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Friday, December 25, 2015

Convo with Lane

Please help me to decipher this. I've been agonizing over it for the last several hours, and I know my tendency to over analyze, I just need other opinions/interpretations so I can get my head right before he gets here. Also, I don't know why the middle section is smaller...sorry lol. Oh, and I'd had like a whole bottle of wine when we had this conversation. He wasn't entirely sober either. I like him. I want...I dunno. I want possibilities. I wanna hope that this can be something more, but I don't want to set myself up for disappointment. And I also want this to be fun! I don't wanna be stressing out over this the whole time he is here. HELP MEEEEE!!!! I'm desperate. Seriously.


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

It's Happening

It's really happening. Lane bought a plane ticket. He's coming here, he's staying with me, and he's going out with me and my friends for NYE. I'm so excited I can barely contain myself, but I'm also really nervous, because I feel like I'm falling for him, and I don't know that I can go the whole weekend of him being here without telling him how I feel. And I don't think he'll go for the long distance thing. ((Sigh)). I mean I'm not a fan of long distance relationships either, but there's just something about him... He's the exception. It would be worth it I think. Ughhh...the excitement plus the anticipation, plus my nerves make for a real Molotov cocktail of feelings.
Speaking of feelings, I've been trying to get my depression/anxiety issues under control. I finally went to see a doctor about my panic attacks and I was diagnosed with acute anxiety disorder and depression. Not much of a surprise I guess. Although I'm not exactly sure where the anxiety is coming from. I mean my life in general is kind of up and down, and I do have a lot of stress, but I was always able to manage it before. But it was time for me to face the fact that I was no longer managing it, and I needed help. So now I'm on medication, and it's helping, I guess. It's just a bit of an adjustment. And hopefully I'll get back on track soon.
I realized there's a lot of stuff I haven't written about on here yet, like my roommate for example. I've had 2 since moving to NOLA actually. The first one was Tom. And that was AWFUL. He was a nice guy, and cool, but a horrible roommate. The last straw was when he brought some chick home, she stayed here for 4 days, he never even introduced me to her, and then he had sex with her with his bedroom door WIDE OPEN. His room opens directly to the living room. I live in a double shotgun house, there are no hallways. And it was only like 10 o'clock!! Ughh. That was the last straw for me. There were tons of other awful situations living with him, but that one definitely took the cake. I talked to my mom/landlord about it and immediately started looking for a new roomie.
So now I live with Jen. She's a little weird, and not very girly like I am, and she smokes (which I hate, but she does it outside), but surprisingly, we get along great! I love living with her! We're actually like...friends! And she's an amazing cook, and loves making dinner for us, so that's also a plus. The only shitty thing about it (besides the smoking) is her little yappy, needy dog. He doesn't like anybody but her, he whines and howls loudly every time she leaves, he's always shitting and pissing on my side of the house and he bit me once, pretty bad. I seriously never thought it was possible to hate a dog, but I really hate hers. But she's been living here since the beginning of September, so we've spent a lot of that time figuring out how to make living with her dog manageable. And it's getting better. She also has a really nice boyfriend who comes over every other weekend and fixes stuff and does yard work lol. So, another perk of living with Jen.

Anyway, that's about all that's going on with me right now. I just spend like 75% of every day thinking about Lane. Ugh... It's been so long since I've been this way about a guy that it really scares me.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Conflicted

A while back I reminded all of you about Lane, a guy I met and briefly dated in Chicago. We got back in touch a little over a year ago, and have stayed in touch ever since, even though we haven't actually seen each other. We talk all the time! I mean actually talk, not text. We FaceTime at least once a week, and text almost every day. We've become pretty good friends I'd say, but I'm still in this same predicament. Am I being stupid? Is it pointless to continue this? I would be willing to commit to a relationship with him at this point IF we saw each other and things were as great in person as they are now, and IF he was willing to give it a shot, of course. I haven't told any of this to him though because I'm not sure if he feels the same way, and I don't wanna scare him off. He did talk about coming to NOLA for New Year's Eve this year, and he said a couple of his friends were down for the trip, but that was like 2 or 3 weeks ago, and he hasn't brought it up again since. ((Sigh)) I just feel like the more we talk, and the more we get to know each other, the more comfortable I get with him, and the more I depend on him, and the more I like him. And I don't want to develop strong feelings for him if there's no possibility of a relationship or anything. I'm no longer interested in just having flings with people. This is just getting so frustrating! I don't know what to do! Do I try to bring it up over the phone and sort of feel him out, or do I wait and see if he ends up coming down here for NYE? And if he does come, and there are fireworks, do I bring it up then, or wait and see what happens? And if he doesn't come, do I just keep on with this indefinite slightly more than friends friendship or what?? I wonder if he ever thinks about this kinda stuff. I doubt it. Ugh...

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Young Love

Quick note: Sophie is my sister. Like, my actual biological little sister. I think someone may have been confused...?

Anyway, I just spent the last several hours reading through/sorting my old journals from 1997-2004. And WOW. I didn't mean to get so absorbed but I couldn't help it. I was so different then. I felt things so intensely! A first kiss was such a wonderful, monumental thing! I got butterflies (the good kind!) thinking about a guy, waiting for him to call. Actually CALL, not text! I wish it was still that way. Although I haven't had a first kiss in so long I don't even like to think about it. And the guys! OMG, in 2003, I literally had like 5 guys I was dating at one time. And I wasn't even sleeping with any of them! I have no fucking clue how I managed that. But Jesus... apparently those 5 guys were meant to last me the rest of my life, cuz I can't even manage to get a date nowadays. This year has been really rough. I've been having severe anxiety, and I haven't been able to pinpoint exactly why, but I finally went to see a psychiatrist. The panic attacks were debilitating and becoming so frequent, I was afraid to leave the house sometimes. ((Sigh)) Now I feel like a Beverly Hills Real House Wife with my Xanax and my Prozac...ugh. But honestly, it's been a week since I've been medicated and only one panic attack. So I guess the drugs are working.
God, I can't stop thinking about those journals... My junior year of high school I fell in love with this guy. He was the guy next door, basically. He had always liked me, but he was kind of your typical bad boy, so I resisted him. He smoked and he drank, but he was also a Southern gentleman in a way. Very polite and respectful to adults, and charming, and deep down a good boy. He just had a lot of problems back then. He joined the Navy right out of high school, and it wasn't till he'd gone that I realized how much I cared about him. We became really close for a while. I would write him letters, and he would call me and we'd talk for hours, late into the night. But he was an alcoholic, and always getting into some kind of trouble because of that. We actually never dated, but we shared a few really good kisses. And I had an intense year of back and forth with him, long distance. Back then, the war on Iraq had just begun, and things in the military were dire, and dangerous, and I was always worrying about him. But then he would come home for Christmas, or just for a random, spur of the moment weekend visit, and I would be so happy to see him! And we'd play, and talk, and share stories. And we'd always dance. He taught me how to Texas Two Step at the local dance hall. He loved to dance. And I'd always give him an innocent kiss on the cheek, and he'd blush, and then ask permission to kiss me. And usually I would let him. But then he would leave again, and I'd cry and cry. I shed a lot of tears over that guy. I really was in love with him. And he loved me too, in his own way. He wanted me, but he just...didn't know how to love me really. He knew he couldn't give me what I needed or what I deserved, and in the end, I guess it just wasn't meant to be. But I remember so much about our time together so vividly that reading about it really puts me right back there, ya know? I can feel it all again. I don't have that experience with anyone else I've ever dated really. At least not in a positive way. Thinking about it makes me happy, and it makes me sad. Happy that I got to experience something like that, in that way. So romantic and intense, yet also so innocent. But sad, because I'm alone now, and I don't know if I'll ever have anything that even comes close to that again. That feeling of pure abandon... Young Love.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

The Sophie Thing

I didn't speak to Sophie for about 3 weeks. I needed time to think, and my wounds were still smarting, so I needed time to heal. But healing wasn't on the agenda, because I couldn't get past the W's of it all. WHY did she do it? WHAT was she thinking? HoW could she do something like that to me? WHO is this person, really??
And I knew the only person who could give me those answers was Sophie, but I just wasn't ready to reach out to her. She tried, half-heartedly, to talk to me, through Facebook and emails, I just didn't respond, and she didn't force the issue. She obviously knew I was still upset, and now that we weren't being practically forced to spend every hour of every day together, I no longer needed to make the best of the situation. So maybe she was worried, I don't know. But finally, I reached out to her, via email.

Me, on July 5:

Hi Sister.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed or not, but I’ve been sorta keeping my distance from you over the last couple weeks because I’ve been thinking and trying to figure out why the whole situation in Belize is still bothering me. Because it is. I know you apologized, and I have forgiven you, but it still hurts what you did. I guess I feel like I don’t really know you as well I thought, because the person I know you to be knows me better than anyone, and knows how much I value loyalty in my relationships. And that person would know how much what you did would hurt me. Not because of the guy, because it’s me. I’m your sister. I know you were drunk, and that was obviously a contributing factor, but it’s not a reason. It’s not a good enough explanation to me for why you would do something like that. I want to know WHY you did it. Did you think about my feelings at all?? Did it ever occur to you when you noticed I was gone, why I may have left? Did you even NOTICE that I was gone?? And as much as I’ve been thinking about it and trying to figure it out, I can only come to the conclusion that I don’t really know you that well anymore. I guess I just don’t get what could motivate you to commit a betrayal like that so flippantly, without even thinking of my feelings AT ALL. Most of the time, you play the role of the older sibling, and I let you, because it’s your nature, and because I’ve never thought of myself as the responsible, role-model type. But there are some things I am wiser about than you, believe it or not.  I’m your big sister, and I have loved you, respected you, cherished you, and rejoiced in our relationship because I know it’s a rare and valuable thing. Every time I talk to Jenna, I’m reminded how special it is to have a sister that is also a best friend. So as your sister, and best friend, I want you to know this stuff. And I need an explanation from you.
You’ve changed a lot over the past couple years, and some of the choices you’ve made in your life have stood out in particular, as evidence of that change. And I think I’ve always been supportive, and adaptive to your lifestyle, or at least I really tried, even when I didn’t think it was right for you (e.g. the polyamorous thing). But I was always sure that deep down you were the same person. I never felt like you were a stranger to me. But the time I spent with you on the trip is making me wonder if you’re going through something. I don’t know, some sort of minor identity or life path crisis? I could just be reading into it too much. Maybe I’m the one having the crisis because I feel like the sanctity of OUR relationship has been violated. But I saw in you a shade of a person you used to be a long time ago; a person I thought you’d grown out of. That popular girl who constantly craves and needs the physical attention of the men around her. I couldn’t reconcile it at first, but then it occurred to me that I felt like I was in 8th grade again. That dorky reject with the popular younger sister, who has a new boyfriend every week. That night you made me feel like that girl again. Like a hovering, unwanted presence. And I don't want you to think I'm just sitting here judging you, because I'm not. I’m just trying to understand what is, or was, going on with you, if anything. 


Love,


Sister




Sophie, on July 5:

Hi Sister,

Thanks for your email and for expressing more about what's been going on internally for you. I have noticed that you've been keeping your distance, and I wasn't exactly sure how to respond to it. I figured it might be something related to what happened on your trip, but I wasn't sure if you just needed time, or if should do something or say something. Anyway, I am grateful that you reached out to me.

There are a lot of questions in your email, and I will try my best to not leave anything unanswered, but I think the key issue here is that you feel like I've changed as a person and that scares you because you feel like you don't know me anymore. I think that I have definitely changed, over the past year - but not in ways that were reflected in my actions that night. If anything, the way I behaved was more of a regression from the growth I think I've made. And I don't have any neatly fitting explanation to psychologically excuse it all away. But, I can share with you a bit of what I've been reflecting on for a while, and that your questions and points in your email bring up.

I am a person who always has my shit together. Who always has a plan, a direction, a schedule, a routine, a goal. Who always feels like I have to be the one to take charge of a situation, lead and watch out for others, make sure everything goes smoothly and that everyone's having a good time. For the most part, I like that about myself, I know it is a fundamental part of who I am, and I accept it. But sometimes, it is fucking exhausting.

I've had to embrace that role in many of my relationships - sometimes, it is just something that comes naturally to me, like in our relationship, as well as within many of my friend groups. In my relationship with Brent, it was a big factor as well. I was the one who wanted to join the Peace Corps, and he agreed. Which meant we had to get married, and he agreed. I was the one who wanted to move to Chicago, and he agreed. And then start graduate school, and encourage him to do the same, and he agreed. Every major decision for both of our lives was made by me. Which is wonderful in some ways, because I always felt I was free to make my own choices, as was Brent, and if we both wanted the same thing, then it would continue to work out. But eventually, the stress of that became really taxing, and affected other aspects of our relationship...

While you are, of course, one of the people who knows me better than anyone, there are some parts of my life I've always been reluctant to share with you, or that we just never really talked about much, and sex is one of those things. Maybe it was because I was married, and it seemed weird to share it, or maybe it is just general shame/guilt around sex that I've been carrying around my whole life because of our upbringing, I don't know. It took great effort for me to tell you about the polyamory thing, and I knew you wouldn't necessarily be on board with the idea, but I wanted to tell you because I wanted you to know me. And I do appreciate that you accepted it. But, we never talked about it much beyond that.

A very significant factor in the reason why Brent and I chose to become polyamorous, and are no longer together now, is because I lost interest in him, sexually. I still loved him, enjoyed spending time with him, respected him as a person, etc. But after being the decision-making, responsible, guiding person in the relationship for so long, it became harder and harder for me to see him in a sexual way. I tried really hard. I felt really guilty. He felt rejected and undesirable, of course. Which made me feel guiltier and angry at myself for not being able to do such a simple thing - to have sexual interest in this person that I loved. This went on for years...

At first, I thought it was just a natural decline in my sex drive in general. That had happened to Brent before, and I had all those feelings of being rejected and undesirable, so I knew how bad it must feel for him, and I thought that if I just waited and kept trying, it would come back. It didn't, and I realized that I did have sexual interest in other people. Then we decided to open our relationship, and I learned a lot in that process, but that's another conversation. Ultimately, the situation between me and Brent didn't change. And eventually, I had to accept that it wasn't going to, that I couldn't force it, and all the talking about it and crying about it and going to therapy and talking about it some more was only making me feel worse and guiltier and not changing the situation. So, I was the one who said we should end our relationship, and he agreed. I was the one who said we should get a divorce, and he agreed.

So, after being in the same relationship for almost all of my adult life and then finding myself 27 and divorced, at a time when most of my friends were just getting engaged or married, I realized that I wanted to make some serious life changes and test myself and learn more about myself, and really just be out on my own. Which is a big part of the reason I came to Guatemala. I needed a change, and I wanted to see what it would be like to go off of the obvious path of life that I always felt I was supposed to take - to get a good job, work hard, be ambitious, start a family. I wanted to see what it might be like, what I might be like, living without a strict plan.

For the most part, it's been great. And I've found that I really enjoyed it, and it was challenging not knowing what's coming next, and I was afraid, and that was okay. I don't need to worry about the future so much. I also learned that, now having discovered that I can live that way if I want to, I still prefer to have a plan. I like having purpose and direction, and I'm an action-oriented person in that regard - I thrive when I have something to work toward and am taking the steps toward it. Now that I've decided I want to pursue my PhD, I'm very driven in that, and I've been really focused on reaching out to professors, writing my statement of purpose, doing research into my area of interest, etc. It's who I am. I'm happy with it.

But every once in a while, holding that all together, being responsible and having my shit together and sticking to my lists and my schedule and all of those other certainties...it just falls apart. Every once in a while, and usually under the influence of alcohol, I have a really reckless night that I tend to regret afterward. And I'm noticing that this is a pattern of destructive behavior that I need to be more aware of and I need to stop. Alcohol isn't an excuse, it's just one factor. Sex is also usually involved. And yea, I think having male attention to boost my self-esteem in some way is a part of it as well. Normally, I take more pride in and find more self-worth in my intellect, my work, my place in the world, rather than my appearance. That's something I've had to learn - to literally re-train my brain to think in those ways, to value myself, to stop hating my body and just accepting it and loving myself for better reasons. It's been hard, it takes work, and it's much easier to just seek male attention that seems to do all that for you, in the moment.

One night, while Brent and I were still together but seeing other people, I went out with some friends. This guy I was sort of seeing came and met me out, really late as the bar was closing. I was already rather drunk, and he bought us two more drinks which we had to finish quickly before the place closed. I slammed it without a second thought. He had a car and offered me a ride, so I said goodbye to my friends and went with him. We went back to his place, we smoked some weed, we went upstairs to his room, and by this time, I was pretty fucked up, but still could have made better choices. We had sex, and I spent the night. I didn't call or text Brent to let him know I wasn't coming home, none of my friends knew where I had ended up, and I didn't make the effort to get myself home so that Brent wouldn't be worried. I didn't even look at my phone. I woke up the next morning because Kal (the guy's) boss called him, waking us up. He was looking for me. I got my phone and had probably 50 missed calls, mostly from Brent. He had been worried. He had called the police. He called all my friends, they told him I was with Kal (who we knew through work), they got the phone number of the org. Kal worked for and called it, and then Kal's boss called him, and the whole thing was this huge, terrible, and completely avoidable mess. I hurt Brent, I put Kal in an awkward situation, I got my friends unnecessarily involved - and all for what? For one stupid night of me being careless.

This was probably the most extreme example, but not a completely isolated incident. Somewhat similar things have happened before. And one of them happened that night while you were here. And so, I recognize this is a pattern, and a very unhealthy one. Not one that is repeated very frequently, but a persistent pattern, nonetheless.

So, to attempt to answer your questions. I can't really say why I did it. Probably out of insecurity, mainly. Did I think about your feelings at all? Honestly, no, not in that moment. Not until the next morning, and then felt awful. If I had thought of your feelings, I don't think I would have made the choices I did. But, I didn't think of them. I didn't think of anything but myself and my own stupid reckless and careless rampage. To be honest, most of it is a total blur. I was MUCH drunker than I have been in a VERY long time, but I acknowledge and own that I made the choice to get that drunk. Which was also inconsiderate and stupid. I didn't think about why you might have left, I didn't notice that you had left, I had no concept of the passage of time, and don't clearly remember the order of events. I remember snatches of that night, and what I do remember mostly embarrasses me. I don't like seeing myself as the person I was behaving as that night either.

I, of course, know that loyalty in friendships is very important to you. And honestly, if I would have even had the faculties or the consideration to think at all before acting, I would have thought about that. But, this is going to sound stupid, but it really had nothing to do with you. It wasn't you, it was me. I would have probably done the same regardless of who I was with that night, because I wasn't thinking about how my actions would affect other people at all. Or even how they would affect myself. Really, I wasn't thinking. Just doing. And didn't even fully realize what I was doing while I was doing it.

So, I guess to attempt to tie all this together - I have changed in recent years. The aftermath of my relationship with Brent has affected me, the divorce has affected me, the move to Guatemala has affected me. But I think I've come out of those things mostly with positive changes. I have a better sense of who I am now, I have finally come out of a depression I was experiencing for many years, I am more optimistic about my future, more accepting of myself, more tolerant and accepting of others, and more willing to try new things and test my limits and challenge my boundaries, while still recognizing that sometimes, I have those boundaries for a reason and they're a good thing. But clearly there are issues I still need to work through and areas in which I still need to improve.

I guess some part of me hasn't grown out of the girl I was in middle school, and I don't even really know how, at that time, I came to be that way...I guess upon entering public school, because I somehow suddenly stuck out as pretty and became popular at that time, it gave me the approval of others around me, it made me automatically liked by people who didn't even know me, and deep down, I'm pretty shy, so I felt like I needed that. Or I, at least, enjoyed it because it assuaged my insecurities and allowed me to not have to deal with them, to not have to work on reconciling myself to myself.

This incident in Belize, which is a part of a pattern of destructive behaviors, is one of those things I need to work on changing still. It is not a part of the changes that have occurred in me, it is an old pattern of behavior that still needs changing. And I can honestly say that I am glad you had such a strong reaction to it. I am glad that you expressed your anger. I think it is the limit for me, if that makes sense. It's the reality check I needed to show me that this pattern of behavior can't continue. That it's harmful and hurtful to others, and to me. Which means I need to find other, healthy outlets for the stress and anxiety and pressure I sometimes feel as a result of the standards I normally hold myself to and the role I normally play, or I need to go easier on myself when it comes to those things. I still have some figuring it out to do. 

All I can tell you is that I'm deeply sorry for how my behavior affected you. And I'm embarrassed of the way I acted and am sorry that you had to witness it. It had absolutely nothing to do with my feelings about or relationship with you, and I'm sorry that it had an impact on that as well.

There are still things you don't know about me, or sides of me you've probably haven't seen much of...topics that we just tend not to discuss, or contexts in which we haven't been together. And I'm still changing, and always will be. And I tend to keep a lot of stuff inside, and it's hard for me to really share who I am with other people. But, I want you to know me. And if nothing else, I hope this helps a little in that regard.

I love you, and I appreciate your concern.

Love,
   Sister


Me on July 8:

HI Sister,

Sorry for taking so long to respond; I didn't mean for it to go this long. At first I was just thinking about what I wanted to say, and then I just...didn't wanna think about it at all, and I kinda just left it longer than I meant to. Anyway, thanks for taking the time to explain to me some of the things that have been going on with you. A lot of what you told me about you and Brent's relationship, I sort of already knew. Either from just being around the 2 of you, or based on things you've said in the past. As far as the polyamory thing goes, when you guys told me that, it alarmed me because I recognized it as a symptom of unhappiness, not as this...period of marital enlightenment that you guys were making it out to be. And that's why I had a problem with it. I didn't think it was the right way to go about trying to fix your relationship. I know it can be emotionally taxing to be in a relationship (any kind of relationship) that forces you into the role of caregiver/adult/responsibility all the time. That's how I felt in my relationship with Abbie. Ha. To be honest, that side of me kind of scares me, because I don't like thinking of myself as the motherly sort; I equate it with being old for some reason. Maybe that's part of the reason I always let you take control of situations when we're together. If you would rather not always play that role when we're together, that's totally ok with me. In the case of our trip, I just thought it would be easier for both of us because you know the area better than I do, you speak Spanish, etc. 
As far as changing goes, I do believe we are constantly in the process of becoming who we are supposed to be. Actually, when I reflect on just the past 5 or 6 years of my life, I made a lot of drastic changes, and I think just from one year to the next, I became a very different person. Not so much when I was younger, but mid-20's to 30's has been a big change for me, and I think that' normal. It's obviously different for everyone, but it's important to be aware of the changes, and for there to be some intent behind it. Self-awareness is a rare and wonderful thing. Not many people have it. And I think your last email shows that you do, so that's good. 
Recognizing your pattern of destructive behavior is also good. I do remember that incident in Chicago with Kal. I was one of the people calling you that morning. I had forgotten about it till now, but Brent did call me pretty early that morning, worried. I can't really offer much advice on how to prevent this from happening, because it's never really happened to me. I mean, sure, there have been several times I've gone out, gotten shit-faced and had some regrets in the morning. But my actions never affected anyone but myself, and maybe the other people I was drinking with. I'm really good at drinking nowadays. Haha. I don't really know how I do it, but I manage to get just barely drunk enough to feel good, and then just maintain that. So I never black out or do anything too dumb. There are exceptions to this of course, but generally I'm pretty good about knowing when to stop. Maybe that's just because I used to drink more in my early 20's and I learned my hard limits, or maybe it's just because I hate that feeling of not being in control of my body. (That's why I have no interest in hard drugs) I dunno, maybe it's just because I'm 31 now, and I get hangovers much more easily. The only advice I can give you is to rely more on the people you go out drinking with. You and I don't go out much together, and I like getting drunk with you, so I wasn't paying much attention to how many drinks you had that night. But in the future, I will. When I go out with Taryn and we get wasted, we always take care of each other. It's just understood. And that's important, not only to prevent you from making stupid decisions, but for safety's sake.
You're right that we were raised to think sex is bad and shameful and therefore you should never talk about it. And we are definitely products of our upbringing, but I DON'T really think there's anything shameful about sex. And I don't have a problem talking about it with you. I just don't really go into many details about my sex life with anyone. Unless it's like a funny story or something. I'm just kind of a private person when it comes to that, but I don't feel more uncomfortable talking about it with you than any of my other friends. And I hope you don't think I was judging you because you wanted to have sex with someone on the trip. Because I don't have a problem with that at all. I just think it's important to be cognitive and responsible about it. There's a reason I've never gotten pregnant or had STD/STI's in my life, and that' because I'm careful. It's also partly cuz I'm celibate. Which is unfortunate, and not really my choice. :/ Last night I went on a tinder date with a guy who turned out to be an ex con. FML. Well, this concludes my email. We don't have to talk about the thing in Belize again, I feel much better about it now. I mean it's no longer keeping me up at night, so we can just move on. Well I'm starving so I'm gonna go make breakfast. Bye!

Love,

Shsiter (<--- that's what I just typed. wtf.)

Our emails continued, but it's not important to include them here. I genuinely felt much better about the situation, and something about being back in the States made it easier to move on and forget it. It was sort of like a bad dream I had. And I'm thankful and lucky to say that I can look back on our Belize trip fondly now, despite what happened. It's no longer a tainted memory. Just sort of a blur.


Friday, October 16, 2015

The John Thing

When I came back from C.A. I was exhausted, both physically and mentally, and I had a lot to think about. With John, and with Sophie. The John thing seemed like it needed more immediate addressing however, and I wasn't quite ready to talk with Sophie about The Thing That Happened. I was still processing, and I needed the time away from her (finally) to think about it.
The John thing consumed my mind for days. Mostly because I was so caught off guard by the whole thing, and because I was so on the fence about what to do. At one time it had seemed so much more cut and dry. I was interested in him, he was interested in me, but it just never happened due to timing and distance. But now that the opportunity was really presenting itself, it felt...off. I dunno. Like I said in my last post, I felt I had already shut the door on this, and now it was open again, and I was peering in, but not ready to cross the threshold. So I analyzed, and overanalyzed, like I am wont to do. How would it work? He still lives in another state. I don't really want to be in a long distance relationship, but just starting out it would be silly for either of us to move. That would put things on a way more serious level right off the bat. So, what to do, what to do? And do I even wanna try to move on with this guy? I mean his track record isn't exactly promising. Years and years of saying stuff to me, and telling me he's gonna do things and never actually coming through. He's flaky! And he's an odd bird. He's bad at communicating and too hard to read. So that would also need to be addressed, but it's not like I can turn him into someone he's not! And I'm also not attracted to him anymore the way I used to be. I mean I still think he is attractive, I just...I'm not attracted to him anymore. I know, I'm shallow, it's a problem. It's not that I think looks are the only thing that matter, cuz I don't, intelligence and humor, and some degree of success (as in, you're not living in your moms basement) are also very important, but if I don't find the person physically attractive, I won't ever be able to get past it. And the kicker to all this is, I really wanted to like him, and to be into it, I just wasn't. So I kept trying to talk myself into it. And I told myself I was being silly and ridiculous to let a good guy go, and I should at least give it a shot and see what happens. So after 3 days, I texted John, and we had this little gem of a conversation, which somehow spanned over a couple days.



































































I didn't speak to him again till September. I spent a couple days after that conversation sort of reeling, but... Fuck it. That's exactly the conclusion I came to.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Central America: The Final Chapter

So we're sitting at that restaurant, eating, awkwardly, and suddenly I feel like I'm going to shit my pants. Lol. My stomach had been feeling a little weird. So I excuse myself, and set out in search of the bathroom, very hurriedly! Of course, when I find it, I need a key, so I'm farting as silently as possible as I run to the bar to get it. When I finally made it to the bathroom, I discovered that I had, in actuality, shat my pants! Never trust a fart. Ugh. Thank god I was in a bathing suit and wearing a loose cover up. And thank god it was a private, one-stall bathroom and no one else was at that restaurant! I whisked off my bikini bottoms and ran them under the faucet, added a little soap and scrubbed. It was like, a turd in my pants, just a little shart, haha. Sorry if that's TMI, but THIS is how my morning started, guys! And because I was fighting with my sister, I couldn't even tell her and then share a laugh about it. But it was fine, and I felt a lot better after using the bathroom, and no one was any the wiser!
So after breakfast, we meet John and our snorkel guide, Kirk, at the dock. Kirk was so nice, he bought us giant bottles of water and gatorade, both of which we all needed after our night of drinking. And, best of all, he showed up with Sophie's clothes. The embarrassed look on her face when he gave them to her was almost worth all the shit she put me through.
I was trying so hard on our 1 hour trip out to the Cayes to play it cool, and not let on how pissed I was, because I didn't want John to pick up on anything. The less explaining I had to do, the better. Once we got there though, it was easy to just forget everything that had happened the night before, because it was SOOO BEAUTIFUL. The water was as clear as glass, and turquoise everywhere! It was a tropical paradise in every sense of the word and I was just soaking in the sights and wishing I had my Mark IV to take photos! But of course, I didn't bring that because it would have gotten wet. And the snorkeling was so much fun! We saw tons of beautiful corals and fish, and we swam with sea turtles and touched nurse sharks, and searched for conch shells! It was amazing. Around lunch time we took the boat to a PRIVATE ISLAND for lunch! It's own by a fancy resort, but anyone can eat there. It had the most amazing view. Since I wasn't feeling very conversational, I went and sat in the hammock and watched the pelicans diving, while Sophie, John and Kirk were drinking and talking. We went out for more snorkeling after that, and by the time we headed back, we were all exhausted. Kirk dropped Sophie and I off first, and we walked down the boardwalk in mostly tired silence, but my heart was pounding, because I knew I wasn't just going to let this all go.
By the time we got back to the hostel, it was threatening to boil over and all it took was Sophie making some casual small talk for me to lose it. I can't even remember what she said to me, but I'll try to recall the conversation as best I can.
Me: You know, I spent the whole day trying not to think about last night so that your SLUTFEST last night wouldn't ruin this trip, but if you think I'm just going to forget about this, you're delusional.
Sophie: ((Stunned silence))
Me: Do you even know WHY I'm mad at you?!
Sophie: Actually...no. I mean I have some ideas, but could you tell me exactly why?
Me: You spent the whole night flirting with a guy I told you I was going for! We AGREED on this! I made it very clear to you! And then, as if to prove something to me, you proceed to FUCK HIM right in front of FUCKING EVERYONE in the bar! And did you even notice that I left?? NO! You decide once isn't enough and you need to rub it in my face and fuck him right in front of me A SECOND TIME! It's not even about the guy, Sophie, I don't give a shit about him, but you KNOW ME, and you should have known how much of a betrayal that would be! If you weren't my sister, I would literally NEVER speak to you again! That would be it! Friendship over!

I said other things in the heat of the moment, and I felt really good about it too, just letting her have it. Oh yea, now I remember. She asked me if she could borrow my shampoo. During and after I screamed at her, she just had this completely blank look on her face. Maybe it was shock, because I have never, EVER yelled at my sister like that. Granted, I'd never been so hurt, betrayed or angry at her before, so I guess there's a first for everything. I didn't give her a chance to say anything though, I turned around and stormed into the bathroom, and slammed the door. I don't think she would have had anything to say right then though, because honestly, it was like all those things I had said to her, were only just occurring to her when I said them. But I was only seeing red at the time. When I got out of the shower, she was gone. That was around the time I noticed the HORRIBLE sunburn I'd gotten on my back, from being facedown in the water all day. ((sigh)) I made myself as comfortable as I could (considering my sunburn) in a hammock outside and settled in to read Drums of Autumn. I'd only been there a little while, when John approached.
He had run into Sophie on her way to buy some shampoo and she told him I was here. So he got in the hammock next to me and we chatted for a bit.
"So right after you and Sophie got off the boat, Kirk asked me if we were dating." He said.
I almost laughed out loud and sarcastically said, "Why, cuz we were so touchy-feely today on his boat?" (We didn't even sit next to each other!)
He laughed at that, and gave me a sideways glance, which was unreadable, as usual.
"Well I think he likes you."
"Hmm." Just what I need. Another complication! I ended up telling John that I was mad at Sophie, but I didn't go into the specifics. I just told him I was embarrassed and annoyed about her behavior the night before. He seemed to understand, maybe even more than he let on, but he didn't force the issue.
She returned shortly after and went inside to shower, then John left when I said I was thinking about taking a nap. But I didn't take a nap, I stayed in the hammock and read some more. Then Sophie came out.
"Peyton...?"
I looked up from my book.
"I understand why you're mad, and you have every right to be, and I just wanted to say I'm really sorry. I know it's no excuse, but I was really drunk, and I wasn't thinking about what I was doing, or how it might affect you, or me. I was just wasted. And I know I hurt you, and I'm just really, really sorry."
I couldn't look at her or say anything, I just nodded. I could feel her sincerity and her remorse, and it was validating my hurt feelings and making me want to cry, so I just didn't say anything. She went away.
About a half hour after that, I went in.
"Do you wanna go get something to eat?" I asked her.
She smiled and agreed.
I wasn't ready to forgive her, and I was still hurting, but I was ready to stop being mad. And I really DIDN'T want the short remainder of the trip to be sullied. I just wanted to move on, and have fun again. So I made the decision to make the best of it. And she's my sister. I love her. I knew eventually we'd get through it.
We went to one of the places we hadn't been to yet for dinner, and ran into none other than Kirk! I whined at him a little about my sunburn, but we told him we had a great time, and he asked if we wanted to join him for dinner tomorrow night at this "Great little place" he knew about, so we agreed. Then he disappeared for a bit, and he came back with fresh aloe for me! It was seriously a lifesaver too. I milked Sophie's guilt and made her slather my whole back with it when we got back to the hostel and then we both collapsed into bed.
The next day, I was in so much pain from my sunburn, and so physically exhausted that we really didn't do anything except lay around. John went on another dive, so he was gone the whole day. But we were supposed to go out to dinner with Kirk that night. I ended up getting talked out of that by John though, because he informed me that the restaurant Kirk wanted to take us to was expensive and romantic, and that he probably expected something from me. So I told him I was sunburned and miserable and we couldn't go. Lol. So we decided the 3 of us would go somewhere to dinner, sans Kirk, since it was mine and Sophie's last night in Belize.
So John texted me shortly after he came back from his dive, and this is how this convo went... He was Air B&Bing it there, and had roommates of sorts, sharing a beach with him, from Portland. And he had invited me to go skinny dipping at his place with them. Just in case you're wondering who the "hippies" are that we keep referring to, lol.



So that's what we did. We went to dinner, and didn't say anything else about it. It was still kinda weird though, for me at least. I told Sophie about it of course, and she told me she liked him, a lot, and she thought I should go for it, but I wasn't so sure. MONTHS and months of back and forth, and him being flaky, and the fact that I'd pretty much moved on from the idea of anything ever coming of all that... It was like reopening a door that I had shut and locked a while ago, ya know? And I was feeling so emotionally raw after everything with Sophie and I, I just couldn't deal. I wasn't equipped at the time, and there wasn't really a good way for me to explain that to John. ((Sigh)) But I sent him this message after we got back to the hostel that night.

The rest of our Central America trip was pretty bland. Just a lot of traveling, and being stuck in bus stations and on boat docks, waiting around. And most of that time was spent vacillating between my 2 options for what to do about John. Should I go for it? Or should I move on? ((Sigh)) We did go to a MidSommer Festival party with some of Sophie's Swedish friends who work with her in Guatemala. That was fun. I even danced and flirted with a cute guy, who chatted with me about journalism and photography for the better part of an hour. He got me drinks too!  I was hoping for a just a little bit of making out, but then I found out his ex was also at the party, and he seemed like he might still be into her, so I left it alone. I was heading back to the States the next day anyway.

All in all, my trip was an adventure. Like a rollercoaster with it's ups and downs. And you haven't heard the last of the drama with Sophie OR with John.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

To Tide You Over...

Sorry it's taking me longer to write out this story than I'd originally planned. It's just...I start writing about it, and I get upset all over again, and I have to put it down. And I've done that like 6 times. Ugh. So I'm gonna try to finish it all in one post and be done with it, but please be patient with me! I'm still here!
And to answer someone's question, everything I write is real! This all really happened to me, I just changed everyone's names. Be back soon!

Misadventures in Central America: Part 3

I have literally been having the month from hell, and circumstances have kept me from blogging the last week. I've just been so...ugh. I'll get into that later though. I know you guys are dying to hear what happened with me and Sophie in Belize. So, here goes.

I set my alarm for extra early the next morning, hoping I could slip out for snorkeling without even waking Sophie up. The guys were all gone already. They must have left at like 5am or something. I was still really angry, but most of that anger was already dissolving into hurt. But I wasn't just angry about what happened, I was mad because I thought this was going to ruin the whole vacation for me, and I was mad because I still hadn't had a chance to yell at Sophie about it. And I just couldn't stand to look at her stupid face. Then just as I was making my escape, Sophie rolled over and looked at me with that sleepy, hangover, confused face and said, "Where are you going?"
"Snorkeling."
She hesitated, then said, "Can I come?"
"I don't care what you do, but I'm leaving." And I did.
I still had like an hour before we were supposed to meet our guide, so I walked down the beach in search of a place for some solitary breakfast. However, that was not to be, cuz some random native I passed by started walking and talking with me, and I was just too tired and upset to shake him off, so I just let him walk with me. He ended up coming with me to this breakfast place, and I somehow ended up telling him I was fighting with my sister. I didn't get into specifics, but it came up in conversation when he asked how I came to be in Belize and why I was breakfasting alone. Shortly after I ordered breakfast, my stomach started bothering me. Could have been from alcohol the night before, or drinking unfiltered water, I dunno. I didn't have time to wonder, because Sophie was approaching from the beach.
"Can I join you?" She was still acting like a dog with it's tail between it's legs.
"Sure."
I had decided to make the most of the day, and try and put aside my feelings until later. I mean when would I be in Belize again?? Plus, I didn't wanna be fighting with my sister in front of John. I knew it wouldn't be easy, but it was worth a shot.
To be continued...

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Misadventures in Central America: Part 2

Before I forget, Sophie and Brent got a legal divorce just before she moved to Guatemala. They were never a traditional couple with a traditional marriage, and I guess they both felt that a divorce was for the best. They're still like best friends, and Sophie still goes to Chicago to visit Brent whenever she comes to the states, so that's good. They respect and care for each other a lot, and I will always think of Brent as my brother-in-law. They're just not in love anymore I guess. I know somebody asked about that, so I felt the need to clarify. It just hadn't come up in any of my previous posts. Well, moving on...

So we arrived in Belize, FINALLY. I couldn't wait to just not travel for a couple days, and I had yet to even get tipsy on this trip! Placencia is like the Stars Hollow of Belize. For real. It's a small, quaint little town that relies a lot on tourism (obviously), but it's like everybody there knows each other. There is a long sidewalk (it was called the Boardwalk, but really I dunno why. It was just a sidewalk) that runs parallel to the beach. Between the sidewalk and the beach are tons of bars, restaurants, hostels, shops, and residences. So we started walking down it until we found our hostel. Some of Sophie's friends had recommended a place, and it was great. The proprietor lived above it, and it was basically just a huge room full of bunkbeds. There was a separate kitchen and bathroom, and a porch filled with hammocks. Luckily for us, there were only 2 other people staying there. A lady who came over on the boat with us, and one guy whose friends had already left. So we chose our beds, threw our stuff in a locker, and headed out exploring. I was in desperate need of a drink. Hauling 2 roller bags through sand is the literal worst.
We stopped at the first open restaurant/bar and sat down. Basically everything is outside there. So we were sitting on a covered patio, overlooking the beach. It was awesome. Now John had arrived in Belize a few days before, and had been working on his Master Divers Cert. So I sent him an iMessage from the restaurant wifi letting him know we had arrived and where we were so he could meet us later. But he was out on a dive that day and wouldn't be back for some time. I think it was like 5 o'clock when we got to the restaurant.
Now before I go any further, just a little bit of background. Prior to this trip, I hadn't seen John in...years. I'm not even sure how long, but years. And after he invited me to Belize and then flaked out on me like he usually does, I eventually got fed up and basically let him have it. I can't remember if I blogged about this or not, but we didn't speak for like months after that. This is how that conversation went:

September 12, 2014
Me: You know what's weird? Despite the fact that we are often in the same place at the same time, I often wonder if I will actually ever see you again.

John: Valid point. I swing in different circles now so it's getting harder. Truth is when I'm in Houston I spend a lot of time with my  brother.

Me: Well it's a shame we're not going to Belize....I guess you'll never see my boobs in person. ;)

John: I really wanted to go, but I haven't been as productive with work as I could've been. Procrastination is inevitable.
John: And damn. That does bring a tear to my eyes.

Me: Aren't you on vacation?? I don't think procrastination is your problem.

John: That's the thing. I am on vacation whilst trying to accomplish a few tasks for work. I had to take time off in order to actually get stuff done.

Me: You're a workaholic. Among other things...


John: Haha, true, and it's not quite the balance I would like. They're two extremes. Nothing is close to middle.
John: It kinda hurts having the idea in my head that it could be possible that I might see you.
John: I don't want that to happen

Me: Well then stop being so flaky and quit jerking me around all the time. Your fickleness is giving me whiplash. I don't like it. It's frustrating.

September 13, 2014
Me: Sorry if I came off bitchy last night, but I don't think you realize how exasperating you can be. Our relationship obviously crosses over the line of friendship, and sort of has for years now, so it's hard not to attach some sort of expectations to that. And I don't think me wanting to actually see you once in a while is expecting much, but what do I know? I guess what I'm saying is, you drive me crazy with your unwitting indifference, and...sorrynotsorry.

 I didn't talk to him again till January of this year. He never really responded to what I said either, he just went radio silent. So when he messaged me in January, it was to ask if I'd be willing to rent out half of my house for a weekend for him and some coworkers. No small talk really, and I was kind of cold towards him. Not rude, just not really open like normal. I couldn't rent him the house either because that was the weekend Jenna came to town, but whatever.

So after all that, I was willing to bury the hatchet when I found out I was going to Belize, so I invited him. But I wasn't really sure what to expect. I mean I basically assumed that whatever it was that had been between us at one time, was over. I mean I told him how I felt, and he didn't say or do anything to change that, so I figured that was it! We were just friends. And even though I was mad and frustrated about it for while, I got over it. I honestly did think/hope he might try to change my mind back then, or apologize, or I dunno, something. But he didn't. And I moved on. I stopped entertaining ideas of him in my mind, or thinking about how it might work out if we ever got the timing right. I just got off that train and didn't look back.

So now here we are in Belize. Sophie and I, at this restaurant/bar, on the patio, in front of a beautiful white sand beach, azure water sparkling in front of us, and margaritas in our hands. And there's a table across from us with 4 dudes sitting at it. And a couple of them are pretty attractive. It didn't take long for one of them to approach us. I can't even remember what farce they used as an excuse to talk to us, but before long, we were all sitting together. And we were having fun! They were all from the UK, and in medical school. I guess to get through medical school in the UK you have to travel somewhere, sort of like a sabbatical or something, and they chose Belize. There were girls with them too, but they weren't at the bar. Sophie was hanging all over this one guy, Chase. And I was sitting next to a guy named Ian. They were the 2 hot ones. Right away I texted Sophie to determine which guy she was gonna go for, and she said probably Chase, but sort of shrugged. So I texted back, "Ok, well I want Ian." And she said ok. So we did shots with them, and played games, and watched the NBA playoffs, cuz that was happening that week. Steph Curry vs. Lebron James. Unbeknownst to me, Sophie was getting hammered. Although, I was pretty buzzed myself so I guess I just didn't notice. Well finally one of the guys cops up to the fact that Chase has a girlfriend, which I found pretty disgusting considering how hard he was hitting on Sophie. But whatever.
Then, finally, John shows up. And it was a little awkward, because here I was flirting with this guy, and I didn't wanna totally neglect John. I don't think he was expecting to meet Sophie and I and 4 dudes. Lol. It was a total sausage fest. So I tried to split my attention between him and Ian, but it was hard. For one thing, Ian was drunk and all over the place, I was less drunk, but still obviously under the influence, and John was completely sober. I was trying so hard to NOT give Ian the impression that John was my boyfriend or something, while also trying to include John in the games and conversation. And that's really hard to do when you've been drinking. And during all this, I sort of lost track of Sophie. I mean she was still there, but we had moved to a bigger table, and like I said, all over the place. So when she came back to the table, I noticed she'd been talking to Ian, so I sent her another message, reinforcing the fact that I had dibs on Ian, and she had Chase! She nodded in acknowledgment. Then John and I walked over to the bar to get drinks and we started discussing plans for a snorkeling trip to the Cayes the next morning. Me and Sophie been having trouble finding somebody that would book us with just 3 people, and of course the British boys were leaving early in the morning. Lucky for us, a guy in the bar who has a boat and does tours overheard me, and offered to take us out! So we exchanged email addresses and planned to meet him at 7am (yikes!) the next morning.
So I go back to the table to tell Sophie the good news and I see that she's holding hands with Ian.

WTF??

I must have had a look on my face or something, because then John mentioned he saw them making out while we were at the bar talking to the tour guide. I must've had a rage blackout at this point, because I think I called Sophie a cunt. I mean, quietly, in her ear. I just remember hissing something like that in her ear when I got back to the table. Obviously I was pissed, and drunk. And wtf she's my goddamn sister! This isn't supposed to happen!

I was trying really hard to keep my cool, and I sent her another message that said something like, "WTF are you doing!? I told you I was going for Ian!" and she didn't respond. Chase had been begging everyone to run into the water with him for last 2 hours and finally I decided that sounded like a good idea. So I said let's do it, and all of us went in, with the exception of John. I think I just wanted to get away, or maybe I was looking for an opportunity to talk to Sophie away from everyone, I don't really remember what I was thinking. I was seeing red. But I ran into the water, with all of my clothes on, and when I got out, Sophie and Ian were fucking in the water. Yes, fucking. Fornicating, Smashing. Bumping Uglies. In front of everyone. It was not only a hurtful betrayal, but it was terribly fucking embarrassing!!! Everyone in the restaurant could see them, and they left their clothes on the beach. And remember how I said everyone knows everyone in Placencia?? UGhhhhh... By that point, I had had it. I was soaking wet, and cold, and pissed. So I said I was gonna call it a night, and I closed the tab. John offered to walk me back to the hostel. I said, "No, it's ok, you don't have to do that." But he pretty much insisted, so I let him, even though all I wanted was to be alone.
Then I had to walk all the way back with him trying to carry on a normal conversation, which was not easy. He came in and checked out the place, and then I pretty much told him I was going to bed and I'd see him in the morning for snorkeling.
"Do you think your sister's still going?" he asked me with a chuckle.
"NO." I said, "I really doubt it."

When I finally got in bed, it took me at least an hour to fall asleep, even though I was so tired. I just couldn't stop thinking about Sophie and Ian. I mean, it's not even about the guy, it's about her! She finds out the dude she likes has a girlfriend so she just nabs my dude!? WTF?! She knows how much I value loyalty in my relationships, almost above all other things, and she should have known how much that would hurt me. I was really angry on the surface, but deep down, I was crushed. It made me feel like I was in 7th grade again, when Sophie was "The Pretty One" and she was super popular, and I wasn't, and people were always comparing us. And the fact that Ian chose her over me was just salt in the wound. What a great way to start our visit to Belize.
Just as I was drifting off to sleep, I hear knocking on the door. Luckily I was the only one there at the time, or they would've woken up everybody! It was Sophie of course, loudly "whispering" my name from the door. She had locked herself out. Well I refused to get out of bed to let her in, because fuck her! That's why! She had 4 dudes who she could sleep with!
Well she got in anyway, I dunno how, and she had all 4 guys with her!! UGhhh... I pretended to be asleep and ignored them while they all got into beds. Until I was woken up by the sounds of Ian and Sophie fucking AGAIN!!!! FROM THE BED RIGHT NEXT TO ME!!!
I completely and totally lost my shit. I rolled over and screamed, "Are you seriously going to fuck in the bed right next to me?!?! If you're gonna act like animals, go outside and do it! No, you know what, never mind. I'LL leave!" And I stormed out in my pajamas and slammed the door as loudly as I could.
Funnily enough, I was sitting in one of the hammocks, fuming, when these 2 guys walked up smoking weed. So I smoked with them on the beach, and vented about my "slut sister" and then I felt much better. Lol. I don't remember going back inside or going to bed, but I do remember that 2 of the guys were asleep in one bottom bunk. Lol. There were like 5 open top bunks! I took a picture.
I guess this is gonna have to be a 3 part story, maybe even 4, cuz I have so much more to tell, but I'm tired of typing. So,

To Be Continued...


Tuesday, September 8, 2015

The Accidental Phone Call

Ok, as promised, Tinder Date #2. First of all, his name was Joshtin. Yea, like a mashup of Josh and Justin. Weird. But his profile was funny and sarcastic, so I thought we might get along. And he was really very funny via text! So we made plans to hang out on a Tuesday afternoon.
Well, shortly after we had made said plans, I accidentally butt dialed him. Ok, it actually wasn't a butt dial, I honestly don't know how I did it, but it was an accident! And it was pretty late at night. I wasn't with anybody or anything, I was just home in my bed, hanging out with the fur babies as per ush. But then I get a text from him... I'm just gonna paste the convo here.


































































So, as you can see from the conversation, I accidentally called him not once, but twice! Lol. But still, the texts were light and funny, which definitely didn't prepare me at all for what he would be like in real life. Which was very aloof, and very stingy with a smile. I'm serious! He didn't smile once on the whole date. In fact, he barely looked at me at all! He mostly just watched TV because Shark Week was on. I tried really hard to make conversation, but it was rough. Plus, he was a smoker, ugh. He was well dressed, and not bad looking, nice and tall, but he also seemed really full of himself, and my general impression was that he thought he was too good for everyone. Towards the end, he started talking about how much packing he needed to do for his business trip overseas, but that he would definitely call me when he got back. He never did of course. Meh, oh well. It clearly wasn't meant to be.
But while we're on the topic of dating, does anybody remember Lane? Well shortly after I moved to NOLA (which was over a year ago now, I can hardly believe it!), he sent me a facebook message. He went to Tulane, so he lived in NOLA for a few years and it's like his favorite city. So he said he just wanted to catch up and see how I liked it. And we've been talking ever since. He's in LA now, working in TV and also for UCLA doing something, I'm not exactly sure what. But we've talked casually, many times, about me going to Cali for a visit, or him coming here. He wanted to come for Jazz Fest, but had just started his job at UCLA so he couldn't take the time off, but he swears he'll be here for it next year. Part of me thinks I'm wasting my time with him, because he lives in fucking California, and what's the point? But another part of me feels like we're so compatible, that it would be stupid to write him off. I mean we actually talk on the phone and facetime each other now and then. We can talk about anything! And he's smart, and funny, and for me it's not all just about looks with him. I mean I am definitely attracted to him, but a lot of that attraction is not physical. And for me that's rare, because I'm kind of shallow. Lol. I mean looks aren't everything to me, but if I'm not physically attracted to someone, I just can't feel chemistry with them, ya know?
I don't see the harm in taking a trip out there, because there are other things I wanna do, and people I wanna see in California besides him, but I'm just worried that I'll get out there and like...fall for him, and then.... Then what?! I don't know! He doesn't seem like he's ready to make a commitment. But I don't know we haven't really talked about it. I don't mean we haven't talked about "Us", I mean we just haven't talked about whether he's in a place to commit to anyone. And I don't think he is. I could be wrong, but he is a couple years my junior. But even if he was like, "Let's try the long distance thing", I don't know if I want that. ((Sigh))
But he has definitely expressed interest, and attraction, and we sort of hashed out everything that happened with us before. I mean he kinda just stopped talking to me, and I was confused and upset, but we hadn't been serious enough for me to be heartbroken about it, so I just got over it. He said he had already made up his mind to leave for grad school (he ended up at NYU), so he already kind of had one foot out the door, which is why he didn't wanna form any attachments. Makes sense. He's a very logical person, not the type to let his emotions rule him. Unlike me... But I think I've gotten better about that. Maybe not. I just analyze everything.
Well this is what I know: I like him. I like him a lot. And I think that I could like him a lot more, but I'm maintaining arms length because of the distance, and because I'm not sure if he really feels enough about me to pursue something, or if this is just a casual phone flirting thing to him. I think he's interesting, funny, intellectual, and good looking. We used to have a lot of fun together. I think we still can. And I think our personalities mesh well, because I can ask him almost anything, talk to him about almost anything, and there's no awkwardness. So that eliminates a lot of guesswork. Who knows if that would carry over into a relationship though. It definitely wasn't like that when we were dating (or whatever you wanna call it) before.
Well. That's it. I just don't know what to do about him in general. I really wanna ask him how he actually feels/could feel, but I don't wanna freak him out. Maybe I'll just ask him anyway, and preface it with, "Don't freak out but..." lol.
Thoughts? Advice? Suggestions?? Anybody? Beuhler?

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Well my grandma passed away this evening. So I will probably be making a trip to Houston in the next couple of days. Just to clarify, this is my paternal grandmother. My maternal grandfather passed away in February. So they weren't married. Different sets of grandparents. My paternal grandfather passed away almost 2 years ago, when I was still in Chicago. And since my grandma had Alzheimer's, she would often forget that her husband was gone. At least they're together now. I'm partly relieved, because I don't have have to worry about her anymore, and she's in a better place. But I'm just really, really said. She was the brightest most positive person. She never lost her spirit or kindness, or her sense of humor, even when it got rough for her. She was witty, and sweet, and everybody loved her. Even though I hadn't seen her in a while, the world is a little less bright without her, but I know there's a new star twinkling somewhere up in the sky. The next couple weeks are going to be rough. I prefer to grieve privately, and I'm not close with most of my dad's family, and I know it's dumb, but I don't want to cry in front of them. The whole experience is gonna feel like trying to hold in a huge fart. Ugh. I'll be so relieved when this is all over.

Monday, August 31, 2015

My grandmother is dying. It's been less than 7 months since we lost Poppa and now I'm going to lose my grandma too. And I'm stuck here in NOLA, and can't get to Houston until after the 4th, because that's when I get paid. I feel like I should be there, even though I know there is nothing I can do for her, and she might not even be aware of my presence. I just can't shake this feeling like I'm about to fall into a dark hole and I might never come out again. And I have no one to talk to about it. I just feel so alone, and I can't stop thinking about her. Wishing I was there, and yet also not wanting to be there. I don't want to sit in a room with my dad's family, who I am not particularly close to (except for Jenna), and watch my grandma die. I don't want my last memory of her to be her lying in a hospital bed, looking and feeling miserable, and unaware of her surroundings. ((Sigh)) I don't know how I'm going to deal with this, I really don't. 2015 has pretty much sucked so far. When will I catch a break???

Misadventures in Central America: Part I

Alright, I know I said my next post would be about my 2nd Tinder date, but because it's been a while since I've blogged regularly, I realized that there are some things I should probably catch you guys up on. The first being my trip to Central America. Sophie has been living in Guatemala for the past year, doing social work with a local youth program. She loves it there, and had been begging me to visit, and finally I had the time and the money (sort of) to go. Sophie is a Type A Personality and therefore likes to be in control and have a plan for everything, so I gave her my dates and let her plan the trip.
This was the itinerary: Louisiana > Houston > Guatemala City > Lago Atitlan > Antigua > Rio Dulce > Livingston > Belize > Guatemala City > Home

So do you guys remember when John invited me to go to Belize with him a while back, but then (as per usual) it ended up not happening? Well I got a bit tipsy one night and told him I was going to Belize finally, and that he should come! And he said he would. I didn't actually believe that he would though, because he's not the most dependable person. But he did! I'll get to that later...

So I drove to Houston first because flights were way cheaper and that way I could fly direct. I spent an evening with my dad and then he drove me to the airport the next morning on his way to work.
I'm not gonna go into ALL the details of every day, but let's just say there was a lot of rain, a lot of boat travel, and not a lot of sleep. The first night we stayed on the lake at Jim's house. Jim is this American guy who's retired in Guatemala and has a huge fancy house on the lake with its own private dock. He is currently dating a 21 year old from Texas and apparently regularly invites American girls to move in with him. Sophie moved in with him on a part time basis because it was free, and nice, obviously, but they don't have any kind of romantic relationship. So, other than the horrific boat ride across the lake in the driving rain, it was nice and peaceful at Jim's. I woke up at like 5am to take photos of the sunrise on the lake too. It was beautiful.
The next day we took another boat to the other side of the lake and spent the day sight seeing sort of. On day 3, we drove to Antigua with Jim and his child bride. Sophie and I stayed in a hostel, while Jim and his gf went to a fancy hotel. The hostel was decent, and we had our own room, but it literally poured rain the whole time we were there too.
Keep in mind, I didn't bring any rain appropriate clothing, or even a light sweater, because it was June and I was going to Central America and I thought it would be hot. But 80% of the trip was spent soaking wet and freezing.

So Antigua was fun, but also exhausting. We ate in some cool little boutique cafes and did some shopping. Then we hopped a bus at 4am to Rio Dulce, a little town on the river (obviously).
We stayed at the most amazing place!! It was like a bungalow village in the middle of the jungle. We got our own little hut, and there were hammocks everywhere, and the couple that runs the place had a dog and a cat who were super cool, and they cooked a communal dinner for us. We were the only ones staying there so really it was just like family dinner, but it was awesome! I spent a lot of time taking photos and laying around reading, which was nice. In the morning we went swimming and kayaking with the dog (who loved kayaking but hated actually getting in the river, lol).
Then the next afternoon we took a private boat to Livingston, which was the last stop before Belize.

Livingston sucked. Well, the hostel sucked. There were thousands of like genetically modified mosquitos everywhere, and we were surrounded by tons of 20 year old hipsters, who just wanted to sit around in the hostel and get wasted, instead of actually going out and doing/seeing things. Also it was hot as FUCK. I should clarify though, NOWHERE that we stayed had air conditioning, but this place was just awful. And we couldn't get out of there soon enough. And of course with all the boats and traveling, and lugging my bags around everywhere, I was just ready for some actual vacation time on my vacation. I had one bag just full of camera equipment and one rollerbag for all my other stuff. Sophie had her backpacking bag, but since I have back problems, I can't carry backpacks. :/ We did eat at an awesome restaurant and I had a boozy drink in a hollowed out coconut, and we took a really informative tour of the Garifuna village. So that was cool. But I couldn't wait to get to Belize!

So we had to go through customs before we could get on our boat to Belize, and they had to take a photo, so of course I made a stupid face. Hahaha. The boat ride was the worst yet. It was about an hour and a half of really, really choppy water, scary boat driving, and being slammed back and forth and up and down, and the luggage was all piled in the front, and I was so sure we were all just gonna tip over and spill into the ocean never to be seen again! I was also really sore and wet by the end of it. It was like riding one of those watery boat rollercoasters at an amusement park that NEVER ENDS.
But when it did finally end, we were in Placencia, Belize. An island paradise!!

More on that in my next post or 2...

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Misadventures in Tinder Dating

I've been on the fence about whether to blog about this or not, because part of me thinks it's been done before, and the other part of me is lazy. Lol. But what the hey.
So in light of my current situation, I thought it couldn't hurt to give Tinder another shot. I mean I'm not really meeting anyone, and I'm not getting any younger. So I thought I'd give it a try. I made sure to mention in my profile that I wanna go on dates, not chat online with strangers. So I made a few matches, and finally a guy asked me out.
His photos were a little iffy...like he could be really attractive, or not attractive at all, ya know? But I took a chance and swiped right, and he asked me out. He wanted to do dinner, but I suggested drinks, because it's more casual. So he picked the place and I went to meet him. Don't worry, I took a screen shot of his pic, and sent it to Bethany telling her where I was headed. In case I turned up dead the next day. Lol.
I got there first, and he was running a bit late, so I ordered a beer and grabbed a stool at the bar. About 10 minutes later, he arrived. I could tell immediately that he wasn't my type. A little too...rough around the edges for me, and not in a good way. I mean, he was really nice, just...I hate to say it, but I was definitely out of his league. Lol. But I figured I'm already here, I might as well just enjoy myself, and treat this like 2 friends hanging out instead of a romantic date. So I did. He was a bit awkward, and not much of a conversationalist, so I did most of the talking and asked him questions to keep the conversation going. He told me he was an electrician, and he recently moved here from Detroit.
Shortly into our "Get to know yous" he says, "You seem really cool and chill and I wanna be honest with you about something."
ALERT!! ALERT!! That's what my brain was saying anyway. I said, "Ok..."
"Um....Well I sorta been to prison before."
"Ok...." ALERT!! ALERT!! "Can I ask why?"
"Yea, it was just drugs. And assault. I mean this guy bought some shit from me and then he didn't wanna pay me so I kicked his ass. And then he ratted on me to the cops so he wouldn't have to pay me, and I went to prison."

Well that went south quickly.

So, felony drug and assault charges. Lovely.
The rest of the date is irrelevant. After being informed that I was indeed on a date with an ex-con, I figured, How much worse can it get? So I let him buy me a couple drinks and when I thought it wouldn't be impolite to take my leave, I let him walk to me to my car (despite my protestations). He was quite tipsy by this point and kept asking when he was going to see me again, and he even tried to kiss me! UGH. I turned away and quickly closed the door to my car. He walked back to the bar. Alone.
He texted me the next morning, and I figured it wouldn't be very nice to prolong his misery, so I just said, "Look, you seem like a nice guy, but chemistry is really important to me, and I just wasn't feelin' it. But good luck!"
I also wasn't feeling his smoker's teeth, or his prison tats, but that's neither here nor there. He took the well though I think. At least, he didn't act crazy. He just said he appreciated my honesty.

Now after a date with an ex-con, do you think I continued to use Tinder?? Unfortunately, the answer is yes. I'll tell you all about my next date in my next post.


Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Strangers

Sorry my last post was so weepy. This is the first time I've logged into the blog since I posted that, and I definitely was going through some depression. I think it was mostly the death of my grandfather. I still can't think about him being gone without tearing up. He's the closest person to me that I've lost, and I miss him terribly. But things have gotten a bit better. I'm not depressed anymore anyway. It's just hard for me to blog, because it requires me to examine my life from an inward and exploratory perspective, and honestly, that does tend to make me a bit depressed. So I'm trying to live more in the now. And I'm trying to get out more, and put myself out there more. But it's very difficult. Being in your 30's sucks. I don't know where everyone gets off telling you it's gonna be so great, cuz it's totally not. I'm too old to be irresponsible, hell, I'm too old to WANT to be irresponsible. And the weight of all my responsibilities is crushing! But I don't really feel like an adult yet. I'm still struggling financially and with my own identity, and I'm still single, of course. So it kind of seems like I'm just in limbo, waiting for things to distribute evenly so I can quit this balancing act that is my life. ((Sigh)) But I'm looking ahead, and I'm trying.
Anyway, today I was listening to this Tove Lo song where she says,

Lovers
Into friends
Move on
To strangers

And my brain just took off with that. How weird is it that you can be in love with someone, be incredibly intimate with them, know all their nooks and crannies and secrets, and then BAM! One day, you're complete strangers. It's so unfathomable, isn't it? It makes me quite sad actually. But maybe that's just because I'm alone. But still though, something has been lost, and that's sad. Often it's for the best, but...I dunno. To think about how you can be so close with someone and never expect it to go away, but it does sometimes.
For those of you who don't know Tove Lo, or only know her single, Talking Bodies, I actually came across her album, Queen of the Clouds, a little over a year ago, and it's really amazing. I listened to nothing but that album for like 2 weeks. So check it out if you haven't already.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Every day I feel myself drifting further and further away from myself. Away from my life as I knew it in general. I prefer to be alone most of the time. Communicating with people, even just on this level, has begun to feel like a chore. It's not that I prefer my own company, because I find even that quite disappointing these days. I just can't seem to muster up the desire to go outside myself. To go outside my house even. My job is a relatively solitary one. The days pass in a blur of strangers' faces. Sometimes it's almost like I'm in a foreign country, where I can't talk to anyone else because I'm the only one who doesn't speak the native language. So I barely acknowledge these strangers, and they might notice me and offer a greeting, but it never extends beyond that.
My friend Amanda came to visit from Chicago this week. Even though I've never really considered her a good friend, and I know that we get along best when we don't spend lots of consecutive time together, I found myself picking her apart and constantly annoyed by her presence in my house. She eats so much, and constantly. She doesn't brush her teeth at night. She never seemed to get my hints when I wanted to just be left alone. Her singing was constant, and fucking awful. I would rather drive in silence than be forced to listen to her sing off-key. She disrupted my routine, and left her coffee cup in the living room, and didn't put her plates in the dishwasher, and left doors open and lights on. I was so relieved when I finally dropped her at the airport, I literally cried. I felt like I'd been holding it in the whole time she was here.
My grandpa died two weeks ago, and at first I welcomed the grief and sadness, because why not? But now I feel like it has snowballed, and it's threatening to completely consume me. My dissatisfaction with my life, the stress of drowning in debt from student loans, and living paycheck to paycheck, the thought of another year of being single (2014 made 6), my loneliness, and yet my unwillingness to be around people... I feel like all I want is to just be left alone, but when presented with that thought, I get this overwhelming sense of despair. The only reason I'm writing this is because I have no one else to tell.