!