Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Laser tag + Rocky Votolato = weekend of awesome

F and I had an amazing weekend.  There were a couple of blips, but I think we handled them well.

F picked me up on Friday evening to go over to Fort Flagler to play laser tag.  As soon as I got into the car, his brother called and they spent a good 15-20 minutes on the phone.  This kind of ticked me off because it had been a few days since we'd seen each other and we were on our way to pick up another friend, so this was the only chance we'd have to catch up for a few hours.  However, I didn't want to be the bitchy girlfriend, so I was trying to cover up my annoyance.  I am piss-poor at covering up feelings, so of course F knew. 

In a typical relationship, I wouldn't want to tell him that I was upset because I didn't think it was reasonable of me, but I would still be upset, so the guy would just end up having to guess and try to work it out of me.  This would go on for a while and possibly start a fight.  The antidote to my annoyance is usually just to be heard, and then it dissipates.  I just want to get it out, and then I'm fine.  It's getting to where I feel ok letting it out that's the problem. 

This is why F is so amazing.  After asking me if I was mad a couple of times, and having me refuse, he said, "You're upset that I was on the phone with my brother right after I picked you up, but you don't think you're justified in being upset, so you're trying to hide it and not be upset."  He just summed up everything that I was feeling so perfectly that it made me laugh and it was all better.  I also loved that he picked up on the fact that it was the timing, not that he was talking to his brother.  It's so great that F knows me that well.  All I needed were my feelings to be acknowledged (justified or not) and then I was fine.  It's when I try to hold things in that hell breaks loose.

The rest of the weekend was great.  We stayed in a hotel overnight, and then played laser tag all Saturday afternoon.  There was a potential meltdown at the end when I was tired and hungry and wanted to leave, but I held it together.  Saturday evening we came back to town just in time for a Rocky Votolato show.  F stayed over that night, and then on Sunday we went over to his place.  I studied while he cleaned the garage.  Sunday evening we had Japanese food for dinner and saw The Town.  He didn't leave until 2am on Sunday night (early Monday).  We had spent 56 hours straight together and I didn't want him to leave!  I can't get over how much I enjoy having him around all the time.  Things just keep getting better and better.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Look at how far I've come and how far I'm about to go

Last night was my first class, comprehensive school counseling.  It was great!  Better than I'd hoped.  It's been almost six years since I finished my undergrad, so I was terrified I'd be too rusty.  But then I started talking to people, and a 25-year-old who had only been out for a couple of years was worried about the same thing.  She made me feel old.
Class just flew by.  We started out with a group exercise, and I learned that people think I'm quiet (no surprise there).  However, I did become more vocal towards the end of the activity, after I had gotten a chance to observe and get a sense of who everyone was.  But apparently it's only the first impressions that count.  I guess being more talkative from the beginning is something I will have to work on. 
This class seems like it won't be insanely hard.  We have some reading due every week, and then a few papers and group presentations.  The teacher said that in grad school they want papers to be shorter...no more rambling on trying to fill 15 pages.  Yay!  I'm looking forward to that because I think I'm better at shorter pieces.  For example, at my job I'm working on an abstract for a conference and a longer paper to submit to a journal.  I'm having so much fun with the abstract, tweaking everything to make sure the point comes across clearly in under 2250 characters.  The paper, on the other hand, is excruciating.  I hate working on it because it just feels so long and overwhelming.
Tonight I have my other class, counseling skills.  I think that one is going to be harder because they will be recording us to watch and analyze, and that kind of thing always makes me nervous.  But I am looking forward to learning and challenging myself and continuing to grow from this experience.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

SKOOOOL!!!!

I start school tonight.  I'm trying to keep calm and not be too terrified so I don't get a migraine.  Class doesn't start until 6pm, so I have an entire workday to get through. 

Last night F came over.  We didn't do much, but it was nice having him there.  He messed around on the computer while I sewed up my Daphne and Delilah monsters, a gift for a baby due next month.  I finished everything but the face, so he had this idea to take a picture that obscured the unfinished part as a teaser for my friends.  I think it turned out rather well:



Before he left I had a little freak out about school, but luckily F is amazing at calming me down.  Unluckily, he can't be here at work with me.  Well, technically he could but it might be a little odd.  :)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Today is a two teacup kind of day

Rawr.  This week has been gross.  The weather is yucky, work is yucky, and I just kinda want to tell most people to stop overstepping boundaries.

I am really looking forward to this weekend.  F and his friend canceled their big Canadian road trip and instead are just going to drive around the state for a couple of days.  They are leaving today and will be back late Saturday night.  That means I have Friday evening and all day Saturday to recharge and I'm so excited.  I'm going to watch Tivo and Netflix and finish the sleeves on my Central Park Hoodie.  I'm also going to do a thorough cleaning of my apartment (hopefully without any asthma attacks) so it's all clean before I start school.  It's gonna be fantastic (in a very lame sort of way)!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Adjustments

I had a bit of a meltdown last night.  Although there were real reasons, I admit it might have been my emo-PMS day.  I usually have one day a month where I am especially teary and then the rest of the month I'm totally fine.

Friday I spent the night at F's for the first time.  It was a little difficult since I'm a light sleeper and don't sleep well in strange places, but it wasn't too terrible.  Then we spent the entire Saturday together going to a car show, eating Thai for dinner, grocery shopping, and hanging out at my apartment.  He left around 1am. 

Sunday I made pear cider all day with friends, then F came over around 7 to help me make lasagna to freeze for work lunches.  Lasagna making lasted until around midnight, so I had almost no time to myself from Friday-Sunday.  I felt out of balance.  Before F, my life was busy on the weeknights, but calmer on the weekends so I had a chance for my introverted side to recharge.  My ex-non-boyfriend was a bartender, so we rarely hung out on weekends.  But F's schedule is very flexible, and so he's beginning to take over my weekends as well as some of my weeknights.

On top of everything, yesterday I talked to my therapist about my ex-non-bf, which stirred up some sadness.  It's hard to describe how I feel about him.  I am over him in my head, and logically I know that he's not the person I should be with.  He did not treat me well, and he frequently made me cry.  But I still can't help being sad over the way everything ended.  I'm heartbroken that I put so much effort into that relationship for so many years only to be rejected.  My hard work didn't pay off in this situation.  And of course I miss the fun times we had together.  Even though I don't want to be with him, I ache when I think about him.  And I want to call him sometimes, but I know it's a bad idea.  Maybe someday we can be friends, but not yet.

During my meltdown I was talking to F online.  I told him I was upset.  And he said ok and then 5 minutes later he called me!  We rarely talk on the phone, but he thought it would be better to talk instead of type (plus he was driving).  Just him knowing what would make me feel better and doing it was so amazing.  Ex-non-bf would never have done that.  He would not have stayed with me until he knew I was ok.  And that's why I'm with F now.  He doesn't make me cry.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

The story of us

F and I met in the fall of 1999. It was our senior year of high school, and we sat next to each other in English. I don’t remember much about our early interactions (I had a boyfriend), but I think we gradually became acquaintances, especially after one of my friends started dating one of his friends. In the spring we were all in the same Hamlet video group, which involved filming at F’s house on the weekend. We all got to know each other better during that project, and around that time F and I started chatting online.

Fall of 2000 I went away (1.5 hours) to college, and right before my birthday he visited and brought me really thoughtful presents. It’s hard to pinpoint when exactly it was because it was so gradual, but eventually it became clear that I had feelings for F and needed to dump my high school boyfriend.

F and I became official at the end of October and had five tumultuous months together. We were crazy about each other and things were quite passionate, yet stormy. I had a lot of things I still needed to work through. That accompanied by the fact that I had virtually no healing time between relationships doomed us. We argued frequently, and mostly it was my doing. He was great to me, but I was so insecure that I was constantly picking fights to test him, which of course backfired on me in the end. When I came home for spring break in March 2001 he told me we were finished, at least until I sorted out all my issues.

I was devastated. Spring quarter was extremely difficult.  Eventually I picked myself back up enough to be interested in other guys, but F was always in the back of my mind.

I started dating J in Sept. 2001. At some point F and I started talking again, and we were friends while I was with J. J and I broke up for a few months in 2004, and during that time F and I rekindled things. Again it just wasn’t good timing because I was so fresh out of a relationship. Things fizzled and I went back to J for two and a half more years. F and I were friends during most of that time.

J and I broke up for the final time in May 2007. F and I dated for a few months, but as with all the other times, it was more of a rebound thing. Neither of us were looking for anything serious, so it ended and I moved on.  Until the ER incident, that is.  On July 11, 2010, I decided to give my bathroom a good scrubbing.  I attacked my dirty tub with Tilex and Soft Scrub, and the chemicals plus poor ventilation were a recipe for an asthma attack.  Unfortunately, my breathing episodes are pretty rare, so I haven't been officially diagnosed and I didn't have an inhaler.  I kept hoping it would resolve itself, which is usually the case, but by bedtime I was still wheezing.  I knew there was no way I could sleep, so I decided to take myself to the ER about 2 miles away.

F came online minutes before I left.  I told him I couldn't talk because I was leaving, and of course he wanted to know where I was going at 11pm on a Sunday night (I'm not that much of a partier haha).  I let him know the situation, and he offered to come drive me.  I declined, since I figured I could get there faster on the bus.  He then offered to meet me and take me home, so I said he could if he wanted. 

He beat me to the ER (I got a little lost), stayed with me the entire time, and took me to get my prescriptions at the 24-hour pharmacy.  When we got back to my apartment sometime around 1 or 2am, he came in and hung out with me for a while, even though he had just gotten back from a trip and was exhausted.  Nothing happened though, unless you count me using him as a foot warmer.

The next day, I was like, "Holy f-ing crap!  What was that?"  I realized that my feelings for him weren't dead after all.  The way he was there for me was amazing.  I had just spent the past few years with a guy who was great as long as I wasn't asking for something, but any time I needed support he wasn't available.  This was a wonderful change.

We talked a couple of days after the ER night, and we realized that we were both open to a real relationship.  I had to do some thinking & tying up loose ends with a couple of guys I was dating casually, so it took me a few weeks to get to a place where we could make it official.  I also was a bit resistant to the idea of a relationship, since I had been single for a while and liked my freedom and independence.  I came around though, like I knew I would, and we've been a couple since August 1.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Absence makes the heart grow fonder....?

Last night F and I went and saw the Kurt Cobain exhibit at a local museum with another couple.  F and the male half of the couple are planning a road trip later this month, for a week, all the way up through the northern parts of BC and possibly southern Alaska. 

Previously, I was pretty okay with F being gone for a week.  However, hearing the guys discuss their travel plans, and talking about being prepared for blizzards, bears, and breakdowns got me a little freaked out.  And then the internal struggle started.  Of course, F and I are both independent people.  We can do what we want (besides cheating, obviously).  I absolutely would not stop him from going on a trip with his friends.  I actually probably would enjoy some me time and some extra friends time while he was away.  I believe that it's good to miss your partner once in a while.  Absence makes the heart grow fonder.  It makes the reunions that much sweeter, and helps prevent taking each other for granted.

However, this weird--dare I say--worried, feeling reared its ugly head, especially when I realized that they would have limited cell service.  They were literally going into the middle of nowhere.  What if something happened?  What if they didn't come back safe and sound?  And then I realized that I might miss him more than I thought.  I actually like having him around.  We didn't see each other this week for 3 days in a row, and I definitely felt his absence.  It is such a strange sensation for me...usually there comes a point where I want the guy to leave so I can be by myself.  I usually get exhausted from long periods of being social, but not with F.  It's easy being around him.  I don't feel as drained, like I need to recharge.

The great thing about all this is that after I reluctantly opened up to him, he was kind and reassured me.  And he told me he notices when I'm not around (guyspeak for he misses me).  That made me feel better, just to talk about it.  I love how it's starting to feel like a real partnership.  With my non-committing ex, I was super into him, but also constantly filled with anxiety.  I was always trying to "read" him to see if he was going to let me in a little bit more.  With F, there's none of that garbage.  I feel I have someone who cares about me as much as I care about him, wants to be with me, and is going to be there, for both the good times and bad.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Happy monthversary to us!

Yesterday was our "monthversary."  When we were first together 10 years ago, I was all over that shit.  Now, not so much.  Actually, I forgot.  Whoops!  I'm a jerk.  Ok, not really, because it's kind of a jokey thing now, but it's funny that he had to remind me.  We didn't even spend it together since I had knitting last night.  I also find it humorous that I deliberately decided to make things official on August 1 so it would be easy to remember, and I've already forgotten.  I guess those little things aren't as important anymore, maybe because I'm not so desperate for validation of the relationship like I used to be.

For some reason, even though it's only been a month, I seem to keep bringing up the topic of marriage.  I can't stop talking about it, but definitely not in a My Fair Brady sort of way.  I'm not really a person who is anxious to get married.  It's just not one of my goals, especially since I'm pretty sure I don't want to have children.  So why do I keep bringing it up?  The last guy I was with wouldn't even call me his girlfriend after over 2 years together, so maybe I'm just reveling in how weird it is to hear someone say he'd be willing to marry me.  I just can't believe that someone would want to be with me forever.  Every time I bring it up it's like I'm trying on a new outfit, seeing how it looks in the mirror.  Does it look good on me?  Am I suited for marriage?  I'm like a junior high girl dressing in punk clothes, hoping that if I wear them long enough, eventually people won't accuse me of being a "poser."

Usually our conversations go something like this: "When I get married, I want it to be like blah blah blah," and F replies, "Okay."  And then sometimes I'll test him, asking him if I wanted to run to Vegas this weekend if he would.  Or we pick a date (has to be May, because that's halfway to our birthdays in October).  And then I backtrack and say, "But I'm never getting married!"  And he just laughs at me, because he knows I'll change my mind eventually (which I probably will). 

I know that I love him.  I have loved him either consciously or subconsciously for a decade.  But whether or not I'd be happy being married is debatable.  I've never even lived with a guy because I love living alone so much.  I'm not sure I'd be a good roomie, because sometimes I just need to get away from everyone.  And would we get tired of each other, or take each other for granted?  Would things get boring?  Sometimes it's hard to be attracted to someone if you smell their morning breath every day.  Would I get annoyed about stupid things like whose turn it is to take out the trash and forget why I'm so crazy about him?  Forever is a freaking long time when we're not even 30.  I was such a different person at 25 than I am now, so how can I be sure we'll be compatible when we're both graying and buying sports cars?

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Knit 2 together

Tonight I am looking forward to meeting up with my knitting group. I started the group in September 2007, so we are almost at our 3-year anniversary. The group has been steadily growing since I first organized it via Craigslist. Some of the early knit nights only had 3-4 show up, now we regularly get at least 8-10.

This group changed my life. I was pretty lonely after the end of a five and a half year relationship in May 2007. I was mostly just doing some dating and trying to hang onto what little friendships remained with some school people after we had gone different ways. Then, over the course of the next year or so, I met the five women who I now consider my closest friends.

I am thankful that I have such strong social support, so even when I go through the hard shit, I know I can get through it. For example, I got a lot of grief when they found out I took the bus to the ER for my asthma attack, because I should have called one of them for a ride. (Turns out F met me there so it all worked out, but it's still good to know they were around.) We are there for each other, helping with knitting and non-knitting problems. We even hang out outside the official knitting group.  And the great thing is that even though my boyfriend is always welcome, it is mostly something I do without him. It is my own thing, and I'm definitely not going to let my attendance slide just because I have a guy. It keeps me interesting, and I know that should anything happen to the relationship, I can handle it because I have my (knitting) friends.