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Posts Tagged ‘LGBTQ’

My Big Fat Life – Throwback Thursday (365 days later)

In Uncategorized on June 26, 2014 at 5:23 pm

A year ago today I stood in the hallway at OHSU right outside the door of the ultrasound room, and cried as I listened to a cardiologist tell me that Gabriel needed to have life saving open heart surgery. These were the same halls I walked when I was visiting Gabriel in the NICU after his birth, and the same halls I walked when I was leaving the hospital with a little boy that I was told was in perfect health with a perfect heart. Even though I had my suspicions over the years that there was something going on with Gabe, nothing prepared me for that moment and those words.

Here we are 365 days later, and I never would have guessed that life would be so much different than where I thought it was that day that I made the drive to the hospital for routine tests for the boys. In some ways the changes are very disappointing and in other ways, life is much better.

I was going to write a list of the changes that transpired over the year, but recently my sweet friend Jessica posted something on Facebook that resonated with me so much, that I wanted to share the list of things she has learned this past year (with her permission):

1. People who actually care will make a way to be there for you when you need them.

2. People have different definitions of help.

3. People have different definitions of friendship. Just because you know what kind of friend you are to someone doesn’t necessarily mean they will be that kind of friend to you.

4. Ultimately, you don’t owe anyone any explanations for your living, romantic or self decisions (unless you are hurting someone).

5. My mother will always be there despite how she feels about whatever is going on… good or bad, or indifferent.

6. You know the answers in your spirit; we seek others for confirmation.

7. If when something goes on in your life and you pick up the phone to tell someone, the first person you think/want to tell is and should be your best friend or partner (if this isn’t the same person) . If you find yourself telling someone something and they aren’t the first person you thought to share your thoughts or happenings with, reconsider who you’re sharing with. Everyone isn’t meant to know everything.

8. If you are in a bind and you need help, the first person you know who will come through when you call is your family.

9. After all is said and done, whoever is left is your true friend. I fight very hard for my friendships/relationships. Fight for people who will actually fight for you and don’t be surprised when you find out people you thought were going to won’t. I’m learning who actually fits into that “friend” category. And although it sucks, it is definitely an eye opener.

10. MOST IMPORTANT LESSON OF ALL: You can’t expect anything from anyone. So… make your own life filled with happiness and joy the best way you can. You will meet amazing people along the way; know when to hold on and when to let go.

While I can’t really relate to #5 and I am not really into fighting to keep relationships intact this past year (I have had to keep my battles soft), this list really hit home with me. Especially #2 and #3. Besides these lessons, I have also learned that hope can be an enemy if not used with caution and that hugs (for someone who is not normally affectionate with strangers) are essential.

A year ago I never would have thought that some people who were in my life then, would not be a part of it now. Some of those relationships were redefined, and I am grateful for the preservation of those connections. I do miss friendships that fell by the wayside, but I am very thankful for the new friendships I made this year, with people I wouldn’t have met otherwise. I have met other heart parents along the way, and also Wendy who is a heart patient herself (she is a kindered spirit in the realm of parenting, and she makes me laugh on a consistent basis). These people have made me feel as though I can lose my shit in a place that is understood, even if our experiences are all different. I am especially grateful for a friendship that came from the most unexpected place with perfectly imperfect timing, how it’s evolved, and how now Omar has come to be amongst the most cherished people in my life.

Life hasn’t carried me where I thought it would. It certainly has changed in the last 365 days. In some ways the changes have been really disappointing, and in some ways life is so much better.  The best thing of all is that as I write this, Gabriel is playing a video game with his brother and I can hear the debate about the game take place. A year ago I was terrified that might not be the case.

Still not sure where the next year will lead us; I’m not even sure what tomorrow has in store (other than a soccer lesson). I do know that I am grateful for each and every one of you who have read my words, written me letters of encouragement, loved me despite my often bouts of frustration with this journey, and given me space when I needed it with the understanding that you would always be there when I was ready to talk. Your loving and patient friendship has meant a lot to me.

My wish for the next 365 days is for healing, love, and victories. I wish that for all of us.

 

(I snapped this photo of Gabriel on June 26th 2013, while he was being prepped to have the echo that would prove to be both life saving and life changing)

Gabriel June 26 2013_copy

 

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My Big Fat Life – Waves

In Uncategorized on December 5, 2013 at 9:53 pm

When I was pregnant with Isaac and Gabriel, I went through a very dark place in time. It was really difficult. I carried death and life with me every single moment. I couldn’t walk away from it, I couldn’t deny it. Every time I looked down, or in a mirror, there it was. I was pregnant with a son who would not live, and a child who would work so hard just to live.

The time I went through was one of the worst times of my life. It took me a lot to make it through that time. I yelled at God, I screamed at people I loved and cared about, and I often struggled with analyzing every single thing I did that could have caused the pregnancy to turn out like it did. Every medication, every food, every breath. It just seemed I couldn’t get out of trying to figure out what I could have done differently. The truth is, there is nothing. I understand that now, but try telling that to myself 13 years ago, was a whole other story.

When I was assured more than once, that Gabriels heart was okay after her returned from the NICU, it took me time to chill the heck out. I watched him breathe, a lot. Every little sniffle was a red alert to me, and I just wanted to be on high alert. It took time for me to get out of that crisis mode. Years even.

When this past June it was discovered that in fact he did have a heart defect since birth, every single fear that lay in hibernation, emerged and with a roar. When I stood out in the hallway and the very doctor that told me so many times before my son was okay, was now telling me that they found something.. my whole world changed. I changed. Not who I am as a person, but how I see things. Things that I used to get really upset over, are now no longer the biggest things for me to stress about anymore. Yet some things I never considered I really thought about, I think about a lot more. Like, if today was the last day I was to live, would I be happy with where my life is? Would I regret something? Would I have wished I didn’t compromise the things I really believe in, just to make others happy?

I also find that I often get really annoyed with some people easier. In me, I know that all people go through things that are relative to them, and while it might seem trivial to me, to them it is a big deal. It’s happening in their life. Yet, sometimes I cringe when I hear people complain about the cold their child has, or they lost a whole hour of sleep because their spouse refused to get up to help. I look around me and I think of the times I wished I had someone in the house to help, or how a cold would be such a blessing in comparison to what my child is struggling with. There are days I don’t even get to change from my pajamas before 5pm, let alone  have a moment to myself to even think about the last time I sat down to eat.

I am also starting to understand why they say some marriages and relationships don’t survive the struggles people face when a child becomes ill. It’s taken a toll on friendships and relationships in my life. Just when I think I can catch my breath, I spend an hour in the doctors office, or the ER, or with a specialist, and I am right back in crisis mode all over again. I ride this constant wave. Some days I just want to turn my phone off, and ignore everyone so I can catch my breath. Some days I just feel incapable of giving to others outside of the boys. That includes myself.

I am not sure when I will finally be able to sleep a full night without waking up to look at Gabriel to make sure he is still breathing, again. I am not sure when I will be able to wear mascara again to a doctors appointment, or when this wave will crest and then crash. I have no idea. I have no idea about anything anymore. I do know that I am beyond thankful for my children, I am beyond thankful for the people who love me. I also know that I am working through so much and I need understanding from those around me as I rise and fall over and over again. I need to be selfish right now. If that is even what it is called. Is it selfish to want to just not think for a day? I don’t know. If it is, I need it. I am not ignorant to the things relationships in our lives to survive. But I also know life brings highs and lows and seasons are not always equal. What we put out isn’t always what we are going to get in return, because life in all of it’s idealistic simplicity, just doesn’t work that way. Sometimes we need to be the stronger one for the other. Sometimes we need to be the cheerleaders. Life is not this perfect balance. I wish it was, but for all the self motivational memes on Facebook of idealistic quotes, it just isn’t. It’s impossible to explain to those around me who have never had a child with an illness. But even then, pain is all relative to our life, right?

In the medium, I would like to say that if you are reading this and you have a little one at home with a cold that has kept you awake all night, know that there are some parents out there tonight who would give anything to be in your place with their own child. If the worst thing that happened to you today is that someone cut you off in traffic and you forgot to get peanut butter at the store, be thankful. If you know someone going through a tough time, be there … unconditionally. For all the things you are feeling, you have no idea what it is like to be where they are. They might appreciate that smile on your face more than you realize, even if they look back at you with tears in their eyes.

My Big Fat Life – Here We Go Again

In Uncategorized on December 1, 2013 at 11:02 am

One of the few things people know about me, is that I have to listen to R&B when I write. I have never been able to figure it out, but as I sit here I have Toni Braxton blaring into my ears. I have to say she makes me feel I have my groove this morning, and I can tackle just about anything. Perhaps that is the connection.

Gabriel is sick again.

 

He was off the steroids and seemed to do really well for a couple of weeks, and then he started getting sick again. I knew the signs, and as soon as I saw them I took him back to the cardiologist. Long story short, he was dismissive and told me that Gabriel probably just had muscle cramps. I had seen this four times already in Gabriel. He starts to hurt, and within 3 days he starts to run a fever. We saw the doctor on the third day in, and later that evening the fevers started. Finally his pediatrician ordered blood work and sure enough his lab results showed he had high numbers indicating inflammation. I would not give up taking him in to be seen until someone listened to me. I find it really annoying when you are a parent, and you are dismissed when it comes to your children. We are the parents, we know out children. I also know Gabriel never felt like this until he had the surgery. I have no idea why, but every time he starts to get sick now, he gets this pain in his right shoulder blade. Before you know it, it moves around and the fevers start. Soo when the cardiologist told me that it was just muscle cramping (and I didn’t know what I was talking about) that just made me push that much harder. In defense of Gabriels cardiologist, it wasn’t his typical doctor. He was on holiday, and so this was a doctor that was filling in. 

The pediatrician put Gabriel back on a high does of steroids, and by the next day my son was up and dancing around in the kitchen. It was nice to see him feeling better. When his cardiologist came back from holiday, we went in to see him and talk about a game plan here. Gabriel can’t live on steroids the rest of his life, and so I wanted some answers. He decided that adding the care of a rheummetoligist might help, since they deal with inflammation of the heart sac, which is where everyone seems to think this is where the inflammation is taking place.

We were so late for our appointment. I was trying to get out the door and the key broke off in the lock on the way out the door. Then finally on the road we were stuck in traffic 4 lanes wide, and backed up for over an hour. By the time we got there, we were already so late. Before we left, the dog sneezed on my tea. It was probably a dog curse.

The doctor was really nice in a quirky sorta way. I saw the potential for the God complex that I have over the years when working with specialists, but he seemed genuinely interested in wanting to help as much as he could. It wasn’t so reassuring when he told me that he had only seen one other child post op who presented with heart inflammation, and that child responded first treatment. We are Gabriels 4th. He told me that all the people he sees with heart sac inflammation are not post op, so not related to a surgical procedure, and some of those people have to have the sac removed from their heart in order to make it stop. I already knew that was a resolution for some of the cases, but I have been really keeping that to myself. I still don’t like speaking that out loud, because I refuse to even go there in my mind yet.

So we left with yet another round of extensive steroid treatment. On Friday I spoke with the cardiologist again and he told me that Gabriel is stubborn in healing, and he is hoping that another treatment, with a very slow taper, will give more time for his heart to heal from the surgery and hopefully by the time he is off of it, he will be just fine. He said healing in total really takes up to 6 months. I asked him about what the other doctor said, and I talked about my concerns that maybe the inflammation could be from somewhere else in his body, related to the surgery. I asked him at what point we could have a cat scan and heck things out. He told me that if Gabriel doesn’t respond to treatment this time, that he will do a cat scan. While right now we have no answers, and I am riding this wave of emotional of worry, I feel good that we have a plan. The cardiologist also assured me that they will now listen to me next time, and when I come in knowing my son is ill, they will be sure to not be so quick to dismiss it. This is a good thing, because watching my son in pain until they decide to take action, is just wrenching.

Gabriel is starting to feel weary from the constant ups and downs of feeling like shit. He told me the other day that he feels like he missed out on his whole summer and having fun. I feel awful for him, because I know he is right, he has. He wants to go have fun so badly, all of the boys do. I try to think of things we can do, but I also have to be careful not to take Gabriel into some major crowded areas where everyone and their dog are coughing. I really feel for the kid. He needs to have some serious fun. I’ve got to some up with ideas.

In other news, I filed a complaint with the Department of Education in regards to removing my other sons aide from his IEP. You would think this IEP team has better things to do, than try and bully a Mom who has other things going on, but I am starting to feel like they are taking advantage of fact that I have my head wrapped around other things at the time. Which, I must admit, just pisses me off more. When I am stressed out, or I am faced with something, I tend to fight that much harder to push through it all. Defeat is not in my vocabulary. If things don’t work the way I believe, then I simply feel that maybe that is divine intervention leading me another way for whatever reason, but I do not back down to advocating for those I love and doing what I believe is right.

That all being said, I must also confess I would seriously love a hug right now. Less telling me how strong I am, and more hugs are absolutely in order. I could go on some wave of how difficult this can be at times, but I am pretty sure you have figured that out already.

Someday I will wear mascara again. I believe this.

 

 

My big Fat Lesbian Life – This Is What It Is About

In Uncategorized on March 12, 2013 at 2:43 pm

Looking back at some of the things I have written, I am almost amazed at just how much shit I put myself through. A lot of it could have been avoided or ended way sooner if I had just not engaged myself. Yet at the same time, it has chronicled a journey I have been on. Healing from grief, realizations about myself as a woman and life. If you’ve ever played video games, or watched someone, think of it as standing in a room. You need to find a clue or whatever, to move to the next level. You have opened ever single door and window until  you click on the bookshelf and suddenly a hidden door reveals itself. On the other side all of these really cool things are just there. You can’t imagine how you even managed to make it this far in the game without knowing about the things you are about to pick up and experience. Given it is a video game example, but it’s exactly like that.

That’s worth waiting for.

My Big Fat lesbian Life – Valerie Harper, Cancer & My Son Is Coming Home Today.

In Uncategorized on March 7, 2013 at 2:50 pm

Today is March 7th 2013 and today is the day that my son will be home. It’s been a little over two years, a cancer diagnosis, 5 surgeries and heaps of tears since I have laid my eyes on that kid last.

He spent the week competing in the Warriors Games Trials in California. Last night, the Marines took the gold in wheelchair basketball. I am so proud of him being a part of something that can show him that life can move on, even if it’s not the original direction in which he thought he would be going.

Today I read about the sad news of Valerie Harper, and her diagnosis. It seems so sad to me that cancer has to be such a part of our lives. If we don’t know someone who has it, we certainly have heard of those impacted by it. It touches too much. It pisses me off. As I read the news, I happened upon her People Magazine article in which she says “Don’t miss your life”. I read that and thought about all of the things I do in a day that I whine about, and yet have to do (like laundry and dishes). If my sons cancer has taught me anything, it is to appreciate that I am even alive to do the laundry and dishes. Yet I seem to be so exhausted by the end of the day and I feel only productive, if nothing else. I sometimes wonder if I am thankful enough, or if I am just so busy thinking I have to do everything, that I am afraid to leave the dishes in the sink and let the unfolded laundry go so I can just walk out the door and enjoy the sound of birds or visit a place I have wanted to experience. I sometimes wonder I am so thankful to be alive, that I am so busy doing everything I think I need to do, that I am forgetting to enjoy the things I can do. I stand in reflection of the things I need to adjust to keep moving forward with the most vibrant and productive self I can be. I need to not only learn to let my life me a productive one, I need to let it be a celebrating one. This life is such a gift.

My heart goes out to Valerie Harper and her family. I know they have a journey ahead of them, that isn’t easy. It’s full of too many lessons in a short amount of time. I am sure I am amongst many who were touched when we read of her diagnosis. I grew up watching her show, and as an adult I have watched the reruns. What I didn’t understand as a child, I certainly understood more as I grew. I think above an appreciation of her work, I will carry with me the words that I needed to read this morning. They spoke to me. As a single Mom with adult children, and children still at home (3 of which have disabilities), I really did need to read those words this morning. Not just for myself, but to teach my children.  I pray her family has the strength and peace they need to face the goodbye and embrace the legacy she leaves. As for myself, In a few short hours I will finally embrace my son and say hello. It seems so weird how life can bring such opposite acts, that can produce the same lessons.

If you follow me on Facebook (My Big Fat Lesbian Divorce), I will be posting photos tomorrow. Until then, be safe and happy and above all else…. live, and don’t miss it.

My Big Fat Lesbian Life – Warm Blankets & Pizza

In Uncategorized on February 24, 2013 at 5:51 pm

My life is so nice right now. It’s like a big warm blanket on a cold morning. I don’t want to emerge from it, even to pee. Well, maybe to pee. But I’d run really fast to the bathroom, so I could quickly jump under the warmth of my big ol’ blanket.

My son had another biopsy to remove a growth under his tongue, of all places. I didn’t want to say anything about it, until we heard the results this time. The up and downs. the stress and the worry, is sometimes more than I feel I can handle. I am happy I have God to help me through it all. My relationship with Him is a lot like that big warm blanket. Emerging to deal with my day to day needs, can be a cold reality at times, but I know I have the warmth of Him when I really don’t feel like I can carry the worry I have over any of my children. Which, I do a lot of. The biopsy came back negative, and it turns out it was another cyst. I am so happy for that kid. I am so happy for my heart. I am just so happy, that to add a cake to the whole mix he is coming home the first week of March, for a visit. This will be the first time I have seen him since his diagnosis, and 5 surgeries later. He is sending me his schedule, so I know it is real this time. The Marines aren’t keeping him for an appointment, he has specific leave off and there is nothing they can do about it. My son is actually going to be here for a visit. I am so happy.

So the summary for my recent week is: My son had his second clean pathology report, my son is coming home in just a bit, and I have an amazing girlfriend.

There shall be cake, there shall be joy and there shall definitely be pizza.

 

My Big Fat Lesbian Life- My First Time

In Uncategorized on February 4, 2013 at 11:55 pm

Last time I wrote I had spoken of Bea, who I deleted from my Facebook. I have to admit I was surprised to see a note from her in my inbox asking me why I had. I didn’t think she would even notice to be honest. She did. I struggled with an answer for a bit, and had to process. Because I was still uncertain as to why in some aspects. But I wanted to be honest with her this time. She is the woman I just stopped contact with when I moved up here to Portland, because I found it easier.. safer.. to just stop talking to her, than have to be vulnerable and share with her the truths that I had been carrying around. So I responded. I am working towards being open with people, even when I don’t like being vulnerable. I guess I have believed if I kept it to myself, then it’s safe tucked somewhere away. There it can sit and that information can’t be seen as a weakness in my shield or expose some part of me that might show how vulnerable I can really be.

When I found myself in a place with her 20 something years after high school, she was  more than just a sexual experience with someone. She was by all accounts, my first. There was a lot of meaning behind what I shared with her. It wasn’t just a sexual thing that happened, though I knew it couldn’t be more. She was literally just out of a relationship with someone and both of us were in places that weren’t really the best foundation for the start of something new. I knew that, but my heart wasn’t listening to my head at the time.

When things came to a halt between us, I walked away feeling hurt and honestly I felt like maybe I was just a fling that didn’t mean much even though in reality I knew that’s all it would be for me. All this time I held the idea that what we shared, and what I had shared (unbeknownst to her) was nothing more than just sex. It hurt every time I saw her post something on her page, and for the longest time I guess I couldn’t really understand why. But when I sat down to write her back, the words just spilled out and there it was before me. There was no longer denying it, or even escaping it. For what it was, I knew I had to be honest with her and tell her everything.

I didn’t know how she would respond to my left field confessions, and I didn’t even know if she would respond at all. But there they were, and there was no taking the words back to fill in the cracks I was exposing in my shield. While writing I also realized part of why I never shared with her, was because I didn’t want to give that power to someone else. To know that they were given something that could be used against me in a way to hurt me, or have some sort of power. Yet, she wrote me back the most thoughtful, caring letter. It was more than I expected, and it was mindful and considerate. Tears that I didn’t realize I had for her flowed without restraint. She told me that I wasn’t just sex to her at the time, and shared some things that explained the space she was in at the time. It made sense to me, and I understood with consideration. This hurt I felt was healing, and I was feeling a closure that I couldn’t create for myself. I felt like that maybe a door was opening for me to be able to reach out to her in time, and a friendship.. a real friendship.. could develop. Bea had no clue that she was more than my first big girl crush in high school, she was also a first in many other ways and was becoming a first for me again in some way. I don’t regret that I shared those firsts with her, I only regret I wasn’t open with her to begin with. Who knows how things would have been had I been able to be more open with her, I am not sure I even want to analyze the reasons why. I just know that it felt good to show a crack in my shield and while I know not every response will be as generous or as caring when I do, it still felt nice to jump out there and be openly honest with myself.

They say you never really forget your first, but I would like to actually meet her.

My Big Fat Lesbian Life – Come here, Go Away, Go Away.

In dating, Divorce, family, gay, Lesbian, lgbt, Love, single, Uncategorized, women on January 27, 2013 at 5:20 pm

In the spirit of my new change, I have been backing up my way of thinking with action.

This week, I blocked the phone calls and text messages of someone who would literally stress me out everytime she sent me a text. I won’t go into all the reasons why she stresses me out, only to say that she seems to be in a place I don’t want to be. The negative energy, the denial.. In the past, I would have been accepting. Not anymore.

I started going to Al-Anon. Al-Anon is for the family and freinds of alochoholics. While I have dealt with a lot of the things that I expereinced at the hands of my Mothers addiction, I still have that caretaking mentality. It is what has kept me in bad relationships, making excuses for the others behavior. In the process none of my boudaries were respected. Actually, I am not sure I even had any. But I have them now, and I need to repect them. I need to hold them close and true. If someone chooses not to respect those boundaries, at least I will.

I deleted someone I had an involvement with at one time, from my Facebook page, It was Bea.. the one I wrote about, who I was totally into in High School. I have no idea why, but seeing her page and topics seemed to upset me in some weird way. So, after some thought, I decided to let whatever it was, be what it is.

I feel good about these changes. Of course I never want to hurt anyone. I find that a difficult thing to face. I also know I am tired of hurting myself, while choosing to protect the feelings of others. It’s time to take those steps and finally let my actions show that I care about myself and that I respect the boundaries I have set out for myself.

It feels good to finally liberate myself, from myself.

My Big Fat Lesbian Life – Dating After Divorce 

In Blog, blogging, Break-up, Choose Joy, Christmas, dating, Divorce, equality, Facebook, Foolish Hearts, gay marriage, God, homosexuality, Lesbian, Lesbian Relationships, LGBTQ, Love, Marriage, minivan, Oregon, Portland, Rain, relationships, respect, sex, single, women, Writing on December 3, 2012 at 3:17 am

Ever live in one of those places that has one of those crummy water settings in the shower? It’s like you barely touch it, and it goes from freezing cold to scalding hot. You are standing there naked, usually with shampoo in your hair, and trying to dodge the extreme streams of water shooting at you.
My dating life has been pretty much the same way.

The dangers of dating, especially when you write a blog, is that you can’t really talk about some of the things going on in your mind, because the chances are they will read it. However, I am not dating any of these people any longer, and I really need to talk about it. One, to talk about how things have moved on in my life, and also because I learned a lot from the past few years. It would be ridiculous to try and say that some of these experiences haven’t impacted change in my life one way or another. In fact, the blog “Bullshit” was an epiphany I had while dating someone, and is what gave me the ability to call her up and drop her like I probably should have done after the first date.

There is one person who I encountered before my ex wife, and I need to share about her. I know this is about how my life has moved on since my ex, but she has woven herself in my heart and she played an important role. Her name was Bea (not her real name). It wasn’t a relationship, in fact she was just ending a 2 year relationship when I reconnected with her. I am not sure what it was, or how she defined it. I do know that I loved her. Back in mid 80s in high school I had a crush on her. She couldn’t come near me without my palms sweating, and I could never really look at her without feeling that rush of blood going to my face. I don’t think I spoke a full sentence to her being able to make eye contact with her. She was like a dream. Her smile, the way she carried herself, her laugh… it all penetrated my very being. I wanted to be close to her, but I lacked confidence. Fast forward to 2009 and I had found her on Facebook. I dropped her a line and we reconnected. When I laid eyes on her all those years later, it was like being in high school all over again. Exactly like high school all over again… I still lacked composure when she was near. I still remember our first kiss. It was everything I had thought it would be, soft and wonderful. Things didn’t turn out so well (I really don’t want to bring up all the details that took me so long to grow through) but I don’t think she ever knew to the extent of how much my heart broke after things turned messy, and I have never told her. I can state the reasons why it was a mess, I was in such a different place then, but I could never bring myself to tell her just how much I had loved her, how much she meant to me, and how I just wanted to make her smile. Instead, I just cut her out of my life. It was the easier, less painful road for me to take at the time. I cried for months, and I wore my friends ears out over that. I must have picked up the phone to call her what seemed like a million times just to hear her voice, but instead I’d just sit and stare at her number on my screen and eventually just put my phone in my pocket. All the texts I’d type out, then just erase. I can’t play the “If I could only go back in time” game in my mind, so I don’t. But hindsight is 20/20 and I do wish I had been in a much better place in my life during that time.

There was one more woman I met before I met my ex. There was an interest there, but we never dated. I am eternally thankful for her friendship. She needs a mention here, because she is a truly beautiful person. I’ll call her Songbird.

Then there was my ex. Since the first whole year of this blog has been about her, I think you get the picture. What. A. Mistake.

Then there was the first person I dated after my ex. I’ll call her Thunder. She made me feel attractive again. After a year and a half living with the Siberian Queen of Winter, it was nice to feel attractive, desired and even capable. Thunder and I were compatible in some ways, and in others.. not so much. She was a spitfire, she still is. There were times she would say things that would just cause me to stop in my tracks. I felt she lacked a filter at times. and at times it was overwhelming. But she also could make me laugh until I had tears in my eyes. And the sex….. I’ll be honest, it was the most functional thing we had going for us some of the time. She was present, and it was nice to feel like I was in bed with someone. If you’ve ever been in a bad relationship, you know what I am talking about. That feeling of loneliness that comes with sharing the same bed with someone who just isn’t emotionally there. It is one of the worst feelings of loneliness I have ever experienced. I broke it off with Thunder, and it took time for us to restore a friendship, but she will always be an important part of my journey.

After Thunder, I spent some time just dating. I met some nice people, and some really messy people. One lady comes to mind, and to this day still makes me cringe when I think about it. I spent two hours seated across from this woman as she told me every single sexual encounter she had ever had in all of her life, including the man she slept with 3 months prior “just to make sure” she was gay. She ended her long tale with the closing sentence of “I’m lucky I never caught anything.” I was horrified. She later went on the blow my texts up with proclamations of how she wanted to be a part of my world. Uh…. no.

There was Beaverton. OK so that is not her name, but it is where I would see her for lunch. It wasn’t a relationship, but we dated. I really liked her a lot. She was pretty hot and cold though, just like that shower I was talking about. One minute she seemed really into it, and the next.. I had no idea. I was often confused as to what was going through her mind, and so I couldn’t really emotionally move anywhere with it. I was pretty disappointed, because I really liked her. But I couldn’t take the hot & cold mess. I never knew from one to the next if I sent her a text, that she would freak out and think I was getting serious, or if I didn’t text her and she would think I didn’t care. Since I would go for a few days in between hearing from her, I just never knew if she was coming or going. I ended up writing her a note and just ending it. I still smile when I think of her, because despite everything, she made some really sweet memories for me.

Then I met someone through a mutual friend. I’ll call her Cave. The reason I will call her cave, is because she really should have just moved to one. She was in the middle of a divorce from her wife.. dating mistake number 1. Mistake number 2 was even going on a second date with her. At first she seemed kind, and compassionate. But as time moved on, I realized that there was this depressive darkness that just seemed oppressing, all around her. It slowly started to creep into my own life, and even my friends were asking me where my joy had gone. I smiled less, I laughed less, and I seemed tense a lot of the time. I was tired a lot, and seemed to drag my feet. It happened almost without me knowing. One day I was happy… me. Then a few months down the road, and I am just going through the routines of the day. She was toxic to me. One day she would be so kind and so gentle. The next, she wouldn’t answer the phone or texts because she needed space. She did this with her friends as well. She would just shutdown. It often left me wondering if I did something wrong, and if I asked she would tell me “no’ but would proceed to talk to me as though I had. She was abrasive, and yet would expect me to remain gentle despite her tone or words. Then she would accuse me of not being “connected” or “feeling” her. It was like being caught in the spiral of water heading down a drain. There is so much a person can endure, and I honestly just couldn’t take it anymore. The whole experience was like walking in the dark with no clue where the light switch was.

So then I met the last person I dated. She seemed to be the opposite of Cave, and that was my initial attraction. She was funny, moved around through the day, respected her faith, and I was drawn to what I thought was light. What I thought was light, turned out to be the first layer of many that were the onion of dysfunction. I’ll call her Onion. Onion and I only dated a few months before I made the call and broke it off with her. I let her feel it was a mutual decision after presenting to her the reasons why we shouldn’t date, but the truth is I was not going to date her again whether she agreed or not. We only dated a couple of weeks before she flew back to see her parents for a wedding. It would be another month before I spent any real time with her after that. The most I saw her was to pick her up from PDX after her returning flight, and took her home the next morning. But not before Onion had carelessly brought poison ivy into my home. She had contracted it while back home, and I begged her to please be considerate in how she cleaned it off before coming to my home. I have to admit I was really taken back when she sat on my couch crying because she was having separation anxiety from her parents (her explanation) after the flight. Little did I know at that time, that I needed to be as persistent with her as I would have to be with a teenager, because she ended up tracking poison ivy it into my home, and I ended up getting it on my leg. I didn’t want to see her for two weeks after that. Her nonchalant attitude about it, was even worse. It was the first red flag of lack of respect of space, and sadly wasn’t the last. The vision that stayed with me thought, was when I walked out to my kitchen and caught her in my cupboards, eating chips out of a bag. That might not seem like a big deal to most, but I was raised with respect of other peoples space and homes. I would never dream of just walking in, tossing open a cupboard and start eating your flipping chips. Yet, I found myself seeing her as teenager trapped in the body of a woman from that moment on. Every connection with her just seemed unbalanced with me, and I even started to wonder if she really just needed to pack her stuff up, and move into her parents basement. Maybe that is a harsh thing to say, but she was very dependent on them in ways a woman in her 40s really shouldn’t be. It felt so good to just end that disaster.

During the last dating escapade, is when I was talking with my pal Nancy and came to the realization that I have a high tolerance for bullsh*& from people. I could never figure out why I seemed to give things more of a chance than it really deserved. I would meet broken people, and allow broken behavior. I wanted something functional and happy, but it just never happened. I would enter into something with the hopes that it would be good, but the first shot of dysfunction and I would just shrug my shoulders and say “OK”.. Of course I knew it was dysfunction, but I never really understood to the levels of dysfunctional it was. My childhood had made desensitized me in a way, and made me just accept it as something that could be dealt with, because I had the survival skills to deal with it. But once I realized that it’s really not OK on any level, and I don’t have to deal with it, that was it. My bullsh*& tolerance is really much more smaller now. In fact, I really don’t care to ever deal with it. I know relationships go through things and seasons. I get that. In dating though? No.. I am so done with putting myself though the bs.

So what do I want?

Gentleness. Kindness. Compassionate. Honest. Loyal. Patient. Knows how to smile. Has interests outside of mine. Willing to share interests with each other. Soft spoken, but not passive. Has faith. Has hope.

The past 4 years has taught me more about what it is I am wanting in a relationship, and what I am unwilling to put up with from another person. I’ve made mistakes along the way, and I am not claiming to be without blame in any of the above mentioned situations. I am sure they have their side of how things went, but this is from my perspective. I do know the last two experiences especially were my breaking point, and my teaching moments. Perhaps I should thank them in some odd way, for providing me some growth moments.

Compromise and meeting someone where they are, is one thing in a partnership. But in a dating relationship, you really should be having fun as you get to know each other. It doesn’t have to be this intense situation where you are finding yourself make soft spaces to fall for the other person, merely to avoid a confrontation or because you are afraid to say ‘this is what I want’ and you aren’t willing to settle. It’s not like I am saying “Gee, I can’t date you because you drive a Honda and I only date those who drive Toyota.” No.. This is my future, my happiness, my choice for a life partner. I want to be happy. I want to be happy with someone else. I want to share my space with someone I can make laugh, smile, feel love and appreciated. I would like that in return.

The past 4 years I have had my heart broken, I have felt restored, I have had tears, I have had smiles.. but now is the time I can allow myself to say what it is I want from another person, and not feel like I’m being too selective. Is it really being too selective to say “Hey, I’d like you to be healthy too, because I’m ready for a mature and balanced relationship.”? No.. But we tell ourselves way too often that if we are somehow standing on that ground that we are just not compromising. When in reality we are compromising our own standards for what we would like to share with another person.

That is just one crummy shower to take for the next 50 years with someone else.

My Big Fat Lesbian Life – Short

In Uncategorized on September 23, 2012 at 9:54 am

My son is back state side!

FINALLY!

He is currently undergoing the medical discharge process, and that takes awhile (I don’t fully understand it) but he’s that much closer to being home for good. But…

I’ll get to see him before his discharge because he’s coming home for Christmas!!!

Yay!