Sunday, November 27, 2011

sunday night "lightbulb moment"

Every once in a while I struggle with the loneliness that comes with living in this city of millions.

It seems counter-intuitive, as there are constantly people around and there are so many things to do and see on any given day. But the culture here can be isolating. The city is filled with Type A people who work too much, socialize in a very structured way, don't often talk to one another, and go about their lives just as I do. I realize this is a very huge generalization. One thing I love the most about this city is that there are so many different kinds of people. I always say there is at least one out there that walks, talks, dresses, and thinks like me.

It has been four years for me and some days I still feel like I'm struggling through year one. I've met some wonderful people, have made great strides, and have learned a lot about myself. But I often feel like there is much missing.

Today was a boring day. I wasn't feeling 100% this morning and was really tired all day so I decided to go with it and be lazy. I was looking around the internet tonight and thinking about how bored I was. My solution to boredom is usually to plan the hell out of the coming days and weeks. (Good and bad, I suppose.) I decided to Google "meeting people NYC." One link was a forum in which people discussed how hard it is here socially.

I don't know why but this made me feel so much better. It acted as sort of a lightbulb moment for me. I know I'm not the first one to move here, having not known anyone and struggle with putting down roots, meeting "forever friends" and dealing with dating. Logically this has always made sense to me. But I am extremely hard on myself and expect a lot from myself. Especially after four years. Reading the thoughts of strangers (written even before I arrived on the East Coast even) made me realize that my struggles and feelings of not "succeeding" where others have are completely typical and normal.

This seems so silly, especially as I sit here typing it out, but it is so important for me. Hopefully it will help me find a bit of peace in the paths I've walked down and find some patience as I move forward and undoubtedly encounter more difficulty--and more happiness.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

giving thanks for the blues

I'm feeling blue.

Something exciting, happy, and hopeful ended abruptly and I've been feeling cheated and miserable and feeling very sorry for myself--a lesson that nothing is certain in life and life moves on.

Thanksgiving is tomorrow and I miss my family. I wish I were home with them, making food with my mom, listening to my crazy dog bark and whine to come in the house, watching documentaries with my dad, going to the movies with my bro, and enjoying my loved ones. I will be here in New York instead, headed to the home of a lovely friend who is gracious enough to take me in on the day of thanks.

And today I am thinking about what it means to be thankful and give thanks, even when we are angry, searching, feeling alone.

I am so very greatful for the things I have--the spirit to want more and the drive to seek it out. The feeling of discontent because I know that life is rich and powerful, that perspective is essential, and that happiness is earned not handed out.

Tomorrow will likely be a more difficult holiday for me. I recognize this and accept it but I refuse to stick in it. I will gather my feelings and mine them for what they can produce--thoughtfulness, introspection, and ultimately humility.

I am well. I am fed. I am loved. I am able to do so much.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

a night with anais nin

I love quotes. They inspire and motivate me. Some of my favorites are cynical (anything by Dorothy Parker), some are literary, but all keep me going because they speak to me. They put into words what I have trouble saying in that moment.

Tonight I'm stuck on Anais Nin. Here is my night. . .

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.

I, with a deeper instinct, choose a man who compels my strength, who makes enormous demands on me, who does not doubt my courage or my toughness, who does not believe me naïve or innocent, who has the courage to treat me like a woman.

We are like sculptors, constantly carving out of others the image we long for, need, love or desire, often against reality, against their benefit, and always, in the end, a disappointment, because it does not fit them.

Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


I remember reading somewhere about the Turkey Trot. I think that's what it was called... the dating phenomenon that occurs after high school when young couples split up to go off to college swearing they'll make it work. But the boy decides it isn't so he breaks it off with the girl around Thanksgiving--the first time they see each other again after the start of the new semester, new year, new life.

Over the past couple of years I've wondered if I have my own sort of autumnal issue. An Autumn Curse, if you will. I think I even blogged about this last year. Let me preface what I'm about to say with a disclaimer that I love the fall season. Like, love the pants off of it. I am totally an "autumn" color wise. My favorite color is brown. I'm a Virgo. Earth signs and all that rot. So fall = fave in my book.

But damnnit if I don't hate fall for what I seriously am starting to consider this stupid curse.

It all goes back 3 years. My first real fall season here in NYC as a dating person. Guy #1 and I met in October, dated. I swooned. A lot. He was great. He was a Left Coaster like me. I read into things. Saw things that weren't there. I was sporting some pretty spiffy rose colored glasses. He was great but he wasn't as into me as I was into him. He ended it a couple of days before Christmas. 2 mos into whatever it was. I was shocked. I cried and cursed him and threw myself into trying to find someone to replace him.

The next Fall I met Guy #2. I think it was November. He was friendly from the start, interesting and funny. We went out a few times. He was in the process of starting a new job. Red flag I didn't see. After a few dates he started blowing me off. Then he disappeared and things fizzled. I certainly contributed. Lessons learned. But I was still very surprised as I thought we had good chemistry.

Fast forward to September of last year. Guy #3. He was interesting. A former teacher. We had two good dates and a really awkward 3rd but I kept hope alive because I liked him. In hindsight, not as much as the others, but I was willing to give it time. He was definitely one of the better ones. The awkward goodbye after date 3 sealed it. He blew me off a bit and disappeared. Another one bites the dust.

That brings us to Guy #4. Freshly added to the "roster" last night. Things were going so, so very well. At least I thought they were. I was getting green lights all over the place. This was the best thing I'd experienced in a long time. I thought him a potential keeper. We were certainly headed in that direction. Until last night. It's not me. It's him. I won't say anything disparaging about him because the reason I am so crushed is because he is a wonderful guy. Really. One of the best I've ever met. We had sparks. I thought we were perfect for each other. It is him. I believe it and he took responsibility but it is a bit me too, isn't it? Because when it is the right person it just works out. It isn't so hard.

So I am 4/4. I won't give up on my beloved season yet though. I just know that September-December I'll be a little more wary.