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Is this cheating or just a harmless trip down memory lane?

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My soul is a hidden orchestra; I know not what instruments, what fiddlestrings and harps, drums and tamboura I sound and clash inside myself. All I hear is the symphony.” – Fernando Pessoa

On May 1st, while at the casino with my mom I got a text from a ghost from the past.  This one: https://blessedwithastarontheforehead.com/2017/10/20/determined-and-no-longer-feeling-lost/

We hadn’t spoken in over a year.  Back then, as that post described, I felt it was not smart to continue exchanging messages with him.  Our texting, or should I call it sexting since most of what we talked about would make most people blush, no longer seemed appropriate.

I always enjoyed the texting as it was laced with the possibility of all happening again, but then he was an engaged man.  I could not longer deny that he was an unavailable man.  Reliving the past was no longer a possibility.  I thought we could just text as friends but, when, without missing a beat, he made a sexually flirty comment I asked for a break. I felt offended, used and possibly a little hurt that he had chosen to marry someone else (if I am to be completely transparent).

He obliged and never reached out until now.  For some reason I knew we would speak again and I was actually surprised it took him this long to text.  I was also firm on my resolve to ignore him if he ever reached out again.

That resolve completely disappeared the moment he reached out with the excuse that he thought he had seen me walking down 34th street as he was going by in a cab. I hesitated for half a second, then replied.  Seeing his name on my phone made me happy.  Enough time had gone by that I was no longer hurt.

“I have found both freedom and safety in my madness; the freedom of loneliness and the safety from being understood, for those who understand us enslave something in us.” – Kahlil Gibran

I miss him.  We were friends for a long time.  The dating/sex stuff was part of it, but I like to believe that we had a strong connection even outside of that.  We have a history and good memories that we are both fond of.  I don’t think he lied to me.  I think he didn’t volunteer a lot and, honestly, I probably didn’t want to know.   I was telling myself that the girlfriend was not serious.  Sometimes ignorance is bliss.  Until it bites us on the face. Face bites are painful and hard to ignore!

We now have been texting every now and then, and getting very near to the conversations of the past.  I know what he is after.  It is the same thing that attracts me to him.  No, it is not sex.  It is the idea of sex.  It is the excitement and possibilities of sex.  It is the memories of the sex we had before.  He, I am sure, doesn’t want to risk his marriage.  Me, I am sure, I don’t want to carry the karma of messing up a marriage.

He knows exactly how to make me weak in the knees.  Just the idea of him still does it for me.  I know exactly how to push his buttons and make him forget his name and his way home.  He is probably already bored in his marriage and I miss that incredible chemistry we had.  I miss the idea of him.  I miss being intimate with someone, even if it is just in memories.

Then I look in the mirror and staring back at me is fraud, is phony, is hypocrisy.  This is a slippery road.  I am flirting with disaster.  I have been cheated on before.  I know the pain.  I don’t want to cause it on anyone for any reason.  I know we will not be physical with each other but talking about it seems harmful enough, or is it harmless?  When is cheating really cheating? What counts as cheating?

what we could be
if we stopped
carrying the remains
of who we were.” – Tyler Knott Gregson

And here I am writing this in the hopes that you will absolve me and give me permission to make trips down memory lane with this one person.  I want you to tell me that it is okay if sometimes the conversation veer into the past, and into x-rated territory.

I sit here, shameful and blameless, absolving myself and assuming full blame.  It is not easy to ignore his texts.  I don’t want to ignore his texts.  But do I have to?  Why can I explore a playful side without any consequences?

Who am I kidding?  There is a consequence to every action. Even if I want to look the other way.

Here I am again confusing drama with excitement and trying to blur the lines.  If I am intent on making a mistake, shouldn’t I go out and make new ones, and therefore learn new lessons?

I know the answer to all the questions swirling around in my mind.  I have a moral compass that sometimes I wish would just take a day off.

It is just that sometimes getting burn seems like a much better proposition than the mundane nothingness of everyday.

“Oh Sometimes I want a quiet life, other times I want to go a little bit fucking Gatsby.” Atticus

 

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Am I getting a friend with benefit? Have I become that person?

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“You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment. Fools stand on their island of opportunities and look toward another land. There is no other land; there is no other life but this.” – Henry David Thoreau

Am I getting a friend with benefit? Have I become that person?  .. Well not quite, but inching closer.

I broke a record last night. I had 4 drinks. I had 3 passion fruit mojitos and 1 frozen cosmopolitan. I don’t think I ever had that many drinks in one single evening before but in my defense we started at 5 pm, so it was in the course of a long night. I have never gotten drunk in my life, and yesterday was no exception. I didn’t even feel tipsy.

Getting up at 5:45am this morning after going to bed after midnight was no fun. However I am so completely happy. I needed that night out. I needed to let my hair down. I needed to get caught in the rain. I needed to feel alive.

Last night I met my doctor friend at the Pampano Restaurant in NYC. This is where we went last time we got together. That last time was an impromptu dinner date. I had been to his office and he had asked me if I wanted to grab dinner. We walked around NYC until we stumbled into Pampano. We were happy we did. So when he asked me if I wanted to return there I happily said yes. I had been dreaming about their passion fruit mojitos.

We had been talking about getting together since that last time. He seemed eager to see me. All of a sudden his texting seemed to have more kissing icons and then there was his calling me love and sweetie. Was he always like that and I just only now noticed? At any rate I just joined in, welcoming the attention.

We met at 5pm and sat at the bar for about 1 hour then we moved upstairs to have dinner. We love everything about that place. The food, the service, everything was impeccable. We had fish for every course, halibut, tuna and groper. We enjoyed them all. For dessert we had the Mexican chocolate cake and it was so yummy.  He also had Mexican coffee and I had a couple of sips of that.  I had never tried it before and it was surprisingly good and stronger than all of the other drinks.

Besides a quick 5 minutes on how I am doing with my gluten free diet (poorly) and taking my vitamins (better), we mostly talked about life and being in the moment.  Contrary to the last time we were there, this time included a lot of flirting. I knew and he knew that kissing was a just a matter of time. It happened right before the dessert. I got up to go to the ladies room and he pulled me to him and kissed me. I kissed him again upon returning to the table.

When we left the restaurant we decided to walk around the area and find a cute bar to go into. It started to drizzle and we just walked in the rain holding hands and stopping to kiss at times.

“Happiness, not in another place but this place…not for another hour, but this hour.” – Walt Whitman

I was in the moment, truly enjoying every second of it. The attention, the alcohol, the kissing, the rain, everything contributed to make it all perfect.

I know we are not a couple and I know we will not be a couple. Nothing has changed, and I am okay with that. In fact, I want that. I don’t want things to change. I want to remain friends.

It is hard to explain. I like him. He likes me. We have deep, amazing conversations. He challenges me and I challenge him. He lets me know when I am not being in the moment or when I let my ego get in the way of things. I point out when he is not behaving as he preaches. We have similar ideas about life and what we want to do now and upon retirement. We are both so grateful and incredibly aware of the blessings we have been given.  Somehow all of that doesn’t seem enough to make a romantic relationship work. Actually, not even that. All that is not enough for him to want a relationship with me.

In the past I questioned that.  I didn’t ask him.  I spend time trying to figure that out.  As I mentioned before, we attempted dating in the past, around 3 years ago. I was more into him than he was into me, or perhaps into being in a relationship. When he disappeared I understood that he didn’t want anything serious. I was upset for a little bit but decided to get over it. When he came back, I welcomed him back as a friend. We didn’t talk about his disappearance, we also didn’t resume the romance part of it. It was strictly friends. Until last night.

I see now that in the past I took things personally, trying to find a fault, a reason why he didn’t want to continue dating. I am no longer even curious about that. I realize things are just as they should be. Even though on paper and on a date here and there we may look perfect together I think that we could never make it far as a couple.

Last night we added kissing to our friendship. I know that it may blur the lines or make things messy but I think I can handle it. Somehow, and perhaps foolishly, I believe we both can just have this kissing every now and then not affect or change anything. Of course everything remains to be seen.

“I want to stand as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all kinds of things you can’t see from the center.” – Kurt Vonnegut

I just need to make sure that kissing is all that there will ever be. Sex creates drama and casual sex is not for me. I know myself and know I would get emotionally attached.  I would have expectations.

To finish the evening we walked into a place called Lips. It turned out to be a Drag Queen show place. It was towards the end of the show but we still got to see the host telling some jokes, and then Mary J. Blige and Lady Gaga. It was so much fun. The place was very welcoming the moment we walked in. I would definitely return.

After that we took an Uber to where he had parked his car and he drove me home.

I love that I have no expectations and that I am perfectly fine with things the way they are. I will definitely see him again, perhaps for dinner or brunch, perhaps with kissing or without it. Maybe next week, or in a few months.  And it will be fine and enjoyable.

It is wonderful to discover that I can change.  That I can be accepting. That I can be okay with living on surprises and having no expectations. I feel stronger emotionally.  Things can be more than black and white. The present moment can actually be better than the expectations I have for the future.

Here is to blurring lines and being okay with it!

“Don’t live the same day over and over again and call that a life. Life is about evolving mentally, spiritually, and emotionally.” – Germany Kent

Not losing is winning, or so I tell myself! :-)

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All continues to be crazy busy for me between work and having my mom and my brother’s girlfriend in town.

Mom turned 83 on May 1st.  To celebrate it we went to Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun casinos.  We didn’t win any money but didn’t lose much either.  We had a lot laughs and great meals.  All in all I will call it a winning 3 days.

As far as dating,  things have been very quiet.  With my mom here I prefer to dedicate my free time to her.  I am so incredibly blessed to still have her around and since I only see her twice a year I want to make sure I am not wasting that time.  She is leaving tonight so now I will find the time to meet a couple of guys waiting in the wings.  I give them a lot credit for waiting around for this long.  They will be rewarded with taking me to dinner 🙂 just kidding.

There is also the data architect from a previous post.  He is so sweet keeping in touch and sending me pictures of mosaics as he encounters them in his daily travels.  I am not sure there are any romance vibes but I think its thoughtfulness is worth a second date.

“We’re all islands shouting lies to each other across seas of misunderstanding.” – Rudyard Kipling

Then there was the widower that was so interested in me and begging me to give him a second chance after that faux pas of telling me he thought he spent too much on the first and second dates.  He had been writing daily then all of a sudden went silent.  I attributed that to the the fickle way some people are.  I don’t want to say that is solely an internet dating issue but it seems to be easier for people to just disappear after meeting online.

Nothing surprises me anymore.  That is the reason I am more guarded then ever when it comes to jumping into relationships.  People are fickle. One day they love you, the other they found someone else.   I don’t think he and I would have had a future, it is just disappointing when people just disappear with no explanation.

Then on April 29 I get a text from him:

I didn’t reply to that.  I actually didn’t know what to say.  At first I was annoyed that he chose to disappear and then all of a sudden come back with that. If you disappear, just stay away, don’t come back after 2 weeks to say good bye. Then I didn’t like that his text made it seem that I was the one more interested in him and he was breaking up with me. As far as I knew he was still trying to get a 3rd date.

I guess I could have said ” Best wishes”, but I didn’t.  Now time has passed and I am indifferent about it, only mentioning it to keep you guys informed, in case anyone is keeping track of my boring dating life.

“Between what is said and not meant, and what is meant and not said, most of love is lost.” – Kahlil Gibran

Then there is my doctor friend that lately is being really friendly and wanting to hang out.  He has started addressing me as love and sweetie and seems eager than usual to see me.  I am going along with the terms of endearment.  I enjoy the attention and love spending time with him but I wonder if there is more interest than just friendship.

We dated for a few months years ago.  While the romance never blossomed, a beautiful platonic relationship flourished.  I treasure the friendship we have and want to make sure it doesn’t get damaged.  I don’t know at this point if I would want anything romantic with him.  I did at some point and it seemed he was lukewarm about it, so things fizzled out.

We set a date to meet: Thursday night!  We shall see.  I guess a fun flirty friend is not a bad thing to have.  As long as we are on the same page Thursday can be a lot fun.

Stay tuned…

“Never close your lips to those whom you have already opened your heart.” – Charles Dickens

Mentally refreshed, physically exhausted and seeing everything with new eyes!

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“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” – Marcel Proust

My plan for this trip to Brazil was to just relax, read and spend time with family.  I go to Brazil at least twice a year, so it has become a routine.  When things become a routine we no longer give the proper appreciation or care to it.  I am blessed to be able to go see my family twice a year.  I know so many people that haven’t seen their parents in years.

Noticing I was becoming blase about it I decided a change of attitude was needed.  I decided to not see it as routine but as a brand new blessing.  I came across that Marcel Proust quote above and sent it to a friend that I knew would appreciate it and support me on this new attitude.

Armed with my new attitude I get to the airport and come face to face with this writing on the wall (in the picture below) at my departing gate.  It seems even the airport is trying to open and refresh my eyes.  Indeed the message is: new eyes, new way to see things.

At the gate for my flight to Brazil

I am not sure I have been 100% successful in seeing Brazil with new eyes. I am a firm believer that recognizing that change is needed and working towards it is in itself a success. The key is moving forward towards your intended goal, the speed at which you do it is less important.

With new resolve and resolution one needs to be constantly reminded to make sure not to fall back into old patterns, views and actions.  Every morning I greet the world with gratitude and I tell myself: It is a brand new day, full of brand new blessings, go out and find and see them!

How about we all start looking at everything with new eyes? How about we don’t assume we already know the outcome of something even if we have performed it 100 times before?  Let’s be in the moment and allow every new moment to surprise us! 

Let’s look at people with new eyes and give them a chance to reintroduce themselves. I am not the person I was yesterday, why do I assume others are still the same?

“Every now and then a man’s mind is stretched by a new idea or sensation, and never shrinks back to its former dimensions.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.

I spent time with my family but there was no reading or resting.  My brother is moving to a house in the back of my mother’s house. I spent every waking hour helping him get that house cleared up and ready to move in.  That little house had become storage space for anything that was no longer wanted.

At the end of the day I was so physically exhausted that I couldn’t think about doing anything other than going to sleep.  For the first time ever I didn’t log into work.  I didn’t check the bank for payments.  I didn’t check emails for customer’s requests.

This is also the first time that I have been told that I look refreshed and happier after returning from a trip. I do love manual labor, the dirtier and messier something is the more I enjoy cleaning.  I let my mind go and focus on the labor at hand.  It is totally cathartic to me.

“Be willing to be a beginner every single morning.”  – Meister Eckart

And here is an odd thing: I didn’t have hives a single time in Brazil. I have had them every day since I have returned.  In Brazil I didn’t follow the gluten free diet I had been trying to follow. I ate whatever I wanted. Does that mean that the hives is not related to what I am eating?  Is it pollution, something at work,  something in my apartment, perhaps it is a combination of factors?  I am continuing to write down all I eat in an effort to pinpoint the culprit.  I do know that stress is a major contributing factor.

My brother’s move is a great thing. My parents are older so they need more assistance and is a great relief to have him near them.

I am blessed to still have my parents. My dad is 80 and still going strong after battling cancer.  He lost a leg to it but he is now stronger than ever.  My mom is turning 83 and even after battling depression and other issues stemming from a mild stroke she is doing amazing.  She doesn’t look anywhere near her age.

As usual every time I go to Brazil my mother returns with me and stays for a couple of weeks.  For her birthday on May 1st we will be spending a couple of days at Foxwoods Casino in CT.  Mom being here means eating, gambling and shopping, but I am trying to pace myself.  Here is to a next several days of celebration and fun!!

“Life is nothing to be very serious about. Life is a ball in your hands to play with. Don’t hold on to the ball.”- Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

***

 

I am a beautiful grateful mess

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I am mess!  I am a beautiful blessed mess!  There is a difference.  There is a big difference.

I have so much to write about.  Unfortunately time has been escaping from me lately.  I leave for Brazil on Saturday and I am trying to leave it all perfect and organized.  I should know better.  Nothing is ever perfect and as organized as I would like.  I just need to be okay with “almost” almost perfect, almost organized.

I apologize in advance for the errors and for the length of this post.

First some dating updates:

The widower is still in the picture but barely. It is disappointing really how.   I wish I had the time to go into detail, and I will try to do it in the future.  For now I will just say that the cause of things cooling down was financial. He hinted that he had spent too much money on me for the first and second date.   That caused me to cancel the 3rd date.  He apologized, and asked for another chance, for another date to talk things through.  I said I would think about it.  We are still texting and he still a nice person.  I get it he was trying to impress me but I don’t need to know that he thinks he overspend.  Of course now he is trying to take it all back but the damage is done.   Perhaps when I return from my trip we will meet and talk things out.  He is still a nice guy, perhaps just a little rusty on the dating department.  We still text every day.

The data architect and I still text and we will be going on a date when I return.  He asked me out a few times, but I have been too busy to accept.  He has been very understanding of my lack of time.  Even if we don’t work romantically I think we can be great friends.

The litigation attorney calls every now and then.  He had to cancel date last week due to a family emergency out of town.  We may get together when I return but I am not so sure.  At this point we have been friendly but I don’t think that we have much of a connection, even for a friendship.

I have been texting  2 other guys: A real estate broker and an Union worker.  I will probably meet them when I return.  I look forward to meeting them.

Even though it may seem I talk to too many guys I find this exchange of ideas, energy and this world of possibility such a source of distraction and even a calm in the chaos that my life is sometimes.

***

I physically feel like a mess.  My body seems to be revolting against me.  It started with the issues with the teeth/gums and the chronic hives.  Then the dizziness and nausea.  Now my right eye is a bit swollen and red on the outer corner.  It is not really painful. At times I feel that something is off.   Then a rash that appeared on my thigh hasn’t gone away and a similar one has appeared on the both sides of my neck.

It seems I turned 52 and my body totally gave up.

What and what I am doing:

Gums/Teeth:  Yesterday I saw a new dentist.  When I got my records from my old dentist I was floored when I calculated how much I had spent on my teeth.  With this one dentist alone since 1999 I spent over $35,000.00.  Now add to that work done prior to 1999 and the work done in Brazil as every time I go to Brazil I get at least a cleaning.  I think it is safe to say I have spent around $50,000 on my teeth and none of it is cosmetic.

I have already a procedure scheduled for when I return from Brazil.  We will be trying to save one of the implants in lower back right side.  The tooth and gum on the front tooth unfortunately I have been told  that I need to wait to finish healing and I have to learn to live with it as there is not much that can be done at this point.

Chronic Hives: The allergist, the dermatologist and the internist all say they can’t find a reason/source and that I should just take an over the counter allergy pill every morning.  I haven’t done that yet.  I want to find the reason and not just pacify the symptoms.

The rash: I thought it was hives but this rash on my left hip is around for the past month. The skin doctor gave me a prescription for a cortisone cream and offered to do a biopsy if doesn’t get better.  I used the cream for a couple of days but half of the time I forget. Now I have a similar rash on my right hip and on both sides of my neck.  I have removed a chain with a cross that I always used and have stopped using lotions and perfume.

The dizziness and the nausea:  I have noticed that I am getting them when I am about to get my period.  This is a new thing but at least it seems to have a reason.  Menopause perhaps? oh the joys of being a woman and aging.

Red/swollen Eye:  I am not sure what it is, perhaps some kind of allergy.  I don’t have the energy and the time to go to a doctor now. When I get to Brazil if it doesn’t magically get better I will see a doctor there.

Thoracic Outlet Syndrome: I really have done nothing about that other than some cupping and acupuncture sessions.  I stopped some of the light weight training I was doing and doing pranks every night and it seemed to get better.  I know that it is not the answer.  I need to have a better solution that just stopping the exercise I was doing.

Hip pain:  I just learned to live with it.  One can get used to anything in live including pain.  I know the exercises I need to do from when I had physical therapy for it.  I just need to get my act together and do them consistently.

My natural doctor friend things that if I cut gluten out of my life and follow an anti-inflammation diet that a lot of what ails me physically will go away.

I did a saliva test from a kit that he gave to me and it showed that I am highly sensitive to gluten.  I was afraid that he was going to say that sugar was the devil in my life but he says that gluten is actually the worst villain.

I am also keeping a food and symptoms journal.  Writing down all I eat and how I feel should help me understand more what is happening to my body and perhaps the source of the itching.

I am also changing all detergent, lotions, etc to more natural hypo-allergenic options.  I am even considering removing the carpeting I have in my bedroom.

My friend also wants me to meditate, do more fun things, drink tea, etc.  I agree, I know stress has a lot to do with it all.  If it is not the cause, it certainty exacerbates it. I have been feeling under constant stress at work and at home.

***

Still, I am so insanely, immensely blessed.   The list of what ails me is long but it is so incredibly small when compared to the list of all my blessings.  I never lose sight of how blessed I am.  So much more to be thankful for that to cry about it.

This is a phase.  This is such a big chance to change my life around and focus on my health and all that is really important to me.

This is a reminder to be grateful and to say thanks.  So Thank you God and the Universe for all the light that shines on me. Thank you for giving me a chance to be better.

“Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

A kiss, a song and a third date

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“If I cease searching, then, woe is me, I am lost. That is how I look at it – keep going, keep going come what may.”  – Vincent van Gogh, The Letters of Vincent van Gogh

Update on the post entitled “3 Last Dates”:

The attorney.  We met again one night when I was out with my sister and a friend.  We are supposed to go out for a drink this week.

I suspect he is on the cheaper side as he says:  “let’s go for a drink, something simple, not complicated”.  I think that “not complicated” means cheap.

I don’t need a guy to spend money on me but when he is going out of his way to be cheap this early on it makes me wonder what will happen later on in the relationship.

Clearly he likes me, so I am not sure why he doesn’t want to go to dinner and spend more time together. Perhaps I am just spoiled because most of my dates include dinner.

I am still not sure how I feel about him but I figure there is no harm in meeting a third time.

The data architect.  He seems like a great guy, always keeping in touch.  He has been trying to see me but we haven’t been able to set a date.  I have been busy with my sister and a friend.  When I was free he had to go away for business.

He just returned to town today and texted me mentioning we should get together.  I need to choose an evening to meet.

I am still not sure how I feel about him.  I will probably meet up for a second time if we find the time.

The Real Estate Agent

We exchanged a few messages after that first date, but then he just faded away.  I think he expected me to contact him.  I didn’t.  I wan’t that interested and didn’t want to lead him on.

“What should I possibly have to tell you, oh venerable one? Perhaps that you’re searching far too much? That in all that searching, you don’t find the time for finding?” – Herman Hesse, Siddhartha

In the meantime I met somebody else.  He is 10 years older than I am. He was a software salesman but now makes money by trading stocks.

We almost didn’t meet.  We were scheduled to meet a couple of months ago but the day before the date he texted me and said that he was dating somebody else.  I was confused as he had just confirmed the date the prior day.  He said he couldn’t date more than one person.

I was not happy but said ok and wished him luck.

Last week I received a message on Match from a guy asking me if I wanted to try meeting again.  I assumed that he was just a guy that I had passed on earlier.  Feeling like he deserved a second chance for reaching out again I said okay without looking at his profile.

Later when I looked at his profile I realized who he was.  Had I realized he was that guy that had canceled on me I would have probably ignored him

I normally never choose the place for the first date but since he insisted that he owed me a nice dinner and there was a new restaurant in my town I wanted to go to I decided to take him up on it and chose it.

We went to a bistro called Vento that serves Italian Coastal cuisine.  I had the branzino with artichoke, tomato and olive sauce, which the chef tried to talk me out of it telling me to choose a more delicate sauce.  I was very happy with my choice.  For dessert I had the key lime tart and it was delicious.

My date was well dressed and charming.  He is a widower having lost his wife last summer.  He seems ready to date but I am not sure. He seems a bit too eager.  Did he really like me that much?

For the second date which happened 3 days later we went to Erminia, a small candlelit Roman restaurant in NY city.  I had fish again and it was good but nothing special.  I had eggplant as an appetizer, again it was okay.  For dessert I had berries and cream.  The meal was good but I expected a little more for the price and setting.  The service though was impeccable.  We were there for hours and never felt rushed.

The conversation was great.  He complimented me many times.  He was polite, thoughtful, honest, charming, an all around great person.

We are supposed to go out this Thursday.  He seems to like me too much.  Yes, there is such a thing when you just meet someone.  It makes me want to run.  I told him to continue meeting other people as I will do the same.  He says he has no interest in meeting anybody else and rather focus on me. He says if it doesn’t work between us then he will go back to Match.  I made sure he knows that I will remain on the site and will date others until I decide to focus on one person.

I have been over-excited about guys on the first few dates in the past only to be left extremely disappointed.  I am not doing that again even if I feel it could go somewhere.  I rather go slow and use the “wait and see” approach.

At the end of the second date when he dropped me off I leaned over to give him a kiss good night on the cheek, he turned and it became a little more than that.  It was good even though I had gum in my mouth.  I wouldn’t mind kissing him again.  In fact I want to kiss him again.

One day after the second date he wrote me a song and send me the video.  It was a fun song, really creative, talking about having me in his mind all the time.  He composes, sings and plays the guitar.  He used to be in a band in the past.  His voice is beautiful. I can’t help but feel special. No one has ever written me a song before.

Slowly and cautiously I proceed.  And I still search knowing fully well that what I search will eventually find me.  When I least expect it will slowly walk in and easily, peacefully win my heart. Or perhaps not.  Perhaps it will crash in, cause a major disturbance and just consume me whole. It will be awesome either way!  It will happen, I believe!

“When someone seeks,” said Siddhartha, “then it easily happens that his eyes see only the thing that he seeks, and he is able to find nothing, to take in nothing because he always thinks only about the thing he is seeking, because he has one goal, because he is obsessed with his goal. Seeking means: having a goal. But finding means: being free, being open, having no goal.”  – Herman Hesse, Siddhartha

 

 

Pretty words, no action

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J, the guy mentioned here: https://blessedwithastarontheforehead.com/2015/08/26/a-baby-made-me-cry/ called me 3 weeks ago.

We say hello to each other normally once or twice a year.  It is always nice catching up. He always asks me about my writing and I ask about his.  He was writing some screenplays. It is always a friendly conversation and never more than that. That is until a couple of weeks ago when he got in touch via Whatsup.

After catching up for a little bit he started reminiscing about the time when we first met and our train rides years ago. I didn’t back away from it or stopped him from going down memory lane. I enjoyed that innocent time in the train and was glad that he thought of them the same way I did.

I also remember that he got emotional when I chose to give the friendship back then a break. I didn’t think it was wise to continue socializing in the train since we were developing feelings for each other and he was married. Looking back I probably wanted him to say he would get divorced. He didn’t. I started taking a different train and eventually I met EX (the one that broke my heart).

It is so interesting for me to look back at that post and read about being upset that he was having a baby. This blog really helps me to see how far I have come. And in some instances, how I barely moved.

This time he mentioned he was in another state interviewing for a job. After many years in a steady job, he quit and took a somewhat high profile job, which he almost immediately quit. I was shocked at his quitting but understood his reasons. I won’t mention much more about that as I want to make sure this cannot be traced back to him.

This time he was overly sentimental saying he missed me and missed what we had in the past, which to be honest, what we had was a big “What If”.  What we had was the idea that if we were free we could be together and have this great love story. We were never free at the same time to see if anything would ever come of it.

The reason why I bring all this up is that he said something that truly surprised me. He said: “I will always love you”.  I was speechless. I was shocked. I know he always liked me and I always liked him, but love is a whole different ball game.  We never used the word love before.

I struggled for a reply.  He insisted: I really mean it.

What does one say to that? I can’t say the same back to him.  I don’t love him or ever loved him. I think I just changed the subject. Before hanging up he said that we would meet up for a drink to celebrate my birthday. Then he said: no, we are not going to wait that long, let’s meet before then.

Did I think we would meet up? I knew he would ask me and I wanted to be strong and say no. The question to me was if I would be able to say no.

The joke was on me. I didn’t hear from him again. My birthday came and went and he forgot to even mention it.  Of course I know this is for the best. I know it, and he probably knows it too. He is married. I am bored. Not a great combination. When we spoke he was emotionally drained from job hunting. I know I was a relief, I was a distraction.

I don’t want to be someone’s distraction. I don’t want a married man. I don’t want drama. We often mistake drama for excitement.

I wanted to write about it here just to illustrate how a smart person like me that knows better, can get tempted by hearing just a few charming words. I am not blaming him. I am not blaming anyone.  I am just reaffirming what I know: I have to guard myself and my feelings.

And once again I remind myself:  Believe in actions, no words! 

 

The last 3 dates

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The Litigation Attorney

We met on Match.com and after some back and forth messages I gave him my phone number.  I have no rhyme or reason for giving or not giving my phone number to someone.  It is all about a feeling and how a person asks.

After some short texts we met in person at a wine bar called Pino.  It was a tiny cute place and the manager was very nice.

We both like to talk a lot, so we had a very lively fun conversation. I just had one glass of rose wine and he had a couple of tequila drinks.  There was no food involved.  I had eaten before hand because he asked me for “drinks” so I assumed correctly that there was no food involved.

He is single, never married, no kids.  Just like me.  He is selling his apartment in the city located just a couple of blocks from my office, and buying a house on the New Jersey shore.  I don’t envision retiring and spending my days on a boat so I already see issues if this relationship is to go forward.

It was more friendly than romantic, but I need another date to confirm it.  We have been exchanging a few texts and a couple of quick phone calls.  We are scheduled to go out tonight and I am still trying to decide if I should go through with it.

The Data Architect

We met on POF. He is Scottish living in the US for a long time.  He is divorced with one  11 year daughter.

He works from his Hoboken, NJ home for a company several hours away.  He knows I like mosaic and whimsical art so he has been sending me pictures of every mosaic and art work he has encountered along his way.  And there has been a lot.  I thought that was cute and  thoughtful.

We agreed to meet at the subway on 33rd and Park and from there we rode to Astor Place.  Once there we saw some street art and started walking around.  I love that area!  At one point we stopped by a bakery and we each had a miniature cupcake. It was okay but nothing I would care to eat again.

After a few more blocks of walking around and him explaining the details of this once very Ukrainian neighborhood I saw a restaurant called Yuca Bar and immediately became interested. I love fried yucca.

It was a Latin restaurant with lots of Brazilian flavors.  I had the passion fruit caipirinha and it was on point.  I was disappointed with the yucca fries as it was not just the root boiled and fried but a mixture of mashed yucca breaded and fried. It was okay but not the real thing. He had guacamole and chips and I had the skirt steak and rice.  He is vegetarian.

After dinner, we went to a dive bar called Blue & Gold and talked about soccer while I sipped a club soda and he had draft beer.  This bar had the cheapest drinks I have ever seen in Manhattan.

We then took the Subway back to Grand Central.  He walked me to my train and we hugged good bye.

We have been exchanging texts since then.  I don’t think there is any romance but I may go on a second date to confirm that.  He asked me on a second date this Saturday but I am busy so we will choose another day.

The Commercial Real Estate Agent

We met on POF over a month ago. In that time he went on a hiking vacation in Argentina and still managed to contact me every day.  He doesn’t have my number so we just exchange messages on POF. He said he gave me his number.  Maybe he did.  Maybe I will use it.

We finally met Tuesday at Stout, a pub on 41st street.   I had eaten before meeting him so it was mostly drinks.  I had Prosecco, he had draft beer and we shared fingers.  All was delicious.

He is divorced with 2 teenage daughters. He just bought a house very far and now commutes over 2 and a half hours each way every day. That has me already thinking that geographically we are not an ideal match.

He is a very nice gentleman though and even though, again, I didn’t feel any real chemistry I am willing to go on a second date and see what happens.

***

All 3 are very interesting guys and I am glad I met them.  I am willing to go on a second date with all of them. I do also see some issues with all of them.  Are these real issues or am I just working extra hard to find something wrong with them?  who knows…  I am trying to keep an open mind and go on second dates before dismissing a nice person.

“One of the reasons the team on NCIS works so well-is that they live by their leader’s rules-which are not a secret .
What are your rules/standards? Do the people in your life know what they are? Do you hold grudges/resentments when they don’t measure up? Do you pretend that everything is fine-when it’s not-and close up a little every day?
And most importantly-
When was the last time YOU reviewed/upgraded your standards/expectations rules-and took a look at the impact around you/checked in?
(Hint-most people live from rules/standards/expectations created from reactions/perceptions formed around the age of six)
Might be time for a review/upgrade……..”
-Dave Rudbarg

 

 

 

Always grateful for lessons

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“If you want to know your past life, look into your present condition; if you want to know your future life, look at your present actions.” – Sogyal Rinpoche

I didn’t go to see the Broadway musical “Beautiful” with the guy that I mentioned a couple of posts ago.  He is recovering from alcohol and drug abuse. He had also just quit cigarettes when I met him.  He has issues.  We all have them, but he has more issues than I am willing to deal with.

I thought we could be friends, as I often think of everyone I meet.  He said he was okay with just friendship.  We exchanged texts and phone calls and in the first couple of days all was fine.  Then it got weird.  He started texting and calling at odd hours, sometimes after midnight.  At other times in the middle of a conversation he would say he needed to call me back and never would.  At times some of the conversations didn’t make much sense.  I sensed something was off, but I kept trying to be a friend.

It was becoming both painful and annoying.  I realized I couldn’t be the friend he needed.  He needed a supportive, understanding, sponsor-type of a friend.  I stopped picking up the phone late at night and started calling him out on the behavior that I thought was not ok.  He then just stopped calling all together.

What I learned from that experience is that sometimes you have to be selfish and think of yourself first.  Something is off with him and I am not going to stick around to find out what that is.

Be a friend but do not lose yourself in the process.  Do not think that it is your job to save everyone. Respect yourself first.

I haven’t had cable/internet/phone for the past several days due to the heavy windstorm we had starting last Friday.  The windstorm was scary. I have to walk 3 blocks from the train station to my apartment and the wind was so strong that I actually had to stop and hold on to lampposts not to be blown away and I am not a small creature.

Nature is powerful. It is beautiful. It is a wonder, but it can also be scary at times.  Nature needs to be respected.  At times such as this I am reminded of the need to respect nature and its force.

What am I doing to respect nature? The best way I know how to show respect it is through conservation. Growing up in Brazil I was reminded daily by my parents that water and electricity are expensive so I grew up with the mindset of using only what is necessary.  I also believe in reusing, re-purposing and cleaning my surroundings.

I decided to pay even more attention to my efforts of showing respect for Mother Earth.  Every little action builds up and promotes change.  It starts with me.

On those evenings without cable I joked with friends that I actually had to talk to my sister.  It is amazing how much TV is part of my life.  Even though I rarely sit down and watch something, the TV is always on in the background, especially now that my sister is using it to help her with fine tuning her English listening skills.

We normally don’t realize how much we appreciate something until it is gone.  We also normally don’t realize how much we depend on something until it is gone.  In this case it is minor, it is just cable and internet, but I can see how much I depend on so many other things and how I take those things and people for granted. Realizing that people and things that are part of my everyday can just one day disappear forces me to take another look at them and me.

Do I really need all that is around me? Am I choosing to surround myself with only people and things that add to my life or am I wasting time on things that are actually detrimental to me?

Be grateful for all you have.  Show people and things gratitude.  Get rid of the old and unused things.  Get rid of the negative and painful people and relationships.  

 

 

 

Trying to be blessed, not stressed

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“If you really want to escape the things that harass you, what you’re needing is not to be in a different place but to be a different person.” – Seneca

I miss being here. I miss writing. I miss reading and replying to comments. It feels like I have been away for ages. It has been only one week. 🙂

My absence is due to too much work, little time, not feeling well and lacking the energy.

It has been a crazy stressful past several days. It started with barely being able to lift my head from the pillow on Monday morning. I had been dizzy on Saturday and Sunday mornings but on Monday it was really bad. Don’t judge me but I still went to work. I had to schedule the payment of bonuses to the brokers. There would have been a riot if I didn’t show up.

After I managed to get up and get to work, I declared I was there to only do this one task and go home. Result: I ended up staying even later than usual.

The brokers and management hadn’t yet finalized their numbers. It took them hours to agree on the final numbers, after weeks of negotiations. I also had to juggle the money from different accounts to cover everything. Then the brokers have different requests on tax and deductions on the bonus.

On top of that I have other stuff looming over my head. I have an audit I filed that will have to be amended. Any amendment is sure to draw the eyes of the regulators. Then I have another audit around the corner that I have to compile numbers for. I have to decide on a new health insurance for the company plus work on setting up a HSA plan. No one will be happy with the new Health insurance choices.

“You must learn to let go. Release the stress. You were never in control anyway.” – Steve Maraboli

Some customers are months behind on their payment so I have to chase them around. Some are in Singapore, India, Portugal, etc – it would be exciting if I could go see them in person. Then there is the regular stuff, regular payroll, check and pay expense reports, check and pay vendor’s invoices, etc

Stress doesn’t appropriately cover what I go through at work. Don’t take all this whining as a complaint. I am just giving you a picture of the many hats I wear. One way or another I get it all done.

Then there is the stress of worrying about my elderly parents in Brazil, and wanting them to be okay. Also having my sister here and trying to guide her on getting a job and starting her life here.

Getting back to what ails me. My sister suspects I have Vertigo ( Labyrithintis) as she knows some people that had it and the symptoms seemed similar. When I described the symptoms to my Naturopathic doctor friend he thought it was Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome, a condition that most regular medical doctors don’t think it exists. He says that given my age (menopause around the corner), stress and the symptoms I described he thinks it is a classic case of it. I have taken a saliva test that will determine what is going on. It will take one week for the results to come in.

Until then I wait.  I know the stress is over my need to control things.  I need to have everything performing optimally.  I need to have my family happy.  I need to be perfect at work.  When things are not as such I stress.  I didn’t think I was stressed.  I just thought I was just a tad tired.

Time to listen to my body. Time to think about leading a less stressed, stressful life.  Time to make changes.

Still feeling blessed – always!

“We must have a pie. Stress cannot exist in the presence of a pie.” – David Mamet