Does It Mean a Thang If You Ain’t Got That Ring?

After years of riding that roller coaster of love, I’ve arrived at a new place: The future.
Sure, the last go around included a discussion of moving in together, possibly having a child together, but it was all contingent upon the completion of a year apart. All those things were far away in some distant plan I couldn’t yet visualize, and I really only had a matter of weeks to mull them over before the ideas were eviscerated. (See previous posts)
I didn’t think I would ever love someone in a meaningful way ever again, so I really hadn’t revisited my own feelings about marriage, children or “family.” I pretty much had the love of the only male who would ever matter to me forever, so what was there to think about?

slob

Single life can be so fulfilling

Now I’m stuck in the present– a deep well of emotional uncertainty. Sure it’s cool, comfortable, and giving me life, but it’s a limited view of the world around me. I don’t know how deep this goes, if these feelings will ever run out, what the “light” outside the tunnel is to me.
Worst of all, I’m a bit afraid to think about any of that for fear I’ll be disappointed.
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve chosen to spend my time focused on the great things I possess rather than mull over the things I don’t. Sure, I thought I’d have a better job and be more financially stable by now. I expected to remain married until death, and a child, which I now have and adore, had never really been “in the picture” because of prior struggles in my life.
However, I am healthier than I’ve ever been. My son is brilliant, and makes me proud every day. I have tons of artistic, loving, intelligent and impressive friends whom I enjoy. I feel as though I spend my time with the people I love doing the things I love.

ladies

Cupcake Church 4 LIFE!

And then, of course, there’s my love.
Yes, I can choke the word out now. After weeks of struggling to accept the vulnerability that it drags along with it, I revel in knowing the love I have for this man I have the pleasure of calling “mine” is requited.
I feel it’s warmth radiate from his heavenly body when he pulls me into him. I see it fold into tiny stars that line his eyes as he smiles. Most importantly, I feel it when he goes above his own comfort level to make me happy. People tell you all the time, “I just want YOU to be happy,” but he doesn’t just say it. He makes it happen.
He knows I like to take photographs, so he suggests we go to some of the most beautiful places around to capture them. Together. He knows I like the charm of a street fair with local vendors, so he plans a trip to the farmer’s market. Together. He knows my son is the most important being on this planet to me, so he suggests kid-friendly activities for us to do… together.
When I wake up with irrational nightmares of his absence; fears of him leaving us behind like everyone else, the sound of his heartbeat as he holds me to his chest is my deafening mantra of comfort.
I know for a fact, I’m happy. I love him, and I want nothing more than to be with him. He’s genuine, kind, benevolent. While I’ll always want him, I’m finding I need him more each day.

happy

Luckiest woman evah.

With that intimacy comes questions, though. (What I surprise, Malinda has to question everything)
Mr. Pahhh rasss has made it abundantly clear, he doesn’t want to get married. He doesn’t want to have children.
Ever.
He literally just wants to keep floating through this life, enjoying it as it comes at him. I can’t blame him. It’s a beautiful thing, life is, and we never really control it, so what’s the point in trying.
But what does that mean for “us?”
He’s made a very important promise to me… that he won’t leave until I tell him to go. That he will never stray to another, and I’m starting to believe that with our histories of unfaithful spouses, hurtful divorces and heartbreak, he’s telling the truth.
That goes for the no marriage and kids thing, too, though. I believe he knows what he doesn’t want, and I would never try to change his mind.
I just don’t really know if I mind.
Marriage is great. I’m a huge fan of it. What’s better than a celebration of and dedication to love? (Money, sex, chocolate, whiskey… okay, there are a few things) As much as I love the idea of marriage and I try to share in the excitement surrounding matrimony, I could be happy with someone for the rest of my life even if they didn’t want to sign that contract.
I understand that after divorcing once, some people aren’t exactly eager to get back into that tux and slap a ring on someone’s finger. Divorces are tough on the heart and soul, and sometimes the pocketbook. I grappled with the idea of being 25 and divorced for some time. I felt like a quitter; I felt like I had betrayed my own supreme ideals.
Now, I’m just like, “Meh.”
Getting divorced was the best decision I ever made. I’m no so scared of it I would never agree to marry again, but I’m not exactly dying for a diamond. Having a companion is the best part of marriage, and as long as I could have a companion I love to be with, I’m good.
Babies, on the other hand… sigh.
Again, I never really thought I’d have another child, multiple times in my life. After Cullen, I did vow never to have a baby unless I had a solid foundation with the other potential parent, but that was about it.
My second life love had expressed a desire to procreate, rather unexpectedly, and, rather unexpectedly, I was quite responsive to the idea. He was a great father to his daughter and really treated my son well.
I wanted Cullen to have a sibling so he could avoid being a spoiled, self-centered only child. Plus, there’s few things better in the world than the bond between sisters and brothers. He’s so imaginative and active it would be good for him (and me) to have another child to run and gun with.
Also, I feel like I was robbed, somewhat, of the traditional experience of bringing a child in to the world. You know, the images of a man and woman lying in bed with all four of their hands touching her mountain of a belly erupting from the sheets. Days spent painting walls and assembling beds and nights filled with singing songs to that same mountain. The two peering into each others eyes as the purple oatmeal-covered being is finally placed into their arms.
Yeah, I didn’t have that.
I should’ve just fastened a pair of boxing gloves to my hands for nine months since I spent the entire time bobbing and weaving through 40 rounds of knock-down drag-out fights. It would’ve been nice to have that “picture-perfect” pregnancy experience… but I didn’t.
I’ve been reading a lot of articles lately about couples choosing not to have kids, and one thing they always nail is the concept that this “family fantasy” is really nothing more than a societal norm. It’s what we’ve all been programmed to believe is the path to the end goal of “happiness.” That doesn’t make it right, and it certainly doesn’t make it right for everyone.
So is it right for me?
Some part of me desperately wants to have another baby. It’s exciting, and emotional and, honestly, indescribable. On the other hand, I find myself wondering if I should’ve had a baby at all.
I think about how free I would be to pursue all the adventures I love so much. I get a bit resentful of the fact that more and more people have “child-free” policies at barbecues and parties, not because I find their choices offensive, but because it makes it fucking difficult for me to find babysitters. (Honestly, it would be better for this “us v. them” battle between the childless and child-having to just relax a bit. Let’s just accept each other and move on). I get frustrated asking, “Is this movie appropriate to show a child?” “Will he be still and quiet to enough for that place?” “Is it wrong to go to this activity and leave a child behind?”

cartman

… except anything that an irresponsible adult would do.

Now that I’ve made so many changes in my life, my realm of desire has just exploded, too. I live a substance-free existence. I work out. I want to go back to school and get a new job. But I barely have enough time to manage all that with a 3-year-old as it is. He’s just now old enough that he can stay with grandma and grandpa much easier for longer periods of time without many problems.
Honestly, I’m enjoying the marginal freedom I have. Do I really want to start over again with a demanding, fragile newborn?
Let me sigh even harder… SIIIIIGHHHHHHHHHH.
I’m not 21 anymore. The time I have left to make mistakes and dick around is ticking away, and I still have no fucking idea what it is I want from what little I have left. On one hand, I’m a little scared and upset that I’ve been denied an option for the future against my will… That if I stay with this man I adore I will be forced to remove several other possibilities — whether they are or aren’t societal norms — from the agenda. I really don’t like being told what I can’t do. But the more I think about it, the more I understand why we get along so well: We both seem to really enjoy living in a chaotic good world.
I have no idea what I want, because I don’t spend much time thinking about it. I really spend much, if not all my time, focusing on what’s happening right now or in the immediate future (by that I mean, “What’s going on this weekend?”)
How is it possible to be such a control freak and spend your life just going with the flow? Is it possible for me to just take this love as it’s given with no consideration for where it’s going? “Planning for the future” is one of those things society tells us we “have” to do, too, but why? Why does it have to go anywhere? Because I’m almost 30? Because planning something somehow will protect me from being hurt?
My father always says, “If you fail to plan, you can plan to fail.” I really don’t think love and companionship can be set to an agenda or verified with an image of what it’s “supposed” to look like. But I also don’t want to wake up five years from now feeling like I’ve failed my heart, again. The only thing I know for sure is that I love this man. I’m honored he’s chosen me to be his partner, and I believe he wants to keep it that way because I make him happy. Shouldn’t that be enough?

Breaking All the Non-Rules

Four years later, I’ve learned a great many things. Some dismal realizations about the fragmented, terrified nature of my generation. Some reminders that the world is still as sweet as we once dreamed it would be.
After my divorce, I believed I would never find a love like that again. To some degree, I believe this is still true, but I find comfort in the fact I don’t want to be loved by someone who doesn’t challenge me to be a better version of myself.
I even felt guilty after I fell in love a second time; I felt as though I’d betrayed the most sacred vow, as death had not done us part, but it was invigorating to know the elusive emotion was still alive. Hidden, but alive.
I suppose that was the “Jesus” relationship. After it’s bloody crucifixion, that horrid crash and burn, the motherfucker rose again, and again. Just when I believed the return of Christ was just another brilliantly crafted myth, the bearded savior revealed himself as a true contender for my heart.
My neurosis hasn’t calmed completely. I’ve spent far too many hours letting my thoughts about this man splinter and race like blurred taillights down the highways to hell. “Does he want to BE with me? or is this just another comfortable convenience?” “What are we doing here?” “Who is this long-distance woman who continues captivating his attention?” “Is it my business?” “Am I just an option?” “Is he serious?”
Maybe most importantly: “Am I serious?”
The more I dissect, the more I feel I haven’t learned a damn thing from the years spent in the modern world of Millenial non-dating (trust me, you aren’t allowed to use that word). I was still attracted to the same type of non-committal guys, the ones who want to drop panties and then drop phone numbers with any and every set of marginally-nice titays. The ones who still acknowledge other woman in your presence, keeping their options open at all times. Keeping you hidden and secret to ensure you don’t mess that all up, then acting like you’re the crazy one.
These are the guys we find attractive, and then we wonder, “Where are all the good ones at?”
A few months ago, I was asking myself about all these infuriating topics again, I realized I was still playing the incredibly frustrating and, for lack of a better term, fucking ridiculous game we all consider the “new normal.”
The dating game goes a little like this:
1. Decide whether you actually like this person through about 20-35 days of trying to read impossible signals and deciphering Facebook/text messages.
2. Continue reading stupid Elite Daily, Cosmopolitan and other nonsensical Internet “list” literature about flirtation, attraction, etc. and drive yourself crazy wondering if there is, in fact, attraction happening. Because, hey, you couldn’t possibly just trust what you fucking feel, right? Verify with a source!
3. Maybe go on a date, but don’t you fucking dare call it a date. Millennials don’t “date.” There is time together with shared food and beverages and maybe even some sex, but even the word “date” implies a level of commitment. #ewwww
4. Don’t talk about the fact you might actually like each other until at least six weeks of not dating has occurred. It doesn’t matter if you’ve already got a designated toothbrush at their apartment, you have to remain cool, calm and collected, unattached as much as possible. Sure you think about the dude all the time… wait nope. You DON’T. Don’t even admit it to yourself.
All these steps will ensure the transition into step five:
5. Remain in a state of uncomfortable, almost unbearable ambiguity for eeeeh, for ambiguity’s sake, like maybe five, six or so weeks. Are they still going to be seeing other people (likely, and don’t you dare ask about who any other chick is, be COOL) Does that mean I should still talk to other people just so I don’t seem like I’m putting all my eggs in one basket (yes)?
But I don’t want to date (fuck, I said it) anyone else… Irrelevant. This new world is all about leaving as many doors open as you can get away with, always ensuring you have an escape from the room you currently share, even if that room has everything you could ever want right there.
When did we get so terrified of each other? When did we collectively become such pussies when it comes to falling in love, or like, or marginal attraction? Jesus Christ, we will jump out of planes, base jump from a cliff, eat raw fish, in fact we now pride ourselves on doing/seeing/being something nobody has ever dreamed up before, but we absolutely refuse to allow ourselves to put our hearts out there like we’re teenagers again.
I’ve been feeling especially adolescent lately…or for the last several months. I’ve got the stomach flip. The butterflies. The daylong daydreams of touching his hair and his lips. Elation at my favorite feature… his voice– alive with laughter and clear as a bell. It literally sounds like the wavelength of joy and destroys any darkness that lingers from a bad day.
I’ve tossed my better judgement to the wind just for a few hours of his presence. I’ve fibbed to my loved ones about where I’m going just to buy more time with him. I’ve filled my life with inconveniences, wasted resources, ignored my duties as an employee, a friend and sometimes even a parent because he is so intoxicating… so comfortable… on my wavelength in so many ways it’s uncanny.
Sleeping with someone’s face on your face is supposed to eventually get old, right? Eventually you want their tree trunk legs off your fucking torso so you can breathe when you sleep, right? Nope. I can’t get enough of everything he has to offer, and his offering is exactly what I want– genuine, humorous, adventurous, kind and generous. That’s it. I want nothing else but his time and affection.
No matter how this pans out, I’ll forever be thankful for this man for restoring my faith in the human heart. I never thought I would be here again, considering the potential for a real connection with another man; I thought I was only left with memories of what Carrie Bradshaw called “The Zsa Zsa Zsu,” but here I am… reminded it can be waiting literally just one flight of stairs and a hallway away.
So here’s the real bottom line: Do the rules (or lack thereof) really matter? I read an article online that compared this tendency to over-analyze and evaluate every aspect of your affections to putting up a barbed-wire fence around a tree. Sure you can protect the tree, but you can’t fucking enjoy the tree! You can’t climb it. You can’t get near it, so what’s the point of protecting it?
I think I’m finished living in this maelstrom of nonsense and I’m ready to just enjoy what’s in front of me. I have the pleasure of sitting across the table from a man I truly enjoy all the time. I get to go to sleep with him and wake up (in a panic) next to him every night. I get to hear that joyful noise of his voice every morning, every time he quietly says, “I like you” during pillow talk, every time he tells me a joke to cheer me up every time he reminds me that he’ll be alright as long as I’m there. Plus we goin’ on a god damn cruise, bitches.
Sure it seems like the environment is working against us all the time, but I just want this tree to grow and be strong in a natural state. Is that too much to ask?

Terror of the Alpha: Part 3

You can say “fuck him” all you want in your own head, but secretly you know you are your own worst enemy.
Since you’re already a slave to the sins of the past why not start there to develop your strategy for self destruction?

Go ahead and assume every shitty thing that anyone’s ever done before is about to happen again, so you can be sure to keep your blocking arm out. Keep joy at a healthy distance. Smother out any happiness that may be right in front of you because you’re too fucking scared.
Lord knows you can’t risk another human ripping out what’s left of your heart and devouring it right before he leaves. You can’t risk being hurt…again.
So yeah, convince yourself it’s better to feel nothing.
Hold in everything until the words fall from your eyes in salty droplets as he peacefully sleeps next to you…oblivious to his crushing power.
Always remember the Karmic kicker, though; You’ll never be able to give yourself to another if you’re mentally keeping him at Heisman length.
You’ll never revel in the glory of companionship. You’ll never have the unadulterated feeling of attraction or affection. You’ll always ensure everything falls apart before it can ever really begin.

You will choose the Omega to this Alpha.

I know you want to be safe, but stop cock-blocking yourself. Let the past be the past and unwrap this present of the present.

Terror of the Alpha: Part 2

Who is this woman I’ve been flirting circles around for how many cycles now?

She isn’t the woman I used to know — convinced loneliness was the hand Fate dealt, romanticizing herself, and forever standing guard at the gate of her Sacré-Cœur.

She’s fiery like the cosmos, the young and burning blue center of the entire system. All other bodies revolve around her, gravitating inward. She’s not another object simply existing; She’s become the sun.

She’s comfortable. Flushed and purified of her previous sins and willing to accept a new truth from a bearded savior. Now only memories of the forgiven pave the way for a new trespasser.

Like a new crush, I’m obsessed with this woman; Her laughter could saturate every cathedral rafter with silvery delight. Her hips sway to a silent song with every step. Her azure irises fixate on the heavens hazed by Saturday night festivities, ravenously consumed alongside the second Christ. Coming again.

Who is this woman? I’m not asking about her magnificence… That’s been evident all along, but I don’t believe I’ve ever met her before… this woman “improved” by the presence of man.

Terror of the Alpha: Part 1

Forget an ocean abyss or a YMCA locker room. The modern dating world is one of the most frightening places on the planet. I’ve been banished to this realm for years, wondering if I really did just die and sent to hell for my sins. This current ride has been no different– horrifying, exhilarating, filled with ambiguity.

I guess fearing a nasty end to bout of dating isn’t enough; Now I’ve started fearing the beginning.

I found some writings from the last few months, and the ebb and flow of chaos and serenity is astounding.

Enjoy.

“Post raping. Thoughts racing.
What am I doing here, again? Side of the road with my thumb out hoping to catch the ride of my life.
So starved for any affections that i gobble up every drop of cum slung my way and call it ‘intimacy.’
I’m no rape victim. Some of this truly is my fault. Hot whiskey breath and cold fan-blown nights. I consented, even wanted them.

Anything to feel closer to him. Anything to connect like tangled phone cords in a heap on the mattress.

Anything to feel any thing.
Not just thirsty but hungry and willing? Easy prey, my friend.
Anyone can blow their own horn, but nobody is obligated to acknowledge the sweetness of its tune until you’ve learned to play it skillfully.
So, get your life together.
You want respect and dignity? Earn it for yourself. Stop fucking hitch hiking and get your own car. Because you can’t pick a passenger if you’re not in the driver’s seat.”

Chocolate Dicks for V-Day

Wow. This Valentine’s Day I think instead of eating a box of chocolates, I should be stuck with a bag of dicks.

I believe people feel too entitled these days; Sometimes it’s carry over from traditional or conservative rearing; Sometimes it’s this ridiculous trend of individuals growing increasingly more selfish; Sometimes people are just jerks.

Ultimately, if someone takes time or expends resources making a gesture for you on a manufactured holiday like Valentine’s Day, or any day for that matter, the only words out of your mouth should be these, “Thank you. I appreciate everything you’ve done.”

Is that what I chose to say this week when I found out my “I-don’t-know-what-we-are” partner in crime kinda didn’t plan any form of date for this weekend… at all? Nope. He’d asked me a few weeks ago if I wanted to go out with him on V-Day. Naturally I said yes, but that was the last of it.

No, “Hey, make sure you’re free for an hour or two at 8 p.m.” No, “Where would you like to go?” There was a meme though. Stating he would literally be staring at a wall alone on Feb. 14.

Hilarious.

Instead, I learn I should be expecting one or two items to be delivered to my office Friday and having drinks with a DVD marathon is scheduled for the big day. The items are being delivered because he doesn’t want anyone to know he brought them to work just for me. They’re being delivered on the day everyone knows are reserved for the sidechick. And there will be no date.

I cannot lie. My butt was bruising from the hurt.

Even after I let him know he had sort of asked to go out before and the most uncomfortable conversation two people who are dating but not dating could ever have, he made it clear he wasn’t really interested in veering from his plan to do nothing (except have sex, of course).

The whole point of this silly exercise in gift-giving is exposure. Let’s not even lie. People who want valentines want them because they are public displays of affection. They are a way to shout to the world that “This is the person I dig right now,” and that’s the bottom line.

So when this man tells me he wants to stay in and hang out all day, leave his gifts anonymously, my red, foil Valentine’s Day balloon burst.

But then, I thought about the whole scenario and realized I needed to stop blowing so much hot air. Honestly, I do recall telling him the only demand on Valentine’s Day was was to eat a brownie. He remembered and planned for that. (Win) I’ve told him plenty of times I’m easy-to-please, and I don’t require a lot of material excess to have a good time. (Win/win) He did want to have my gifts sent to my office Friday, because that is kind of the point, right? You don’t want her to be left out of the office rose-petal-feeding frenzy…

So, naturally, the next thought was: “What. The. Fuck. Is wrong with you, girl?” I’m a real bitch. Here’s a perfectly good man you really like making an effort to give you a gift on mid-February day. Nobody owes you a damn thing. Be fucking grateful.

Why do we let Valentine’s Day get under our sensitive skin so much? Why do we care so much about broadcasting the fact we are sought or desired by another human to others? Why do we take it so personally?

I mean, it’s not like he’s trying to ditch me on V-Day. He promptly rattled off a long list of activities he sort of assumed would be happening… a workout (possibly together), maybe having lunch (together), maybe a little outdoor adventure (together, with my child) followed by drinks and TV at home (trust me, I love TV marathons). He was still planning to spend his time with me that day (and night), so why in the hell was I so upset?

What right do I have to insinuate his plans, his offerings were not “good enough” for me?

That bottom line.

His actions convey the message that he doesn’t want anyone to know he associates with me. I interpreted the whole thing as a confirmation that he, in fact, doesn’t want to “shout it from the rooftops,” which would either open him up to embarrassing questions or kill any chances with future or current romantic interests. Or maybe, just maybe, there are some people who don’t want to broadcast every detail of their lives to the rest of the world and truly do want to just do what makes them happy with the people that make them happiest.

Whatever the case, I’m already going into this weekend with a chip on my shoulder. I don’t think it’s fair to be “upset” that someone didn’t do things the way you silently wanted them to, but I also don’t see what the big deal is about making a little effort to show an awesome chick that she’s worth some probing questions, a few lost phone numbers or a tiny shout from a balcony.

One thing I know for sure is that chicks who act spoiled and entitled in the fashion I did this week probably should only get one thing to eat this Valentine’s Day — a bag of dicks.

Dream Man

I met my dream man, and for a short sleep he was mine…again, and then again, again. An uncanny match for my ravenous passions who still inspired love for keeping your boots tied to the ground.
Just as visions pass in slumber, we drifted. Swirled round one another, trying to escape the gravity of reality.
He wasn’t Ken, and I’m certainly not Barbie. I’ll take pound signs and Hitler ‘staches over exuberant cars and rose bouquets any day. A game of cards surpasses the romanticism of dinner in the moonlight, not because I’m not a sucker for romance, but because my heart sings a different song.
I’ve never felt a harmony like ours… a harmony so intoxicating it was surreal… a harmony that was a blessing and a curse.
Like a hit of LSD, the delirium is delightful, magical even, but it’s still delirium. You spend every moment in an ontological battle between heart and mind. Sure I can touch this idol of a specimen. I can caress his hair and kiss his lips; I can admire his beautiful mind and feel the laughter in my core, but what parts of him are real? Anything?
Then, the moment you wake up, deliver the heartbreaking pinch to your arm, he’s gone.
Just like the dream you knew him to be.