As a mid-20s Manhattanite who leads a hectic life reliant on long hours, late evenings, and public transportation, I’ve often considered what would happen if I ever found myself in a threatening situation. Standing more than six feet tall in my favorite wedges, with fiery red hair and freckly arms, I’ve thought of myself less as a meek target and more as a ginger Amazon. Be warned, potential attackers: this chick is a former figure skater, a regular yogi, and a long-distance runner. Keep reading »
One of my mother’s favorite pastimes, aside from texting me my daily horoscope, is playing Yenta for her 30-something single daughter. Only she doesn’t try to set me up with nice Jewish boys. No, she prefers to shop for my potential suitors on reality television.
It all started after the guy who I thought was my soulmate dumped me suddenly. I was devastated. Perhaps in an attempt to sooth my pain, my mother vowed to find me another guy, someone better.
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When I married Jason on August 7, 2010, the same day as his 29th birthday, we didn’t feel that marriage would change our relationship dramatically. After five years of dating, we were true partners-in-crime who had traveled the world together, raised two small dogs as though they were our children, and enjoyed daily debriefing sessions involving beers and work dramas we called “Power Hours.” Classifying us as genuine best friends would be an understatement. However, when Jason was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) on April 2, 2011, our world and our relationship was flipped upside-down. Everything changed — and I don’t just mean the obvious cancer hurdle. Striving to feel like a normal newlywed couple was, and still is, the most difficult challenge. Keep reading »
Recently, while sitting in the kitchen as a friend helped me dye my hair, the topic turned to death. We had both experienced close friends dying in our early twenties, and we were discussing how we dealt with it. I sat facing away from her, as she checked the foils on my hair. “I just have to think that they are in a better place, in heaven,” she said.
I thought about those words for a minute. Then I replied, “For me, it soothes me to know there is no after-life. Like, there is completion in it. They are gone, that was their life, and it’s okay. I don’t have to worry about seeing them again. It’s been helpful to really process their death and know they are gone.”
My friend was intrigued. “I’d never thought about it that way,” she said.
The truth was I hadn’t always either. I identify as an atheist now. But I haven’t always. Keep reading »
Most people have encountered a crazy ex-girlfriend in some form, a being to be pitied and scorned. It was frightening how easy it was to find myself, normally a level-headed, rational woman, turning into one. Keep reading »
When I was in my late 20s, I had a crush on a guy I worked with. He was tall and preppy, and looked like he’d stepped out of a J. Crew catalog. Every Monday morning I’d skip down the aisle, lean on the wall of his cubicle, and ask him how his weekend was, and he’d tell me about the restaurant he went to or the movie he saw.
He loved music, and I thought I could love him, so I invited him to see my friend and her band rehearse one night. She was an incredible up-and-coming singer who had the same manager as Alicia Keys, and my crush was thrilled to get to go to her rehearsal.
Afterwards, we stopped at his apartment. I took my Joss Stone CD out of my knapsack. “I think you’ll like this,” I said, handing it to him. He put it in his stereo, turned up the music, and turned off the lights.
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