January 2008

When my month was over and I moved back into the house I shared with Dexter, we talked – and both agreed when wanted to make our relationship work. That lasted about three days when I realized I wasn’t supposed to be with Dexter. I had outgrown our relationship. And I decided to it was time to move on and move out.

The day I moved out, five of my best friends showed up along with my parents to help me. The wagons literally circled. And since I didn’t have a place to live, a friend who I had known less than a year gave me her condo and moved in with her boyfriend while I looked for a place. Being on my own those first few months wasn’t easy. It was like detox. I slept on the couch for three months just so I could have the feeling of the couch on my back. When you’ve fallen asleep for three years being spooned every night, a bed all to yourself can feel vacuous. Then when my friend and her boyfriend broke up and she needed to move back into the condo, I moved from friend to friend’s house, benefiting from the hospitality of those who generously extended it to me.

I started creating the life I wanted. And I stopped worrying about what anyone else thought. I stopped getting caught up in myself. What I didn’t like about my life I changed. Anytime I got a little down, I found someone who needed my help. I don’t really get down very much anymore.

Nothing in life is free. You have to earn it. And in order to earn, you have to be willing to receive nothing in return. And be content with that. It’s never about you and yet you have all the power.

Every challenge, every hardship has a purpose. It’s impossible to understand anything in the process of change – like trying to get your bearings in the middle of a cyclone. But if you’re constantly embracing change, doing those things that scare the shit out of you or make you uncomfortable, it helps to have faith and knowledge in something greater than you can possibly conceive.

So here’s to the next chapter. It scares the shit out of me.


The day I met you, when I first came onto the project, was the day after I gave back my engagement ring – a thoroughly not fun time in my life. And I thought, “Who is this guy?” – who dresses funny and has a laid-back resolve that seems atypical in city where bravado runs deep. And there you were, able to get in front of a group with such insouciance and speak with the nuance of a maestro or a prophet. You’re almost a walking contradiction. How can you have so much confidence, and yet be so gentle and at times embrace your emotions like you do but then not express them?

Most times you don’t make sense to me – your logic seems to flip mine upside down. But that’s what I love about you. And for some reason, I feel like whatever you need, I need to help.

So thanks for inspiring me. Whenever I fear doing something, I do it – because a while back I made a pack with myself that every time I feel fear, I have to do it. And it started one day back in the lab when you told me “you just gotta get up there and do it.”

In the purest sense of the word love – I love you. I don’t expect anything from you, except for you to be you. Black socks at the gym, and funny hats, and say what you feel when you feel it and not know what a scallop is but know that if you wanted to, you could lead a nation. The sun does shine out of your ass, but I’ll be sure to turn you upside down so it shines on the rest of the world.

PS – Notice it was a “Glorious #1 Bestseller“?

repent (verb):
  1. To feel remorse, contrition, or self-reproach for what one has done or failed to do
  2. To feel such regret for past conduct as to change one’s mind regarding it
  3. To make a change for the better as a result of remorse or contrition for one’s sins

First rule of repentance: Have true remorse

Have an understanding that we have done something wrong and we regret having done it

Second rule: Have certainty

Out of true remorse, we gain power to search our hearts until we can say with absolute certainty we will not choose to repeat the act

Third rule: Face the opportunity for negativity again

And make a different choice

Dear Scorpio:

    You don’t respect me. If you did, we wouldn’t be here. You are my superior. You are in a position to advance or derail my career. Right now, you’re derailing it. You knew what you were doing from the very moment you propositioned me to join the team. If you respected me, you would support me in my position, but now I realize that when you propositioned me, you weren’t thinking about me in terms of my professional capabilities. I’m not sure what you want from me. But I know that every move you’ve made is to advance your agenda. The funny thing is, I thought I respected you. But I don’t. Because I don’t respect myself right now. A year ago, I made a list of things I wanted in partner and what I wanted in my life. Here are the lists:

I need my partner to:

  • listen
  • respect me
  • be compassionate and passionate
  • have an open mind
  • stimulate my intellectual curiosity and challenge me
  • find humor in life
  • be assertive
  • live his life with integrity

I need to:

  • Live my life with integrity
  • Pursue calm and avoid chaos
  • Refrain from getting anxious and reacting to things that are out of my control
  • Keep perspective on the things I can influence
  • Act with others’ interest in mind
  • Seek to help and positively influence others
  • Avoid criticism and judgment
  • Be diligent
  • Avoid laziness and putting things off/inaction
  • Keep stock of priorities
  • Refrain from seeing boundaries and limitations
  • Quiet the ego
  • Act with love and compassion
  • Question with good intent
  • Seek the truth

Right now, I’m failing miserably. The truth is, you are married and integrity is about being honest and there’s nothing honest about any of this. I’m attracted to you and sometimes it consumes me like a massive flame. But that’s just me reacting to and feeding a physical impulse. And when I come home at night, I don’t feel good about any of this. In fact, I get angry with myself. I deserve better. Don’t I deserve better? Obviously, I don’t. If I did, I wouldn’t be in this position.

So in order to get the relationship I want, I have to be everything I seek in a partner. And you are my test to see if I’ve actually changed. I am better than this.

Only one sperm will win the race. The rest will die.

PS – Women are most eager for sex during ovulation and immediately before the “shedding of the lining.”

During my one month relationship sabbatical, I batted around several questions: did Dexter love me? did I want to be married? was I afraid of commitment?

For the longest time, I believed I had a fear of commitment. But the thing is, when I know what I want, I commit to it. Wholeheartedly. With marriage, I’ve seen too much of what I don’t want. Too many people who settle into a routine, who focus on “stuff” and the accumulation of “stuff,” who stop making the effort, stop appreciating, stop taking risks, stop listening, stop making the other person a priority and by that I mean, become selfish and stop evolving as human beings. And this was what I realized – I don’t necessarily want the big house, with the big lifestyle, and the 2.2 kids in a nice suburban neighborhood with the same conversations with the same groups of people every third weekend of the month. I have no desire to commit to THAT. But me not embracing what I knew at the time to be of conventional relationships and marriages is not a fear of commitment. And it doesn’t mean I don’t want a relationship or marriage or a family.

The way I answered my question to marriage was by writing down what marriage meant to me and what I wanted in one – and when I looked at the list, I realized many items were absent from my relationship with Dexter and we were both to blame. The problem was, in order to have the marriage I wanted, I needed to change and Dexter needed to change and I couldn’t enter into a marriage expecting both of us to change.

Did Dexter love me? This question took me a little longer to answer than the others but I eventually realized that it didn’t matter. The question was: did I love Dexter? And my answer was yes and no. Based on what I understood love to be at the time, yes I did. But in reality no, because my understanding of love has changed.

I was selfish in my relationship. I didn’t love Dexter. I loved what Dexter provided me – emotionally and physically. I had my moments when I put aside my ego, but that wasn’t my natural state. And I’m not saying Dexter wasn’t selfish, because he was. But I can only change me.

Relationships are opportunities – to practice tolerance, sharing, and the absence of ego – which for me are the essence of god. And in my relationship with Dexter, I failed. Probably because I didn’t have god in my life. To me, god is love. For most people, myself included, just mentioning the word god causes discomfort. But replace the word god with love and all of a sudden, it’s a concept people can embrace.

indulge (verb):

  1. to give free rein to
  2. to take unrestrained pleasure in
  3. to yield to the desire of

When I just need to “get away” for a few days, especially when my life feels chaotic, I find myself in New York.

The script is always the same. I arrive in Manhattan, get in a cab and think, “I love New York. I love the energy of the city. DC is so mundane and ‘blah.’

Next is the path of indulgence: dining at expensive restaurants, consuming alcohol at every meal, shopping that goes hand-in-hand with the act of walking, working out in some high intensity or “nouveau” fashion, getting pampered at the salon/spa, dancing, partaking in various forms of art…anything my heart desires. And by day 3, I’m ready to leave.

New York is so sumptuous. So rich. So consuming. Like sex – especially “casual” sex. The first bite always feels like a little slice of heaven. But by day 3, I’m always ready to go home to the “stillness” of DC. Manhattan, like sex, is a distraction – and when I visit, I want to be distracted. But indulging in both the city and casual sex is not fulfilling. In fact, the path to fulfillment is not moving toward the things I’m most attracted to, but embracing those things which are difficult.

right (adj):

  1. righteous, upright
  2. being in accordance with what is just, good, or proper
  3. conforming to facts or truth
  4. correct
  5. suitable appropriate

Sometimes I hate doing the “right” thing. Sometimes it’s fun to do the not-right thing. In kindergarten, my parents were brought in for an “emergency conference” to address my disciplinary issues. At some point during the day I had decided I wanted ice cream and there was a Baskin Robbins within walking distance of the school. Our teacher had left the room, so I got up and began my journey. Some of the other children asked me where I was going and I told them, so the entire class followed me. Apparently we got cut off in the hallway outside the main office. I don’t remember this. Afterward, my parents explained to me why this was “wrong” but I wasn’t chastised because – hey, it wasn’t my fault the other kids followed me and who doesn’t like ice cream after lunch on a warm afternoon?

The right thing for me to do now is stop my charade with the Scorpio. But it’s so fun:(  He plays the game so well.  He is a mastermind. And powerful. I love the allure of power. And I love to be the favorite.  What Scorpio wants, Scorpio gets and he wants me. Isn’t it nice to be wanted?

How does one discern boundaries without walking up to them? But isn’t that a very reactionary statement? Didn’t I vow to stop creating chaos in my life with this behavior? Doesn’t becoming more enlightened mean not learning via mistakes but recognizing the consequences beforehand?

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