Wild Woman

cheryl-strayed-wildI’ve been reading Cheryl Strayed’s memoir, Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Coast Trail, and I’m just about done.  I heard Cheryl speak at a conference at the beginning of the month and decided to check the book out of the library the next week.  The loss of her mother and subsequent deterioration of her marriage and destruction of herself led to her decision to find herself and answers to questions about herself while hiking 11,000 miles over 100 days. Aren’t we all searching for our truth in some way?  I may not need to hike along the west coast to find mine, but reading Cheryl’s story in her own voice reminded me of how important it is to be able to tell my own story, in my voice.  To have a me for me before being a she for someone else – to strip away all associations, affiliations, obligations and distractions and focus solely on who I am by myself. How much can my body and mind handle? What’s my limit?

The book reminded me of a former life goal of mine:  A few years ago, I looked into what it would take to become an Outdoors Woman in my home state of New York.  I was convinced it was something this former Girl Scout should pursue, but I didn’t.  I finished graduate school and got a higher-paying job instead. Reading the book has reignited that spark to revisit the outdoors, though.  I should be able to pitch tent and camp by myself for a few nights with confidence.  I’ve shared this with Mr, and of course, he thinks it’s something we should do together. I agree, and yet I have the burning desire to do this alone… first. Continue reading

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Ordinary People

We’re just ordinary people.
We don’t know which way to go.
‘Cause we’re ordinary people.
Maybe we should take it slow…

Friday night after work, I walked home. I walked home because I had a lot of stuff in my bag, mostly oddly shaped, and I knew it wouldn’t fit easily in a bicycle cart. (I use a city bike-share program for my commute.) I walked home because I was talking to Mr on the phone and we hadn’t talked – really talked – the way we need to talk in a long time.  As a matter of fact, we’d been arguing (or avoiding an argument) for weeks. Our relationship, our long-distance relationship, was a series of good morning texts, trite responses to shallow questions about our days, and “I love you. Good night.” on the phone before falling into a deep, deep sleep.

I knew before I left work what I wanted to say – what I had to say. Continue reading

Sacrifice the single

I like being single. Well, I suppose I should say I liked being single. More accurately, still, I think I liked being unattached. No mortgage payment. No children. No pets (though I love cats). No husband. No boyfriend. Parents in decent health. A skill that can land me a job anywhere, and technology that allows me to do that job from anywhere. I could go and do and be anything. I’m young and love to have fun. I liked being single.

Nothing kills a single buzz like the prospects of marriage. Nothing.

bola-cadena Continue reading

the big 3-0

I turned 30 on Wednesday.  I went for a run, indulged in treats without counting calories, went to work, rode a carousel, received gifts and cards, and had an unexpected but insightful conversation with an older woman at my church.  Turning 30 was an overwhelmingly exquisite experience.  No fuss, but an important milestone taken with full awareness that a significant chapter of my life is ending and many more are before me.

August 8 is also my parents’ wedding anniversary. Yes, though I am an only child, I have always shared my birthday.  My parents were wed on August 8, 1981. Continue reading

Light fare

My email inbox had a treat for me today: a message from the Center for an Urban Future.

I’ve been on CUF’s distribution list for at least 5 years now.  They send reports, articles, and job posts. I tend to find the content informative and interesting, which is why though I no longer live in NYC, I haven’t unsubscribed.

Today’s email was a Save the Date for the organization’s annual gala.  I’m not going to attend, and I’m not familiar with the honorees.  I’m sure they sent the notification to the entire distribution list just in case someone who would not otherwise be inclined to support their cause through a special event might just change their mind and join in the party.  As I read the email, I came across words that I don’t remember ever seeing before: “Light dinner fare and festive attire.”  Well what is this intriguing option for feeding guests at a party on a budget? Hmmm…

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$2 million wedding

How would I spend $2 million on a wedding?

It has taken me all day to come up with an answer to this question. Apparently Good Morning America asked viewers how they’d allocate $2 million on a wedding budget. That’s a very difficult question for me to answer. I have never had to spend $2 million. It’s a real challenge!

But risking getting caught up in dreams that won’t ever come true, I’m going to answer the question as best I can.  Continue reading