Monday, March 28, 2011

putting up walls

He took my hand recently and said, "I am falling for you." Adventures in getting to know the artist thrill me even as they scare me. He is teaching me something important about myself: I am not easy to get close to. I didn't realize how effortlessly I put up walls but he knocks gently and searches for the door.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Most annoying legal exchange ever

Me, to law office: "I believe I have a $40 credit with you?"

Law office: "Yes."

Me: "Great, can you mail it to me then?"

Law office: "Sorry, this exchange used it up."

::rips hair out::

This actually happened. Just now. I wish I were kidding.

- Posted from my phone

Monday, March 21, 2011

I am achy

I am achy. I don't know how I could be happy and achy at the same time, but somehow that's what's happening.

I just got off the phone with family. "You sound great! Sooo much better than before." I must be getting good at muscling through shittiness.

The artist is patient and kind. I joke about the things that raise my hackles. We call them "flags." "You put up your flags, missy, but I don't think they're stop signs. They just help me understand you, that's all." 

I am grateful he wants to understand.

We spent Sunday reading craigslist stories and laughing until we cried. (Well, I cried, he farted. Romantic, huh.)

Also good: I started ballet class Saturday.

The achiness. Well, my ex posted photos of his new beau on his blog, for the first time since we broke up over a year ago.

I want him to be happy, and not in a sarcastic kind of way, but in a well, since I can't be that person I hope she can kinda way. But it still aches. It hurts to feel replaced, even though I logically know that's a ridiculous way of looking at things. No one has ever been "replaced" for me.

Also, I heard from aqua-eyed boy and assembled a care package for him because it makes me happy.

Happy and achy. I like ache. Muscles ache when they've been used. My heart has been used. But that's good, right? It's been filled and emptied and shaken and squeezed and though this means it's sometimes sore, it's there to be exercised.
Life is good even when it isn't always.

Also, bonus pic for the so inclined faithful readers who got all the way down to this point. Boobs! (Although I don't think any guys read this blog.)

I'm not really sure where this fits in, but it showed up under my "life is good" google image search. Too hilarious not to post even if in no way related!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Welcome to the old apartment.... this is where we used to live.

I am mining the world for info now.

Saturday I sat at the artist's parent's kitchen table and typed as he studied. His folks were anchoring a new tile backsplash to the wall and while writing, I noticed the way they interacted. Home remodeling is messy and inconvenient and stressful, yet they shared the work and joked with eachother.

While still writing, I quietly noted the artist struggling with his studies and how, despite his frustration, he still laughed and squeezed the dog.

This is a patient family. A giving and accepting family. I feel appreciated here. I still feel raw and scared but the artist has offered a healing cocoon of sorts. I still don't really know how he seems to balance offering support and granting space, but he seems to be able to read me.  It's uncanny, actually.

I spent a late lunch today moving a few last things from the place D and I lived together, readying it for sale. Hoo, that was tough. The house was cold and empty. No longer a home.

I drove away remembering how we wanted to fix up the front porch all cute. Noticed he finally took down the bush in the back. Wondered how we fit so many people into that tiny living room that one New Year's. This was the place I never fit into, though. There was never enough space for me. Which is a funny observation, maybe, because there wasn't enough room for me emotionally, either.

I am good at fitting into tiny places. But maybe this wasn't such a healthy skill.

The artist texted me:
him: I know you're strong but I'm here if you need me.

me: Thank you. I appreciate that more than you know.
Then I thought of the short road trip we'd taken -- the artist and I -- and how he powered through driving rain without any hint of stress. How he picked me up and grabbed my things like it was second nature. How he joked with the clerk of the tiny convenience store while motioning thoughtfully to me. I thought of these things and realized with surprise that he handles me with care, as if I am dear to him. And he includes me.

So now, I am just quietly paying attention. To this budding bond, yes, but most importantly, to myself.

I don't know where this goes from here. Movies have us craving insights that rightfully lead to "happily ever after," but real life is not like that.

This is what it means to be present. To take life one moment at a time.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The science of adult attachment

So, I'm reading this book on relationships that's been blowing my mind. It's called "Attached: the new science of adult attachment and how it can help you find -- and keep -- love."

Being a science geek who also loves love, I was drawn to the title. But also the reviews.

"...We allow some deeply ingrained misconceptions to influence our thinking. The first misconception is that everyone has the same capacity for intimacy. We've been raised to believe that every person can fall deeply in love (this part might well be true) and that when this happens, he or she will be transformed into a different person (this part is not!). Regardless of what they were like before, when people find "the one," they supposedly become adoring, faithful, supportive partners -- free of qualms about the relationship. It's tempting to forget that, in fact, people have very different capacities for intimacy. And when one person's need for closeness is met with another person's need for independence and distance, a lot of unhappiness ensues." ...
This book says it's important to be yourself. If you crave closeness, don't try to hide it. If your mate craves independence and distance and you aren't up front about needing to connect, you can end up in a relationship that isn't fulfilling your emotional needs:
"Your relationship needs are valid... and expressing them authentically is crucial to effective communication.... Our culture encourages you to believe that many of your needs are illegitimate... [but] they are essential for your happiness and that is what's important."