I hope you have a Merry one.
Yes, even you.
Only a few days until Christmas.
I hope you have a Merry one.
Yes, even you.
I keep track of when I dated people based on what our fave song to fuck to was/is.
I can cross reference when that song was popular thereby giving me a rough time frame for when we were together.
Hi. I haven't seen you since 2008. How you doin?
Five years ago today I met the woman who would soon become my Step-wife.
I wasn’t planning to meet her that day, but she came to a play my kids were in with Xhusband – and upon the introduction I literally could not breathe. We had been divorced about 10 months.
In true NB fashion, I played it cool. I smiled. I shook hands.
I sat in the front row to get good pictures. They sat on the same row across the isle. My saving grace was that my dad was there that day. Dad and I are not close and he launched the nastiest divorce Houston’s north side had even seen at the time – the stuff of legend. Seriously, people still talk about it. So, he obviously knows how this stuff goes to some degree.
He was cool, too. He smiled. He shook hands.
The play started and I sat in the front row next to Dad. My camera was in my hands and I was facing forward, but I was frozen. Tears streamed quietly down my face. I was struggling to keep that smile. I knew Xhusband would find someone else one day, but I hadn’t thought about what it would be like to meet her.
At this point Dad, still facing forward, stretch his arm around my shoulders and squeezed my right shoulder as if to say “Hey, it’ll be ok. I’m here.” It helped. The tears stopped and I could focus on the kids, the play and taking pictures.
The next year, they got married and I have never been more thankful that I have a step-wife. My life would not be the same without her. She’s fun and funny and they seem to be truly in love. I am so happy they found each other. Most importantly, she loves my kids and they love her. And the most valuable thing she does for me is help Xhusband and I hear each other when we disagree - she moderates fairly and honestly.
We tell people we are one family in two houses and that is truly how we operate. We vacation together. We sit together at the kid’s games and go to school conferences all together. Even my Dad laughs at how well this has worked out. And I think back to his squeezing my shoulder. That’s all he did to tell me “things will be ok” and I was open to it. I mean, that's all one can do is be open to it. Otherwise you'll be miserable.
I saw something come across social media yesterday.
It stuck with me.
“You have to have courage to love somebody. Because you risk everything. Everything.” The quote is attributed to Maya Angelou but these days who knows if she really said that or not.
The words stuck with me because I’m am not courageous, apparently. And I know it.
It implies I can’t love somebody. I want to. But, I don’t think I can – not this way. Not in a way many people describe as “wholly, honestly, completely.”
As bad as it hurts to break up with someone without being so emotionally vulnerable, I can’t begin to think of how it feels to lose them when you’ve completely and totally bought in and turned over your heart to that relationship. It is risky.
Yes, I assume everyone will leave one day because no one has ever proven me wrong on that. No one goes into a relationship intending to leave, but...
I hate it, but I’m not willing to risk everything.
I tried to play it cool - like it didn't bother me - like I wasn't phased that he was leaving.
But when he hugged me I cried. I told him I'm happy for him, but that I'd miss him.
He held me tight and said softly "I love you, too. You can feel however you want to feel. I accept your humanity."
And somehow that made me feel a teeny, tiny, better.
My therapist often mentioned serendipity. She said that serendipity is when the universe brings good things to you by happy accidents and lucky encounters.
Today I was at the book store looking at the Classics. My eyes wandered over tomes such as “The Iliad,” “The Odyssey” and “The Histories.” Among the epics was a small pink book. The pink caught my eye first since the Classics were bound in navy, burgundy and gray. Then the title required me to pull it out and investigate - “Dirty Pretty Things” was beautifully scripted on the narrow spine.
The cover was light pink and felt like ultra suede. Soft and supple and smooth and I could wrap myself up in that material and take a nap on the beach - I have a thing for paper. The cover art was an interesting water color (my preferred medium) of a girl. She is sad.
I looked around to see if anyone had noticed what I had picked up. No one had. Why would they?
I opened and flipped through. Very short bursts of text centered and sometimes asymmetrical on one side of clean white pages. Poems. Statements. Questions. What is this?
I turn to the Introduction and as I read my face got hot, I felt butterflies in my stomach and I found it hard to breathe. This book is nothing more than the author penning his thoughts and memories about a past lover. When he explains the couple’s affinity for “The Little Prince” I thought “he is me” and I closed the book.
I looked hard at the book shelf. Why was this book here in this section among these big, old, monster-laden journeys? Perhaps because it’s his tragedy?
So many little things about this book spoke to me I felt it through my body. I knew I was supposed to find it and that nothing but a serendipitous chain of events got the book in front of me. And I was glad they had.
I’m not a book reader anymore so to find a book that literally compels me to take it home is a treat. The little pink book has already inspired and excited me. Thanks, serendipity.
2015 was a very good year – in spite of some really stressful things.
It was good because at the end of the day, I have my family, my country, my health and my God.
And with those things I can get through anything.
Telling myself that is actually what gets me through.
In my darkest days, I say it over and over and over.
It must work because I’m still here.
Angie is my friend.
I’ve written about her before on this blog – we have something particularly special.
She tells me everything. I tell her almost everything, because that’s how Nat operates, ya know.
I wish I could spend more time with her, but she lives in another state. We often day dream about all the things we’d do if we had time together.
We’d do our hair and nails, go shopping, have a glamorous lunch with cocktails and dine in the evening somewhere with excellent people-watching and cute boys we could flirt with. We’d smile, flip our hair and casually touch their arms as we giggle at whatever ridiculousness they talk about.
Although we’d immerse ourselves in the most wonderful “Girls Weekend” Angie would stand out among all the other women at the salons and boutiques. She’s very tall, her hands and shoes are bigger than most dress shops cater to and her Adam’s apple is conspicuous. But her heart is sweet and her intentions are good and she just wants to be herself – which is hard for her to do at home.
I care about her and love her and worry about her and want her to be content with herself and I will do everything in my power to help her feel that way – especially if it’s partying and drinking and looking at cute boys. =)
I don't know what it's like to be shy.
I understand the apprehension of going somewhere new and what it feels like to be the only person in the room that didn't walk in with a friend. But I don't understand what it feels like to be truly shy.
My daughter is shy. She is beautiful, talented and smart, but she is genuinely bashful. Many times throughout her life she has cried before getting out of the car when going somewhere new. She is on social media but almost never posts anything or checks to see what others have shared. Her most puzzling behavior is that she often blocks her friends in her phone when she feels they are texting her too much - she tells me she feels obligated to reply to texts and gets overwhelmed by some friends, so instead of asking them to stop or explaining that she doesn't text very much, she simply blocks them. Then her closest few friends call ME and ask ME to ask her questions and tell her things since they know they're on the BLOCKED list. I've explained that her closest friends love her enough to put up with this - but that not many other people will.
As she's turned from a child to a teen I've learned that you're born this way. Shy people don't grow out of it and it isn't a phase. You can offer all the coaching and encouragement in the world but you can't MAKE them unshy - I've tried.
I'm thankful I have a shy child. I've learned many things from her:
1. When you're not talking you're listening.
2. When you're not listening you're not connecting with people.
3. She watches every move every person in a room makes and thinks about why they are doing what they are doing then analyzes what they do next.
4. She's a great judge of character.
With myself and my son being quite outgoing personalities, it can be nice to have someone keep the calm in our house. Spending time with her REQUIRES me to slow down, unplug and focus - which ensures quality time is spent. And for that, I am grateful.
She will never tell you everything.