"Love My Way, It's a New Road"

Archive for the ‘relationships’ Category

Re-framing the Holidays

If you have read my blog over the years, you will know that since my separation and divorce six years ago, the holidays have been a bit fraught for me.  Geez, it’s hard to believe that my divorce was six years ago.  Wow, that’s a post for my Emancipation Day in April!

Anyway, back to the holidays.  Since I don’t have a strong family connection with my dad or my brother (I haven’t spoken to that Sack of Shit for years), the only family I am close to are my kids.  I don’t want to lean on them for every single holiday, so I need to re-frame what the holidays mean to me.

When my kids were growing up, the holidays were always about family.  My then-husband, the kids, the in-laws and extended family.  My Ex is one of 4 kids in a close-knit family.  We all lived close to one another for years.  The in-laws and extended family were close by also.  My kids grew up in a nurturing environment — just as I always wanted.

Once I divorced my husband, those family members are gone.  They included me very sporadically and reluctantly on a few occasions, but I knew not to depend upon them.  I realize that I have not released my married life view of the holidays being about family.  I need to do that.

I want to re-frame the holidays.  It is time because I will continue to be petulant about them until I can let go of my old ways.  Here is how I want to think about the holidays going forward:

Thanksgiving is a time to be grateful and reflective of all that I have.  As long as it involves turkey, I am fine.  It does not matter who or where I spend it (provided that there is turkey and pie). I have many things and people to be thankful for, so I will take the time to do so (with some stuffing and sweet potato casserole, please).  I want to channel peace, reflection and gratitude on Thanksgiving. Leftovers would be a bonus.

Christmas is going to be a time of pleasure and relaxation.  This year it will be spent with family, so I have to add in love and adventure since I will be visiting them.  Christmas is no longer tied to gifts.  I am not exchanging gifts with any of my loved ones this year.  That’s a first.  I am, however, sending my daughter a box of heirloom Christmas ornaments for her to use and keep. She is thrilled and excited to have them on her tree for this holiday. I am saving some for my son as well.

Christmas will be about being spiritual and appreciating the positivity in all of us. I love Christmas carols, the decorations, so I want to make sure I enjoy that.  It will also be about preparing for new beginnings which brings us to New Year’s.

New Year’s is all the cliches of new beginnings.  Out with the old and in with the new.  It’s the classic reset button.  New Year’s is about forgiving myself for past failed attempts and having the courage and optimism to start again.

It is quite easy to type these bold words and declaration of re-framing.  Now let’s see if I can truly take them to heart.  Can I stop my old, tired thinking and create a new reality of the holidays for myself?  I like to think “yes”.  I need to think about how I can create a small vision board that reminds me of these new holiday perceptions.

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Photo by Osman Rana on Unsplash

 

Cranking up the Social Life

Making friends as an adult seems to get harder as the years go by. I have written about this before. Anyway, this week I made concerted efforts. I went to a Meetup group of lovely professional women and followed up with those I met. I invited one new Meetup person, plus four ladies from work to join me at a free concert. No takers, so I went by myself because I’ll be damned if I will sit at home.

The weekend ended up pleasantly busy. I had shopping to do, an apartment to be cleaned, food prep to be done. Plus I enjoyed two lovely morning walks. One involved a Farmers Market. I was definitely busy.

I think what caused some melancholy is when I went through my phone contacts to dig out addresses to send “change of address” cards. There was so much crap. The vast majority where business-related from my former life, acquaintances from the married life and very little substance. I only have a dozen or so family and friends that merit a card.

I have told myself to be patient. Making friends is much like dating. I have to get myself out there with the right groups of people. I can’t expect immediate results. I appear to be one of the older residents at my apartment complex. I’m actually fine with that. I just have to continue to do activities I enjoy and friends will follow….I think. I am lucky because I am fine with flying solo at most activities, so I won’t sit at home if I don’t want to. I am not asking for much – just 2-3 new friends. Wish me luck!

What Do You Call It When…?

What can we call my relationship with the Hunter?  We are considering ourselves still a monogamous couple albeit living separately.  The sex has been great.  Sleeping alone and having our own space is also great.  We talk and text several times a day.

He was the first person I called when I had a spider crawling across my car’s touchscreen as I headed down a rush hour highway last week.  I killed that arachnid with my cute umbrella after trying my Yeti full of coffee.  The Yeti just wasn’t the right weapon.

I am the first person he calls when he’s happy, frustrated, etc.  He sends me a good morning text, usually calls during my commute and sends a good night text as well.  The man is lovingly attentive, I must say.

Are you waiting for a “but…”?  Nope, I don’t have one.  I am just going with the flow.  I am not trying to define this or create rules or anything else.  I am just in the moment.

We have plans to spend Thanksgiving with some of his family.  I will spend Christmas with Taz and my son while he takes off on a road trip with the Kracken.  We have been seeing each other 2-3 times a week.  Like I said above, the sex is great.  I may have stumbled onto the right combination for us.  Time will tell.

 

Romping

The Hunter invited me for a sleepover on Friday.  It made sense because I had a dentist appointment close to him and he lives close to the old place.  We could have a slumber party and then get up early to tackle the final clean out.  I was good with the plans until Friday morning and then I wasn’t.  I was so tired.  The prospect of cozying up on the floor of his place on a nest of sleeping bags wasn’t alluring.  I’m too old for that shit.

I called and backed out.  He texted me about an hour later and volunteered to some up to see me.  Now we are talking.  I got a gourmet pizza and he came over for pizza and romping.  Then he went home because he had not fed the Kracken and he likes sleeping in his own bed these days.

He called me when he got home and said he had been thinking on the ride home.  He asked if I was happy with the situation of us living apart but still seeing each other.  I wasn’t sure what to say, so I turned the tables and asked him.  He loves it.  I laughed and said I did also.  He loves sleeping alone (me too) and having his own space (me too).

When we see each other, it’s a short amount of time full of active listening and affection.  We talk every day at least twice a day plus some texting.  How long will this last?  I have no idea.  Is it an ideal relationship?  For now.  Who knows?

What I do know is that there is no longer any tension between us.  I am no longer responsible for him financially or otherwise.  We do our own thing and try to see each other twice a week or so.  The sex is great, we cuddle and then he leaves.  I have to say, having the entire bed to myself is lovely.

He just called me to see how I was doing.  We both had a lot of crap to unload from our respective vehicles.  I had about 5=6 trips plus I went grocery shopping because I am a glutton for punishment. He was laughing at me because although I have just finished getting rid of a ton of crap, here I am getting a few more things.  What’s on the list?  A used KitchenAid mixer, a dutch oven (Aldi has some nice ones for $25 versus $60 everywhere else) and a used Instant Pot.  Why all the kitchen stuff?  Stay tuned and I’ll tell you.

However, now I am pooped. My Buns of Steel got their workout from my endless trips up and down today.  I did go for a quick swim at my beautiful resort-style pool and it was lovely and relaxing.  Exactly what I wanted in my new place.  The final steps have taken place.  I have officially left the old place and now the new chapter begins.  It will be an interesting transition….

It’s Happening

I picked up my keys to my new place today. I went at lunch, tape measure in hand so I could confirm things. I happened to have post-its on me and my furniture measurements were in my phone, so I used the post-its to lay out my furniture. Perfect. Everything will fit – hypothetically.

I am charmed with my place. Now I could have been light-headed from a lack of oxygen due to my climb to the third floor, but I like an upper floor. It faces south and the living area was filled with natural light, but the bedroom is shaded because the balcony is in front. I will have a storage room on the same floor (thank goodness!).

It is perfect for one person. Probably better for one person who isn’t apparently still recovering from hoarding, but I will get there.

Tonight the Hunter dropped by because he wanted one more romp for old times sake. We rolled around gloriously and then I kicked him out so I could pack. It was pretty funny.

I’m just about ready. I have a few things to pack in the morning, but I feel calm and prepared. Ha! That won’t last for long, but it will allow me to sleep. It feels a bit surreal that another huge component of my reset is happening. Thank you, God, Karma, the Universe. I am very, very grateful.

Over 50

I was texting with my daughter, Taz. She was watching “Otherhood”, so she texted me saying how much she loved me. Awww, that was so sweet.

Our conversation continued and she was inquiring how packing was going. I did a quick count and I am over 50 boxes AND I AM NOT DONE! Taz was laughing and challenging if I was truly downsizing. I am! I promise! WTF? How is this going to fit in a one-bedroom apartment?

Let’s break it down:

  • First, these boxes are smaller in size. Slightly bigger than liquor boxes. I only have 3 wardrobe boxes. Yeah, yeah, Denial is not just a river in Egypt.
  • 4 boxes of heirloom Christmas decorations- non-negotiable, these will be divvied up between the kids in the next 3-5 years.
  • 3-4 boxes of kid mementoes. I’ve saddled the kids with about 6 boxes. Once again, another 3-5 years before they are ready.
  • 4-6 boxes of photos and other mementos of mine. This is my next big project. Over the next 12-18 months I want to sort and organize these. Once again in preparation to dump them on the kids.
  • 4 boxes of wine glasses, serving bowls and platters. Stuff to entertain.
  • 5-6 boxes of books, financial records and office supplies.
  • 7-8 boxes for kitchen stuff.

Yada, yada – you see where this is going. I recognize that I have a bunch of memory stuff that the kids want and I refuse to callously toss. I just need to suck it up and finally organize it. I have ideas like a family cookbook complete with photos of past celebrations and the like. The kids know I’ll be working on this for them and they are grateful.

I reviewed my floor plan to see make sure things will fit. Thankfully, I don’t have a sofa so I can get the dining room table settled and then measure out how big a sofa I can get. I think it will be more of a loveseat instead of a sofa. Everything will fit, and hopefully not feel cramped.

This week is tightly choreographed. Pick up keys on Wednesday, movers Thursday, garage sale Saturday, Monday is internet installation, cleaners & Salvation Army pickup Tuesday. Sunday is for unpacking and my girlfriend volunteered her very handy hubby to build my IKEA dresser. Bless them both!

The Hunter came over so we could do some admin work for his company plus he did some laundry. His washing machine in his new place isn’t working. He’s happy. He sent me the sweetest text last night about how grateful he feels towards me. I too am grateful. The man taught me to love again and how to enjoy my sexuality. For that I too am forever grateful. I’ll write more about this later.

Now, time for bed amongst the boxes. I better get that extra storage the new place offers. I’m gonna need it…

Last Night

Last night was the last one of the Hunter and I living together. Tonight he will spend it in his new place. We spent the day packing and figuring out who gets what. It has been pleasant and stress-free.

over the weekend, we went out to dinner, had drinks and talked about how we want us to be going forward. I told him he would be my friend forever. This whole weekend has been filled with mutual admiration and affection.

I have been to his new place. It is perfect for him and the Kracken. He has made countless trips over there moving his things. He is excited and happy about setting up his apartment.

I vastly prefer movers hauling my stuff in one big trip. Plus with me on the third floor, strong men hauling my stuff is a necessity. My big move is later this week, so I will be spending the next four nights alone amongst the boxes. I’m fine with that. It will be my new normal anyway as I get settled in my next chapter.

My change is happening. My next chapter continues. Wow.

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