Monday, December 6, 2010

Yeeps, it's December.

That was fast.  We're coming up on our anniversary, a whole year almost of married *bliss*.  (Ha ha.  I'm too pragmatic for words like bliss.  It's not bliss.  It's a marriage, and that means work.  Just saying.  I hate Gushy McGushersons that prattle on about love and fate and whatEVER, it's like, get over it, who's scooping the cat crap and who's taking out the trash??  THAT'S marriage.  Again, just saying.)

Things that we have done together in this last year include:
  • Buying our house.  That one was sort of a big deal.
  • Painted and decorated our new house.  Less arguments than there could have been.
  • Moved into our house. Sweaty, swear-filled, and super tiring, but worth it.
  • Gone to Disney World.  Sweaty, swear-filled, and super tiring, but worth it. ; )
  • Added a ceiling fan to the bedroom.  He'll say he did this one alone.
  • Bought appliances for our kitchen.  Fought over how to clean the stove.
  • Got our first car "together."  It's mine but I let him use it. ; )
  • Celebrated my last birthday in my 20's. How the hell did I get this old???
  • Celebrated the completion of his first year of his 30's.  Don't mention it to him.
  • Joined a gym.  His cholesterol, my weight, our mutual mood of lethargy.
  • Got new furniture for our house and painted our den.  Swear-filled.
  • Bought a snowblower and figured it out. Swear-filled and smelling of gasoline.
  • Changed the light fixture in the upstairs guest room. He 'did this one alone' too.
  • Took our nephew to Rockford to visit with friends. Felt like grownups.
  • Discovered that he IS in fact, literate, and DOES enjoy reading.  Breakthrough.
  • Spent a week at a Wisconsin fishing lake.  He fished, I cooked, all were pleased.
  • Got all our wedding thank-you's out in a decent time frame.  YES!
  • Got our tax return back - woo hoo filing married!!!!
  • Got our homebuyer credit money - woo hoo buying a house for the first time!
  • Went to some shows at the casino.  Fought over gambling.  Won some, lost some.
  • Decorated our house for the holidays. Still in process.  Not optimistic for that one.
  • Made two new flower beds in our backyard.  Still not good at gardening.  : /
  • Bought lots of new tools that he needed.  Still looking for projects to use them on.
  • Tried lots of new foods, some at home, some at restaurants.  Yay, winter squash and sushi! (Not in the same meal...)
  • Hosted a successful Thanksgiving dinner.  Not on Thanksgiving. 
  • Quit a job, got a new job, went back to the old job.  He thought I was crazy.
  • Got all our wedding pics ordered.  In July.  Seven months late.  : /
  • Navigated the oft-stormy waters of family politics.  Gross.
  • Hosted our first houseguests from out of town - good times with great friends!
  • Debated whether to get a dog.  Jury's still out.
  • Handed out Halloween candy to our first trick-or-treaters.  All 8 of them.
  • Went to see Lady Gaga!!!!  SHYEAH!!!! 
  • Celebrated 3 years together in June.  Does the anniversary clock reset at the wedding??  Hmmm....
  • Did lots of home-improvement.  As in, I pick it out, and he makes it happen.
  • Donated to charity.  Finally had enough money between us to do it.
  • Combined our assets....finally had enough faith between us to do it.
I'm sure there are plenty more.  Our collaborations so far this year had everything to do with putting down our roots, establishing ourselves as a couple, setting financial policies and goals, and working out the differences between us that you don't think about when you're "in love" and all schmoopy with an engagement ring on your finger.  We've always functioned as a well-oiled machine, I talk, he observes, I plan, he executes, I break the toilet, he fixes it, etc.  Our symbiosis has been very organic in that way.  But we've noticed (as he put it yesterday) that when you spend every day with the same person, you're bound to figure out what they do that irritates you.  I irritate him every day, and he does the same to me.  He's grumpy and an emotional driver, and I'm neurotic and an emotional....well....everything.  He blows his nose in the shower.  I take too long to get out of the car while he waits for me in the rain.  He has an annoying habit of "warming up his hands" by sticking them in his pants.  I have an annoying habit of insisting we eat dinner at the table and not on the couch. 

But, without trying to be all gushy and *blissful* about anything....the things we do that are annoying to each other are super minor.  For the most part, we're a good team.  We each take our turns being the spoiled one.  Because at the end of the day, yes, there's cat crap to scoop up and there is trash to take out and it's busy and crazy and WHATEVER, but we both want to make the other one happy, and that's probably one of the keys to success.  Our little domestic life is established, and our "house" as a metaphor for our life together is tidy and organized but comfortable, and lived-in.  This next year, I hope we'll focus on our family, the Wilcox-Schowalter family, and if that means a dog or a baby or a business.......I hope for at least as much joy and success as we've had this first year.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Animal fat and other ways to die.

So Curt got his cholesterol test results back the other day, and yep....they're....bad.  Like over 250 bad.  So we're embarking together on an odyssey of trying to get them down by methods other than him taking a statin medication.  His doctor actually didn't even suggest him getting on statins, which I found infuriating, because his numbers are bad with a capital B...but maybe his doc wants him to rely on his youth and general good health and just suck it up, Princess, and do it with diet and exercise.  SO.  Diet and exercise we will.

I mean, like it's some kind of secret that I'm a chubby bastard myself, so it's not like this hasn't been a long time coming for both of us..... If we want to live to see 50, I'm guessing some fundamental things have to change, namely our (previous!!!) sedentary lifestyle that consisted of getting up from bed, sitting in a car all the way to work, sitting all day at work, sitting all the way home, and then collapsing on the couch in a heap, only moving to get up to go lie down in bed.  We managed to get to the gym 3 times so far this week, with a plan to go Sunday as well.  So 4 out of 7 days isn't bad for a first week.  I am not trying to burn either one of us out by jumping in with both feet and abusing my lard to the point where I HAVE to slow down.  I'm excited because Curt is showing interest in going to the classes they offer, like yoga and guided weights, so that's VERY cool....  We'll probably do some swimming too at some point.  My goal is to experience as many different ways to move my body as possible, and not get stuck in any ruts.  Progress when you start working out can go so slowly, and I don't want to get bitter because my 30 minutes on the treadmill EVERY. DAMN. DAY. isn't seeming to make a difference.  You know??  I think the more we try to do, the more fun we'll be having, regardless of visible progress being made, and that's progress in itself. 

Also, it's an excuse to go buy new gym shoes and a some sporty clothes, so I'm quite pleased with that.  : )

The dieting thing.........I'm approaching it less from a restriction standpoint and going to focus on making healthy choices MOST of the time.  I don't think deprivation will ever work for me, but luckily, the things I enjoy eating most are things they say you should eat.....I just have to watch portions and be reasonable about it.  I mean, I have dieted where I felt massive anxiety about upcoming events and how I'd handle dieting in certain situations.....and that's just altogether too much focus on food.  I'm trying to make the changes to being more active and hoping that sort of naturally funnels itself into making my relationship with food a little healthier... 

I'm very lucky that Curt is on board with things like subbing mushrooms or beans for meat, eating lots of veggies, doing soy crumbles or veggie burgers, etc., because he wants to get his cholesterol down and lose weight too.  This would be a losing battle if he weren't able to let go of bacon!!!  ; )  And he's lucky to have a wife who is incredibly motivated to be creative in the kitchen and find things that are generally healthy so they can have a pinch of crumbled bacon on top and not blow the whole day.  And we're both very lucky to live in the internet world where finding easy, tasty recipes is just a couple clicks away and search parameters can limit your results to only things you should be eating... 

So overall, we're both feeling good about making these changes.  I'm feeling rejuvenated by the idea that I can make better choices, and he's feeling like the time has come to grow up and let the cookie dough blizzards go.  So together, we're feeding off each other's enthusiasm, and the mood boost of working up a decent sweat isn't too shabby either!  Here's to hoping that we stay happy and motivated about climbing this mountain - together!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Snow your blow.

This weekend we had to get a snow blower.  Our first. More of a power auger than a snow blower, I think, but it worked! The end of the driveway was plowed in about 3 feet deep, so I had to try a couple times to get up the driveway when I got home. The inertia of having to slam through the hill of snow took away too much to get up the slippery ass driveway which was still covered in snow.....so I had to try a couple times and my tires were still spinning. Curt got home and couldn't even get through the snow with the Sonata. So we street parked that and went to go get the blower. Got a shovel too. Came home, dug out, got the Sonata in the garage, and we're good to go.

However....it was hilarious comedy of errors. Curt's like, "Read the manual....tell me what it says to do...." HUH?!?!? YOU read it, YOU'RE the one going to be using the thing right now!!!!  So I was paraphrasing it for him, which was challenging, because of course, whatever he NEEDED to know wasn't what I was reading, and what I was reading, he was like, "Yeah, yeah, but what ELSE does it say???" I'm like, JESUS. Read it your damn self!!!!!  THEN he kept driving the blower into the deepest, heaviest, wettest snow possible, which would effectively choke it out or whatever and it would turn off.  That happened a few times.  Like a half dozen.  I was stuck at the top of the driveway doing a mediocre job of shoveling, because I'm not allowed to go on the driveway when it's slippery because it's at like a 90 degree angle to the street and I fall on my head on dry, flat sidewalk.  (True story.)  He went up the side of the driveway and I heard a terrible chewing noise and accused him of going on the grass, which he vehemently denied. (For the record....the next day, upon inspection...yes.  Grass chewed up.  But to his credit, he did a VERY THOROUGH job.)  Good times. Little husbandy-wifey bonding time. Ah well, it got done.

All our neighbors left their driveways snowy, which I thought proved our intellectual superiority.......and then the next morning, I woke up, and it was all melted anyway.  ACH!!! BUT - - we did have to get rid of the massive snow wad at the end of the driveway to get the car up, AND our driveway is much steeper than any of our neighbors, so we had to clear it to get the car up.......so YEAH. SUCK IT, stupid neighbors. >:(

Nothing like a little bonding time in the sleet, smelling of wet wool and gasoline and burning plastic to make a couple realize all the reasons they're in love. 

Ha.  Ha.  HA.  ; )

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Who pooped in your Cheerios?

A bit of fragrance always clings to the hand that gives roses.  ~Chinese Proverb

Today I took a call from someone who shall remain nameless who basically chewed me out.  Due to something that I was literally the middle man on, and had no control over whatsoever.  Talk about "don't shoot the messenger," I was practically this dude's shooting gallery!!!  It's amazing to me the way that people will talk to each other....like I'm the reason for the kerfluffle in question??  Or even worse, that we're all acknowledging that this isn't my doing....but you're still going to read ME the riot act???  It could be domino effect, I guess...I always try to be sympathetic to someone acting like that, like maybe THEY just got masticated about something so they're paying it forward?  But that is only an explanation, not a justification.  I choose to stop it.  I usually do.  I pull myself away from the simmering of my irritation and I just stop the dominoes.  I don't think it's fair to the next person I have to deal with that I whip a grudge on them just because someone did it to me.  I mean, jeez. 

Treat everyone with politeness, even those who are rude to you - not because they are nice, but because you are.  ~Author Unknown

I don't know where I pull it from, but I just.....can't be the reason someone else has a bad taste in their mouth.  I'm not saying I'll be a doormat, but so help me, if I can, I'm going to treat people well because I'm hoping somehow, somewhere, someone (God??) will see it and say, "Aha, a good person, one brings light to the dark corners of human interaction...." and find it valuable.  I don't know.  It might be Christian, it might just be stupid naivete, but I will not let the world turn me into the kind of person that calls someone up and kicks them in the face through the phone. 

It's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Why today is funny.

I had a bite of a chocolate cookie earlier.

Just a minute ago, I went potty.

When I got back to my desk, I felt a pokey, itchy thing in my....undercarriage region.

I readjusted my position...and the pokey-ness got a bit worse.

I...itched...and thought perhaps I had gouged myself.  (Through jeans??  My nails are short!)

I decided to go back to the potty...and when I pulled down my pants, I discovered a cookie crumb. 

Apparently, after surviving for an hour on my bosom, the crumb had made its way down into my undies as I sat down on the potty the first time.

(It was, you may recall, a chocolate cookie, so I was initially horrified to discover a small angular brown chunk in my underwear.  That's why I told you first that it was a cookie crumb, I didn't want you to suffer the hot flush of shame that I felt before I realized it was but foodstuffs.)

If there was any doubt that I can find delight in the mundane, this note should quash it.  Hooray!  It's Crumbs in the Undies Friday!!!!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Letting go.

It's hard to get to the point in life and relationships where you realize that everything you've ever held to be true about certain people might have been just an illusion, fed by your own naivete.  There are certain truths, certain things that I've always believed, things that have rooted me and defined the very way I hope to live my life.  It's like my faith has been shaken.  I would say I never expected this kind of hurt in my life, but I didn't even think to expect it - I literally never even considered it. I couldn't have imagined that I would have to feel the conflicted emotions of making a choice to save myself at the expense of one of the relationships in my life I've always considered sacred. 

Everything else up until this point seems like it was just child's play.  A hero on a pedestal, my sincere belief in the inherent goodness of the relationship, a feeling that I was luckier than most to have an uncomplicated, honest, deep love in my life.  I have always been loyal, fiercely protective, bordering on blinded with devotion....I wouldn't have hesitated, ever, to put myself in harm's way to protect him from harm.  I would have changed places to save any hurt or suffering being inflicted.  I defined myself by this relationship - if I were nothing else in life, I would be good to him. 

It's been coming to a slow, dreadful end for some time now.  I've sacrificed my own feelings so many times I can't even remember them all.  I've tried to be diplomatic, sympathetic, empathetic, understand it in some way that I hadn't yet tried...and I've found that I've tried them all.  It isn't without crushing grief that I realize that the statute of limitations on what I thought was  boundless love has come and gone.  It's less that I am sure that the relationship has ended and more that I'm sure it's passed a certain line in my head and heart that it will never, never recover from.  I'm ashamed, I'm hurt, I feel silly for loving more, always loving more, appreciating that I even had this person still in my life, after everything that could have happened.  I just felt grateful, and then right beside my gratitude, responsible to protect this gift that the universe gave me in being able to keep him around. 

I sit, resigned to the sad knowledge that no matter how much you love a person, how much you think they love you back, you can always be hurt when you assume.  Just because I'm fiercely loyal, deadly serious in my devotion, doesn't mean anyone else is.  You think you'll get as good as you give, and you trust, and you think you're safe...  And the worst part of all is that I know I can't trust the rest of the world, but I felt so sure, so secure, because of our relationship, that he would never, ever make me feel bad... And I was wrong.  I don't expect that he is thrilled with the way things turned out either, but I know, in his position, I would be re-evaluating my choices and trying to figure out how things came to this.  I can't imagine he's losing sleep over it... 

And so, having cried about it, gotten mad about it, ranted about it, and cried some more, it is with a heavy heart that I realize I have to let go.  I have to find a way to preserve myself and my other relationships, and I need to keep reminding myself that this isn't a standoff.  No one's going to break first.  I'm just going to turn around, walk away, and let go.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Mental sidebar.

Everything sounds better with a British accent. 

Even the c-word.

Say it like some fat old dirtbag and you sound like a pig.

Say it with a British accent and it sounds almost...prim. 

I'm just saying.

FALLing down.

I am starting to associate autumn with feeling crazier than a shithouse rat. Last year it was anxiety not about the wedding itself but all the PEOPLE associated with the wedding. This year, it's that I want to punch everyone in the face. I'm not (by nature) an angry person. I don't get worked up as easily as you might think. I mean, I can rant with the best of them, but I'm not like, walking around pissed off all the time. But when I get pissed, I get PISSED. And I'm pissed now, and I can't see the light at the end of the tunnel of me having a forgiving feeling anytime soon. So....how shall I handle it??? I think I will eat my feelings. NO!!! WAIT!!!! BAD JABBA!!!! 
Here's my plan at this point:
  • Get a dawn simulator alarm clock and use it get out of bed in the morning without feeling like hot death.
  • Use the extra time that I have in the morning from getting out of bed on time to make breakfast and lunch for myself.
  • Join the Y again and start attending group fitness classes, and swimming laps. I need to burn calories AND anxiety.
  • Get the "rooms" of my "psychological house" organized. http://www.ninerooms.com/
  • Go get some therapy. Work on figuring things out so I can breathe again.
That's the plan, Stan. I'm crabby, I'm cranky, but at least I have a plan. Sort of. Sounds like a lot of work. : / And I'm so sleeeepy..... zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz........

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Forks in the road.

I'm convinced that the biggest choice you will ever make in life is to marry another person.  It's a no-take-backs kind of situation.  Even if you end up divorced, you can never erase a person who you are legally and spiritually bound to for any length of time.  Whatever transpires in your life after "I do" is irrevocable.  I think that choosing wisely the first time can hopefully insulate you against future pain and grief, but the problem is most people don't realize how truly life-altering a choice like that can be.  For better or for worse, as they say...the key is to find a person who at their WORST, you can still love and respect them and if you had to argue your case for loving them, you'd actually be able to justify your actions. 

People get married out of fear, guilt, bad timing, feeling lonely...people who marry for these reasons never really get to experience the honest joy and liberation of being married for the sake of knowing that the person you're sharing a life with was the person you were waiting for all along.  If you can harbor even a second's doubt...if you can consider that possibly, if things were different, you wouldn't be married to this person, then don't do it.  Everyone can get married, anyone can have a husband or wife, but not everyone waits for their real, true love.  Some people jump at the first chance to feel like someone loves them.  I'm not discounting that you can have love in your life before the real one comes along, and you might even be almost convinced at some points that those loves ARE the real one...your inner voice, however, isn't wrong, and if there is even a slight waver in that voice telling you you're on the right track, heed it. 

I've always heard "You just know..." and finally, after 29 years of life, I can say that it's true.  I "thought" I knew with my first boyfriend (there's a reason "first loves" are so hard to let go...) and if you would have come to me and said "He's not him..." I would have been devastated.  Eight years and some more experience later, I know for sure that I was in love with being in love, and neither he nor I at the time had the tools for being adult partners.  We were kids, playing at being in love with each other.  I think there was honest affection, but if I reflect truly...we never really lived real life together.  We never paid a mortgage together, shopped for groceries together, cried together over a loss...and I don't think we could have.  I thought, more than once, with him, that perhaps I might be pregnant.  At the time, I couldn't think of anything scarier or more terrible, and that in itself is a clue - if the idea of having a baby with someone makes your skin crawl, no matter your circumstances in life, there is a very real possibility that they're not right for you.  Because I know now that whether we were college kids with no money, or the way we are right now, if I were pregnant with Curt, it would be fine.  Life would work itself out.  If that were the situation with my first boyfriend, no amount of financial security would have made any difference at all.  We would have been irrevocably connected and I don't think either one of us really would have ever been happy. 

Who you marry has such a ripple effect on the rest of your life.  Sure, you're the one married to them, sharing a sink and a checking account with them...but every other person in your life will be affected by the person you marry.  Your parents, siblings, friends, neighbors...everyone will know your spouse, and if they like your spouse, then it's easy and it's good.  If they don't, no matter how much you love your spouse, you can't make other people love them too, and that could be seriously dangerous to your other relationships.  A marriage is not an island;  the romantic fantasy that all you need is love and each other is a complete sham.  You will need your parents, your siblings, your friends and neighbors, and if you're alienated from them based on the fact that you've chosen toxicity for your life...that's a problem for you.  It takes a village to sustain a relationship, truly, and if and when children come into the equation...you will absolutely want to have people around who love and support you.  Consider the fact that being married to someone permanently affiliates you with them, and their behavior.  You could be a perfectly wonderful person, but if your spouse is an asshole, you'll be the one who everyone talks about, and guesses as to how such a wonderful person could be married to such an asshole.  Everyone's got faults, I'm not saying I don't, or my husband doesn't.  But life is significantly easier when the person you're married to is a positive reflection of you, and you can be proud to know that.

Sometimes choosing the wrong person can have detrimental effects on you personally, happiness aside.  The right person brings out the best in you.  The wrong person either changes you for the worse, or somehow encourages the less-than-desirable aspects of your personality.  The right person wants to explore life with you, as a companion, as mutual captains of the same ship.  The wrong person wants to steer the ship while you have to continually bail the water out to keep it afloat.  The wrong person can steamroll you, undermine you, cut you down, and diminish you for their own reasons - consciously or unconsciously.  People who want to be with another person so they can control that person, or who want to be the puppeteer of someone's life, under the guise of "helping them," are not good partners.  It takes someone really strong, and really secure, to be a great partner.  Not to say that you can't be weak sometimes, we all are...but if you find yourself continually propping the other person up, or them making you weak, that's a flag. 

My point is....you can choose whatever you want for your life.  But you can always make it easier on yourself by taking a moment to reflect and data gather, and really, REALLY look from as objective of an angle as you can get to.  Ideally, you would be with someone with whom you don't fight (we don't), with whom you feel supported and respected, ALWAYS (we do), and with whom you feel proud (we do.)  I think if you take the "romance" out of the equation, and think practically, it's a lot easier to say, ok, this is a person who I know has my back, this is a person who I could be in the trenches with.  Does being with the person make your life easier, or harder?  Because if the person is the right person for you, the answer is always, ALWAYS unequivocally that they make life easier for you.  If you can say, well, sometimes easier and sometimes harder....then as hard as that may be to face, do you want to spend your life with someone who can make you miserable some of the time?  Who can sporadically take away your joy?  Who can do things or say things without warning that deprive you of peace?  Being married is not for the immature, or the faint of heart.  Marrying another person and having a life with them opens you up to a world of possible heartbreak, and also impossibly wonderful joy.  The real choice is - do you know for SURE, for absolutely certain, that even as time erodes at you, even as the winds change, the tides turn, that this person would only have good intentions?  That they can be selfless for you?  That they would sacrifice their own feelings sometimes for the good of the unit?  That they bring out the best in you?  That it's easier to be with them, that everything good just flows out of your time together, both alone and with other people?  That jealousy and trust are NEVER issues?  That they would try to be graceful, even if they are clumsy, for your sake?  That they would learn from their mistakes in order to make sure you don't have to keep bailing out the water?  These are all things to consider when making that fateful choice, and whatever you choose, it's "your life" to do with what you like, but if it's "your life," then it's your consequences too.  Before you bare your beating heart to someone, be sure they will always take care of it.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Baby makers.

I saw on Facebook today that one of my college roomates just had her first baby.  It's not like none of my other friends have kids...it's more like, wow.  This chick and I had a falling out to rival Caesar and Brutus, and to see that her life is "exactly" what she always planned it to be...it's more of a wake up call than seeing other friends announce new arrivals.  I don't know, I think I always thought of her in the good times as the one most like me, most on the same track as me.  And to be fair, she and her husband have been married longer than Curt and I, it's not like she rushed into having the kid...  I'm glad for her.  I let go of any spite I might have towards her a long time ago...but MAN is it weird to think of her as a mom today. 

She was one half of the "couple friends" that my college boyfriend and I had.  We were us, they were them, and we were the bestest.  She was friends with my boyfriend before I met him, and so naturally, when he and I ended, things got a little sketchy between she and I .  We managed another year or two, but when things ended between her boyfriend (who at the time had become her fiance) and I had the audacity to be dating while she was in pain...well...my life didn't end when her breakup happened any more than hers did when mine happened.  I suffered through my horrible gut wrenching breakup all the while knowing that my "friends" were still hanging out with him.  Hearing about him from them.  Being at home alone because I wasn't invited to my friends' parties.  He got the friends in the breakup.  I moved on, whatever, kept my sanity, and then when her relationship imploded...she apparently expected more sympathy than I felt I owed her.  I mean, whatever...it wasn't meant to be.  But of all my friends that have come and gone with me in life, she was probably the one that stung most when her true colors were revealed.

Fast forward about 8 years, and here I am, out of Michigan, married and happy.  No complaints!  She is in Michigan, married to the first guy she seriously dated after her engagement ended.  He might be the love of her life, how would I know?  All I know is that at the time, it felt like she just continued on with her wedding plans...just with a different groom.  And now they have a baby.  Good for them, I sincerely hope they are happy and maybe life just works in funny ways.  Maybe her breakup was so she could meet this man who is now her husband.  I honestly don't know, and it's none of my business at this point, I guess.  Some people just aren't meant to be together, and some people are...

What happened to her ex-fiance?  Well...he and I got back in touch a little over a year after the breakup.  After all, he was one of my favorite people EVER in college, and I felt like if I wasn't friends with her anymore, then I wasn't cheating on her if I had a relationship with him.  Plus it felt good to know that I wasn't crazy, and they ended for just the reasons I suspected...  He got out of that one just in time...joined the Marines, did his tour, and came home to his high school reunion last fall.  He reconnected with an old friend there, and they were married in May.  Their little boy is due on Halloween.  Super happy ending, and I couldn't be happier for him.  He deserves it.

How about my ex?  Our ending was terrible.  It was finite when it came to our contact with each other, but because of the social intermingling, it seemed to sting for longer than it needed to.  We each moved on, he took up with a girl another friend of ours had been dating (I assume they're no longer in touch...) and then went back to his high school girlfriend for a while.  I assume that didn't work out too well, because now he has a son...with someone else.  Who he doesn't love, from what I hear, but stays with in order to be in his son's life.  Good for him, I know he was always going to be a rad dad, and I bet his little dude is cool as shit.  I bet he is proud as a peacock.  I wish him well, and hope for his kid's sake, he's grown up a lot.  I'm sure he's learning some life lessons, so I can only imagine he's intelligent enough to actually take something away from them.  I chuckle to think of him selling his Camaro for something like a Saturn or something else with car seat anchors.  It's not the way I pictured it, but hey man.  Life takes turns.

So what's my point??  Those were the people I thought would be standing with me at my wedding, as my groom and our attendants.  Those were the people who I thought I'd have my kids with.  They're all doing it...and I'm...not.  I don't know if it's possible to feel left out of a group you're not a part of anymore.  But I sort of feel like, hey guys, we were going to do all that together...

Now I have Curt.  He's the right person for me and for me to have my family with.  I would be miserable with my ex, mostly because he was lacking a few certain essential things that Curt has...like, say, an ability to talk about how he's feeling...or direction in life.  I guess I am just looking back on myself at 22, sitting in my apartment, crying, lonely for a boy that broke my heart, and I want to say "It's ok, it's all out there.  It's not ANYTHING like you've pictured, and the reasons you're crying so hard about losing that perfect picture in your mind won't matter at all someday...hang in there..."  I don't know when I thought I'd be married, probably sooner than I actually did get married, but I'm married now.  I don't know when I thought I'd start having kids, but I'm pretty sure I didn't expect to be 29 and waffling about when to get going...  I think I picture one if not two by now.  Did my friends do it right?  I don't know.  Two thirds of those three babies weren't planned.  At least I have the chance to say I had my kids on my own terms...but I don't know there will come a day when I wake up and go, yeah, today, I'm going to work on making baby.  Do you EVER feel REALLY ready???  I don't know.  I don't imagine you do...I think even if you plan your kids down to the date of conception, you probably still feel mild panic from the date you learn your pregnant until...well...forever.

For now, my uterus is fetus-free.  I realize that some people might think I should have popped out a kid a while ago, and maybe that's true on some level - as in, I'm going to be a pretty decent mom and Curt's going to be a pretty decent dad, and there's no reason for us to be "afraid" of starting our family...  It's just...I've always been a waffler, so terrified of screwing something up that my fear paralyzes me.  I would always rather not try than try and screw up royally...  But there's no take-backs with kids.  Once they're here, you don't get to say, oooh, maybe I wasn't ready.  Do they have a way of sort of MAKING you ready?  That's what I hear, and that's what I suspect.  That you can never really prepare for the entrance of a new little (helpless, pooping, crying) person in your life...but once they make their arrival, whether you like it or not, you love them and you just...find yourself ready for it...it just happens.  So I guess we'll see.  Curt says we're not going to "try," and whatever happens will just be what happens.  I'm not crossing my fingers either way.  I figure I've waited this long...and I'm not in a race.  Thank goodness for the small favors of NOT being affiliated with all my fertile ex-friends, I'd probably have some kind of complex about being childless.  And at least this way, if I want to spend Thanksgiving in Vegas (which I do) then I don't have to worry about a diaper bag!