Tag Archives: Friends

I can go… with the flow…

I moved around a lot as a kid. By the time I was in 6th grade, I lived in 6 different cities. After high school I moved over 14 times, including a 3 month period of crashing on couches and floors.

You learn a lot when you move. From a young age, I learned how to adapt quickly and let go of attachments. I was always well-liked, so I never had trouble making friends but I struggled with laying roots. I was always jealous of my peers who had friendships that started at birth because most of my friendships were new and only lasted until I moved again.  And because of this, I never feel fully grounded. To this day, everything feels temporary. Relationships, apartments, jobs… nothing feels like it can last forever.

A strange side effect of this seemingly perpetual motion is that I go along with things very easily. Some may call this “being flexible.”

Most people may say that it’s a good thing to be so flexible. Though some may perceive me as high strung, I can roll with the punches. Since I have spent most of my life adapting to new situations I don’t freak out when routines change, and last minute alterations don’t faze me a bit.  But the problem is that I am never satisfied. I never get what I truly desire. I have gone along with the agendas of others for so long, that I tend to put myself last. And what’s worse is that I’m afraid to speak up for what I want for fear of sounding too needy.

Now don’t get me wrong, I never do anything I don’t want to do. I never do anything I’m uncomfortable with or that I regret. But lately I’ve grown a bit tired of just going with the flow.

Clearly a big step in fighting against this tide was my relocation to New York a couple of years ago. My complacency put me in such a state of unhappiness that I decided to shake things up. And shake things up I did. I restarted just about everything in my life. I wasn’t following anyone else’s script. I was making my own path. And this has truly made me very happy. And still does.

But then there’s the dating dilemma. I have had many guys come in and out of my life since I moved here. And it’s been fun. This is the first time I ever dated casually. However, more than once I’ve found myself falling a bit for someone and wanting more, but they didn’t want the same thing. So, I end up settling for what they want… which is really just a fraction of what I actually want.

I suppose the idea here is that I’m flexible… I can be whoever I need to be for that particular person. But I know what you’re thinking: grow a backbone and don’t settle for anything less than what you want. It’s not as easy for me. I’ve had this concept burned into my brain forever- that if I actually say what I want and fight for it that I will be seen as needy or high maintenance. I worry that if I speak up, I’ll just end up with nothing at all.

I took a big risk coming to New York. I had no job, no apartment, no friends… but I stuck to my guns and have managed to do quite well for myself here. I have new goals all the time and I’m inspired and encouraged by the city and all the wonderful people I’ve met here. I didn’t back down and settle… I went for it.

They say fortune favors the bold. If I was able to risk everything to move myself across the country, surely I can fight for what I want out of a relationship. Even if I risk losing someone I care about in the process. Easy to say, but much harder (for me) to do. Stay tuned.

Blog song title: “Go With the Flow” by Queens of the Stone Age


I’d like to think I’m the mess you’d wear with pride…

I mentioned previously that I think I know what I want when it comes to dating. I say that I think I know because it changes a bit day to day. Overall, I know I want a connection… I want to be close to someone and I want someone to be close to me. Being ready for this, however, is a whole different story.

A few weeks back I met a guy on the street… literally. His name was Mike and he was drunk and adorable and aggressively (in a cute way) hitting on me. I gave him my number and headed home. He texted me immediately and wanted to see me. He was in town for the weekend (from California- ha) so I said what the hell. He came over and we started fooling around. Mid-makeout he stopped and asked me if I believed in love. It was asked out of pure curiosity… but I couldn’t help but be thrown. Suddenly I found myself choking back tears. I really didn’t know what to say. Love has evaded me for quite some time and I felt my pessimism creeping in at this moment. He saw this and declared that believing in love is the most important thing. We ended up laying there and having a really fantastic and honest talk about love.

As I walked him to the train, I told him how glad I was that I met him. He returned the sentiment and asked if we could stay in touch. And we have- just sending encouraging text messages to each other from time to time. It’s nice to have someone out there in the universe who is rooting for me to root for love.

Also, throughout this process (the process being me moving on from a broken heart and figuring out what I want) I met someone through a friend who has been a surprising and positive force in my life. We’ve only hung out a couple of times, but he’s had quite the impact on me. He’s always building me up and reminding me that I’m an interesting person. He encourages me… not just to find love, but also to make something of this writing thing. The last time I saw him, I made sure to tell him how grateful I was for his friendship.

For some reason, when I think about these people and their kindnesses… I get a bit misty. I’d like to think that the love coming my way is so wonderful that I’m overwhelmed with emotion… but it’s more that I feel uncomfortable and somehow undeserving of this positivity. It’s strange- I’m a pretty confident gal. I know what I have to offer… and yet, I’ve gotten into a habit of finding men who are only interested in one thing (what am I? 16?)… so when I’m around these guys who genuinely care about what I have to say, I’m a bit out of my element. Like, oh yeah… remember how awesome I am? Well, other people are seeing it too…

Look, I know I’m a damn mess… and having these guys in my life is not just a reminder to me that there are actually good guys in the world… but that I’m worth all the love they are willing to give.

 

Blog song title: “I Go to the Barn Because I Like The” by Band of Horses


Red letter weekend…

Spring has sprung in NYC and it is truly awesome. There was quite the buzz in the air all weekend as the lingering winter weather is finally gone and moods have lifted.

Every Saturday I play softball in Central Park with my alumni group. The weather this past Saturday was absolutely gorgeous… lots of familiar faces came to play and because it was so nice out we drew in some new ones. And post game beers led to my newest friendship (and greatest dart game ever played).

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LOOK AT THAT SCORE (Q and J were victorious)

When my friend Lauren and I decided to get some afternoon drinks on Sunday, we reached out to our new softball buddy and he invited us to a picnic in Central Park with his friends. Of course, it wasn’t until we got to the park and started talking with these new people that I realized I was accomplishing something from my 34 before 34 list! Well, mostly:
27) Organize a picnic in Central Park

(Though I wasn’t the organizer, I feel that this can get crossed off… I attended a picnic in Central Park… close enough).

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Wine, snacks, blankets, catch, boom.

Sheep’s Meadow was packed with blankets and people and frisbees… the atmosphere was so cheerful. Our new little group of friends was getting along so well and wanted to keep the party going… so when the weather began to turn on us (also, we were out of wine) we retreated to a Midtown bar. We were halfway through our beverages there when we got the sudden inspiration to go sing karaoke. It was spontaneous and random and an absolute BLAST.

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Dart Champions, Q and J… and Lauren (of the losing dart team)

I am hurting a bit today (wine+beer-dinner=OUCH), but it was totally worth it. As I have said so often, I love meeting new people and making new friends. And I love how frequently this happens here in NYC.

And though the weather isn’t as great today, I’m so energized by the spring and can’t wait to see what else is in store. If you can’t tell, I’m a happy lady these days. Smiley face.

 

(Remember my last post where I said I was changing the rules a bit? Yeah, blog titles are going to be originals from now on…)


Daring to try, to do it or die…

I know that lately my writing has not been very… soulful. I’ve been told by a couple of people that my writing is best when I am as transparent as I can be. And I’ve been holding back.

I’m not really afraid of being personal here. Of course, I worry about offending friends and others by including them in my writing. But I don’t like to hold back my thoughts. If you know me in person, you know that I’m always like this. If I have something to say, I say it.

Unfortunately, I have some doubters in my midst. Some aren’t taking my writing seriously. Some think that my travel plans are just an excuse to take a vacation. Some don’t believe that I’m actually going to go on this trip. And I will say… this really hurts. I have mentioned before how important it is to me to be understood. And it’s painful when I’m misunderstood… or underestimated.

But I’m just stubborn enough to let this doubt push me even harder. Get ready for some fucking transparent writing. In the last few months I had my heart broken, I considered every job imaginable, I decided to start therapy, I begged old friends for money, I got hit on by a 20 year old and totally flirted back, I went out on a date for the first time in months (not with the 20 year old), I took boudoir style photos for my photographer roommate, and I haven’t written about any of it.

I’m going to write. I’m going to travel. I’m going to pursue. I’m going to persist. I’m going to prove you wrong.

 

Blog song title: “I’ve Gotta Be Me” by Sammy Davis Jr. 


Hey, don’t let it go to waste…

What a weekend…

Spring is in the air -and I’m telling you, there really is nothing quite like Springtime in NYC… especially after a long and lingering Winter. The city is buzzing… itching to get out and DO. And you know, that’s my favorite.

I had a fantastic weekend that started off with crossing something off my 34 before 34 list:  6) Go to an improv show

On Friday, I went with a couple of friends to the Upright Citizens Brigade theater. Having long ago studied the rules of improv, I have to say that I was unimpressed. There were 5 performers and many of them were quite selfish- trying to make the bits work for them rather than “yes and”ing. However, it was a fun time with friends and that was the key. Also, I love the sense of accomplishment I get from crossing things off my list.

The highlight of Friday, however, was thanks to a bit of social media. As we were walking to the UCB show, I checked Facebook and saw that a dear old friend of mine had posted a picture of the Empire State Building. He was here in NYC! So I messaged him and we were able to meet up.

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In 2002… after some adult beverages

Though we hadn’t seen each other in a while, it was wonderful to see a friendly and familiar face in my new setting… and getting to catch up after many years. It’s nice to be reminded of the importance of the people in our lives… I know… that’s a very general statement. But I really believe that we are here (on this earth) to make relationships… to connect to people… and though we may not always be in touch with each other… the connections always remain. And that’s kind of the essence of existence… no?

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In 2013… after some adult beverages

The rest of the weekend was spent out and about… playing softball (a lot of it), watching the Final Four, drinking, dancing, just having a general great time with great people… and even meeting a few new ones.

And not to bring it down, but my mom starts chemo today. I can’t do much for her being thousands of miles away… but I can stay positive. I can remember that life is short and that I need to take advantage of absolutely everything. I’m making an effort to make the most of my life. I’m seeking things to do, and opportunities to get out and meet people and make connections. And this is how I can support my mom… by LIVING. I took a big bite out of life this weekend… just like my mom is going to take a big bite out of cancer. (Good gravy, I know that sounds corny, but please know this is just about the most sincere thing I can say about it right now…)

Blog song title: “All My Life” by Foo Fighters
Photo credit: my trusty iPhone (though the first picture is from a very old digital camera)


Root, root, root for the home team…

About a year ago, I was still fairly new to NYC and jobless and virtually friendless. Networking was my life and before I even moved to the city, I had joined my alumni association’s NY Facebook group. One fortunate day, someone posted a request for girls interested in playing softball… and thus began my life with the Aggressive House Spiders.

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Team Jersey… of sorts

I have never played organized (or disorganized, for that matter) sports in my entire life. Though I wanted to join various activities in my elementary days (oh, how I longed to be part of a team), I was denied by the Folks. Perhaps it was the plight of being the youngest of 4 kids (most extracurriculars had been exhausted on the older siblings)… but I didn’t get to do most of the activities kids did… no Girl Scouts or AYSO soccer… but I had a very happy and fulfilling childhood… so no harm done. HOWEVER, my athletic prowess is severely lacking.

So I decided to get out there and join the softball team. What was the harm in trying? Plus, I figured it would be a great networking opportunity… and fun… probably?

I immediately felt at home with the Spiders. They were welcoming, encouraging, and funny as hell. It didn’t matter that I could barely get to 1st base or that I have no business being in the outfield. I still got high fives and helpful tips to improve. And it was nice being a part of a team… I think I’ve mentioned before my penchant for “belonging.”

I learned that I really do like to play softball… I’m still terrible, but I enjoy getting out there and trying. Even taking a fly ball square to the forehead hasn’t kept me off the field. Yeah, that was awesome. I even decided to invest in a pair of cleats… in hopes of building enough traction to get my slow ass to 1st (at least until I can hit the ball better).

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So legit.

But more than a bit of physical activity every week, I’ve gained a strange and wonderful family… whether it’s getting advice on guys from Grant and Scott, or getting job leads from Danilo, or political lectures from Patrick, or super awesome true-definition-of-friend-ness from Chrissy, or just fantastic post-game conversations over MANY pitchers of Bud Light… these people are amazing and I’m so glad I answered Danilo’s Facebook post.

Tonight, I start my 4th season with the Spiders. And though I see many of my teammates outside of the ZogSports realm (and some players have come and gone – we miss you, Trisha and Octavio!), it will be great to come together as a team after a few months off…. and hopefully string a few W’s together. But if we don’t… pitchers and wings and nachos after the game will be enough for me. We may not always win on the field, but we always win at the bar… GO SPIDERS!

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Walter getting into the Spider Spirit

Blog song title: “Take Me Out to the Ballgame”
Photo credit: Nathalie (my roommate), me, Nathalie again


Recently discovered and I’m learning about you…

One of my favorite things about New York is that you could potentially go out every night and never go to the same place twice. This goes for dining and drinking.

However, I am a creature of habit. And I am a big fan of being a “regular.” As the song goes, “Sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your name.” Since I moved here, I’ve frequented a handful of places enough that I know many of the people who work there and subsequently get greeted with hugs or kisses on the cheek. I love these places. Part of what brings me back is the friendly service, good conversation and in most places, delicious food. And of course, comfort in the familiar.

Lately, I’ve been feeling the need to branch out. A couple of weeks ago, I found myself wanting to go out but nobody to go with… so I went out alone (to a bar I had been to before, yes… but just once) and I ended up having a great time. I bellied up to the bar and struck up interesting conversations with a series of random people. Obviously, this is not the first time this has happened to me, but every now and then I need to shake things up and remind myself how much I love just going out and meeting people.

I need to keep being a tourist in my own city. Living in a city like New York and not taking advantage of ALL it has to offer is just plain wasteful. I certainly don’t shy away from going places by myself… but it is fun to discover new places and things with another person. I’m all about the shared experiences… so come on out with me… let’s go do something different…

 

Blog song title: “New” by No Doubt


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