Archive for January, 2012

Gordon

I have a Gordon.  He is my associate.  He does just about anything I ask of him.  He seldom questions me.  He goes that extra mile. 

He will even pick up my girls from school when I am in court or he knows they need a ride home. 

In the past he and I have had our differences.  He quit working for me.  I went home and cried into my pillow.  He and my head paralegal left their employment for bigger and better things.  The two of them tagged teamed me one afternoon.  They were very unhappy about this.  They were very unhappy about that.  I felt this, of course, was all so very unfair.  All of their criticism shot out at me was hard and direct.  I was defensive. 

 

My response after listening to an hour of how horrible things were was simply, “If you are unhappy you need to just leave.”

The things that needed fixing—well the they weren’t going to get fixed immediately.   

I deserved some of it.  Most of it (I still believe) was overly harsh and cruel.

On that next Monday they both packed up their offices and left.

That summer was a very hard summer for me.  I inherited another 100 files on top of the 200 I already had.  I felt abandoned and alone.  I was desperate for good office help.  I needed someone very loyal to help me.  I worked every weekend that horrible summer.  I had that much legal work to keep up on.  This added work burden did not help my failing marriage. When I went home to discuss my days my husband didn’t want to hear about them. 

It, of course, was all my fault.  I was definitely a bitch.  Otherwise my staff wouldn’t have quit.  My loyal husband was sick and tired of me working weekends.  My place was at home where I should be cooking him his dinner.

(My lovely Uncle came and helped.  He worked for me for free that entire summer)

I didn’t get mad at Gordon.  I knew that Gordon needed to try it alone.  He needed to see how hard it was to run a law firm and make money.  He needed to try it his way. 

Gordon is a wonderful person.  He is honest and ethical.  He really cares about his work. 

But he didn’t get it.

Gordon is also slow and he isn’t a rain maker.

In the end—Gordon really couldn’t make it on his own. 

I learned from the girls he was working a part-time job in town.  When they went into the local business they told me he ducked shamefully into the back. 

I knew from water cooler talk he wasn’t making it.

The funny thing about me is I really try and not to hold a grudge. 

I was trying to be objective.  I understood him.  I understood why he quit. 

Gordon did not understand me. 
He didn’t understand the way that I was.  He didn’t get why I needed to be the way that I was.

I knew that he would understand now. 

He would get it now.

All the responsibility.  All the worry.  All the work.  Long hours.  Little pay.  People suck you dry with all of their problems. 

And yes, I am far from perfect……..but I know…… You have to be charming.  You have to be ruthless.  You have to win.  You have to be good.  You have to collect fees.  You have to be put together when you are barely holding on.  You are eating a sandwich on the way to court while reading a court file.  You are talking on two phones and e-mailing.

There is never enough time.  There is never enough money.

I don’t remember who called who.  I just remembered sometime after the girls told me he was ducking them that I asked him in a phone conversation if he would want his old job back. 

He could come and work with my Uncle and I.  His office was still empty.  I would love to have him back.

He thought that might be a good idea.  He would love to come back.

He was now a different Gordon.  This man did not complain.  This man did any task asked.  He made collection calls.  He drafted any and all paperwork.  He defended me to clients who seemed disappointed in my work.  He defends me like no other man has ever defended me.   Even when my crazy husband called him at 2 a.m. one morning when my personal life was coming all undone.  My husband accusing us of having an affair.

Gordon so calm and rationale (bombs could go off and he would just walk slowly through it all).  “No. Jodi isn’t the type of person that would do that to you.”

Was his response.  “Plus she really doesn’t have a lot of extra free time……”

Gordon runs to the bank and even does the office dishes.

When he was sick and needed an operation our firm paid his salary for six months.  This was not an easy task.  If Gordon doesn’t bill I can’t collect.  I make money off of his time.  I went to see him in the hospital.  After that visit I went into the hallway and cried.  I wasn’t sure if he was going to continue to live.  I didn’t know what I would do in the office without him. 

I made sure he still got paid.  I worked longer hours.  I convinced my partner not to cut off his salary.  I promised Jonathan that I would pull his weight. 

I love Gordon.  I love him like a brother. 

This new humble and appreciative man. 

He worries about me and my girls.

He is my friend and a true gift.

He makes me feel safe here at work.  I know I can count on him.  He helps me be a better person.

He makes me think about pride and second chances.  This was a time I was able to set my pride aside.  This was a time he had to set his pride aside.  We both gave ourselves a second chance.  We were both vested.  We both had something to gain.  We both had something to lose.

He is a good man.  He is a good friend.


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Insecurity.

I am in a familiar spot.  The dreams come and they are disturbing.  I know there are layers.
I don’t want to look at them. 

I am looking at my insecurity.
These things that should be told to Father Tony in my confession. 

I like when others share their thoughts with me.  Jarek sates he is a better person when he is in a loving relationship.  I can identify with that.  I like to think that am also a better person, for myself and for this world, when I know I have someone I can truly trust and rely on. 

I want to feel safe, connected and close to someone. 

But that is also my fear.  To be close–I have to trust and to open up. 

I have to trust that the person will be truly kind, safe and good. 

I tell myself that I have to re-learn how to trust. 
I know deep down this is nearly impossible.
I can’t even trust myself to figure out whom to trust.

I am afraid to leave plan B at the door.  I have learned to always have a back-up plan.  You should always have an escape route. 

I am doing my mental check list to make sure: Do I have my money, my wallet and my keys?

He says he is going to be at the airport. 
But after hours and two pay-phone calls later—he is still not here. 

I know the truth.  A realization that formulates in the back of my brain.  It’s like warm running tap water. 
He is not coming despite his assurances that he would.  That was the entire plan.

***************************************************
We are now officially dating.  He wants sex.  We have that private and close discussion.  Disclosures are made.  My husband has been the only man I have ever sexually known.  He knows vital, biological and personal information.  For me this is a delicious prospect—I haven’t felt loved or appreciated in forever.  How long has it been?  I tell myself it has been months, (no wait), years.  

In return he promises, if we have sex, he won’t ejaculate inside of me. 

He knows I don’t want a baby now.  This is not the place and/or time to bring a child into this world.  I don’t want to be a mother in this state–in this way.   He knows full well I am Catholic.  He knows I think of promises, the church, sacrament and rings.  At this time I believe in the essence of a husband, a wife and a nuclear family. 
He tells me in these discussions that he doesn’t know if he wants a family or if he wants to buy a boat.  I am not asking him, nor do I demand, that he make any decisions.
**********************************************

When they change their mind they fail to inform me. 
I am left in a very bad spot.  There are no warning shots.  I don’t get three steps to any door.  No one is counting to ten.
 
I could have lined up a cab.  I could have stashed away extra needed cash.
I would have waited until I renewed my birth control prescription.

In this bed there is a great show.  It’s a Broadway play.
He takes great pains to go get a towel from his bathroom to wipe away non-existent sperm. 

I am in a panic.  He is telling me by his actions he didn’t do what I think he just did. 
I do not forget his look. I do not forget his words.  I do not forget lips that form a weird small smile.

It is not long after that I am facing his truth.  I nearly faint in my bathtub.
I am back at that airport.  It’s another splash of warm tap water.

Over those weeks I inform him several times that I am sick.  I am.  I think of my work.  I think of my girls.  I think of my physical and mental state.  I am secretly desperate.  I ask him to tell me how much he loves me.  I ask him to write it down in a letter.  I want to read it.  I want to read and re-read sweet words.  I think this would be some sort of redemption.  It would help me in making or formulating a decision.  I ask him many things.  I ask him to give up some of his evenings so we can spend more time together.

He ignores all these requests. 
He is too busy with his work.  He is acting very distant and very strange.  He won’t respond to any of my requests. 

What kind of man does this?  I ask myself this very question. 

Answers are found in research. There are publications on this issue.  There are men who try and trap a woman into a relationship.  They do this by deceiving her.  They mess with her birth control.  They put holes in their condoms.  They also promise to withdraw and intentionally do not.

My heart is telling me —this is not who this man really is. 
My mind is telling me— this man is exactly what this is.

(There was a time when our yellow lab got loose and killed a fawn.  I couldn’t stop the dog.  The lab was too quick and fast.  In one minute the fawn was desperately bleating and the next it was so very quite, warm and still)

I am so messed up.   I am so lost and alone.
I do not sleep for many nights.  I think of that lab and that fawn. 
 
I am not going to mast any child to this deception.  I won’t mast myself to this kind, nature or type of man.

In past centuries women could drink a potion. 
Today we can swallow two pills.

I am left with a cavity so deep, treacherous and dark.

I know all the devils and angels in this universe could not fill it.

And that redemption does not exist.

 


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The Mechanical Bull

I did it.  I finally rode one.  It was crazy fun.  Of course I got bucked off. 

To my credit it was a great exit.  I landed squarely on my feet.

It was another girls night out.  Amy and I went to meet up with my best friend from high school.  In that we made more friends.

We met a new gal named Val.  Val squarely states:  “I love to laugh until my cheeks hurt.”

The Twisted Bull was Amy’s idea.  She found it on the internet.  Trish already had a women’s group getting together.  When we first arrived at the Twisted Bull I found Trish and her group.  I took one look and thought “Oh no.”  Trish is so much fun but these women looked lost, uncomfortable, unhappy and so very out of place.  One was a college dean.  The others were mothers and staunch church goers.  I wondered if they were Baptists or Seventh Day Adventists.  It was their hair, their clothes, their dress.  No one even tried to look country.

At this point I am glad I decided to wear my cowboy boots.

Their arms remain crossed against their chest.  They are drinking wine coolers and water.

This trashy bar is full of tattooed and beer gutted men.  The women look worn.  Everyone, (except the church group), has on hats, boots and some sort of dazzling rhinestones. 

These pristine women look like they are afraid they might be spotted by the internet police.  They look like they just got splashed with red wine wearing a white pantsuit.  I find myself wondering if they carry their own travel bottle of hand sanitizer.  I am waiting for one of them to pull it out.

When cameras appear I feel them twitch—that someone might take a picture and upload them to face book. 
They look–well–quite frankly mortified.

Because Amy and I seem to like this bar they distance themselves.  We do not partake in their gossip about teenaged girls dressing inappropriately.  I supposed this is further indication that we shouldn’t be trusted.  This group becomes weary of me.  The dean pulls her chair a little bit further away from mine.  I have three teenaged girls—I think they should be able to wear anything they want.  I don’t feel it’s right to define my girls. 

We were saved the minute Val arrived.  She wants to get it on.  So we have no problem when she starts ordering shots.  We get beads.  We shoot more shots.  We talk and laugh.  I make it known I am going to ride the bull.

It is amazing what one person can add to the mix.  It is amazing how Val’s humor and acceptance of our situation made this night so much more—-well—fun.

We danced.  The others wouldn’t dance.  We drank beers out of pitchers.  The others wouldn’t drink beer out of pitchers.  We talked about what we want to do.  Where we want to go.  What we want to see. 

Finally, I give up trying to talk to the others.  They are clearly not happy.  They are just plain boring.  They are not fun.  I think they should just pack it in and go home.  Not much long after they finally do.

We talked to our waitress.  This girl dressed in skimpy underwear wearing chaps and a cowgirl hat.  She is nice and kind.  I talked to the mechanical bull operator.  I talked to some cowboys and even danced with a farmer.

These women didn’t approve.  But they weren’t getting it.  To take this experience in.  To enjoy the differences of these people.  To listen to this music.  To look at well worn weathered hands and tattooed arms.

A man comes up.  He wants to dance with Sue.  You see them all pull away from him and shake their heads.  I see all their 10K wedding bands. 

This guy doesn’t stand a chance.

Trish shouts out—“Jodi—Jodi will dance.”

Yes.  Yes I love to dance.

I see them judge him.  I already have.

I don’t have anything in common with most of the people in this bar.  I work in a nice clean office.  I use a computer, paper, and pens as tools.  I wear Calvin Kline.  I tote a briefcase.  My employment hazards consist of too much coffee and paper cuts.  I have over $200,000.00 of education under my belt.

I know what he is by looking at him.  He sports a John Deere hat.  His body is calloused.  His hands are worn and hard.  He looks weathered like thick tree bark.   

I am not one that is going to be rude to him.  This one harmless dance.  The college dean is cringing.  

This man is a perfect gentleman.  He alreadly knows nothing is going past this dance.

Amy and I are the last of our group to leave.  We end up having a Grand Coney breakfast.  I need my breakfast burrito fix.  We discuss the nights events.  Their apparent stiffness and disapproval.  How Val changed the game.  How someone can be a lighted sparkler.

We both agreed we shouldn’t have drank so much beer.  I contemplate going to the Y.  I feel beer guilt for a moment.

I think about this life and what we take from it.  I think how we affect others and how they feel by what we say and how we say it. 

Disapproval and distaste has it’s own form of contamination.  It can be like soil soaked in crude oil.

Ride the bull.  Drink the shot.  Wear the beads. Dance with a farmer wearing plaid and a John Deere cap. 

I think of lines drawn in the sand and how we all have our own lines.  I see where my lines are drawn and how sometimes I erase them pushing myself further across them.   I was judging the other women for having their lines drawn miles back.  I justify my reaction because I believe they are missing out on a part of life.  They are happy to miss out.  So rigid in their definitions. 

 

O.K.—-That is their path and their way.

We all draw our own lines. We are free to choose our thoughts.  Thoughts at times, become our actions, which in turn define our character.

I know who I am.  I know who I want to become.  I know what I want to accomplish.  I know with whom I want to spend my time with.   I want to be like Val a person who dares to show up and then sparkles up our night.

I like the person I see in the mirror.  She is a good person.  She likes to laugh and have fun.  She is a good friend and a confidant. She is a good hardworking mother.  She cares about what she does and genuinely likes life and the people in it.

And she is kind to that farmer and she has the moxie to get in and ride a mechanical bull.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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The Journey Begins

I am a forty-two year old gay man whose life has been one of satisfaction and sorrow.  Easy would not be a word that I would choose to describe my journey, but then again whose journey is easy?  I really don’t care to rehash the long past, so I will start with the present.  I am at a low point in my personal life at the present time, but I am trying to move forward with the hope of filling this empty cup of mine.

After many years of struggle to find what really brings me satisfaction, I have come to the conclusion that I am a stronger, happier, and healthier person when I am in an intimate relationship.  The dynamics of that intimate relationship include physical affection, meaningful communication, mutual respect, and trust.  Recently, however, my relationship with a man I thought was becoming my life partner ended quite suddenly.  He was simply headed down a path he was not ready to go.  And as much as his decision was not one I expected or hoped for, I was able to remember what brought us together in the first place – our intimate friendship.  And so that is what I concentrate on, renewing that friendship and letting go of the possibility of a lifetime partnership.

I currently find myself standing on a steep slope in a picturesque valley.  I see the beauty around me, but I do not seem to be participating in that beauty.  It is this feeling of emptiness and loneliness that has caused me to want to share my thoughts, my hopes, and my desire to seek out a way to inner peace.

Recently I have been thinking (often well into the night) about what it is that is missing now that I am no longer in a relationship.  Clearly the thing I miss most are the nights spent wrapped in my lover’s arms.  It was in that nightly embrace that I felt safe and secure.  That security is now gone, and so frankly is my ability to sleep.  That physical touch and affection with the person I was most secure is such an important ingredient for the wellbeing of my soul.  The desire to have that again is incredibly strong.  Yes it’s true that I could run out and find someone to satisfy me physically, but I would not experience the safety and security that I so desire.  As a result, I have chosen to “lay low” and look for new friends and hobbies that will help ease the loneliness I feel.

So how does one try to find contentment until that security and affection return?  I don’t know; this is the question I am trying to answer.  I have found myself lying in bed each evening, sometimes just thinking and other times writing in my journal.  I realized that after six weeks of doing this, however, I was not feeling much better.  I love writing, but I found myself writing the same thing over and over again.  That is not progress.

What has made this change so difficult for me is that I had to give up one of my passions.  It was the only way to ensure that the man I love and consider to be my best friend would be comfortable in his own place of employment.  In letting go of my passion, I also had to let go of people who I considered my friends.  I think that losing some mutual friends is one of the unavoidable tragedies that accompany the dissolution of a partnership.  I expected that I would have received much more support from those mutual friends, but frankly, only one of them has attempted to console me regularly.  I appreciate her as she has been persistent, but I also know that she can only do so much as she is too close to the situation.

It is not that I wanted to talk to mutual friends about the circumstances surrounding the ending of my relationship; rather, I wanted to know that these people would be willing to continually reach out to me and be there when I needed them.  What I found was that only two people reached out to me beyond the first week following the ending of my relationship.  Where did they all go?  What must have they been thinking?  I am sure I am partially at fault for this, as I would not share with them what happened in the relationship.  You see, I couldn’t.  If I did, word could accidentally get out to the community and my former partner could have lost his livelihood.  Furthermore I know that if this loss is difficult for me, then it may be difficult for our mutual friends as well.  Since these are mutual friends, I have also had to remember that anything I say to them may get repeated and perhaps not how I said it or how I meant it to be received.  This can really botch up any headway I’ve made in terms of establishing a close friendship with my ex.  In the past I have learned that often in misguided attempts to assure me that they are on my side, these mutual friends are likely to take a shot or two at my ex.  I do not want this to happen as his decision to leave me was hard enough for him, and this would only make matters worse.  As a result, I have chosen to remain silent with our mutual friends.  I believe this is the best possible choice.  I have chosen to share my fears, my uncertainty, and my sadness with a clergyman and a couple of acquaintances of mine who do not know my ex.  This has been helpful.  Again, the loneliness has not gone away; but I have been able to accept the fact that my partnership is over and that I must now concentrate on healing this sense of loss and renewing my sense of friendship.  It is only the beginning of a difficult journey.


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Sharing My Journey

I was here a year ago to share my life’s journey. It was my hope then that my story might help anyone who might be struggling with his or her own journey. Unfortunately, I did not know how to get my story out to others, so it went largely unnoticed. Today, Thanksgiving Day 2011, I decided to try again. It is with hope and gratefulness in my heart that I open my life to anyone who is interested. In my sharing, I hope to connect with the lives and hopes of others.

Point, set, match.

I loved tennis.  I got to be pretty good at it.  Good enough to walk on and play the last slot on the  local junior college women’s tennis team. I really had no tennis club membership or training.  Just a few sports camps and a few lessons here and there.  I played in high school and my extra forced practices consisted of hitting a ball against our garage door or against a tennis wall. 

It was my mother who discovered the junior college women’s team and suggested I continue to play.  She set up an interview.  The coach allowed me to try out. 

I filled in the last slot securing my place.  I was the worst player on our team. 

In those two years of play I traveled all over the state of Michigan.  Our team won nearly all of our meets.  We were now going to Nationals in Tempe. 

Most of my teammates liked me well enough.  They tolerated my oddness.  I was the smartest on the team and was appointed our official tutor.  My job was to keep our number one and sometimes number two singles player, Kelly, eligible to play.  Coach Nelson pulled me aside and told me he needed me to keep her academically eligible.  Would I help? 

Of course I would. 

I fit this in on top of my part-time job, my studies, and of course, our daily tennis practice. 

My thoughts of Kelly were unkind in this sense: I thought she was unfortunately dumb.  I found myself struggling to give her my respect.  For the most part I did like her.  She was very athletic and pretty.  She was a great tennis star.  But I pitied her.  How could someone be that unbelievably stupid?  On our weekly academic meetings I would assist her with her papers, editing, and asking her questions.  She was truly grateful for my help.  When she gushed and admired me for my smartness —I would feel guilty for all those thoughts I held about her.  I was conflicted. 

After our meetings I often muttered prayers to the Divine: Thank you for not making me stupid.

I wouldn’t have exchanged my academic talents to be better on the court.  I loved tennis more as a social bonding activity.  I also liked the feel of that ball hitting my sweet spot and nailing the back corner of the court.  It felt good when my opponent was unable return it.  Every hit was a mental challenge to see if I could control the ball and put it where I wanted to.  I knew of my limitations.  I had no Wimbledon desires. 

On the team I had created an enemy.  Colleen was slotted number one.  She had a full ride pending at Ferris.  One day coach called her and I up.

“You two are going to match up.”
The whole team was we gotta see this:  This is the biggest joke. 

Coach had full team attention. 

“This is going to be a complete waste of Colleen’s practice time.”  Colleen was talking about herself in the third person.

I am like, “Aww really coach this isn’t necessary.”  But you didn’t talk back to coach. 

I guess I wasn’t as easy to defeat as she or the team thought.   Maybe coach knew this.  In the end she was stronger and more powerful in her strokes and the match ended as predicted.  But my teammates saw parts of our match.  I, in part, had humiliated her.

Her shots were fast and powerful. My returns were calculated and placed.  My serves were extra soft and she couldn’t adjust—she belted them past the back line.  I had her running to the front of the net and placed the ball barely over it–again her power was her weakness.

She wasn’t so quick to adjust.

Eyes become darker and hard–you can see a glint in them when someone becomes pissed.  My apparent smiling did not help the situation.

After the practice session I learned to steer clear of Colleen.  Her verbal jabs were pointed and continual.  I continued to keep my mouth shut.

We made it to Nationals and the school flew us to Tempe, Arizona.  I was slotted to play the last position and I was the only one at the end of the tournament up for a trophy in the finals round.  Coach had promised everyone a trip into Mexico if we finished early (i.e. everyone lost) but I was holding us up.  I pulled coach aside.  “Look I will stay and play—- take them to Mexico.” 

Colleen had never been.  That’s all she talked about.

Coach said “No. you play we stay.”

His reasoning made no sense to me.  I felt my hand was being forced.  I had been to Mexico so many times in my childhood.  I had been to Mexico City and Acapulco in high school.  I really wanted to stay and play. 

My team wanted to go to Mexico.

I was not going to play tennis as a career.  I was going to the University of Michigan.  I had some academic scholarships.  Tennis was a diversion.

The answer was apparent.  My wants were less important.

Many of the girls on my team had never even traveled out of state and if they had it was Florida.

If this is how coach is calling it—- I was throwing the match.

It’s another one of my life’s —“what ifs—why wouldn’t coach give me the space to just be?”

That night it was a full blown bar party. A celebration of the week and season end.  We were going to leave for the border at 9 a.m.  I had never been out this late in the States.  It was dancing and drinks.   

There he was.  Sitting at the bar in the form of a Delta Airline Pilot.  Colleen points him out.  Shouts something his way.

He was game show host handsome.  After a minute of introductions he takes us all in.  He sits across from me.  He wants to know my story.

Colleen’s face turns dark.

Handsome has it’s own form of intoxication.  It’s deceiving, enticing, luring.  I am finding my worth in this man’s attention.   Flattery has it’s own form of currency.  I have never met anyone in real life as handsome as this man.

My experience was limited to boys ranging from eighteen to twenty-two.  I am not really sure what to do.  I don’t know what to do when he is buying us all drinks.  Cool beers loosen inhibitions and tied up tongues.

The reality of a situation becomes real when you find yourself in a hotel room half naked.  He is crooning all sorts of things into my ear.  His words are sickly sweet.  I am feeling this is off—this is way too much sugar. 

True to form, I find myself asking questions: What am I really doing?  Why am I really here?  Isn’t this going on a little far?  I know this is really not what I want.”

I wasn’t afraid of him.  I wasn’t afraid for myself.
(my future self would learn to know this fear)

Funny how such an instantaneous desire lasts as long as a flaming match.  How his words were falling empty and flat.  My thoughts dampen my physical fire.  There are real feelings and repercussions. I was now thinking things through.  I am speaking out loud. 

Then that awkward conversation takes place.

There is that moment I feel guilty, foolish and small. 
There is a moment of his frustration.  There is his apparent resignation to my current stance on this situation. 

Now he tells me about a child and wife in California.
His reaction to my silly rejection. 

It was a sound sigh and click of a light switch. I am putting on my cowboy boots and slipping though that hotel door.

***********************
It’s cool outside and the sky is grey.  In a few hours it will be a ride across the border in a rented team van.  It will be lunch in Mexico.  We will be eating at an out door café. 

I am filling up on tortillas, rice and beans.  I am drinking beers with Kelly and Nikki. 
Colleen continues to shoot me her evil glares. 

For the most part the team is having a wonderful day.

I decide I am really O.K.

I am glad I didn’t play that final match.  I am glad I decided not to stay.

 

 

 

 


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Resolution.

On New Year’s Eve I took a moment, as so many people do, to reflect back on the prior year.  It occurred to me that if time did not pass, if we did not have these mile markers, we would neither look back nor push forward.  What would be the point of pushing forward if we had no sense of how time passes?  Or how things change?  We would be unaware of how much we could accomplish.

 

Jodi and I began this blog about a year ago.  In that time we have both been pushing forward.  But now, in looking back, I see how far I have come.  The realization encourages me to continue moving forward.  At the same time, I appreciate the journey so far.

 

It is harder for me to write now.  I have exorcised enough demons.  I don’t feel the same weight upon me that I did when we began.  Now a bad day is just a bad day.  I am hurt or angry or lonely and then it passes.  I dedicated enough time and energy to sorting out the past and how I arrived here.  Whether or not I agree with my “youthful” decisions, they are mine and I can live with them.  There were lessons to be gleaned from each one.  They will continue to reveal themselves, but I have to wait for them.  I can’t purposefully examine them any longer. These lessons are hidden, like a 3-D picture concealed within a pattern.  They will be there when I least expect to find them.

 

For years, my questions have been about the past and the future.  How could I have done that better?  Where will I go from here?

 

My head is tired.  And I mean that in a good way.  As Socrates said, “the unexamined life is not worth living.”  I have examined.  I have reflected, and I have hypothesized.  I have sifted through all the information I have and reached all the conclusions I can.

 

I need a bigger boat.

 

I have let go of the past.  I don’t want to continue looking for dark moments just so I have something to write about.  I hope they pass me by.  And if that means I write less, then I write less.

 

I am not ready for the future.  It too will reveal itself when I least expect it; or when I find myself in the middle of it.

 

I want to enjoy the present.  I want to explore.  I want to laugh.  I want to be.

 

And so I shall.