For nearly two years I was with the man I thought I was going to marry, have children with and spend the rest of my life with. I loved him so all-consumingly that I worried about his death. Driving on highways or flying on airplanes, it didn’t matter; I just thought of what risks it posed to him and how terribly in pain I would feel if he were ever to be gone from my life. Even though I felt a bit silly worrying about him, I couldn’t help myself. We used to say we were half of each other. He would say to me that he couldn’t wait to grow old with me. We were intimately close and open with each other in a way I’ve never been before and in a way I know I won’t find easily again.
He broke up with me after New Year’s suddenly and without warning. Now, I marvel at how quickly it’s taken me to fall out of love with him. How very, very odd it is to look inside myself to see if there’s any little bit that still loves him after what he’s done to me. Keep reading »
After much thought and Advil, I have decided I am going on a sex/dating and drinking sabbatical. I went on a six-month sex sabbatical after my breakup from my fiance a few years ago — or, rather, I announced I was going on a six-month sex sabbatical and then it lasted for, I think, around two. It wasn’t a complete failure, in other words. Hilariously, I went on a sex sabbatical because all of my efforts to get laid were being thwarted and I figured I might as well decide to NOT have sex with a purpose.
Meanwhile, I have never taken a significant break from drinking. I didn’t start drinking until I was in college — I believe most people start in high school, so I was a late bloomer in more ways than one — and I remember the night I got drunk the first time as well as you can possibly remember a hazy night 13 years ago. The amount and frequency of my drinking has gone up and down over the years, but I generally consider myself to be a responsible boozer. I don’t drink and drive (easy when you don’t have a car!), I don’t say things I don’t mean, and, for the most part, I don’t do things I actually regret. Keep reading »
I’ve always been kind of a loner. While I’m silly and funny and irreverent with one or two people, I clam up in social settings and in groups. I think this is why I’m a good interviewer: I focus very intently and intensely on one person. More specifically, I need a lot of time in my own head to think. The two activities that I love the most — writing and reading — both require being alone. As with anything, I’m sure I came to be like this with some combination of nurture and nature. I am the youngest of five kids, so I learned as a child to be in the physical presence of other people but still do my own thing. But my parents were pretty preoccupied with stuff going on in my brother’s life from the time that I was 14 years old onward, so I also learned how to be independent. Keep reading »
I came to a new understanding about myself recently. At my session last week, after hearing me go on and on about a recent bout of man-related depression, my therapist cut me off with a revelation. “You know what you are?” Dr. A said. “You’re an extreme emotions junkie. Some people are adrenaline junkies — they get off of some sort of thrill, like jumping out of a plane — but you get off on feeling really good or really bad. It’s what makes you feel the most vibrant, the most alive.” Keep reading »
In the past three days, I have been suddenly and unexpectedly broken up with by my boyfriend of almost two years and asked to move out of the apartment that we have shared for a year and a half. The past few days have been horrible and sad, but mostly filled with dread about the uncertainty of the future. It feels like a nightmare that I am going to wake up from; a few times I’ve asked myself if I lost my mind a la “Black Swan” and this reality isn’t real. This morning I stood in line at Starbucks and pulled back the pinky finger on my hand, bent it so far until it hurt. Okay, I thought, I must be awake and alive. This must actually be my life. I don’t know how it is that I have put on pants every day, brushed my teeth, written emails, written blogs posts, done my laundry, and eaten food. My heart feels so bad I can’t believe I’m not glued to my bedsheets. Maybe I’m just in so much disbelief that I am numb. Keep reading »