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17 February 2014
Monday - February 17th and color me happy to see 70 degree weather and sunshine here in Bellawood! I'm even wearing a light weight cotton blouse and sandals instead of my usual turtleneck sweater and boots. After mopping the shop I propped the door open (to let the air clear from the smell of cleaners) and it was nice. Unsafe, but nice, LOL. But the plumber was here installing my new kitchen faucet so I had hopes he'd man-up and save me if needed but no peril so all is well.
I want to share a saying I heard the other day as it offered much 'food for thought' for me:
It is easier to act your way into a new way of thinking than to think your way into a new way of acting.
I liked that and it occurred to me the times I just 'try it' rather than overthinking it usually yield more positive results than negative; at least, I tried. The only person who never makes a mistake is the one who never tries anything new. I'll let you draw other conclusions on your own now.
Yesterday provided gorgeous weather as well - so wonderful that I abandoned my plans to 'go somewhere' to just stay and enjoy my home. Much puttering about in the back yard - filling the bird feeders and seeding the yard ((which is usually the same thing for those birds - they think it's an all you can eat buffet)) and pruning the rose bushes. Bring on the Spring, I am ready.
I'd been reflecting on delivering an unsolicited 'heart to heart' to Kaddy about how she was spreading her own life too thin to really enjoy any of it (Yes, I am full of unasked advice, hmmm) and decided to heed my own words before sharing. I remembered, "let she who is without dustbunny's cast the first stone' and realized I needed to clean up my own act first. While I am a complete OCD about everything in it's place and a place for everything' I do tend to ignore the fine layer of dust covering everything. So a good polishing and refreshing here, linens changed, etc.
However, though energy creates energy, I was still running on fumes from my Friday night kidnapping. Saturday with Grace began early and I finally understood the references Angel makes to how being sleep deprived leads to bad choices with her. All Things Food were mindful but everything else went to the dogs. I had a shopping binge that provided me an awareness afterward (when I discovered that night, at home, the on-sale non-returnable blouses were either the wrong size or unflattering) that I'd not lived anything else mindfully that day. Just 'snatch' and 'grab' behavior - like eating fast food when nothing else is 'available'. Another example was closing my eyes and dozing thru the live theater because I was so tired from the night before. That was money well wasted, no? So in the future I'll plan appropriately and remember to use my big mouth for more than 'the big cookie at the theater' - I'll use it to say 'No' to situations that side track me from giving attention to my life.
So while I had that 'go go go' feeling racing inside yesterday ... like a two year old without the afternoon nap ((a lesson learned I'll never forget!!)) ... I knew to keep 'going' was just asking for trouble so I ... yeah... darkened the house and took a nap. First in a loooooong time. And I still slept well last night, enhanced by modern chemistry yes, but nonetheless, I feel rested and capable of making better decisions today with All Things Food and other things Mindful.
All Things Food - Saturday was pretty good - stir fry shrimp for brunch, big cookie at the theater, bacon egg burrito for dinner then of course my ever so cherished oatmeal. I found a wonderful hazlenut amaretto peanut butter at Central Market; pretty darn tasty. Sunday, I didn't find myself actually 'hungry' until late afternoon and had salmon with asian vegetables (love the crunch of the carrots and chestnuts) with a cup of pasta, the oatmeal later in the evening then a weird but nonetheless fulfilled wanting of chili. Well, at least that's all gone now (canned chili). Won't be buying any more.
I know the 'advice' is to not eat after... 6pm, 8pm, whatever... I recall a joke a while back that went 'They say you're not supposed to eat within two hours of going to bed... I haven't slept for six weeks...' I know it would be better to get the nutrition in 'early' and burn it off but I seem to sleep better when I eat before bed and function better through the morning without breakfast - I GUESS or hope I'm just burning off the meal from the night before. I don't know .. it's just the mode I'm in right now. Perhaps if I could skip the nightly feeding I'd awaken with an appetite but I'll not sacrifice a decent sleep just to burn a few more calories. Right now, I'm going to keep status quo. Maybe Spring will bring with it more activity and ambition to exercise and stir up the early morning hunger and balance it all out by rewarding me with a 10lb weight loss and stellar sleep.
Here's hoping, aye? For now, I'm going to act like a mindful eater and eat my lunch of tuna with zuchinni relish and salsa. :-) I'm hungry. Hope the sun is shining in your world today. Thank you for stopping to visit me in mine.
Make Peace with Myself
15 February 2014
Saturday Morning - February 15th and if I had to rate my Galentine Evening on a scale of 1 to 10 I'd give it a 5 and that's only because there were no accidents or injuries. So let me begin by getting some of your likely summary reviews out of the way:
'Gee that Bella, such a whiney, rigid, impossible to please, inflexible, intolerably spoiled control freak witch.'
There, now you have to come up with something new. The rest is a total ranting vent to clear this bad juju out of my system so that I can go about my day today with better optimism.
Kaddy's invitation read, "Dinner, drinks and a movie". I even looked back on the communication in the emails for 'did I just miss something here?' but realize I did not because there was even an email about 'what type of food are you craving? Any ideas where you'd like to go?' to which I responded, "Definitely somewhere nice, possibly a place with fresh grilled seafood?' and was told to meet at her house at 5:00.
In MY stodgy old lady mind, the one who goes to BED at shortly after 8pm, I thought 'oh, okay, we meet 5:00; dinner will be somewhere around 5:30... probably out of there by 6:30 or so putting the movie at about 7:00 so yeah, get a cup of coffee and try not to yawn too openly because you won't be getting home until around 10pm. Suck it up Bells and step out of your routine a bit. This will be fun.'
Wrong. Oh. So. Wrong. I now remember WHY it's been over two years since I agreed to do anything with Kaddy. She is the most distracted, disorganized and frustrating nutcase in the world! We left her house at 5:30 ... to go pay her rent (where I sat in the car watching her chit chat with her landlord for thirty minutes) and then went to a dollar store (another half hour of her picking up things for a fund raiser today) and finally I asked 'Uhm, what time does the movie start?" because unlike my little one horse town where everything is within 5 minutes of each other there was a lot of city travel and mileage involved in between those two errands already and now it's 7:00 and we haven't even eaten yet!
"Ohhh? Okay... so .. where did you decide we were going to dinner?" (trying to still breath and be flexible and adventurous over the sound of my rumbling stomach)
"Oh, we're going to eat 'at' the movie."
Okay .. again, that's not my ideal thing but I have been to some of those 'movie restaurants akin to old dinner theater and it wasn't bad. Nice tables, padded swivel club chairs, waiters in uniforms serving food with style and it makes for a relaxing evening to then turn around and watch the movie. Cutty used to love the one I took him to when we first married. They allowed smoking in the theater then (in the balcony area) so he was even willing to go see a 'chick flick' if necessary because he'd just relax, order a pizza, and zone out while he had a beer or twelve.
Wrong again. Oh so wrong again. This theater was another forty five minute drive away and as I stifled repeated yawns while we sat waiting for her friends to meet us there I so regretted not 'driving' as I would have left her THERE to get a ride home, especially when I returned from the ladies room to learn 'oh, uhm, the movie doesn't start until 8:50...' And, if you're like me and haven't been to a movie theater in a while.. that's just when they seat. It's at least another half hour before the opening credits run after a zillion coming attractions reviews and advertisements.
No tables or club chairs - these were auditorium chairs with a swiveling plastic half table (like a college desk) in a theater that had obviously seen better days as my chair rocked ... not back and forth comfortably but side to side keeping my back and legs 'tense' all night and my 'table' (if you can call it that) was broken and tilted so I had to eat with one hand while the other tried to hold my dishes to keep them from sliding into my lap.
Dark theater, couldn't SEE my food except when there was a lighted scene on the screen ... I ordered a burger and fries as it was the safest thing I could imagine trying to maneuver one handed while holding onto my cup of hot coffee. Constant interruptions of the movie due to the waiters shoving food at me to be passed down the aisle to others as if we were at a baseball game. I was miserable with a capital M plus an I for irritated.
And the movie? I won't say much about the plot or give my review as to avoid a spoiler alert on that except to say ... unless you like watching Colin Ferrell cry and change his dialect about fifty times ... I'd wait for it to come on TV. Free. In fact, I'd advise trying to get someone to pay you to see the movie.
While everyone was trying to discuss 'what are you ordering' over the ear splitting volume of the coming attractions the topic of dessert came up and Kaddy said 'we'll go for that after the movie' and at that point I was 'the Mom' when I said 'Oh, NO, we will NOT.' I even did the pointed index finger wag to emphasize.
I was so 'not interested' in the movie I'd look around at the others in the theater and grew nauseous looking at row upon row of people sitting mesmerized, eyes on the screen as they just automatically brought food up to their mouths. Yes, I'm judging. This was the 'me' I used to be and 'don't' want to be again. And the 'me' I never was and 'never want to be' included watching these folks in the lobby sitting side by side as if coupled, dating, married or whatever BOTH sitting there ignoring one another while texting on their phones.
My phone is usually at the bottom of my handbag or in my back pocket. Yes, with reactions like this one I shall probably remain a social pariah with few people phoning me ever so no need to keep it handy to answer the latest text or follow the latest twitter of facebook because someone just burped or something. Watching these people who'd just traveled across highways and bi-ways to arrive at this location only to walk around with their phones lighted in their hands as if being led by a leash just turned my stomach.
What was the point? Where's the mindful living? Does even a relaxing social event like dinner AT the move have to be multitasked with the rest of your life? Do those shiny blinking colorful little rectangles have such a hold on you, your life and your leisure time they must be attended to at all times? Do you get why I don't have one now nor will avoid getting one with every fiber of strength in my body and soul?
So officially, I don't like movie theaters as a social event. It's dark, loud, there's no way to pause and give discussion to the scene just watched. It's like being held prisoner for two hours. It's like school, with unruly students and a substitute teacher. You don't have to pay attention but you can't leave. Sit & deal with it. I could possibly see the merits of it as an individual activity, one to which I go middle of the day when the crowd is less and I could just sit quietly in the center of the theater and really get absorbed into the movie. I cannot take this chaos. And I know I am the ONLY one in there because everyone else seemed quite content so I know it's my horrid, judging, snooty lacking, not theirs. I take responsibility that it's my short-fall.
And finally, as I've been a complete and utter witch in this journal, I'll go ahead and add this: I have not been to Kaddy's home in over 15 years and she has become a total slob. You know that standard empty 'please excuse the mess' we all give when visitors come because the kids sneakers are on the dining room table and they hang their jackets up on the floor... not that. I get that. I'm not so witchy that I criticize homes that are truly lived in. I'm talking about trash on the floor (gum wrappers, etc) and it's a shame because she has beautiful hardwood floors. Her home reeked from the smell of dishes everywhere with food dried on them (so, no, I'm not pointing out 'oh my, there were dishes in the sink) because they were everywhere, even on the floor in the hall.) Apparently her daughter has a bed wetting issue and my heart goes out to that because Blondie had one too growing up and I stripped those sheets daily. It was ... horrid. Turned my stomach.
I'd brought Mushy at her insistence. She was really trying to encourage me to spend the night but there was no way I could have done that additionally I was so frustrated at the evening running so much later than planned because I told her I have early plans today. I took Mushy's bed and water bowl with me with plans to put her in the laundry room because Kaddy has a beautiful little toy collie - looks like a little Lassie dog - but I've never let Mushy play with other dogs, especially unsupervised, and didn't want to worry about the two of them while we were gone. I had to ask Kaddy to let me sweep the laundry room... gum wrappers, scraps of paper, nails, loose change, etc... so that my little Hoover (my nickname for Mushy as she just runs around new places with her nose on the carpet trying to suck the foreign objects up --- she's a total challenge at Staples with all of those loose pieces of paper on the floor) wouldn't eat anything. That was the only room in that entire beautiful home beneath smelly filth that was clean.
Her car faired no better. I have a hypersensitive sense of smell and I was already sick at my stomach. I could feel my clothes absorbing it from the carseats and wasn't doing well. I just kept telling myself 'breath... relax... don't run... you can do this...' but it was just as bad as coming home from a bar with clothes reeking of cigarette smoke. My sense of smell is so strong that when we were sitting in the lobby waiting for the movie to ever freaking begin seating I said, 'I smell eggrolls...' and she said 'really?' Yeah, really. From the kitchen that was in another room down the hallway.
So what other ugly things can I say as I've been a complete and utter witch this morning? Meh. That's it. It's all out, I feel better. I don't like recognizing this ugly trait in me but it is there and while I shall work on being a little more flexible with plans I won't meet at her home until she cleans that place up. I will be very slow accepting ANY invitation from her ever again and if I do I will drive (and yes, I told her last night... 'had I driven I woulda left your butt there to get a ride home from Donna...) so likely the invites from her will be equally slow coming. I definitely know that 'going to the movies' won't be in my wheelhouse for socializing.
As I began - the rating of five is because there were no accidents or injuries. I think I did give much mindful attention to my evening, probably too mindful, but to borrow that well worn cliche, "it is what it is, was what it was, just won't be again if I have anything to do with it.'
Sorry for being so ugly. I'm gonna go dress now as Grace will be here in an hour. I feel better. Out with the bad; room for a good day now. Hope you have one as well.
Make Peace with Myself
14 February 2014
Friday - February 14th - Happy Valentines Day to All. I was sitting here thinking about when we were kids and celebrating today meant you went to the store and bought a box of cute little cards and dropped one each in the hand decorated lunch sacks hanging on the wall of the class room; sometimes you added one of those bags of sweet-tarts. But time passed and the little 'sweet tarts' weren't considered 'enough' - age and maturity seemed to demand more and the lunch sacks fell by the way replaced by huge red satin boxes of chocolates and long stemmed roses which eventually led to diamonds and dinners and wine, oh my.
Another excess much like All Things Food, no? I find myself doing similar things (right up to the point I voice 'STOP' out loud to myself in the kitchen.) I'll be thinking 'Hmm... craving cheese' but by the time I pull myself into the kitchen the image of cheese in my mind has expanded to 'yeah, I could add a heated flour tortilla and maybe some of that steak and make a burrito ... mmm some egg would be good with that too...' when all I really want is just a taste of cheese. Hence the 'STOP' and I just cut the cheese and move on. Wait.. that didn't come out right.. LOL.
So what is it we really want out of Valentine's Day? To know we're loved? Does the measure of the gift reinforce how much or like the simple sweet tarts are the big gifts just another piece of cheese gone wild?
Ahh... just messing around on my favorite playground.. the thoughts in my head. So I'll wrap up this rambling with: just because someone gives you a huge box of chocolate today as their gesture of love doesn't mean you need to eat the entire thing to prove you love them too. Share. With everyone. Tell the giver you're sharing their love. If they give you diamonds... share with me.
Spot on eating continues. SuitGuy brought me a bottle of wine yesterday. We seem to be on a marathon of gift exchanges. He brings me Starbucks; I give him homemade soup. He brings me cookies, I give him mini bottles of wine for he and his partner (because I don't keep large bottles here - they'd just go to waste). He brings me a large bottle of wine... yikes. My turn. I either need to reciprocate now or say 'uhm.. you win... now knock it off.' I may pick them up something from World Market tomorrow ... something non-food. I told him he was forbidden to bring me anymore crack-cookies. I may give him that six pack of beer from Stick - telling him he needs to experience a little red-neck. Yeah, that'll work.
Yoga last night - I enjoyed it although it really reinforced just how badly damaged my right knee is on top of how I need to find some exercises to stretch my leg and back muscles. But I knew that and am often surprised I can do any of that at all. I have arthritis of the spine and degenerative disc disease. While everyone else in the room is able to bend easily and press their head to the floor when sitting 'my' forehead still hovers about two feet above the floor. No worries, I'm giving it time. Just showing up is 99% of it, right?
And considering the instructor decided last night was the perfect night to teach us several 'couples' poses for sharing with our 'husbands' I think I did well indeed to smile and go through the moves with the coughing sneezing yoga student no one else wanted to partner. I laughed and told her I have the immune system of a cockroach; nothing gets to me. Let's hope I'm right.
But, I cannot ignore that being close to someone denying they were contagious didn't bother me so much as being 'touched'. Reflecting on that emotion during Savasana I realized how I rarely make physical contact at all anymore. The occasional handshake in the shop. Quick patted 'hug' when I can't duck them. I know it's indeed an important facet of health and am so grateful I have Ms. Mushy for warmth and comfort from someone I know loves me. Gosh I'm lost in my head today.
I am going to Kaddy's for Galentines Night. Dinner and a movie. I believe we are going to see Winter something. I was actually patting myself on the back for making the effort until SuitGuy mentioned how nervous he is in movie theaters anymore. Oh, yeah, forgot all about that ... and this on a day when some lonely soul like me just loses it .. ok, enough of that. If it happens, it happens.
Blondie hung out here several hours yesterday; she's still milking the 'I was in a car-wreck and need to stay home from work' excuse. No, I'm not horrid and uncaring; it was a slow speed low impact collision with .. a brick building... obviously a little spin out taking a turn. I'm not sure of her 'agenda' ((as I will always suspect she has one, sadly)) but I do think she's sent me Valentine flowers for today; I mentioned how I refused to go get my own 'this week' because I was boycotting the stores with their price gouging and her face turned red. So, we shall see. She has not once mentioned that I sent four bags of groceries to her home during her absence; I'll not mention it either. I'll consider flowers her 'thank you' and move on. It's less exhausting that way. Keep my guard up and go with the flow.
Speaking of flow I consider it ironic that I had yet another plumbing issue - now the kitchen faucet. So far, no leak, just no pressure. But for a year that set 'go with the flow' as it's buzz word.. well, I was hoping for an ocean cruise instead of mopping duty. It's all in the interpretation, no?
With that, I'll stop rambling, bid you all a good day and wander out and see what you're all up to this early morning. Take care and thank you for stopping to visit me.
Make Peace with Myself
13 February 2014
Thursday, February 13th. As we countdown to the 'Holiday of the Heart' I seem to feel a need to pour mine out. In other words, today's journal is longer than usual. Read, don't read, whatever you choose. I love you all and hope you're having a great day.
They say the only two things certain in life are death and taxes. I'm predicting my death will be easier than my taxes. You know it's complicated when the accountant says 'I'm training someone ... is it okay if I bring them over to show them what a real return looks like?' LOL. I think that intern went back to her desk and logged onto Career Finder.
And if you were to Google images of the 'worlds dumbest tax payer' today there would likely be a photo of me. If you recall on my previous journal I was praying for a nice healthy refund this year... well... color me DUH when it finally occurred to me (with the accountant's prompting, LOL) they cannot refund what they didn't GET. I'd not made any contributions at all last year while waiting for the resolution of my identify theft filing issue. So while I felt ever so 'prepared' that I took the business check book with me to be able to give the routing number for the refund (( I always forgot it previous years and had to make a second trip)) it came in quite handy to be able to write that nearly four figure check out to pay for the return.
Anyway, that's done. He filed it electronically so I'll wait to see if some other evil doer snagged my number again this year. If not, I'll renew making contributions quarterly to avoid the possible penalty for not prepaying blah blah .. I zone out at that point ... death and taxes. I'll probably die before I ever fully understand taxes. That's why I pay out the 'ear' for the return.
After that I went to Lowes and picked out a new faucet for the kitchen sink. This on top of an already emotional day. Doing things like that has just not been in my wheelhouse all these years. I won't play the 'girl' card as I know there are many women who are just as good carpenters as men - I'm just not one of them. I still reflect back to the time we were laying a new floor in the kitchen and although Cutty kept insisting the tiles needed to face the direction of the 'arrow' on the back I argued and wanted to do a pattern. He finally just 'let me go' and then sat and drank a beer watching me rip it all back up and go buy more tiles to replace them.
Last week I was trying to install a door barricade (after ripping out the one I paid a professional to do) and couldn't understand why the screw wouldn't go all the way into the wall. I do know enough that any good mechanic blames the tools so I thought it was my drill. I was wrong of course. Stick just turned the 'end' to the correct 'setting' and ::zrrrr... insert drill sound here::: away they went. Color me baffled - I thought it was just decoration - images of screws on a drill. No manual in the box when I finally found it in the store room - how was I supposed to know? And once again I'm living proof Angels do protect Fools.
I remember feeling so panicked when Cutty passed away; so lost. I know these are the type things that fed that uncertainty because it's a territory into which I didn't tread. This was his area, his realm of responsibility. Even when he grew too ill to do the work himself he would call 'the guy' and they would discuss it.
Otherwise, I continue to pray my gratitude throughout the day that the Angels are still all around me, protecting me from my own incompetence and supporting me to calmly go about doing the things I do need and know how to do. I have been trying to put this into words inside my head with no success so I'm going to try to write it here to find the conclusion.
It's all muddled about 'being alone' versus 'being independent' and where will my life take me from here. Along with a lifelong tendency to overeat, eat my emotions and feed my disorders, I have a tendency to be a hermit on a huge scale. It's a horrid self created cycle. I would be a workaholic with the constant road travel and long hours which resulted in Cutty (and friends) all finding other ways to amuse themselves in my absence. Often those plans continued even though I was home. In other words, their world didn't stop on a dime just because I'd made an appearance. So I'd sit, home, alone, feeling lonely, feeling rejected and turn to... more work... more trips out... fill the time to avoid feeling the pain. As noted in comments on my journal the other day - the invitations ceased because of my constant rejection of them due to being unavailable.
Though I'm far from ready 'now' I do occasionally think about someday having another person in my life - yet, how will I balance that relationship without losing myself again. Wait, I skipped something, this is too early, LOL. That's how my brain works.
Whenever I think about relationships, much like here where I so value your input, opinions, support, advice, sharing, caring and all of it, it seems the relationship of a 'couple' took on a different aspect in our marriage, one I didn't necessarily always like.
Yes, yes, yes... I loved Cutty. You know that from what I've written and shared many times. But I often found myself frustrated by the conversations of marriage where I felt like I was 'reporting to him' as if he were just another 'boss' in my life. There, I said it.
I sometimes look back on my days now and reflect, 'yup, taxes filed and done with more than 2 months to go on that deadline, bills paid, advertising checked, plumbing issue being addressed, customers coming in the shop, making money, I do show a profit at month end, called about this, checked on that,' and so on. All of this without Cutty hounding me multiple times a day or week or asking for a status update. He was like the 'grey hair' of tasks; the minute I confessed to completing 'one' he'd replace it with 'two more'. So my rebellion caused me to lag on getting anything he requested 'done' because it just meant 'more'.
Maybe it's because I worked professionally for so many years I felt frustrated at that part of our 'marital discussion'. I'm sure he needed assurances all was well especially as he brought his own baggage into the marriage - one of which he couldn't let go of was how his Mother was always hiding the bills, unpaid, from his Father as she spent the money elsewhere and there would always be a fight, utilities shut off, etc. I repeatedly reminded him 'Babe, it's been all these years and the lights are still on, food on the table, cars running, no repo man... trust me, will ya!" but he never seemed to let go. And for a woman who'd spent too many decades giving reports and status updates to corporate suits.. it just felt .. like more of the same without a paycheck.
In 'my' ideal world of 'our' marriage, I'd handle the household and paperwork tasks... he'd handle the physical property and maintenance and we'd just respect each other would be getting it done without the need to question.
I never said things like 'you did pick out a Moen faucet, didn't you? What?? Delta?? Are you nuts??' I just trusted that whatever he picked out was the best and right because he was very intelligent and knew his stuff. Why couldn't he do the same with me? If corporations threw huge piles of money for me to manage their businesses, why couldn't he trust I was doing just as stellar a job with our own finances?
So to realize 'Oh, yeah... I'm doing all those things I always did just with less pressure and hounding I'm getting them done sooner and the lack of discussion about it is making it so much easier' ..well, I guess I will probably have to do a lot of baggage discarding before ever considering another relationship myself.
When I was young my 'ideal husband' had many characteristics... of course, young girls start with the thought of a Prince Charming and then the compromises set in year after year. I blame Mary Richards. (Mary Tyler Moore).
Now, after spending over a decade as a caretaker I cannot ignore the even greater need for compromises considering I am what they refer to as 'a bit long in the tooth' as far as relationship material. I'm so relieved that you do get my sense of humor. With Cutty being older, he married me saying, 'I'll die and leave you a rich, young, widow.' Up until November I'd joke 'buddy... you're zero for three... we're NOT rich, I'm no longer young... and, well....' LOL.
And there were many days as the stressful wear and tear of being a caretaker, watching the evil energy of illness take him from me day by day while leaving me helpless to stop it, I wondered if there would be anything even LEFT of me when he finally did pass. Many times I wondered if I'd go first whenever I felt my heart pounding or subliminally destroyed my own health with poor eating choices leading to high cholesterol and blood sugar.
Mr. Suit-n-Tie Guy (the one who brought the cookie monster to my door) put a topic in front of me the other day I'd not considered. He'd come into the shop as I was finishing up a transaction with another customer and things got a little 'awkward' right there at the end. Suddenly Marty seem 'flustered' and I couldn't figure out what had happened. Had I rushed him? Made him feel 'we're done, get out!' so I asked STG 'what did I do?' and he answered 'Nothing... I think he was a little... ah... star struck?'
Ever obtuse me I laughed, 'Well, you do look nice in your suit and tie' and he laughed 'Not me, silly. You.' I shook my head and heard myself saying, 'Not hardly... he's been my customer for years and he's married with grandchil...' oh yeah, suddenly the image of the recent skeevy married guy came to mind. Oh yeah, that happens. But while I really don't think that was it with Marty ... STG said something that made me start to think about the future and how to be better prepared.
Of course, that led me to remind myself, 'Bella, don't try to plan the fun and adventure out of your future... just sit back and try to enjoy the ride, okay? Put your seatbelt on but let some of the control issues go.'
In all candor, I am not a 'beautiful woman'. I'm fair enough with myself that I'll say 'I wouldn't stop traffic but I wouldn't stop a clock... I'm just middle of the road and everyone thinks they know me because I just don't have any outstanding striking beautiful features.' STG shook his head ((and, for clarity here in case anyone is still reading and wonders why I'm not falling all over this sharp dressed man, he has a partner )) and said 'you have no idea. You've only had 'two' passes that you're aware of ... there have probably been others but you don't recognize them. Within the next six months you're going to see many more. You just wait.'
Of course, the woman in me who's spent the last ten years listening to Cutty tell me the 'same' but ONLY because of the business and money (not because of me being so darned alluring that men would be falling at my feet) bristled at the thought of a line of sleezy con artists coming after this 'old lady and her money.' Hence why I wouldn't know if someone were truly enamored with me unless they offered me a kidney or something. If the only asset I still have is connected to the bank, well, enter 'hermit mode'. Lock the door and I'll go find my kleenex box house shoes.
So now that I'm painted into this corner what will I do with my life? While you'd find my image under 'world's dumbest tax payers' you'd also find me under 'shrewd but realistic widow' because I'm well aware that of the reality of the compromised potential of a relationship with another man some day.
He'll have baggage of course - no way to get this old without it. But the fact is, if he is financially equal to me, he can afford a gal with better boobs and half my age. So how to proceed?
I began trying to put details to my potential 'Valentine'. Certainly not this year, maybe even not by next February, but what do I really want? As I've been reading about health & weight goals and the outlines to achieve them on others journals I thought I'd give it a try with this topic. As I was waiting for the accountant yesterday I started trying to draft my ideal mate to determine which traits on which I'd be flexible and those on which I'd not budge.
He must make me laugh more than he makes me cry.
Smarter than me but not feel the need to remind me of it daily.
Spontaneous with a sense of adventure.
Relative similar health so that we can walk equal thru the day.
Trustworthy and trusting.
Comfortable in jeans but willing to pull on the occasional suit.
Handy with tools or at least comfortable enough to coordinate 'the guy'.
Financially able to carry his own weight and not interested in comingling the bank accounts.
Must not have a butt smaller than mine.
Okay, it got a little silly there so I stopped writing because another taxpayer sat down in the waiting room and began talking to me. I put my pen down and made small talk wondering if the universe was answering my wish list just that quickly although I really didn't get a good look at his butt. It seemed interesting as he mentioned he'd just retired this year and was frustrated with the cold weather preventing him from being outside but then he mentioned his wife and I laughed internally thinking 'down Bella... stop letting STG's comments go to your head... not every man who talks to you is a potential suiter ...'
Point? I don't know. If you're still reading but feel lost in all of this, welcome to my club. I know if dating these days is anything like it was nearly three decades ago I'm not up for it. I recall even back then it felt like a job interview with cocktails. Speaking of cocktails, I did email Kaddy and ask if the invite to join the 'Galentine' day was still open; she said 'Yes! I'll email you the details tonight!' That was last night but they didn't arrive. I am not about to display pathetic and needy to ask again. If they don't arrive today, I'll just find another plan tomorrow.
And if not tomorrow, I'll find it another day. As one of the frames on my wall read, 'Life is a Journey and You Hold the Map.'
Bless you if you read all of this; bless you even if you didn't. I just appreciate you stopping by and leaving a comment. Thank you.
lost so far:
still to go:
Diet followed reasonably well
Make Peace with Myself
losing 0.2 lb a week
12 February 2014
Wednesday - February 12th - and the sun is shining in Bellawood today. Temperatures in the mid 40's and I hope we do see the mid 60's predicted for Saturday as I have a new Spring blouse and pair of sandals I'm hoping to be able to wear comfortably to the theater. This is the quarterly 'boutique, lunch & theater' outing with Grace. Crossing my fingers we both remain in good health - I am really looking forward to a great day.
Not so sun-shiny emotionally - I'm having a day that began with tears thinking about Cutty. It's still lingering despite my best grin & bear it smile and as I told Stick when he dropped by earlier to visit, 'If you make me cry I'm gonna punch you in the arm!' I was reflecting how those last two days of his life I felt, I knew, it was coming but I couldn't bring myself to voice 'goodbye' out loud. I just didn't want to admit it. I kept expecting him to rally once again.
As for the 'most romantic day of the year' now counting down to less than 48 hours away: no plans. Work, maybe a pedicure. Kaddy has asked me to join her and another pathetic lonely friend of hers (lol) for dinner and drinks Friday night. Maybe I 'should' accept. I'll email her and see if the offer is still open.
I'm beginning to think ... I need a vacation. A real one. Not a 'couple of days off because it's a holiday' or 'taking this week off to process my husband's death' but a real honest to goodness close the store, turn off the phones and just take a few mini trips around to blow off some dust vacation. I'm going to work on that - have a plan, an agenda, otherwise I'd just go flop on the hotel bed somewhere and I can do that 'here'. I'm thinking maybe some day trips into the City for a museum or two; maybe even a night at the ballet or opera with an overnight at one of those fancy hotels. Things I've never done but realize it's necessary to get me out of this rut of 'oh, waah, I don't want to drive all the way to There because it's 45 minutes one way ...' type thinking. But I also know I'm also still processing grief and running away right now isn't the answer. I may need my first 'outing' to begin with that grief counseling group I so continue to avoid.
Cutty was the Captain of Spontaneity when it came to traveling. Within the first month we were married I learned to keep a 'go bag' packed in the trunk at all times that included jeans, dress slacks and an evening dress as there was no telling where we'd end up. Something as simple as asking me if I wanted to go with him to get a pack of cigarettes would find us eight hours away and me trying to find a K-Mart open at 2am because I hopped in the car without shoes. I used to joke he was either just that wild or really bad at directions. But over the years his illness and the exhaustion left in it's wake drained the adventurism right out of us. That and age (maturity). No more winging it. No more driving to San Diego with four bald tires and $50 in cash. Age is the killer of stupid youthful behavior, isn't it?
So the annual Lab work results are in: 'really good - even improved over last year'. That was the medical review from the Doc - who by coincidence came into my shop to do business with me today. I wanted to give her a magazine and ask her to wait and could have started by returning the National Geographic I brought home from her office on Monday. My cholesterol is even lower than previous testing a year ago and I consider that quite interesting as I really indulged my love of real butter this past year. All those years of avoiding it for the sake of cholesterol... bleh!
I did not make it to Yoga last night - I was so cold I ached all over and the thought of crossing the threshold into even more cold was too much to bear. So I cooked a couple of filet mignons (one for me, one for Ms. Mushy) and chopped mine as well as a hot baked potato on top of a a cold tomato & pepper salad tossed with balsamic vinegar. I'd not eaten all day so it was delicious. Later I had some oatmeal and the last leftover flakey biscuit after soaking in a hot bath. I slept pretty well last night.
Soaking in the tub I reflected on this Winter and the weather; it seems to be lasting forever although today reminded me we'd had temperatures warm enough to grill outside just a couple of weeks ago. Last night though I stood in the doorway watching Mushy potty and looked at my sad pathetic little yard and cringed as I remember the beautiful green vines and flowers of the Summer. I reminded myself 'they'll come back.' But I wondered what it would have been like to be processing all this grief during warmer temperatures. Would I still feel as cold and empty or would the weather at least help me wade through all of this a little easier? Would I feel less 'knotted up' to be relaxing out on the deck instead of huddled in a tub? I laughed at Cutty and chastised him for not passing at more weather friendly time. But I know, pain is pain. This summer will trigger sad memories too; probably even moreso when his hummingbirds return to feed.
What else is going on here? Seems the kitchen faucet needs to be replaced so I'll go to Lowes to pick one out for the plumber to install after I file my 2013 income taxes tonight (if it doesn't take too much out of me). Here's hoping for a healthy refund and I not fall victim to identity theft again this year, aye?
Crazy busy day starting with Mushy riding to the pharmacy with me this morning then browsing the shelves at Staples. I remember when I worked in the corporate world the monthly Office Depot catalog was like Christmas always looking for the latest cool gadgets. Seems a million years ago. Then we returned home and walked to the market to pick up fixings for chili but no chili meat so resorted to plan B: chicken soup. Blondie's husband stopped by to tell me the reason they were home today is because she wrecked her car last night. I won't even TRY to understand how she was driving so fast she lost control of her car on a corner less than half a block from her home; that must have been SOME wheel spinning. She crunched up the front of her car and knocked bricks and plumbing out of the building she hit. Can you say 'road rage'? Hmmm.
Thank you for stopping to visit with me. Your friendship, kindness and support are so valuable to me - better than a dozen white roses.
Make Peace with Myself
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