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Posts Tagged ‘committment’

I Just Kept Writing

Is it uncool to admit that one is looking for love? The FWB thing is something that I’m simply not attracted to. Is it taboo to be actively seeking out someone who has taken care of themselves?  Have all the clichés been written out too many times to have meaning anymore? Going for walks on the beach, sitting by the fire with a book, watching my favorite movie, jeans to a little black dress, snuggling on a coach all seem unnecessarily mandatory when ads are posted and get glossed over quickly.

What happened to the stomach-tightening thrill of a second date with someone who actually matters and is elevated beyond a time-filler? The anticipation of perhaps touching hands over a coffee and a smile that, surprisingly to you, and unknown to her, gently warms the thin, brittle frost that has chilled your heart? The nervous preparation before seeing someone for a second time that includes taking a much too long shower, spending twenty rewarding minutes achieving a close and careful shave, taking out the barely used ironing board and remembering how to smooth out wrinkled clothes, going to the mirror more times than you can last remember to see if everything fits and matches, tentatively splashing on an expensive and stylish cologne, and inhaling deeply many, many times throughout the process to remain calm even as you feel your mind racing.

Is it unrealistic to seek out femininity? She that is comfortable with the graces of being a woman and does not at all feel the need to “fit in with the boys”? A woman who walks with dignity, confidence and agility, who speaks whole, articulate sentences sans curse words? A woman who loves herself first and knows that it is arguably the most attractive quality about herself? Is there a woman who is chic without bold pretentiousness and who has the realization that tastefully adorning her physique is among the strongest and most alluring of all items in the arsenal of love that she possesses? A woman who can remain distinguished even as she’s engaged in playful flirting, is there one who can claim that title?

There is not one among us who can successfully argue that they are a shining diamond. We have all done things that we are not smirking about anymore, we have all said things that have caused us shame in the aftermath, we have all been mired in wrenching heartbreak and we have all spent mandatory time and effort in a relationship that has long ago lived out its usefulness. But, are there among us, some that have taken the time, perhaps over a period of months or years, to meditate over our mistakes and who have consciously made the diamond solid decision that it is not the person we were meant to be and whatever the consequences, or the temptations, to never, ever, even for a momentary breath, allow ourselves to slide backward and downward to that disgraceful plateau? Is there no greater gift to humbly offer someone than the gift of unwavering respect?

Is there room in our heart for a relationship that doesn’t include ‘the fairy tale’? Is there a workable crevice somewhere in our soul that staunchly will not include a checklist of absolute must-have’s this time around? Are we committed enough to hope for symbiosis instead of doggedly holding on to the tenant that we are not going ‘to settle’? Is it mandatory that someone already have achieved all their dreams as a person, are they looked upon as stumblers, or are we willing to give of ourselves our vast, rich experiences and enjoy guiding another toward achieving that dream? Is there any joy left in a heart for the experience of joining as one in the hope of attaining a new, adjusted and common goal? Is there passion enough remaining in our thoughts that no list, banal phrase or ragged and misplaced sense of entitlement could overwhelm the ravenous hunger of brilliant belonging?

Is it impossible for a man to admit that he has made fantastic mistakes? Is it conceivable for a man to admit in conversation that the thought of endlessly dating in a stuttering stream of misguided relationships has made him not less, but more lonely? Can a man have a greater sense of being unfulfilled after the empty parade than to decide to be alone? Can a man adore without smothering, express tender vulnerability while retaining masculinity, admit acceptance of others without lowering standards and expectations and remain committed to only one while continuing to be independent? Is there a man who believes through painful lessons learned that no matter the cost, the penultimate prize is the person who will help brave darkened discourse, tumultuous events that are set into whimsical place, and haphazardly skewed ancillary views?

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Tenacious Me (finale)

So far, I’ve for all practical purposes lost the ability to use my LG Chocolate Touch phone that was only ten months old, taken said phone to the local Verizon store only to be ignored and left waiting for a supervisor that took ten full minutes before she showed up and told me she couldn’t help me, watched from my car as the store employees peered at me from their window perch, called Customer Service and talked to ‘Ed’, was forced to tell my full-length story for the fourth time and was left with the information that all I could do was ‘grin and bear it’ by reverting back to my old phone .

I don’t do well with ‘grin and bear it’ when it comes to giving my hard-earned cash to corporations for the priviledge of using one of their products! I’m determined that they be the ones to ‘grin and bear it’ if they have any intentions of keeping my business.

After I came home, I was still seething from the very bad customer service experience I received at the Verizon store, and although I now had a work-around that allowed me to use an old cell phone, I was more than dissatisfied with looking at the husk of my LG Touch. I was determined to receive satisfaction!

I went to the Verizon online site and signed on to my account. I must have spent close to ten minutes looking for the customer service number! Do they intentionally hide it? I think that they might because right around the ten minute mark, a box popped up with a message asking if I would like to chat with a Customer Service representative. I thought “Here we go again!”, but clicked to accept.

  • A moment later ‘Emma’ wrote a line that said something similar to “I’ll be with you in a moment”.
  • Almost a full five minutes of waiting passed before  I wrote ‘Hello?’
  • A minute later a line appeared that said something similar to “I’ll be with you in a moment”.
  • Almost another full five minutes later I wrote ‘Hello?’
  • A minute later a line appeared that said something similar to “I’ll be with you in a moment”. I was about to go through the proverbial roof.
  • I wrote and asked if there was an issue with my account that she had been looking up or if she was on multiple calls at once or what the issue was that caused her to take so very long to at least acknowledge me.
  • A minute later a line appeared that said something similar to “I’ll be with you in a moment”.

At that moment, I found the 800 Customer Service number and dialed it. I had to go through the keypad maze of selections but eventually found my way to ‘Paul’ – a real live Customer Service representative! I immediately clicked ‘Close’ on the so-called conversation I had been having with Emma.

  • I again trotted out my lengthy story – leaving out no detail at all – he got the whole saga
  • I added to the story mye Verizon store experience
  • I added in the work-around of having to use my old phone
  • I added in the online chat with Emma from Customer Service
  • I added in that I’m about to go T-Mobile on them and I’m not sure if he would be able to help me at all!

I must have taken a full 7-10 minutes of ranting (politely, but very firmly, mind you) about how badly Verizon had treated me and because of it how I would buy out my contract, spread the word to everybody at my place of business and to my friends of how poorly I had been treated and how Customer Service was used in name only.

Paul calmly took down each and every word. He took names, he took locations and he took times. He told me that he was there to fix my issue and keep me as a Verizon customer – no matter what he had to do.

Turns out that Paul was as tenatious as I was.

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Controlling the Gnawing

It’s been more than difficult.

It’s far too easy, and whimsical, for myself or anyone else to earnestly say “Good for you! I know you can do it!”, without realizing the accompanying throbbing anguish.

Tuesday should have been, but was not, the most trying day. You hear over and over that the first day is when the most panic is felt, and with it comes the likelihood of yielding to the snap judgment decision, despite all sane reasoning, to not even begin the process. Apparently, most who try only last a few hours during the first day. I intentionally forced myself to be busy. Busy I was – an all kinetic busy, mixed with a self-assured, false sense of Zen inner calm wrapped in a bravado attitude which boasted frequently that I’m better than the rest. Then came work where I mercifully could not leave. From there it was directly back to my building’s parking lot, and a quick and determined walk past the 24 hour 7-11 calling to me, into the building and the vertical zip ride to my apartment.

I first felt strong mental longing on Tuesday. My thoughts were a dilute mixture of steely logic while concentrating on the task directly at hand, and the icy juggernaut of thought that prodded and pinpointed my desires toward what I was denying myself.

Wednesday, Thursday and Friday each held their own tumultuous tempest that seemed pre-planned and coldly designed to annihilate any plebeian willpower reserves that I was accumulating which would allow myself the comfort of solid resolve. Each of those three days held its own devastating trebuchet in the guise of a postal letter, a voice mail and an email. It was as if a troika of Trojan Horses had been misguidedly welcomed inside my already timidly fortified gates, and out of their belly came such mean, significant pains and blows to my wavering goal that the combined fireballs felt as if they descended directly from within Pandora herself. Each of those three days saw my willpower insanely buckle and groan, but denying logic, held together.

I did not give way to the inhuman temptation.

Saturday and Sunday have now officially expired, and with them a crestfallen ego that has been scored much too often with the black steel wool of verbal abuse. But, though the vessel I ride is low in the water due to the cruel barrage of maltreatment on many fronts that has coincidentally coincided with the timing of my quest, the lust for my mission has amazingly remained intact.

I marvel at the money still in reserve, untouched by debit card ripples that until recently, had never seen the account so still and smooth.

Somehow, miraculously, thankfully, through a combination of self-denial, brazen luck and pretending that the desire was not there, I have not relented. At the end of each individual twenty-four hour interval, at the rounded-off anniversary hour, I plant another imagined victory flag.

I will not deny that I have held up my adult fingers and deftly imagined them holding one, and I admit that I have almost felt dizzy as I role-played the inhaling and exhaling, but on Monday, well, actually Monday late night into Tuesday early morning at about 12:30 AM, it will be exactly one week since I last smoked a cigarette.

Forgiving Myself

As I’ve ushered in the new year with big hopes and big promises to myself, even at this early juncture of 2011 I find that I’m falling short. Take yesterday for example.

It was a day off from work and I had a list to go through and checks to mark next to the completed tasks.  Well, I ended up sleeping late and never did get through the groggy head that followed after I woke up. I began to feel lazy. I did in fact look extensively online for a discounted price for my course that begins next week, but that was pretty much the end of being productive for the day. I glanced as the clock marked half-hours and then hours while they slipped away. I actually noticed more  after each of the movies I watched all day in succession on Netflix.

We had a big snowstorm in my part of the Northeast yesterday and the one time I made it outside of my apartment, was to dig myself out so that the apartment building plow could scrape the snow into mounds and reveal the parking spaces. But that was it for the day in terms of accomplishments – movies and snow removal.

I’ve heard for most of my life, and also to my amazement and astonishment here in the comments section, that I’m too hard on myself. As to that, I’ve always felt that could have, and should be doing more.

As we all know, staying focused and motivated is a job in itself, and it’s a job that I’ve constantly found particularly difficult to stay on top of. It can be a dangerous line that separates a ‘down day to recharge‘ and a day of slothfulness. And it’s a slippery slope and a habit hard to break that would rationalize being just plain lazy as a need to slow down a bit.

But now, maybe, I’m finally learning the lesson. As I woke up this morning full of zeal and passion – albeit due to deadlines of differing needs, I’m not chastising myself for yesterday’s lack of continued momentum. As long as the time off does not lead to a prolonged drought of robust spitfire, it’s alright to ease the self-imposed restrictions on time management that I’ve place myself into.

I forgive myself.

And, forgiving myself is just as rewarding, and helps ease my conscience, as fully as if I had asked, and received, forgiveness from someone else for easing my restrictions on them.

What about you? Do your self-imposed restrictions seem too rigid at times and do you tear yourself up when you feel you haven’t committed to, or fulfilled, those restrictions? Do you take scheduled, or unscheduled, time off?

Do you find it hard to forgive yourself? 

Managing Time

There’s such a lot going on each day in this past week, it has been difficult getting on and posting. Although I seem to have the time to read other posts almost daily!

Christmas turned out well. Christmas Eve the little angels fell asleep by 10:45 PM and by 11:15, Santa had written a reply note, filled the stockings and laid out the presents. True to form, my daughter was awake at 4:11 AM. The three of them woke me up at 6:00 AM sharp and it was such a delight to see all three of them in the bedroom doorway – even my oldest, with huge smiles chomping at the bit to get to the gifts.

It was a wonderful morning of tearing open paper, hugs and kisses and topped off with my cooking a full, heavy Christmas Morning breakfast. The ex came and took them at 11:00 AM and it was very sad for me. But, it was not like it was last year for me at all. This year, I had made a plan to work a shift later in the day. So, I kept busy, was around someone else who had to leave their family also and had a great talk with her. I found great comfort being there with her.

My new shift position has me coming home very late – close to midnight. But, once more, I’m grateful to have anything at all! In the beginning (heck, only last week) I was sitting in front of the tube and flipping while smoking butt after butt and then lying back and falling asleep on the couch. I’ll write a post about my nasty habit later.

My new approach when I get home is to sit for just a few moments while my PC boots up. When it’s up, I immediately sign on to Netflix and find where I left off the night before (in the middle of a movie or a documentary) and lie down in bed and watch what I can before I fall asleep. I then try to have my internal clock wake me up around 7:00 AM and get up. I want to have a rhythm going and not wake/sleep haphazardly.

I’ve taken to go online and read up on my class before it has even begun. I’ve found online tests that I can take for each chapter and can pinpoint some nuance that I don’t quite grasp and study harder. I am determined to be well prepared and ace the class. As far as financial aid, I find that I have to wait until next week to try to straighten out any money issues because naturally, they’re closed for the holidays. But I’ll get up there Monday and have a face to face to see what might be done. Worst case scenario is that I don’t get anything for now. However, I’ll bring my checkbook, arrange for a payment plan, make the first payment and keep applying like crazy – there has to be something that I qualify for and I’m confident that I’ll get something.

There’s something huge that’s been bothering me – reacquainted girlfriend. Something in my mind that’s been, again, telling me that she’s not the person I want to be with. Much as I try to stay fully committed, I have this dreadful feeling that I simply do not want to be with her. Or, maybe it’s that I’m not excited by her company? She’s certainly been a undenyable and indispensible for who constantly dispenses confidence and who cheers for me as I’ve mentioned many times before. As I stir up my reasoning I try to not dismiss it and stay my determined course with her, but try to pinpoint exactly what it is that wants me – sometimes at arm’s length, a shadow away from her. I’m feeling that a lot of it has to do with her constant, unalterable need to be close and closer to me physically. She perpetually needs long kisses, hard hugs and physical intimacy. Nothing at all wrong with that! But, it’s constant. And I just don’t want that every single moment of the time we’re together.

More, after the Break

Even the Smallest

As I get older I find that the smallest of gestures, or accomplishments, are more fulfilling than the grandest.

I’m on my quest to become everything that I haven’t lived up to in my life. While I constantly make additions to my ongoing list of things I must do, I’m finding that I take great relish in crossing them off one by one. I’ve a sense of joy and pride. I’m learning to not sulk in front of either the TV, or PC or anything else that I have done in the past in order to fill myself with defeat and ennui. I instead am forcing myself to consult my checklist and find something to cross off.

I’ve been in an orientation at a building that will only hire me per diem and Friday was my first day on the actual floor. I’ve been greatly disappointed with the environment and with the staff that seem to all be in their own distant world – nary a ‘hello’ or an acknowledgement that a new person is there. I went to get my first check after the shift and was surprised that we only get paid every two weeks! I wasn’t told that. I then took the opportunity to inquire what my pay rate was. It was looked up and relayed to me. I was almost floored at how little it was! Granted, I should have asked on day one, but in my field even at my level, per diem gets compensated very well. I was stunned to note the difference between what I’m making during orientation and what my pay was at my very first job in my new career! However, on the other hand, in an effort to remain positive and be thankful for what I have, I’m looking at it as it is better to have something than to have nothing.

So, for that I am grateful and have the attitude that it’s not forever, and something else much better will come my way soon!

I’ve called school and told them my situation with being out of work and asked if there is any way to receive any type of financial aid – short of a loan, to help me with this semester’s bill. They were happy to help (the lady on the line even called me ‘honey’ and told me not to worry which almost made me well up a little – I’m so grateful for individualized attention) and have sent me a form to fill out showing my change in income.

So, I’m hoping that I can get even a little something so I can live and still attend school.

More, after the Break

The Only One Holding Me Back …

… is me.

I heard that on of all things, a TV show the other night and it will not let go of my mind.

You know, I’ve read most likely dozens of popular self-help books over the years and they all seem to melt into one or two globs of true wisdom:

  1. Get off your ass in one form or another
  2. Make it happen, no one else will

So, guess what? I’ve been formulating and developing a new attitude these last few days.

I’ve had my required grieving period and I’m all out of tears. I’ve spouted to anyone that would listen and I’ve nothing new to add. I’ve talked and imprinted onto myself what a lousy situation I’m in and nothing’s changed. And you know, after hearing from others (and myself) that ‘things happen for a reason’, why can’t I reinvent myself?

Really, why not?

So, dangerously out in uncharted territory, I’m taking wresting back control of my will, swearing at my lost opportunities and shouting out that I can forge into an area that I’ve previously underutilized – my own determination to make things happen.

Focus areas that I’ve found are most important to me:

More, after the Break

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