Monthly Archives: November 2012

Love in All Forms (Well, It Worked)

Yesterday, something absolutely wonderful happened. Maybe you read the letter I wrote yesterday. If so, you’ve got an idea of what’s going on. And let’s just say, you will never read my complaints about missing my friendship ever again.

I spoke from the heart, tried to put someone else’s feelings before my own for once, and it was the right thing. Mr. S came home and saw my face. The first thing he said was “Are you happy, baby?” And I couldn’t contain it. I replied YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” With that many exclamation points, too. And he smiled at me and told me he was happy, too. I hope she is as happy as I am.

It is with love that I find myself surrounded. A lot of bad stuff went down in October. And it seems that November was the month to make it better. And, at the risk of sounding like Stan or Kyle from South Park, I learned something yesterday. I learned that admitting fault, being truly repentant for wrong-doing without selfish motives, and believing in something with all your heart, really pays off in the end. (You’d think, as a Catholic, I’d already get that. Right? Right? Ok, maybe I’m not funny.)

I’m often reminded time and time again that love is more important than anything else. Love of a spouse or partner or significant other, love of family, and love of friends. Last night, I fought back tears because I was just so happy. I am so happy. Life still isn’t  completely perfect. It never will be. But all the people I truly want in my life are here.

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Audience of One

Remember that post “Letters to People Who Won’t Read Them”? Well, this Daily Prompt is to do that: write a letter to someone who you wish would see it. But probably won’t. Here goes.

 

Dear Estranged Friend,

I have written this letter in my head dozens of times. It’s difficult to express my feelings when I can’t apologize. You felt that my apology before was selfish. I don’t want to piss you off any more than I have, so it makes the words difficult to come by.

If it is possible for you to ever forgive me, I’m willing to wait as long as you need. I didn’t mean to push too early. If you weren’t ready, I just wanted to know you weren’t ready. I deeply regret betraying your trust and offending you in all the other ways. I know that sounds like an apology. There’s really not much I can do about that.

If it is not possible for you to forgive me, then I will survive. Your friendship meant a lot to me and I hate losing that. But it’s not for me to decide. At least I’ll always have the good memories to curb the bad ones.

I’ve also had about ten dreams about you. Half where we became friends again, the other half where you were seeking revenge against me. It’s been hard not to contact you and tell you about the dreams. I’m doing my best here.

You encouraged me to get my own blog. Every time I log on here, I think about you. That’s a bunch of times every day. I refer to you often. Usually about how hard it’s been on me. But I’ve made progress and tried to see it from your side. I can never really know how exactly you feel. I’ve never been and never will be you. However, I do think we relate on emotional levels because we share similar issues there. When I was struggling after our fight, I wanted to go to you and tell you. I wanted to ask how you would cope with something like this.

In short, I miss you. I wish I could make it better. I still hope we can make up or that I’ll just forget it all.

I want you to know, if you care, that I’m doing better. I’m happy. Mr. S and I, we’re planning our lives over the next two years. We’re talking about med school and kids and buying a house. I always thought you’d be like a third aunt to my kids. Especially after all those conversations about how we’d love to raise our kids together, go to the park or on playdates with them. But still, I’m excited because the time when we can actually try for kids is getting closer every day. Just a little over 4 months away. I wish you would be there to see them. I know you’d be excited for us.

Mr. S is doing well, too. He doesn’t really like planning the future. He’s more about winging it, you know. But he’s looking forward to having the life we always fantasized about. At least, that’s the impression I’m getting. He’s been so wonderful to me. Just like you always said he would.

I hope you are happy, too. I hope Monsieur is treating you well. I haven’t checked in or cyber-stalked you, so I really don’t know. Above all, I hope we both stay happy and live fulfilling lives.

 

Love,

Me.

 

Problem: I still feel that this is too self-centered. That I’m not focusing on the friend enough. I’m struggling to do that. I think I feel it more than I can say it. I’ve never had this much of a problem in expressing myself, except when it came to saying I loved someone so strongly that “love” seemed a pathetic word. “I’m sorry” is neither strong enough nor acceptable.

I want to just end this post by saying that I really enjoy some of these Daily Prompts. And that’s why I chose to do this. Not because I was seeking attention or feeling badly. It just felt so relevant. I really do feel blessed and happy. So, go forth to more uplifting blogs, if that’s your thing. Thanks. 🙂


An Offer I Couldn’t Refuse

I’ve got ten minutes to write this, according to today’s writing challenge. I’ve been watching a lot of the Sopranos with Mr. S and we did view the Godfather while home with the family for Thanksgiving. So, here goes.

I fell in love with Mr. S the moment he started talking to me. It wasn’t that deep, everlasting love at first. Obviously. But I was totally into him. And when he asked me to be his girlfriend ten days after we met, that was it. The offer I couldn’t refuse.

Then, a little over a year later (literally, about 10 days after our anniversary) he asked me to marry him. I wanted to spend the rest of my life with him. And it had become that deep, everlasting love sort of thing. I kept thinking about how lucky I was to get him. And then, two years later, we finally got married. And I’ve never been happier and so far, haven’t looked back. We’re coming up on a measly three months of marriage and I couldn’t imagine my life without him. Honeymoon phase? Perhaps. But the thing is, we got back to our bickering and typical sarcastic, dry remarks to one another about two weeks after getting back from our Honeymoon trip to Napa Valley. Honestly, we argued a bit on the actual trip as well. You really can’t spend an entire week with no one but one person and have everything be perfect, blissful joy. Especially if plane travel is involved. And three stops along the way to the actual place. And having to wake up at 4am to get to the airport. Twice.

This is not the only offer I couldn’t refuse. When I was offered my current job, I jumped at it. Why not? I was working at Macy’s and pretty much completely miserable after a year and a half. I loved my coworkers and 9 months out of the year, it wasn’t a difficult job. I was just so bored. And sick of people treating me like I was a total idiot. I had my degree and I was working toward my Paralegal certificate at another school. And here I was, being addressed like I was a total failure. Most of my coworkers were also working on their degrees at University. The ones who weren’t? They weren’t idiots, either. These people could calculate your change and your tax without even blinking. They could count money faster than your stereotypical “Jewish banker.” And they knew so many details about the clothes. They could tell you which jeans ran long, which ones wouldn’t shrink in the wash, and they could tell you which kinds of clothes your loved one might like based on age and their style. These people also were very intelligent. They could debate philosophy and religion and politics without the “formal” education I was privileged enough to receive.

But I had to get out of there. And sometimes, I do wish I still worked at Macy’s. There’s no shame in it, really. If it weren’t for the evil customers, then everything would have been absolutely perfect. And my time is just about up, so let me wrap up by saying I made some good choices accepting the three offers I couldn’t refuse. As if I really had a choice in the long-term, anyway. (Ok, I did, but my life has gone in a much better direction since then.)


Thanksgiving, Scrapbooks, and Violins

I was excited for the Thanksgiving meal with my immediate family, including in-laws. So, when it all went well, I was psyched. Everyone got along (as usual), the food was amazing, watched The Godfather and football, and I got to spend time with my dearest loved ones. And my husband! Our very first married Thanksgiving. He seemed pleased as well. We did NOT go shopping on Black Friday. No particular death wish. We did eat leftover turkey sandwiches and pass out in food comas. It was nice.

Then Saturday and Sunday, Mr. S had to work. He works 12 hour days. So I was home for two whole days all by my little self. Flashback to post “Trying My Hand at Something New.” I mentioned that I was beginning my own wedding album scrapbook. Well, I got fed up with it a few weeks ago and hadn’t touched it until Saturday. I wasn’t even halfway through. But I had the photos in the order I wanted, it was just a matter of picking out paper and little accent-y things, and pasting them down. I finished it on Saturday. I am actually quite proud of how it turned out! Not as pretty as others would have done, but well enough that it makes me smile when I look through it. I even included several pictures of the lost friend. There’s no sense in pretending she wasn’t there or that I don’t care about her. In fact, forcing myself to look at those pictures and remember the whole experience brought me a sense of peace with what happened. Of course, I did have a bit of a breakdown and poor Mr. S had to listen to me cry for an inappropriate amount of time. I blame the wine. But NOW I am at peace.

And then, I figured out how to appropriately tighten the bow for my violin. I’m struggling so much less with hitting the right strings. Also, I am making progress with hitting the G, F#, and E on the D string. I can hear a scale easily, having been in band for 8 years and doing scale after scale after scale ad nauseaum. So, I know when the notes are right or wrong when I do the ascending and descending scale notes. I’m hoping to move forward in the book with Mr. S this week.

In honor of Thanksgiving this month, I’ve been doing the one-thing-I’m-thankful-for-each-day thing. The last day, I’m going to be thankful I have done it and won’t do it anymore. It’s hard to keep listing things! I have SO MUCH to be thankful for, but dangit, there’s only so many one can list or think of after awhile! The thing I’m most thankful for is love. It’s held me together and helped me overcome obstacles, especially lately. I’m also thankful for forgiveness and second (third/fourth/fiftieth/hundred-thousandth) chances. I’ve written people out of my life in the past, but only when I didn’t truly love them. And I know it’s early, but my New Year’s Resolution this year is going to be extremely cliche and also very important: to let that which does not matter truly slide. I need to work on my emotional connections and if I’m not constantly on the offense, maybe they’ll do much better.

It is with optimism that I end this blog post.


Letters to People Who Won’t Read Them

You know how in movies and Dr. Drew tv shows, the therapist/dumb poseur will have the patient/attention-starved, over-the-hill, has-been celebrity write a letter to someone they hurt/hurt them/makes for a really good story line? And then they never mail it? The idea is, you’ll be more honest if you know it’ll never be mailed. The writing itself is supposed to be therapeutic. It’s supposed to get you to open up and express your feelings so they aren’t pressing on the precious, delicate psyche. (Pardon my sarcasm, but I feel like I’m on a roll today).

I have occasionally partaken in this exercise and have found it to do a little something. Last night, I wrote an email I never sent. I thought I was going to send it, but then the potential repercussions started to freak me out so I didn’t send it. If I sent it, the worst thing that would happen? Feeling like crap again. Maybe hurting the situation even more. Didn’t feel like dealing with it. And the worst thing that could happen from not mailing it? Nothing changes. So, nothing changed. Except that I feel better. I mean, I’m still sitting in my pity puddle at my pity party all by my pitiful self. I blame this yucky gray Washington winter weather. But I feel better. And why not? Dr. Drew had to have been a decent doctor once, right? I mean, he got several tv shows. There must have been talent at some point. And some of those techniques are still used, I’m sure. So letter-writing is one of them.

So, wrote an email. Never sent it. Am I moving on? Am I growing as a person? Maybe. We’ll see. I have plenty of time to regress into a pathetic, whiny brat again.

Tomorrow, Mr. S and I begin a grueling 2-hour exodus to the house of my parents to partake in the ritualistic eating of the turkey on Thursday. I won’t be able to access the blog for a few days. Family, you know? But I am hoping I will have some nice experiences to share and maybe get some more photography in. Yes?

I promise to keep practicing my violin as well. And I will keep you posted!


God Bless The Internet

Suffice it to say, I had no idea how complicated it would be to learn the violin. I thought, “oh, you just hold the strings down in the right place and draw a bow across the strings. The hard part will be learning where to put my fingers, how to do the vibrato,” blah blah blah stupid prattle. WELL.

I learned that numbers of fingers on the string actually contribute to the changing of the note. Did not think that would be the case. Makes sense, though. And is probably easier than searching for the exact sweet spot on the neck to hit the note. Frets make life so much easier. But NO. Classical instruments have to be a pain in the butt. It’s the rule.

I also learned that trying to play the violin correctly for the first few times requires a tuner, a lot of patience, and a decent bottle of wine afterwards. Per person.

Struggling with my many setbacks combined with a rare urge to continue pursuing something difficult. So I Googled. “How do you put the shoulder rest on?” “Why am I hitting the wrong strings?” “How do I tighten my bow?” “How do I hold the bow?” “Why, God, didn’t you make this easier?” (Ok, that one couldn’t be answered by Google… unless I was searching for funny memes to cheer me up. In which case, total success.)

I am thankful for the internet. And for the people who have been offering advice and support. Thank you guys!


And the Adventure Begins

I have to say, I was extremely nervous walking into the music shop today. The only times I have ever bought instruments (and by this I mean my parents purchased them) was for school or for someone else.

When I was about to go into 4th grade, my parents bought me a beginner saxophone, a Bundy II from the Selmer company. We were looking at ads for them. Not sure if these ads were in a newspaper or what, because internet had only just become active. (That makes me feel so old.) But I wasn’t much involved in that process.

The second time, I’m pretty sure we bought online. An intermediate saxophone when I was in 7th grade. Intermediate saxophone means there is an extra key, a high-F, I think. A beautiful Yamaha. Again, not so sure about it the process.

The third time was buying a bass guitar for my dad. My mom wanted to surprise him for his birthday. It was a gorgeous red Epiphone and it came with a nice amp. My dad was always a Gibson man as opposed to Fender, and Epiphone is the generic version of Gibson. He was pretty happy. And I picked the darn thing out, so I felt pretty good about it. Other than that… nothing.

So, Mr. S and I strolled into the Hugo Helmer Music Shop. The salesman brought out two beautiful used violins that we are now renting to own. See pictured below:

 

The amount of money we’re paying for these per month is enough money to give to the Christian feed-African-kids fund (Christian Fund?) per month. Guilt trip, much?

The first one is Mr. S’s. It’s supposed to be nicer, more expensive. The second one is mine and I chose it because it’s a prettier, darker color. Silly, I know. But it was my choice, so there.

Mr. S is definitely catching on faster than I am. It’s quite a blow to my ego. I am, after all, the musically talented one. So I thought. But I love him so I’ll forgive him.

I’m having trouble getting the right strings. I mean, I intuitively know how to tune the darn thing. I was good at that. But when it comes to running the bow over the D-string, I just cannot seem to avoid the G-string. (Ok, giggle. But let’s move on.)

Also, my hand, after only 30 minutes of messing around, feels like a darn claw. And the chin rest really hurts my shoulder. And I can’t figure out how to get the darn shoulder thingy on there.

But, enough whining. I’m actually enjoying the process. I wasn’t this slow at picking up saxophone. (I know, I know. It’s only been thirty minutes of playing around.) I’m still excited to learn it. We were able to tune the violins up enough that we didn’t sound like dying cats when we managed to play the same strings at the same time. Win!

And here are pictures of us posing as if we’re actually playing the violins.

 DSC04185

Wish us luck!


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