Thursday, April 18, 2013

I'm Oscar!

"A husband, a husband... where will we find a husband?!" This is a phrase made famous by Ornella Muti in the not-so-famous film, Oscar.  Despite having an all-star cast, the movie flopped in the theaters; however, I think it's a piece of comedic genius. 

The reason I think of this movie so fondly is because I'm about to get married, and my very-soon-to-be husband and I have the same taste in films.  We actually have the same taste in a lot of stuff, some important and some not.  I know for certain that I can share everything with Chad, though.  Finally, I found my lobster.  Ahhhhhhhh, I can just think of him and instantly feel loved, calm, happy, and safe.  He truly is the love of my life. 

I know it's been over a year since I posted in my blog, but I've been busy.  This past year has been SOMETHING!  Let's make this quick, like the short-short version:
  • My job changed without me knowing
  • I got more involved with Gaelic football and running
  • I met Chad
  • I tried to get a different job
    • I got sued for trying to get a different job
      • I still work for the same company
        • I got a better position (still with lots of travel)
  • I took an awesome trip to Grand Cayman
  • Chad moved in
  • We had a great Thanksgiving holiday
  • Miserable trip to London over Christmas
  • Oh, more travel with work
  • Chad and I got engaged!
  • More work travel
  • We planned our wedding
And that brings us current.   So, while I was busy neglecting my blog, life was happening, and continues to happen :)  I'll write more about Chad in another post.  He's great, great for me, and we're great together.  I can't wait to be Mrs. "the Chad"!!!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Compulsion

What compels you?  That is to ask, what drives you to... do better, be better, be more, be less, be moderate or exaggerate?  Simply put, what is "it"?  I've been thinking about my driving forces and the things that move me... whether it's an experience, or a conversation, or something I read.  All of those are contributing factors to my movements and each happening helps me shape the way I feel about specific situations.  So, what is my "it"?

I remember growing up in my parents' house, the first house we had when we moved to Texas.  It was a corner lot in a nice neighborhood and had a huge yard where my big brother and I could play and not have any cares in the world.  I aspired to be so much like my big brother because I thought he hung the moon.  He was so good at everything he tried... and I wanted to be just like him.  Hell, I even wanted to learn how to pee standing up because that's what my brother did. 

Our parents loved us very much and were very careful not to show favoritism, and they did a really good job, honestly.  Brother was Dad's little man and I was Daddy's little girl, while Brother was the apple of Mom's eye and I was Mom's sunshine.  They never hesitated to show us and tell us that they loved us.  They disciplined us when we acted up, which I believe is another form of love.  They wanted us to succeed and excel in life and learn right from wrong early.  They loved Brother and I enough to give us rules.

Our parents also celebrated in all our accomplishments and always encouraged our ideas and inspirations, no matter how fleeting.  Brother seemed to stick to sports, and for longer than I did, but he went through baseball, soccer, track, basketball, and wrestling.  Dad even coached Brother's baseball and soccer teams.  Brother was a natural athlete and a naturally bright and focused kid, so his accolades in both arenas were easily attained and our parents proudly displayed his trophies.  On top of that, Brother was first chair UIL in band and graduated Cum Laude from university.  I was a little different and less focused.  Ballet, gymnastics, ice skating, softball, track, cheer leading, soccer, modeling, painting, and guitar.  I had a couple trophies, but no degree, and I never really stuck to anything for very long.  My interest was all over the board... but Mom and Dad were proud of both of us equally, if for nothing else than that we tried.  We may not have always been the best at everything we tried, but we tried nonetheless and didn't give up. 

I have two "it"s.  The first of my two "it"s is love.  Love is something x infinity that moves me.  Love gives me hope, it puts a bounce in my step, it encourages me to face the day, and it makes me appreciate Christmas and children (inside joke).  My second "it" is pride, but more in the sense of pride as a reflection, like a proud desire.  I want people to see that I take pride in what I do, how I treat others, and how I care for my things.  And, I crave pride.  I want to be someone who makes others proud to know me.  I want to be a person of upstanding moral fiber and quality character, dependable, reliable, and steadfast. 

I would like to think that these two "it"s are why I'm as successful as I am today.  I have such amazing people surrounding me!  My friend base is widely diversified, each of the groups with their own varying talents and gifts.  My brother is one of my favorite people and I have a great relationship with him.  I have a best friend and lots more who care deeply about me.  And, I have a successful career and I'm valued as an employee.  Love and pride, because my parents showed me love and pride, and I desired their love and wanted to make them proud of me in return. 

If I were to combine these two "it"s, would it make one "it" of approval?  Is that what really compels me?  Do I seek the approval of others as though they were my parents?....

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Mother, May I

I had lunch with my best friend today and we discussed the topic of family obligations and our attitudes toward them.  So while we indulging in vindaloo, garlic naan and Kingfisher, we realized that our opinions on the subject weren't very different... We did realize, however, that I was being a royal brat and extremely selfish. 

My mom is going through a rough time right now and she needs me.  After about 17 years of marriage, my mom has finally decided to get a divorce from her husband.  I honestly couldn't be happier with her decision to get the divorce, but it's going to take some time to get everything set up to where her husband doesn't fight it.

Background on my mom's husband.  He's a real sorry excuse for a human being, and he had my mom fooled from the very get go.  Mom met "HT" (husband two) through friends of hers and within two weeks they were engaged and married.  I think they had one date; they went to the State Fair.  Mom almost  kicked him out after a few weeks of them being married because HT had a bad habit of telling Mom how to raise my brother and me.  Let me just get to the laundry list of why I don't like him:
  • he has a gambling problem
  • has an alcohol problem and is in AA
  • he defrauded my mom, stole her identity, and took out credit cards in her name
  • he threatened my mom
  • he threatened my brother and me
  • I've paid for their overdrafts on their bank accounts, starting when I was in high school
  • he's bipolar and a psychopath, and a pathological liar
  • he trashes everything he touches
Because of HT, Mom has filed for bankruptcy three times, had her house foreclosed on, one of her cars was repossessed, she barely survives paycheck to paycheck, and now she lives in a tiny apartment. 

So...  Obligation v. willingness.

I am not obligated as Mom's child to help her, but I am willing (now).  Technically, Mom was required as my parent to raise me until I was of legal age, and that's what she did.  When I was 17, I left home and I really haven't looked back... mainly because of HT.  But conversely, if Mom needs me now, I'm not obligated or required to help her.  As Mom's child, I get a pass.  Is that fair?

Going back to my lunch with my best friend: I was talking to her about my attitude and how I felt that it was wrong of Mom to ask for my help... and expect it.  I told my best friend that I thought Mom's expectation of me helping her somehow breached a boundary in the parent/child relationship.  Heaven forbid I be supportive and honor my mother by helping her through this VERY rough time in her life, oh no.  Mom did more than just what was required in my upbringing, she nurtured me and cared for me, showed me love and what it was to love, and contributed to the person I am today.  So, after talking through all that with my best friend, I changed my attitude toward helping Mom from that of obligated to one more willing. 

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Bitch

The funny thing about my writing is that I only feel inspired to write when my emotions are in a state of turmoil and I have no other outlet.  It used to not be that way.  I guess my tastes and emotions have evolved with my continued process of aging.

Elton John sang,
"I'm a bitch, I'm a bitch
Oh the bitch is back
Stone cold sober as a matter of fact
I can bitch, I can bitch
Cause I'm better than you
It's the way that I move
The things that I do"

Catchy, isn't it?  Well, I used to think so, too.  Don't get me wrong, this song had its place in history, but I think it's ready for retirement in my life. 

I thought I could do it all.  I went out on my own when I was 17, and then I got married and relinquished part of my control to someone else and started growing with that someone.  Then, the divorce happened and I was forced to put up all these walls and protect myself and guard against anything I thought was out to get me or harm me.  I had only myself to rely upon for anything that I needed or wanted.   I was forced to do everything on my own; I had to be everything for myself.  And, I think that was when part of the "nice girl" inside me died... and I was the one who killed her. 

I thought I was so smart, and that all my years of therapy and self-reliance had finally paid off.  I so desperately wanted to think that.  Notice the word, "desperate," as it's the recurring theme here.  And at the beginning of this fine new year, I found myself all alone, yet again. 

I face the truth today that the person I love and have so desperately wanted to be my mate does not love me back.  I've loved him since the second I set eyes on him just over 6 years ago.  We met, fell in love, had a blissful time together, and then I ruined it.  At that point I think it was the daddy issues that got in the way.  I needed to hear that I was beautiful and that he loved me, audibly, every day, preferably in the morning.  I thought that anyone who was crazy about me would be willing to do this.  I didn't know or realize that it was just a hoop, a band-aid, that I needed so I didn't have to deal with the fact that my dad had just died.  My lover was nice and told me that I had needs that he just couldn't meet, but it was actually a hoop and he knew it, too.  That hoop was just one of the things in our relationship that I did to drive my lover away. 


I kept asking myself why all my relationships go south... well, it's me.  I gave truth to the old cliche, "It's not you, it's me."  It really was me.  Only a few times has it been my mate's fault that our relationship ended, like when I discovered he had been lying to me, or that he stole from me, or that he was just using me and didn't really care about me at all.  But, usually I pick genuinely good men to date.  For example, take this last one.  He was a gem; kind heart, well-educated, sense of humor, great looking.  And I drove him away... how did I do that, what happened?  I found out what happened... 


I read this article in a magazine shortly after my most recent relationship ended and it made me think and analyze my life more than I do already.  The conclusion: I've been a bitch.  It was a revelation, epiphany, a self-realization of mass proportions.  It's been all about me; my job, what I want to do, my things, my time.  I've been spending too much time thinking about me... like my weight, my clothes, my hair, my skin.  I've just been a selfish brat.  And, I've been angry, which has turned me into a bitch.  I was angry at everything!  I was angry that I had to travel and give up some of my life for my job, that I moved into an apartment after I finally felt at home in my house, that I didn't feel like I had enough time to devote to my friends or hobbies.  Hell, I was angry that there was too much violence in the news media, that other people's opinions on Obama's presidency were disparaging, and I if one more person tried to talk to me about the world's next big economic superpower, I was going to scream.  I was angry at everything, ANGRY... at EVERYTHING!  Where. Would. It. Stop?  

I spent years in therapy after my dad passed away, and some of the tools I got from those sessions actually work.  I do have a positive self-image, so I don't need to worry about my weight or how I look.  I do have a good job and I do have wonderful friends who love me and care about me, so I don't need to worry about that so much; it's kind of taken care of itself.  So, the apartment isn't everything I wanted, but it's convenient to work and everything I like to do.  And I'm renting out my house, so I should feel good about that since I get to keep the house and continue to build equity.  And I don't really care about the socioeconomic and social state of the government or world, so I just need to lighten up about all that stuff.  Don't get me wrong, it's important and I recognize that, but it doesn't need to make me angry.  If it's outside my control, why should I bother myself with getting angry about it?

So, a new year, a new me.  Now granted, this might not fix all my problems, and it won't make the love of my life love me back, but it's a start.  I want a life mate and it would be awesome if he found me sooner than later... and it's kind of hard to be appealing to a man when I'm a bitch, so I'm changing that. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Recurring Theme


Bad dreams, a sense of longing, anxiety... these all have to do with the job... that's the recurring theme.

I thought a lot about my mom today. Probably because I watched a really depressing episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Season 5, where Buffy loses her mom. It made me think of how my mom isn't getting any younger and frequently worries about me and my travels. Yet another work thing. During that episode of Buffy, I was thinking about how I would deal with the death of my mom. There's just no telling, and I really don't want to think about it, honestly.

I also thought about my boyfriend. I love him so much and if ever things between us were to get more serious, I would want for him to know all my final wishes and vice versa. Listen to me, I haven't even met the parents yet and I'm talking about forever. Today was an odd day for us. I admitted my fear about being disappointed by not keeping promises. That seemed to really hurt his feelings because we're planning a big trip to Japan together. The trip is only a few months away and he still doesn't have a passport. I told him that I wasn't going to invest in a ticket to Japan until he had his passport application in the mail, and he assured me that he would take care of that this week. I told the boyfriend that the fear of being hurt by broken promises is from my Dad. I think he understands from his own experiences but he didn't say anything like that.

So I missed my best friend's party this past weekend... a party that she and her husband specifically planned around my travel schedule. I couldn't live without the boyfriend for this past weekend (because it had been over 2 weeks since I last saw him) so I called him crying and he bought me a ticket to go see him in his current town of residence... something like 1,100 miles away from Dallas. Well, I should have called my bestie and discussed this with her before the boyfriend bought me the ticket, but I didn't. And I left her feelings a wreck because I deserted her and her husband on the day of their party. We talked it out and we're good but I need more of my bestie in my life. Again, it's the job that keeps me away.

I'm trying to think of ways around the inevitable, but it seems that finding a new job is really the key. The boyfriend and I both need them. I like my job, but the travel is murder! Let me know if you're hiring, LOL!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Craziest Part About It


Here are some highlights from my recent trip to Hawaii:
  • It's a long-ass flight
  • EVERYTHING is expensive
  • The beaches are meh
  • The food is great if you like seafood
  • The sun is really strong down there
  • The roads are crappy, at best
From the central time zone, where I live, Hawaii is about a 5-6 hour time change depending on which part of the year you decide to go... This time it happened to be 5 hours difference, which was just enough to make my senses go crazy. I was wide awake at 4 am most days... and that was sleeping in! Finally, the last day there, I was able to sleep in until 7:30 am. Consequently, when you wake up before dawn, you can't really stay up much past dusk... fail! The flight from Dallas to Maui was about 7.5 to 8 hours. The flight from Maui to Oahu was about 3 hours, but I'll elaborate on that later. And the flight from Oahu to Dallas was about 7.5 hours. I was ill prepared for this...

As far as the price goes, the Hawaiians like to nickel and dime you to death. I don't think I've ever been on vacation where an additional hour in your hotel room (delayed check-out) would cost $75. That's on top of the regular room charges and the additional $25 per day for taxes and fees and such. Thank goodness Internet was included with the room or they would probably charge me for that per minute. If you dined at the hotel restaurants, they tacked on a dining fee in addition to taxes. But, enough about the hotel... I don't think we had one meal that was under $50. Breakfast was $60, lunches were generally $80 or $90 and dinners were around $130 or more. Pack of cigarettes = $11. Advil, 20ct. = $7. Beer = $6. Cocktail = $12. Pint of OJ = $4. OUCH!!! After a while this stuff adds up! I think total, with airfare, the hotel room, activities and meals, we spent about $7k in Hawaii for two people for a week.

In Ka'anapali, there's not really much of a beach. The beach really only exists in front of one resort, the Alii. Kapalua has no beaches. Paia had one beach and it's in front of Mama's Fish House and Inn. Wailuku has no beaches. Not really impressed with that selection. The Riviera Cancun in Mexico totally had better beaches. I found myself comparing Hawaii to Mexico lots during this trip...

One thing Hawaii specializes in is seafood. Almost all the seafood is caught locally and fresh that day or the day before, which is a huge bonus. They had an abundance of Ahi tuna, Ono and Opah. That was pretty much the selection while we were there. I had the best fish and chips ever at a place called the Hula Grill in Whaler's Village... the fish was solid Mahi Mahi and it was delectable! Pretty much anywhere you can grab a Mai Tai, do it! We ate at this place called Mama's Fish House (which is supposed to be the best thing ever) and we were disappointed. It was good but not the best... but the price would suggest otherwise. I was in a little bit of sticker shock after I got the bill.

I got sunburned my first day there... just saying. I'm kind of fair but I put on #50 SPF and the sun still got through.

We almost died! We decided to rent a car and go exploring around Maui. We took the road from Ka'anapali north to Kapalua and then continued on to Wailuku. This was the biggest mistake we made the entire trip. The road on the northwestern most part of Maui is not safe for tourist travel. It's one lane, on the side of a mountain/cliff, with no guardrail, two way traffic, and falling rocks. We were forced to stop several times and move as close to our side of the mountain as possible just to let opposing traffic through. Twice, we were forced to stop to let Maui Police around us (both times we were making right-hand hairpin turns up the side of the mountain). Once, and this is priceless, we had to reverse... literally back up on a single lane "road" on the side of a cliff... to let a fire truck pass us. A FIRE TRUCK! I found it a little ironic that the three times we almost were seriously injured were by emergency vehicles.

Here's how the plane ride home went... We delayed take-off because Dallas was about to win the NBA finals. Yea, Dallas won! Now, let's get this bird in the sky, right? Right, for about 1.5 hours before we had "electrical trouble" and had to make an emergency landing in Honolulu. Yeah, that's on a completely different island and further away from Dallas! And, come to find out, it was the engine that had a problem... So, after we all deplane, it takes American Airlines another 1.5 hours to figure out that we're not leaving that night, so they put everyone up at the Ala Moana hotel in downtown Honolulu. It wasn't too bad. AA gave us vouchers for the hotel, taxis and food so we were set. The really great thing about that is they were able to fix the plane, they rerouted the people with connections to other flights and the plane was only about half full the next day when we left. Plus, our flight attendants were super cool and gave us all the free booze we wanted.

So, here's what I learned: Stay at the Alii or in Paia if on Maui, drink lots of Mai Tai's, buy your own food at the Safeways and bring your own alcohol, the Road to Hana is a bitch and really tiring, Mama's Fish House is meh, surfing is overrated, parasailing is kinda cool, even McDonald's is more expensive in Hawaii, the Luau is a joke unless you go to Lahaina where they have a real one, the Seven Sacred Ponds look like landfills, Wailea is a shopping mall, there's lots of theft and you should never leave valuables in the car, and always fly first class on flights longer than 5 hours. I still would have rather gone to Mexico...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

New Year, New Look


A couple things have gotten a face lift this year. My blog is just one of them.

I have decided to embrace the changes that will rapidly be overtaking my life. No, I didn't get plastic surgery or anything like that, but I've decided to proactively change a few things, whether it be appearance or otherwise.

I got new luggage for my travels. After all, I needed some good, reliable luggage that could stand a beating. Since I'm going to be traveling the majority of the time with my new job, I figured an investment in luggage was warranted.

I decided to clean house! I started with the top of my house and worked down to the first floor cleaning and clearing out everything that I knew I wouldn't need or want in the next 2-5 years. I kept things like tax documents, t-shirts for posterity, and blankets. I decided to donate or toss things like my old luggage, miscellaneous clothing and shoes, and gadgets I have no need or use for (but somehow purchased or acquired over the years). After all that was finished, I vacuumed, swept, mopped, and disinfected my entire house. The ironic thing is that I got a sinus infection while doing so.

Since I donated several articles of clothing, it was time to go shopping. Now, I do most of my shopping online since just about everything I want to buy is out on the internet and it prevents me from having a panic attack because I'm around too many people at once. I bought a few new sweaters for work, some cheap jewelry, and leggings. I was really excited about the leggings because I never thought I would be the person who wears them. Yeah, the leggings are really comfy!

I became automated. A few of my bills were still set up for mail checks or required me to manually log in to get them paid. Life is so much easier when you have paperless statements and automated funds transfers. I like simplicity.

With all these changes, I feel accomplished and that I am very organized. New year, new look.