Scar Tissue

Wow can it really be?

I have made it this far. I’m still here. I’m alive. I’m in a healthy relationship. I am taking care of myself better. I have goals. I am going back to school. I still have so much I want to do. I’m not completely on my shit like I haven’t written fiction properly since NaNoWriMo last year and I think about how I used to write some stories nearly everyday or every other day because of a message board I was apart of. Honestly, it was good I wrote there but I felt it took me away from my real life too much.

Now I want to revisit that fantasy world, those stories left unwritten.

Today I was taking a shower and I shaved my legs (it’s summer soon…) once I dried off to put lotion on I look at an old scar. This scar has faded significantly. In its infancy it was this pulsing burn that accompanied the pained memories of that first violent act between my ex and I. I remember how it looked like it would never heal. I thought my legs are ruined with veins and hair and cellulite now this constant reminder of what he did. It felt it wouldn’t even turn into a scab. I asked my sister in law for help and she recommended using honey as an antibacterial. It would help dry it out. Which it did. Months later I had this white spot on my knee and I felt even more self-conscious of it. A year passed and I hadn’t left him yet.

Two years after, I was free yet heartbroken. On a whim, I flew to New Orleans and I wasn’t thinking about my scar as much as I wore shorts. I was happily distracted with my new paramour.

Three years now, I forgot about it.

The end of this month will mark four years since that fateful night and I look at my knee. It is barely noticeable. I thought it would mark me forever and now I feel like myself again. Still imperfect with veins, ingrown hairs, cellulite but different scars while thoughts of that night drift further away. I still think about him every now and then.

I see the coral I picked up from Hawaii, a trip I took when I loved him. I remember picking up these stones and coral, I was alone on that beach because we were already quarreling so much. I wondered if I should discard them but I remembered I picked those rocks for me, not to remember him. My curiosity got the better of me recently and I looked him up. Despite that, I am so relieved that he’s not apart of my life anymore. Like so fucking relieved.

Can’t Sleep

It seems life just gets busier and crazier. In a good way this time. It still gives me anxiety though! I am spending the night at my bestie’s house in Indiana and I can’t sleep at all. I keep thinking about my trip to Phoenix in a week and after that Ireland in spring then London in summer.

The original plan was to go to Ireland in the summer and then I would pop over to London for a wedding but after lots of discussion and arguing with my boyfriend, we finally settled on going to Ireland for Easter and he offered to cover my expenses for London. It was one week of wondering what is the right thing to do. Trip planning has never been so stressful, we would get somewhere and then we would both be stubborn. Luckily we found a resolution and I am relieved. As hard as that decision was it was a relief to argue about something real. In the past with exes it would be petty shit.

This was real trio we have been planning and we wanted us to have the most time in Ireland with his family as well as giving me a tour of the country. I could be living there one day after all!

In addition to stressing about travels, I finally submitted my application for school and within a week I found out I was accepted! It is fantastic and I am so happy but also nervous. This is a huge step for me and I am committed now. It is daunting.

Yesterday I was given news that I was offered a scholarship as well due to my high GPA in undergrad. I don’t know how much it is yet but I am going to work hard to get more scholarships and grants to finance my education. That was something I didn’t do enough of in undergrad because I didn’t research or go after it. I am definitely going to do some work study. It is kind of exhilarating to be like making amends in a way for my naive approach to financials at age 18. Now a decade later I am wise to go after every avenue to know that at least I tried!

So my mind is full of thoughts of school, my aspirations for this year, all the traveling I am doing before school starts and working extra hours to save up for that first term/semester. Perhaps not sleeping in my bed is keeping me up or a combination of that and feeling like my personal life is finally better than any dream could be.

I can’t ignore the national reality all the time but I just needed this. I have been so drained from the news, the incompotence of the current administration, the racism that is far more overt in the USA now. But my therapist said I am incredibly sensitive to emotions and it makes sense to feel the cuts deeply of our current president’s shitty choices and orders. She told me if I need to close off from it that is what I should do. And I have. I left my phone in my bag when I went for lunch and read an old magazine. I found some free books to read on my phone. I think turning off social media and getting away from the news even in that small time is exactly what I needed. And I am going to keep doing that.

If they don’t let me back into the United States after my trip to Ireland I know myself and I would make shit work. Haha.

Lines Drawn

There’s something to be said about someone showing their genuine interest in you. It’s this little adrenaline rush and if you feel you connected with them, it’s even more exciting. But when that happens and you’re in a relationship it’s so weird.

I had that happen and it’s happened in the past. Most recent occurrence, it happened when I attended a wedding solo because most guests weren’t given a plus one unless they were married. I went and it was my dear friends’ betrothal so I was having the time of my life. I was very social and very in the moment. I’m an extroverted introvert to the max and this evening, I was around close friends and I was in my element. That’s where I met this guy who I presumed to be gay, usually my gaydar is pretty spot on. He seemed like fun so I connected with him on a friendship level quickly. Yes, he’s good looking but nothing to make me stop dead in my tracks. The wedding was in the planetarium and there were restricted areas, my friend Deb, Stacey and I decided we should break the rules and enter the restricted areas. This guy joined us and he was a very good sport of being a look out etc.

Anyway, a few days later I didn’t think much of it when he added me on social media. He messaged me and said he had a wonderful time that evening and it was a pleasure to meet me. I figured he sent a message like this to the other girls and said I had a blast, we were all obviously meant to be friends. I left it at that and didn’t send anything back. Some time elapsed maybe a few more days before he opened up about the fact he was very drawn to me, he wanted to get to know me and take me out regardless of his schedule. I was caught so off guard by the forwardness and vulnerability he was showing.

I’m not used to people being so vulnerable with me so soon, I feel like it was such a brave move but I was confused too because he had invited me to concerts in the previous message. Those concerts were a group thing and now there was this taking me out to stuff message. Was this a group or couple thing? My girlfriends said it was plainly obvious which one it was but I need things spelled out to me sometimes.

I also hated the idea of being that person who is all “I have a boyfriend…” I mean he’s obviously gone out on a limb BUT the truth is I do have a boyfriend and it’s a serious thing. I love my Irishman.

It just got me thinking why do we like the attention because it’s happened to my friends too. I like it some of them like it too. Parts of me wants to know what would happen and before with my ex, I would really let my mind wander because he always accused me of cheating or some guy wanting to get with me. Funnily enough it made me really want to know what it was like to be with others despite being faithful.

My current boyfriend trusts me and this has been the first time someone’s tried to ask me out in a real way since we got back together. I was of course flattered and I knew if I was single I would definitely be interested but I’m not. So I replied back I’m taken.

But the interactions haven’t stopped, he still messages. I found him to be friendly at first but these are “get to know you” conversations and there’s usually no prompting the exchange. I love getting to know people but I’m wary. I love the attention and I can’t lie, I’ve gotten a confidence boost from this. However, the person I message the most is my boyfriend and I want to keep it that way.

Before my Irishman and I got back together, I was texting others and whenever I would meet up with him during that gray area time–I would hide my messages. Now that we are full disclosure with each other, I don’t want to repeat that phase. It was during a period of time that I wasn’t sure if I was in something out of comfort or out of healthy love. I had to date around and see, when I did and I returned I had to make a decision. I decided there was no more messing around. I want to be in this, all in and without anything hidden or anything unsaid. It’s been tricky this week because my boyfriend has been in Ireland visiting family.

I needed lots of attention and he was giving it to me from afar. But I hadn’t a chance to tell him that I got hit on and that this guy continues to message me. I want to share everything even the uncomfortable shit. He told me once that there are some things that should be my own but this is one of those things I have to share. I’m not doing anything wrong but I feel weird. I guess for myself I draw the line here. It went from trying to ask me out and sticking to friendship to still seeking me out. That’s not ok with me.

A Little Prayer

Wanting to put my feelings out there that life is so unpredictable and anything could happen, be it something magical or tragic. I have had my share of both and lately I feel I have had quite a magical ride so far! This past weekend, I spent it with my family to share some empathy and touch base. It was most needed and as always I want more time! We made more plans to meet up in an apple orchard and for them to meet my new love, also to make tamales, and even get together in different states/countries. It filled my heart. Also this morning I got a call from my love that last night he got in a legal hiccup and he is so worried about losing his job or being sent back to his home overseas due to this mistake.

I can’t lie, at first I was in lecture mode and he was straight up in saying that this was the opposite of what he needed right now. He was scared and I have not heard him so scared before, he told me he even cried (he is not emotional like me) and was so anxious he vomited at the thought of his life in America ending because of some bad choices.

For some reason and those who know me best would be shocked, I kept my cool and I honestly believed with absolute certainty that the worst case scenario would not be the scenario. It is weird because I am such a worrier and I’m always going mental about something or the other, but in this case while he was losing his mind with concern–I sat there completely chill knowing it wouldn’t come to that, he wouldn’t be sent away.

And if he was… it wouldn’t change my feelings. Granted, I am annoyed that this even happened. I would be devastated not to spend time with him each week if he was told to go back to Ireland. But it wouldn’t stop me from feeling love for him and for believing that we would find a way to sort it all.

He asked me to pray for him which he has yet to ask of me at all. I said I would and this is me putting out good feels that hopefully more good feels would come our way, especially his way during his time of need. Here’s to a pleasant solution and learning a valuable lesson.

How Can You Be Sure?

I think that’s what bothers me about falling in love again. I was so sure the first time and it was so enveloping. It drowned me.

This time, I can be independent and I like being able to separate the us time and the time with friends or family. I want to share more with him. I want to spend all this time with him and I can see this future before us and i like it. But I get scared. Like is this it? Am I “settling”?  People say never settle but then you might miss out on something truly awesome just because you keep looking for the better scenario. More money, more abs, more flair, etc. Whatever it is people always tell me they’re looking for it’s pretty damn hard to find someone who fits all the criteria. It’s like that scene from Pride and Prejudice when Elizabeth Bennet asks who Darcy’s ideal woman is and Caroline Bingley tells it all, then Lizzie’s all well how the fuck did you expect to find a woman like that I’ve never met someone like that in my own life! Or something like that you know, I paraphrase.

There are totally those contrary voices that come in and say well you’re just being safe or you’re making shit up so that it won’t work out because you like drama. But what the fuck is wrong with safe? I don’t want to be with someone mental and unpredictable someone who could hurt me just because s/he can excite me. This guy still excites me but not in startling ways, it’s like he surprises me with his kindness and selflessness. The way he can listen and be true to himself but it doesn’t come at a cost. He surprises me because he wants to make plans and they actually come to fruition. He said let’s plan a weekend getaway. We had something booked within a week. This man speaks things and they come into existence. He is a man of action and shit, he is inspiring me to get my shit going too.

I want to be all these things but I am struggling because I also don’t want to forfeit my true self. But I also don’t want to just say this is the best version of me, I want to continually improve. I get so worried that I am the only one doubting it felt good to know I wasn’t the only one who had doubts. I just don’t want him to think I will leave him suddenly like I did before. I am looking at this from all angles because I want to make a life the real thing this time. Where I do things that I want to do and make those ideas into realities. speaking things into existence like he does.

Some parts of that will be domestic life but also I want to make sure we don’t get bored. That we still pursue our adventures and so far it feels like that is definitely on the to do list. We’re already planning a Europe trip for next summer. I don’t want things to be monotonous and routine but sometimes I like a bit of routine… fuck I am such a worrier. i stress myself out and give myself anxiety over the future and all he said was to enjoy the ride. I’ll do my damn best!

Think About It

Tomorrow, I am flying to Nashville to visit friends, lay by the pool, listen to live music, drink, eat, and just chill. I am looking forward to it especially since I will go with my best friend. It’s a family reunion of sorts, this friend group is my family in the South. It brings up my trip from February, when I visited Nashville for the first time with my boyfriend of sorts. At the time, I didn’t see him that way. I was still sorting myself out and there was a lot of miscommunication. Our magic from the NOLA trip didn’t transfer to Nashville especially since I wanted to pop by to visit who I consider family. He didn’t see it that way, he saw this as solely a couple’s trip which it was… but there was so much unspoken between us.

Back then, I didn’t know how to talk to him or ask him for what I needed. Emotions ran high and he ended up offending me in a big way by being rude to my friends. I could not get past it and shortly thereafter, I left him. I don’t regret it. It’s one of those things that needed to happen. I needed to be alone. I needed to process my shit and I needed to remove myself from this situation. I was a bit rash believing I had to break up because he couldn’t keep his shit together in Nashville. But I had to re-examine a lot of things.

What I wanted, what was expected of me if I pursue relationships, what I’m looking for and all that shit I’d rather not face. I still don’t know what I want exactly, but at the time I wasn’t satisfied and I wanted to explore what other kinds of love existed. But that’s the deal, I knew I loved him but I thought I didn’t love him like how he should be loved. Now I see that I was in love but I didn’t want to be because I was still grieving my ex. I couldn’t help comparing the two either which is sucky but I totally did it. I thought well I was head over heels for my ex for 2 years, I went bonkers living and breathing in this other person. Wanting everything to do with him and being intoxicated by his presence.

With my NOLA/Nashville guy I wasn’t going insane or completely enveloped in him, I loved hearing his stories and how he rang me up to talk… But I wasn’t obsessive or nearly as possessive as I was with my ex. We were pretty tame and I thought, fuck does this mean that because our love is not intense in every aspect of our relationship that this isn’t going to work out? We’re not oozing romance constantly therefore I can’t really be that in love right? Right.

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Wrong.

Actually, post breakup I felt like I could say all the shit that I didn’t say before. The lines became blurred and I dated other people and so did he… but I kept thinking about him. Not my abusive and intensely passionate ex. I thought about the emotionally healthy guy that took me to different US cities, who checked on me, who was definitely fed up with my mixed signals but couldn’t help but ask what really was going on. We’re so different, we talked about it so much. Similarities here and there, but vastly different in other ways. Not to mention that sometimes I still bring up that ex that broke my heart which after months of courtship must drive him nuts.

So now we’re in this unclear space where we love each other but we haven’t decided what to do about it. Until now. He told me he is at a time in his life where he can’t be messing around. I should think about what I want when I am off in Nashville and he can think about it while he is Wisconsin then we can talk about what we thought about…

Well I am already panicking because part of me is like hell yes, I want this. Let’s try again! Another part of me is like well, flirting and crushing is fun too. Do I want to give that up again? I did try dating other people but that was a total drag for me, people my age are at a time in their life where they DO want to mess around and just explore themselves. Which I totally get, I am still exploring myself but I also don’t want to connect with people who are going to be temporary. I don’t have time for that shit, I’m too emotional for that business too. My time and care is precious, I can’t be giving it away like I used to. I learned that giving too much is damaging.

I can go for this but then I have to be serious and bring up topics that probably make me feel uncomfortable or I can say fuck this, waiting for a grass is greener scenario. Both are a gamble. I guess my real fear is that I will end up being half a boring couple who think about buying houses and marriage. I don’t want to be end up boring. I also don’t want to waste my time dating people who are going to end up being irrelevant months later.

But truthfully, I am kind of boring! I like doing adventurous stuff, but I like being at home in my bed taking pictures of my taco pillow or playing games on my phone. Welp, I have five days to think about it. Be boring by myself or with someone I love? Sounds like an easy decision but for me, it never is.

A Look Back

Soon it will be a year since the biggest, most mature, yet equally heartbreaking breakup of my life. It’s eerie as it is a huge fucking relief. To think of the letters burned or tossed, gifts or clothes that will soon be donated, and I even checked my texts… I found that old conversation dating back to about a month after the breakup. When we tried to talk and it failed. When he attempted to lay groundwork for winning me back and I rejected it. I read every single fucking text. I read and I cringed. I saw my sincere efforts at trying to stay calm and losing my shit on him when he would throw me moon sign jargon.

I thought about leaving it in my saved iMessages but I told myself no. I can’t keep rereading those messages every other month and visiting those feelings. Even now I am itching my chest like I am getting hives thinking about how lovesick I felt at the time. How I had to fight every instinct that told me to contact him or reminded me of how much I loved him. I thought it would take so much longer for those feelings to fade and it makes me kind of sad to think how I thought that love was everything I needed. I worked my ass off to get over him and now I am but it’s not like I’m magically cured of all ills. It still aches like my wrist does even though it was back in high school when I injured it.

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28th

So it’s my birthday. *waves victory flag*

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Taken a month ago… when I was 27 -____-

I made it this far. I feel better lately but I am still an emotional wreck. My therapist says it is about phases and reconstructing yourself. One day I feel like I have my shit together and other days I feel I am breaking down. Today, I felt relieved. I saw my NOLA travel companion/lover/whatever and I was able to hear about his travels. I really enjoy spending time with him yet I was a little sad knowing that the time had to end; when he had to depart and I would be alone again.

I usually like being alone. Today I wanted to spend all that time with him but he has his life and I do have shit to do. It’s one of thing that I find myself doing a lot, I let myself be of service very often and I dislike that. I really want to practice saying no. Which I did earlier, I was rather proud of myself.

I was invited by this guy I like to come to NY. We have been talking back and forth. I’ve liked him for very long fully knowing he is on the east coast… it’s definitely unrealistic but the feels are real. However, I kept bringing up the idea of us meeting up and he said he couldn’t meet me here but I could come there… Yeah, um no. I used to be up for that impulsive shite. I did it before and it was awesome, but not this time. I told him no and I explained that I tend to take chances on people and I need to learn to take chances on myself. I am tired of risking my feelings and my heart. I need to trust myself again and take a break from putting effort into whatever ridiculous fantasy in my head.

I barely have my life sorted, I can’t catch a flight to fucking NYC to maybe have a flirtatious fun time and then it end up in heartbreak. I just can’t afford that shit financially or emotionally. No matter how much I like a person. That’s what 28 years of life has taught me so far. And that I really like being taken out for meals on my birthday in contrast to planning a party… How wise I am. *throws confetti*

Definition Pending

It’s so easy to write off people especially when they make mistakes.

During my tumultuous relationship with my ex who was both physically and emotionally abusive, quite a number of my friends or even acquaintances were eager to label him as this: Batterer, abuser, bad guy etc. They said he’ll never change, he’ll always be in this person who would use his anger in the most frightful of ways. I knew that he had this strong reaction to certain events or words. It made me cower and retreat. I was always so careful with my words and actions should they lead to an all out match between us. But I would see him as more than this man who would fuck up and hurt me so. It sucked and it wasn’t right that I stuck it out so long. That I kept trying to fix myself because I thought that I was the reason he would explode. Sometimes I triggered him and other times I would escalate.

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How To Fall In & Out of Love

I follow TedTalks like many Millennial Americans that I encounter on a daily basis.

The one that keeps popping up on my feed as if I needed “to fall in love” (which I don’t because love is usually what gets me into all sorts of trouble) is Mandy Len Catron‘s talk: “Falling in love is the easy part”. It speaks about her article in the NYT about her little experiment of asking 36 questions and stare into each other’s eyes for a full 4 minutes in order to fall in love. This experiment was conducted originally by Arthur Aron and it was way more scientific whereas Mandy’s experiment was more of a lark but she did the whole shebang. Yes, she did fall in love and her TedTalk is about the choice to fall in love and how there’s more beyond the experiment. The love you may find after conducting the experiment may not be the romantic variety however it still strengthened or sparked a love that may not have been at the stage previously.

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