The Seeker

For most of my life, at least what I can remember of it, I’ve been a Seeker.

A Seeker of knowledge, in that I love to always learn new things. I have a gift for remembering seemingly useless trivia, earning me one of my many nicknames. “The Queen of Useless Knowledge”. But, I also constantly search for new wisdom to fill my brain, of all sorts, be it historical, medical, scientific, supernatural, esoteric, you name it.

I used to seek for affirmation and approbation, as well. Other people’s opinions of me were almost more real than my own, and would color how I viewed everything, from how I acted, to how I felt about myself, and the world around me. I don’t do that anymore, because I discovered that I was never going to receive what I needed in life that way – SELF acceptance and love. I had to learn, over and over, that no one else’s opinions of me mattered, only my own. It took me a long time to realize that, but I’m better now for it. 

And, I’ve always been a Seeker of love. Love of family and friends, as well as that of romantic love from someone else.

That’s…been a lot harder to find.

I thought I had it in both of my marriages, only to be proven wrong. The first one, well, I’m not sure he knows what loving someone else means, that you have to give up a part of yourself to the other person, and that it’s about being there for each other, not just when things are easy, but most importantly, when things are bad. He never seemed to get that, so I had to walk away. Twice. It took me over 20 years, and 2 attempts at a relationship with him to get that through my head, but it finally stuck.

The second ex-husband…well, he hoarded all his love for our son, thinking that, well, since he married me, he didn’t have to actually love me anymore, since marriage says forever, right? All the hard work was done while we dated, so now he could sit back & watch me do all the work in the relationship. No. Just – no.  

And, I’ve had other relationships since, which have all fallen apart, for one reason or another. 

So, I’ve been doing some hard contemplation, lately. 

About what I truly want.

About how I’m going to get it.

And about what I’ve been doing up until now, that’s prevented me from truly Finding what I’ve been Seeking.

I settle.

Because there’s still a part of me that feels as though I’m not worth it. That…if all these men can leave me, that the fault must be in me, somewhere.

And, to a certain extent, that’s correct.

The fault does lie in me.

Because I settle.

If I’m truly going to find Love – yes, with a capital letter – then I have to make some changes.

First – no more settling for less than what I want.

If I want real love, the kind that will stay, will fight for a relationship with me, the kind that will work with me to keep the relationship a good one…I HAVE to act, and believe, that I deserve it.

No more “hanging out and hooking up”.

No more accepting relationships that have no future.

If I want Love, Marriage and Forever, and I do, (no pun intended), then I have to stop letting myself settle for anything less.

I will find Love again, someday. Maybe not today, or tomorrow, next week, or even within the next year.

But I will stop settling for its pale cousin.

Because I am a Seeker.

And I will Find another, someday.

The Newest Little Monkey

Ok, so I’m a little behind with this post, but it’s not my fault.

Honest.

I have a new grandson.

Everybody say hi to Maxwell!

His Mama (EldestDaughter) calls him “Monkey”, because she says he gets this little wrinkle in his forehead when he’s thinking really hard, or confused, or working on his next magnum opus, that makes him look like a baby monkey.

He was born 2/12/2017 in Washington state, where ED is now living with her SO & Schnicklefritz.

And I didn’t get to be there.

*sniffle*

But, he’s healthy, happy, & adjusting to life on the outside, according to all accounts, which is all I can ask for.

I DO get to see them all when they’ll come home for OnlySon’s graduation in May.

*BIG YAY & high five!*

So, for now, I have to survive without baby snuggles & will live vicariously through texted pictures & a recently set up weekly Skype date.

And, I’ll have to revamp my ABCs I wrote when Schnicklefritz was born, & tailor some much-needed “Gramma wisdom” for this newest addition to the zoo.

*I feel a challenge coming on*

For now, here’s some pictures I’ve wheedled out of my daughter!

Who is this person holding me? A brother, you say? Ok, I’ll start working on my “little brother pestering” skill set now.

Here’s this “big brother” person again… Are you sure he needed to follow us home, Mom?  Well, at least he seems to like me somewhat, so maybe this could work.

You know, I’m not too sure about this whole “being outside” thing, Mom & Dad…couldn’t I have just stayed where I was? I was kinda comfy there.

No snark…just awwwwwwwwwe…

*sniffle* 

I wanna snuggle him!

Selling my Soul

My emotions have been a rollercoaster lately, not gonna lie.

And I don’t see the situation changing in the near future. 

But, today at work, I had a “minipiphany”. 

I was talking to a coworker about my current relationship situation (there’s only 1 there who gets to, or, maybe, is forced to listen to my relationship foibles & follies – Because I know she’ll keep shut about it), & while I was describing the phone conversation I had with E on Saturday night, I figured something out.

Ok, a little back story music, if you please, maestro…

A few years ago, the first time I ventured into the world of online dating, I met – the Dragon. That is my nickname for him here, & it fits for many reasons, none of which are pertinent to this particular story. We got along very well, even though he is living on a small island in the Caribbean, so is geographically inconvenient. We spent a lot of time talking online, via Skype, & had even planned a meet up.

There was a period where he disappeared for about 6 months, due to some obligations that were very hush hush, & I didn’t know where he’d gone, or even if he was alive or dead.  After 6 months of messaging, emailing, & attempting contact via text, I finally decided that he was probably gone for good, & tried online dating again. 

Meeting E. 

Shortly after, the Dragon showed back up, & as happy as I was to see him, I did tell him that I’d met someone, & felt I owed it to E to see where it went. (E had already told me he loved me, & wanted to marry me- fast, I know. It made me nervous, & I wasn’t sure I wanted to move that fast. Ironic, that)

The Dragon told me that he couldn’t get into any kind of relationship anyway, after what had happened in his last, he felt too vulnerable, & exited stage left.

It hurt me. A lot. In the time we’d known each other, I had come to think of him as Chosen Family, & that doesn’t get said about very many people. But, I’ve only ever wanted him to be happy, so had to let go, instead of begging him to stay.

Fast forward to December, 2016.

I dreamt about the Dragon, & knew I needed to contact him, to let him know I’d never forgotten him. I waited till after the New Year, fearful of rejection, but I sent off an email.

He responded positively, & we’ve exchanged a couple of emails since.

About this same time, I’d told E that I was done waiting, done being last place to everything else, & I had “drawn the line where I said No More.” 

These 2 events were mutually exclusive, having no bearing on one another.

BUT, getting back to today’s miniature revelation.

I told the coworker that if E showed up on my doorstep tomorrow, I didn’t know what I’d do. After all the broken promises, the shattered trust, I honestly don’t know if I can get myself back into that relationship far enough to ever trust him again.

And I realized…

If the Dragon showed up at my door tomorrow…

I know exactly what my decision would be.  I’d choose him. Every time. In whatever capacity he needed me to fill in his life. Friend, pen pal, confidante, family, lover, you get the picture.

So, coworker said “Ok, so there’s your answer. Tell E you’re out.” 

But, here’s where I am weak. Here’s where I fall apart.

E still wants to marry me. 

He says he loves me, & will always love me. He wants forever. (If he can ever fucking get here) 

I am 46.

And overweight, & have health issues, & mental issues like anxiety & depression.

Gods…

I feel weak even saying this, & I want to cry, & kick myself, & just crawl in a hole.

Part of me wants to stay with E…simply because I don’t think anyone will ever make me this offer of marriage & forever, ever again.

And I don’t want to be alone forever.

I know someone who would be happy to be FWB, but doesn’t want monogamy & commitment. 

I do. I want monogamy. I want commitment. I want forever.

I’ll never get to have a 50th anniversary with anyone. 

But, I want to have anniversaries again.

And, I have no idea whether the Dragon will stay around this time, or if he’ll disappear again.

I don’t know what his feelings are at all, right now.

I wish I did, but I don’t.

And, there’s E. 

I can’t stand hurting anyone.

But someone’s going to end up being hurt by whatever decision I make.

It’s a foregone conclusion that I’ll end up hurting, either way.

There’s no winning.

If I tell E I’m out, I’ll hurt him, hurt myself, & possibly end up alone for the rest of my life. If I stay with him, I feel as though I would possibly be selling my soul to prevent loneliness.

If I tell the Dragon how I feel, I could scare him off. If I tell him I’m staying with E, I’ll hurt him. I know it. And I could end up alone there, too, because dragons are unpredictable & skittish.

If I tell them both that I’m out, that I can’t take the whipsawing back & forth, the uncertainty, everyone ends up hurt.

So, what happens next? 

Stay tuned to see if I sell my soul, hand off my broken, twisted heart, or curl up into a defensive posture & roll away into the night, leaving all I know behind to start over somewhere else.

Not quite a rose ceremony…more like a bad emo poetry reading with stale cookies & knock off koolaid.

Fuck.

Panic Attacks and Pain

Last night was horrendous.

The man that I’ve been in a long distance relationship with for the past 3.5 years has been texting me pretty much non-stop, with me avoiding replying, trying to distance myself from the pain. I had told him months ago that I couldn’t take the distance anymore, & that my seeming lack of importance in his list of priorities, namely, that he’d never once, in those 3.5 years attempted to see me face to face, breaking promise after promise, was too much.  I couldn’t do it anymore, and it had to stop.

I succeeded in the not-replying for a week.

Guilt trips, anger, begging, bargaining, & even subtle threats coupled with accusations weren’t enough to get me to respond. In fact, it drove me further away.

Until last night.

And in the depths of remorse over the hurt I was causing another human being, I reached out.

What followed was a sobbing, wrenching, painful phone call that left me wrung out emotionally, & in the throes of a violent panic attack. 

I didn’t sleep last night.

Finally, after taking some medication to force me to sleep, I stole about 3 hours of rest this morning, only to wake in the middle of another panic attack.

Heart racing, short of breath, and shaking, I’ve been huddled in my house, constantly on the verge of tears, & unable to calm myself until just the last hour or so, when the anti-anxiety medication finally took over.

Now, numb & hollowed out, I don’t know what to do anymore.

Heart and head war with one another.

Logic and emotion cannot agree.

And the pain of either decision before me looms large, black and all-consuming.

Either way, someone will be in pain.

Either way, I will hurt.

And it will be me who causes it.

Can I run now?

Bonfire of the Sanity

I’ve never been a believer in the “bad luck” of Friday the 13th.

However…

Today, could have been the exception to that belief.

Men…can be so thoughtless, hurtful and cruel. (Yes, I’m sure women can be too, but since I’m not bisexual or gay, my romantic relationships have never involved the feminine gender)

Everything seemed to go up in flames today.

The man I’ve been talking to for 3.5 years? Well, on New Year’s Day, I told him that I wasn’t going to wait anymore. That I was tired of always coming in last place on the priority list. I’d told him months earlier that if he couldn’t make me a priority & actually keep his word by the end of 2016, that I was done.

The time lapsed, he still hasn’t decided that I’m important enough to merit meeting face to face, so…I ended it.

At least, on my side.

He…won’t stop texting & attempting to call. He’s furious that I’m actually sticking by what I said. 

He’s blaming me for the situation.

Every decision he’s made, he’s made on his own, for his own reasons, & tells me about them after he’s already decided & taken that step. How is this my fault?

So, I threw my phone in my purse & ignored him for most of the day.

I hate confrontation & arguments.

Cue the next thing.

Another man I know, who I dated in the past, starts sending me mixed messages. He’s never wanted the “forever” thing, so I never bothered to bring it up, knowing it was a moot point, & would never come to pass. I’ve never let myself say the “L” word with him, because I do want monogamy, commitment, & marriage again, someday. 

But today, in the emotional turmoil I was experiencing with E, I start getting messages from this other man, that sounded almost romantic & sentimental. (I say almost because I don’t know what to believe anymore with this, whether it was meant as a “haha-funny”, or if it was supposed to be taken for real).

I’m so messed up in the head right now.

PLUS, (yeah, there’s more)…

I sent an email the other day to a man I knew a few years ago, who I dreamt about, & felt compelled to contact. We were emotionally close at one time, and confided in each other a lot of personal stuff. We were close to seeing if we could “make a go of it” romantically, when he suddenly backed up & disappeared.  It destroyed me for a long time, & I’ve never completely gotten over the loss. Not just as a romantic prospect, but as a dear friend, & someone I’d come to think of as Chosen Family.

I didn’t expect a response at all, as he was pretty clear about not wanting any kind of relationship with anyone, ever. (Miles of bad relationship road behind him, & a fear of getting hurt again)

He responded, & wants to talk as soon as he returns from a work trip he had to go on.

Flaming unicorns on pogo sticks.

My sanity won’t take much more.

My brain is on fire, my heart is in pieces, and I can’t see the point of continuing with much of anything right now.
So, after I finish this post…

I’m putting down the phone, face down, so I don’t have to see it’s mocking screen…and I’m going to pour myself an adult beverage.

Or six.

No, I’m not laughing as I write this.

I’m completely fucking serious.

And I’m seriously completely fucked.

No Home

Something I figured out tonight… something I’d thought about before, wondered why many times…but never had an answer until now.

Why don’t I feel as “grown up” as most of the other 40-something’s I know? Why is it, that I feel so abnormal, so out of place with my peers?

Most of the people I know my age, talk about their jobs, their kids, their gardens & recipes. They talk about their spouse, & where they’re going for their next vacation, or about how the car “just isn’t running right, so I’d better take it in”. 

I hear them discussing things like regular adults, day to day stuff, “grown-up” stuff.

So why am I still stuck contemplating my navel, & why my relationships always seem to turn to shit?

Grief.  It’s grief. And the fact that most of those other adults don’t feel it all the time, as I seem to be.

Sure, I know it sounds odd, so let me explain my reasoning.

Grief – is Love with no place to go. It’s Loving, but not being able to give that Love to someone. Not having a “home” for it. Grief is having so much love, & never being able to show it, or having the one you love throw it away. It’s Feelings so strong you seem to crack at the seams, and they leak out of your face, sliding down your cheeks, only to fall to the floor. It’s the desolation of knowing that the Love you have, has nowhere to land, either because the one you love has passed, or simply left you behind.

Grief – is Love, lost and confused, spinning back on itself in the hope of finding resolution, only to discover there’s no doorway back to how it was before.

And these other adults, the people I watch, they don’t have to worry about Grief in that way. 

Because they have their purpose, they have a place for their love to go. They have their SO, their contented life, balanced &, for the most part, fairly whole. Grief, when it does strike, doesn’t consume their whole world. They’re able to get through it, because they have that balance, that Love with a Home to go to.

So, they talk about their gardens, and their weekends, their jobs & kids & pets & what they’re going to make for dinner.

And me?

Well, I know my home is not here. 

Not anymore.

Where it is, I don’t know. 

Someday, maybe, I’ll find a Home for my Love. Until then…

I am Grief.

Only on the blog will you find me this open. 

Out in the “Real World”… I’m fine.

Not Today

I just can’t hold onto the positive hopes.

Not today.

Because a couple of days ago, I told him that 3 1/2 years of waiting was enough. 3 1/2 years of late-night conversations, daily texts, occasional phone calls…but never a face to face meeting, was enough.  That 3 1/2 years of broken promises, one after another, was enough.  When words are only words, and never become deeds…how do you continue to believe in tomorrow?

Not today.

My heart is torn into pieces right now.  I know, everyone says…”It’ll change. You’ll find someone. Someone will come along and just sweep you off your feet.”

Not today.

Today, I mourn.

It’s over.

And it never even started.

This…THIS is why I have defensive walls so high and thick it takes a mountaineer to climb them.

Fucking men with their habit of ghosting, benching, promising & breaking, blowing me off, calling me “psycho” when I get upset after they refuse to live up to their word. Disappearing because of their own fears & insecurities, then laying it off on me as my fault because they can’t handle relationships & monogamy.

Goddess…I’m so tired of this.

I just want one man. One MAN, who can be an adult, is willing to commit, and can see that I’m worth more than just being a friend with benefits, or a hookup. I don’t want the games anymore.

And I don’t want to spend the rest of my life alone.

I’ll be just fine.

But not today.