Maps.

I just looked at my stats. I noticed someone from South Korea has read my blog. I know someone that lives in South Korea. I really hope that’s not who’s reading my blog.

He knows me.

On the left: my Christmas present. On the right: my (super) early birthday present. Both from W. Both are things he knows I’ll not only use but that I truly appreciate. He knows me. He cares about the things that are important to me. He loves me.

And I love him.

Faithless.

In response to the Daily Prompt

In order to have faith in something (or someone) you need to believe in that thing (or person) first. It won’t work otherwise. Over the years I have come to the realization that I have lost faith in many things (and, sadly, many people). I didn’t want to. Believe me when I tell you that I liked being able to have faith in something or someone. It was a comforting thought to have. Kind of like a safety net of sorts. If something were to go wrong, that person or thing would be there to help, in however small or big a way. It was simply nice to know that someone had my back. I don’t feel that way about a lot of things these days. I haven’t for a long time now.

My faith in God was the first to go. I was raised Catholic and was a practicing Catholic until about the age of twenty. I was away at college when it happened, when I lost my faith in the Big Guy Upstairs. It wasn’t something that happened overnight either. It was a slow and gradual progression. I wasn’t happy about it but I was also kind of pissed off that it was happening. As a Catholic I was taught that if you were a good person, that God would be good to you in return. That He would “take care of you” and that, in the end, you would end up in Heaven for being such a good person. I used to really believe that. So I did my best to be one of those “good people”.

I kept being as good a person as I could be but shitty things began to happen in my life (for example, my parents were getting divorced and I had to have major surgery to remove my defective ovary) and no matter how “good” I was as a person, those shitty things kept happening. Suddenly the idea that being good meant God would be good to you began to not make sense to me. Here I was being a good daughter, sister, student and friend to the people I knew and it felt like God wasn’t paying any attention to what was going on in my life. WTF? By the time I was halfway through college I had reached the point where none of it made sense. Everything I had learned when I was in grade school felt like a lie. And it wasn’t just the things that were going on in my life that made me question it all. It was everything I was seeing around me. The older I became, the more I began to see that life was, in fact, not easy or fair. The rose-colored glasses that I had worn during most of my childhood had gotten lost somewhere along the way and I was now seeing everything as it was. Talk about a cold slap to the face.

By the time I graduated from college I was pretty much done with religion as a whole. Since then my life has not gotten any easier and the world, as I know it, has gotten a lot harder, a lot crueler. It’s difficult for me to believe that there is a God who seems to be okay with things going as they are and not doing a damn thing about it. I could pray all I want but it’s really not going to change anything because “God” has nothing to do with anything that’s of this earth. Will I be afraid if, after I die, it turns out there is a God after all? Not really. The way I see it, if He really does exist, he’ll let me pass through the Pearly Gates anyway because I’m still the good person I was from years ago. That much hasn’t changed about me. Personally, I don’t think there is a Heaven. I think that once we die everything simply goes black and that’s it. You cease to exits.

Would it be cool if He were to somehow prove me wrong? Maybe. I say maybe because then it would mean Heaven exists and the afterlife would be the great place it was described to me as a kid. I would get to be with my wonderful four-legged companion, M, again and get to sit on a cloud for all eternity. But maybe not because it would also mean that God let all the shitty things that happen in the world happen. I don’t know about you, but I don’t think I would want to believe in a God that did that.

Faith, especially in religion, is a complex belief that isn’t meant for everyone. It wasn’t meant for me. Life is complicated enough as it is without adding that into the mix. But I will say this, my faith in people has been restored a bit since meeting W. I didn’t think it would have been possible for me to meet a man that was not only kind and generous with his heart, but also willing to share it with me. W is such a man. So maybe I can believe in that, in him. I think I will.

Catharsis in a dress.

A funny thing happened yesterday. My younger brother is on this “cleaning out the basement” kick so he has my mother and I digging through boxes that have old clothes inside of them. Well, last night I went through a box that had dresses I’ve had for a very long time. So long that I had forgotten about them. It’s what happens when something’s been tucked away, out of site, isn’t it? So there I was digging through this box and when I got to the bottom of it what do I see? My high school prom dress. I had no idea my mother had kept it. Although I suppose if she had gotten rid of it, she would have told me she was going to.

I took it out of the box and held it up and wondered if it might still fit. Well, at least fit me now. Now that I was in better shape. And you know what? It did.

promdress

I was thrilled, of course, at first. And then I couldn’t stop myself from wondering if it fit me because I had been a chubby high school kid or because I was simply thinner now. Mostly I was thrilled because how many women can say they still fit in their prom dresses? But I couldn’t help but wonder. Because I wasn’t happy with the way I looked back then. I thought I was fat. I felt fat. So wearing a prom dress felt like an uncomfortable thing to do. But I did it because I wanted to have that fairy tale prom experience. Which didn’t happen, of course. No, my prom night ended in tears. Tears because it was so not how I had imaged it would  be.

So the fact that 23 years later that same dress would fit me was kind of cathartic. Because I’m certainly happier now than I was then. And I guess it was nice to see that same dress on and not feel that I looked bad in it.

Meeting.

There is a very good chance, I’d say it’s 99.9% sure, that I will be meeting W’s 8-year old daughter for the first time tomorrow. For those of you that know me from my previous blog know that in my last relationship I had trouble with my ex’s daughter. Actually, calling it trouble is putting it lightly. It was a miserable experience, really. She hated, and I mean hated me, and did everything she could to make my life difficult during the three years that I was with her father. So you can see why meeting W’s daughter has brought on some anxiety and fear with it.

I’ve told him about my previous experience. He knows pretty much the whole story and he’s reassured me that his daughter, M, is nothing like my ex’s daughter. For the sake of the relationship I hope he’s right. I don’t know if I could go through that again. And I would hate to lose him over that. It’s been so wonderful with him so far.

The plan is to go with them to the city’s aquarium and spend a few hours with them. She knows about me already. Knows that her papa has a “special friend”. She knows my name and that a plan has been made for us to meet. She seems to be very interested in meeting me and doesn’t seem to mind it either.

I don’t want to bring the past into this wonderful present I have now. I’m trying hard not to let the fear of what happened the last time take over. W has already shown me that he is nothing, nothing like my ex. He has shown me that he truly loves me and that he wants this to work. So I need to trust him enough to believe that he’s made the right decision by wanting us to meet sooner than we had originally planned.

I’ll go with them to the museum and hopefully things will go well. It’s really all I can do, isn’t it?

The L word.

Is there a “too soon” when it comes to someone telling you that they love you? And when you say it in return? It’s been well over a month now that W and I have known each other. Three weeks since things were made official. And yet it feels so much longer than that. We talk every day. We FaceTime every night (except on the nights when he’s so tired that he falls asleep before we get a chance to). We text all day long. We start with good morning and end with good night. We miss each other when we can’t be together. And not one bit of it has felt wrong. There have been no signs, not even hints, of a red flag anywhere. By no means am I saying that he is perfect and neither am I, but we are perfect for each other and that’s what’s important.

My heart is smiling for the first time in a very, very long time. Whenever I get a text message from him I can’t control the smile that comes over my face. This is how it should be. This is what it should feel like when you’re with someone that truly cares for you. This is what healthy feels like. I didn’t have it before but I have it now and I hope I never lose it.

pinky-love