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“You’re pissing on the grand plan.” Ally said.
“What grand plan would that be?” I asked, rubbing sunscreen on her back. We’d just finished eating burnt hog dogs, that we agreed to call charred. She left me to tend the grill while she went inside to make her special blend of happy juice. It was a mistake. I forgot that I was supposed to be grilling and took a short nap instead.
I wanted to avoid a serious conversation about what she’d done, but could feel the discussion coming. The look on her face and the purposefulness of her steps told me that the invite to come over for a cookout, sunbathing and drinking happy juice by the pool was not all for fun.
“The grand plan, Kitten is that we grow up, and we realize that life is about compromise and sometimes we have to suffer through our compromises. Life is suffering,” She said
“My life is not suffering. If that’s the grand plan, I’m not playing,” I said.
She chuckled. “You don’t have a choice,”
"I think I do,” I said.
She stared at me for a long while. I stared back, we held our respective positions like prized fighters in a ring. Ally and I have proven over our long friendship that we can disagree with each other and still maintain a solid friendship built on respect and loyalty.
“You think I’m weak for not going through with the divorce, don’t you?”
“I don’t think anything. I just don’t understand your decision,” I said. “I don’t understand why you feel that you need to suffer through an abusive relationship and justify your suffering as the “debt” that you owe for your life. What the fuck kind of logic is that?” I asked touching the latest bruise. I could still see the imprint of a finger on her arm where he grabbed her.
“I saw judgment all over your face when I told you that I was calling off the divorce,”
I paused. I’ve been told that I should never play poker. I wear my thoughts on my face like a laced curtain. Every emotion etches patterns into my features - lingers long enough to expose me before finding a safe place to hide.
“You saw confusion,” I said. “At the end of the day, the decisions that you make about your life are yours,"
“Look around you, Kit, what you want, doesn’t exist. Your head is always in the clouds, despite all the shit that happened to you in the last few years. You still believe in love and passion and dreams and all that nonsense,”
“I would rather live and die an explorer of love and passion and dreams than someone who has accepted suffering as a birth-right,” I said.
“What about what happened to you with Thorr and Caesar and Thomas and CX?”
“I found the silver lining in all of it,”
“Life is not a joke,” She said.
“Life is full of humor, Ally. You just have to find the punch line,”
What is the grand plan? I don’t know. I do know that I see too many people like Ally who no longer dream nor do they pursue the life they wanted to live or the kind of man they wanted to marry or that happiness is a reasonable expectation.
I figured that if I were given a life that I didn’t ask for, I should take all the pleasures that I can - drink from it like a bee sucks the nectar from a flower to make honey. It’s not as if we don’t know our destination.
I live to laugh and fuck and will hold tightly the innocence with which I was born, and protect as if my life depends on it, the imagination that makes me believe in impossible things. I cannot be convinced to accept despondency and misery as the penance that I should pay for my life.
She didn’t say anything for a long time. “When I was a kid, I had a super-woman costume. I used to wear it all the time even when it wasn’t Halloween. I really believed that I could fly. What do you think would happen to us if we go out in public in a cape at our age?”
“We’d be put on medication and would probably be sent to a mental institution. The story would be that we've lost touch with reality when in truth it's reality that has lost touch with us,” I said.
Do you know how silly that was?”
“You weren’t silly. You had imagination. The tragedy is that you no longer believe in your greatness. You've got to bring that little girl back to life,” I said.
She smiled, "She's long gone, Kit,"
"Then who filed for divorce?" I asked.
"Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark, in the hopeless swamps of the approximate, the not-quite, the not-yet, the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish, in lonely frustration for the life you deserved, but have never been able to reach. Check your road and the nature of your battle. The world you desired can be won. It exists, it is real, it is possible, it is yours."
The thing about turning a corner ...you never know what you will find.
I met Sullivan (Sully) many years ago at a company where we both worked. I was a sales consultant. He was a sales leader. My time there was short. I discovered that I am unmanageable and cannot work for people that I do not respect. My boss, I was certain had a drug problem – and with far less experience than I, we soon realized that we were not going to work out. I don’t play well with people who wants to restrict my life.
This was also where I learned the difference between management and leadership, and on which side of the fence I belonged. Just as I was unmanageable, I hated even more the idea of managing people’s lives. I had no desire to tell anyone what time they should show up to work, leave, have lunch....and absolutely no desire to have people peering at me from eyes masked with quiet resentment. No. After listening to a training session in which Sully who was just hired, spoke about being a leader instead of a manager, I knew I liked something about him. “The task of the leader is to get his people from where they are to where they have not been.” He quoted Henry A. Kissinger.
Was there an instant when our eyes met and a pact made to see each other again, I don’t recall. Many years later, he told me there was that moment.
The speech was the last thing I remembered of Sully. Soon after, in a Monday meeting, the regional manager announced that he didn’t care about our families, he only cared about making money. I left.
Few months later, I received a text from Sully asking if I would like to go out for a drink. I responded kindly with a thanks, but no thanks and gave whatever reason I had at the time. Since I'd never spoken to him, I was certain that I did not give him my number.
Throughout the years, I received calls and text messages from Sully still wanting to go out for a drink - some came during my courtship with Kenny, a time in my life when no other man stood a chance. Kenny’s lips, the only lips I wanted to taste. Kenny’s smile - his touch, the sight of him was all I cared about.
Few weeks ago, I received another text, “When can we have that drink you owe me?”
I was about to send my usual thanks, but no thanks response when I paused… who was this man that for so many years and after all the rejections, keeps asking?
“I’m ready,” I wrote. “Provide me with a list of available days and times,”
He responded immediately.
The meeting that started years ago completed its cycle. The speaker found the woman in the room who caught his attention and held it. Sully greeted me with open arms and a big smile – arms that I hesitated walking into because I didn’t know them, yet when he wrapped them around me, there was comfort.
“I’ve been waiting a long time for this,” He said, the smile stretching into what seemed like eternity across his face. “I can’t believe you’re finally here,”
“How did you get my number?” I asked the question that I've been wondering since he first contacted me.
“I stole it from your files when you quit,” he said.
And so, an evening of getting to know you began. I am constantly reminded that there’s a balance to life like the rise and fall of the sea. Some men get drunk and ask for a blow-job on a first date, some behave like a gentleman and take you for evening strolls in the park, and tells silly stories just to hear you laugh.
I have no idea what Sully will come to mean in my life – that does not matter right now. There is a spark of curiosity and I’m going to see where it goes. I still have seven of my nine lives left.
Thomas looked at me for a long time through half-closed eyelids trying to figure out if I were another hallucination. I was the last person he expected to see.
“Kit, I think I’m at the end of my road,” he said after awhile in which he may have decided that it doesn't matter if I were real. His body looked frail against the white sheets in the hospital bed in which he’d spent the last three days in and out of consciousness.
His body is failing from a lifetime of self-inflicted wounds.
He started having seizures about a year ago. And is riddled with a host of other problems, heart, lungs…. He's been told that one of the seizures will kill him. Every time I get a call that he has another episode, I show up knowing that it may be his last. “I want to be there,” I told Alan.
“Why?” he asked.
Thomas was once my husband and he will forever be Thorr’s father. The question is not why? It’s why not?
I’ve been writing a lot about unburdening myself of the people in my life who causes conflict and misery. Thomas is on the list. I carried him on my back for many years –dragged around the baggage he collected throughout his life as if they were my burdens to bear. When you get too close to damaged people who have not learned to heal themselves, you become part of their destructive cycle – unless you step away and lay them down. I divorced him many years ago, but I took his troubles with me.
That's no longer the case. I re-wrote the script of the life we planned with the life we were given. And when I stepped away from the wreckage, I had a view of Thomas’s life from a perspective that I have never seen before, and I have formed new appreciation, understanding and compassion for the man.
There is a great line delivered in Citizen Cane, by Philip Van Zandt who played Mr. Rawlson, “It isn't enough to tell us what a man did. You've got to tell us who he was.”
I have written about what Thomas did, but not enough about Thomas. He is a brilliant man with a soft heart. It’s what drew me to him. He is a gifted architect and a visionary. Throughout our marriage, I watched him built himself up like the exquisite homes he designed, and tore himself down as one would an old decrepit home with a cracked foundation.
You see, Thomas is also very troubled – that’s also what drew me to him. I have a weakness for broken people. I want to fix them. I’ve had to learn that I cannot pick up every bird with a broken wing that I come across and bring them home. Some are beyond my power to heal.
Thomas was born in an abusive home. His father was an alcoholic who physically and verbally abused the family until he died of a heart attack. But the family did not heal.
Thomas’s descent into drug addiction started when he was sixteen and continued throughout his life. He tried countless times to get help before and after I came along. He was clean when I met him, but he went back to using heroin. I couldn’t save him. I took Thorr and left.
He wandered through life like a lost soul. He slept on the street when he had a home and family. He kept poking himself to see how much he could bleed. He was like a one-legged man trying to make his way up a hill. He meant to keep his promises, but broke them.
A man’s life is not destined for destruction because he had a bad childhood. But neither can he build a house on a foundation made of sand. No matter how big and beautiful a house may be, if the structure is unstable, it will fall. Thomas knew that he had a cracked foundation, but did not make the connection that he, like the houses he designed and built, he had to strengthen his foundation before he could build on it.
There is no more anger or hatred in me about Thomas’s struggles with drug addiction, his abandonment of Thorr and our failed marriage. I expected love from a man who did not know love, protection from a little boy trying to find a safe corner in which to hide. He watched his mother beaten bloody time and again and could not help her.
Thomas could not give me what he does not have. He did not set out to intentionally hurt me – I got hurt because I tried to live in a house with a cracked foundation that could not sustain me.
There is so much that I did not understand.
As I sat by his side and read him Emily Dickinson’s, After Great Pain, A Formal feeling Comes. I think about the years long gone, and memories that I thought long dead burst into life - two people starry eyed and full of hope heading for an unknown future – riding elephants in Koh Samui, Thailand, spending quiet evenings by the crackling fireplace on wintry evenings, bringing Thorr home from the hospital…and I smiled a little through the sadness.
When I applied to the (MSWC) Masters Science Written Communication program, I was asked to write an essay explaining why I wanted a Masters degree in writing.
I recently came across the article, and it tells a story. I don't question why I do a lot of things that I do anymore. I listen to, and trust my intuition. The pieces though I don't always understand them, eventually falls into place.
One of my professors once asked, "Kitten, do you have a special place where you go to write?"
I told her that sometimes I write in bed which is a bad idea because I often fall asleep. Other times I write in the loft that overlooks my balcony and gives me a breath-taking view of the trees that lines the property.
I didn't tell her about the other place...the place inside where I can disappear for hours, shut out the world and bring everything that's inside out.
I was given 45 minutes to write the below article. It came from the place inside.
I was the little geek girl who never went anywhere without her notebook, and would disappear for hours to read and get lost in her head. Of my five sisters, I was the peculiar one who didn’t say much and had bigger than life ideas that left the people around me silent.
My journey to this point in my life in which I have decided to give in to my passion for writing and chase my dream wherever it may take me, hasn’t been easy. Like many, my life took a detour. I got married when I was too young to understand commitment – and became a mother when I was too young to understand the level of responsible involved in shaping a life. I was then, but I am no longer surprised that my marriage fell apart and I became a single mother who still needed mothering.
No. My journey hasn’t been easy. I had to grow up and that meant setting aside my notebooks, get out my head, and abandon my dreams if I were to survive. "How are you going to make enough money to support yourself? How in the world are you going to raise your son on dreams?"
I remembered staring at my mother and could not answer her questions.
So I grew up. I got several jobs, some barely paid the bills, and sometimes I cried myself to sleep because that’s what grown-ups do when the world becomes too heavy to bear. And then we go to sleep and wake up again, and it’s a new day with a lot of the same only there’s always a chance that it is going to be different. And even if it isn’t, we sell ourselves on hope.
I lived that life for many years searching for something to fill the void. I can’t say that I was unhappy, but neither was I fulfilled. I became very good at doing a job that I didn’t like, but it paid the bills and sometimes I splurged on expensive shoes - and I raised my son. That was my reward.
I would have lived a lifetime unfulfilled had the stories inside me kept silent. They bleated and roared and gnawed at me like an itch that you cannot scratch because it is inside you – the very blood that runs through your veins and the millions of cells from which you are made.
My passion felt like pain and only when I picked up my pen and paper and resurrected the life I’d buried could I rest.
I pretended to be a saleswoman - I wore different masks and played different roles, but I could not escape myself. The time came when the part of me that I abandoned came knocking on my door and would not stop until I let me back in.
It took me a while, but here I am - back on the trail that I abandoned many years ago. I now know that to live a full life, I have to embrace the person I was born to be.
I am here because I am a writer.
I got into the program.
I text and email CX as I do every Friday evening on my weekends with Caesar. I have not spoken to him since the day our custody war concluded. I can’t imagine a time when I will be able to stand across from him – I find it impossible to look at him – I am still trying to put into words the creature I see … maybe one day.
He did not respond to my text or my email.
I received a call from Caesar, that CX would not be dropping him off because he wanted to take him to a Memorial Day parade, but would drop him off on Saturday around 3:30pm. There is a court order where I'm schedule with Caesar Friday evening, but I guess this doesn't matter.
At 2:47pm Saturday, I received a text from CX that he can drop off Caesar at 3pm. Yes… twelve minutes notice for a twenty-five, thirty minute drive as if I’m hanging out in the clouds and can drop in from the sky at a moment’s notice.
I was on my way to the drop-off point with my computer, prepared for a long wait, thinking that if nothing else, I could get some school work done while I waited. This is life with CX. I deal with these situations by expecting the worst, and having a back-up plan.
At 3:04, I received a text from Caesar (who was obviously tasked with communicating for CX) that I should wait 45 minutes, that they left, but CX had to stop at Ikea.
At 4:10, I was still waiting. I called Caesar. His voice cackled with frustration – “Mom, I have no idea what’s going on, we’re still at Ikea,”
At this point, I had no idea when or if they would show up.
At 5:48pm, I still have not heard from CX. I emailed him that I was heading back home.
I no longer wonder why he functions like this…the question gets lost in the wind.
This is a case of “I’m going to get you” for the latest situation where I notified the organizer of the Youth Marine Program that Caesar is diagnosed with Thalassemia trait and should get doctor’s authorization to participate in a week-long camping trip (in the woods) that CX wanted to send him. Here they do military drills and other physical training during which time Caesar was to have no parental contact.
The organizer didn’t seem to have any idea that Caesar carried the Thalassemia trait.
Last year when I found out that CX sent Caesar to the camp for a week, I asked him to provide documentation that he’d received doctor’s clearance. He did not respond.
This time, he sent me an email from an address that does not have his name on it, telling me to stop telling ‘people’ that Caesar has a blood disorder and threatened to take me to court. I replied, adding the email accounts that does have his name and copied the Youth Marine organizer, “Good. Let’s go back to court so that you will be forced get doctor’s authorization,”
He did not respond.
After 7pm, I received another call from Caesar that they were on their way. I didn’t move until I got confirmation that they were actually at the meeting point.
It should’ve been a simple process. We meet at the agreed time, Caesar gets out of his car and gets into mine and we go on our way. I wish the situation were different, but it’s not – so I adapt until the years take us to a time when Caesar will be able to travel on his own.
I disconnected to protect myself from his chaos. I completed my homework and worked on what will be my masterpiece.
The game where he creates conflict and misery in my world is over. He doesn’t get that I have stopped playing and has become a spectator of his tragic life, watching him play against himself.
Mark didn’t lose my number. He called.
I hadn’t logged his contact in my phone and answered the call thinking that it was someone else.
Eric had already cursed him out. I didn't care enough to be emotional about it.
“I can’t apologize enough for my behavior,” he began in a rush as if he were trying to get the words out before time ran out. “I don’t know what I was thinking to suggest that you give me a blow-job. I was out of line. I was drunk. Can we scratch and start over?”
“No,” I said. ”I don’t date frogs,”
He chuckled. “You think that I’m a frog?”
“Yes,” I said.
“I am a man who acted like a frog,” he said. “Haven’t you seen the movie about the frog who was really a prince?”
“The frog didn’t ask the princess for a blow-job on their first blind date. If he had, he may never have received the kiss that restored him to his former self,”
“I drank too much,” he said.
“That’s an excuse that I am not willing to accept,” I said.
“So that’s it?"
“Yes. Good-bye and good luck to you,” I said.
Henri Bergson said, “The eye sees only what the mind is prepared to comprehend.”
There was a time… when I was younger when that was true. I surrendered to my wild, restless heart and followed it anywhere. I may have brushed off a man asking for a blowjob on a first date as frivolous. I may have even brushed aside him drinking too much and losing control of himself as insignificant. Those days are no more.
These are significant things. They are warning flags – a snapshot of a person's character. I can look back into my past and collect the warning signals that I ignored. Now, when you tell me who you are, I believe you – the first time.
Yes. Given enough time, we reveal our true nature. If a man on a first date cannot control himself when he should be trying to make an impression, how will he behave when there is no reason for him to want to make an impression?
I still have a young hopeful heart, but logic is never far behind.
There are some things for which it's one strike and you’re out. I have no desire to waste my valuable time on foolish men.
"The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior."
My approach to dating is a lot different than it used to be. I go about them now as I would a job interview, collecting information to see if the job meets the requirements that would make me want to go back for a second. If not, I thank the interviewer for his or her time and on my way I go for the next opportunity.
But because we all know to put our best foot forward, it is not always easy to know what the real deal is until the second or even the third date – if we are lucky enough, sometimes we do.
When giving dating advise to my friends and sisters, I tell them to keep an open mind and have fun. Don’t go in with preconceived ideas and expectations thinking that he might be your husband or that he will be good for your children to be around.
Preconceived ideas are dangerous. They work like a smoke-screen that reflects your hopes and blinds you to the reality of what may be clear signs that this is not a good fit for you.
Since I am not looking for a husband or a father figure for my children, and since I am quite content to sit in the quiet of my mind and roll with the memories that I have chosen to keep me company - and since my heart still belongs to another, and I play with myself when I am horny – since I have no expectation than the openness for a new experience, it’s hard to be disappointed in anything that may occur on a date. I am simply on an adventure, fully aware that I may have to kiss some frogs along the way.
“Mark said that you walked out on him,” Eric called me few minutes after I walked out on Mark. “What happened, Kitten? I thought that you were serious about getting back out there,”
“What did he tell you?” I asked.
“He said that you were having a good time. He really likes you. Said you hit it off – thinks you’re funny…”
“Wait…he thinks that I’m funny?”
“Yeah. I thought that was kind of strange, because you’re not funny, distant-in-weird-way, but not funny,”
I giggled. “What else did he tell you?”
“He said that everything was going great then you got mad at him over something, he didn’t say what, and that you took your uppity self and left and told him to lose your number,”
“Did he tell you that he asked me for a blow-job?”
“A blowjob. Your fuck-tard friend asked me for a blow-job,”
He was silent for the longest time. “Why would he do such a thing?”
“Because he’s a fuck-tard,” I said.
“That's not even a word. Do you want me to come and get you?”
“No. I drove,”
“I’m sorry, Kit. We work together. He seemed like a nice guy,”
I understand why Eric was confused. I did not see the blow-job request coming. Dinner was pleasant enough. Conversation flowed easily. He was even a little bit funny –
Since it was warm, we sat on the patio and I watched him eat cake. He had three drinks with dinner that I thought was a bit much and seemed a bit flushed.
And between bites of chocolate cake, he said, “So, Kitten, since we hit it off so well, do you want to go to my place and make out and you can give me a blow-job. And I’ll do to you whatever you want me to do to you. I’ve been thinking about those sexy lips all night,”
I stared at him. “You don’t stand a chance of ever getting a blow-job from me,” I said. “Please lose my number,”
And just like that…I was gone.
“Kitten, did I say something wrong?” he called after me. “Kitten,”
Frogs…sometimes they show up disguised as men. But a frog cannot help but croak. That is its nature.
I studied myself in the mirror. Dark eyes peered through lashes made long and exotic with jet-black mascara.
Dressed in classic white shirt, jeans and high heels, I looked refreshing, refined, and certain of every step. I’ve always taken care of my body. It’s my home and letting myself go has never been an option. That leads to depression – it’s such a nasty feeling to not feel good about yourself – to hide from the mirror.
You can do this. I told myself. The this was meeting a man for drinks at the restaurant where I sometimes go with Allan. My friend Eric who looked horrified when I told him that I could not get my mind wrapped around being touched by anyone arranged the blind date. He feared that I would never get off my island. His fear was baseless. I did not tell him about my erotic masturbating fantasies, but I must admit, it’s a lot easier to have someone do the leg-work rather than me putting myself out there. My desire to hunt is lacking and I cannot get back in the game unless I get back in the game. I get it.
I told him not to expect anything. You see, I am quite full of myself. My standards are high and I do not intend to lower them. I reminded him of the time that Ally set me up with a man who’d been in jail and advised him against it.
Let’s start with intelligence. That is my number one criteria. I like geeks. Bulging muscles and a tight ass does nothing for me if you don’t have intelligence to go with it. Seduce my mind and you’ve got me.
If a man is looking for a clubbing, bar chick who uses drugs and call it a party, I’m not his girl. I am very low keyed. I enjoy travel, art, strolls in the park, movies, literature, philosophical discussions and independent thinking. I am decisive, and assertive and some men do not like that in women – I am not going to change.
“Stop talking,” Eric said. “How long have I known you?”
“Many moons,” I said. “I’ve known Ally longer than you and she set me up with a guy who spent time in jail for murder,”
He chuckled. “That was really bad. I wouldn’t do that,” he said.
“I hope not,” I said.
I turned away from the mirror and dived off my island, prepared for an icy greeting to force me back to my safe haven. Instead, it was warm and encouraging like a child stepping into a world that exists only in her imagination.
I saw my blind date sitting in a corner. I knew what he looked like from the picture that Eric showed me on his Iphone. My heart skipped a beat or two. His was not the face I wanted to see, but he was the one waiting for me. I was not the only one on a new adventure. He stood when I approached. The smile stretched across his face. He bent his head to place a kiss on my cheek and I tip-toed to accept it.
"Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding."
“What does this mean to you?” I asked Ally, tracing with my fingertips the butterfly on her shoulder-blade, one wing red the other blue.
“I got caught up in the fad,” she said. “Years ago everybody and their dog was getting a butterfly tattoo,”
I don’t have a butterfly tattoo. I have an open book on my leg with a feathered pen dipped in ink. It covers the child-hood burn mark that when no one was looking, I mounted the motorcycle that my cousin had just vacated and the muffler burned me.
The open book with its blank pages is a personal reminder that there will always be new chapters in my life, and I should be ready to write them.
As I stared at the butterfly tattoo, I could not stop thinking about its transformation, and mine.
I deem the last few years as the most horrific times of my life – yet they are also the most life changing, defining years of my life. I realized something…just as we have it in us to create change - sometimes change comes along and creates us.
I can recall laying on the couch feeling like a burnt-down house. Now and again, among the ash and coal, I found fragments of my former life in a burnt picture frame that once held the smiling faces of my family - the silver candle-holder burnt black, changed but not destroyed – one foot of a three-hundred dollar pair of high heels.
My arms were empty of Caesar and the ache and void felt like fire in my bones. Thorr was raging through life, and my heart was broken into such tiny pieces that when I tried to pick them up they trickled like sand through my fingers. Friedrich Nietzsche said, “If you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.” I gazed into the abyss and the abyss gazed back at me as if to say what the fuck are you looking at?
I went to a dark, but warm place inside myself and slept through the fevers that drained my body and the nightmares that ravaged my mind. And she kept watch over me – my inner child, the healer who fixes me when I am broken.
When I awakened, I felt the way a caterpillar must when emerged from the cocoon with the realization that the cocoon was not death, but transformation. And its world once narrow in scope had expanded and full of new horizons. She now has mountains, and ocean and sky – she can fly.
That’s what I feel like these days… as if I went through a transformation and have been injected with clarity. My world is so vast now that the emotions that once crippled me... the anger and hatred of those who poisoned the well from which I drank, the broken system, mask wearers, abusers, deceivers, stone throwers are no more than dust particles barely clinging to life. Their only relevance is what I give them.
So much of what I thought mattered, just does not matter at all.
Does a caterpillar know that she will one day grow wings? I think that life unfolds like a rosebud, one layer at a time. And if we can see the patterns and join the flow, a truly remarkable journey is revealed.
“We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.” ~Maya Angelou~
It is not fear of the unknown that keeps me on my island. I will jump off a cliff just to see if I will die. The unknown to me is a place where treasures are found and where our greatest journeys lie IF we are brave enough to go on the adventure.
If the last few years taught me anything, it’s that there is no reason for me to fear the unknown. I have within me kick-ass resilience and I'm not easily destroyed. In the words of Maya Angelou, “It is this belief in a power larger than myself and other than myself which allows me to venture into the unknown and even the unknowable.”
When I expressed to my father that I am afraid of getting back into the dating game, for some of my choices have not been sound, he brushed aside my concern as one would a gnat.
“Kitten, most of your choices have been sound and you are a long way from the woman you used to be,”
No. I am not afraid of the unknown. There are moments when the thrill of it rages through me and I can’t wait to discover what new adventure awaits.
Out there is the man, perhaps several for whom I will remove my steel cloak so that he may explore all that I am – fully aware that he may tear out my heart and stomp on it, but I will have decided that he is worth the risk. Yes, I have moments when I long for the taste of a first kiss, standing naked and trembling beneath a man’s gaze as he stirs we with his fingertips – on my knees with him between my lips - penetrated.
I am not afraid of the unknown...but life has taught me that sometimes it's necessary to take careful steps – to look both ways before I run into the street so that I don’t get hit by a truck. It’s no fun getting hit by a truck and having to get back up.
My body is alive with suppressed yearnings - it is my heart that I cannot convince to let go. It is still loyal and my memories haunt me. The disconnect between my body and my heart scares me.
“Someday you're gonna look back on this moment of your life as such a sweet time of grieving. You'll see that you were in mourning and your heart was broken, but your life was changing...”
― Elizabeth Gilbert