Monday, July 28, 2008

Standards too High?? Nah!!

I miss him. I miss him so much that it hurts. There is an ache in my chest that won't go away and seems to grow worse as the days pass. I feel like a part of my soul is missing. In 18 days we will see each other again. 18 days that seems like a lifetime to me now.

I can't even begin to explain my feelings for this man. He is the most incredible man I have ever known and I can't wait to start our life together. This is the man I want to make memories with, the man I want to raise my children with, the man I want to grow old with. And I finally found him...

Just like any other young girl, I used to fantasize about what I wanted in a man. He had to, of course, be attractive, smart and funny. But I always had specifics in mind as well. He needed to have a zest for life, a constant passion for the woman in his life, and just had to get me through and through. I wanted a soulmate. Some would say that I had set my standards too high and that finding someone that could meet all those specifications would prove impossible. And the more men I met, the more I began to believe that my soulmate did not exist.

I settled more than once and more than once, my heart was broken. It was devastating and the search was exhausting. I finally came to the conclusion that what I wanted from a man was unattainable. Giving up was my only option. But the universe has a funny way of working out because once I quit looking, he was so neatly placed on my doorstep. He is exactly everything that I always wanted in a man and so much more. He loves me with such passion, his attention to detail is impeccable and he lets it be known everyday that I am the woman for the rest of his life.

Moral of the story? Don't ever give up on what you want out of a relationship, no matter the nature. Your life and your needs are far too important to compromise. The sooner that you realize that giving up on what you truly want is not an option, the less heartbreaks that you will have to deal with. Don't let anyone in your life tell you that your standards are impossible for anyone to reach because there will always be someone out there for everyone.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Ahh...the Memories...

Today I took a small stroll down memory lane. I'm not a pack rat by any means, but I do keep the sentimental things close by. I tend to keep old letters, greeting cards, small ribbons, movie and concert ticket stubs. Some people may call it junk, but it's a symbol of my life before. These small pieces of nostalgia remind me of where I have been, the wonderful people I met along the way and the good times in my life. The also allow me to see how far I have come and where I may be headed.

In this day of technology, there doesn't seem to be much room for nostalgia. No one takes time to stop and remember anymore. Life is moving at such a rapid pace and everyday there is a new invention created to help you keep up. I am addicted to my cell phone. I can not leave the house without it! There have been times that I have been late to work because I forgot my phone at home, turned the car around and gone back to fetch it. And I know that I am not the only one! What did we do before this fabulous invention? How did I survive my teenage years without a cell phone?

Writing letters to keep up with the people in your life was as common as breathing when I was a kid. In elementary school, we learned what a pen-pal was and everyone had one. I recently asked my eight year old daughter if she knew what a pen-pal was. She had no clue! With the introduction of the world wide web, there is no need to contact someone else on the other side of the world to learn about their culture and way of life. You just Google it. Gotta love Google. The answer to everything.

I often wonder what this world will hold for my grandchildren. It saddens me that the need for human contact may be eliminated by that time. No need to hug someone. There is sure to be some kind of gadget for that.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

The only person responsible for your happiness is yourself. There could not be a truer statement. This world is full of people who blame their insecurities, lack of self-esteem and plain unhappiness on someone else. But when you point fingers, there are always four pointing back at you.I am responsible for my own happiness. I have to do what I need to do in order for me to live a fulfilled, nourished and productive life. Then why am I feeling such guilt about going after what makes me happy?

I have been given the opportunity to begin a new chapter in my life with the man I love who lives at least six states away. When the question was intially posed to me, I jumped immediately to yes. But the more I thought about what that would involve, I began to try and talk myself out of it. Usually, I can talk myself out of anything. And I mean anything. "It couldn't possible work; I have three children to think about; what would I do without my family so close?" I ran every scenario in my head and everytime, my fears and questions were washed away by the simple fact that because we love each other, it will work.

Now the guilt has set in. My children's well-being is my top priority. I would be moving my children from the only home they have ever known and away from the family that they have grown so close to. I worry that I am being selfish and putting myself and my needs before theirs. Will they grow to resent me and my decision to move them across the country away from all they're familiar with?

It comes down to the simple fact that if I do not take care of myself, I can't possibly take care of my children. Yes, my children are still young, but I need to take the leap and live my life so that I can be in a better state of mind to raise them to be the best people they can possibly be. Hopefully, they will look back and see that whatever choices I made in my life, I ultimately had them in mind.

I still run the scenarios of "what ifs" and each time I do, the guilt begins to lessen as my fears dissipate. No matter what a person does in their life that makes them happy, there will always be someone who is dissapointed. But I am learning that life is short and there are no second chances. Live life to the fullest and make your own happiness, whatever that may be.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Feeling of Love

A lot of people claim to have been in love before. But how do you know for sure that what is going on is in fact love? I've asked friends that fateful question and the only response I have ever heard is "You just know." That doesn't help a person who is looking for a more logical answer.

I've been on a mission lately to find a way to explaining what love is to someone who has never felt this tricky emotion. So far, the only thing that has happened is that I have fallen in love myself. I know what you're thinking, "How do you know it's love?" I just know.

We'll call him Baines and he's absolutely the most amazing man that I have ever known. The real catch is that I have know him for the past 15 years. Both of us attended the same middle school and may have even shared a class or two together. High school evidently followed and again, maybe a class or two. We even had mutual friends and attended some of the same functions. But never once did he make a move on me and truthfully, he was not even on the radar for me.

After graduation, both of us went our seperate ways. Baines' life led him to join the military and explore the world. He soon married and became the father of two children. I, like him, married and had children of my own, only on the other side of our beloved country. During this time, never an email was sent, a phone call made to the other person. We were merely living our own lives.

As our 10-year high school reunion rapidly approached, I could see my marriage crumbling before my very eyes. I saw the reunion as a much needed vacation from all the problems I had been dealing with. A month before leaving, I received an email from my old high school friend saying how he was so excited to see me and talk with me once again. I, too, was excited and could not wait to get out of this town.

I approached the bar and immediately felt nervous. Would everyone around me be able to see through my smiling mask to what lied beneath? A torn, lonely woman in a horrendous marriage? A stiff drink was much needed. As I stood waiting for the bartender, I noticed him. Baines was an exquisite site and he had me immediately. I approached him, said hello and wrapped my arms around his strong physique. My, how he had grown up! This was not the same boy I knew from 10 years ago. He was more masculine, stronger, more confident.

As the night wore on and the more drinks I consumed, I found myself looking for him through the crowd of alumni. Baines moved from one person to the next and soon I found him next to me as I sat with friends. His hand touched my knee and I could feel myself melting. What a warm feeling! He removed his hand almost immediately but it was long enough for his touch to be burned into my memory forever.

At the end of the evening, I made it a point to find Baines and say good night. He noticed me walking towards him, opened his arms and pulled me close to him. Then he said something that stuck with me, "If you weren't married, I'd kiss you." Unbeknownest to him, those words were the catalyst to end my miserable existence as someone's wife.

I left my hometown a few days later and began the journey to a new life almost immediately. After many lonely nights of crying myself to sleep, I left my husband. It was one of the hardest things for me to do with my children but I knew that we would all be happy in the long run. A short time later, I received an email from Baines just saying hello. None of my friends from my past knew about the end of my marriage, this was a welcomed coincidence.

Baines and I began to talk over the phone, through email and text. We began to learn more and more about each other. He told me of his divorce from his wife and how he had grown from the shattered pieces of his marriage. He listened as I cried about the way I was wronged and how, at a time, I felt that the ruin was my fault. Our conversations grew longer and more frequent. We were able to discuss topics I never discussed with another man before.

I began to plan a trip to my hometown and he gradually became a big part of that planning. We grew excited to get to spend time with each other and learn more about what makes each other tick. Shortly afterwards, he stated that he was in deed falling for me. How could this be possible? This statement scared the both of us and I wasn't sure how to take it. From across the country, this man was falling for me?

The time had come for my trip and both of us were scared and excited at the same time. This would be the ultimate test. Would it be so awkward that the time together would be a nightmare or would we just click face to face? Thank God for the latter! We fell into each other's arms and never let go. We confessed our love for each other and began making future plans. We even spent a night at that fateful bar where this story starts.

Now comes the hard part. We are currently apart and missing each other everyday. The phone conversations have taken on new meaning and my love for Baines continue to grow day by day. He has asked me and my children to move in with him and I have never wanted something so much in my life. To get to spend everyday with the man I love is true bliss.

This feeling in my gut tells me that this is love. Believe me, it's not all roses and sunshine. I have days that I am so torn up by these feelings that I can barely breathe. But I know that tomorrow will be a new day; a new day to learn something about him, a new day to love him even more and a new day to feel that someone out there loves me just the same.

You ask how I know? There just is not a logical explanation. There isn't a word in the English language that can explain the emotions, the fear and the rollercoaster ride that love holds. I just know.

Who I am...

I'm almost 30 years old. I've always been ready for 30. Even as a teenager, I thought to myself "30 is going to be great!" My life would be set, complete and I would be on the right course. My career would be in full swing, my family life would be on track and I would have found my soulmate. Well, things don't always turn out quite as you planned.

Now I won't officially be 30 for about seven more months. Let's get that straight right now. Still in my twenties. Ah, the Twenties. A decade of screwing things up and, hopefully, learning from them. I started off right. At the age of 19, I met a man who was great. He promised to love me eternally and take care of me for the rest of my life. We were engaged in a few shorts months and at the tender age of 20, I was a married woman. Not nine months later, we welcomed our first daughter into our lives.

My 21st birthday was spent breastfeeding a 3-month old. While all other people spent that long awaited age drinking it up, I was tending to my newborn. I didn't mind because the man I loved was by my side. Two years later, a daughter followed and a little more than a year later, a son. I felt so lucky and loved my children more than life itself.

Things started to take a noisedive around 24. I left a job that I dearly loved to take care of our three children and was promised that everything would be alright. For two years, with only one income, our finances were dwindling. What was happening, I couldn't understand. Money was missing and my beloved had all the right answers. I was told again, "I will take care of you and things will be okay." I went back to work.

At the age of 28, I was a homeowner for the first time. I was so excited!! It was by no means my dream house, but I realized that you have to start somewhere. I began to busy myself by working on making our house a home. I wanted my family to be comfortable and safe in our home and feel love everytime they passed through the front door. I wanted my friends to feel warmth and caring with every visit. Then, the letter came. We were losing our home. Again, I was told, "I will take care of you and things will be okay." Our house was sold at auction and we had to leave.

Then, shortly after reaching the age of 29, I wised up. I picked myself up off the floor, took my children and left that man who lied to me for 10 long years. It was the best decision I ever made in my Twenties. It wasn't easy but after being alone in every way that you could possibly imagine, I knew that I needed and deserved a life far better than the one I was living. Now, I am working on getting my life in order. Living my life in the Thirties will be better. It's got to be!