human, being

Spa Bliss with Laurel
June 11, 2009, 9:28 pm
Filed under: Friendship | Tags: , , , ,

I am not 40. No, really. My driver’s license may proclaim today to be my 40th birthday, but my skin and toes say otherwise. Because today, Laurel and I celebrated the beginning of the second half of our lives at Copperfalls Aveda Spa in Castle Rock. And not only am I big bowl of mush, I am absolutely glowing.

I’m a regular massage-getter and card-carrying member of Massage Envy. Lately, I’ve been getting a lot of deep tissue work, which feels more like punishment than pleasure most days. Today, I got a lovely aromatherapy Swedish massage from Tony, complete with candlelight and eucalyptus oil to calm down my “fire” disposition. Ooh, and after he rubbed my feet for about 10 minutes, he wrapped them in warm, moist towels. Oh. My. God.

Lunch followed, during which I wolfed down a tiny quiche and salad, then half of Laurel’s oversized spinach salad. Yum. I was too blissed out to understand that during my facial–cool mud-like stuff painted on my face, neck and upper chest, then wiped with warm towels–we were under yet another tornado alert. I snoozed to the sound of pouring rain upon the roof while my aesthetician gave me an endless arm massage with hot stones, then rubbed my scalp with scented oil.

I drank copious amounts of Aveda tea–which starts off stark on the tongue and morphs into a silky sweetness that the proprietor said was sweet fennel. Finally, Laurel and I sat in a sunny room together and got pedicures. My toes are now a lovely irridescent turquoise color. I caught up on the latest gossip about Jon & Kate, and Halle Berry’s new short hair, and Jennifer Hudson’s alleged pregnancy. Good times.

Because the spa is under construction–an understatement, as my massage room was constructed of plastic and fabric walls with velcro closures–we got a discount. We also walked away with the holy grail of spa experiences: Samples!!

Afterward, all gooey and blissed out with Kleenex stuck between our toes to keep the polish safe, we stopped for coffee and pastry at the shop that supplied our lunches, then drove (with the top down on her Miata) to our favorite metaphysical bookstore. There, we both indulged in a clairvoyant reading with a woman whose energy was so strong it literally felt like she was plugging into me. We talked about the theme for the next year of my life (letting go of the warrior energy that has served me so well and entering a time of receiving).

Laurel drove me home, and we talked about our readings over the wind that swirled our hair. We took a self-portrait sitting on the hood of her car. We exchanged gifts–I got her a turtle necklace (her animal totem) from Santa Fe, and she gave me an adorable turquoise purse and a bunch of little things inside–and said goodbye. She’s one of the few people I can hang out with for 8 hours and be ready for more. We know each other so well, we’re almost two halves of the same sea shell. It’s difficult to make friends as a grown-up, and I am so blessed to have her … and what I hope will be a longstanding birthday tradition.

Now, I’m going to cook Steve and I a steak, open a bottle of wine, and cuddle with my honey. It’s been a blissful day. Just what I needed to kick off the 4th decade.


Days of Grace: 81-84/365
May 26, 2009, 12:18 pm
Filed under: Days of Grace, Depression, Fitness, love and relationships | Tags:
  1. a four-day weekend
  2. with lots of time to myself
  3. sleeping … and sleeping some more … and taking naps
  4. while listening to the rain against the roof
  5. two very good massages
  6. epsom salts for post-massage soaks
  7. after a couple of months away from doing pushups, I can still knock out 40 in a workout (but on my knees, but 40 nonetheless)
  8. taking time to take care of myself
  9. new prescriptions that will allow me to step down off the Wellbutrin, which has been at the base of my anxiety, over the next 2 weeks
  10. the basement is clean and organized, thanks to a day of hard work between me and Steve
  11. the house is clean, thanks to another day of hard work between me and Steve
  12. the garden is prepped for annuals (thanks to another few hours of joint hard work)
  13. tons of rain, so the dirt will be easy to dig in
  14. Judi, my new therapist, who is already helping me make inroads using a technique called PSYCH-K
  15. Walking into my office today, forgetting that I left it spotless last Thursday. What a treat not to walk into a mess. I’ll have to keep it up somehow.
  16. Dinner with Lauren tonight
  17. A two-day extension of our open enrollment, otherwise I would be SOL on benefits in 2009-2010.
  18. A three-day break from the computer. I was becoming addicted.
  19. Bing cherries on sale at Sunflower for $1.69 a pound
  20. Reservations at a cute Santa Fe B&B in just 9 days, followed by 2 weeks of blissful vacation

May 19, 2009, 7:28 pm
Filed under: divorce | Tags: , , ,

Tonight, L came home from dinner with her dad wearing a silver necklace with a small disc pendant. The letters L-O-V-E are punched out.

L: Look what Miss S gave me tonight!

Me: Ooh, that’s pretty. Why did she give it to you?

L: Because she said she loves me like a daughter. She got one for E and H too. E’s says hope and H says peace.

I tell her it’s pretty. She looks at me guiltily. I wonder what’s coming next.

L: You know, dad and S are getting married in two Octobers, right?

Me: Yeah …

L: Well, I was wondering if it would be OK if after they get married … She pauses. Looks away. Looks at me.

Me: um, humm

L: Well, would it be OK if I call S Mom, too?

Ouch. Ouch ouch ouch ouch ouch. I try to smile. I don’t want her to call anyone but me Mom. I’M MOM damnit.

Me: … Well, yes, but as long as you remember who your Momma is.That’s me.

L: Of course, Mommy. I know that you’re my first mom.

L looks at me seriously: You know what the best thing is Momma? I’ve always wanted them to get married because then my dad will have a family. Like you and Steve have a family. So that means I don’t have to worry about him being lonely when I’m not with him.

I feel her sorrow that her dad hasn’t had the family I’ve had for the past several years. Even with the girlfriends, none has been serious enough to warrant such ideas as calling them mom. I try to be the bigger person, when all I want to do is tell her no, you can’t, because it hurts me. But it’s not about me, is it? It’s about her happiness.

Me: You know, the best thing about our hearts is we’re capable of loving lots of people a whole lot at the same time.

L: Yeah, our hearts are like balloons that we can fill and fill and fill with love, and they get bigger and bigger but never pop.

Food for thought from an 7-year-old.

Protected: State of being
May 14, 2009, 8:04 pm
Filed under: love and relationships, wedding

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3,159 emails lighter
May 11, 2009, 2:41 pm
Filed under: divorce, love and relationships | Tags: , ,

It’s been a long time since I’ve cleaned out the sent box on my personal email. Since May 2005 long. 3,159 emails long.

My favorite photo of me and Steve

My favorite photo of me and Steve, circa Feb. '06. We're love-stoned!

Going through my sent box was an archeological dig into the past four years of my life. There were passionate emails written during my dating days before I met Steve, most sent to guys I don’t even remember. Correspondence to a woman I co-wrote a book with, to past freelance clients, resume writing clients, my best friends, my mothers. I found an attachment of the first seven chapters of the last novel I worked on, seemingly lost in a computer crash in 2007. I found my favorite photo of me and Steve, taken by his friend Greg two months into our relationship.

It was interesting to remember, for a short time, who I was back in 2005, not even a year into my divorce. But I’m not that girl. I hardly recognized my own voice in my writing. I was a mess and I didn’t know it.  I can see now that I was barely holding it together, but back then I felt like I’d conquered the world. I thought I was past it. I was actively looking for someone new, thinking I was ready. I wasn’t. Really. Not at all. And I think the collection of bad boyfriends I racked up during 2004-2006 is a great illustration.

I’m usually not an accumulator. I’m that person who purges her closets twice a year, who has just one box of sentimental objects, and it’s only half-full. I go through my personal inbox a couple of times a month and file stuff I think I’ll need later in folders. So it seems odd to me that it has been four years since I hit the delete button on my sent box.

I did go through the list first, and I pulled out all the emails sent to Steve and to my ex, anything with pictures in it (many also lost in the great laptop meltdown of 2007), anything else that looked important. That totaled about 250 messages, less than 10% of the whole.

I have a tiny niggling regret, because in effect I just wiped out a significant portion of my history, or at least documentation of my history. However, I feel lighter, freer, more nimble for having let go of all of that stuff that has no purpose in my life anymore.

You should try it.

Protected: The drama continues: MBA
May 4, 2009, 3:42 pm
Filed under: divorce, Parenting & Co-Parenting | Tags: , ,

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Protected: I can’t compete with that New Mommy Smell
April 30, 2009, 11:42 am
Filed under: divorce, Parenting & Co-Parenting | Tags: , , ,

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