Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Valentine's Day: A Personal Love Story

Valentine's Day 2016 and 2017: A Personal Love Story

Romantic Candelit Dinner

Valentine’s Day. Single Awareness Day. Hallmark Card/Florist/Candy Maker Appreciation Day. The day has many names. People go out with their significant others, get married, get engaged, hang out with friends, go dancing, deliver gifts to workplaces. People tend to either love or hate this holiday.
I have been one of those that never really enjoyed it that much. I felt it was just another day that people happen to do romantic things on because it’s a holiday.  But the events of last Valentine’s Day, and all the days between then and today, something happened that I will continue to celebrate for many years to come.

Valentine’s Day 2016 I had set up a coffee date with someone I had “met” on a dating site. I wasn’t particularly excited about meeting him as I didn’t feel we had much in common, but I really wanted a date that day. Come Valentine’s Day, however, I had a guy messaging me that I was pretty excited about. Things we talked about led me to believe I had a lot in common with him (let’s just call him Mr. Sloth). He asked if I wanted to go get froyo. I knew I had that coffee date with the other guy, but I really wanted to break the date. So I made up some excuse to coffee guy and decided to go out with Mr. Sloth instead.

I felt bad that I had lied to coffee guy and broken an arranged date. I’ll never know how that date would have went. But the alternative happened to turn out to be one of the best decisions I’ve made thus far.

Mr. Sloth and I hit it off right away. We spent quite a few hours just talking about things. I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone I had so much in common with. We set up a date for the next weekend and became a couple soon afterward.

I was so happy. I had finally met a guy who I felt I went very well with. He had a healthy way of life, and he also had a healthy outlook on relationships, and had strong mental health. (He was very much the kind of person I wanted to be.) Without going into the reasons why, I broke it off with him after a few short months. Now, if you know me and my history, breaking off a relationship after a few months is something that has happened many a time before. But this breakup was different from many of the others because it was a healthy relationship.  It seemed to be the kind of relationship I had been looking for for years.

I was very sad that I broke up with him. And for months I regretted it and wondered if I made the wrong decision. I actually asked him to take me back and try again, but he refused for his own valid reasons. I was crushed and I took it very personally. After that, I felt horrible about myself, told that I didn’t deserve a healthy relationship. I did some things to try and sooth my pain- went back to some old habits of mine that reinforced this idea that I wasn’t good enough for real love.

I cannot tell you exactly when I began to change. But I worked through a lot of my issues, read books and watched videos about relationships and did relationship inventories. I quit dating. I quit drinking my problems away. I started to work out a lot more. Suddenly I was dealing with life in healthy ways. I was dealing with my issues in ways that I never knew I was strong enough to do. I wasn’t spending all my time and energy on thinking about men and romance. I began to recognize my patterns that led to my love addiction.  

Valentine’s Day 2016 I had hoped that I had finally met the guy who I’d eventually fall in love with and spend several years or more with.

That did not happen. What did happen was better than anything I could have imagined. I met an incredible friend who gave me strength to change my life.

Mr. Sloth of course did not change my life. But by his example and advice, I was able to figure out the tools I needed to change my life. Because I met him and learned from him, I know that my life will never be the same.

I love myself more now than I ever have. I treat myself better than I ever have. I forgive myself for my faults and my mistakes more easily. For the first time since I was a teenager, I am very happy being single. I feel free. I feel free to be myself. I find that I really enjoy my own company now. I enjoy hanging out with people as friends. I love having ample time to go out and do a variety of things in my life. I have never felt better.

Maybe one day I will find that person I will want to spend years or the rest of my life with. But for now, I am overjoyed to just be me. Maybe some of us are content to spend our lives without a romantic partner. I might just be one of these people.

No matter what happens in any future love life I have, I know one thing for certain. I love myself. I love my life. Valentine’s Day 2016 forever changed me. Valentine’s Day 2017 was a celebration of me and the most incredible year of growth I’ve had. I know my life will never be the same.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

1200 Calories

There is a great group I belong to on Facebook. Its called Jillian Michael's Workout Junkies. The group is filled with [mostly] women. I LOVE the group and the women in it. They are so motivational. I have started running and doing Jillian Michaels' workouts after joining this group because I love the results the women are showing.

Many of the posts on the group are saying that you should never lower your calories below 1200, and that it impedes weight loss. This is a huge problem for me...

I don't know if you know about my past eating issues/disorder, but about three years ago, I got down to 100 pounds. Getting down to 100 pounds was achieved by me eating 200-800 calories a day, with about one binge day a week. I also exercised as much as I could.

When I read these comments that you shouldn't lower your calories below 1200, my immediate reaction is to say, "they don't know what they are talking about!" The only way I seemed to lose weight was to eat a very small amount of calories. A pro-ana website I belong to has a ton of girls who lose weight by starving or near starvation diets. Hundreds of anorexics can't be wrong, right?

Yes, this is the type of thinking I've had for pretty much the last 15 years.

But over the past few days, something has clicked. I have looked back over the past few weeks, and saw my calorie trackers and workout results. I can say that my best runs/workout sessions are mornings after I ate 1200 or more calories.  My best workouts have happened following the days that I ate 1200 or more calories. I am slightly beginning to see that "food is fuel". I need to eat an adequate amount of calories to ensure a good workout and a change in body results.

I hope that by changing my habits and feelings about food, and continuing to exercise and run, I will get in the best shape of my life. I want to be healthy. I want to prevent becoming obese/overweight in my later life. When I got skinny by starving, I wasn't healthy. I was skinny, but squishy, not toned and fit.

I want to be toned and fit. I need to change my way of thinking to be focused on being fit and healthy, rather than just "getting skinny", I need to stop worrying about the number on a scale and worry instead about my overall health.

I am finally ready to fully leave my binging/starving/eating issues behind. I am ready for those 1200 calories. 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Let's Talk About Kids...

I think its time to write another post on my "childfree" status.

I am thinking about this, because I recently filled out my Year 6 questionnaire of the childfree study I'm participating in.

I discovered something when answering her questions, (as well as a few conversations I've had with past "love interests" of mine). When I am on my own, single, and not dating anyone, I am 100% CF-never want kids, no way, no how, uh-uh. Then, once I am dating someone, or thinking about dating someone, or considering dating them in the long-term, and if that person mentions anything about wanting kids, or having had wanted kids in the past, suddenly I'm all on board the baby train...

Not because I actually want a baby. I think its more that I think, "hmm, they aren't 100% CF, maybe the only way I can keep a relationship going is to talk about having kids".


After these relationships end, I always end up saying, "what was I thinking?! I don't want kids. Why did I even start thinking about that?"

I guess I am confused. But if my true self is the self that I am when I am alone, and its then that I am 100% childfree, then doesn't that mean I should be childfree all the time?

If anyone wants to "play" armchair psychology, what do you think's going on? :)

Sunday, August 23, 2015

My Yellow Umbrella Story

Who will be the one standing under this with me at the end of this post? 

One of my favorite TV shows of all time is How I Met Your Mother.

I love the comedy, the friendship between the characters, and mostly, the whole romance theme of the show. I loved watching Ted's search to find the love of his life. If you've watched the show, you know that there is a Yellow Umbrella that connects Ted to his future wife (the "mother" in the show's title). 

I have always wanted a yellow umbrella, and I started searching all over for one, without success. A good friend of mine knew I wanted one, so he bought it for me for my birthday. I was so happy about it, I broke our "no touching" rule to give him a hug. 

My friend was not a fan of the show at all, so he had no idea the meaning of the umbrella or why I wanted it so bad. And if you don't know the show, you probably wonder what my obsession with the umbrella is. 

For me, the Yellow Umbrella symbolizes the hope of "finding true love". I often looked at my Yellow Umbrella and fantasized about finding the perfect guy for me. It was all I could think about.

When I moved out to Texas, I was feeling pretty lonely, and I started thinking about my past. A lot of stuff happened between me and my friend who gave me the umbrella, and we both wondered if we had missed our chance at a long-term relationship between us. So we decided to test it out, see if any prior feelings were still there. Turns out, feelings were still there, but they were not enough to build a life on. Our lifestyles, circumstances, what we want out of life, our values, etc are way too out of sync.(which may be the case with all my prior relationships).

I wondered what would I do now? I finally have closure to all my romantic relationships of the past. Will I ever find the "love of my life"? Will I find "My Ted"?

As I flew back home to Texas, I had a lot of time to think and ponder about my life. I made a huge realization then. ALL of this "romance" and "love" stuff of the past four years have really been a distraction. I was so concerned with finding someone to love and build a life with, that I basically jumped from man to man. I thought that if I could just find the right guy for me, I'd be happy, and my life would fall in to place. 

If you've noticed, I've always seemed to have a boyfriend, or been married, etc. The times that I wasn't in a relationship, I was actively dating and searching for one. My adult life has been all about love and romance, that I've missed what I really need...

And that is to love ME. To discover MYSELF! How could I ever find the "right guy", if I have no clue who I really am, and what type of guy I really want? That's why none of my relationships have worked out, why they have been short, and why I'm always seeming to "date the wrong guys"-- because I have no idea who I AM! 

That all ends now. When I moved out to Texas, I promised myself that I wouldn't even try dating for at least a year while I discovered myself. I broke that promise for awhile. But now I feel I finally am serious about this. 

My Yellow Umbrella that once symbolized "the search for love", now symbolizes "the search for myself". Only when I find myself can I ever hope to find "true love". 

I'll be standing here on my own, discovering myself before I discover the partner who belongs under here with me.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

A New Life! (Proving my free spirit style)

I'm starting up the blog again...

In case you haven't heard, I am moving to Texas in one week. Texas was not my first choice of a place to escape Utah, but the circumstances are just right...

I have been wanting to move to a new place and see what type of life I can create for about five or more years now. I stayed in Utah to finish school.

Well, school is now done. I haven't found the job I want yet, and feel I won't find what I'm looking for around here. I find myself single again, and wary of being in any relationship in the near future. I have myself to figure out, which I have not allowed myself to do since I left home the first time at nineteen.

Texas is where I'm finding myself going. Partially for the job market, partially because I love heat, mostly because I have one brother living there already as well as his wife, so I won't be alone. And as a bonus, I already made a new friend who I feel is going to be one of my best friends ever.

Will I miss Utah? Sure. I will miss the mountains, the national parks close by. I will definitely miss my family and close friends.

This is my new adventure. I am so excited to see what is in store for me! Texas may not be my final destination, but I think its a good place to get a fresh start.

I feel this proves me as a free spirit, to get the gumption to up and move to a totally new place... just because I can.

I believe that by placing myself in a new environment, I will really find out who I am, and that I can make it.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Lost Love

Sometimes you unfortunately lose someone you loved.

Sometimes even more unfortunately you lose someone you loved who you realized never loved you the same way in the first place.

Putting energy into a relationship that never really was (even though there appeared to be something there) and then having it all the sudden crush down sucks. Its a blow that I don't wish on anyone.

I still think things could have worked out. But unfortunately, the other person doesn't feel the same. I think this is usually how it goes. One is willing to work, but the other isn't so things fall apart. I've been here several times before, but I've always been the other person.

Will it ever be worth it to try and fall in love again?  I still want to hold on hope that things will work out with him though I know they won't. But will this happen again with another man?

I am content with still being friends. I don't want to ever lose him from my life like I did before. But going from seeing a future to knowing there's not one is going to be difficult for quite awhile.

I hope Ted was right on HIMYM, "Sometimes things have to fall apart to make way for better things."

Right at this very moment though, I want to give up. I want to say love doesn't exist and I'll be alone for the rest of my life. I want to hate all men and never give my heart to another one for as long as I live.

But I know this is only a moment. One day I will get everything I want, need, and deserve. And it will be beautiful.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

The Ring

Today I let go of a certain ring... here is the story...

The ring was the final item connecting me to both of my ex-husbands. Its the last token I have to remind me of both of them.

Andy and I got back together about a year after our divorce. We went on a date and went to the mall after dinner. I mentioned while there I wanted to buy a yin/yang ring to replace one that I had lost. We went to Claire's and I found the particular ring. He bought it for me as a token of us getting back together. I wore it a long time even after we broke up, but then I stopped wearing it.

Then, one day, for some reason I put the ring back on and went to the Love Feast at the Utah Krishna Temple. It was the night that I met Mike. The ring was one of the first things he noticed about me. The very first thing he said to me was, "I like your ring." He always loved the ring and told me its what attracted him to me in the first place.

So, since the ring is connected to these two men, I know its time to leave it behind. I buried the ring in a park I rarely go to. I leave behind these men with this ring. I leave behind the memories of hurting them. I leave behind my own pain and my worry that I'll never be able to commit to a person again. Today is a brand new day. A day where I finally love and accept myself. I believe in love. I believe one day I will fall in love with the perfect man for me. I will no longer date men who are not right for me. I'd rather be alone forever than to be with the wrong man again.