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Yep…I didn’t complete the #31WriteNow challenge…but more on that another day. Today I want to talk about what has been on my mind all day.

One of my favorite (non-hair) blogs is VerySmartBrothas. Last week, one of the site’s contributors shared a 100-word insight on love that he originally posted on another blog.

Please go read it. I’ll wait…..

Read it? Good.

Language aside, it was one of the most poignant and truthful things I’ve ever read. I can completely understand. One of the things I’ve found that came with this all-encompassing happiness from the relationship I’m in wais an ever-present dreading. It feels scary to love someone so much that you become obsessed over how you would deal if they were no longer there. I literally think things such as, “A random drunk driver could change my life and I don’t know how I’d bear it.”

That sucks.

It’s like, I could have an awesome day, a wonderful weekend, and as I’m thinking about it in happiness, this random thought creeps in where if he says he’s about to run to the store for peppermints, I’m dang near hyperventilating. What the what??! This has never happened before. I understood concern for someone taking flights (“Text AS SOON AS you land!!”) or road trips (“Stop texting me and drive!!”), but I’ve never been concerned about Target. Or an outside run. Or lunch (who knows what really leads to cancer these days…). It’s mind-boggling.

What amazes me is that I’ve been in four relationships before now…only two of those being serious…and I’ve never felt this way before. I’d never had this level of concern. Yeah, everyone gets the obligatory “be careful” if they are doing things that requires carefulness, but not the “Please don’t fall getting out of the shower and hit your head on the toilet and black out” type of concern. I imagine that new parents feel the same way.

the-domino-effect-1024In Season 6, “The Domino Effect”, Carrie spends an evening with a visiting Big. He mentions over dinner that he’s in town for heart surgery, and without controlling it, she bursts into tears. It happened again when she visited him in the hospital, and again when she mentioned the reason for his visit to her friends. It was probably the most telling of any relationship she’d ever been in…and she technically wasn’t in one then. She genuinely cared, and the thought that something could happen to him had shaken her to her core. She normally only reserved that type of emotion for the girls. But Big was Big. And he got in. Even though the end of the episode left a lot to be desired on her part, Carrie knew where her feelings were…where they always had been.

I’ll say this, it’s not my hope to start worrying about if caterpillars will mutate and suck the life out of my beloved, but I do know that this is a tell for how much he means to me. Only God can protect him, so I have to let Him do just that. But, one of the best feelings in the world is when I see him walk in the door, and I know he’s safe……………. and with me.

Have you ever experienced this? WHY DIDN’T YOU WARN ME?? How did you handle it? Let me know!

Love,

–V

I haven’t forgotten about you. Between turning 30 (which was awesome, and thank you so much for the spectacular well wishes!), work being back in session with a vengeance, a legion of meetings outside of my teaching responsibilities, church activities, and having the time to stop and enjoy my relationship…ya girl has been busy. And sleepy. Very very sleepy. So I took seven days off from writing, but I’m still here. Say, “Hello Atlanta!” Lol, 😉

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But trust me…I am still one happy girl. I’m happy with where I am. I’m typing this from my phone in a meeting, taking notes and asking questions, but still wanting to express myself. Yesterday, a friend sent a song to me that she said reminded her of myself and my road to 30. The song is “I Choose” by India.Arie. Check the chorus:
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Preach India! This reminded me of when Carrie turned 35 with a less than positive outlook. She had to admit something from her heart that her mind wished wasn’t truth: that she wanted a special man to celebrate with. Having her friends made her life wonderful, but they didn’t fill that companionship void. It wasn’t until Big showed up with champagne and red balloons that she felt better (here’s a Vivienne note: this is when I figured they would end up together. I’m pretty sure I’ll make this a post.)

Then I thought about when one of my closest friends turned 30. She wasn’t looking forward to it and she has a wonderful husband and beautiful children. However, her career wasn’t what she wanted. This is when it occurred to me that this song was relatable. Authenticity to who you are makes a difference. What is important to me may not be as valuable to someone else. But if it’s important to me…it’s important. Pretending it’s not just leaves feelings of discontentment. You can’t forget about yourself and YOUR values. And you can’t judge what’s important to you by what is important to others. Choose.

So… I’m choosing. Choosing to focus on being my best self. Choosing to want to be the best Vivienne, daughter, friend, girlfriend, future wife, and/or future mom that I can. Because I started thinking that way, I embraced 30 with open arms and snacks, lol. I love that life started falling into place and allowed me to see me clearly. I won’t forget about V.

Any areas where you’re choosing your best you…or want to? Share.

Love,
-V
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I had absolutely nothing to write today. I was thinking hard. Because I had a great weekend celebrating my birthday, I wasn’t really focused on finding connections. And also…I was cheating on Carrie with the new love of my life – Olivia Pope. BET showed a Scandal marathon, and I got caught up in it. It was like Law and Order for a second…if I didn’t hurry and change the channel, I was going to get caught up for the next 14 hours and miss my birthday dinner, lol. But as I re-watched Season 1 on Saturday and parts of SATC2 tonight to try and find inspiration for something to write, I realized something: Carrie and Olivia have a few things in common.

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These are two seemingly very different women in exponentially different personal spheres. What could they have in common? Here is what I thought: First, they use their avenues of influence as personal therapy. Carrie’s column took the brunt of most of her “in my head” analyzing. Olivia’s relationship issues turned out to be her best advice to her clients. Everyone remembers the advice of the century to the guy who was in love with his brother’s wife…and the best line ever?

scandalstolenmoments“Stolen moments aren’t a life.”

I remember saying out loud, “Encourage yourself, girl…speak over yourself.” Then I thought…it’s very similar to what Carrie said to Aidan when he realized she was “cheating”. Cigarettes became the allegorical symbol for her infidelity.

Second, neither of them could make what they knew was right stick. How many times did both Carrie/Olivia say they were done with Big/Fitz? Eventually, Carrie and Big married, but when things got too happy and comfortable, she lived for the spice up. They made an entire storyline out of that for the Sex and the City 2 movie (Really? She was bored. That was all that happened for her in the second movie. She was bored.) For different reasons, Olivia won’t let she and Fitz get to their happily ever after. She pulls out at the end each time. I’m pretty sure this just makes the show work, but work with me here.

Third, even with the ideas of their fathers, I remember when the guy who worked with Carrie at Vogue told her she spends her whole life asking questions about men because her father left without answers (Season 4, “A Vogue Idea”). I wonder how Olivia’s relationship with Rowan affects how she interacts with guys. She couldn’t make the relationship with Edison work. You could argue that he was like Carrie’s Aidan. Additionally, you can’t refute the effect that both shows have had on women. Pope’s power is the new Carrie’s fashion. I swear when I went to DC this summer, I just wanted a white coat so I could walk around posing by things. With gloves. Totally with gloves. In a heat wave. That’s the kind of nerd I am.

scandalLastly, the thing they have most in common is that they are flawed. Very flawed. Carrie is there for her friends, she’s a successful writer, and had wonderful shoes…but she didn’t have the greatest moral compass. Same with Pope…smart and powerful with a fly wardrobe, loves the family she created at OPA, but finds it exceedingly difficult to turn away from One Minute moments. Olivia’s very emotion-filled “I don’t show up to places just because you want me,” was convincing, but short-lived. Same with Carrie’s “You can drive up this street all you want because I DON’T LIVE HERE ANYMORE!” (Season Six Part 2, “An American Girl in Paris – part une”) only to find herself laughing with him on the floor of a Parisian hotel.  That’s women. That’s people. We are flawed. We’ve announced to the world, our friends, or at least to ourselves that we are done with some person/place/thing only to answer a text, be caught in an Instagram photo, or have it in our hands again. we mess up. Maybe not on the scales that get to be discussed incessantly by bystanders who claim they’d NEVER be in that situation, but we do.

I couldn’t help but draw comparisons between two of the most discussed woman characters on television of past and present. I love both of the women, but I appreciate that the characters are flawed. That’s life. Big had to travel to Paris and Fitz had to wait out a clock, but the stories and cycles are similar.  I’m curious as to how Pope and Fitz’ stories will turn out. Carrie got married and her happy (ish) ending, but I doubt Shonda will let it be tied up with that pretty a bow.

Come on October 3rd.

Do you watch Scandal? Do you see any other comparisons? Shout ’em out.

Love,

-V

I was having a random conversation with my roommate which led to a conversation about gift giving and dating. A piece of advice her father gave her was (and I’m altering the more colorful language here, lol):

“Don’t trust any [man] who doesn’t do right on your birthday, Valentine’s Day, and Christmas.”

I found that really interesting. We then got into the semantics of gift giving and how much attention is necessary, and is a gift only a gift? Or is it some type of compatibility test. My roommate loves perfume. She’ll spend big money on it because it’s her thing. An ex of hers once got her a perfume set from Mary Kay. She decided that he didn’t really know her, nor did he pay attention, and might’ve been a sign that they weren’t going to last. A certain someone told me once that he’d advise anyone dating me not to ever buy me shoes. I know and love them too much, so there’s too much room to mess it up. I think that applies to her perfume addiction.

Now, I’m not really saying that a bad gift equals a bad relationship. But I wonder, how does gift-giving tie into compatibility? I can probably count on one hand the gifts that I’ve received from the testicled-ones that made me know that they were thoughtful and that they paid attention to me (And yes, it couldn’t be something that I specifically asked for…that’s cheating).

Wait, let me make the criteria for invalidation of said gifts:

1. I couldn’t have specifically asked for it. See previous statement about this. This does not, however, include gifts that come up in conversation, but weren’t explicitly requested.

2. It couldn’t have a self-serving purpose. My ex bought me an additional TV, but I think it was more so there could be one in the bedroom also. Doesn’t count.

3. It couldn’t be a gift that would work for just anyone. Flowers, candy, and the like…unless they were specifically tailored to said person. My favorite flower isn’t common…but either it was a) never inquired or b)  never given … got plenty of roses though. And carnations. And we know how the girls feel about that (Season 6).

4. It couldn’t have put them far outside of their means. If I know cash is tight, and you buy an extravagant gift for me, I’m going to worry about for what you probably could’ve used that money. It will take me awhile to appreciate the gift. I’d probably want to give it back, but would be concerned that the guy would be offended.

5. Wasn’t a continuation of a gift I gave them. Still cheating. I wrote my ex a story about a fictitious great day with him. He wrote me back the same story from his point of view. It was awesome…but not original.

Hmmm….. I’m tempted to include that it could not be for some outrageously significant occasion. I mean, obviously…the expectation comes with the day/event. But, I don’t want to count something out just because it happened to be someone’s birthday. So I’ll strike it from the record (but in the weird way that they do it in court, when the jury heard it, but are supposed to act like they didn’t). And it should go without saying that I had to have liked the gift… It doesn’t matter if other people thought it was awesome. If I didn’t like it, it doesn’t count.

Here are the top three gifts I’ve ever received:

1. A stuffed Cocker Spaniel. I told my friend the story of how my sister’s dog, Major, became my dog and I loved him like my own. When my sister and her college boyfriend broke up, he took the dog back. I was heartbroken. He gave us visitation, and then moved to St. Louis. He started complaining that he couldn’t take care of him like he needed, and my sister asked for him back. He said he’d think about it…and then sold my dog to some couple moving to Seattle. I mentioned that to him in some weird random conversation around the time we met. He also knew I wanted a dog, but was concerned that I wouldn’t have the time to truly care for it. And for Christmas, there was my stuffed Cocker Spaniel puppy. I still have it.

2. Plane ticket home for my first Christmas away from my family. My five year ex got that for me. I had just moved to Atlanta, and was trying to be adult and mature. I had gone home for Thanksgiving, and decided that I couldn’t fiscally go back for Christmas. His family, who I knew and loved, were going to be in Atlanta, so I figured it made sense. April Fools. I was miserable. I loved his family, but I wanted my mom. When I opened that, it was a one way home for the day after Christmas because he said he knew that the first Christmas would be hard. He then drove and picked me up and brought me back to Atlanta.

3. ……um…. I’ve literally been sitting here for about 7 minutes trying to come up with a number three. I got nothing that doesn’t break one of those rules up there. So yeah…2.

Now, this doesn’t mean that I haven’t gotten sweet gifts, or thoughtful ones, but I’m talking about that “WOW…I can’t believe you did that.” I mean, if I’ve been complaining about my back hurting, and you get a massage certificate… it’s still sweet, thoughtful, and I’m really happy about it. All I’m saying is that was a “Duh” gift. It wasn’t rocket science. This isn’t being unappreciative  – it’s just what I mean for this conversation.

Do you think gift-giving counts for something? Does it tell you something special? I also want to implore the Love Haze clause. If you’re in love, you probably like gifts a lot more than you would if you were looking at them sans emotion. Unless…it really really sucked.

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And, do you have a great gift you’d want to share? I’m interested. I’ll live vicariously, 😉

Love,

-V

P.S. Cards are always awesome. I always look for cards. Stealth cards are the best. I am the Queen of giving stealth cards 😉

So, for the past couple of weeks, I’ve been all in my feelings. I feel some kind of way about that, lol (See what I did there?)

Creatively, that’s been good. A lot of writing…blogs, poetry, song flips, etc… But, for my own brain? It’s in overload. Even when I’m trying to not think about something, I start thinking about why I’m trying not to think about it. That’s a cycle of suckiness. Hmmm… (lol)

So, this is where my thoughts went today: Things I miss about being in a good relationship (or at least a relationship when it was good). My past relationships had some good parts. My future ones will too. Some of these things I’ve never experienced, but I hope I will. I guess some of these are pre-missings. And these won’t be duty-based things, like someone to take out the trash. Just those little together things…

1. Tailor-made personal touches. One of my exes, when we were about to leave each other, he would pick my hand up, kiss the palm, and then take my finger tips and put them between his lips like you would if you were blotting lipstick. (Does this make sense?) It made me giggle. He didn’t do it as often near the end of our relationship, and I noticed. It was personal, at least to me, like that scene in FaceOff where John Travolta’s family all had a sign of affection that they did to each other all the time.

2. Movie Day. Some of the best days I can remember with anyone I’d ever dated were those impromptu days when you just ended up watching movies for a majority of the day. This was especially interesting if the other party had never seen the movie. Because of the type of movies I like, guys normally haven’t seen them, or have seen them and like them. So we’re either cracking up, or discussing. My best movie days normally had my legs across the lap of the guy. Not too close, not too far away (and if I fall asleep and he has to pee…he’s not held prisoner, nor am I awakened, lol. It’s a really good relationship if he comes back and puts them back across his lap.)

3. Dissecting Music. Generally, anyone I’ve been involved with loved music in one respect or another, so I remember long car trips listening to a series of Jay-Z or OutKast albums. And, even more recently, having conversations about harmonies and vocal qualities. I bond over things like that. It was really good if he liked/likes to hear me sing (because I’m always singing… Every song has a soprano part around me, lol.)

4. Neck Kisses and Good Hugs. I’ll keep all the more physical examples in one. There isn’t much explanation needed for this. I’ve always liked those, lol. Neck kisses, especially from behind (you know, like when you’re cooking or something) make me smile the biggest, shyest smile. Good hugs make me happy for the rest of the day.

5. Inside Jokes. Man…Honestly, I probably miss this more than anything. I don’t think I’ve had an inside joke with anyone I was actually dating in forever. I may have had times where I was making fun of them or being sarcastic based on something only the two of us know, but that’s not the same. I mean, to see something, it remind us of a private moment, and we laugh.

6. Hearing “My Girl”. *deep sigh* moving on…

7. Finding Cards to Give/Hide/Etc. I LOVE cards. I like giving them and getting the reaction, and receiving them and reading them over and over (Yep, I’m a re-reader, lol). I remember once, I woke up at 4am and snuck out the house to someone’s car to put a card on their windshield before he got up for work. I also write in the cards too…as if the message in it wasn’t enough. Maybe that makes me sappy… Whatever. I was at one point. I wonder will I be again?

8. Taking impromptu pictures. Silly. Looking in love. Weird. All of them.

9. Calling/texting to tell random information. I remember texting an ex once to tell him that Sonic had chicken sandwiches on sale. Um…WHY are they on SALE? Why are you trying to get rid of them? I don’t want that. Sonic is trying to kill me. (That was the general strand of the text…lots of laughs and chiming in on my conspiracy theory.)

10. Saying “I love you” when leaving each others presence. I’m not overly-emotional, but I am sentimental. Maybe that’s where this whole list comes from.

One thing I always found interesting in the dynamic of Big and Carrie’s relationship is that she there were things she was comfortable doing with him that she was never comfortable doing with everyone else. She never laughed with Petrovsky. She changed herself for Aidan. She watched her words around Berger. I always liked how she just liked being with Big, whether they were in or out. He called her Kid. They dissected people.

Anyway…hopefully, I’ll be out of my feelings soon. I’m a G, and I’m one Amerie/Teedra Moses/Vivian Green/Musiq/Erykah Badu song away from being a punk. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

What are your favorite random things you do in your relationship? Or, if you’re not in one, what things are you looking forward to doing again?

Love,

V 🙂

P.S. In case you want to hear the kinds of songs stuck in my head…here’s a perfect example:

 

 

 

Whenever I go to the grocery store, it is almost a definite that someone will stop me about my hair. They would say some variation of, “Oh my gosh! I love your hair. What do you do to it? What products do you use? I’m natural, but I’m not sure what I need to do.” I share my hair regimen, and I can see the looks on their faces change from “Oh wow” to “Nuh unh.” 4/5 of the time, I hear this phrase:

“Oh wow. Yeah…that’s too much work for me.”

I normally shrug and say, “Well, it works for me.” It has happened so much that I don’t pay it too much attention. It always reminds me of something I saw on a Kevin Hart behind the scenes video. He and his friends say this as a sort of call and response thing: “Everybody wanna be famous…don’t nobody wanna put the work in.” I would chuckle to myself, and keep it moving.

Then, as I was in the shower, hair twisted, shampooing (only my scalp) section by section, drenching with conditioner, finger detangling, and thinking of the black tea rinse I wanted to do, something occurred to me: The same is true of relationships. Everyone wants their Mr. Big, but nobody wants to have to beat him with flowers. For any individual, how much work is too much?

Sometimes, the work for some is at the beginning with appearance. He doesn’t look like you want him too. He’s too _______. If Charlotte had felt that way, she never would have been with Harry, who is arguably (though not really) the best husband on the series. Sometimes, the work is in the middle. Personality differences, disagreements, and/or compromises. The entire Steve and Miranda relationship is based on that premise. Sometimes she did the work; sometimes it was him; either way, it got done. If the work is at the end, like Samantha and Smith, you’re giving the old college try to make sure you’ve exhausted all possibilities before calling it out. But what if your work is like Carrie and Big…all throughout? Is she just stupid for not leaving sooner? Or did her perseverance finally award her the prize?

On VerySmartBrothas.com, there was a post about why women are overly loyal.My friends and I had a conversation about it, and one said, “Most women don’t give up easily…but we need not to if we are going to be “overloyal” mothers to our daughters and sons (not to create needy daughters or mama’s boys though). So I guess we gotta learn to give up on people early in the game lol??” Her sarcasm, (which I love…it’s one of the reasons why we’re friends) rings very true. Where is the line? I know it may be fine, but can we see it? Would it be dumb to think that something we’re not doing in practice (being loyal/working in relationships) will happen in the game (marriage to divorce)?

Put it like this…I like the outcome of my hair styling sessions. I’m willing to put it the work when the outcome is what it is. BUT, if (God forbid) a fire catches my hair a la Michael Jackson…no amount of deep conditioner can help that. I’m going to have to cut this ish off.

What say you? How much work is too much?

Love,

–V

Hey folks!.

Okay seriously? I know, I know. I can’t promise when I will blog…I can only promise that I will.

Now, on to the show.

One of my favorite cautionary quotes is “Trust is like a mirror. You can fix it if it’s broken, but you’ll still see the cracks in the reflection.” (That dang on Lady GaGa, lol. This is paraphrased to take out the curse word, but you get the point.) It has gotten me to thinking over the past few months days. Can you actually rebuild trust?

There have been times I’ve forgiven people. A lot of times. But I notice that I still treat them who have recently been in car accidents and hear screeching noises: I tense up. Not physically, but emotionally. If you’ve lied to me, I question what you say. If you’ve let me down, I don’t depend on you. Sure, I’ve gotten past the actual infraction, but I’m not leaving myself open to a future one.

I found this interesting in Carrie more than any of the other girls. She seemed to trust Big implicitly. She went back to him, let’s see…1, 2, 3, 4, …5 times (or so…hmm…6 if you include the movie…more if you include little rendezvous…what the heck is the plural of rendezvous?? It already sounds plural. #englishteacherswag) throughout the course of the series. She seemed like she had forgotten the past at every encounter. However, in SATC: The Movie, she literally went from

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to….

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…within a 24 hour period. Now granted, you jilt me…you better HOPE all I have at my disposal are flowers. BUT…what got me was her statement: “I knew you would do this to me! I knew it!” Seems all wasn’t forgotten. His past mistakes/decisions/let downs came rushing back in that statement. In that statement, there wasn’t surprise. There was confirmation.

Miranda and Steve met on the Brooklyn Bridge to show that trust would be restored………………..but they never quite returned to that storyline at all in the second movie to explore. I wonder if she would’ve ever done a phone blow-up on a night when it seemed he was taking too long to come home from the bar after that.

I want to say that I can refill trust…but at most, I think I have a 90% trust refund. That capacity diminishes by double the previous with every infraction. And, I’m pretty forgiving. I get mad at myself when I feel like I’ve gotten “un-angry” too quickly. But, that forgetting is a different ball game. It’s like even when I think I can, my head gives my heart a side-eye like, “Really? Really dude?”

So what say you? Can trust be repaired completely? Or does the party seeking restoration of trust have to live with the diminished capacity? Or…is time the necessary factor, but the length of time is indeterminable? What say you?

Love,

–V

One of my favorite sayings from “The Game” character Tasha Mack is, “Emotional walls, girl…emotional walls!” It means that she’s in a situation where she needs to detach herself so she can do something without bias/say something smart/shank somebody/something. It probably (and by probably I mean “not at all” because she’s not a real person) came from a lifetime of having to sustain herself and her child in the hood and beyond. It was a learned behavior.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve had some time to reflect on myself and my own behaviors. Even a few months ago in this post, I wondered what I am giving off to attract the “type” of guys who become attracted to me. Now, for the first time in a looooooooooong time, I have started thinking about my past relationship. The one that ended over a year ago. Not about him (in the least), but about it. I’m trying to figure out my learned behaviors.

One thing I’ve observed from watching Sex and the City is that Carrie always took her cues from her relationship with Big. I’m pretty sure that her other relationships did not work because she was either acting like she was still with Big or behaving in the manner that would cause behavior she craved from Big. She kept things light. (He would withdraw if she went too deep.) She made insinuations until absolutely necessary. (He used directness as a way to highlight reluctance to commit, and she never wanted his mind to go there…and he knew it.) Laughing and banter is what cultivated their intimacy. (He would have been turned off by emotional outpours.) She learned the game and played it until she couldn’t. (I would normally reference a specific show here, but choose an episode with Big in it, and then pick an example. Don’t worry…the words will still be here when you get back ;). )

Anyone who has known me for at least 8 years knows about three different versions of who I am, and I’m willing to bet that they are all some variation of timid, subdued, and bold. Some people (who shall remain nameless) have referred to me as a nutcracker within the past year or so (how rude, lol). It wasn’t like this before. Oh, I’ve always been opinionated. Maybe a little less direct than I am now,  but I’ve never been afraid to express that opinion, but in relationships? I walked the line that was drawn. Tried to be ever-accommodating. I was vulnerable (not a bad thing necessarily) and though I was never overly emotional, I was not afraid to express my feelings.

My ex was very scaled back. He wasn’t overly affectionate. We had a highly intellectual relationship…our jokes about arguing over the correct pronunciation of Hungary during the Olympics at 4am, or the little Jamaican girl with the attitude on the Scripp’s Spelling Bee are some of my best memories of us because it was totally us. No one else would do it. Most of the time if we were together, people could only tell we were dating by the proximity of our seating, but they admired the yin and yang thing we had going. We held hands rarely, and usually in cases that dictated it – romantic dinners, walks on a beach, around other people who were holding hands. We danced together on New Year’s Eve at his uncle’s annual party. We sat opposite each other at dinner…never shared a bench like the people we sometimes made fun of (“Don’t they need elbow room?”) What’s funny is, I always wanted more (not a lot more because it would have been too much). He shut down if I “explained” too much and it seemed like it was emotional. He complained if I fell asleep on him while watching movies, because it would make it difficult for him to move around if he needed to do so.

So what did I do? I danced on New Year’s Eve. I sat on the opposite bench. I held hands quickly at traffic lights. I solidified my explanations to bare speaking points, infused with jokes so it never seemed too emotionally driven. I put my feet on him instead of my head. I allowed him to temper my emotional behavior because that relationship was my first “real” one. It cultivated “relationships” for me. In other words, I Carrie-d.

Now, I don’t understand real flirting with actual feelings involved. Oh I can play the game, but not when there’s anything to lose. It’s not in my natural reaction to be overly affectionate, even though I don’t dislike it at all. I shut down when I hear too much emotion in someone’s explanation to find the bare points. And I try as I’m learning. It comes out in spurts like cars with 9 tablespoons of gas. I’ll get very affectionate…and then go sit in my chair where it is impossible to sit next to me. I wonder if anyone else has this story.

I don’t think I want to stay this way, but I don’t want to Carrie either. What’s a girl to do?

Do you have any learned behaviors lingering from the past? Are they helpful? Harmful?

Love,

–V

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