Because they won’t like me if…

Where would we be without boys?  I mean Men.  I mean the opposite sex.  I mean OH I don’t know what I mean.  It has been a life’s decision to call the guys I am attracted to BOYS in an effort to lessen their importance to my emotional psyche as to not obsession constantly about them.  This has been met with mixed results, but at least I am trying, right?

I find myself at home in post Super Bowl bliss because despite the absolute dominance of the Seattle Seahawks (I am a 49er fan), I enjoyed the game immensely.  And for none of the expected reasons.  It was a pleasant surprise and quirky turn of events; that led the joyful, energetic emotions I am experiencing.  Since it has been so long since I have written, I am feeling at a loss on where to start and what to say. So let us begin with the realization of last Friday…

I have a friend I chat things up with from time to time and we usually are deep into the spiritual and psychological brain teasing at what ever stage of life we are in.  Through all the discussions we had the one that hit me like a lightning bolt was the one about my bad habit of trying to PROVE how good I am to the boys I am interested in. Since I have not been exactly successful in attracting the opposite sex to even the step of asking me out, asking for my number or complimenting me; I figured it was time to branch out and try something new.  A lot like the Pink shoes.

As a result of some new boys in my circle, I am coming face to face with my emotions and wants and totally and completely CRAZY bad habits.  With each interaction, I am finding myself completely disturbed by my actions.  So I start to ask myself WHY are you doing that?  Why did you say that?  Why do you feel compelled to do this?  And the answer was always buried in the motive that I needed to PROVE I was good at that particular task.

I needed to bring a STELLAR dish because I needed to PROVE I was a good cook.  I needed to be witty and sarcastic to PROVE I had a good sense of humor.  I HAD to dress up to PROVE I cared about my appearance.  I had to offer up some deep spiritual insight to PROVE my relationship with God was real.  I was REQUIRED to help with EVERYTHING to PROVE I was a serving person. And on and ON the process went for my behaviors in front of guys I was interested in.  I was starting to see the pattern emerge little by little.   I had not quite DUG into the depths of the WHY and HOW COME or WHEN did that start until I had this REVEALING conversation with my friend in the Spaghetti Factory Parking lot at almost midnight.

He was describing some of the reasons he acted he did, and it sent my wheels a turning.  As I began to look at my actions through a similar lens it hit me hard and QUICK.  I do these things to PROVE I am a good woman, worthy of dating, deserving of a partner in crime because in all honesty I do not believe they will be attracted to me based on my appearance alone.  And since I have been told For FOREVER that Guys are only attracted to what they SEE, I must SHOW THEM PROOF; they can look beyond just the physical to all these other ACTIONS and BEHAVIORS to like me, want me, desire me, love me.

WHAM!!! There it is AGAIN, my self-worth or lack there of based solely and completely on my appearance.  That age-old struggle between believing I can be loved as is or only once I change. UGH, ICK, ARG.. really THAT AGAIN?!!?!!??!  It really is TAINTING EVERYTHING ABOUT ME ISN’T IT??? Okay maybe that is being a little overly dramatic (that is the drama queen in me acting up.)

But it was in that moment of clarity that I began again with the strategy for future self-talk.  And a decision to begin loving myself as I am. Being thankful for the body God has given me regardless of the flaws.   To become more at peace with who I am ENTIRELY and wear the confidence of acceptance each and every day.  So now it is just a matter of wearing that confidence around the boys, which leads me to two more life changes: Be in the moment and Just be yourself. To be blogged about later…

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It was just an Awkward night… and then there was the Super Bowl

“What are you looking for?’  Which I believe was intended as a job seeking inquiry.

“I’m looking for a Red-head, Nice body, witty personality; like the Wendy’s commercial girl…”

Is kind of what I thought I heard.  Upon which it was quickly followed up with: “I have dated a lot of blondes and that never ended well.”

Only to hear one of the Married People chime in with my name and a point in my direction.

“HUH?”  Was the only reply I could muster, especially since I am not a natural blonde; but wasn’t in a position to share that with a room full of practically ALL strangers.  I am sure that it looked like there was a look on my face that resembled complete cluelessness or of the hamster wheel spinning to only produce NUTHING.  I had NOTHING.  Which is very uncommon for me.  I am usually very quick on my feet with the sarcastic witty response of the hour.  I consider myself a fairly confident conversationalist in almost any arena; only to be vested speechless in embarrassing or self-conscious moments.  SO this one was a double WHAMMY!!!

Now after suffering that little moment of AWKWARDNESS, the rest of the night was a total disaster.  I was actually trying to get some conversational time with another guy (don’t judge me, I’m single) The Comedian; but we just couldn’t get two moments together in the same room.  Not to MENTION I was having one of those awkward nights where I just couldn’t feel normal in my own skin.  I didn’t know what to DO with myself at any point in the evening.  So I loitered and wandered from room to room aimlessly gaining more and more frustrated as the evening progressed.

The newbie has recently moved here from Wyoming at God’s direction but with no friends and no job; I have no idea how he arrived at Horizon; but that is true of most people.  In personality and interests, I can definitely see some similarities; but he is a full 11 years my younger and I refuse to think myself a COUGAR, so friends seems like the best path.

A week later we seem to acquire the same general space at the Super Bowl party among the singles group.  He is from Colorado so the Broncos are his pick for the evening, while I am rooting for the Seahawks more in regional support than a TRUE die hard fan (born and raised a 49er fan). Even before the game began, we are talking about life, unemployment, Portland, Wyoming, etc.  I make a crack about the red head he is searching for, and he brings up the KISS Dating Goodbye book.  With sarcastic disdain and witty comments galore about how it ruined his good dating years in the Christian community and I INSTANTLY feel like I have a NEW besty.  We discuss the finer points of its colossal misguided attempt to help Christian singles and the WHOLE idea of masculinity in American culture and how the church has adopted this belief hook line and sinker. I make my usual comment about how we single people did it to ourselves by telling all the married people to stop meddling, setting us up, and having parties where we are invited without a partner.

At which point, I must bring up my favorite counter measure to that book which is Henry Cloud’s How to get a date worth keeping and discussing its finer points.  It was a great discussion; only to have a few people around the room agree and disagree with us as we seemed to have our own discussion with an audience. As usual, I blow off any contrary opinions believing their experiences to be the exception and not the rule.

I tried to keep my sarcastic comments about how badly the Broncos were playing, but they did it to themselves.  We laughed at a spattering of commercials and made comments in and among the plays.  At one point, I noticed we were both leaning toward each other on the OVER stuffed chair arm; which caught me off guard a bit because it was totally unconscious (at least for me). No fear, no paranoia, no uncomfortableness, no wondering what this meant, it just was.  Reminds me of the friendships I had back at Sunnyside with all the guy friends, we were just comfortable around each other and openly discussed life, God, the world, etc.  Oh how I miss those friendships, although not romantic in anyway; the ability to discuss, debate, and share life was AWESOME.

So I got to leave the Super Bowl party full of energy and a refreshed spirit like I have not experienced in a LONG LONG time.  And although the comedian was present during the 2nd half we still did not converse, only having a brief comedic exchange about the game.

New Year’s Eve – The Comedian has arrived

As I waited around trying to decide what to do with my New Years Eve the time was slowly ticking away. I don’t get a lot of invitations, but there is a regular standing event with the Singles group. And some how I just wasn’t in the mood to go, but the little voice in my head kept saying… You should go. And as much as I argued that I didn’t want to go, it was insistent. “You like the goals part” it would said, “you should go.”

So in an attempt to appease the voice, not because I believed anything good would come from it, I got ready to go. I decided to pull out the cute new jeans I had purchased a few months ago, but had not quite found the right event to wear them. So I tore off the new tags and added a sparkly shirt and called it good. Well maybe I also did a little curling of the hair and a dash of lipstick. I mean it was New Years Eve after all and there MIGHT be single guys. But I wasn’t holding my breath.

I arrive and find myself a seat next to my trusted friend Miss D just to take up space and wait for the goals time. I didn’t eat or socialize or really notice who was around. And leave it to Lisa to create a game and divide us into teams. It was a form of pictionary based on the New Years Eve theme. I wasn’t even really thinking, I wasn’t even trying, I wasn’t even really paying attention. But I like to win, I like to beat other people, so YES I am just a little competitive.

It was a pretty amazing game because with almost every clue I guessed the item within 30seconds. That was all except for the one guy who was attempting to draw a table of appetizers and all I saw was buffet, potluck, dinner, lunch, etc etc. Not a clue. It was in that one miss that we lost to the other team. But what seemed to attract my attention was the fact that he was truly amazed at my ability to guess. He was giving me high five’s and showering me with praises at my ability to figure it out. IT was a little confusing and almost contrary to everything I was feeling, but I decided to just GO with it.

So we get to the goals section where I get to see what I wrote down last year or was it the year before. It is what I expected, as I managed to move myself into the deep thoughts moment I was searching for, I wrote my goals for this new 2014 year. Not as many and a few way more specifically defined. Continuing on with the hard work and effort I have been making. I feel someone loitering over my shoulder but I allow them to stay there and I am almost not even trying to hide what I have written because I am not ashamed or even apologetic when it comes to the things I want to change about myself.

As I finish up and wander to the center of the room to drop off the tiny piece of paper in the sacred bucket (to be read next year); I feel a friends hand on my shoulder. “Don’t move for just a moment” I hear. It is the lovely Miss K proceeding to pull a sticker off the back of my pants. THE SIZE STICKER I realize!!!!! THAT GIANT LONG strip of plastic all the way down my butt and my thigh. I feel the hottest of moments of embarrassment and struggle to not allow myself to meltdown internally because of this one little instance. As I was about to return to my seat thanking Miss K for TAKING care of me, I hear this VOICE from across the room.

“IT WAS ME I SAW IT! I WAS THE ONE!” While I am totally perplexed at the moment with how to react and how to feel and how to respond. I some how manage to joking throw out there, “Thanks for looking out.” And mosey my way across the room back to my seat. Now I had done it. I had exposed myself to a HORRIFICALLY embarrassing experience right HERE and I didn’t even want to BE HERE. I fight tooth and nail with my psyche to NOT let it get THAT bad, to not DWELL on my crazy, to NOT spiral out of complete control from the moments of joy and fun I WAS truly having.

Then I started to question WHY would you do that? Why would you draw attention to yourself like that? Why would you want this perfectly nice stranger to KNOW it was YOU who detected this fatal flaw in her wardrobe? What could you possibly have to gain? ANd it was in that moment the BEST POSSIBLE REVELATION FLASHED through my mind.

He was looking at my Ass!!! He was checking me out? Oh MY Goodness!!! Now That is what that feels like. Now this is something I could get use to, sticker or not. The attention seeking, quiet funny, generously kind, cleverly creative, appetizer guy wanted MY attention on HIM even if it was for an embarrassing sticker. Everyone I’d like you to me The Comedian.

Psalms 45 – Just a Few Things

Months and months ago I wrote a series based on the list I had created years ago called What I look for.  This all started from a few of my friends saying I needed to make my list.  I needed to know in my mind, heart, and print what I was looking for in the man I wanted to partner with in this life.  I even found a section in one of my favorite books that provided a list of things that should be asked when determining if someone is a Person of Character.  I even put it on my blog as a separate page to remind myself from time to time.

Well just as I had completed that series a blast from my past arrived on my door step.  Well maybe not my door step but my Facebook page, and these days that might as well be your front door.  After a series of conversations, dates, non-dates, community dinners, friend introductions, and the like; we have decided that a relationship between the two of us would be a bad thing (we being me).  Bad meaning unhealthy, dysfunctional, co-dependent, draining, chaos causing, and frustrating (is there anything else that would make something bad?) But I am getting distracted from the real topic, which is that I think I found a few more things to add to my list.

This psalm is referred to as a wedding song, so what better way to identify those things I WANT in my future partner than here.  Now I promise not to rewrite the entire chapter, since I realize that would be redundant and most importantly impractical or improbable. But since I get to decide what I want, and what I will pray for and what I am hoping for out of this chapter, then that is what I am going to WRITE.  SO THERE.  I don’t sound a little defensive do I? But in all seriousness allow me a few moments to share a heart felt inspiration as a piece of scripture is inspiring me to draw a connection to my life in this season. 

My heart is stirred
     You are the most excellent of men and your lips have been anointed with grace, since God has blessed you forever.
          Gird your sword on your side, you mighty one; clothe yourself with splendor and majesty. 
               In your majesty ride forth in the cause of truth, humility and justice, let your right hand achieve awesome deeds. 
                    Your throne, O god, will last forever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom.
                         You love righteousness and hate wickedness; therefore God, your God, 
                               has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy.                          

With grand expectation and hopeful want, I desire a man who will have lips that use words laced with grace and not criticism.  That God’s heart for my well-being and growth would be communicated from him as gracious items of life and not destructive points leaving me bruised and wounded at the mere mention of the words.  Not that truth wouldn’t be spoken, but that he would know that fine art of speaking truth in love to me. 

Although I do not require my man to be a card-carrying member of the sword wielding guild, he must have the confidence that builds him to a place of being the mighty one in his life.  That he know who he is in God and that he knows where he is going.  He is confident in his mind and heart to carry the sword of the spirit and the shield of faith in this crazy world of church, friends, family, and work. (Kind of a compliment to my favorite artist’s picture on my blog.)

That his values run deeper than this is what my parents taught me.  That his life philosophy includes fighting for the cause of truth, humility, and justice.  The world may not be fair and there will be injustices that will be done in front of us and to us; but that does not negate the need to do life towards those goals.  Just as there is a balance between truth and grace there is a balance between confident mighty strength and honest genuine humility; and in these I want him to know the difference and strive to achieve this. 

In the deepest core of my soul lies the belief that it is important to be fair and just in my decisions and actions.  Even if this means someone gets a benefit over me.  So reading this scripture that speaks to the scepter of justice ruling over his kingdom, really resonates with what I believe to be one of my most important life decisions.  So he must also value truth and justice above all else.  (and the American way?)  Funny how certain things end up programmed in the back of one’s mind. 

Finally, the anointing you with the oil of joy, has become so important in my life I cannot imagine living in a partnership without it.  I did not move into adulthood a happy or joyful person.  Too much tragedy, complaining, and hurt had not allowed me to embrace those things.  But as healing, acceptance, friendship, and grace has found its way into my life I began to realize that joy is an important part of everyday.  It doesn’t always FEEL that way, and I may not always express it or live in it, but it is a choice at those times for me to still allow God’s joy to change my perspective and attitude.  So he must also have that same desire to look for the joy, seek out the good, and make the best of any given situation. 

After all, I am typing this in the midst of a rainy Oregon day while camping, in a tent, by herself; if a girl can find the good in that part, well then he is definitely SHOULD be able to as well.

Remember When?

So there I was reading my daily dose of Damsel in Distress (not really more like Damsel in Dating Distress but anyway…), trying to decide whether to keep subscribing, when at the end she posed an ALL to curious question to her readers, “…I’d like to ask about your most desperate moments.  Surely I’m not the only who spends more time at the post office than I do at the gym?”  

With that, I was immediately teleported BACK in time to what I consider one of the TOP 5 most embarrassing, desperate moves of my dating career – because the love notes in Jr. High just should NOT be counted. 

My act of complete desperation was many years ago, so many that I do not believe I owned a CD player yet, and the INTERNET had not yet been invented by Al Gore.  Given that I believe I can at least blame it on my youthful innocence… or was that ignorance I feel comfortable enough to share my torturous story of humiliation.  Although, I still reflect on that action as being completely embarrassing to this day… And if I ever end up sharing the same social space with this person again, I am likely to pass out of embarrassment long before the “How ya been?” questions even start. But these are the things that make us the mature, responsible, SANE people we are today, RIGHT? Learning from our mistakes… pledging to NEVER REPEAT THEM NEVER EVER AGAIN!?!!?!?

I was young, in love (yes I have actually felt that feeling), in like, and my brain was in complete agreement that THIS was the beginning of a WONDERFUL relationship.  I was completely head over heels in complete infatuated bliss with this GUY. The words he is:  Awesome, Cool, The one, worth the wait, knows how to push my buttons, the perfect guy who was going to make all my single girl fantasies come true never had swirled around my mind so vigorously.

So when he ever so politely tried to break up with me (well-tried meaning I DIDN’T get the hint) prior to returning to military duty with the ALL to classic “Your just too good for me, I don’t deserve you” speech; I could not be deterred.  So at least a dozen letters (yes hand written letters) later, I was inspired by a SONG, that I COULD NOT keep to myself, of course.  So I did what any love struck crazy girl does I made MIXED TAPE of sorts (anyone remember those) and sent it off into the great unknown.  It was sappy, it was romantic, it was country, it was GARTH BROOKS for heaven’s sake. But what is a girl to do when she believes she has found her hero?  What does a women say after experiencing a perfect date, a sexy kiss, a deep connection, and a fantastic conversation that is beyond imagination? 

So yes, I have been the victim of the romantic gesture that translated into an act of dismal desperation.  And as to be expected there was NO reply, no response, no contact… Some how it took more than just silence to deter me back then.  I was bound and determined, collected and convinced it was just a matter or time and devotion.  Ah the amount of harassing he must have received from his buddies over this silly woman who won’t give up.  How silly I must have looked, how utterly deluded I must have seemed to not realize the truth… he’s gone and he’s never coming back for me. 

Ahhh the horror, the humiliation, the DESPERATION that I felt in performing those acts so way back when.  So much of this action did I perform in the idea of devotion and commitment.  How silly was I to believe I knew what men wanted, or what guys find attractive.  It was this exact behavior that led my sister to so graciously recommend (more like Doctor’s Ultimatum) I read a book, “He’s just not that into you”.  I laughed, ignored the recommendation and attempted to focus on other areas of my life. 

Having read that book since I realize my whole act (or acts) or desperation were in complete violation of this books recommendation because as much as women (yes that would be me) don’t want to believe it.  When a guy finds all sorts of “reasons” for not being with you…. He’s really JUST not into you, PERIOD.  End of story.  No amount of letters, begging, pleading, song sending, flirting, devoting time and energy, romanticizing, or cooking (I think I sent him cookies) will change his mind.  Such an embarrassing lesson learned.  But at least I can say I have learned it. 

Now the only guys I obsess over are famous ones… I mean I can’t get Vin Diesel or John Cusack’s REAL address so there’s no way to send them obsessively sappy love letters; or my infamous Ooeey goooey Chocolate Chip cookies either.  Oh cookies sound good…

It’s Everything and Nothing ALL in one Post

So what does one write about when there is too much and not enough to write about all at the same time?  I have over 2 dozen half posts started, but not certain I have the energy or time to sort through the emotions and deep thought it takes to masterfully craft a creative post.  Then I was reminded of a friend of mine who says that a blog is supposed to be an account of what is happening now.  What are the things I am thinking now in the moment, kicking around the corners of the mind at this particular time.  And THEN I start to get overwhelmed with all the different things that are kicking around my mind.  So maybe in an attempt to find clarity and cohesive thought a list might be in order (yes I am a list maker, it has served me well over the years, so I do it often):

I am in Sacramento on a work trip, so there are all the TO DO’s wrapped around work, plus the stress of my boss arriving on Tuesday, Go-Live (where we change software systems), Political hub-bub that comes with Regional People on-site.  Being put on the spot for all challenges and issues and questions and hoping upon hoping I did a good enough job with the training that it KINDA sticks enough for the people to do their jobs… YEAH NO PRESSURE.

I am visiting friends and their 2 kids, which is fun but at times I feel I’m in the way, not knowing if I’m contributing enough or spending enough time with them since there are parts of my vacation that I like nothing more than truly being lazy and brain dead.  It has almost become a thanksgiving tradition to do nothing and accomplish nothing; but I don’t know if that is a throw back from my student days where I would half believe I would catch up on school work during these four days… all the while being pressured to just HAVE FUN or veg.

Financially, I made a serious boo boo and paid my bills, sounds harmless, but lets just say my reimbursement check may have been “processed” but my bank hasn’t seen it yet so it might as well not exist.  OOOPS Silly Dave Ramsey, getting me ALL excited about paying my bills.

Food is always a fun topic, but for some reason I just can’t quite get my emotions to tell me the truth.  One minute I’m in complete control and the next moment all I want is 5 kinds of fast food RIGHT NOW!!! I thought I survived Thanksgiving fine, because I didn’t do sweets and I thought I kept my portions relatively in check; but the scale corrected me and it was a heart wrenching, depressing blow to my ego.  As a result Friday sucked and Saturday isn’t looking much better.  Dang it why does food have to taste so good… all the wrong kinds.

Positive health note: I went for a 1.5 mile walk today and it was easy.  I used my rain coat because it decided to be a GLORIOUSLY rainy Oregon Day in Elk Grove.  But it made walking easy and I had lovely time and it wasn’t hard and I really TRULY enjoyed the time with the iPod and my “driving” mix.  Thank you Lisa for the INCREDIBLE idea of finding songs that make the body MOOOOOOVE!!! So for the record that would be 3 times I have exercised on this trip, which is more than I have done in over 5 months.  SO THERE TURKEY DAY!!! 😛

I have been doing my bible reading just about every day and even though it is not quite the emotional high I want it to be, I am doing it.  I have been reading my Divine Mentor book and keeping on track with the meetings and discussions.  I have been praying and taking quiet time with God and not letting the television run all my quiet time.  Although I have had to fight my chatty Kathy tendencies to make that quiet time exist also.

I am away from my new community and they are having all these fantastic events that I get to hear about through email, yet I am a whole state away.  I miss the interactions and laughter that spending time with them generates.  I am hoping that I will not be forgotten (insert fake sniffle here) and that when I return it will all be the same but different.

Finally, I have been conversing with my X (yes that would be an ex-boyfriend from over a ZILLION years ago).  It’s been a roller coaster of sorts, but for some reason I’m still engaged in conversations.  Some how some way were are bringing out the best and worst of each other during our conversations.  But the more we talk the better it gets, and just when I think this is it.  This is one more chance around the merry-go-round and I AM DONE, something cool happens and it changes.  Hmmm interesting.  Yet I think we have finally reached a more grounded friendship conversation style more focused around life and God and less about US and relationships.  THANK GOODNESS.

So there it is a post about everything and nothing all at the same time.  Enjoy!

What has your journey been like?

In a confession booth that is blogging, I can honestly confess I have done my fair share of online dating.  I have a witty monologue I have shared with each of my friends, family, and perfect strangers that I will go out with ANYONE ANYWHERE – ONCE.  As I get older day by day, it has become even more like a challenge I throw out almost DARING people to set me up – blind date, online persona, friend of a friend, brother’s cousin’s best friend from high school, new random single guy at church – I’m not picky and I’m available (that’s another funny story).  Now I’m not desperate or willing to settle or have no standards; but as a very wise author told me (told me through the printed pages of his book): Get your numbers up.  The more people you meet, the more things you learn about yourself, more you experience the personalities and types of people, and the more practice you get relating with people will improve you overall as a person… The expected results being Getting a Date worth keeping (have I mentioned lately how much I LOVE this book)

Even though I am still what you would call a CHICKEN when it comes to approaching guys, flirting, touching, and engaging total strangers of the HOT variety (yes I know that is my responsibility to work on); but I am trying to communicate that I am OPEN to dating.  Almost even WANTING to date.  Now that being said I realize I may have to clarify my definition of DATE, because the world and even the Christian community at large seems to be in conflict about the definition of a date or dating. 

Date: Two people of the opposite sex participating in an activity ALONE, having not defined their relationship as JUST FRIENDS. 

Now that being said it could be stated that when my cousin and I go out to a movie together we are dating… BUT COME ON… that relationship is already DEFINED.  Family – EWwwwwwwwwwwww

I truly believe that culture, media, literature, nosey married people, desperate single people, and paranoid parents have really perverted the purpose of dating.  It should be (and can be) an activity of public nature that allows 2 people who have a curiosity about each other to casually go do an activity ALONE to experience that person’s well PERSONHOOD.  This does not imply nor SUGGEST that intimate physical activities of any kind need to take place.  AND there should not be an expectation of that (I don’t care how much expensive said festivities totaled).  It should also not come with expectation of marriage talk or how many kids does that person want to have; could I even be so bold as to suggest there be no PRESSURE from either side that another said date is in the future?  So with that pollution and confusion that seems to intimidate most men and scare off most women (each having their respective fears of WHAT DOES THAT MEAN talk); I am still baffled how ANY one gets together any more. 

So the online venue has become the method of choice for introductions these days.  Whether it is eharmony, plenty of fish, yahoo chat rooms, facebook, myspace, Christian mingle, match.com or the like; this online process is becoming as dangerous as an actual face to face date to navigate.  First you have to write a clever profile, and since I am not surrounded by single men these days (OR I WOULDN”T NEED THE INTERNET) I cannot ask for legitimate feedback upon whether I have a clever, cute, witty, eye catching profile; so I am thinking what a woman would want but I don’t want a woman I want a MAN.  And as much literature has told us OVER and OVER… MEN and WOMEN don’t think the same – most of the time. 

So upon me responding to a guy’s inquiry (YES he contacted ME), he proceed to ask a question I had not received before in the online arena. 

What has your journey been like?

Journey?  Had we been talking about travel?  Did I mention I was returning from a work trip?  Was he talking about an alcoholic tendency I had not yet discovered?  Was he referring to an emotional hang up I was so clever to include in my profile, but had forgotten?  I didn’t mind him asking… if that had been part of the thread of conversation.  But this seemed disconnected and out of left field.  So in my attempt at sounding open and witty, healthy but not delusionally perfect I offer up my answer. 

Journey usually means struggles and trials to me… so how does one offer up their most sensitive details to a stranger?  Guess its obvious I have not completely flushed out all my issues to the point of public declaration. 😀  Most of my journey has been a battle of the mind.  Anxiety, Depression, Rejection, Failure and my reaction to those things.  Seeking out others to fill what I would not let God heal, using food as a substitution for joy and love, and letting my emotions rule every decision and thought I had. 

I didn’t have the pull to drink or take drugs to manage my pain because food was cheaper and legal. 🙂 But on this side of the mountain I can definitely see that my behaviors were the same just using a different method.  So you could say I am a believer in God’s grace, loving healthy friends, caring community, and level-headed listening counselors as necessary ingredients to navigate this mine field of life. 

Is that vague and honest enough I hope? 

The authenticity thing is an interesting debate because I was so spoiled in my 20’s to be part of a college age group that believed in honesty, authenticity, and openness that it became my norm in life.  What I didn’t realize until I moved away was that what enabled us to have that was an AMAZING group of people who established a culture of trust, correction, and love.  So that people could be open and honest and real with minimal amounts of rejection and pain.  (Then I moved out into the real world and got the slow hard slap of reality handed to me.  GOOD TIMES!!!)

How did I do? As many times as I ask questions on this blog, I would genuinely be interested in the response to this one.