Number of Bullets Dodged: 2

It occurred to me the other day that although I have been single for a while, I’m actually kind of fortunate. Why?  Because I somehow managed to dodge not one, but two relationship bullets. None of this was of my own doing; I was one of those dopes that stuck around far longer than I should have in relationships that were detrimental to my happiness and mental health.

Bullet #1 – My Beantown bad boy. I met “P” when he was stationed in Montreal. He worked as a customs agent at the airport. We shared a chemistry that was off the charts.  Unfortunately, that was about all we shared.  We just could not seem to make things work.

I always felt that something was not quite right, that he was hiding something from me.  His work hours were kind of weird (which I’m sure was not entirely true) and he would head back to Boston every couple weekends to spend time with his little daughter and his folks.

He was also known to ghost me on a fairly regular basis.  The night of our very first date, he called an hour prior to cancel.  Apparently a “big emergency” cropped up at the airport. Something about someone trying to bring cocaine into the country or out….not sure how that worked, but I call bullshit on that one.

That was the first of many cancellations on his part.   We would make plans to meet and something aaaaalllways came up.  This went on and off for a couple years.  It seemed that every time I was getting over him, he would call.  The last date we had been on while he was still in Montreal was a doozie.  It was around my birthday and he wanted to take me out.  We had a lovely time and he had asked me to stay over night.  I could not believe my ears.  He NEVER asked me to stay.  I was over the moon happy. At last, I thought, we are getting on the right track with this. I could not have been more wrong.

The following morning we were lying in bed talking, and that’s when he dropped the bombshell.  He fessed up that he was returning to Boston for good in a couple weeks.  He may as well have slapped me across the face. It would have hurt less.  I just sat there, at a loss for words.  Could he not have told me this sooner?  His answer: he was afraid I would not agree to see him if he would have told me.

Ya think? What kind of fuckery was this? Well, thanks for taking that choice away from me, shithead.

It hurt like hell when he left.  Flash forward to about 10 years of on again off again long distance romance/train wreck. We would see each other maybe twice a year.  He would keep in touch, ghost me, lather rinse repeat. I can’t tell you how many times he would swear up and down he was driving to Montreal and then cancel at the last minute.  It got to the point where I would start having horrible anxiety days before his supposed arrival because I was just waiting for the other shoe to drop.

In those lapses of time where he would pull a Houdini on me, I would receive an occasional email saying he was in the middle East.  This part is true, I’ve seen the pics. He could never tell me many details about his work.  Apparently it was all “sensitive information”.  Maybe, maybe not.  I’ll never know.

The last time I saw him was in 2012.  I was vacationing in Ogunquit.  He met me there and he spent the night.  He even eluded to the fact that the next time he went to South Carolina for work, I could maybe meet him there. Maybe...he wasn’t sure….

The tip off should have been the fact that he spent the night.  Apparently I forgot about this pattern from years earlier. It was the big kiss off once more.  He left in the morning and I was packing and getting ready to head back home, he called.  He wanted to know if I was ok. Uhm..yes, why?  He wanted to say thank you.  Thank me? For what?  I’ll never forget his answer “For everything.  For you.”  It was only after he hung up did I have a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach.  Mother effer.

The entire drive home, I kept replaying our weekend together, wondering if I had missed something.  Surely he wasn’t doing what I thought he was doing.  Was he?

Yep, he was.  I didn’t realize until later what that goodbye really meant. He started ghosting me again, and next thing I knew, he got married.  Which is interesting considering he told me he could never ask me to marry him because of his health issues.  He loved me more than anything and apparently it just wouldn’t be fair to me. Just couldn’t do that to me.  Yessiree.

So you’re probably wondering where the part about dodging a bullet comes in.  When P was 13 he began a five year long battle with cancer.  He pulled through after extensive rounds of chemo and radiation.

I knew he had been sick as a teen, but the most recent health update was learned through a GoFundMe account started by his best friend.  He is trying to raise $20,000 to help cover medical expenses and bills.  With the years, those treatments have taken their toll on P’s heart and lungs and needs transplants.  Thing is, his doctors have stated that his health would begin to deteriorate faster than it has in the past year.

I don’t know if he was sincere in his reason to not marry me.  All I know is that if I would have left everything behind; my family, my job, my friends, I would be in the same position his wife is in now.  Only thing is, I probably would not be able to work legally.  We would be broke and I would probably eventually end up coming back to Canada, heartbroken and destitute.

Since having received this news, I just want to hear his voice, tell him that despite everything I still love him.  That I hate what he’s going through.  How sorry I am he is not well.  That I am happy he found someone to build a life with.  That I am grateful he’s not going through this alone. I saw him briefly in a dream the other night and it was nice to see his face and hear his voice, even if it was not real.

I’ve written enough on this one.  Stay tuned for the story of bullet #2.

 

 

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Financial Support..And A Vacation To Hawaii????

I have debated whether or not I should write this.  Why? Because it involves people from my church. The youth pastor and his family, to be specific.

Have you ever had a weird feeling around someone and you just could not give any rational explanation why? This has pretty much been the case since day 1 of having met this couple.

For those of you who are fellow believers and participate in church life, I know the first thing that will pop into your minds is that I should not be speaking this way.  Let me offer up apologies in advance, but I am human and with that comes imperfections.  I’ve searched my heart and I don’t think there’s any real malice there, just a niggling, annoying feeling that won’t go away.

When I first heard the word “missionaries”, it conjured up images of people in remote places in the world with no running water or electricity, trying to plant churches. Coming to Canada from across the U.S. border was not exactly what I had expected, but what do I know?

So, long story short, this couple and their children, who are related to my pastor (they are brothers), came on the scene about five years ago. Montreal is one of the least churched provinces in Canada, especially when it comes to youth.  This was their calling, to draw the young’uns to God.

In all fairness, they are very active within the youth community and have managed to make connections with teens.  Not many have actually started coming to church, but they do attend youth nights and activities outside of church.  Hey, if it keeps them off the street, drugs and other vices, it’s all good.

So what’s the problem?  They seem insincere and full of themselves. Little cliques have formed and we have lost some really good folks due to personality clashes.  They have rubbed some the wrong way, myself included. We used to be so much more united, and now there are divisions.  If you don’t notice them, it’s because you are part of a clique.

There are so many things that have cropped up, but I’ll stick to the latest red flag.  They just came back from a vacation…to Hawaii.  I’ve been to Hawaii.  It’s not cheap.  So, they are getting funds from their church in Pennsylvania as well as from our church in Montreal.  That’s not all.  Last year they all went to Disneyland and took a young girl they have unofficially “adopted” as well.  Uhm…..is it just me, or does this seem a little extravagant?

There have been a couple of times when they have had fundraisers (and by fundraisers, I mean turning to the congregation for money) for a particular youth group activity.  Here’s a thought…have a carwash, a bakesale, craft sale, etc. Or, stop using the money you are being given to go on expensive vacations while you are “missionaries”.

Another thing that gets me is the “you’re with us or against us” mentality.  If one does not buy into their way of thinking 100%, it’s an issue, and you are automatically labeled a trouble maker.  I’m sorry, but calling myself Christian does not mean I check my brain and judgement at the door on Sunday.

I’ve seen pics of her parent’s home.  Do you know they have an full sized giraffe that they had taxidermy-ed in their living room.  Not just the head.  The whole freaking thing! This was a “trophy” they hunted and killed while on a safari somewhere. They are not hurting financially.  Good for them, but again, modesty is lacking, in my humble opinion.

Then there’s that fake smile that never quite reaches the eyes.  I usually have a really good sense about people and there’s something about this couple that just has never felt “right”.

Don’t get me started on the Facebook rants.  Do you know what I absolutely love about my pastor and his wife?  You never know what their political views are.  They keep everything to themselves.  Not these two.  They would post all sorts of stuff about Trump during the elections and start online debates with others and should they become cross (pun not intended!) with someone, they would post little quips and digs, hidden behind scripture.  Seriously?

I got tired of seeing the bullshit on display and I unfriended them from Facebook.  The result?  I don’t see or hear any of the drama anymore and I am less annoyed.

So that’s my rant.  I’d love to hear comments from others, whether or not you agree with me.  Sometimes it helps to hear other perspectives. I just hope that when their time is up in two years, that they pack up and head back home.  It will be interesting to see how things turn out with the rest of the congregation.

fake smile

 

 

 

January 8

Today’s entry: Need to Achieve

Some of us are becoming the men we wanted to marry.

– Gloria Steinem

A former love of mine was put it so aptly “You women have become so self sufficient that you don’t need men anymore”.

Wow.  I could not believe what I was hearing.  Was he right?  I was so surprised that a man could feel that way. It was a real eye opener.

Have we become so good at achieving and accomplishing that we have put our softer, more feminine side on the back burner to our own detriment?

As much as I hate to admit it, I think we have.

A little background info on yours truly; lost my dad at the age of 17, got kicked out of the house at 18, was in a bachelor apartment and finishing high-school, hit the ground running and was hand to mouth living for several years. Got married, got divorced when my son was 2 and have raised him on my own.  Worked my way up in clinical research and have never remarried. My kiddo is 26 years of age.

I’ve dated, but never successfully.  Long term relationships would inevitably leave me losing my identity and feeling miserable.  Long story short, domesticity scares the hell out of me.  It looks nice for other people, but I’m just not sure I’m cut out for it.

I’ve accomplished much.  My life today looks nothing like it did when I was in a married couple.  This, right now, who I am, feels right.

I think Gloria Steinem was spot on in her comment.  When I find a male version of myself, then I might reconsider my days as a singleton.  Until then though, I remain content in my state of celibacy.

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Now That That’s Over…

Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas. Yes, even though mine sucked large this year (I guess I should say last year now?), it is still one of my favourite time of the year.

Am I glad it’s over? Hell ya. Enough now. Let’s get back to a sense of normalcy and routine.

No resolutions for me in the new year. Goals and plans only. That being said, one of my goals is to be more present. Life has a way of just sweeping us up in the daily grind, doesn’t it?

Rush to work, rush home, shopping, housework, lather rinse repeat. I hate that. Going through the motions means we miss out on opportunities to really have a good look around and appreciate situations and learning experiences.

In an effort to be more tuned in, I decided to dust off a book I bought so many many years ago. I’d like to share it with you if you are also on a quest to experience all the unseen but concrete goings on in life.

Obviously I cannot copy page for page due to copyright issues, but will be posting parts of it as food for thought. Maybe it will even encourage you to get a copy for yourself.

Here it is:

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There’s a quote each day and the author has written a little blurb about it. Nothing too long, just a paragraph or two.

Stay tuned for more!

07 January

Today’s entry: Rigidity

Changes in life are not only possible and predictable, but to deny them is to be an accomplice to one’s own unnecessary vegetation.

  Gail Sheehy

I get this; change should not be scary.  As I get older though, I do find that I feel a bit more apprehension about change than I did years ago.

Why is it I always encourage others to embrace change and get excited for them but can’t do the same for myself?

Over the holidays, I noticed that regardless of what the topic was, my mom’s response was always of the “what if” variety.  I don’t want to live my life like that.  If changes do not come our way, we stop growing and become dull and disgruntled. Am I right?

Example – mom’s apartment is in need of a good makeover.  She has been living there for 18 years and has accumulated a lot of “stuff”.  It’s all clean and put away nicely, but she really has no need for all of it.  It also takes up quite a bit of space.  I offered to give her bedroom a fresh look come Spring.  Right away, she started fussing about color of walls and has to take the next tennant into consideration.  Whaaattt?  No you do not.  The next time mom moves it will be in a pine box as she is healthy as a horse, but still in her 80’s.  I had a good talking with her.  Why is she limiting what could be a nice change for herself “in case” the next person who lives there does not like it.  See?  Apprehensive about everything lately.  That should not be.

The prodigal is going through so much change right now and although he is scared, he is plowing forward, at his own pace, in his own way.  I have learned to shut my mouth and have not tried to control or fix anything.  I offer my attention to him as a sounding board when he needs to vent, advice when he asks for it and guidance when I think he may have overlooked something.

My changes?  Not sure yet.  I do know that I’m trying new things in an effort to meet new people.  I have friends, but my motto has always been variety is the spice of life.

Have a great Sunday, all!

 

 

On The 11th And 12th Days Of Christmas

So it comes to a close, my friends.  Thanks for following the twelve days of Christmas with me. I chose these two photographs because when I look at them, they give me a warm fuzzy feeling.

When I was four years old we moved from the city to the suburbs.  Below is a pic of the little bungalow we rented. Those were some of the best years of my life.  It was the time before my folks divorced and my dear old dad eventually died of both a broken heart and lung cancer.  We moved from there shortly thereafter. That was such a sad day.

Below I am doing what I loved doing most. Coloring and watching television.  I’m sure it was a Sunday night and we were sitting around the living room watching The Wonderful World of Disney.  Such great memories.

With that, I wish you all a very happy new year.  All the best for 2018!

On The Tenth Day Of Christmas

It’s a good thing there are only two days left…I’m running out of pics!

I love decorating Christmas trees and I’ve gotten pretty good at it if I do say so myself. Whatever did we do before Pinterest and YouTube?

Answer: we put together these types of hot messes.  I don’t recall having  giant spiders  at the house, yet the trees look like they are wrapped in spider webbing.

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Have a good night all!