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Reflections

24 Nov

What a week. I have felt like I was in the middle of a downward-spiraling hurricane of depression and self-pity, with no way to pull myself out. I’m climbing back up. I always do. And as I spend Thanksgiving day alone, I feel the need to reflect out loud about the things that have brought me to this point, and why I know I can move forward.

Yesterday, when I was trying to figure out why I felt like my soul was being crushed into a grey mass of oblivion, I knew part of it was the impending holiday spent alone. I was shutting everyone out, pushing away friends and family, because I didn’t want to be a part of anyone else’s family day. I didn’t want to put on a happy face and go through the motions of someone else’s traditions. I wanted to be alone.  Honestly, holidays for the past few years have been positively hell even with my own family around for them. Either Mr. Smith was about to deploy, or deployed, or back from deployment and making me miserable. Our holidays always sucked.

Then I thought about the last time I was alone on Thanksgiving. It was 1999. I lived in Spain at the time, and I was pregnant from a one-night stand with a married guy. I decided to have an abortion, but since the procedure is illegal in Spain, I had to fly to the States. I had no one to come with me. I flew in on Tuesday, found a hotel near the clinic, and went by myself to have an abortion on Wednesday. I have never felt so stranded in my life. Until the next day, when I sat in a hotel room, in physical and mental anguish, alone on Thanksgiving day. My family knew I was in the States, and my mom was upset that I couldn’t fly to Kansas to spend the day with them. I told her I was there on a temporary work assignment. I flew back to Spain the next day, and I resumed a miserably lonely existence riding out some of the worst months of my life. Which is saying a lot, considering some of my shit.

Back to the present time… yesterday, I opened up and try to relay this bit of history to someone I’ll call Birch who was trying to understand why I was so upset. Mid-story, I got a phone call from Mr. Smith, who had been blowing me up about needing to talk about divorce “stuff”. That turned out to be a subterfuge for a much larger announcement, made even more ironic by my trip down memory lane… he was calling to tell me that his girlfriend (who also happens to be his first ex-wife aka Voldemort #2, for those who aren’t in the know) is pregnant. And they wanted to tell Bug about it, along with the rest of his family on Thanksgiving (all of whom had been inviting me to join them… thank God I didn’t).

End of phone call. *Cue meltdown.*

Birch called back. I told him what I had just learned and started bawling. I don’t know why it hurt me so much. It just hurt. Usually at this point, I would shut down, stop talking to anyone, hang up, go radar silent. For some reason, I can talk to Birch like I’ve never talked to anyone. I still feel like I don’t make sense outside of my head, and that I’m rambling and awkward, but at least I’m talking.

Eventually it started to come out. I was tired of seeing everyone else being happy around while I’m alone. I’m tired of feeling confused and lost. I’m tired of keeping my feelings so closely guarded that I have no outlet for them. And, in this case, my feelings were of fear. Fear that Mr. Smith and Voldemort #2 are starting a family, one that will include my son and will give him something that I can’t… like siblings, and two parents… fear that I will never be happy or in love again. That part of me will always be alone in a hotel room on Thanksgiving, hating myself for the decisions I’ve made. Ugh.

I spent the rest of yesterday in a pretty solid funk. I stayed up late, on my couch, drinking and smoking myself in to oblivion. At least I calmed down a bit, had a couple of good conversations — including one in which I called Bittersweet to tell her the baby news and we shared a good laugh over what an idiot my ex is. I went to bed feeling about a million times better than I had that morning.

When I woke up today (at almost 2 p.m.), it was hard to get out of bed knowing that everyone else I know was probably surrounded by family or friends, eating, sharing, getting on each other’s nerves… but I took a deep breath and got up anyway.

I cooked myself some awesome food, looked up movie times to go see a show, thought about getting in the shower to get ready to get out of the house… and then I proceeded to lay on the couch surrounded by blankets, pillows, my heating pad, and food. I watched a lot of Glee, and ignored “happy Thanksgiving” text messages. I talked to Bug on the phone and tried to not cry when he asked me how my day was.

Maybe that sounds awful and depressing, but it’s an improvement over how I’ve been feeling. Because I need to cut myself some slack and take a day to rest and just… FEEL. Without wallowing in guilt or self-pity for sometimes being down, or having days (hell, weeks) when I don’t get done what I want to get done. I have a past, and some of it is brutal. But I have come so far and learned so much. Now, I have beautiful things in my life that I can appreciate even more because of everything I’ve experienced.

So, today, I am thankful. For being strong enough to be alone. For being able to move forward and open myself up again. For being able to recognize that part of having a lot of good in your life means sometimes having a little bit of pain and darkness. I’m thankful for my past, and even more thankful for all the possibilities of my future.

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Re-evaluating Relativity

27 May

Tonight I got to spend some time with my very good friend Mary Jane. She’s so much fun. Any little bit of time with her just lights up my day. Today she graduated with a teaching certificate in her field so getting to see her was extra special. Plus, watching the latest episode of Glee together definitely helped.

When I got home, I was reflecting on my time in Kansas and how much things have changed. I came here a married, brand-new first-time mom, waiting on her husband to get back from a deployment to Iraq. I am leaving (almost) divorced, a confident mom of an amazing nearly-four-year-old, new college graduate with a kick-ass degree, my own business, and recently out of the closet to everyone… and proud of it.

I mean, hello?! Monumental life changes much?

One of the things I have always embraced in my life is the knowledge that I have NO idea what the next year will bring. I can look back one year from any point in my life. And I never would have imagined what was coming next. I realize that’s a terrifying prospect for some people. Both as it relates to it happening to them, and as it relates to it happening to someone with whom they are in a committed relationship.

I get that. Really.

But it’s not me. I relish the constant reincarnation of self. The major things, like what I listed above, aren’t typical changes for me. The small tweaks of self-realization on a daily basis are the changes that drive the larger cog of my existence.

What’s amazing is seeing how far I’ve come in such a relatively short amount of time (considering the length of the average life span, and taking out of consideration the fact that I still think I’m going to die when I’m 45)… and thinking about how much more I have to see and experience.

It’s all relative to where you’ve been.

On the line of relativity, tonight I also thought about how amazing it has been to make new friends over the past few months, mostly since I’ve come out. I’m finally getting to know people as myself. The closest thing I’ve been to my true self, ever. I don’t have some subconscious lump in the back of my throat, I am more relaxed, I am so much more in the moment now.

Because I can finally just be me.

Here Goes Nothing

25 May

I’m back out there. I’d like to say “and better than ever” but that will remain to be seen. Instead of trying to pull of an entire blog revamp before I republished my site, I decided to take it a piece at a time.

Part of the revamp is just aesthetic, but part of it is filtering back through all my old entries and editing the names to protect the innocent (and the not-so-innocent). I know it’s not fool-proof. It’s not meant to be. It’s just meant to give a veil of privacy to myself, my friends, and my family.

So! As I get a section of posts updated, I’ll mention it in a brief post in case you’re new here and want to read them, or if you’ve been around since my early days and want to reminisce about the stupid crap I used to do. Either way, I look forward to sharing more with you, as a lot of exciting (good AND bad) things have happened in my life recently, and I feel like I’m finally moving in a great direction.

What I Learned This Weekend

3 Apr

File under “Being a Newbie Homo.” Also, “Learning to Adapt to Being Gay in a Straight World.”

What I learned this weekend can be summed up in the text exchange I had with Hippie Rancher today, about my Saturday night out with two of my straight friends from high school:

HR: Did you meet lots of women?

Me: No, I did not. We stayed one place longer than we expected to hear a band B2 knows. So we didn’t make it to the girl bar.

Me: I got to be a stand0offish bitch to all the straight guys who persisted in hitting on me. On a positive note, I now realize why gay people don’t like to go to straight bars.

And, the story could end there and you’d maybe get the point, but when have I ever let a chance to tell a great story pass me by? Uh, never.

I mean… for serious. I had a wonderful, amazing weekend of chilling with fun people with (relatively) little drama, in Wichita. Friday night, hit up my first MMA fight at a venue featuring local fighters, for a  kids’ charity event.  Great group of people I met through a friend at school. Bought shots for a ring girl. Screamed and jumped up and down while guys pummeled each other. Left wanting to MMA fight. Did a little dancing. Made out with a girl on the dance floor. Left, got DIVINE street ‘dawgs from a vendor — complete with cucumbers, pickles, onions, jalapenos, and chili.  Total heartburn special. Totally worth it. And topped the night off with local greasy spoon Mexican cafe, Rene’s. Colorado burrito? Hell yes. Get one.

Here’s where it gets potentially messy. No one in the group knows I’m gay, except maybe the guy from school but we’ve never had “the” convo.  On the way to drop people off, one of the guys I danced with had me sit in his lap because we were seriously smooshed in this truck. Well, he decides to get out when they drop me off, and follow me to the house. I’m like, “Uhhh… mkay. Maybe he left his car here. Maybe he needs to pee and they’re waiting on him. Maybe he just really wants to have a great conversation.” Really? I know better than that!

But I feel like, since I’ve come out fully, that there should be some external change that other people can recognize the same way I feel a huge internal change from how my life was even three months ago.  And I am still coming to grips with having to have the “gay” conversation with almost every human being I get in to a decent conversation with. Or assumptions are made (like the one that was made this night) and then people get confused. And a little mad.

So, this guy and I sit at the dining room table, alone in B2’s house at 2 a.m. And we have an awesome conversation about spirituality and life after death, and… of all things… our mutual history with WWE/WWF wrestling.  Random, right? My kind of shit. I LOVE meeting people through completely chance encounters and having great conversation. But I digress…

A couple hours later, around 4:30 a.m., this guy says, “Well, it’s late and I’d better either leave or go to bed.”

To which I replied, “I can drive you home if you’d like.”

“You can if you want. I’m just saying that if I crash in a bed with you, there’s a small chance I’ll try to pull something on you,” he threw out there.

After a pause, I managed, “Would it help you not feel that way if I told you that I’m gay?”

Proceed with 45 minutes of him vacillating between asking me questions about being gay, to him being a jerk about the “wasted time and effort” (though he never came out and said that), to him actually STILL trying to get me to sleep with him.  F’real. I finally made the choice for him, and took his ass home.

The next day, I was pissed. Why should I have to justify my sexuality to some dipshit 25-year old kid who only followed me home because he got a boner when I sat in his lap? Why do I even care so much? But most of all: how do I keep this from happening again? I talked to HR about it, and he advocated that I be as up front as possible if a guy starts to invest time in me.  And he also suggested that I dial down the flirtatiousness.  I’m not awful. But I think I have a sort of natural charm that just happens without me realizing it. Until I’m doing it. And then it’s too late to stop.

Saturday night. B2, Virgin Mary, and I are dolled up and ready to rock. If I do say so m’self, I looked pretty awesome. Jeans and rock graffitti Chucks, mohawk in a pomp, black chiffon corset topped with a killer leather vest, 50’s June Cleaver hot pink choker beads, and a huge turquoise ring. Oh yes.

 

What Would Jesus Do?

10 Sep

Excerpts from an Ambien text convo between Ninja and me about my marriage, prompted by a drunk text from Mr. Smith during which he tells me to stay away from him when I come home because he has been drinking and is horny. Then he proceeds to tell me his guitar is his only friend… and I should stay away from the house until he’s asleep.

Me: “You know what pisses me off most is that if *I* was the one getting wasted and acting this way, there’d be no end to the amount of shit I’d hear.”

Ninja: “How much longer can you deal with this?”

Me: “I don’t have a choice.”

Ninja: “I figured you’d say that. It makes me sad for you.”

Me: “What am I supposed to say?
Me: “Oh, I’ll just leave Mr. Smith.”

Ninja: “Where did that come from?”
Ninja: “Do you feel like you cheated on Mr. Smith?”

Me: “I feel like I could have been more communicative about what was about to happen and/or slowed things down with Fathead until I double-checked with Mr. Smith.”
Me: “I take full responsibility for under-communicating that part. But I never lied to Mr. Smith, and he always knew what was generally going on.”

Ninja: “Ok. And I never said you should leave Mr. Smith. I was just wondering how it’s possible for someone who doesn’t believe she is guilty of something like this.”

Me: “How someone “not guilty” can put up with this?”
Me. “Well, I’m still guilty for the demise of my relationship. Things I coulda/woulda/shoulda done, right? Hindsight’s 20/20 and all that.”

Ninja: “Okay. And I never said you should leave Mr. Smith. I just was wondering how it’s possible for you to constantly subject yourself to these phases of his. Man, carrying around that load must be getting kinda heavy. These phases of his, that ultimately punish you, when you don’t believe you cheated.”

Me: “I can’t subject myself any longer. That’s the problem.”
Me: “I’ve been trying to play nice, apologize, give him room to have feelings about it all… he thinks I cheated, so what matters other than how he feels? He’s the victim.”

Ninja: “But you said earlier that you don’t get to stop putting up with it. Is there a difference?”

Me: “Fuck that. I’m done.”
Me: “I don’t get to stop if I want things to work.”

Ninja: “Are you willing to sacrifice yourself day in and day out to make it work? I know a lot about martyrdom. It’s been my life. Trying to be Jesus is not a fulfilling life, believe me. The nails really start to hurt after a while and the cross is fucking heavy. Just so you know.”

Me: “I feel like I should not be laughing at that.”

Ninja: “And I’m probably going straight to hell for that one.”