Tuesday, December 30, 2014


Me: How did you sleep, honey?

Him: Like a man who has discovered the woman of his dreams.

It just keeps getting better and better. My god.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Love songs

"I woke up this morning with this song in my head." ~Amazing Boyfriend

I'm going to add more songs here (to compile a list) after this post isn't so prominent because I want to remember this high-as-a-kite feeling where every song speaks to us. <3

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

What about the future of this blog?

I seem to be switching from writing adoring posts about Amazing Boyfriend to writing them directly to him and I don't know what that will mean for the future of this blog. There will always be things to write about that I don't want my name attached to so I like that there's this anonymous outlet but I don't know that I will have the same needs that I did when I started this blog, fumbling my way through life with a raw and bleeding heart.

I do, however, have a bit of advice. If you happen to get a terrible cold while on vacation, ain't nothing better for the body then a good ol' dose of endorphins. Better than cold medicine: love letters, bitches!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Why blog?

Why blog? I originally started to practice both writing and opening up (and it just so turns out that I enjoy writing as an alternative to thinking out loud, so lots of processing happens here too).

Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert, explains it well.
When I first started blogging, my future wife often asked about what my goal was. The blogging seemed to double my workload while promising a 5% higher income that didn't make any real difference in my life. It seemed a silly use of time. I tried explaining that blogging was a system, not a goal. But I never did a good job of it. I'll try again here.

Writing is a skill that requires practice. So the first part of my system involves practicing on a regular basis. I didn't know what I was practicing for, exactly, and that's what makes it a system and not a goal. I was moving from a place with low odds (being an out-of-practice writer) to a place of good odds (a well-practiced writer with higher visibility).

The second part of my blogging system is a sort of R&D for writing. I write on a variety of topics and see which ones get the best response. I also write in different "voices". I have my humorously self-deprecating voice, my angry voice, my thoughtful voice, my analytical voice, my half-crazy voice, my offensive voice, and so on. You readers do a good job of telling me what works and what doesn't.

When the Wall Street Journal took notice of my blog posts, they asked me to write some guest features. Thanks to all of my writing practice here, and my knowledge of which topics got the best response, the guest articles were highly popular. Those articles weren't big money-makers either, but it all fit within my system of public practice.

My writing for the Wall Street Journal, along with my public practice on this blog, attracted the attention of book publishers, and that attention turned into a book deal. And the book deal generated speaking requests that are embarrassingly lucrative. So the payday for blogging eventually arrived, but I didn't know in advance what path it would take. My blogging has kicked up dozens of business opportunities over the past years, so it could have taken any direction.


Sunday, December 21, 2014

The weeks have finally turned into months

I had been counting the weeks because I couldn't yet count the months. But now it's 2 months (only 2 months!) and we are wholly, irreversibly, madly, amazingly, indescribably in love.

While on a trip apart pining away for each other, we recounted how we had only spent 2 whole weekends together. No wonder we're craving more time. Long swaths of time where we can tangle and gaze and do all the things that lovers do (that the Eurythmics crooned about) (sorry, terrible pun only relevant to 80s MTV fans!). (Puke? Or dance? YMMV.)

Every day seems to bring with it a new level of connection or a heightened bond about this thing we stumbled into without even looking or trying, and it's growing even deeper and more beautiful than I could possibly have imagined.

Here's the thing about being in love: it doesn't erase past loves. It does, however, remove their power. I have this overarching sense of peace now, about everything. Even the things that once smarted. Gone is any longing or wistfulness and I really just feel genuinely happy and content. (Like, all the time!) I don't know how long the honeymoon period lasts, but BRING IT, girlfriend, because this is fucking awesome.

So. In. Love.

(Sent from my phone)

Wednesday, December 10, 2014


"I don't understand how another man could let you go," he said, kissing me softly between my eyebrows. "I won't."

I hadn't brought up much detail about various aches from the past: leaving relationships, feeling unreceptive to love, or being the recipient of unreturned feelings -- you get exposed to the gamut of heartache if you're out there -- but somehow he got it. I mean, I was honest even if not long-winded. I guess you can read between the lines when the reply to "why did your last relationship end" was "he didn't have the same feelings about me that I had for him." But it's okay. The closest thing I may ever get to a Happily Ever After is feeling lucky to have loved.

And to try again.

Friday, December 5, 2014

This just happened

Friend: Hey, here's a link to build your own TV antennae! All you need is 4 metal coat hangers, 10 wood screws, 10 washers, a Balun UHF/VHF Matching transformer, 2 - 22inch strips of 18 gauge wire, drill, cutter, and basic mechanical aptitude.

Me: Thanks. Too bad I don't have any of those things!

Thursday, December 4, 2014


"What's different about this guy?" asked my friend. "If you had to pick one word, what would it be?"
I thought for a minute. How to describe this? In one word, yet?

"Connection," I said.

I couldn't resist adding more. "It's like we're very in tune with each other."
I paused, listening to myself. How lame that must sound. 
"I don't know how to describe it," I trailed off.
My friend knows me and is very supportive anyway. He knows this is unusual for me. "Yay, that's awesome!"
"Well it's still in the early stages," I said, suddenly protective about admitting my feelings.

How do you express that feeling when it just clicks? I think it's that we both "turn towards" each other similarly.
"People who turned toward their partners in the study responded by engaging the bidder, showing interest and support in the bid. Those who didn’t — those who turned away — would not respond or respond minimally and continue doing whatever they were doing, like watching TV or reading the paper. Sometimes they would respond with overt hostility, saying something like, “Stop interrupting me, I’m reading.” 
"These bidding interactions had profound effects on marital well-being. Couples who had divorced after a six-year follow up had “turn-toward bids” 33 percent of the time. Only three in ten of their bids for emotional connection were met with intimacy. The couples who were still together after six years had “turn-toward bids” 87 percent of the time. Nine times out of ten, they were meeting their partner’s emotional needs. http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2014/06/happily-ever-after/372573/
What makes relationships work beautifully is both wanting the same thing. But that applies not just to similar interests and lifestyle but also to a similar amount of connection.
And this just feels so connected.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014


He sent me this today. That he *made*, because "I didn't see anything that said what I wanted."


Saturday, November 29, 2014

Wherever you go, there you are

So things have been humming along beautifully in this new wonderful relationship, now just 5 weeks but feeling very... different... than usual. So crazy about this guy, and no triggers, it's nuts. I've stopped trying to understand it and have just been basking in the light of his attention.

And then my phone died and suddenly everything was silent when I rebooted. No texts, no replies, nothing.

I was cool at first. "Oh maybe he fell asleep mid-convo. I should get some sleep too." I drifted into a sound, peaceful sleep of oblivion for the next 8 hours. When I woke, I still felt that sense of peace that comes from being in love.

"GM sweetie," I texted.


Well, maybe my cell company decided my unlimited plan should have a limit after all and it broke. I called and reached his voicemail, smiling when I left a message. He has the most amazing voice.

Still, crickets. Now I was starting to get worried. Was he in the hospital? Was there an emergency? Ohmygod I know. He doesn't love me anymore! That must be it.

A half hour later I'm sniffling into a box of tissues emergency-texting Relationship Crisis Friend (everyone has one), because the obvious conclusion is that something terrible is going on, of course. Rational brain is (not) rational!

Me: I'm having a moment.

RCF: What's going on?

Me <honking loudly>: I haven't heard from him since my phone died last night, this is so unlike him. What if there's been some kind of emergency? What if he's not okay?? Or maybe he's rethinking us. <SNIFF!>

RCF: Why would you think that?

Me: I dunno, just triggered I guess. About this time last year I dated someone for about 6 weeks and they seemed really into me until that switched off overnight. Although that situation wasn't like this. We hadn't gotten close.

RCF: He's not last year guy. Don't worry, I'm sure he'll be in touch.

Suddenly BF reaches out. Interrupts my crisis session. And it's fine, everything is fine, he's still the same amazing guy who seems to think this thing we're growing is the most amazing thing ever and I find myself relieved and sheepish. Wherever you go, there you are. I'm so much better, but I'll never toughen those sensitive innards.

I decided to confide that I'd been feeling vulnerable, but maybe only the tiniest bit so as not to scare him away. Like, leave out the part about the tissues. Maybe sound cavalier. "Yeah, I thought maybe you were in the hospital, or marrying someone else or something." Yeah. No big deal, right?

But he got it, all of it, even what I didn't say, and even when he couldn't even see me. He wrapped words around my heart tenderly like gauze bandages and a hug, and for a moment, the world melted away. <3

(Sent from my phone)

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

You mean scowling isn't sexy?

Not embarrassing at all when your new boyfriend discovers this while helping you pack.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

It's the little things that say so much

Me (incredulous): Why do you have a picture from Beetle Juice on your phone?

Him: Um...

Me (clarifying): I mean, I noticed it because I had it on MY phone just last week. It's kindof an obscure thing you don't see.

Him: Well...

Me: The only reason *I* had it on my phone is because I just happen to know someone who looks like that.

Him (falling on the ground laughing): Ohmygod that's why! That just sealed it. We're soul mates.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

CG --> BF

It's a month, now, of seeing Conference Guy. I'm going to stop calling him CG and start calling him BF because whatever this is that is happening between us is amazing and it's not casual. It doesn't make sense but we've stopped trying to understand.

"I can't wait to wake up next to you in the middle of the night for the first time and suddenly realize you're there. It would be like falling in love all over again."

"Sounds like paradise."

(Sent from my phone)

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Warning labels

"I have a terrible sense of direction!!"
"Don't worry, we'll get lost together."

"I have 'back.'"
"You're perfect."

"I'm very sensitive."
"Me too."

"I take a long time getting ready."
"However long you want, love."

"I need to eat every 3 hours."
"I'll pack snacks for us."

"Family get togethers might not always be enjoyable."
"I'll roll with it."

I can't throw anything at this guy that scares him. It's amazing. HE is amazing. <3

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Some thoughts from today

-- It's still not easy to hear about the girl the Cyclist is dating, and I don't love this. It means I'm not completely past it yet. However, I *am* finally at the point where I want to offer more "friendship value" by being able to hear what he's up to rather than shutting it down selfishly which was kindof a shitty friend thing, so at least I'm moving past that.

-- I hoped being totally into Conference Guy would erase previous feelings but it hasn't, at least not yet. But that's probably part of being human and all of this is pretty recent. But I appreciate that he and I can even *talk* about this, and all kinds of things actually. The kind of emotional bond we are growing is pretty amazing.<3

-- I checked my teeth on the shuttle to make sure I hadn't been yakking away at lunch with spinach lodged in my teeth and noticed, of course, my fucking hair. Can't it look nice just ONCE??
-- Whatever!

-- I'm so entirely exciting about moving next week, if all goes as planned (and it may not, so we'll see, there might be delays).

-- I'm thrilled at the idea of no longer playing trash jenga. No more roommates!!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Exuding insufferable joy

Maybe it's good that I'm trying not to write so much this month because all it would be is disgustingly gushy and romantic.

Conference guy is amazing. He gets more so by the hour. If I had put together the perfect list and custom-ordered a man, I could not possibly have gotten a better guy.
Perfect for me. <3
Just kidding, the secret formula is really this:

Anyway, while this blog is somewhat of a diary (I have other, more useful things elsewhere online), I still do not want to be responsible for inducing vomiting, so it's quite fortunate that the timing is such that November was going to be my "off" month.

So, I'm visiting my BFF now 3,000 miles from home and she's been making fun of me all week. "Asplenia's in loooove," she sang. I didn't notice because I was texting hearts to my new beau, so she sailed past, announcing his name to no one in particular. I snapped to attention.
"Bahahahaa!!!" She howled. "Look at your face! Even the sound of his name makes you happy. I don't think I've ever SEEN you like this!"

So, yeah. Life is good.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

learning to love again (cartoon)

I woke up to this, from Conference Guy, who is showing me how to believe in love again:
Copyright Gavin Aung Than, Zenpencils.com
(Quote from C.S. Lewis: "To love at all is to be vulnerable.")

Monday, November 10, 2014

diving deeper

I wasn't going to write, you guys, but this... this thing that is growing between me and Conference Guy is off the charts. Maybe there is such a thing as early love, I never really believed in it before for myself although I've heard of it for others... but when it clicks, it fucking clicks, son. I can't get enough of him. We're now 3,000 miles apart and texting each other love songs and if it's even possible to fall even harder for someone you're still getting to know and haven't even, well, officially culminated the relationship with, it's happening. It's a fucking incredible, amazing ride.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Swooning over love songs lately

I wasn't going to write this month because of other writing projects taking priority but I can't help myself. I have to throw a snippet out here.

The most amazing thing is happening  and I don't know what to make of it. I'm falling in love. I've long since kicked my logical brain out the door, none of this makes sense. I'm not even going to spell out the ridiculousness, that's how crazy it is. But it's a fucking incredible ride. It's like a train that barreled into my life and I'm just hanging on. I don't know where it's going and I don't care. It's the sweetest sensation. 

I've been on a high over this guy for two weeks and it feels like the best thing in the world. Dear reader, your loveless blogger has it bad. And it's oh, so good.

"And think not you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course."  Khalil Gibran

(Sent from my phone)

Friday, October 31, 2014

You Say “Flawed”, He Says “Sexy”: What Men Really Think About Your Body | MyTinySecrets

Powerful concept for the self-critical. My sweetie sent me this after a wonderful talk we had last night:


I'm going to take a bit of a break from my blog for the month of November to participate in NaNoWriMo -- not working on a novel but will surf off the energy of mass writing projects to do my own. Stay tuned!

One final thought for now: all those flaws & frailties I'm so hard on myself for, well, it really is true that there's someone out there for everyone. If traits about oneself don't work for a particular match, it doesn't mean it won't for all matches, it just means that's not quite the right fit.

I love how I feel so appreciated by this guy, even the things I feel most vulnerable about, he embraces. I think that's the biggest gift you can give someone in a relationship: the gift of acceptance and reverence.

Peace out! <3

(Sent from my phone)

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Special delivery

When the mailroom at work contacted me about a package, I blew it off. I've been slammed the past few days and thought "know what, I'll just get it tomorrow." Come back from lunch break to this on my desk... from Conference Guy. [MELT]

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

3rd date (and no, not THAT kind)

I'm trying to decide between writing and sleeping. I really need to do both.

Third date with the incredible Conference Guy. He gets more and more fantastic by the second. I don't even know how to describe my feelings. They're complicated -- I'm terrified and happy all at once. He acts like I'm the most amazing girl in the universe! This simultaneously makes me melt and wonder if I'm slightly autistic. I mean, I can barely stand feeling this vulnerable.

Is this what happens if you're single too long? You forget how to let other people into your space, like *really* into it? We're taking it slow, but this whole thing is unfolding like scenes from a romantic movie. It's intoxicating.

I could be crazy about this guy.

I already am.

Saturday, October 25, 2014


It's official. I'm totally falling for this guy.

YOU GUYS, he's amazing. The awkward hump of unworthiness I clumsily stumbled over a few days ago? Something I'll likely always contend with, but at least not in the way today. (I'm sure it'll be back on the menu tomorrow; do not fear, dear reader.)

We spent the day picnicking in a park overlooking the water. I wasn't sure how I'd feel when he picked me up but after hauling the motherload of food/drink and one musical instrument 2 miles to a suitable gazebo (read: one not occupied by anyone having sex), we were laughing and talking so much that I forgot all about being scared. Our connection is really fucking incredible.

For the record, I'm totally not overthinking or telling anyone right now. One day at a time!

Not happening, for once!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Can you decide not to be as horrible as usual and actually have that happen? Or does that just exude forth, uncontained??

I sat next to Conference Guy and checked in with myself. This was our first "official" date after turning a budding friendship into a romance via text. He has this calm, nice way about him and I found myself feeling easy and relaxed the whole date. I was almost normal! (I can be weirdly skittish sometimes when fleshing things out so, like a lunatic, I have to keep checking in. Do I want to be here? How do I feel?)

We had a wonderful dinner, he even brought me flowers (FUCK I left them in the car, goddammit, they may as well be half a mile away) and at some point he even came to sit next to me so we could be closer to each other rather than all the way across the table, and I was so happy.
Everything was great until we went outside and stood by my car and got quiet, testing out what it felt like to be in each other's presence. I felt like I was in high school again. Suddenly shy.
Him: This is like a dream!

Me (giggling): Like freefalling. I found this animation of Homer Simpson falling down a neverending flight of stairs.

Him: Um, do I remind you of Homer Simpson?
We laughed and then got quiet again and he began smoothing my hair with the utmost tenderness, as if he were handling a rare, precious butterfly -- my hideous hair! -- and his eyes were beaming with unreserved adoration and affection, and I suddenly got self-conscious: how could he possibly look at me like that and enjoy what he saw? Didn't he see the lines in my face? That my smile is crooked? My awkward stance?

And that's when I realized, that's it. That's what's fucking going on, that's my problem.

I don't honestly believe I'm pretty or special or worthy.

I don't know how to be cherished.

I don't know how to receive, I only know how to give.

Dammit and now I CAN'T fucking go out to the car and get the goddamn flowers because I'm sitting here crying, realizing this, and I don't want to face my roommies who are now piled up in front of the tv studying and watching the latest ebola news. "Just chillin'" I'll say, zipping out the front door, but all the lights are on and they'll see. Suuure, you are, they'll think.

Isn't it just so much better if I shut this budding thing down? If I never have to worry about opening up or sharing my insecurities or ugly-crying in front of him, isn't it just better if I shut it all down?

But I'm not going to. I'm going to give this a chance, as terrified as I am.

I won't tell him I'm scared. I won't reveal that the confident-seeming fun girl he "fell" for at the conference is really a bag of insecurities, and I will try not to cackle my unsexiest laugh to ruin the mood while flinging his compliments away with clever retorts about my hideousness. I will try not to do any of these things.

I will try.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Connecting with the inner compass

This is my last night of living in my head and it's been so nice savoring the past few days. Tomorrow I have a date to see ~him~ and will see if there's *really* something there, like we think. (Not that we're going to slip on a banana peel and have sex -- my frigid ass still waits for that --but we haven't even *kissed*, so, yeah.)

The past couple of years, my heart has remained an inpenetrable black coal inside my chest for anyone other than the Cyclist, despite trying (and before that I don't even want to talk about it). 
So this seems to be an experiment in freefalling.

It isn't pretty.
I don't really seem to have control over the when/why part -- lawd knows I've dissected other possibilities in my head and thought they'd be fantastic matches... if only I could make myself feel.

Not happening.
I used a recent meditation tool to evaluate the current lineup (when there was one). The exercise is to ask yourself the following 4 questions before making a big decision, if you're unsure. (This works for anything, not just love -- it's just a way to connect with your inner compass.)

(Or you could just ask your mom.)
Questions to ask before making a decision:
1. Does it feel like freedom or entrapment?

2. Does it feel easy or forced?

3. Does it feel very fun, compelling or stimulating?

4. Does it feel like peace or mania? (Is there an inner stillness?)
A truly healthy decision passes all four with flying colors.

This is how I was so easily able to narrow down the recent possibilities. I went out with Last Year Guy and while sitting next to him at the salad place, I imagined sitting next to him at the salad place a year from now, and something in me suddenly felt trapped. And the idea of getting together again felt forced. It did feel peaceful, however, and usually even felt fun, but for whatever reason, it only passed 2 of those 4 questions. Who knows why it wasn't resonating? Maybe someday it will -- he's such a great guy, I wish it could have worked.

Anyway, so we'll see. Tonight is the last night to pretend I'm ready for love... tomorrow is the test!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

hearts everywhere

We haven't even kissed yet and we're kindof falling in love. Here's what's unexpected: I don't care. I don't care if it lasts a week, a month or never even gets out of the starting gate. I'm loving every second of the blissful connection with Conference Guy and we're talking about anything and everything and I'm not feeling shut down, like usual, at least not yet. Fucking awesome. The emotional connection is so easy! <3 <3 <3

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Monday, October 13, 2014

Forecast unpredictable

I am on the verge of having a torrid love affair with 1 of 3 men (should I even call the 4th that I haven't yet met that a friend recommended, in this state? oy). My heart has softened just enough and I am feeling just reckless enough. It's a powerful mix. Each of these guys has something special that stands out.
Conference guy: green eyes and a pretty incredible emotional connection. Met him at a work conference a few weeks ago and we bonded over the world's most boring speaker.

Last year guy: met him when the Cyclist and I were stalled. On the second date, when he told me he liked me, I burst into tears (this makes guys feel awesome, by the way) because I wasn't over the Cyclist, so this got friendzoned before it even got OUT of the friendzone. But he gave me space and sometimes mailed me chocolate and  now I suddenly find myself thinking of him.

High school guy: honestly I barely remembered this dude when he friended me on FB a while back. Well, I posted something about being in my hometown recently at the hospital and he was all "oh hey, I see you're in the neighborhood! I'm 3 blocks away at a pub now, wanna stop by when you leave?" I only saw him for like, 20 minutes but hmm.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

What relaxing weekend?

This has been an especially trying coupla weeks.

I've been juggling it all like a motherfucker: medical crises, existential crises, physical limits pushed yet working like a machine, boss as fuck, getting everything done even when up at 3am texting my mom in the hospital and looking for houses and working on book idea and getting oil changes and attending workshops. It was a lot but I was HANDLING it.

Even when I found out my ex is having a baby and I cried and stalked the mother of his kid online (she's adorable, and Facebook, I both love and hate you) and poured my guts out into my diary, even that sucked but after I got it all out I was chill.
I was good, or at least not incapacitated, until the "conversation."

Mom: Hey, here's all the stuff that's wrong with you.

Me: Cool, hey, can we talk about something else?

Mom: Not really.

Me: How about we talk about what's NOT wrong with me?

Mom: Naw, that's not really how I roll.

[Talking happens, venus orbits the sun...]

Mom: So? This was good.

Me [rising from pit of despair]: Are we done?

Mom: One more thing. How would you like to have a family intervention? I'll call your sister and cousin and we can go over this again.

Me: Um, no thanks, I'm good.

Mom: Wait, why do you have low self-esteem? Go cheer yourself up! You don't watch enough TV.
So that happened.

Me to friend: She thinks everything I do is wrong. My job is wrong, my house is wrong, I'm not married yet, I don't have kids, etc.

Friend: Wait, what's wrong with your job?

Me: It's not down the street from her house.
If you've ever had a conversation with someone in an irrational state, there's one of two things you can do: try to make sense, or accept that no sense is ever going to happen.

Stress follows the first law of thermodynamics. The law of conservation of energy states that energy can neither be created nor destroyed, it merely transfers. Stress follows this law. If I did not take the ball of outstretched tension held out to me, it would stay inside causing the holder distress (on an already distressed system). Because she's going through a medical crisis and I'm not, I took the ball but hot damn!