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?

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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 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.”

ANOTHER blog about #Ferguson

Kim Kardashian didn’t break the Internet; Protestors in Ferguson did.

Around 7 p.m. Monday, every Facebook feed in the United States of America was fully engulfed with rants, jokes or snippets about the grand jury’s decision not to indict a police officer for fatally shooting Michael Brown. By Tuesday morning, five of the top 10 trending tags on Twitter were related to the #Ferguson protests, and Internet was thick with a cloud of photos, blogs and news stories about the unrest.

“Yeah, sure, go ahead and ruin businesses in your town. THAT makes sense.”

“We have to stop pretending like race DOESN’T matter in this country.”

“Dancing With the Stars was interrupted. #rageface”

“If you don’t want to die, don’t punch a cop in the face!”

These are all valid commentaries, save for anger about a television show– sorry, a terrible television show. I can understand rage in the event the LOST season finale was cut short. Honestly, I’m a little pleased to see it all considering how complacent everyone has become in this country. Most of the time, issues that have little to no direct, measurable impact on our lives are filed away into the “don’t give a shit” file, but I guarantee you, discussions around the Thanksgiving tables this year might involve something more substantive than football.

The reason why people of all colors, all social standings, professions and sexes are compelled to say something, I believe, is because Ferguson is a microcosm of a nationwide problem. Men being shot and/or killed by overzealous, perhaps even overly aggressive police, is nothing unique to that community. It happens all the time, all over the country. I’ve had to cover it many times right here in Oklahoma:
http://www.swoknews.com/misc-columns/daniel-martin-autopsy-report-radio-transmissions
http://archive.lawton-constitution.com/Default/Scripting/ArticleWin.asp?From=Search&Key=TLC/2008/09/29/1/Ar00101.xml&CollName=TLC_APA3&DOCID=298635&PageLabelPrint=1A&skin=LawtonConstitution&AW=1416932688766&AppName=2&sPublication=TLC&sScopeID=DR&sSorting=Score%2cdesc&sQuery=Marcell%20Johnson&rEntityType=&sSearchInAll=false&sDateFrom=%2530%2531%2f%2530%2531%2f%2532%2530%2530%2537&sDateTo=%2531%2531%2f%2533%2530%2f%2532%2530%2530%2538&dc:creator=&PageLabel=&dc:publisher=&ViewMode=GIF

http://www.swoknews.com/local/report-sheds-light-death-man-local-police-custody

But what is unique about Ferguson is that the resulting protests justified the anxiety that Americans have had since entire neighborhoods were shut down during the search for the Boston marathon bombing suspect (BTW, whatever happened to THAT guy?)

It confirmed to us that there is an thick, blue line separating “us” from “them,” with the “them” being law enforcement officers. The complex love/hate, need/despise relationship between citizens and police has been festering for some time, but as the populous embraces the idea that people can kill anyone who they deem to be “up to no good,” a threat or simply a “scary thug,” the disconnect has deepened.

On one hand, citizens need police to maintain order and help the wheels of justice turn. They are the people who come when your husband beats you up, again. They are the ones that gather the evidence that puts away your nephew’s murderer. They are the ones that walk into the darkest places of humanity in an effort to bring some light.

Not all police officers are terrible people.

But what we’re seeing now is officers who look more like soldiers than law enforcement– Paramilitary gear, assault rifles in hand, literally rolling fucking tanks into the streets… in Boston and now Missouri. No police force should be equipped with a tank. Period. And in Ferguson, we’ve gone one step further… the National Guard is put on standby to suppress citizens?

Don’t get me wrong, I know that a violent, unruly mob can’t exactly be talked down with listening words. I can’t even pretend I have an appropriate suggestion about how police should or shouldn’t diffuse the anger. I just know that Americans are feeling more and more trapped within their own boarders; That we feel as though the police state is worsening, and the only retort is “Well, don’t break the law.”

Breaking the law isn’t an excuse to fire 12 shots at an unarmed man. Breaking the law isn’t an excuse to shoot a man you KNEW was armed nine times in front of his own wife… on his own property… when he called to report he was the victim of a crime. “Reaching” into a pocket isn’t a reason for police to make a kill shot following a traffic stop, simply because the perpetrator was a “known thug.”

What happened to people being given a chance to be innocent until they’re proven guilty? Now, most “thugs” and “badguys” have a day in court posthumously with tangled tales of their existence woven into elaborate representations by attorneys. The social response seems to be shrugged shoulders and a crude comment about how people should know better than to raise their voice or eyebrows, hell even breathe the wrong way around police officers.

Essentially, Americans have accepted the socially-constructed notion that “some people just deserve to die because they don’t follow the rules.” Americans have internalized the concept that justice is somehow a tradeoff– police have difficult and dangerous jobs so sometimes people are going to accidentally die– and we look the other way.

Police may not actually be guilty of murdering individuals when they get trigger-happy. They are also victims of a fear-mongering, told every day that they won’t come home to their families if they don’t shoot first and ask questions later. Their jobs are, in fact, quite dangerous, and many officers have successfully disarmed, shot or detained very dangerous people. Those cases don’t seem to resonate with the public as much.

But change is obviously needed. There is a perception that the police can shoot and kill citizens with little to no reason and without consequence. An officer may be fired, yes, but there is nothing that would keep him or her from working at another jurisdiction, especially since police band together and rally to protect their own. Until there becomes some way to hold police officers responsible for making a mistake, maybe not with an indictment (criminal allegations still must have a factual basis), or law enforcement make serious efforts to show they understand and want to correct (NOT rolling tanks into the streets) the misery in Missouri will only become more venomous.

No sleep ’til Brooklyn

I’ve waited all day to climb into bed. Now that I’m here, it appears as though I’ll wait all night before I get some rest.
He said he’d call tonight from his hotel, but he didn’t. He’s got a lot on his mind. He’s likely tired like me, or perhaps talked with his daughter tonight. I just don’t know how a person can be so in love with you for weeks and weeks then just stop communicating with a flip of a switch.
It feels like he’s going to run from me again. It feels like the cycle of love and separation is repeating. However, he’s made little comments here and there about us being faithful to each other over the next year and that he wanted to be sure his smell was on my bedsheets (odd thing I really enjoy), so I don’t want to make a mountain of a mole hill. I’m just scared. About a lot of things.
And the sweet smell of heaven on earth on my pillow is simultaneously alleviating and exasterbating my misery and longing.