Greetings from beautiful Edmonds! This was my sunrise this morning. 🙂
In case anyone out there was wondering about how I fell in love so fast and got engaged so quickly or why I’d enter in to a committed relationship with a man across the country, I’d just like to share this Facebook status from my love this morning. If you know me at all or have been following this blog, you know how I look for signs of life/sparkling stepping stones of magic and other symbols of synchronicity to fuel my ever evolving life. I found my other half. This was our day yesterday but through his eyes.
had a yesterday of synchronicity fun with LoverGirl: from being told by his Inner Voice to call her in the morning only to have the phone ring immediately and see it was her, to having had a dream about her regarding a new situation that we both realized (separately) needed to be discussed and resolved (with the same though independently arrived at resolution) to posting the same selfie on FB, to texting the exact same preferences regarding wedding plans before hearing the others’ thoughts to having similar plans for our days in our 2700 mile wide house of love.
This love thing is coolness.
And this is the selfie, that he texted to me from his hike, that we both shared on Facebook.
What an amazing connection. I just keep pinching myself that we found each other after all this time.
Just another small reminder. I’m embroiled in blogging over at my Middle Child book blog about my writing retreat in Edmonds, WA. I’m diving deep in to it all and otherwise having a tremendous experience.
I’ve decided that in life it’s good to have moments that are expected and that are unexpected. I don’t particularly want to live a life where I see everything coming. Additionally, I don’t want to be a person who lives a life of predictability, where people see me coming either. I like mystery and surprises, ya know, when they are good.
PTSD and hypervigilance sort of rob you of that kind of magical spontaneity in life. Those conditions govern that you must always know or be seeking what’s around the next corner so you don’t get blindsided, steamrolled, devastated.
Yet we know this is all illusion anyway. Life will blindside you and crash and burn all over you. When you least expect it. And if you crush or expend your energy in futility trying to avoid/be prepared the negative forces, you also crush all the delightful surprises and possibilities life is always waiting to offer in your direction. It’s about the opening of eyes and the opening of hands. When you’ve lived a life on a roller coaster squeezing your eyes shut and grasping the bar with all your might, you just miss a lot of stuff.
And it’s never too late to change.
I arrived in Rochester Saturday Jan. 3 through a storm. In fact, Rob and his husband Sean had come down from Sedona the night before as our flight was so early–7:32 to be exact. We had a night of fun and laughter and went to bed early in order to wake at 5am to make it to the airport on time. Consumed with excitement, I awoke at 4 and hopped in a warm bath to leisurely shave my legs. Just moments later Rob was knocking on the door asking if I was decent “um, no I’m in the bathtub” which is the first thing you see when you enter my bedroom. “Our flight is canceled, it’s not leaving until 1pm”. Damn!
Well I finished my bath and crawled back in to bed after calling John giving him the news. Instead of arriving at 2:30 pm, it would be more like 9:30. No worries he said, I need the time to get some stuff done.
We finally got on the plane after a huge mess at the airport and were on our way, finally. It was fun traveling with Rob and our first time doing air travel together! We didn’t have exact seats together so Rob managed it by moving his seat next to mine, in the same row with an empty one between us–SCORE! That plane was about half empty. Weird!
We had a short layover in Chicago and finally landed in Rochester around 10:30pm. Rob had arranged for John and I to have a hotel room (part of his negotiating with me to even do this) so John was waiting there at the Doubletree. It was late and the weather bad so he stayed put and Rob, renting a car anyway, dropped me off.
blurry but happy
My love was waiting outside in the cold and I saw him immediately when we pulled up. I can’t exactly describe the feeling–surreal I guess? I mean here we had fallen in love via all these avenues of communication–from Facebook to Messenger to the phone to Whatsapp (good app by the way to send voice notes and photos) and finally Facetime took us over the edge. We had been seeing each other in real time video for days so now it was just taking it to the next level–in person.
He was taller than I thought (he’s shorter than me) and other than that, exactly as I’d imagined. Bright shining face and we just hugged and hugged laughing on the sidewalk. We grabbed my suitcases and ran inside the hotel rushing toward the elevator. He stopped and grabbed my face, held it, and started kissing me right there in the lobby near the elevator doors. I was breathless. It was a lot to digest.
The room was high on the seventh floor with a view and soft lightning. I sat my stuff down and, I’ll just say it, we were almost instantly making out. ha It’s true. The chemistry between John and I is off the chain. We kind of already knew this but there’s a knowing what you know, right?
I’d say he was more comfortable than me. It had been a long trip, stressful and it was just so much to digest! We finally sat side by side on the bed holding hands and looking out at the expansive view in to the night saying over and over things like “this is surreal isn’t it?”. But it was all good. All good.
The night was fantastic, I’ll just leave it at that. In the morning it looked like the bed had become a centrifuge and clothes had flown all over the room. Flotsam and jetsam. Yes, it was that kind of night. I’ll just say we are completely, over the top, compatible in that department. And neither of us snores! Oh hell yes!
John couldn’t figure out what that bed scarf was for so wrapped it around his head
We had plans to meet Rob and his Mom for brunch the next day so we leisurely got up and as I showered, he organized everything (gotta love that and we found the charming restaurant Rob had picked out. Brunch was good, John was for the first time shy and Rob’s Mom said we were “vibrant”. I’m sure we were glowing. John helped me with my coat, pulled my chair out for me. I’m saying…this is all so new and a long time coming. A gentleman.
After brunch we stopped at Wegman’s grocery store and got groceries for the week. I decided to make a big pot of my homemade Nicaraguan chicken soup which could kind of carry us through. Something that should feel awkward, like being in a grocery store together , was as all things have been, like something we’ve done together for years. Our natural compatibility is truly amazing.
We arrived at his cozy home in rural Pennsylvania in the dark. He immediately started up the wood stove, we had a snack then curled up in his cozy bed. I felt instantly comfortable there.
darling little Lillian I easily bonded with
The next day John had his daughter, Lillian so he went to go get her and I waited at the house. Before leaving he covered me with an extra blanket, left me a voice note saying he had left his robe at the foot of the bed for me to use and had set up the coffee maker for me. When i got up he’d left me a poem on my ipad on the kitchen counter. This MAN! This amazingly nurturing romantic MAN!
I won’t write in detail about the whole week as I’m super super busy right now getting ready to hit the road for Seattle in two days but everything just was wonderful and easy and fun and lots and lots of laughter.
He did work on Tues, Wed and Thurs so I hung out at the house, writing some, listening to a podcast, cooking, just enjoying the simplicity and quiet of his home. At night we would curl up downstairs on his reclining love seat by the woodstove and watch movies in his little home theatre with a big screen TV. We even like all the same movies. Quirky indie films. As his son said, “you are like the female version of my Dad”. It’s uncanny.
homemade popcorn and chocolate for dinner
So, to the big event. He returned home from working on Thursday and I was downstairs listening to the Podcast Serial on my ipad. He still had some reports to finish so went back upstairs and when I finished a half hour later or so, I went up. He turned with a little grin and said “I thought your powers of observation were better than that”. Huh?
He asked me to look around. By the Christmas tree was a large 4 foot white box with a big red bow–the old school kind for bringing long stemmed roses. I opened it and inside were, no surprise, a dozen long stemmed roses of all colors. “I didn’t know what was your favorite so I got them all”. That is so John. His card was equally romantic.
I arranged them in a vase after lots of hugs and kisses and we then set about making our second video in our “Coolness” performance art series. It’s so fun! He has camera equipment as he’s been making crazy videos himself and is interested in film making so I got to see him in action with lighting etc. Impressive! He just uploaded it yesterday so here it is. It was our third “take” so we seem a little stiff but fun anyway. I think you can see the love between us so clearly.
(who knew I’d be getting engaged moments after this?)
After we finished this video, he said “now I need you to go find your other present”. I had no idea where it was or anything so he said “go look where you found the last one”. Embedded in the Christmas tree was a little silver box.
He asked me to sit on the sofa in front of the flowers and the candle we’d lit and open it. Inside was a very fine gold chain. Now this man does nothing without a meaning or sentimentality so I knew a story was coming. He started talking about a locket and I was thinking a locket would be forthcoming to put on the chain and this was the first step.
But no, he slid off the sofa, on two knees in front of me, reached in to his back pocket and pulled out a gold ring.
What he said was something like this:
“This is my father’s wedding band. When he died (John was 9), my mother wore it around her neck on a gold chain until she died (John was 15). My father came to me in a dream and told me he was happy with you for me so I want to give you his ring and ask you to wear it around your neck as my mother did. I want to renew this symbol in our lives and I want to ask you if you will marry me”.
looks silver here but it’s yellow gold–both the chain and ring
Just like that. I’m sure I gasped and covered my mouth and said something that sounded like yes. He took the chain from my hand, put his father’s ring on it and clasped it back on my neck. We hugged and kissed and he cried but I was so in shock I didn’t even cry but just kept saying “oh my God” over and over.
We sat on the sofa staring at each other saying “we’re engaged!” repeatedly.
I’d brought a small bottle of red wine that I’d brought home from my last trip to Rancho La Puerta that was sitting on his counter all week (John doesn’t really drink alcohol much at all). He said “let’s make a toast and open your wine”. So we did, sitting there on the sofa sipping red wine and repeating over and over “we just got engaged!”. “We’re getting married!”.
I’m telling you it’s the most natural thing in the world. No fear. No drama. No waiting for the other shoe to drop. All those things in my life are over. This is my man, the one I’ve waited for for a very very long time. I feel utterly secure with him and myself and my more expanded self and nothing but excited for our future.
Just to backtrack, before I headed out there, he had casually said to me in a conversation once “just so you know I have a plan and a formal proposal will be coming”. It didn’t surprise me he said that as we both knew where this was heading very early on. We just knew. I didn’t think it would come on this trip but I knew it was coming. Heck, we didn’t even know this trip was happening!
I then told him that receiving a traditional diamond ring was really not important to me and actually not my preference. I have beautiful diamond rings from my grandma I can’t even wear (at once anyway) and at 55, that ritual isn’t important to me. I told him my preference was to have matching, unique bands on both our fingers so that when you look at our hands they match exactly. So this ring around my neck is the most perfect symbol I could ever imagine. It’s just absolutely perfect for me/us.
John and I are crafting an unusual and unique way to move in the world as well. Neither of us is relocating now and it’s just as we want it. It was so liberating to say to him that I would prefer a life with more space and fluidity. I said “between us, we have three homes. How about a life where we move between them, sometimes together, sometimes apart?”. He gasped and asked a question he’s now asked dozens of times “where did you come from?”.
We are two loners, two introverts finding each other. Being in each other’s space 24/7 is not our preference. We both need lots of alone time. This arrangement fits our personalities perfectly and I couldn’t be more relieved we’re on the same page.
Neither of us ever thought we’d need to get married again. But once we found each other, it’s all we could think about. Something about being married creates an anchor for us to have this open and free unconventional lifestyle (don’t get me wrong, it includes 100% monogamy and commitment). We have one rule: we don’t separate without a clear plan for when we are together again.
This time it’s Feb 11–one day after his 55th birthday and just before Valentine’s Day. We will be together in Edmonds (where I arrive in just 6 short days), then Seattle, then on the road, then Tempe then Sedona for the film festival. My family will meet him then. I can’t wait.
I miss him but it’s so amazing to have someone to miss. I’m still pinching myself that I found this man who is my dream–the ultimate of friendship with the ultimate of passion. Crazy passion on so many levels it’s off the chart! Yet fun and friendship. I’ve never laughed so hard with a man in my life.
I’ll end quoting Billy Crystal from When Harry Met Sally “when you finally realize you want to spend the rest of your life with someone, you want the rest of your life to start, as soon as possible”.
this is my man!
That’s it! Thanks for all the love. I finally got my amazing love story.
This man responded to my poem, my heart and soul in black and white and off we went.
I’m positively shimmering with gratitude and excitement.
bloodshot eyes as I left for the airport our last morning and he snapped this
As my daughter woke (ever so briefly) after I turned off my light, i conducted the reading.
I conduct readings when my path crosses with another and I feel a resonating connection. Readings help me clarify my role and further clarify my path. Like you, I am also suggestible and sensitive. In the past, these traits have not always been positive attributes.
Tonight, our exchange certainly resonated, KT Cool Lady (that is so funny)!
I’m not sure where you are at on your path and don’t wish to be intrusive. I also don’t know how comfortable you are regarding the tarot. Though my demeanor is casual, my attitude is rather serious and very respectful when it comes to spirit work.
It was a very positive reading. If you are interested in details, let me know and I will oblige.
If not, that’s also cool. It’s all good and as it is meant to be.
These are some of the first words John ever sent me. We had spoken earlier that evening during that unexpected earthquake in Sedona and he woke up in the middle of the night and conducted a Tarot card reading on us. He now says this was the moment he realized that I was the woman for him. The last card he turned over revealed The Lovers and he knew, although he had committed to a life of celibacy and spirituality for 21 months, that his love had arrived. He was very delicate about how he imparted this knowledge to me. Something along the lines of “I know where this relationship is headed. If you’d like me to tell you, I will. If not, I can let it unfold. But I will tell you, this will be a mutually fulfilling relationship”.
I basically said “don’t tell me”. haha
John asked me to marry him two days ago on 1/8/2014. His proposal was so completely unique, so completely him and us that I will share the whole story, with pics, once I’m more clear headed. I just got home and my head is spinning in love. My life is changing all for the good and I couldn’t be happier. He is my dream come true and our unfolding life more magical and more love-filled than I could ever dream. We have had no doubt for some time that this is the relationship we’ve been longing for, waiting for, praying for, still holding out a glimmer of hope for. And it arrived, finally, while we are still young enough to enjoy it (we are 4 months apart in age–I’m older 😉 ).
Yes, readers, I’m engaged. Holy crap! I’ll be getting married this year to this wonderful man John David Higham. We will be offering to the world a new paradigm of marriage and one that is uniquely suited to us and all of our needs and wants. At this age, you get to create basically whatever you want I’ve decided.
yes, he can cook too–made his homemade pizza with dough from scratch!
We are documenting our very first exchange ever from Facebook (which I think is pretty cool and funny) via a series of videos during our travels. Yesterday it was Mark Twain’s grave.
He has the first and third posted at the moment on his Youtube channel because the second one was filmed on a different camera so he needs to get it uploaded. Probably by tomorrow.
This is the first one:
We are having so much fun. It is a life of laughter and love.
popcorn, chocolate and movies that night
I’ve found my match, my twin, my equal in this loving, nurturing, creative and brilliant man. Who is mine. And a writer. And a mystic. And the most romantic funny person I’ve ever met. And he’s equally as crazy about me.
(interesting I made this meme just weeks before this earthquake ignited in my life)
I’m here at John’s house alone while he takes his son David to deal with some car issues. It’s very cold, very snowy outside and very quiet in here. I love it.
I go to Rancho La Puerta for many reasons , not the least of which this kind of quiet and solitude. There is no TV here, light ambient sounds, very little concrete and views as far as my eyes can see. I love it. It’s so stimulating to the creative mind. I feel very comfortable here in his cozy house alone which says alot about both of us.
I’ve been kind of outspoken about this newfound, unexpected dream that arrived in my life on many fronts. The support I’ve received is truly overwhelming. The gaps in that support are interesting to note as well and something John and I have been noticing and sharing about.
One interesting thing about a dream realized, I mean truly realized, is that there is a quiet confidence about it that is untainted or unaffected by any outside support. When I was married, a lifetime ago, that relationship was all built on outside stimulus to validate itself. It was built on shaky internal ground–as a man/wife situation- so I remember constantly seeking outside stimulation/validation to keep myself tethered to it.
The other, what I would call, truelove experiences in my life–two to be exact- were self sustaining. The cord was so strong on the inside that outside radiance was a nice addition but totally unnecessary. This is the same here with John. It’s such a strong fit, such a feeling of rightness, so validated by everydayness that anyone’s approval or disapproval is a distant voice. I’m hoping that the sun shining off of us is so bright that others feel the warmth and I think they can. In the words of Rob’s mother who I met for the first time the day after meeting John for the first time in person “the two of you are so vibrant”. 92 year old wisdom; I”ll take it. I feel vibrant. And it keeps growing.
All of this has led me to contemplate how we view love collectively as a culture. In some cases, the people the closest to me are the least excited about this. This is a curious collective mindset we have on this. That it is somehow ok to fear love, to feel a need for protection, to be cautious and express it, to not get behind a person’s dreams until something validates it’s ok to do so. It’s a curious permission we allow and indulge in.
I’ve thought about other big dreams being manifest around me–my brother joining the chorus, a friend buying a dream house, a client embracing her dreams for truly healing something. I think things are different in categories not having to do with LOVE. Is it so scary that we all believe it requires different protections around it? Different expectations? Different fears?
I wonder how my brother’s chorus journey would have been different if I had said “ok I’ll believe this chorus thing is real for you once you get on stage and complete a concert”. I’ll withhold my support and stand in silence, or in judgment that it can truly happen for you until its proven to me in a language I can understand.
Or “I’ll talk to you about this house you are dreaming about once you’ve actually purchased it, moved in to it and settled in to to my satisfaction so I can get behind this for you”.
I guess, writing this, I do have feelings about this. And my feelings are, standing back in judgment when someone is realizing a long held dream is making an imprint. You find out who truly believes in you and who doesn’t. And that will surprise you.
I think also that my very identity is being challenged–to myself as well as others. I’ve been so long identified as someone who was highly successful in business, money, friendship, travel and highly unsuccessful in love. What if I became a person who really did round things out and became a true dream realizer? How would that affect my inner and outer world?
I know what I’m standing in is real. I trust my judgment and I don’t need validation. And I appreciate everyone who is trusting it right along with me. I feel bolstered by this and the reality of this dream becomes more and more a solid ground that I’m resting in. And mostly I’m landing in this place of rest with this man I’ve not ever felt. A kindred spirit, someone who truly understands me, who truly is connected and bonded to me , is the kind of man/ relationsip I never dared to dream so high for. The kind I would cross any territory to take the hand of. And with an utter sense of adventure and attachment to no outcomes, embrace all of the not-knowingness of.
Love is a curious thing. It ignites and it illuminates.
For now I’ve decided to say yes and and yes and yes to this dream coming more alive each day…and to allow the shadows where it’s brilliance can’t shine just yet, remain. And direct the radiance on them just the same knowing the tree or the cloud or the wind itself which blocks them is their illusion…while I choose to shine.
Greetings from the snow flurries in rural PA! I flew in last Sat to Rochester with my friend Rob after several lonnnnng delays and finally arrived after 11pm to my first meeting with my love John David Higham.
We were already in love but this was obviously important, a face to face meeting. Ya know, a relationship is much better with that component. I don’t want to go on and on here as I’m relaxing and listening to the podcast Serial which John is at work so just popping in to say hi and that things are going along better than I’d ever expected.
We are unbelievably compatible, I’ve met his adult son and 3 year old daughter (who we spent the entire day with yesterday) as well as his exwife. All went off amazingly well and without conflict.
Our only problem is lack of sleep as there’s never enough time in the day when you’re in love.
It was such a good idea to come here when i did even though the timing is nutty. I’ll be returning home, working for a few days then headed off to Seattle to write my book. Crazy and exhilarating and exciting. Everything a romance should be as far as I’m concerned.
Ok, here are a few photos which depict this amazing moment in my life. Lots of support for this remarkable magic love story around me for which I’m so grateful. xxoo Here’s to Love!
2014 started off, I’ll just say it, in pure Hell. A conflict erupted in my family, one that had been brewing for at least a decade, one I’d been avoiding yet was presenting a clear and present danger to all of us. A conflict involving a sociopath preying upon one member of my family which I could no longer ignore. It’s hard to know how to manage that kind of evil. Poking that rattlesnake will surely awake a sleeping demon yet ignoring it allows the virus to spread, however insidious it may seem.
It was on a ride back from Sedona in very early January that I realized I needed to take action and action I did take on many fronts. There was drama in the household, threats made, my very safety in question, lawyers involved and basically a clusterfuck of chaos (pardon my language but there are times that word has to be used and this is one of them). Ultimately it landed in an arena of good– meaning protection– and I have no regrets. It just went on, in various forms and stages, for about two months. It took a hell of a lot of my time and energy and in some ways was the line of demarcation to me rising to a place of serious responsibility in my family. This happens with aging parents. I’ve said, in this year, I became the patriarch of sorts in my family dynamic. While at the same time being the nurturing mother. It’s been a demanding year yet not without extreme rewards.
On other fronts I experienced two episodes of serious betrayal that hit me so hard and unexpectedly and consecutively I barely had time recover between Tsunamis. Well, to be honest, I didn’t recover between those tidal waves. Both involved females in my life. I’ve been fortunate that I’ve never been outright bullied really in my whole life. I’ve always been at least mildly well liked if not pretty popular. I had no idea what/why/how all of this was going on but it most certainly was. It’s very hard to feel victimized like that and not define oneself a victim. I managed to navigate those waters riding that balance beam, sometimes falling off, always launching myself back on.
It wasn’t easy, not at all, but since I tend to seek patterns and signs in my life, I saw there was one common denominator in these traumatic events: me. Even if I didn’t find myself to blame particularly, I did find myself standing in the center and I found myself, through tears, uttering the words to my dear friend Rob “I have to change. I have to change”.
It’s daunting, terrifying yet also liberating to stand in that truth and at the same time having no idea just what needs to change. Just that you have to to be happy…to evolve.
I looked around my life and realized the path was laid out right in front of me. And it was called Myofascial Release. The modality I practice has literally saved my life facilitating my healing from the terrible anxiety disorder that plagued me for over a decade and nearly took me down. I stood in that Sedona mirror and realized this was a no brainer–I have a house there, more time since I’ve kind of semi retired this year and can take courses for half price. I set about throwing myself in to a place of Beginner again and started over my training with the introductory course I’d not taken since 1989. It was so refreshing.
I took six courses this year in about a five month window. I loved it.
And I broke down in the deepest sobs, those uncontrollable sobs that take over your entire body rendering you useless, during one of the courses that I can only guess was a turning point. Something deep was unearthed, released, acknowledged, set free.
I’d also had kind of a falling out or a distancing from a person who is very important to me and who’s been in my life for over two decades. I consciously set about healing that relationship and honestly learned some deep lessons about true forgiveness–being on both ends of that equation this year.
I learned that, if a deep injury is inflicted on a relationship and you (I) sincerely desire resolution and reconciliation and healing it takes a sincere effort and many followed-through steps. The strategy I employed was to seek any possible infraction on my part in the conflict and identify it, seek inside what might have been propelling it, express to this dear person on my knees in humility that I desperately wanted to recover the relationship, explain some things I guessed might have been going on with me, let them know what I intended to do about them to heal myself first, then go about doing them in a very obvious way. And that’s what I did. It was a matter of digging deep, owning absolutely anything I could, expressing it then setting about with my ACTIONS to prove I was serious about my intentions to heal the rift between us, starting inside myself.
I knew I was out of the woods when a tap on my shoulder came one day and a whisper in my ear saying this dear person to me had invited me to lunch with a private, intimate group and I knew then and there I’d won their trust back.
On the receiving end of the forgiveness front, I participated in a dynamic with a dear friend who, for reasons I’m sure are completely unknown to her, betrayed my trust in such a confusing and painful manner that it caught us both by surprise. However, we decided, in fear and lack of intelligence or motivation to pretend it didn’t happen and move forward as if it was a speedbump in the schemata of our friendship. This was a mistake. It was there and I couldn’t look at her without seeing it. She then behaved again in a similar dismissive fashion after that decision to not deal with things and I knew I just couldn’t trust her. I had to let it go. She tried coming back around, I believe in fear that I might throw her under the bus as she had me, and I reassured her that I would not (and have not and will not) but I never got the feeling that a sincere effort was even inside her, much less displayed that could have led to the deep healing we would have needed to regain trust again. It was sad to let her go but at the same time, it was the Truth. I couldn’t pretend that things didn’t happen/were different/were unchanged. She knew it too.
Sometimes you just have to know when to walk away with Grace and this was one of those times. Sad, yes, but necessary.
I learned this year first hand that corny cliche about how people come in to your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. I let go of another friend who I realized was in my life for a reason/season but it was time to move forward. No regrets, no hard feelings. But if you stay too long at the party, you will develop just those things. As a person with such a history of abandonment, hanging on to people long after the relationship’s expiration date has been a comfort zone of mine. And not a healthy one. Finding the clarity to let that friend go, clearly and without reservation or regret, was also a sign of my growth.
I started coming out of the fog of those traumas in the summer, right around the time I insisted that my brother audition for the Phoenix Metropolitan Men’s Chorus and the miracle of that lifted us all, especially me. I’d sunken so deep I’d forgotten that miracles are happening all the time around me/us so my eyelids were lifted again through that opening in the sky and magic started re-entering my life. Rather, I lost my temporary blindness to it.
Around the same time, I decided to get a puppy. That decision also was a liberating lift to my life. I’d woken up one beautiful morning in Sedona and thought “I’ve had such a wonderful weekend up here–hiking, hanging with friends, dancing with Wendy, indie films, good food–but I’m lonely”. I felt as if there was this void near me. I looked down at the foot of my bed and saw my small stuffed fox there and thought “my life would be totally different if I had a little companion to go with me places–a dog”. Just the idea gave me such joy, such incomparable relief, that I set about making a plan.
Concurrently, last summer, the notion of writing my memoir was born in me. I’d resisted this for two decades despite many people’s urging. I don’t know, suddenly I felt I had a story to tell. I knew I am not incarnated to just regurgitate a tale or tales of sorrow/trauma/woe. I had to find a bigger story. And one day it just came to me. Middle Child was born and in October a plan was seeded.
After another brilliant trip to the Seattle area I knew what I had to do and set about making plans. Two days after I returned I had secured the studio in Edmonds, laid out my life to make it happen and set myself on that trajectory which has been so utterly supported by everything, everything lifting and buoying me that it validates the very story itself. I will write a story of trauma and triumph. Of sinking and rising. A story of hope and inspiration. Which we are living in my family and that is a legacy I’m born for.
It’s interesting that once you commit to such a thing, you feel a sense of wonder and obligation to keep rising. You leap and are given wings. Making the decision to write the book has definitely changed my life.
Which leads me to the single most important thing that happened all year, perhaps all decade, perhaps my entire life.
I was found by my soulmate.
Sometime in November I was asked to join a writing group by a friend who was a member and who has written a memoir which includes other people’s stories including my own. He knew I was planning to head out to write my book and thought this small Facebook group would be a good support system for me. It’s full of people, like me, who aren’t professional writers but who are writing nonetheless.
Everyone is asked to introduce themselves and so I did with as much candor and tact I could find but the reality is this group is about soul writing and I would say more elevated lifting subjects and here comes Kathy Monkman “hey I’m writing a memoir about homicide and schizophrenia”. Well, there it is. The truth.
Let me try and smash this love story in to a nutshell right now as it’s so broad and such a cornucopia of magic, it really is hard to minimize through this keyboard right now.
Let’s just say, my love is a member of this group and reached out to me, friending me. One thing that is really unusual and cool is how many couples, literally, have a transcript of their first encounter? Well, we do. Our very first exchange is documented on my Facebook wall. I have a plan to put it in to a performance art piece and he’s made us a Youtube channel to do just that. Stay tuned. 😉
A few days after that fun exchange, I shared a poem I titled “Safe” (posted below) on that page and he replied in a curious fashion. He asked why I included a fox and not an owl in my imagery. I sat there looking at his response wondering why he would even consider an owl. That ignited a 77 public post exchange late in to the night that led one of my friends to write me privately pointing out “you were flirting with that psychic last night”. Yes, he is psychic but his profession is as a Psychologist. He’s also a published author and has written his own gritty memoir about his childhood. The similarities of our upbringings is uncanny–both having lost parents while we were still in single digits and suffered some pretty severe abuse after that. We both understand each other in very deep ways. Yet we are also both thrivers. He said he looked at my photo online and saw a “warm white aura” around me and felt compelled to contact me. He also reads Tarot cards and performed a reading the night after our first conversation which revealed to him a deep message that I was the woman he was waiting for.
Both of us had pretty much let go of the search for a mate and were finding fulfillment in other arenas and BAM, we got hit like lightning.
Neither of us has ever felt like this before–a camararderie and ease and understanding and intense intense passion. We live across the country from each other and, oddly, have no worries or fears about how this relationship can find it’s way together. I think when you reach this age (I’m 55, he turns 55 in Feb, my father’s birthday) things look different. We’ve decided to challenge the paradigms of love and create our own unique form of how this will look and work for both of us with ease and aliveness. We are both fiercely independent and kind of loners so too much togetherness is kind of a hazard. It’s so nice to not have to explain that to someone and breathe the same sigh of relief.
All I know, without a doubt is, this man is The One I’ve been waiting for. Over Thanksgiving weekend I went to a Stupa in Sedona to send prayers to an injured friend with Rob and afterward shared with him I’d had three dreams, three nights in a row, that I was in love. That I’d woken up feeling in love. That lingering glow I’d not felt in really fifteen years to be honest. Rob said to me “maybe someone is coming your way”. I likely shrugged and said “nah I’m getting a dog”.
John contacted me that very night.
And we’ve been off and running ever since.
Rob had a dream over Christmas that he was walking me down the aisle to marry this man. Then he convinced me later that weekend to fly out with him to the East coast so I can meet John before our scheduled plan (he has a plane ticket to come to Seattle at the end of my writing Sabbatical and drive back to Phoenix with me). So, two days from now, Rob and I are flying together to Rochester NY and John is driving there to pick me up and we will be together in the physical world for the first time for a week. Yeow! I’m so excited I can’t stand it! Yes I can!
I know this conjurs up fears and doubts in people but neither of us have any. None. We already know each other and thanks to lots of technology (8 ways at least including our own private blog we created) we communicate all day long. In fact tonite, New Year’s Eve, due to the fact I’m stuck in Tempe waiting out a blizzard while my friends and family party in Sedona, we are meeting on Facetime to meditate together as he rings in the New Year in Pennsylvania. << We ended up staying on Facetime through my NYE for 4 hours (I was writing this last night and got interrupted with Happy New Year).>> At the time HIS clock struck midnight, fireworks went off outside MY window two time zones away. That’s just the way things are with us.
That all was a pretty big nutshell I guess. I’m just so grateful, excited, blown away, shocked and dumbfounded that this all happened. Yet, when I look at my treasure map, there he is, all over it. And proudly displayed in the upper left corner are the fox and owl, just waiting to find each other off the map. The owl even has binoculars which he clearly used to seek me out. It’s just bliss, what can I say? I’m so happy.
We will make Treasure Maps together next week at his place. We’re already gathering supplies. 😀
As soon as I return I leave again for WA and I’m so ready to write it’s constantly knocking at my brain. Please stay tuned over on the other blog for all the updates I’m doing there. I’ve started packing and am ready. Another MFR practitioner dropped out of the sky to be available to treat my clients as needed while I’m gone. The support around this project is just unfathomable.
My puppy situation is on hold at the moment. I need to just see how this new relationship shakes down before I take that on. I’m not ruling it out but I’m just being smart about taking on too many big tasks. And as John said to me “dogs are all about loyalty–and you found that with me”. Awwww.
Well that’s kind of a year in review for me. I hope you all out there reading are having a wonderful NYE and doing exactly what you want to be doing with exactly who you want to be doing it with, even if that’s with yourself which is it’s own blessing. I know this very very clearly.
And thank you for coming along with me all this year. It was a wild ride and will likely get wilder this coming year but now I’m not alone for the first time in a very very long time in that intimate partner kind of way.
I feel so lucky I’m likely covered in bruises from pinching myself.