Everything else is just life.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Creature Feature

A guest post on life affected by love (all kinds) by Tim.


I am deaf. I am smiling. I am myself, for the first time in years.

We’re programmed to believe that this chance to be alive and breathing is meant to be something “larger” and “more important.” Bank accounts, mortgages, flat screens. I love possessions, but I am not possessed by them. I am possessed by the sound of a new song, the hair of a beautiful woman, the way her skin looks in the morning sun, the change in her breathing as she wakes up. The fact that some of them just simply feel like home.

I can pick an endless numbers of days this year that have changed me, but some are far more special than others. I’ve played music since I was three years old, and it has never been as vital as I feel it is right now. I’ve fallen in love many times, and that gorgeous, confusing dance is as vital as it has ever been. Music and the love of my family and friends are the only things I want to surround myself with until the day I die. I consider myself to be the luckiest man-boy on the planet.

I have played music, fallen in love, and shared laughter with some of the most beautiful creatures on this planet. Each one of them has made my heart as gracious as it is today. Days away I still feel every beat; every note makes my heart want to explode. Every memory of a kiss feels as it did when it was changing me the first time. I am alive. The wrinkles forming under my eyes are mostly there because of smiles, which makes me feel even more grateful.

Months ago I thought I was dead. My life came crashing down in front of me. A time consisting of layers of pain, exhaustion, and mind-bending agony that I will never be able to adequately quantify. (Can you ever?) Denial is a strong thing, and it ruined me for a long time. The music I made was good, but lacked passion. The love I try to show to everyone in my life felt unrequited with the one person who I thought was my world. She was. Always will be a part of me. However, I need more. I need someone to feel it. I want everyone around me to be their beautiful selves and let loose with whatever is in their soul. (That’s why she ended it. She is who she is and I want her to fly and be the amazing spirit that she is.)

When I look back on my life there are glimpses of special moments which capture all the pain and how it somehow coalesced into something life-altering. Sad to say, we are all damaged, but that’s the beauty of it all. We are all one, it just takes a second to realize that some folks get it and some don’t.

As for today I will play music with three of my best friends. I will think of the amazing women I have had the pleasure of knowing, and wish that all of them could hug me all at once. Inspiration comes from every corner of your being…just look harder.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

A Dream Within a Dream

There was a time, not long ago when I never thought I was going to wake up from my nightmare. I was lost, broken and alone. I spent the last half of a decade as a part of a lie, losing myself and my mind slowly. I saw a relationship die right before my eyes a long and painful death. It was time to take off the life support.

That was almost a year ago. I can't believe that it's been almost a year since I felt something so heart wrenching that I blamed myself for everything wrong in my life. He blamed me for everything and I accepted. Except I did something that he didn't expect...I changed.

I don't consider myself a psychic by any means, nor do I believe the impostors out there, I do have this sick intuition that shakes me from time to time and I find that I am drawn to others who share the same feelings. I also have vivid dreams, dreams that, if interpreted correctly, have substantial meanings and impeccable foreshadowing.

A few days ago, I had a dream that *Bob died. I found myself at his funeral looking over his casket. He looked older. I searched around for the family and friends that I had grown to be friendly with after over half a decade together and noticed that none of them were particularly sad. His sister was in a red dress (a la Scarlett in "How to Deal") and I couldn't locate his biological mother.

I knelt next to *Bob's casket. I was upset of course. Upset that I couldn't save anyone but myself. And I did. I took his hand and I swore that he moved a bit, and I thought to myself: "You f*cker."

The next thing I knew I was jarred awake from my alarm clock, bewildered as to what just took place in my subconscious. I wasn't sure how to feel, or if I should call him to see if he is indeed alive. I contemplated and replayed the dream in my head several times trying to figure out what I felt. Then I realized I felt nothing.

" To dream that you are at somebody else's funeral, signifies that you are burying an old relationship and closing the lid on the past. You may be letting go some of the feelings (resentment, anger, hostility toward someone) that you've been clinging onto."


My subconcious was telling me something that I wasn't aware of. I knew I was OK, and that I am sublimely happy in my current relationship, but I didn't think that I would actually bury *Bob, in a dream no less. I do know that I no longer have any urge to speak with him or see him ever again. Unless it's to give me my dog back, but that's a whole other blog.

The feeling I was searching for and have longed for was freedom. I finally feel free of his restraints, I feel free from guilt and I feel free from myself. I feel that anything is possible and the glass is finally half full. I feel that you can fall in love with your best friend and live happily ever after in a great partnership with the utmost respect and support. Relationships take work, and someone didn't want to put in his time.

I can't quite remember the ending of the dream, if there even was one, but there was a lesson and a hidden message I'm sure of it. What that truly is, is up for interpretation.

But it is nice to feel, finally free.

*name has been changed to protect the douche bag.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Me to a "T"

The Capricorn personality is very grounded in reality; it's the rock that everyone else loves to lean on. For the most part, Capricorns are quietly strong-willed and self-assured. They truly know who they are, so they are comfortable in any social situation they choose to participate in. Although Caps sometimes have a reputation as being a bit stodgy, they often astound their companions with their sharp and sudden wit.


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Way You Love Me

When I first heard this song by Faith Hill, I hated it. It was simple, and if I had a record company backing me then I could write something like this too etc...

When I started dating my boyfriend, I out of the blue, started humming this song and constantly singing it in my head. Almost kicking myself for liking it all of a sudden.

He took me to see Taylor Swift in concert in Nashville and it was one of the best nights I've had in a long time. She's an amazingly talented artist and is so real that you just want to be her best friend. OK, OK, I want to be her best friend. Anyway, there was a buzz going around that there would be a surprise guest appearance, I guessed it would be Tim McGraw who would help sing his namesake. It was actually, Faith Hill. She walked out and started singing "The Way You Love Me." Ironic? Totally. But also, awesome.

The fact that my boyfriend and I were there when she was singing that song, I feel was more than a coincidence.

So, please enjoy the video. It's a tad shaky but gets the point across.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Big Girls Don't Cry

Joey: Rach, you gotta find out if he's in the same place you are. Otherwise, it's just a moo point.
Rachel: A moo point?
Joey: Yeah. It's like a cow's opinion. It just doesn't matter. It's moo.
Rachel: Have I been living with him too long or did that all just make sense?

Honestly, it makes perfect sense. A few wise people have said to me, "you are right where you are supposed to be." And where I am supposed to be could be anywhere. Just as long and I'm smiling. Because I love smiling. Smiling means I'm happy.

I've been told that I wear my emotions on my face (as opposed to the proverbial sleeve). At any given time, you will see me smiling. A "hello" smile, an "I love you" smile, an "I've just blocked Michael's bedroom door with the shopvac" smile and the "my boyfriend is amazing" smile. Very rarely can someone rattle my cage, but it does happen on occasion. Those bastards. I am only human.

Normally, I am a very private person. I tell my deepest, darkest secrets to the people I love and trust the most. I have a very small group of friends that I tell everything to and few who I look to always for support and a shoulder to cry on. They love me for who I am, and shouldn't expect me to change with the seasons. I've been taking care of myself since I was 16 and I don't expect anyone to baby me (my Mom is an exception). Therefore, if there is something you have to say to me, tell me. I can handle it, I'm a big girl. I also will only rarely ask you for your opinion. I prefer to fight my own battles.

The only thing in life that I can't handle is motion sickness. Everything else, bring it on!

I've been questioning motives lately. Why do people do certain things that they do and say things that they say. No particular reason, I guess. But there is one thing that I always ask of people, and that's to be honest. I'm not a person who will tell you you're shoes are cute if I think they're ugly. I don't make passive-aggressive remarks to make you question what it is I'm really saying to you and I'm respectful. I shut my mouth so I don't insert my foot and I will be damned if someone calls me a hypocrite. No one should be faulted for being happy. No one.

When I was in the first grade, my teacher asked us all what we wanted to be when we grew up. The kids in class said the usual, Fireman, Doctor, Marine Biologist (yeah, really) and I said I wanted to be a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader. I was a ballerina then and I thought I was destined for the spotlight. I also had a boyfriend named Andrew. We were 6 years old and he was such a babe! We dated exclusively for about a week and then he moved on to my friend Vanessa. I don't remember crying or not liking Vanessa, maybe I didn't share my snack with her or something, but the scenario was anything but detrimental.

Things have changed, I no longer root for the Cowboys (GIANTS baby!), I'm no longer in the first grade and I no longer date Andrew. I have feelings, strong feelings and they tend to get hurt from time to time. I can't pinpoint when, but I started taking life a lot more seriously when I got older. And I also look at friendships differently than just sharing Dunk-a-roo's at snack time.

For the most part, I can make decisions on my own. I like to think of myself as a smart, independent woman. It was recently that I asked far too many people what they thought of my current situation, and I got nowhere. No one could tell me how I felt and no one could tell me how to react. I couldn't sort out my feelings because everyone else was telling me how to feel or what to do. Then I realized that I'm a quarter of a century old and I don't need anyone telling me how to feel or what to do. Simple, huh?

No comments from the peanut gallery, please.

I'll deal with whatever cards I'm dealt in the best way I see fit. I have no apologies for who I am, because no one should apologize for who they are. I like to surround myself with positive, eccentric individuals who give a damn about other people and march to the beat of their own drummer. No one to hold their hand when the going gets rough. We'll be fine. No tissues necessary.


Monday, October 12, 2009

Emotionally Spent

It's a known fact amongst us ladies that shopping cures the blues. Preferably, shoe shopping since we're always the same size (catch my drift?).

I find an excuse to shop for almost every occasion, for multiple people but mainly for myself. It rained today. Oh! I could use a new umbrella!

On the surface, there doesn't seem to be much of a thought process. In reality, the items purchased on said rainy day are making up for a lack of dealing with the rainy day issue. Sure buying the umbrella will keep me dry (and also stylish) but in essence, it's also shielding me from the issue: ie. the rain.

If I'm not making much sense here, its because its not meant to be justified. We shop when we're upset. End of story.

I was in Grand Central one Saturday morning, cranky because I hadn't eaten, so I bought myself a wheat bagel toasted with butter. Or so I thought. I finally found a seat on the bench when, to my chagrin, I opened the wax paper to find a plain bagel with cream cheese. No matter. I was starving. I took a bite of the bagel-I-didn't-order and then felt a tap on the shoulder. I was startled, I jumped and the bagel-I-didn't-order fell onto the gross NYC train station floor. Turns out it was an elderly woman looking for a seat, I politely made room for her and her friend and cleaned up my bagel. After throwing it in the trash I almost started to cry. For two reasons: for getting the wrong bagel and then not being able to eat it.

I took the shuttle to Times Square and walked to Macy's Herald Square. It was in a matter of 5 hours that I spent close to $1,000. All because I couldn't eat my bagel. Sure it would have been cheaper to buy another bagel, it was the principle of the matter. Could there have been an underlying reason as to why I spent so much money on clothes I didn't need that is more justifiable than me dropping my bagel in Grand Central? Sure, but do you really need one?

Emotional shopping aka Retail Therapy takes its toll on my credit cards and my bank account, but at the end of the day, I'm usually happy with my purchases (after I get yelled at by my boyfriend and my Mom). And in a situation that is less than stellar, its nice to know that there's something out there that will always cheer me up...just maybe not $1,000 worth.

Phoebe: Do you feel any better?

Rachel: Manhattan doesn't have enough stores.

My retail therapy? A pair of UGG Austrailia "Bailey" Button Sheepskin Boots for $150 at Lord & Taylor. A gift from my Mom so I will stop complaining to her to turn the heat on. A gift to myself for a not so stellar situation I'm currently in.

Hey, at least I didn't spend a grand.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Spinning My Wheels

My relationship with my gym is fickle. I enjoy the end results of working out, but rarely find the motivation to just get up and go. One of the things I love most is variety, especially taking the aerobic classes. My favorite is the Spin class. It's a great class for a cardio workout if you're like me and can't stand running on a treadmill. Spinning burns TONS of calories and by changing resistance, it's a great quad and butt work out too.

It had been awhile since I set foot in an aerobic class, let alone in the "Mom & Pop" gym in my lovely small town (where I actually worked during college). Many of the employees from my tenure are still working there, which is comforting to have some familiar faces, but also kind of damning to my ego since I'm still in said small town.

One Wednesday when I worked up the guts to try out the Spin class again, I rushed out of work at exactly 5pm to make it to the 5:15 class. I parked my car in my old "spot" and rushed in to change in the locker room. I saw a familiar face, Kira, whom I've known for a long time; we made small talk as we both made our way into the classroom.

"So what brings you back?" she asked.

"Oh, well, I moved away for a bit then came back home."

"Broke up with your boyfriend?" she asked a-matter-o-factly.

I laughed uneasily, "How'd you know?"

We both grabbed bikes and situated them next to each other. If I was going to endure pain and suffering whilst being drenched in sweat I wanted to do it next to someone I knew.

Lillian, the instructor, had her back turned to the classroom while she fussed with the sound system (which coincidentally still doesn't work from when I was employed 3 years ago). She turned towards us, our faces weary with the thought of what may be in store for our bodies.

"Oh, hey, Kira's here...OK, what's your name? Wait. Do I know you? You look so familiar," Lillian said.

"She used to work here!" Thanks, Kira.

"OH! OK." Lillian began the class, stopping every so often to try and place our lives coinciding.

When I worked at the gym, 3 years ago, I was still in college pursuing my Journalism degree with high hopes of becoming the next Meredith Vierra, Suchin Pak or Anne Curry. That dream hasn't necessarily subsided, it's just been morphed into becoming happy and successful at whatever I do. Currently, it's PR. I like PR. I like what I'm able to accomplish and I utilize my best assets.

Unfortunately, at my current position, I don't believe that I am. After being employed by my firm for four months, I've been itching for a better opportunity. I'm clouding my life with extracurricular's and not focusing on the big picture. The big picture that I had when I was in college.

After my ex and I broke up, I had three different people tell me I looked "stress free." And it was true. Recently, I had two different people say that I'm "spinning my wheels." I'm not where I see myself and I'm getting nowhere fast. It's beyond frustrating. The ambition in me is hammering at my ego for settling for a job that seemed promising at first but quickly turned into a "WTF am I doing here?"

It's been 2 months and I make it, every Wednesday, to Spin class. It's my release for the week. I take out my frustrations on the uphill battles and relish in my accomplishments during the sprints. I hope to, someday soon, find my "niche" and a place where I can plant my feet and stay for awhile, allowing me to utilize my best assets and be all I can be.

Lillian eventually remembered that I used to work at the front desk every Saturday morning.

"Journalism! You went to school for journalism!"

She remembered I would have a stack of newspapers and magazines behind the desk to keep me occupied when I wasn't greeting members.

"You left to be a reporter, I remember now, how did you do?"

I did, I became a reporter, than a Senior Editor, then I went over to the dark side and now I'm in PR. I laughed uneasily.

"That's good, you're going somewhere."

I sure hope so.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Fall? Well I'll be Damned.

Time fly's when you're having fun. Or at least when you're stressed out and don't have time for anything. I'm not sure when it was that I became so busy, or that I put so much on my plate but my calendar is full until mid-November.


Yes. And it's both a good and bad thing. A bad thing because I'm missing moments around me, but a good thing because I'm putting myself out there and relishing in the little moments I get with the ones I love.

For instance: When in the h-e-double hockey sticks did it become Fall? I understand Fall is official on September 21st or whatever, but the leaves are turning and falling and I have yet to enjoy it. I am constantly on the go and I am getting sick of it. I have a backlog on my DVR that annoys me to no end. I'm wound really tight and in the words of my sister, "You're going to give yourself a stroke."

It is my fault that I joined a Women's soccer league that only plays on weekends and it's also my fault that I continue to work part time on top of my full time job. Basically I'm trying to do it all and hoping I don't drop any balls in the mean time.

I've neglected my friends. Not on purpose, it has just happened. It also doesn't help that they live a few hours away. And I can't help but feel horrible when it feels like I'm "scheduling" them in. I joke about it, but in the end it sucks.

I need to become better at time management. I do a pretty good job of it now, my problem is trying to do everything all at once.

I truly can't believe it's Fall already. I'll be damned.