Archive for March, 2009

Purging

I have been thinking an awful lot about friendships lately, and what I value in the ones I have.  The things I value in friendships are loyalty, honesty, and respect.  One thing I don’t like is judgment.  It’s one of the things I hate about my mother, and it’s not surprising to me that I chose a friend who could be very judgemental of me and those around me.  Namely, boyfriends and other close friends.

I first realized this posessiveness (?) (not really sure if that’s the best word for it) when we were out together and I saw another friend I had known for almost ten years.  I hadn’t seen this other friend in a year, so ran up to give her a hug.  First friend turned to the people we were with and made a snide comment about second friend (who they had never met).  I shrugged it off when I was told about it.

Men have always been an issue as well.  This friend has always had very strong opinions dating, and how I should go about it.  Giving me “advice” that I didn’t always take because I wasn’t comfortable with it.  Putting emphasis on money and possessions and the type of man I “should” date.  I let it slide because I knew my friend had my best interest at heart.  I would sometimes try to remind my friend that I understood what they were saying, but I was trying to find my own way. 

This is a friend that I turned to on my darkest days, and they were always there for me.  However, when I was happy and excited about something, it wasn’t good enough.  So, I blogged about how that made me feel (read:  like shit).  I didn’t mention my friend’s name at all, I didn’t say that I didn’t want to be close to them anymore.  However, apparently it was taken as the end of our friendship.

I have thought and thought about this, and am wondering if I really want or need this person in my life.  What was simply purging some hurt on my blog turned into this friend’s totally defensive, angry rant.  One in which they slammed my other friends, which is something I don’t think I can forgive.  This was seemingly justified by admitting to being judegmental, which isn’t much of a justification to me.  I haven’t spoken to this person, mostly because I don’t know what to say.  I am completely at a loss. 

I have been wondering why I want this person in my life.  Because they have been there for me in the past?  This is true.  When things were bad, this person was my go-to.  They were there, day or night.  However, anytime things were good, they were right there to tear me down.  Do I really want or need that?  When I am happy about something, I want to be able to talk to my friends about it.  I don’t want to be afraid of what they might tell me is wrong with this or that.  I don’t feel like that is wanting a “yes man,” but rather, the other friendships that I have valued are supportive.  It is not my job to tell my friends that they should do something or another, but to support them in whatever way I can.  Is it wrong to expect the same???

I have done nothing, because I don’t want to do something I can’t take back.  However, I’m not sure if this can be fixed or even if it’s worth fixing.  Why would I want that negativity?

On a similar note, WT sent me an email last night.  He had decided he wants to be friends now…that he just needed a little time to get over me.  Well you know what???  You can’t tell me not to contact you, say all kinds of nasty things about me, and then expect me to still be your friend.  Ginger is not playing that game anymore, dude.

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Totally Music Tuesday *UPDATED*

I know, I know, I haven’t done one of these for a while.  I don’t really have time for a “real” post this morning.  I have observations in Bekki’s classroom and then class, so I leave you with this.  It’s called “Day Too Soon” by Sia.  I first heard her music on the show Six Feet Under, and just searched her one day after hearing her song “Breathe” on my itunes, and I came across this song.  Her voice is absolutely beautiful, as are the lyrics. 

Fixed the link!

The Other Woman

Oooh, a new non-protected post…now, what to write about?  How about the ginormous group project that I have to do in the next four weeks for an online class?  Nah, I don’t wanna talk about that.  Maybe the big historical reasearch/literary interpretation of “The Jungle?”  Nope, that shit’s boring!

I have only a few more weeks left of the semester, and as it always is in the end, everything’s getting a little bit crazy.  I feel like I don’t have time to get everything done, and with so many classes, I am perpetually juggling them all.  At this point, I am hoping to simply pass all of them (I know I will at least PASS). 

Ooooh, I know what I can talk about!  I told y’all a few weeks ago that Douche went away to Afghanistan, right?  Yes.  Ok, so it’s been about three weeks since he left.  He called the boys a few times in the week before his departure, and told them how much he missed them, how he would call when he could, etc.  I was completely surprised when I got a text from his wife letting me know that he had gotten to Russia and that she would let me know when he finally got to the desert so I could tell the boys.  Color me shocked.  This is a woman I have not spoken to since I called to try and find out the details of the affair she was having with my husband.  I had told Douche that I wanted to meet her when we swapped the boys for spring break last year, and again last summer, but he kept saying it was a bad idea.  She didn’t come with him on spring break, and in the summer she sat in the truck the entire time.  So, I was very surprised that she was contacting me in any way, shape, or form.

There were a few texts back and forth about Douche and his deployment, and then one day I received an envelope in the mail from her.  It had a money order in it and also a little note that read:

                Here is the alimony for February and March.  Sorry it’s late.  (Insert name here)

Again, I was perplexed.  The schedule for my recieving alimony from Douche has been spotty at best.  I may get it one month, and then not get another check for two months.  I don’t really get bent out of shape about it.  It’s really not fighting over to me, so I usually just let it go.  I was most surprised by the note that was included.  It was so…polite.  I sent her a text letting her know I had gotten it and that I appreciated it. 

A few nights later, my Fireman was over here and we were watching a movie when my phone started ringing.  It was the new wife.  It was about 10:30, so I was immediately scared that something had happened to Douche.  Otherwise, why would she even be calling me at all?  I grabbed my phone and ran upstairs because my phone doesn’t work in the basement.  It was the most bizarre thing to hear her voice for the first time.  It was what I would call very, very “country.”  Think Britney Spears, but more country.  I think she is from Alabama.  Anyway, she told me who it was (like I didn’t know) and asked me if I had gotten any weird phone calls (besides THIS one?!?).  I asked what she meant, and she said that Douche’s dad had gotten a call from someone who was asking all kinds of questions about Douche and his deployment…whether his dad had power of attorney, when he left, when he would be back, etc.  At first, his dad thought that he was talking to a bill collector or something, but then realized it was most likely someone trying to scam soldiers and their families.  He called Douche’s mom, who called Douche’s wife.  His mom suggested that she call me and let me know, in case someone contacted me like that.  (I like to think that I’m smarter than that, but whatever.)  I told her that if I got any strange calls, I would let her know, and thanked her again for keeping my boys updated on their dad. 

It was such a weird experience.  I’m glad, though, that she has initiated some kind of contact.  That can only be good.  That is, unless she starts asking questions about Douche and how things ended…I guess if that happens I will have to try and remain neutral…I don’t want to cause problems for them, despite what was done to me.

Big J even asked if he could text her on his new cell phone yesterday.  They had quite a few texts back and forth.  I’m glad that he likes his step-mother enough to feel comfortable with her, and I know he had questions about his dad’s deployment that I couldn’t answer.  Little J…not so much.  He hasn’t really said much about the whole thing, other than telling his friend’s dad everything he knew about the Army.  We’ve talked about it a bit, but he hasn’t had too many questions about the deployment.  I guess it’s easier not to think about it.

So, that was my first experience with the new wife.  Any of you wanna share your experiences like this?  I’d love to hear them!

Chi-Town, Bitches

Ok, ok, I know you’re all like, “Ginger posted two days in a row?!  OMG!”  I’ve neglected my blog writing/reading duties for a while due to a) school being a bitch right now, and b) being with my Fireman so much in my down time.  I figured I should tell you about our trip to Chicago last week, which was a freakin’ blast!

I had told him before spring break that I really wanted to get out of town for at least a day, and since my boys aren’t on spring break until next week (my mom and Bekki will be helping me out), I had my days free.  I had to get some observations done at the middle school, but we decided that we’d take a day and go to Chicago.  It’s only a two-hour drive, and my parents agreed to get the kids off the bus in the afternoon and get them on it the following morning, so I didn’t have to be home until the boys got home from school the next day.  We weren’t sure if we were staying the night (he has a good friend who lives there) or driving home, we didn’t really have much planned but to enjoy our time together. 

After the boys were off to school on Wednesday, I drove over to his house and we loaded up the car and hit the road.  We goofed off and listened to music and talked about everything under the sun.  For some reason, we also started talking alternately in heavy Chicago accents and also like Christopher Walken.  ‘Twas good times all around.  We were in the city by 10:00 (Chicago time) and made our way to my aunt’s condo.  It was overcast and cool, with lots of wind, so she offered to drive us to the Sears Tower (the one thing we wanted to be sure to do), and dropped us off.  We rode up the packed elevator (that thing is superfast!) and took in the views of the city and Lake Michigan. 

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We were there for about an hour or so, maybe longer, we weren’t really paying attention to the time!  When we left, it had warmed up quite a bit, and we began the walk to the Art Institute.  The plan was to meet my aunt there for lunch, and then go and see the Munch exhibit.

Lunch was good, and we visited with my aunt quite a bit.  The one thing I forgot to do was take pictures with her (DOH!), but we all had a good time, and I could tell that she liked my Fireman a lot.  She had plans to go visit a friend’s farm that afternoon, so she said goodbye after lunch and left us at the exhibit, which was amazing, by the way.  The really cool part?  My Fireman and I actually discussing the different artworks, why we liked or didn’t like pieces, and what was evoked by them.  Did I tell you he’s great or what?  I’ve been to the Art Institute several times since I’ve moved up here, and no matter who I’ve been with, it’s always been sort of walk through, look at the work, move on.  It was really nice to be able to discuss the art with someone who understood it (not that either of us know a lot about art).  My favorites were the wood cuts, which I had never seen before.

We looked through a few more of the exhibits there, and then decided we needed a pick me up.  We had been going since about 7 am, so we were pretty tired by this point.  We had planned to meet up with his friend for dinner, then head over to a comedy show afterward.  It was only about 3 in the afternoon, so we figured we’d go get an energy drink and walk around some before heading over to his friend’s apartment.  We just started walking around near Grant Park when his friend called and said he’d gotten out of his afternoon meetings, so we could come anytime we were ready.  We walked back to the car and drove over.  It wasn’t far, and didn’t take us too long to get there. 

His friend is a guy he’s known since high school, and is a graduate student working on his therapist’s lisence.  He and his girlfriend made me feel very welcome, and we chatted for a bit before changing clothes and freshening up for dinner.  We were beat by this point, but excited to go out on the town.  We ended up eating at a little neighborhood restaurant in Lincoln Park.  It was small and cozy, and very good.  Then we headed to the comedy club.  I didn’t know until we got there that it was Second City.  Ok guys…I am a HUGE Saturday Night Live fan, so this was a big deal to me.  His friend goes there a lot, and has never had trouble walking up and buying tickets, but the show was sold out that night, so we weren’t gonna get to see it.  😦  We weren’t that upset, and just kind of rolled with it.  We WILL have to go back with advanced tickets in hand, though!  😉

We weren’t really sure what we wanted to do at this point, but my Fireman wanted to visit a fire station to get a t-shirt, so we drove back over to the apartment, parked the car, and started walking.  We went to the station first, then walked around by the river.  It was an absolutely gorgeous night, and we got some amazing pictures (like the one I posted the other day) and these:

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When we finally made our way back to the apartment, we were ready to come home.  We said our goodbyes and got back on the road, getting home at a little after midnight.  It was such a great day and night, and I’m sure, the first of many trips to the wonderful city of Chicago.  I love that town.

Sweetness

Ok, now that we got that unpleasantness out of the way, I can tell you a little more about what’s been going on with my Fireman!  First off, like Teeni said, he is very different from the other men I’ve known and written about.  That isn’t to say that he doesn’t have some of the same qualities (humor, etc), but there is another dimension to this man that I haven’t seen before.  Foremost, he is a gentleman.  He opens doors for me, he chats with my parents when he sees them, he is charming and sincere.  He takes care of those he loves, be it his son, me, or his family and friends.  He has the same values I do, especially in terms of family and what he wants for his child(ren).  He has accomplished so much already, and still has goals he wants to attain.  He is always respectful and kind.  How many times have I said that I want a man who is kind?  The whole situation with WT showed me just how wonderful my Fireman is.  He was there for me through it all, not judging, being objective and just being there for me.  How many guys would have done that?  Only one I can think of.

I’m not sure if I told y’all how we met, and right now I’m too lazy to go back and check, so I’ll tell you.  I actually “met” my Fireman waaaaaaaaaaay back in the fall of 2007.  I had posted a MySpace page (under Honey’s suggestion) that was ment to attract some men to go out with.  It worked, and I had a flurry of activity pretty quickly.  My Fireman was one of the men that it attracted.  He was at about the same point in his separation as I was (though he was never married, they had been together for a long time), and we messaged back and forth for a while.  He did ask me out then, but I knew that his ex was still pretty involved in his life, and that intimidated me, so we didn’t ever get together, though we continued to message every once in a while (I still have some of the messages in my inbox).  When I started going out with The Crazy One, I deleted the “Ginger” page and invited a few people to my “real” page.  The Fireman was one of them.  We talked off and on, he dated other people, and I was with TCO for WAY too long.  One day, TCO got onto my page and deleted all of the men off of it, and I never knew my Fireman’s last name, so I figured that was it.

Cut to after the break up with LS, and I was ready to mingle again.  It was Christmas time and I was looking for an address that I knew was in my inbox from the previous Christmas (I somehow forgot to write it in my address book), so I was going through a ton of old messages.  I saw some from the Fireman, and re-read them.  Then I noticed that his default picture was of a wedding and thought, “OH NO!  He got married?!?!”  I clicked on it to check it out, but realized that, no, he didn’t get married (WHEW), it was pictures from a friend’s wedding.  I sent him an add request and waited, all the while I was talking to other folks, WT in particular.  It took a while for him to respond, but he did.  He told me he was just about to delete his account when he saw my message, and told me he was dating someone (wah, wah), but we caught up and it was nice.  I told him about TCO and LS, and how I was just getting back out there.  He added me on Facebook, and we made comments every once in a while, but since he was dating someone, I kind of kept my distance.

Cut to a few weeks later, and I’m at Starbucks writing that damn paper during a power outage.  Who should be there but my Fireman, breaking up with his girlfriend.  I didn’t notice him, of course, because I’m clueless like that sometimes.  He messaged me the next day and said he saw me and knew who I was right away, even though we’d never met in person, but since he was with another girl, didn’t think it would be right to come over and say hi.  He asked me if I would like to go out sometime.  I had just started seeing WT, and didn’t feel right about doing that, so I told him that.  He gave me his number and I gave him mine, though, and told him maybe we could go out to lunch as friends sometime.  When WT started all the back and forth crap and told me I should see other people, my Fireman was first on the list.  I actually texted him on Valentine’s Day, on the way back from my lunch with WT, asking him to go to lunch, and you pretty much know the story from there.

I feel that our paths crossed over and over for a reason.  I mean, how often do things like that happen?  I don’t think it was just a coincidence that he saw me that night.  I also feel that if we had dated way back when we first met, it might not have worked out.  We weren’t ready yet.  If I hadn’t known so many “wrong” men, I wouldn’t have appreciated the right one so much.  He is the man I was looking for without knowing it.  I hope that makes sense to you, because it is very clear to me.

As far as intuition goes, mine is telling me a lot of things right now.  I know I’ve explained this before, but sometimes I just “know” things.  One night I looked at him and just knew I was gonna marry him, and I told him that.  Did he freak out?  Nope, he said that he knew the same thing.  Not tomorrow, not next month, maybe not even next year, but someday, and this time…this time, it will be the way marriage is supposed to be, for both of us.

All Will Be Revealed

My, my, my.  Not even really sure how to begin this post, but I feel like I need to tell you guys the whole story (at least my side) of what happened with WT and how I came to be one half of a couple with the Fireman.  I debated about writing this, and I have written several posts that have remained unpublished for weeks, but I decided in the end I would just password protect it and let it all out.  That’s why y’all love me, right? 

Since I didn’t really tell y’all much about WT’s living situation before, I guess I should start there.  When we first started talking, he told me about his roommate, and how they had been friends for years, and that it was a woman.  He said that they had been FWB, but I took that to mean that they had sex when they weren’t seeing other people.  It didn’t really bother me.  I mean, in the beginning, we were just supposed to be FWB’s, too.  He even told me not to fall in love with him, and I said the same.  I wasn’t expecting anything from him more than friendship and sex.  He said that he was a complete commitment phobe and didn’t want to be in a serious relationship.  I didn’t really want to, either.  In all honesty, I really just wanted a little fun in my life. 

After a few weeks of nonstop texting and talking, he let the “L” word slip.  HE did.  I told him the same (I don’t believe in hiding my feelings, you know that), and it was about a week after that that we had the big “what is our relationship” talk.  That was when he encouraged me to see other people, so I did.  I saw my Fireman and had a great time.  After the second date, though, I felt guilty.  I felt most guilty because I felt like I wasn’t giving Fireman the attention he deserved.  A few days later was when I became WT’s girlfriend.  Throughout all of this, I told the Fireman everything that was going on, and he listened patiently.  He never once told me I was stupid for choosing WT over him, and never said one word against him. 

It was a Sunday that I became WT’s girlfriend.  Things were great for a few days, and then on Wednesday, his roommate popped up on IM and wanted to chat.  We had chatted before, I felt like I needed to make an effort since they lived together and she would be around a lot no matter what.  As we were talking, something slipped out that stuck with me.  I can’t even remember exactly what it was, but as soon as I read it, I knew they had been having sex even when he had been with me (not necessarily for those few days, but whatever).  The damage was done.  He and I had a long talk about it, and I told him I wasn’t sure that I could handle knowing that.  No, we weren’t exclusive, but he knew about my past.  He also knew how guilty I felt about making out with the Fireman, and that it’s hard for me to be so flippant about sex. 

The rest of the week was up and down, back and forth.  WT kept saying that he felt like maybe it was a mistake for us to be exclusive, that he felt like he was “missing out on something.”  Yeah, can you believe that?  Still, he declared his love for me and said that he just needed time to adjust to being part of a couple.  Again, throughout this time, I turned to my Fireman.  I can’t remember if I gave him all the details just yet, but he got the gist of it.  We had lunch one day and talked about a lot of things, and one night I went to his house to try and get my mind off of things.  We put in a funny movie and were just hanging out talking.  I remember looking at him and thinking, this feels so right.  I couldn’t understand how I could feel that way when I was so tangled up with WT, but there it was.

WT and I went back and forth, and it seemed that we never really accomplished anything for all of our talking about our “relationship,” which by this point was feeling a lot like work and nothing like fun.  On Sunday night, he asked if we could meet face to face to talk about things, and I agreed.  We sat in my car and talked for about 2 hours.  I said everything I needed to say, which was mostly about his roommate and that whole situation.  I asked him if he realized that their relationship was that of an open marriage, and how could I fit into that?  He had no answer, other than he didn’t want to lose me.  He also said something about being either “all in” or we needed to “get the fuck out.”  That triggered a response in me to cling tighter to him.  I mean, I cared about him, I loved him, I didn’t want to let him go completely.  Y’all know I have trouble letting people go!  I cried and cried, and at the end, we still hadn’t really come to a conclusion, so we said we were all in. 

As soon as I got home, I knew I made a mistake.  I had had the feeling before that no matter what happened with WT, I would eventually end up with the Fireman.  I stewed over it all night, and told the Fireman (I had told him what happened with WT, and then told him that I’d thought I’d made a mistake).  Still, he didn’t tell me I had.  He was supportive and calming, and non-judgemental.  This just reiterated the fact that I had chosen the wrong man.  Every time I talked to someone about the Fireman, the best way for me to describe him was that he was a great guy.  He is.  Completely.  I haven’t met a more genuinely nice person in my life. 

So, I made the decision that night to talk to WT the next morning, and end it.  I went to class, and as soon as I was in my car, I called him.  I basically just babbled on as he seethed.  He didn’t even say much.  I told him how I knew it was a mistake, that we could make things work for a while, maybe a couple of years, and then one or both of us would resent the other.  I knew he didn’t really want to settle down, and the only reason he said those things was because he was afraid to lose me.  He didn’t want to be exclusive until I started dating the Fireman.  I knew that he could be faithful, but that he would end up resenting me if he felt he was missing out on other things.  So, I hung up with him and called my Fireman.

He was off that day, and asked if I wanted to come over to talk.  I walked in the door and just kind of melted into him.  I cried all over him and told him everything, and how I felt horrible because I had broken WT’s heart.  I stayed there for a few hours, and he comforted me and made me lunch, and made me laugh.  I knew I had done the right thing.  My intuition has always been strong, but the trouble is, when it comes to men and my heart, I haven’t listened to it much.  This time I did, and I knew it was right.

We have spent time together every day since that day, and every day since has been a good one.  The day I called things off with WT, I cried a lot.  I was very sad, and I figured I would be sad for a while.  However, the next day, I was pretty good.  I realized that the reason I was so sad wasn’t so much about losing WT, but that I knew I had hurt him.  However, I knew what I needed to do, and did it.  I was proud of myself for not being a coward.  At first, WT said he didn’t want to talk to me anymore, but after a few days, he told me he wanted us to try to be friends.  It was shaky, but I felt like we could do it. I was wrong.  Even though it had been a few weeks, and he knew that I was with the Fireman, when I posted pictures of the two of us from Chicago online, he told me not to contact him again.  I wasn’t even sad about that.  It just let me know that I was right about him, although I do have a feeling I will hear from him again eventually.

So, that’s the story.  I’m happy with my decision.  I’m happy with my life right now.  I’m looking forward to whatever the future brings, and I am feeling strong that I listened to my intuition and followed through.  My relationship with the Fireman is based on so much more than just sex, and that is a first for me.  Don’t get me wrong, I like-ah da sex, and we are a good match in the bedroom fo sho, but we didn’t start off with sex.  We have fun together, we talk about anything and everything, and we have the same goals for our lives.  Ginger is a happy camper, dudes.

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Testing, Testing, 1, 2, 3

I missed writing.  A lot.  I have written a few things without publishing, but that isn’t the same.  I miss reading about everyone else’s lives and what’s going on, and I miss my friends in the blogosphere.  I didn’t stop writing because of what happened between my friend and I, but because I had to make some difficult decisions without everything being out in public.  I suppose I forgot how to do that. 

I have been so completely open here, and it started to be a bad thing.  I have decided to stick my toe back in and see how it feels.  Since my last post, things are a lot different.  WT and I have gone from couple to friends, and The Fireman and I from friends to couple.  I know, it’s weird.  I listened to my intuition for maybe the first time without letting it stew for a while first.  There were things that came up that I just couldn’t ignore, and my gut was telling me that no matter what, I was going to end up with The Fireman eventually. 

Breaking up with WT was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do.  I love him, he is one of my best friends, but I just knew it would end badly, and I could either end it now or drag it out.  So, we are gingerly testing the friendship waters.  We have even had lunch like a couple of grown ups!  I know he is having a hard time, but I have to remember that I deserve to be happy, and I deserve the things that I want for my future.  This is most likely the last time I will talk about WT.  It doesn’t feel right, and I don’t want to hurt him further. 

Douche left for Afghanistan about a week and a half ago, and the boys seem to be handling it well.  They were upset on the day he left, but I think since they hadn’t seen him in such a long time anyway, it wasn’t too big a deal.  I can tell they try not to dwell on it.  Their step-mother has actually contacted me a couple of times with information, which shocked me, but made me glad that she’s trying to open up communication.

I’m on spring break right now from school, but have been busy catching up on my reading and doing my observations in classrooms.  This means spending time in Bekki’s class, which is FUN!  I am going to Chicago on Wednesday and will be having lunch with my aunt, possibly visiting the Art Institute and the Sears Tower.  I’m excited.  I love that city! 

I am doing well.  Very, very well.