Tuesday, February 26, 2013

little lies

Is lying a deal breaker in a relationship? How big does a lie have to be before it does irreparable damage? What if they were lying to "protect you from being hurt"? Is staying silent the same as lying?

I have a personal rule for my relationships - no lying. Tell the truth, even if it means a difficult conversation has to happen. If you're in a relationship where you can't tell the truth, can't tell if you're hearing the truth, or that started with a series of lies, such as in an affair, how can you ever really believe in them and feel secure? I don't think you can. You're always looking, always on edge, whether you're the liar or the one being lied to.

I don't lie to those I love, because I know how it feels. I was raised to lead by example and treat others the way I want to be treated. I think a lot of people go around treating people the way they've been treated, and considering how many problems we see with violence and hatred in our culture, that's a nasty spin cycle we've created.

I believe that those I am in relationship with - my family, my friends, my love - are worth the truth. I believe I'm worth it too.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

beautiful souls

I just spent the weekend with my best friend and two teenage girls. We flew to Los Angeles where we immediately (an hour or so later) got in the rental car and drove directly to the Pacific Ocean to have a picnic lunch with our feet in the sand, soaking up some sunshine and watching surfers. We spent the next two days covering every inch of Disneyland and California Adventure, filling up our happy tanks, laughing till we cried, walking till we hurt, and riding roller coasters till we screamed. I heard more giggles out of those two girls than I thought possible, until I remembered that I was once a giggling girl myself.

And yet, in the middle of all the excitement and joy, there were bittersweet moments. I couldn't help remembering going through the Haunted Mansion and riding the Matterhorn with Rochelle when we were 15. I thought of friendship often as I was watching the girls, knowing that both of them are seriously struggling with self-esteem, eating disorders and more, in a way that is beyond normal for their age. But their giggles and happiness were real this weekend, of that I am sure. I can only hope that it carries them for a while and shelters them from pain as long as possible.

Although I'm not a parent, my maternal instincts wanted to do everything to make sure they know that they are worthy and loved just for being themselves. That beauty isn't in the clothes they wear, the makeup they sneak on, and in whether they have a tan or not. It's in their soul and it sparkles even when their eyes are sad. It's in the child-like joy of joining in with a Disney character who just asked you to dance on the sidewalk. It's in learning a new way to live after a parent leaves or passes away. It's in the act of volunteering at a cat shelter just because you love cats. It's in giggling and sharing secrets with your best friend, knowing that she's got your back no matter what. It's in the permagrin that comes from riding a roller coaster that made you feel like a kid. These girls have beauty that cannot be contained, I just wish they could see what I see and trust in themselves.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

catfishing for birds?

I've been watching the show Catfish recently. It's a fascinating view into online dating and pardonmyfrench scumbags who prey on people who are (mostly) honest in their search for love. Apparently I'm picking up some great tips to help screen online dates. One of the tools Nev uses to help figure out each "catfishes" true identify is Google image search.

Since I started using it (it's super easy by the way), I've come across guys who used a picture of a Latin singer, a former New Kid On The Block, and a songwriter/pianist.

One feature I've seen is that if the image search can't identify the person, it does offer some suggestions of similar photographs that might include the image you're searching for. And tonight, it made me laugh from the bottom of my soul.

I was searching a few images of a guy who I agreed to meet for coffee soon. One of his pictures was just a shot of him wearing a red shirt, sitting on a couch. The Google image search suggested that this image might be similar to the one I was looking for:

Yep. Angry birds. My next coffee date's doppelganger is angry birds. How the heck am I supposed to keep a straight face now?

Monday, February 4, 2013


When I was a kid and a friend's dad brought back authentic boomerangs from a trip to Australia, we all ran over to the baseball field to practice. He showed us how to throw them - and his always sailed out confidently in a perfect spin, coming right back to him time and time again. We were much less successful. Mine would go out and maybe start to turn back before getting distracted and falling to earth with a thud and a cloud of dust. We tried all summer to master the art of the boomerang.

Oh boy, here we go again!

I've done my share of dating in the last year or two. Meeting guys at the dog park, online, out dancing with friends, and even speed dating. Some were funny, some were kinda weird, some kind of forgettable and uninteresting. Some led to second dates and more, and some never called again. A handful of men stood out for one reason or another. The ones I actually liked. The ones I daydreamed about afterward. The ones who made my heart flutter. Ha! I really gotta figure out the difference between flutter and indigestion!

And then, for one reason or another, they all ended. In some cases, I chose not to continue dating them. "A" was too attached and wanted too much from our relationship too soon. "J" lied to me about too many things, and was also a little pushy. With "E" I went 3 hours out of my way to spend a very special night with him and got stood up, and a little heart broken. With "R" I made an insecure sarcastic comment at the wrong time and a man I'd dreamed of being close to was gone without another word. "S" met someone else at a party - but had the decency and kindness to tell me honestly before we got too serious - and we both walked away peacefully.

I know, that's not all of them who matter, but I'm not ready to talk about those I've left out yet. Some of my stories haven't ended, are just beginning, or are still too painful. After all, we're talking about my heart here. I may joke around, but I am still just a girl looking for love.

The thing is, while all those relationships ended or fizzled out, I've been practicing one rule. To be true to myself. To know what I need, what I want, to be fully my sarcastic, silly, sensitive self. At least this way, I know that if someone walks away, they are walking away from the real me, not someone I pretended to be. And if I push them away, it's because I know they aren't right for me in some way. So I don't regret what I've learned or how I've learned it. I've been truthful and direct with each one about my reasons for moving on.

Then, last week happened. Two of the guys I've moved on from came back around. Wanted to try again. Like a boomerang. Didn't "E" hear me when I said "you won't get another chance to hurt me like that" when he called to explain why he stood me up? And "S" is just feeling the water - am I still interested in being friends? That led to an interesting conversation about what "friends" means. Apparently, we're allowed to go out for ice cream and beer and watch tv sometimes. Oh, and we get to tell jokes and laugh, but no flirting is allowed. And then he proceeded to flirt like it was going out of style. Dang he's cute!

Is this normal male behavior, or does this just happen to me? Apparently, pushing men away with honesty and integrity actually draws them back like a boomerang. Who knew?