It’s lonely behind the curtain

COMMERCIAL FIRST!

I am having my first Valentine’s Day show in Baltimore EVER next month on Thursday, February 14th! It’s going to feature a long of amazing live musical performances and ME of course, so please click the picture and/or the link for details!

erossalon

www.tulalove.com/theerossalon

And now, today’s news…

It is a little after 4 a.m. as I start to write this. He is asleep.

In my bed.

In my house.

This is unprecedented.

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I do not let people into my life like this. I never have. I have always felt I could not. I have lived a compartmentalized life all of my adult life. I had to. I was a single mom with kids to raise. Raising them meant protecting them from nonsense and insanity, no matter what the source was – and at times that meant protecting them from whatever bullshit their dads were putting down. I kept my children separate from the other aspects of my life – certainly from my social life, but my creative life as well. I rarely let strangers into my home when my children were present. It was how I kept the boundaries in place between my family and my responsibility to them as their mom, and the rest of me. Most people find it shocking when they discover I have two children, I am an excellent cook, and just generally domestically inclined. But these are things that are part of my at-home life, my in-home world that is never ever entered into with any regularity by anyone other than those who are a part of that world. And the fact that my son is autistic and does have some issues with socialization has also contributed to my compartmentalization tendencies.  Compartmentalizing my life made his struggles with his autism easier to manage. It was less stressful for him to not have to deal with a lot of excessive traffic in the house. My son’s autism was extremely challenging was he was young, and having structure, routine, and predictability in his life were crucial to him successfully managing his emotions. People coming and going frequently, especially strangers, and the noise they caused and the way they could disrupt his routines were a problem for him, and could cause him to act out and rage. I eliminated that problem so he could figure out how to handle his emotionality.autism

This meant my friends and loved ones never came to my home, nor did acquaintances, unless absolutely necessary. And I always made sure it was NEVER necessary. I did not entertain in my home.  This also has meant that no one is ever been close enough to me to see that side of me, my at-home side. This meant that there was always a part of me no one could access because it only occurred in my home. I never ever let men I was dating see me in my at-home setting with my kids when they were growing up, and all the men I dated were okay with that, with not being fully integrated into my life. No matter how close to me they were in every other respect, no matter how involved they were in every other aspect of my life, they didn’t see me in my home, managing my house, dealing with my son and my daughter and their respective dads, dealing with my mom and my extended family. Because of this, these men missed out on seeing an important part of me – but at the time, I felt it was what was best.


dysfunctional family shirt

But now he’s here. And he has kicked down this wall in my life.

He came into my home. Into my humble abode. He thought nothing of it. It never occurred to him that this part of me was off limits to him. He wanted to see me, the me that exists in East Baltimore, in a little rowhouse with my little, crazy, lovingly dysfunctional family. He saw where I sit and write. He saw where I lie down and watch television.  He met my autistic son and my daughter. He talked to my mom. He ate dinner with me in my home. He saw where I keep my sex shoes. He’s seen my junky closet, my disorganized files, the stack of books on my printer, and the ladder in my dining room that I can’t seem to manage to take back into the kitchen. And now, after having eaten the dinner I cooked for him in my kitchen and getting good and sleepy, he’s snoring in my bedroom, in my bed, as I sit here and write the blog of amazement.

He saw it all. And he still likes me. He really likes me.

This hasn’t been comfortable for me at all for me. It’s easy to talk shit about letting people in, letting them see the “real you”, feeling like you are worthy of being loved in spite of your bullshit, your messy bedroom, your toilet with the handle you got to jiggle to get it to flush, your cellulite, your crazy family or your limited funds. Its hard to actually do it, really let someone all the way in, to the core, to the crust, to the fucked up parts, the parts that you know are fucked up but never quite got around to fixing. But I knew if I wanted this, if I wanted him really with me, really in my life, he had to really be in my life – all of it. Even the fucked up messy parts that I haven’t fixed. I haven’t lived a fully integrated life in a long time, a life where every aspect of my life was connected, flowing each into the other. I had become so used to keeping men away from this part of me, it was very uncomfortable initially to let him into this aspect of my life. All of the physical, sexual intimacy that has occurred between us the past months was NOTHING compared to letting him wake up in my room, talk to my son about wrestling, and kissing him goodbye on my front porch in full view of some of my neighbors. Hell, they haven’t seen a man coming around regularly to see me that I was affectionate with in AGES.

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This was my last line of defense with him. Now he has fully entered all of me, every part of me that exists is now full of his presence and has been impacted by his being. It was one of the most frightening things I have ever done, and I told him how scared I was. But he never wavered. He just really wanted to see all of me, and now he has. And, in spite of seeing all of me, he still wants me, still wants to be here, still wants to be with me. And that acceptance has been so incredible for me; it has made me feel like I truly can accomplish anything, and everything I want to accomplish. His acceptance of my crazy little world, his willingness to get to know it and take a place in it that is supportive of me is one of the sexiest things I’ve ever seen any man do. I commend his bravery, and I commend myself for boldly getting out of his way while he entered my life, and not apologizing for what he found there. And he’s let me into his life just as much. And no one is ashamed of what we have found there. In fact I’d even say I’ve found more of myself by seeing my life through his eyes than I ever found on my own. So all in all, while it’s been uncomfortable, the rewards have been well worth it. It has given me a heightened sense of comfort in myself, in my feeling at home in my skin all the time. It has helped settle me in a way I didn’t know existed. And it has helped me feel a level of acceptance that I didn’t know I could have with another person.

So please feel free to let the right people come behind your curtain…I know how lonely it can get back there.

Peace!

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Abortion — My Story

I have been reasonably close to a lot of women over the years, both friends and family. By my estimation (part of which includes actually keeping count, because at one time I did keep track of the numbers), 80 percent of them has had at least one abortion, myself included. I’m saying that approximately 8 out of every 10 women I know has confessed to me that she’s had an abortion. Additionally, they tell me it is something they have NEVER shared with ANYONE, not even their significant others. When these various women told me about their experiences over the years, they were all very quick to say they were only telling me this because they felt I was a non-judgmental person, and it was something they’d always wanted to share with someone. Usually the discussion about the abortion and the circumstances surrounding it was hugely cathartic for the woman – they told me about the man who caused the pregnancy, why they chose the abortion, and sometimes they even told me where they went to have it. They told me what it felt like when it was happening, and how they felt about their choice, both then and now. Every woman said they wanted to share it with someone, to unburden themselves with being the only person carrying the weight of the story, and I was the person they chose to tell.

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When I asked why they never shared their story with anyone, most said they’d made peace with it, it didn’t matter now, it was not something they were particularly proud of, etc. I always ask if they felt like telling someone they had an abortion would cause that person to view them differently in a negative sense. Of course I didn’t suggest they go out and buy a billboard to announce it, but I did suggest that there certainly were a few people in their lives that it would have been appropriate to tell. Most were willing to concede that identifying themselves as a woman who had an abortion wasn’t something they were willing to take on. I definitely respect the choice to be private, but I’m very conflicted about the choice to be ashamed. While there are certainly things I’ve done in my life that are not my brightest, best moments and I’m not particularly proud of them, I’ve learned not be ashamed of them either, and I fully expect anyone who truly cares for me to accept every part of  my history, even the ugly parts.

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I had an abortion many years ago. I was almost twenty, and felt ill-equipped to raise a child. My boyfriend at the time was supportive of my choice, and extremely comforting throughout the entire process. I was not happy about my choice, nor was he, but he left the decision to me, and I felt it was what was best for me. While he promised to be supportive of both me and our child if I chose to have it, I realized even then I had to consider the possibility that if he turned out not to be a man of his word, I would be raising my child alone. I did not feel my family would be supportive of my choice to keep the baby, and I was certain they would not give me the help I would surely need as a young single mother. I felt the child could not be raised well given my limited resources, and I was not willing to bring a child into the world I was not reasonably confident that I could raise into a functioning adult, and I was not willing to take the chance that it was somehow all magically be okay. So I ended the pregnancy. I do not remember much about the process itself. Between my boyfriend and I pooling our finances, I was able to get a “high-end” procedure and was under general anesthesia the entire time. I went to sleep, and when I woke up it was over. The pain afterwards was pretty much like what they described – like having really awful menstrual cramps. My boyfriend took me home, and I stayed pretty still and quiet for the 3 days following the abortion. But since I was at home resting, I found myself watching a lot of soap operas on television, and coincidentally most of them seemed to have storylines involving characters who were contemplating having abortions, having abortions, or who had recently had abortions. In these fictional situations, the guilt and shame and horrible feelings these fictional women would experience after their plot-driven procedures was highly dramatic. These women were unable to eat, unable to sleep without being awakened by dreams of crying babies, and unable to get over their guilt about their choice. I recall a couple of plot lines when the women’s guilt post-abortion would make them suicidal, causing them to jump off bridges and drive off cliffs to assuage the guilt wracking their heads and hearts. I actually felt badly that I was nowhere near suicidal afterward my abortion. I felt very badly yes, horribly so, but all in all I really did feel I’d made the best choice under the circumstances. I prayed and prayed to God, asking Him to forgive me, and I felt that He, in his infinite mercy, would do so. I can’t say I spent a great deal of time thinking about it afterwards. But in spite of how I put my decision to rest in my head, I still haven’t discussed this experience until now, except with those women who confided in me regarding their abortions.

shame on you

As I’ve delved more into my creative self, and have found that ugly uncomfortable truth-telling is what I do best, I find myself drawn to this experience, because it is the one I’ve found most difficult to share with people, in spite of how much I’ve shared. I’ve always told myself that part of the reason is that I truly am at peace with my choice, and I didn’t want that peace disturbed by those who feel I should not be at peace with it. And I do understand some people don’t think I should be at peace with it. There are those who feel I have committed murder through my actions, and they cannot fathom how I could have come to peace with this thing. But I have always made peace with any choice I’ve ever made without exception, because that is how I keep my sleep restful at night. But the most important reason I haven’t shared my abortion story even at appropriate times with appropriate people, my significant others in particular, is that I am aware of how men tend to think of women who have had abortions. Abortions are something “decent” women don’t get. They don’t allow themselves to get into the situations that tend to lead to abortions. If you are a woman who has chosen to end a pregnancy, you are viewed as somehow…I don’t know…”tainted”, or less than what that significant other would want them to be in some capacity. A man’s ability to put you on a pedestal seems to decrease, and they look at you with eyes that clearly say “how could a woman like you, a woman I love, admire, respect, do something like that?” And while I don’t want to necessarily be put on a pedestal, I do want the man I care about to think well of me. So typically it’s been easier to skip over this part of disclosure in my dealings with men. And even when I talk to men about abortions, they’re very quick to say they don’t know ANYONE who has had one and that NO WOMAN has ever had an abortion in relation to sex with them. And they say it with a great deal of conviction, as if they really truly could know what each and every woman they have ever known has done. And you can tell by the way they say it to…its with that disdainful tone, that “only a certain kind of woman does that” tone…its said in that tone reserved for women men don’t take “seriously” as potential lifetime partners. They truly feel that a woman’s decision to end a pregnancy really does say something about their character. When I point out that I know many, many women and an overwhelming majority of them have had at least one abortion, they quickly explain why the women they know couldn’t have possibly had abortions. They were completely unwilling to consider the possibility that even the fine upstanding women they knew had abortions occasionally. Perhaps it would have been too much of a paradigm shift for them to consider it. Maybe it was easier for them to paint women with broad brush strokes, clinging to their unrealistic and dangerous ideas of what “good” women do and what “ungood/bad” women do. And rather than challenge that idea, I have acquiesced.

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But recently, as I’ve been blogging more, and writing more openly about myself, my life, my experiences, I find myself returning to this secret spot. And I find myself wanting to challenge it. More importantly, I find myself wanting to challenge the idea that I must be this pristine (at least in some form or fashion or to some extent) individual to be worthy of a man’s love, honor and respect. I find myself asking why I’ve kept this secret. I find myself asking why I’ve lied over the years when men have asked me if I’ve ever had an abortion. I find myself wondering why all these women, some clearly still suffering greatly and silently with pain, shame, regret, and hurt, still can’t find even a measure of peace in their lives because they carry this secret. I find myself wondering why, when these women seek me out to share themselves with, and find solace with me, they seem to feel that something has been lifted in them. I find myself asking why, time and time again, society insists on judging women so much more harshly for their actions than they would ever judge a man. I find myself asking why men require their women to fit into certain “acceptable” boxes when it comes to their life experiences, especially those related to sex. I find myself asking why men give you that look when they ask if you’ve ever had an abortion which clearly says “the answer better be no.”

I said all that to say this…

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I have had an abortion. My God and I have discussed it, and we have entered into as much resolution as we can have around the matter. I have stopped lying when abortion comes up in conversation. I now bear the shady looks I get when I fully admit this, and look back steadily when I get the judgmental gazes, stepping into myself fully convicted and meeting head on the challenge to my character that I know is coming. I feel abortion is such a highly personal, highly charged decision, it really needs to be left to the parties personally involved, and the government’s role should ONLY be to make certain those who chose to provide abortions are properly licensed and regulated to protect the health, safety and well-being of those who seek them, and the safety of those who provide them.  In spite of the fact I’ve had an abortion, I still look at the two children I do have and realize there were supposed to be more than two. But all of these things are part of me living with my choice, and I ask no one else to do that for me. But for those who claim to love me, I ask that they do no make my choice more difficult to live with than it may already be.

And for you men who are so sure you don’t know ANY WOMAN who has had an abortion, I ask you to consider the judgments you’re making as you say that. Because you quite likely have caused at least one woman you care about to really shut down when she needed conversation, consolation, support and acceptance. I respectfully ask that you put aside your prejudices about what woman are, and what we are not. Consider that there is much more to being a woman than you could ever know, and be willing to just take the word of an actual woman who is doing her best to handle what life throws at her.

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PEACE!

New Pieces for the Valentine’s Day show…MY WORKS IN PROGRESS…

So as I prepare for my Valentine’s Day show, I’m working on some new pieces. Gonna put a few of my works in progress (WIPs) here…

(This will actually give those of you who are interested in seeing how I work as far as creating my pieces go a chance to see some of my process.)

I’m working on a bondage piece for the night, which is a little new for me. I want something kind of dark and sinister BUT still sexy, but I know writing to that dark/sexy place is going to be a process. So I know I’m going to have to write several edits before I get the right combination of dark/sexy/sinister/passionate/lustful. Plus I’m looking for double meaning…while I want the poem to clearly be about bondage and being tied up in the literal sense, I also want it to be about holding someone hostage emotionally, or even sexually. Or even about a person being so pleased with their lover they literally want to be tied to them.

So I have two edits here I’m working from. Between the two of them they contain all my core concepts. I’ve written them both. Now I’ll leave them alone for a few days and revisit them. Then I’ll do at least two more edits, and see how I feel about where my concept is going.

FIRST EDIT:

Tie me to you.
Til I move through you.
From one side to the other.
From the friend side to the lover.
Where the ties that bind me
Hold me so tight
I cannot leave you
Try though I might.
And when the dark comes
The ties become slick
Pressure from my pussy
Pressed against your dick
Holding me to a promise
That my body chose to make.
Holding me like a harness.
Til my body starts to shake.
Tie me to you.
So I won’t lose you.
And you won’t lose me.
Always choose me.

Tie me to you.

(I like the length of this one. I like the way it hits you. But I don’t think its clear enough that the person is actually tied up, is actually bound. It’s nasty, which I like, but it may be a bit too nasty, because I want it to be lustful in an affectionate kind of way, not a purely carnal kind of way.)

SECOND EDIT

So you tie me to you.
And you move me thru you.
From one side to the other.
From the friend side to the lover.
While the ties that bind me
hold me and remind me
that now I cannot leave you
Now I exist to receive you.
Arms and legs restricted,
heart and soul conflicted.
Forcing me to be still
while you take me at your will.

So you tie me to you.
And you move me thru you.
And the rope is burning.
And my heart is yearning.
You whisper “forever dear.”
“It’s how long I’ll keep you here.”
And I’m smothered in your kisses.
And I’m drowning in your riches.

So you tie me to you.
And you move me thru you.
And my open tunnel is peaking
while my trembling lips are speaking
“Will you ever let me go?”
You respond with a smiling “no.”
“I don’t bind you to me just for fun.”
“This makes the two of us one.”

So you tie me to you.
And you move me through you.
And our movements become a dance.
And the dance becomes romance.
It holds me to a promise.
It holds me like a harness.
It makes me say what’s true.
Makes me say “I love you.”

So please tie me to you…

(I like some of the development, but now I think its too long. I like the literalness of it. I like the “I Love you” part. But I think its gotten a bit too ethereal and otherworldly and not carnal enough.)

TO BE CONTINUED…

Fear…

Fear.

I’ve never been good at handling fear in any form or fashion. Most of my life I’ve avoided it whenever I could. And I mean any kind of fear – hell, I won’t even watch scary movies or anything infused with any kind of horror theme. I’ve been afraid many times in my life, but I honestly cannot say I was strong warrior woman when I was afraid. I ran. Even if I seemed to be facing something I was afraid of, inside I was cowering and crying “like a li’l bitch”. And I only faced the amount of fear that was absolutely necessary to deal with whatever I was trying to get through. Very rarely have I faced every bit of my fear of something. I’ve never looked at any of my fears directly in the face, ever. But I know that’s one of the reasons why my life hasn’t been as successful as it could have been at this point. I’ve been afraid of certain things I needed to do. And this applies to every aspect of my life.

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I am having my first major event in Baltimore, the first event I’ve ever had locally that I’ve run on my own without any major assistance or input from anyone else. It is something I’ve needed to do for quite a while, years in fact. For many reasons related to marketing and branding and such that I won’t bore you with here, I need to start creating my own opportunities to perform along with booking gigs that other people are planning. I have always been afraid to run my own event from end to end because events are devilishly tricky things to manage and make successful, especially in Baltimore, especially financially. It’s a total crap shoot. I can find a venue, book amazing talent, serve great food and drinks, and if the weather is bad that day, I’m assed out. There is always the risk of not getting support from people who have all kinds of reasons for not coming to your event. And if you are in a situation like mine where you need an event series to showcase your brand, you have to be prepared for your first few events to not turn a profit. In the beginning, breaking even is success. Events are really nerve racking for someone like me who is meticulous when it comes to planning and details and logistics and such. Worst of all, I truly TRULY fear failure. I hate the awful feeling it gives me when I know I’ve totally messed up at something I wanted to make work. This fear of failure had ruled every aspect of my life and every decision I have made, and it has had a great impact when it come to my creative endeavors. I truly am afraid of falling totally flat on my face, which is crazy coming from me considering the very nature of what I do creatively – exposing elements of the human experience at its most intimate and personal – is something that would cause most people a great deal of embarrassment and has a high risk for blowing up in my face. When you read or listen to my work or see me at a show, I probably seem like a fearless individual. Hell, some of the pictures of me out there would lead one to believe that I am afraid of nothing. Totally untrue.

fear with woman and shadow hand

But at this stage of my life, my need and desire for success is racing past my fear. Really REALLY fast. So fast in fact it may be coming around a second time to pass my fear again. My fear is so covered with dust sometimes I barely recognize it. And because of that, my fear is slowly lessening its grip on me.

And as a result, I am having my very first Valentine’s Show in my hometown – click here for details.

My fear of failure has definitely taken a toll on my personal life too. By many people’s standards, the fact that I continue to be unmarried at this stage of my life is an indication of some sort of core shortcoming in me. It seems to represent some kind of failure. And while I try to ignore that feeling, it is very difficult at times. Especially as I get older, and have all this alleged experience and wisdom to fall back on, one would think it would help me make better choices in terms of relationships. I blame it on everything from my picky nature to my moon sign being Sagittarius, which (supposedly) means I am in need of a great deal of independence, freedom, and can seem aloof at times. But fear has affected my relationship choices, and even to some degree, plays a role in my current situation. Though I’m happier than I’ve been in a very long time, and I’m feeling very good about where things stand between us, I am afraid of the fact that there are so many elements of unconventionality in our relationship, the significant age difference being one of the greatest. While it truly doesn’t cross my mind when we are alone, when we are out I become very aware of it. And while many times I get a kind of a “you go girl” energy from other women who seem to enjoy living vicariously through my cougar-ness, even if only for a minute, there are other times where it’s the total opposite.

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(Example: We were walking up Charles Street together one evening, and a petite woman approaching us was carrying, or trying to carry a huge box. The box was clearly winning the fight, and he stopped to try to assist her. Greeting her as he took the box so she could get her bearings, he started to hand the box back to her. He then asks if she’s going far with the box and she indicates that she’s just going to her car right down the street. He turns to ask me if I mind if he carries the box to her car, and of course I say “sure, no problem.” Less than two minutes later he comes running up the street, top speed, yelling my name, and when he gets to me he takes my hand and starts walking fast. I ask what’s wrong. He doesn’t want to tell me at first, but then finally admits that as he was putting the box in the woman’s car, she said “tell your mom I said thank you.” He responded with, “she’s not my mom”, and ran off.)

Conquering my fear where he has concerned has been challenging. I feel myself slipping into a place and space where I will again be caring very deeply and passionately for someone, and that scares me SO VERY MUCH. My fear of failing again in this department tries to take hold of me in my weaker, more vulnerable moments, when I’m falling asleep to the sound of him murmuring sweet nothings to me and my awful brain screams at me “you know he doesn’t mean it.” Or sometimes when he’s gone out of his way to plan something really nice for us my fear rises up in me and I wonder how awful I will feel when he’s gone. I wonder if I’ll be able to stand it again – I still have a significant scar from the last time I fell off this ride. I find myself saying stupid things to him like “you have to promise not to ever be mean to me because I don’t think I could take it”, or “why do I always end up with such heartless men who I know are going to hurt me”, kicking the self-fulfilling prophecy machine into overdrive with my pessimism.  But in spite of my fear, this show has gone on too, just like my Valentine’s Show. And I am very happy that it has, because he means a great deal to me.

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I don’t like facing my fears square in the face. I still squint and my first urge is to look away, but I don’t. I am slowly learning to just face them, every bit of them. I’m training myself to see them for what they are, the obstacles to my happiness, my contentment, my bliss, my lovers, my friends, my open shining joyous self. I have stopped having the unrealistic expectation that I shouldn’t be afraid sometimes. I am learning to love Clark Kent as much as Superman. I’m learning to accept the weak parts of me that allow fear to enter into me at times, and now I focus my energy on making sure the time they spend with me is brief and that they take none of my spirit and energy with them when they go. Progress is slow, I have good days and bad days, but progress is being made, so it’s cool. And I have him to keep me company. Just like Floetry says in the video clip below I am learning to “take…my…time.”

Now if I could just bring myself to watch a scary movie…

PEACE!

A New Year’s Revolution

2013 year celebration with fireworks

So it seems the Mayans were incorrect and 2013 has arrived. While I’ve never been a fan of New Year’s resolutions, I am always a fan of improvement and progress. I’m all for people wanting to be better than they’ve been previously, and if the beginning of a new year can jump start that process, I’m all for it. But my new year isn’t starting out with a resolution. It is starting with a revolution.

2013 has started off in a very revolutionary way for me. It has been very different than any new year has in the past decade (at least). I spent New Year’s Eve with the man I’ve been seeing, and I haven’t been happily or successfully involved with a man in the past decade (at least), including last relationship that ended early last year. And this man has come at a time when I was pretty much sick of relationships and everything that had anything to do with relationships. If you had asked me a year ago if I thought I’d be spending my last hours of 2012 and my first few days of 2013 the way I did, I would have laughed in your face. So for me, the passage of New Year’s Eve 2012 into New Year’s Day 2013 was a revolution for me – a relationship revolution primarily, but a revolution in other ways too. Something inside me has decided to allow myself the pleasure of a man who is truly with me in every way. Something inside me has decided to take a serious risk at a time when I didn’t think I had it in me anymore. Something in me decided that maybe I did like someone, maybe I did want to be with someone, and maybe they liked me and wanted to be with me too. Something in me decided to ask for what I wanted. While that doesn’t necessarily sound like something revolutionary, it is for me. It is revolutionary for me because for such a long, long time I was afraid to ask what I wanted because I thought the pain and the feeling of being horribly disappointed by not receiving it. I’d been so terribly let down by people I trusted, I just removed myself from people. I seemed destined to have a closed and locked down heart, especially after my last disaster. But my heart is opening again, and to my surprise it is still a beautifully sweet, tender thing – and that opening is the beginning of my New Year’s revolution.

sadsmileyface

Holidays tend to be rather tragic for me, and New Year’s Eves past have been no exception. I’ve been stood up several times on past New Year’s Eves – not by casual dates mind you, but by my significant others that I’d been involved with at the time. Those nights were awful for me. They involved elaborate plans that we made together that were simply cast aside without any consideration for my feelings because the other person lied to me. And this happened on more than one occasion with more than one person, which made me feel even worse. In fact for quite some time afterwards I absolutely refused to celebrate New Year’s Eve. Even if I was invited out on a date or to a party or whatever I simply would not go, because I was too afraid of how awful I would feel if I was disappointed by the night. And the past few years in my most recent relationship had been the same way. He always had to work on New Year’s Eve and was usually too tired to do anything afterwards, so it was easy for me to say that I didn’t mind us not spending that night together. (One year we did try “celebrating” before he went to work, but then he was exhausted at work, so we didn’t do that in subsequent years.) But truthfully I really would have liked to have spent New Year’s Eve with him in a blatantly celebratory kind of way. More specifically, I would have liked him to have wanted to celebrate New Year’s Eve with me. (Yeah, I’m slowly coming to terms with my sentimentality in regard to certain things.) But I was afraid he would disappoint me, so I didn’t really offer him the chance to, particularly because he was already disappointing me in so many other ways. And he never volunteered any alternatives, so I left it alone and contented myself with the “Happy New Year” text he always faithfully sent at midnight, and the texting sessions we’d have once he got off work.

New Years Celebrations

But this year was different, because he is different. He planned for our New Year’s Eve. (We’d had a somewhat rocky Thanksgiving and hadn’t seen each other on Christmas at all because of his insane work schedule, and he even said to me that he wanted to make up for that.) He spent days planning a five course meal for me that he spent literally two days of his life preparing. He picked me up promptly New Year’s Eve. He served me each course, and each course was better than the first one. And I’m talking amazing food – the menu included back bean and potato soup topped with garlic shrimp, short ribs with vegetables, and scallops with vegetable orzo. He even made dessert and cocktails with freshly squeezed juice that he’d let soak with the alcohol for hours. He went to a great deal of trouble, and he was really interested in my critique of each dish. I was flattered and touched. We had talked about possibly going out, but after dinner we decided to stay in and we watched the fireworks at the Harbor on television – or more accurately the television watched us. Happy New Year to me.

scallops and orzo(This isn’t the actual dish because it looked too good for me to wait for him to take a picture of it. But it basically looked like this…)

That was Sunday night. I went home Wednesday evening. Even then as he was kissing me goodbye he said, “you know you really don’t have to leave. You know you don’t want to.” What impressed me the most (besides the food) was that he’d worked over 30 days straight, a minimum of 10 hours a day on each day, and when he finally got days off, he spent them with me.

That too was revolutionary.

So as 2013 marches forward, I find myself in the throes of a personal revolution. A revolution pushing me past my hardened, lonely self, a revolution that is helping me face certain painful parts of my past and is assisting in healing those wounds.  It is a revolution forcing me to look at my softer self, forcing me to let myself be okay with being sensitive, with being cared for, with having genuine affection and care lavished upon me in a way that isn’t dependent upon me pretending to not want it or need it. Although coldness, bitterness, and cynicism are by no means pleasant things, if those things become what you are accustomed to, you can find a certain amount of comfort in them if you try. You can fool yourself into thinking that you’re in control of your hurt so that makes the hurt somehow easier to bear. My New Year’s revolution is about me re-discovering my warmer, softer, happier, more joyful self. And I encourage you to have a New Year’s revolution of your very own, whether it is in regard to a personal relationship, career, health, finances, family, or whatever is troubling you. If you’re anything like me, you don’t think you deserve a revolution. You don’t feel its necessary, or you don’t think its worth the trouble or effort. Maybe you have just gotten so used to the status quo and a revolution just seems like more than you can handle right now. Revolutions are known to be these huge sweeping movements necessary to change these  hugely awful, horrible conditions and circumstances. But trust me, YOU ARE WORTH A REVOLUTION. You have every right to making sweeping change in your life. You deserve it. And sometimes an opportunity to create a revolution in your life presents itself if you’re willing to take a chance and reach out, sometimes even reaching out to a person. That’s what happened to me. So it doesn’t have to be this overturning of your entire life. Sometimes you can start your revolution just by being open to change – a new idea, a new lover, a new friend, a new hairstyle, a new job, a new sexual position, WHATEVER!

Enough of blog reading. GO START YOUR REVOLUTION!