Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Here's the raw truth: I'm not taking a blogging break to pursue any other projects other than myself.

If you read my other blog, you're well aware of the laundry list of things that need to get done around here but none are more important than job of "cleaning up my act" and taking some much-needed time to fully absorb what that means.

And here's where it starts.

I'm seeing a phenomenal therapist who has encouraged (mandated?) that I spend one hour each day with a journal and a pen. And a whole lot of quiet. Journaling is not the same as blogging and that's why I have to step back from the blogs for awhile.

I found this out the hard way. On my first night of the "journaling job," I dimmed the lights, lit a candle, opened my new and beautiful journal and stared at it. For about 30 minutes. Then I wrote:

I don't want to fucking do this.

But I did and I am and what's coming forth is gut-wrenching and it's insightful and it's powerful and it scares me and it makes me believe that I can be a better, more kinder person - to myself - first, and to my child, my family and my friends.

I have about three weeks into the journal. I write a lot. Some times, I sit for hours on end with the journal and the black pen I've come to love. I've cried a lot. I've dug deep into the corners of my heart and into the dark spaces of my memory to find remnants, pieces of what I believe to be true, to be relevant, to be helpful in this process.

There are so many events that have occurred over this last year that have made me pause and think, even plead, "I need help!"

No one ever taught me how to deal with rejection. Especially with men. No one could tell me what to do when my ex showed up so many times with promises, only to circle around mere weeks, days later with a "serious" girlfriend. Someone who will likely move in with my ex and my son. Soon.

No one ever suggested how I might feel with another maternal figure in Ben's life.

No one ever told me how to handle my father. I never knew how to be his daughter and as the years have gone by, we've gotten better - he and I - but I still feel like I walk a football field of eggshells - always - and I'll never understand why a daughter must have zero expectations of her father so as not to be disappointed.

No one ever said to me that my own mother may never relate to me. That despite living together for nearly a year and a half, we would be complete strangers.

No one thought Florida was a good idea. No one ever encouraged me to date as much as I do. No one ever said to me, "You don't need validation from men. You will always have validation from the one boy who means the most: Ben, and that is all that matters. At least for now."

No one promised that a career would be easy or that faith in God would not waver.

No one showed me a healthy way to eat, without the influences of emotions, guilt and torture.

No one gently hugged me and said, "Your family history is so warped. No wonder you can't sleep. It's not your fault."

No one gave me an identity other than, "single mom" and sometimes, "struggling, sleep-deprived single mom."

And I never had a reason to believe that I was much more than that.

Until now.

I'm investing a good deal of my free time into this process and there are days that I feel so much more free and days that I wonder why I waited 39 years to begin and days that I think that there is such an enormous elephant in front of me and how will I ever even begin to move this giant and stinky creature out of my space?

One inch, one word, one breath, one promise at a time.

That's all I have. For now.

And I have a journal full of amazing thoughts - my very first journal - something that has become my lifeline, my anchor, my home. (Michelle M, are you reading this???)

"Home to me is reality and all I need is something real."

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


I'm still not feeling inspired to write. But I want to get this out so that I can move on; literally, figuratively, emotionally and any other way possible.

Chris, my own version of "Big", is a world class asshole. A fake, a fraud, an egomaniac.

Everyone keeps asking me, "How was your weekend?"

My weekend was fabulous. I stayed at the Ritz and ate amazing food and drank lots of great wine and vodka and I saw a fantastic city (St Augustine) and I loved every moment of my beloved band, OAR.

But I didn't have such a great time to be incapable of ignoring the gigantic red flags that were popping up so quickly and with such frequency, that I knew that the Universe and God were sending me giant messages and I would be a complete and total idiot to ignore even one of these signs.

Starting with no return text the night before my trip, no return text on my layover in Vegas and no sign of Chris at the airport.

But then, a text - of course - "Grab your bag and meet me at the curb."

Now if that isn't being a total gentleman, I don't know what is.

Oh, but wait, we're going to the Ritz - after all - in time to see the sunset and have lots of cocktails and go to an expensive restaurant so really, do the little things matter all that much?

Why yes, they do.

My first revelation of the trip was that I'd rather be greeted when I emerge from the gate area and taken to the Marriott, or even the Hilton - than to be ignored for a day prior to the trip and then have to drag my bag to the curb and look feverishly for my weekend date and be whisked off to the Ritz.

Here's another thing. I think it's weird for PhDs to make reservations at restaurants and hotels as Dr So and So. Medical doctors, I can see, but PhDs? I don't get it.

Case in point. Chris ordered room service four times. In one evening. For eight cocktails. And two shrimp cocktails. Every time, it was the same thing: "What else can we get for you, Dr and Mrs Cale?" He thought that was great; I thought it was completely absurd.

I got sick on Friday. I don't know why. Chris went to work and I think that the travel and my strong dose of anti-anxiety meds that I administered on Thursday might have turned my stomach a bit. I was on the hotel veranda - having eggs as "Mrs Cale" - when my stomach completely heaved and I had to dash for the restroom and totally toss my cookies (which were eggs). Then, I was fine.

Not knowing what else to do, I took the shuttle to the Ritz Pool Club, which is across town and only accessible via shuttle. Chris was to meet me there. My cell phone battery was dying, I forgot my book and all I had was sunscreen and a hat. So I sat with my thoughts for about seven hours and wondered why the sweet guy I met in June was - by all accounts - a complete slimeball?

A slimeball who didn't show up to get me from the pool club. He was "tied up" at work, but I later found out that "work" ended at 3pm and then began again at about 3:15pm at the hotel bar. I finally got a shuttle.

Through a series of "snoopy" events that I thought were absolutely justified, I found out that Chris had planned a date with another girl after he dropped me at the airport on Sunday. I really wasn't surprised; we had "the talk" on the way to St Augustine and he told me - with a lot of conviction - that he could not do a monogamous long distance relationship. With me. This wasn't exactly the impression I've been under for the last three months; I thought we were planning to see each other when we could and potentially developing a long distance relationship if things were proceeding in that direction. I guess I was wrong.

But that's OK, because we still had St Augustine, the concert and more time as "Dr and Mrs Cale" at the beautiful B & B that he chose. I was really excited for the concert; I was pretty much done with being Mrs Cale.

Apparently, Chris was not done with that whole charade though and he went on and on to talk about how he can't wait to visit Sacramento and see my real life. The he got smashingly drunk and told the cab driver that I was going to move to San Francisco with him when he got a teaching position at Stanford or Berkeley.

Oh. My. God.

Smashingly drunk for him = a late night for me on the B & B porch, texting and talking to my friends. (Read: the pressure was definitely OFF.)

At 6am, he woke up and dashed to the bathroom. He emerged looking panicked. "I need a plunger!" Despite my sleepiness, I dissolved into laughter and he looked completely mortified. As he ran to find the innkeeper in the adjoining building, I called across the courtyard, "Can you grab a cup of coffee for me when you get the plunger? With a lot of cream?"

Dr. Cale at his finest. You had to be there.

The coup de gras event happened a mere five minutes from the airport. Chris had his GPS on his phone, which was wedged into his steering wheel. I glanced at it, in time to see the GPS image go away and as an incoming text alert sounded.

He clicked on the text.

It was from the girl he was meeting.

There was verbiage about "boobs falling out" and "can't wait to see you."

Mere minutes later, we arrived at the airport. "Bye, babe," he said with a hug and a kiss that was meant to be longer. I pulled away and I walked through the glass doors and I never looked back.

Then I stewed all the way to Phoenix.

I sent a simple note from Phoenix: "I saw the text come in from the girl you were going to meet. I saw what it said. I'm disappointed in you."



It all crystallized in Phoenix as I waited on my late flight. Any guy who was remotely interested in keeping this thing going would have been right on the phone. Making up excuses, lies or apologizing profusely. None of that happened.

I did get a text a day and a half later that said, "That was from my friend. Her boob popped out at the beach."

My only thought is that I think I am worthy of someone who doesn't check their text messages in the last five minutes of our time together. And also, I'm absolutely certain that the whole thing borders on trashy and slimy and generally, gross.

I'm not sad. I'm relieved.

There is the small matter of the upcoming San Francisco trip but I know that I am incredibly justified in telling Chris to find his own fun that weekend.

This girl is staying put.

I still wonder what I saw on June 21st when our paths first crossed. I guess you can see anything you like if you look hard enough.

Monday, September 6, 2010


I've been abandoned and betrayed by who and what really matters and what I've got left is food. Here is where the link between food and God exists. In that isolated place, it is a short step to the conclusion that God - where goodness and healing and love exist - abandoned us, betrayed us.

This passage, from Geneen Roth's book, really struck a chord with me.

I often wonder why I seek God in so many places - in church, in nature, in my child's eyes, in yoga, in prayer - only to find that He's not really there. At least, not for me.

In truth, I've struggled with this notion of an elusive God for quite some time. I even stopped going to church for a while because I was angry with God's passiveness.

The most critical time of abandonment - by God - came when, in the midst of my separation, I fell down onto my knees and begged for Him to soften my ex's heart and to take me back, lovingly and unconditionally. It didn't happen. And when it did, it wasn't loving and there were tons of conditions.

I continue to look for God in dark corners and during the dark nights, I eat because I can't feel Him; I can't sense His presence. I feel very, very alone.

God is goodness and healing and love. I know that. I've felt it at many different times in my life and for many different reasons.

It's just that I lose sight so easily of my own faith and I doubt my worthiness of having goodness and healing and love all the time.

And I slip into the space of abandonment and betrayal.

Where it all goes downhill.




Faith that it can all be mine. Not just during the daytime hours but any time I like.

Sunday, September 5, 2010


I originally created this blog to acknowledge and work through the issues I've had with emotional eating over the last twenty-something years. Somewhere on the path, I lost touch with the purpose of this particular blog and began using it to vent about all the "stuff" in my life.

And somewhere on the path, my struggles with food re-surfaced, significantly, and began to overflow into other areas of my life.

One of my favorite authors on the subject of emotional eating is Geneen Roth. She's written several books, all of which I've read, and I went to see her speak back in 2001, when I first moved to Sacramento.

Recently, she published a new book, entitled, "Women, Food and God."

The book made a media splash. A big one. Oprah had Geneen on her show and also featured her in O Magazine. Big authors, many of my favorites - Ann Lamott, Annie Dillard and Christiane Northrup - spoke out on the significance of addressing spirituality and food together.

I'll spare you the details but I needed to get my hands on this book last month. I should have bought it much earlier. A downward spiral that only accelerates with the passing days is not a good place to be in. Thankfully, Target had lots of copies and I had some time each night to read.

There's so much to this 198 page book. I read it and I re-read it. Now, I'm going through with my highlighter. Eventually, I should probably get my journal out.

Right off the bat - on page 2 - Geneen drives it home. Here is what she writes:

Our relationship to food is an exact microcosm of our relationship to life itself. I believe that we are walking, talking expressions of our deepest convictions; everything we believe about love, fear, transformation and God is revealed in how, when and what we eat. When we inhale Reese's peanut butter cups when we are not hungry, we are acting out an entire world of hopelessness, of faith or doubt of love or fear. If we are interested in finding out what we actually believe - not what we think, not what we say, but what our souls are convinced is the bottom-line truth about life and afterlife - we need to go no further than the food on our plates. God is not just in the details; God is also in the muffins, the fried sweet potatoes, and the tomato vegetable soup. God - however we define him or her - is on our plates.

This passage made me cry. It made me realize how my eating directly affects my spirituality and ultimately, my connection to God. It made me see that every time I eat when the last thing I need is food, I am expressing hopelessness and loss of faith. I am doubting love; and I am in constant fear. And when I really stepped back and looked hard at those areas, I could acknowledge that yes, indeed, these are incredibly painful topics and that yes, indeed, I need better coping strategies.

So I'm going through the book for a third time. And using this blog as it was intended. At least for now.

More to come.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010


My favorite band is touring this fall.

The only guy I've had even a remotely great connection with since my ex (that's four years, in case you're wondering) is offering to fly me back east and take me to see my beloved OAR.

Press "Replay."


St. Augustine, this time.

The timing is great and it's horrible.

I'm excited and I'm terrified.

I can't commit and I can't see myself not going.

I've always wanted to see OAR with someone who loves their music as much as I do and I've never wanted to be this vulnerable.

I know and I don't know.

I have objectivity and I have no sense, whatsoever.

I want to run into this opportunity like I did the last time; and I want to run away.

I got quiet yesterday; so quiet. I prayed, meditated - told God to please help me to surrender this situation; take this man who I'm so captivated with and let him float away in a bubble or just vanish to his own corner of the world - and I waited, and I listened, with every sense of my being.

And I played 37 tracks of OAR.

And I cried.

And I wondered why I couldn't just still be married.

As I acknowledged this enormous responsibility of always making good choices for myself; because good choices for me, are great choices for Ben. Like dominoes - I fall and he falls. I stand strong and he stands stronger.

And everyone wonders why a long weekend in Florida with my favorite band is such a gut-wrenching decision. The consequences, always the consequences. No one understands consequences like a parent and no one deals with stark contrasts of consequences like a single parent.

And I didn't have any more direction; no more of a sense of what to do.

And he waits for my answer.

As I wait on God.

And a strong hand to guide me or at least, a gentle nudge.

A good friend of mine sent an article sometime ago about the deteriorating moral compass of our nation. The author had an incredible point: too many people listen to their heart, rather than their head.

The heart lies. The heart cheats. The heart strays. The heart, unlike the head, is untrained, it lacks intelligence, it falters and blames.

"The head, " I keep telling myself. "Your head will not steer you wrong, it will not leave you, it will provide the right answers to the hard questions.

Sometimes my head hurts from all the decisions. And I want to turn to other instincts.

But I don't trust my heart.

Friday, August 27, 2010


I've decided that I have my own Mr. Big. He's Chris from Florida and I don't know what to do with him.

Chris and Mr. Big share a lot of the same characteristics: they're funny, charming, smart, great-looking. They are also both a bit squirelly. I don't know how Carrie's fate turns out with the second SATC, but I wasn't so convinced the first time around that Mr. Big, or "John" as we find out in the end, was really going to deliver in the long run.

Kinda sounds familiar.

After my emotional tryst in Florida, I came home with too many tears and a raw sense of being way too vulnerable. Can you really ever be too vulnerable? You can if you're me and I certainly was.

I didn't know what to do with Chris so I composed a letter in my head, which eventually became a draft in my Inbox, and the was finally sent as a lengthy message at 4am on a morning when I knew that it was perfectly composed in a way that closed the door, sealed the deal, cleared the space and would allow me to move on. I held my breath, and pressed "Send." Then, I exhaled.

At 5am, I felt my shoulders start to relax a little.

At 6am, like a bird perched on a ledge, I spread my wings and I flew. Away from the situation, away, away, away. I walked away from East Coast time and any expectation of getting a response. I took a long, hot shower and breathed into the space that seemed to be wide open; the space of peace and surrender.

This lasted for about an hour. And then I began to obsessively look for my message indicator light to blink on my phone. I looked for the light, the blink, for two days.

Then I got my response.

What I honestly wanted Chris to say was: "I understand, good luck, it was great in Florida, you're a good person, blah-blah-blah."

What he actually wrote was: "I like you so much. You're such a good person. We're so compatible. I'll be in SF next summer for good. I want to see more of you. I want to see you soon. Thank you for being so honest and candid. I won't play games with you."


No, no, no.

It wasn't supposed to go like that. He was supposed to be scared off by all my expectations, by everything that I want. He was supposed to freak out by my reference to OAR's "Hey Girl" song. He was supposed to bow out.

So I sat for a few days and meditated. Well, actually, I didn't really meditate but I ruminated and that's a lot like meditation, yet far less relaxing.

Then, two days ago, a"Chris" text at 4am:

"I just bought a ticket to CA!"

Me: "When?"

C: "Halloween weekend."

Me: "What are your plans?" (I'm thinking that he should have contacted me prior since he knows that I do not vacation when on "Ben time" unless absolutely necessary and even then, I keep it to a minimum of one or two days away.)

C: "No plans! Just coming out West. Flying into SF."

Me: Silence.

More silence.

C: "I want to see YOU!"

At that point, I wrote back and laid it out in the briefest of texts:

"I have Ben. You need to tell me when you want to see me and I'll see if I can swap days."

C: Silence.

He must have gotten the point because he called me that night - at midnight his time - and talked about how excited he was to come out and see me. And then, the clincher:

"I want to meet Ben."

I swear to God, I thought the phone had cut out, the reception had gotten bad, that my hearing was finally compromised from all that loud MP3 use.

"You want to do WHAT?"

"Meet Ben."

"My son, Ben? Benjamin?"

He started to find humor in my reaction: "Yes, Ben! I want to meet him, why are you so shocked?"

"Because I don't introduce Ben to men that I date."

OK, that last sentence wasn't exactly what I said but it's what I was thinking because I momentarily lost all my brain cells and what I actually said was something like this:

"Ummmmm. Gosh. That's, ummmmmm, really nice. Really. Sweet, ummmm, yeah. Right. Well, anyway, it's a holiday weekend and Halloween is kind of a big one for kids, at least for mine, you know he loves trick or treating and getting all the candy that he can and I let him have all he wants and it's pretty much a given that he'll have a big stomachache and then I pick out all the junk that I don't want him to have, while he's sleeping of course, and I get all the dark chocolate out; oh, and the Twix too, sometimes Kit-Kat, although I'm really much more about the Hershey kisses these days and gosh, I wonder what he'll be this year; he really hasn't indicated what might be interesting, in terms of a costume, and anyway, I hide the candy that I pull out of his bucket and it's funny, he never seems to notice that there's less in the morning, then as the days go by, I start to throw out more and more, and wow, gosh, you want to meet him, well, gee, did I mention that we alternate holidays and it's his dad's turn this year for Halloween so I really don't think that the whole meet and greet is the best idea because it's a pretty short weekend and it's not like I can get Ben to San Francisco and I don't even know if I can get child care for one day and..."

Yeah, you get the point.

Talk about getting caught off guard.

I know a few things right now:

1. I may or may not see him in October. I'm not in the mood for my emotions to get all fucked up.

2. There is also no way in fuck that he's meeting Ben.

3. I don't know what this guy has over me, but whatever it is, it's not strong enough for me to do any of the following:
a.) cancel my eharmony membership
b.) stop going out on lunch and coffee dates with interesting guys
c.) hold out hope for one single minute that he might actually re-locate here

So, I feel a little better about the framework and about my own expectations, which are, basically, zero.

The thing with Chris is that he could be so much more than Mr. Big. He really could. Whether he will be, remains to be seen.

Perhaps not be me.

And that's okay.

Sunday, August 22, 2010


How do you take a person, an experience, a feeling, a weekend's worth of memories and set it all free?

Apparently, Chris had no problem doing just that, yet I can't seem to follow suit.

So I decided to tie the proverbial bow on the situation and set it free, at least in my mind.

Florida was too good. The time was so easy. The laughs were frequent; the conversation unending. There was instantaneous chemistry; there was talk of deeper things. There was a kayak, vodka, a boat, sushi, hidden bars that offered gorgeous views, warm pools that were so shallow that you could lay on your belly, nose-to-nose, and kiss the other person. There were late nights at the gulf where the moon couldn't have shone any brighter. There was a dinner where we sat so close and ate so much. There was his hand, always around mine or encircling my waist. There was so much, yet so little.

And I can't do that "so little" part anymore. I'm too old for that. I'm too responsible for that. If I had known that Florida would have literally fucked me up for days, I wouldn't have gone.

Last week, I decided that it was time to get on. To stop ruminating, brooding, what-if-ing the whole damn thing. In my heart, I knew that if I could write an honest letter, that I could close the space, answer the lingering questions and push ahead with the clarity and focus I need to get my son into First grade this week and to start soccer and to volunteer in the classroom and to start up our new fall schedule with clear energy and emotional stamina.

I wrote the letter at 4am on Friday. I just go up and did it. What better time to get something off your chest and out of your heart when the airplane awaits for the next adventure? When the house is quiet, when my mind is quiet, when my heart is oh so ready to talk and talk.

And it did. I think the letter to Chris was potentially the most candid letter I've ever written to any male (other than Kevin). I poured out the contents of my heart and I held firm in my stance of not wanting to be "the girl who flies off for fun weekends here and there." I gave him the option to reply. Or not. I promised him no judgment, no hurt feelings.

Not surprisingly, there has been zero reply. Kathie - my best friend who came with me to Malibu this weekend - joked that he "had to send it to his Landmark people for review and input." I kind of wonder if I completely brought too much truth and reality into his "Ritzy" world and maybe, yes, he is shoring up his Landmark folks for a good "Landmarky" reply.

The thing is, I feel a lot better. Almost like I can say, "thank you for the beautiful experience, now let me throw it back at the universe, at God, maybe into the past; some place where I don't have to see it, to feel it, to remember it."

I so desperately needed some closure. A letter may not close the chapter for good but it's a damn good start. Hitting "Send" was time enough to get my shoulders to drop two inches, my eyes to close for the briefest of seconds in relief and my heart to soften, just a bit.

There are a lot of other things that I need to focus on. Chris simply doesn't deserve all that space. And energy. And time.

Closure. It's a good thing.

Thursday, August 5, 2010


There should be a SPF for love.

Being the SPF Nazi that I am, I slathered myself in 100+ Coppertone while in Florida. Didn't even go for the organic stuff. I wanted full protection.

And damn it, I still got burned.

Granted, I have a golden tan that is lovely - far prettier than the brown skin I see here in Sacramento all summer - but I also have one scorched heart.

The thing of it is, there's no reason to have a burned heart. I knew the complications going in. I knew the risks. I knew of the possible outcomes. I took the chance.


And it's not his fault, it's really not.

He wants what I want and I do believe that he will get there.

But he also has a mistress. I met her a few times while we were there and I didn't much care for her. Had I known she would be around on the trip, I would have known more about my seemingly wonderful guy's personality.

Yes, his mistress is with him a lot. She announces herself on his ever present Blackberry. She pushes herself into our conversations and makes it known that she needs him in other conversations. She is controversial. She is loved by many, feared by some, hated by others.

Her name is Landmark.

My guy didn't tell me that he's a "big gun" leader for Landmark. Which explains how outgoing he is, how confident he is, how communicative he is, how present he proclaims to be.

Except that he wasn't all that present when things went downhill small bar we were in and he proceeded to pass out in the bathroom. On the toilet. Then the bartender carried him to a bench where he slept for two hours while I smoked cigarettes (that's our secret, please) and drank beer.

I wonder what Miss Landmark would have said about THAT.

To be fair, I don't mind Landmark. I briefly considered enrolling in a course at one time. I know a lot of people who have thrived with Landmark. I know it also to be a bit of a cult; a place that "feeds" information, validates like crazy and allows its followers to hide behind its well-polished fascade.

I'm picking on Landmark because "she's" an easy scapegoat. I believe that if Chris pulled back from Landmark and truly pursued the things that he wants:

1. Move to the Bay Area
2. Find principal position
3. Marry
4. Have a child
5. Play music

...that he may have an actual shot at one or all of the above.

But until he cuts the Landmark umbilical cord that is feeding him, I don't think that there's much of a shot.

Chris captivates me with his brains. I love how he thinks. I'm amazed by his schooling. His ideas are groundbreaking.

Chris makes me feel amazingly sexy in a school-boy way. He leads me by the hand, he kisses me so gently, he tells me I'm pretty.

Chris takes care of details. He gets me another glass of wine, encourages me to eat the last prawn, makes sure I'm comfortable and happy.

Chris dials it down. We sit by the pool and he digs into my US and OK magazine stash. He doesn't rush. He's content to rest his hand on my knee and stay a long, long while.

Chris tells me stories of his family; of his traditional parents who are Methodists, married forever; of his brothers, of his wonderful nephews and two nieces who are soon to be born. The pride in his face - when he speaks of his family - makes me want to know them.

Chris and music are mesmerizing together. His band's "Final Approach" becomes our tag line for the countdown of our days together.

Chris confuses me. He wants me to stay. He wants to me go. He asks fact-finding questions but leaves the biggest one out: "Will we see one another again?"

Chris goes to work on Monday. I should be long gone. But I'm not. I'm in his old Miata, in his town, finding my place on the shore of the Gulf. Warm salty tears mix with warm Gulf-y waves. What does he want? Why am I here? The answers scare me.

Chris takes me to Tampa late Monday night, while simultaneously facilitating a Landmark call. He wants one more dinner with me. The call is put on hold and resumes when the entrees are served. I wait. I get up, make my way to the restroom. My flip flop breaks. My expectations break, too.

The call is completed. Chris chastises himself for not being more present. He takes me to my airport hotel. He asks to stay; he's tired and it's a long drive home. Of course I agree.

At 5am, I rise and dress. He helps me with my bags and to the shuttle. I don't remember how we say goodbye.

The tears start in the shuttle.

They continue into the Tampa airport.

I ease into my aisle seat and the flight attendant's gaze meets mine. She approaches. "Are you OK, honey?"

I am OK, yes, that I am. But...

I'm not a playmate. I'm a mom.

I'm not a date to look forward to in six months. I'm living now.

I'm not certain that the real Janeen went to Florida. That girl took a rockin' body, small bikinis, teeny dresses, gold flip-flops, big eyelashes, sparkly lip gloss and a huge tolerance for wine and vodka.

Maybe we were both playing the parts of two very, very different people.

I get off the plane in Houston, find my gate, find a Starbucks, dig for Ativan. Nerves calm. Momentarily. Then the flight is called and the tears start again as we are lining up to board.

Once again, I find my seat, bury my head this time and turn on my MP3 player. The songs that I loaded for the trip are haunting: OAR's "That Girl" and Lili Haydyn's, "Saddest Sunset." And then "Final Approach" breaks in just as we begin to take-off.

Finally, the Ativan settles me and song by song is played in a surreal and dreamy haze.

In Sacramento, only 11am and the day is beautiful, my mother pulls up. I push my suitcase in her trunk and then slide into the passenger side of her car. It is then that I cry the hardest. I don't believe that she knows what to do. How could she? She's never been in this position before

I just want to be comfortable. To call the trip what it was and leave it there. For good.

But, I can't seem to get my bearings and I need to get them damn quick because we are leaving for LegoLand in one day. Meanwhile, Chris is on the coast- in a rented house - with 70 of his closest family and friends, celebrating his latest degree and his upcoming birthday.

Where does the truth lie? Is it in the Gulf, where I found so much peace and where I left so many tears?

Maybe there is no truth at all. Maybe it's just my latest lesson. Maybe it's my "Final Approach" to something really, really big. Maybe the game of love takes a wild detour when there is so little information, so much distance and so much glamour when it's finally right there to look at. Maybe I just don't want any of that at all.

Monday, July 5, 2010


In 23 days, I'm jetting across the country to meet up with a man I randomly met in Sacramento last month.

Yes, it is pure craziness.

No, I do not know what the hell I am doing.

Yes, I am freaking out.

No, I don't know about the long-term potential.

Yes, I am terribly excited.

So, the scoop. Here it is:

Chris and I met four weeks ago on a Friday night, downtown. I was with a girlfriend; he was with a couple (a guy and a girl).

I didn't plan on going to the pub that he was in with his friends. My friend and I were headed to the Mix to dance. We only ended up in the pub to kill time.

I didn't plan to sit across from him. I wanted to stay at the bar. My friend pulled me to where Chris and his friends were because she wanted to sit, rather than stand.

I didn't plan on locking eyes with Chris. I didn't plan on catching him looking at me, and stealing glances at him.

I didn't plan for my girlfriend to whip out her camera, hand it to him and say, "Please, will you take our picture?"

I didn't plan for him to start talking with us and for his friends to jump in.

I didn't plan for his friends to go back to their hotel room and for Chris to join us at the Mix.

I didn't plan on sitting with him for hours and talking about everything.

And I especially didn't plan to become totally captivated with a great guy who lives in 'effing Florida!

Chris is 42. He's a high school principal in Sarasota. He grew up in the Bay Area. He received his first degree at Sac State, then went on to just finish his PhD this week. He plays in a popular Florida indie rock band. He's divorced. He laughs when he talks and he is warm and engaging. He exudes kindness. He loves his family. He's solid.

I think.

I spent several fleeting hours with him but I knew I wanted more.

Apparently, he did too, because the next day his text said: "You are amazing. Can I see you again?"

Problem was, he was headed out of town to a memorial service and then would be flying back to Florida immediately.

We've kept in touch over the past month, mainly via text and email. He defends his dissertation on Wednesday. His family is flying in to celebrate. His band is playing a big gig. He is busy.

He called me last week, though, and we talked non-stop. At the end of the conversation, he asked if we could get together this summer. My only time without Ben is at the end of July, right in the middle of the time when he has a commitment with the high school. He offered to come here, but for once, I have the more flexible schedule.

So, I am going there. He made the arrangements this weekend. Four nights at the Ritz Carlton in Sarasota.

I googled the Rtiz.


He has to work part of the time so I'll have to entertain myself at the beach/pool club.


He emailed me tonight to find out what I like to eat, what I like to drink, what music I like.

He said he would take care of everything, all the details, so that I could have fun and relax.

I am reminding myself to exhale.

I am also under no grand illusion that this could have a story book ending. Knowing me, the ending will be something like a long, tearful plane ride home. With a layover in Denver, where I cry my eyes out in the bathroom.

Or as my best friend said, "You'll start crying two days in when you realize how terrific this guy is and how logistically impossible it all is."

Of course she's right.

But I have to go.

I have to.

I never know what the right answers are, in terms of dating. And as far-fetched as this trip is, in some ways, it's comforting.

I have a place to stay, in his hometown. He has work to do, so I don't have to be on 'high alert' the whole time. The hotel and the beach are totally conducive to distraction-free, 'getting to know you' kind of activities. We can swim and have fruity cocktails. He can show me Sarasota. I can bring my computer, a stack of books and my MP3 player.

So, it's the big countdown.

I'm trying to use this time to prepare emotionally for any outcome. It's the only way that I can go in with a clear heart. And no expectations.

Expect to maybe have even more fun with the sweet guy who loves what he does and who has a soft way about him; a way that drew me in from the moment I sat down on the bar stool.

It's a long way to Florida. It's a long way to go meet someone I've known for all of a few hours. It's a long shot.

I know.

Friday, June 25, 2010


I'm all about intentions at this point in my life. I have a lot of them.

The thing about intentions is that you can't let them swirl about. A good intention should have a place, a home, some careful consideration. Maybe some nurturing, too.

Lately, I'm finding that I'm looking at my intentions ever so carefully. And when I put them "out there" - as it's so popular to say - I'm scrutinizing what comes back to me.

It's been a little weird. I can't possibly ignore this: I'm bombarded in one area.

There's a trip to New York - all expenses paid - in an amazing, 3 bedroom TriBeca loft.

There's an adorable guy in Southern California. All I know is that his name is Ray and he's probably going to be my Facebook friend soon. No, he's not an online hook-up.

There's a Midwest rendezvous with someone I hardly know, but he's someone I'd very much like to know better.



I spent the day mulling over these possibilities in my head. And meanwhile:

Text notification beeped: "Please come to NY! I'll pay for you to fly home early. Please just say you'll come!"

My client arrived: "Look at these pictures! He's the nicest guy ever! And he wants to meet you."

I sent an email: "Rendezvous? Really? Is this a good idea?"

So while the details of all the above take flight in their ever-constant dance of "yes, no, maybe, i-don't-know," I've found it best to leave that situation alone (and it is only a situation right now; absolutely no intent has been formed) and move on to something I can really wrap my heart around.


It's been on my brain for way too long. This writing life that I have is superb, but it needs to be more. There's a voice, there's a beckoning: "Janeen, wake up and write." And I can't ignore it any longer.

So I chased down the intention this week. I grabbed it by its unruly neck and I pulled it in. I held it close and I asked it for clarity. I asked it for feedback. I asked if for manifestation.

And it appeared.


I put out some calls, sent off an email. Asked God, the Universe, the Intention Master to speak. Guide me. Direct me. Show me.

Tonight, in my Inbox, there it was. A reply email from the owner of a freelance journalism firm.

He asked: "Fitness, travel, food, wellness?"


He went on: "Long features or short?"


We are going to talk next week.

I'm learning how to play the game of Intentions. I'm learning more every day. I'm starting to think that I might even play so well that I may begin to win. Somehow, keeping that mindset helps me to believe that as exciting as NYC might be, as nice as a new Facebook friend could be, or as amazing as a Midwest meet-up would be, none may even occur.

It's all about intention, right? And maybe, just maybe, none of those are intended for me.

But the phone interview next week? That's all mine!

Saturday, June 19, 2010


I just got home. Saturday night, 11:00om. I need to sleep. My thyroid meds have me all hopped up, at all the wrong hours. But I'm not at peace; not even in the least bit and the unsettled emotions that are with me now are huge; bigger than normal, larger than life.

Against my better judgment, I went to my client's "Divorce Party" tonight. After several hours of revelry, I slipped out at 10:15pm and cried all the way back to my house.

When did I turn the corner and become an adult? A complicated, layered adult with much regard for consequences?

I think it may have happened right in the middle of that tiny, cramped Midtown apartment.

About 25 people gathered tonight to toast and celebrate my client's boyfriend. He is divorced. Officially. Per the State of California, Family Law Court.

Hear, hear. Clink, clink.

I am so happy for you?

I didn't know that such a thing existed: a divorce party. I didn't know that friends would gather and say things like, "I'm gonna get married and divorced just so I can have a party like this!" I didn't know that party go-ers would sneak downstairs and decorate the newly divorcee's car just as they would a newlywed's car. Can you picture it? "Just divorced!"

I didn't go downstairs to see it so I can't write about the details of the car. I was finding my way toward the exit, at that point.

Did I mention that there is a 5-year-old child involved?

Yeah, that brings it a whole lot closer to home. Doesn't it?

Divorce isn't happy; it's tragic. I don't care what the circumstances are, who is at fault. It' devastating. It's not a reason to celebrate.

Children of divorce KNOW that something is different about their situation. They start school. They see nuclear, traditional families. They ask questions. You can't celebrate their uncertainties, their insecurities, their wishes for things to be different.

Friends and family members suffer in divorces. Friendships are severed, family traditions are discarded, in-laws who were once treasured as "real" moms, sisters, brothers, dads are cut out. You can't celebrate the sadness of losing important people.

I could say so much more right now, but I can't.

I can't because I stood in a room full of 30-somethings and I raised a glass of nice champagne after the divorcee made his speech. I forced a wide smile. I clinked the glasses of those around me. I made the appearance that I was happy for my friend, who now joins the horrific divorce statistic.

And then I quietly went to the kitchen, poured my drink out, found my keys, made up excuses, said my goodbyes, walked the long blocks to my car and promptly fell apart.

When the State of California stamped my divorce decree, I cried for days. I cried for Ben, I cried for Kevin, I cried for my parents, I cried for myself.

I still cry.

Before God, I took a vow to love Kevin and to be with him "until death do us part." Kevin couldn't do that part, but I could. I fought for it. I believed in it. I prayed for it.

But it wasn't enough.

Gathering my friends together, pouring champagne and celebrating the demise of my marriage was something I could never fathom.


How could I explain such an event to Ben someday? Or to my mother, now?

I will always grieve the loss of my marriage, even if I am lucky enough to be happily married again one day. People were hurt, relationships were destroyed, trust was sabotaged. I don't know how you raise a glass and make those things go away. I don't think those things can ever go away. There is forgiveness, yes. But it is so very hard to forget.

Especially when you have the sweet face of a child looking up at you for answers.

When I came in the door earlier, I put down my keys, stripped off my clothes and went to the shower as quickly as I could. I scrubbed off all the physical remnants of the party: spilled drinks, cigarette smoke, marijuana. And I tried to get the emotional yuck off too: the tasteless comments, the nasty remarks about an ex I never knew, the dismay that anyone could ever be so fucking happy about the demise of a marriage.

For someone who sincerely wants to be married again, I don't think that this was a good place to be on a Saturday night. Or any other night, for that matter.

But I learned so much in such a short time.

I am reminded that marriage is sacred. I am committed to honoring the act of marriage and not ever cheapening it with lewd remarks and inappropriate decisions. I am more of a believer in marriage than I ever was before. I have more faith in good marriages, and more hope for those marriages that need it.

I am in celebration of marriage.

And I am really, really sad for the room of people tonight who just don't get it.

Monday, June 14, 2010


I am feeling immensely grateful for better physical health. There, I said it. Now I can write about the state of my heart without feeling like I'm being ungrateful for the great improvements that I've made physically.

This weekend, I "graduated" my son from Kindergarten. I developed a major crush on a guy; let's call it unrequited love for now. I had a fall-out with a female friend. I went to a party at my ex-husband's house and despite his girlfriend being in attendance, was accosted by several friends and ex in-laws who felt the overwhelming need to convince me that we (the ex and I) should get back together. I cut my carb intake to just a couple lettuce leaves, a few tomatoes, some avocado and straight Vodka. I said goodbye to Ben for a week.

Can you say "train wreck?"

I held it back until yesterday - Sunday - afternoon, then the dam of emotions broke and the river of tears hasn't stopped.

It started with Ben's little footsteps on the wood floors on Friday morning. Tears before breakfast. Yay. Graduation itself wasn't so bad, but he was getting sick and Kevin wasn't being attentive and I wanted to just wrap Ben up in all my motherly compassion and take care of him.

But I couldn't because it was Kevin's damn day.

Going out on Friday night seemed to be the perfect solution especially since I haven't been out in so long. But it wasn't because I found a guy, in a bar, or rather, he found me. Actually, we just found each other. I liked him. A lot. I got to know him and then he went home. To fucking Florida. Just my luck.

The girlfriend and I had a difference in opinion over said guy. Why can't female friends just be supportive? Why is male attention a bad thing when you're a single mom? It's not like Ben was sitting on the bar stool next to us. And he bought her drinks. I don't understand.

My ex's party was a mess. From my perspective, at least. Kevin so wanted my mom and me there. We went, even though it was a party with his people: his girlfriend, her friends, my ex in-laws, etc. I got there and my mother-in-law (ex, that is) barrels into me, sloshed, and says, "I LOVE YOU SO MUCH! I MISS YOU SO MUCH! EVERYONE MISSES YOU! DON'T YOU STILL LOVE KEVIN???"

Hello to you too.

Same conversation occurs over and over among friends and family members. "We know he left you, Janeen, but he would do anything to get you back."

At one point, I had to say, "Lower your damn voice. His girlfriend is RIGHT THERE, for God's sake!"

Such a heavy heart that night. As if "getting back together" was so easy. AS. IF.

Then, a text from my bar friend: "Fly out for some Florida fun!"

What is wrong with men today??? Pick up the damn phone and invite me to your state properly. Not that I'd go, mind you, I'm not exactly looking for a Florida "hook-up."

Lastly, the diet. Adjusting to 20 net carbs a day is hard work. There are 20 carbs in an apple. A big apple!

I did my first kytone test this morning and results were right on. Which means my body is where it's supposed to be except that the major dip in serotonin is probably contributing to the waterworks event here.

And finally, because I forgot this little tidbit, I got invited to a Divorce Party. Yes, you read that correctly: A DIVORCE PARTY. So-and-so is splitting from so-and-so and the invitation read: "Let's fucking celebrate!!"

To which I can only say, "What-the-fuck-over?"

The saving grace was a phone call to my sister and the text that she sent after we hung up. I have to write this so that I can come back and read it and read it and read it and read it...

I'm so glad that you called me today and that you share your life with me in vulnerable ways. I will keep your secrets for you. You are dazzlingly beautiful inside and out. You are of infinite worth. I see you as a light that fills every space you are and lingers long after you are gone. I look forward to your visits like you're somebody famous I've won a lunch date with, and I don't want to live in a world without you. I love you, Jan and you'll always be my hero, no matter what.

After a weekend like this, I feel so very compartmentalized and even marginalized as this life that I live dips and soars and crashes and glides. But to have my sister on my side, to know that she holds the big net for when I tumble, to have the assurance that compassion will always win over judgment in her book is so priceless in my world of unknowns.

Thank you, Alisa. I love you too.

And the house is officially out of klee-nex.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


I think I've gone beyond the energy surge to "just straight up mania."

Welcome to life on thyroxine.

One day you're lower than low, the next, you're higher than a kite.

The club manager took me aside yesterday. "Are you ok?" she asked. I guess my barrage of chitchat and shaky hands were a dead giveaway to the fact that I was flying high.

That, and the fact that I can't sleep.

My doctor called late last night (BLESS HER A MILLION TIMES OVER!).

Turns out, I can't back off the medication until my lab work is completed. The doctor doesn't want to give up the progress we've made and said that a therapeutic dose can take awhile for the body to get used to.

Maybe now is a good time to take up marathon training.

The energy is great. But feeling like I'm going to have a heart attack? Not so much.

Nevertheless, I'm glad to be venturing back to my old self. I've definitely had glimpses of that life in the last couple of days and I like it. A lot.

And like every well traveled road, the journey back will inevitably involve a lot of twists, turns and detours. Would I have it any other way? I don't think so.

Monday, May 31, 2010


Let's change the date on the last post to read: 5/29/10.

Yep, that's the official day that I climbed out of the pituitary/thyroid/endocrine hole. And I didn't just climb, I pretty much leaped out of the hole, true to form of my "old self."

It started with 45 minutes of cardio on Saturday morning. Early Saturday morning. Continuing on to supervising a mini golf play date with Ben and his favorite girl from class. Then on to the back yard and a major planting project. I pretty much fell into bed on Saturday night, but not before I realized that I gone a whole day without my heating pad and without having dizzy spells.

Then Sunday put Saturday to shame. 90 minutes of exercise. An hour of house cleaning. A drive to my sister's. Another drive to the South Bay for a dinner date. A late dinner date.

I thought I'd be trashed by this morning. I had about four hours of sleep last night. But I had it in my mind that I needed to quantify how much better I was and there was only one way to do it: get my butt to the nearest yoga class.

My beloved yoga has taken such a backseat to this whole endocrine mess. "You can't do yoga until your blood pressure comes up." Every doctor has told me this.

I don't know where my blood pressure was this morning, but after a double dose of Peet's, I was feeling optimistic. And more than a little hyped up.

So I found a class near my sister's. A 90 minute class. 90 minutes turned into 120 and as luck would have it, it was an arm balance practice! While the rest of the class practiced hand stands, forearm balances and side crows, I let myself sink into child's pose.

It was great. Not the class, itself. Unremarkable, at best, from an instructional standpoint, but it was just what I needed to convince myself that I am officially on the road back.

Several people have asked me this weekend, "Is it the medication? Or the diet? Or the supplements?" I wish I knew. But I'm not questioning any of it.

A little Western medicine, a few Eastern tweaks and a whole lot of flax = the prescription to ending my 30s on a healthy and high note. Did I mention how grateful I am?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


Doctor appointment this morning. Blood pressure down. Weight up. Major frustration.


"Fourth of July," the doctor said. "Plan to put everything on hold until then."

How do you put parenting on hold? Clients certainly don't go on hold. Life - as it is in my world - does not just go "on hold."

So I booked a week long trip to Lego Land with Ben. In August.

And an appointment with a nutritionist. Tomorrow.

Little League and school both wrap up in the next month with all the requisite fanfare.

On hold? Not while I'm living this life.

Monday, May 10, 2010


When Ben was a baby, he used to say "awgock" for "all gone" or "all done." We still say it.

The MRI is awgok.

Sunday came with high anxiety in the house. I lashed out at my mother. Several times. I hauled Ben off to a friend's house because it was raining and I didn't know what else to do. I took my low octane Valium and waited. Nothing happened. My mom and Ben waited with me at the MRI center. The technician was running 30 minutes late. I asked the receptionist if I had time to get a drink. Ben, my mom and I ran down J Street, looking for an open restaurant. Nada. I ended up in AM/PM, with a six-pack of wine coolers, a large Slurpee cup and a long straw.

Two wine coolers later, I was calm enough to slide into the teeny tiny MRI space. I emerged thirty minutes later for a quick sip of wine cooler and a quick injection of iodine. Then back in for another thirty.

I quizzed the technician when she brought me out. I worked every possible angle. She gave away nothing, except for a huge envelope of slides - dozens of pictures of my brain.

There is a certain sense of peace and calm once every test has been completed. Now it's up to the specialists. My role is in this is awgock.

Saturday, May 8, 2010


Ben has a cute book that goes something like this:

Sunday, Funday
Monday, Runday

...and I can't remember the rest.

Anyway, around here this Sunday is being called "MRIday," even though it's Mother's Day.

I actually don't mind a bit. I celebrated Mother's Day with Ben in his classroom on Friday and I couldn't have asked for a sweeter experience. After several years of skipping Mother's Day activities in the classroom due to my busy work mornings, I decided that this was the year to go. After all, I justified, Mother's Day brunches in the classroom won't happen every school year. And I'm so glad that I went.

I'm relieved that the in depth look at my pituitary gland is finally happening, especially after taking more and more medication over the last couple of weeks, which clearly isn't making the symptoms any better.

My health insurance plan is a very pricey PPO. I cringe every month when I pay the premium and I cringe again when I deposit an ungodly amount of money into my Health Savings Account for the yearly deductible. Lately, though, I've been feeling pretty content with the decision I made a couple of years ago to spend a little extra on the comprehensive and self-directed plan that I have. My doctor said it best: "There are a lot of MRI machines in this town. Getting the approval to go into a machine is the biggest challenge." My nurse clients are still amazed that I'm not in an insurance queue, waiting even longer.

So, finally, Sunday - "MRIday" - will be here and I'll have the answers that I need to move forward and re-capture some semblance of life. Life as I used to know it.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


one hour until i meet with my endocrinologist. if i'm not nervous (and i truly don't feel like i am), then why have i been up all night? and who schedules patients at 6:45am? i guess i'm relieved that my doctor is a workaholic.

today has the potential for being a really sleepy day. i can already tell.

Saturday, April 24, 2010


There are things that you don't want to do in front of your 6-year-old child OR your 66-year-old mother. Things that might be embarrassing or inappropriate or anything that might be in the least bit frightening. Needless to say, after this morning's incident, both of my roommates - my young son and my mature mother - are both keenly aware that something is not quite right with me. And perhaps a bit scared, too.

I was in the kitchen, drinking coffee when it hit. "It" is a sharp pain, almost a spasm in my low abdominal area. "It" feels like childbirth. Times twenty. "It" strikes without warning. "It" takes my breathe away; makes me see stars. "It" is unlike anything I've ever felt before. "It" brings me to my knees. Today "It" brought me to the floor. With a blood-curdling scream.

Ben looked up from Tom and Jerrry. My mom rushed in from the front room.

I tried to speak - to say anything - that would articulate what "It" was doing to me. But there were no words.

There was one thing I knew to do and that was to push back into Child's Pose and breathe like I teach: sloooowwwwwlllllllyyyyyy.

"It" started to go away. I got up off the floor. I think that the impact of the event hit my mother harder than it hit Ben. He eventually went back to Tom and Jerry but she didn't go anywhere.

I explained to her - as best that I could - that T3 and T4 hormones are your "fire" or your "agni," as we call it in yoga. T3 and T4 get you out of bed in the morning, they tell your metabolism to start its daily burn, these are the hormones that prompt your body to digest each meal, each snack, each stolen piece of chocolate and to move fluids through, as well. This power of this dynamic duo cannot be under-estimated. I read that when low levels of T3 and T4 go untreated, that major feelings of apathy, depression and even psychosis start to emerge.

"It" is one of the really ugly parts of having no digestion to speak of. The littlest thing can set my system off and "It" comes out, showing his ugly, demonic self. I'm lucky that so far, each episode has occurred in my own home.

Lest you think that I am shedding pounds and pounds of weight with all this going on, let me say that I could go on a water only diet and still gain several pounds a week, at this point. I went through the disappointment and the being so-pissed-that-I-threw-a-few-things-at-my-bedroom-wall-while-trying-to-get-dressed-phase and now I'm much more at peace with it. I'm even pretty zen. I have a ton of clothes a la Crossroads and my friend, Michelle's Swap event, that I could care less about what's fitting and what isn't. Seems there are bigger things to worry about.

Like not letting "It" come around when Ben and my mom are here. No doubt, I've totally freaked my mom out but I think I've saved Ben. For the moment.

Stay the fuck away, "It." Or at least don't come back until Ben is in school and preferably when my mother is out shopping. That's all I ask.

Saturday, April 17, 2010


I am convinced that God is intent on priming me, in this year - the last year of my 30th decade - to be fully self-actualized for my 40s. Why else would there be so many damn challenges thrown my way in such a short amount of time?

I take such enormous pride in my health, I really do. Some people might call it a compulsion, I call it a passion. Simply put, being healthy is the biggest priority for me. Because if I'm not healthy, then how can I take care of my son? How can I make money to sustain our home and our basic needs? How can I be a caring daughter? A reliable friend? A loving sister? A consistent mentor? I can't do any of these; not without my health.

So it was very disappointing to watch - almost like an observer outside of my body - my entire sense of being go through a major shut down in the month of March. It was actually a slow descent; one that I didn't fully realize until I noticed that my clothes weren't fitting, that my legs appeared puffy and bloated, that I couldn't warm up even despite having a heavy down jacket on all the time, that my nose kept draining this funny clear fluid, that I wanted to lie on my bed for absurd amounts of time during daytime hours, that a stroll on the treadmill felt like a death march up Half Dome, that my life seemed to be slipping by in a hazy, hazy fog.

On March 1st, I started a daily preventative medicine for my migraines. By the end of March, I had convinced myself that the meds were to blame and I tossed the bottle. But I didn't feel any better. If it all possible, I felt worse.

I called up my doctor. "You need to do some blood work," I told her. "NOW." Then I took five days off. I figured that I needed a little rest; some downtime.

My doctor is so great; she called me at 8:30pm the night that I had done my labs. I was in the middle of TJ Maxx, looking for yoga pants, size Large, thankyouverymuch. Sigh.

"Well, dear, I think I see the problem but I don't know what to do so you need to see a specialist." The "problem" was my thyroid. Sort of. On paper, my thyroid looks great. Perfectly normal. The issue lies in the hormones that the thyroid produces: T3 and T4. Those levels were (are) not good. In fact, that lab flagged each because they were so low. "I can't treat you for low thyroid," she said, "because your thyroid is fine. But your levels aren't. And that concerns me."

It concerned me too. So much, in fact, that I pulled up the online database of endocrinologists in my network and started to make phone calls. Do you know how hard it is to see an endocrinologist without a referral? Extremely. Fortunately, as my doctor would later put it: "I had an angel on my shoulder that day."

Indeed I did, because not only did I get in to see one of the most reputable endocrinologists in town, he agreed to see me the very next morning at 7:30am.

Dr. C looked at my labs and spent an hour examining me. He spent very little time on my thyroid and more time on my head and vision. He asked a lot of questions about my headaches. He promised to tell me what he was thinking at the end of the exam. I tried not to freak out.

At the end, he told me that he believed that I have a pituitary tumor. I didn't freak out. He told me about the surgery. About the treatment. I still didn't freak out. We agreed that I would have the lab work completely re-done, that an ultrasound of the thyroid would rule out its role in this whole situation and that a MRI would show exactly what is happening in the pituitary gland.

Because something is, happening, that is. According to Dr. C, when the thyroid numbers are inconsistent like mine, then it is likely that the pituitary gland and the thyroid aren't communicating. They're not even on speaking terms. The body can't regulate digestion, temperature - but it can produce a whole of ambivalence and fatigue.

So I haven't freaked out but I have done a lot of reading. And I have been more than a little frustrated with my lack of energy, my fatigue, my clothes that are all too small. More than that, I have shed quite a few tears over the pervasive feeling of my body feeling as if it has checked out of the building. No amount of caffeine could motivate me this week. Even after taking a few days off.

I know that God is in my court and that the Universe is holding me up, even though I feel so deflated. I know this because I'm seeking the answers, I'm turning over every stone, and the resources are coming to me. Quickly. The call back from my initial doctor. The next day appointment with Dr. C. The ultrasound that is happening on Monday. Either the big dollars that I pay for my PPO plan are finally paying off, or the Big Guy above is carefully guiding me to the answers that I'm so desperately looking for.

Today I had lunch with my ex. "Do you think I have a tumor?" I asked him. As if on cue, he reached over and wiped my wet and draining nose. "You have the symptoms," he said. "I feel horrible," I told him. "You look great," he replied. Then he gave me two enormous containers of MiraLax, saying, "I know you need this." Indeed I do - I'm cutting through that stuff like it's candy.

I truly don't have any plans to freak out anytime soon. What I'd like is to feel a little bit better. I know I'm not going to get to the "feeling better" point by freaking out. If I've learned anything in my 39 years on Earth, it's that the more you seek, the more you will (likely) find. Clearly, I have a lot of discovery work to do before I turn 40. I'm not afraid.

Thursday, April 8, 2010


I have a friend whose friendship is like a beautiful spiritual gift. She's the reason I fell in love with yoga and her radiance as a yogi is awe-inspiring. I can never get enough of her...her teaching, her time, her wisdom, her light, her warmth, her energy.

What I adore most about my friend is that she challenges me to be a better person. She takes the simplest question or thought and turns it into a heart crushing inquiry that echoes into the deepest part of my soul. It's incredible, really it is. This gift that she has.

This latest idea that she imparted last night in her class is a keeper; a beautiful gem of honesty, raw truth and limitless potential:

"See what needs to go in order for you to really feel alive in your life. What can you metaphorically set on fire?"

Who doesn't want to feel more alive? I know I do.

My friend is a gift from God. My heart expands when I'm around her. She taught me how to yoga nine years ago. Now she teaches me how to reach into my spirit. I love her for it.

Sunday, April 4, 2010


March Madness. That's what it's going down as. The most maddening month of my adult life, thus far.

Glad it's over. Bring in April.

I should probably just call it "Medicated March" since that's what it essentially was. Thirty-one days of haze.

I have a new sense of respect and empathy for people who have to take medications that fuck with their whole lives, their whole sense of being, their role in civilization.

Last March, incidentally, I had a client who was going through the ringer with her emotions. Post-hysterectomy, she was an absolute mess. Her doctor had her on several drugs to resolve the fluctuating hormones. Her thyroid was whacked, her anxiety was high, yet she was so depressed that she walked into every session with me in complete tears. I didn't understand - I couldn't understand - I thought that much of her misery was psychological. Now I know better.

The meds took four days to clear my own system and I'm just now starting to feel like I'm a bit more connected, more aware, more motivated, more of a person who can handle life's responsibilities in a way that is focused and centered.

Thank you, God.

Now, on to the hard part. Tackling the nine pounds (as of this morning's weigh in) that showed up in March. Removing all migraine "trigger" foods (goodbye, afternoon caffeine and chocolate and evening wine). And, most importantly, reducing the stress that I carry in my head, neck and shoulders (hello, more massages and yoga!).

One of the reasons that I love Easter is because of the symbolism of the resurrection. Not that I'm entirely sure that it happened or at least not in a way that was so grandiose as told by the Bible - but to me, it's all in the message. We are resurrected every day. It's the essence of spring with new life and fresh starts. We can birth a new beginning any way we like; and at any time. Spring isn't my favorite season but it is a time that I always carefully contemplate what needs to be cultivated and re-birthed in my own life.

Last year, it was a relationship. One that was troubling me. I spent Easter Sunday with this person. In fact, we spent the entire weekend together. In honor of our time together, I planted flowers that Easter morning; and I planted the vegetable garden, too. I also planted the seeds for a relationship that could have lasted months beyond that weekend. But it didn't. I remember feeling, at the time, a sense of relief the week after Easter, when it became apparent that this person and I weren't meant to be together into the spring. My tomato plants died. So did my cucumber plants. But the flowers went crazy. The lesson was so simple, yet so beautiful: not everything we tend to will blossom into something new and full of life. Despite our best efforts (and a whole lot of fertilizer and manure!).

So here we go into April. 9 months until my birthday. Enough to literally birth a brand new life. March feels so far behind me now, yet it's only been three days. As I let go of all of the darkness of those thirty-one days, I'm inspired by the light that is beckoning me to move forward into Spring.

Resurrections are my own personal testament in sweet divinity. I love watching them, being a part of them and learning from them. As I dig through my own life and gently cultivate the areas that need to be loved, I wait in quiet anticipation of the flowers that will spring forth.

Happy Easter.

Friday, April 2, 2010


I'm having to make some decisions regarding my business. Difficult decision that are tearing at my heart, at my spirit and surprisingly, at my ego.

I started teaching yoga as a way to make money. I never thought I'd build a business around this; it was simply a way to make enough money to sustain my son and myself. But now it's become much more. The way I see it, I have two businesses: the business of delicately offering hand-on-hand wellness through my personal studio and the business of traveling around to local gyms to teach to larger groups.

The financial demands have become increasingly more significant as well. It has become all to apparent, recently, that if I want to have an independent life (separate from my live-in mother) and continue to be a homeowner, I have to do something different. It's time to let these jobs morph into a career.

Which is what I've been trying to do for months now. But the late nights are still there, the fatigued days, the added stress of running from this gym to that client to another gym and oh, right, I have to get Ben from school and somehow squeeze in homework and maybe some down time with him before running off to the next gym and client.

It's too much. I feel like I'm holding myself back from moving forward because I'm just simply moving around too much every day.

On a profitability level, this became extremely obvious when my dad and I laid out my W-2s. "Tell me again why you have so many of these," he said. So I did. And next to my own studio income, the earnings from teaching at the clubs seemed paltry. Because they were. And are.

The answer was as clear as day: let the group work go. Concentrate on the profitable side. Save energy for the clients who are paying for it. Save myself before I burn out so much that I can't come back.

Gut-wrenching, this decision has been. Yoga instructors, or any fitness instructors, for that matter, thrive on numbers. A class of 20 is rewarding, a class of 30 is the pinnacle of your yoga teaching career. At least in a city like Sacramento. See, we don't get much in the way of career feedback in this business. I know I'm doing well when people show up; when they keep coming.

So much of my ego is tied to this decision and if I tell my ego to shut the hell up - just for a second - then I can see so much more clearly. Which is what I'm trying to do. Until...

I realized one evening this week, as I reflected on my day, that I had taught yoga to 55 people that day. 55 people.

I made a deal with myself. I'm keeping my biggest class. My favorite class. The class that gathers together early, the same class where it's a huge chat-fest and I can hardly get everyone's attention to get going because of all the talking. The class where I get at least a couple of hugs. The place where I started: three years ago with just nine people. Now we're up to 25.

That feels like a good compromise for now. Maybe someday there will be an opportunity to bring yoga to people in a way that is profitable for me but for now, I'm re-tooling my entire studio business and that's where my energy needs to be going.

As I make yet another transition here, I'm feeling settled. Every decision I've made this year - this pivotal year of being on the cusp of a new decade - has felt spot-on. No regrets. No looking back. Just moving forward on a path that seems to be leading me right where I need to go.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


I'm going to be 40 this year. I'm going to be 40 in 40 weeks.

I keep talking about my plans for the end of the year (my birthday is December 27th) and how there will be "40 days of transformation." A lot of yoga. Reading. Meditating. Levitating. Time with friends. Time with family. More yoga.

But what I really want to do is get this whole business of transformation going right now. And it occurred to me yesterday, why can't I? I glanced at the calendar and counted out 40 weeks, which put my little finger just days of ahead of my 40th. It's perfect.

To be clear, I'm not looking for perfection. There are some areas in my life; some very dusty and dark corners that I want to poke into. With some gentle curiosity perhaps. Blow the dirt off, look carefully and find the gleam that I know was once there.

And yes, I could do this at any time in my life. But why not now? Doesn't it make sense to enter a new decade with a cleaner slate? A whiter canvas in which to take all my new-found colors and whirl them wildly and with complete certainty, at a surface that I know is ready for big and bold changes?

I definitely know that I don't want to be this person when I'm 40. The last five years have been my time to react, adapt, push back. I kind of think of my life since 35 as being in the spin cycle of the laundry. You know how a large sweater can twist everything up and cause the whole washer to basically turn inside out on itself? That's how I've felt much of the time.

Just because I'm turning 40 and I'm willing to do a little work in the soul department, I know I'm not entitled to a free ride into the next decade. I know what I have to do is very, very hard. I know that I've made decisions that I'm still feeling the aftereffects from. I know that my biggest challenge, going forward, will be to make decisions that create balance and harmony in my life and to avoid outcomes that make things so off-kilter that I can hardly stand to be in my own skin.

I know. Harsh. Difficult. Not at all appealing.

But so necessary right now. I feel it in my bones. I feel it in my heart. The time is so right; so right now.

Week 1 of 40. Here I am. 40...here I come!

Friday, March 19, 2010


Mr. Great is not real.

Oh, he's real in the sense that he's a guy with a lot of yucky history who likes to escape his day-to-day world with a nice girl who will indulge his plans for the very very very very short-term future ("Let's meet for dive bar drinks...in 30 minutes...at 11pm!") and ("Napa this weekend, perhaps?") only to toss out Napa for dinner in Sacramento at said girl's favorite restaurant.

But wait, that didn't happen either.

However, there still are the U2 tickets that he promised...

Yeah, right. Who am I kidding?

Bottom line is this is one guy who can't touch into reality for one single second. At least not from what I've seen. And here's how I know.

All week long, I've waited for Mr. Great to step his yogi self up to the plate and say something to the effect of, "Work's a killer. It's busy with the kids. I'm overwhelmed. I'm sorry to keep flaking on you. I'm sorry I haven't called you." Gosh, I would have even taken a measly, little, impersonal text."

Silence. Nothing. Nada. Zilch.

Meanwhile, my friend who introduced us sent me a message: "How's it going with Mr. Great??" Insert smiley faces. "I haven't heard from either of you..." More smiley faces.

Back to my story.

So all week I'm waiting on Mr. Great to throw me the smallest of bones and to let me know that he's interested and a letter appears in my inbox, yesterday, from a guy that I went on a date with earlier this year. I didn't think that we had any chemistry and I let the communication lapse. He called me on that. He also told me, the in the letter, that he was "real." He used the words "secure," "old fashioned," "values," "integrity." He definitely put himself out there in a way that was very, very real and very, very admirable.

It was a long message and I won't go into the detail but what occurred to me was: I've been waiting for this from Mr. Great. Even some semblance of this. I NEED REAL.

I love a good lesson and I got one this week. Mr. Great can have all the adversity in the world and believe me, he has his share, but it doesn't make him any more real and authentic and honest and forthright than anyone else.

As for my candid date who popped off on the email yesterday, I wrote a long thank-you to him today. I apologized for being less-than-real and for participating in communication that was "less than stellar" by his account.

Interestingly, my best friend and I have almost the same heart-to-heart conversation each day; our constant mantra being "keep it real." She pulls me in when I start to veer from reality; I give her glimpses of what escaping will be like some day for her. We are a wonderful balance that way. I'm grateful for that accountability. I definitely want to be someone who is real especially when it comes to relationships and this week's events were a good reminder of being real and being, for lack of a better word, a coward.

Sunday, March 14, 2010


How much slack do you give to a guy who keeps flaking? How much slack to you give to a guy who has a late wife, a blind daughter, a pre-teen daughter, a time-consuming job and a life that looks its turning inside out on itself each day?

I want to give Mr. Great the benefit of the doubt; I really, really do. But he's making it so damn hard.

He never showed up for yoga this week. Too tired from work. He checked in at the end of the week to see if we could get together on Saturday. I got ready on Saturday night, only to get a call at the VERY last minute. He carried on two conversations: one with me, one with his younger daughter. He'd been working all day, despite the fact that it was Saturday, and his daughter had just arrived at home, obviously very much in need of some attention from her dad. I told him to go give her that; that we could connect another time. Not a big deal.

Except that it is. A big deal. And I'm tired of waiting on him to throw me just the teeniest little bone.

His friend, our friend, the woman who introduced us, sent me a text this weekend: "He genuinely likes you..."

I don't feel liked right now. I don't know how much benefit of the doubt you should extend to someone - regardless of their circumstances - but I do know that when it starts to feel like you're the only one holding the space, maintaining the hope and generally keeping the interest alive, it's probably time to cut your losses (which, thankfully, are very few) and move the hell on!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


I'm stuck. In several different ways. So I'm going to use this post, today, to try and un-stick, unravel, and generally undo the some of the not-so-great patterns that I've found myself falling into as of late.

To start with, I'm not sleeping. At all and despite enough medication to knock out all of Carmichael and parts of Fair Oaks. Last night, I never fell asleep. Not for one minute. I watched the clock with every passing hour, knowing full well that I was going to be a really unhappy camper today. Which I was. Am. I gotta get some good rest. SOON. I "SOS-ed" my sleep doctor for help. But I really think that I need to "SOS" something on my cognitive level that's keeping me from getting decent rest.

I might not be sleeping well because I've developed some bad habits around my bedtime which is not good for someone with a delicate sleep constitution like mine. But I wrestle with this one because how can I have a fun, healthy social life when I have to be in bed at 9pm taking deep, full breaths and letting go of the day? Twice this week, I went out for drinks instead. And dearly paid the price.

I was doing SOOOOO well on curbing the emotional eating. Then I had a little backslide. Then a bigger one. And a couple more. But I'm trying to cut myself a little slack on this one because overall, it's much better and I know that this will be my torch to carry for the rest of my life. There has to be some forgiveness in the accountability. Otherwise, I'd be miserable all the time. I'm working on that. It's a definite work in progress.

My Mr. Great caused some serious cuticle chewing on my part this week. So I decided to set him free. On our fifth date last night, as he was telling me about how he's "scared" because he "likes me a lot" (I'm using quotes here because aren't these such typical sentences for a male???), I surprised myself by saying, "Well, that's YOUR issue. I can't help you with that one. I guess you have your own choices to make relative to this." That was that. I didn't tell him why he should like me. I also didn't go home with him when he asked. Why would I? I know I like him. I know I like him a lot. But I'm not going to invest any more energy and subject my cuticles to more chewing until there is a little more assurance from him. I don't think that's too much to ask for.

I've hit the highlights of this mountain of stuff that seems to be sitting directly on my shoulders right now. It's kind of amazing how when I write it out like this, I can start to feel - and to see - that it's quite possible to find a little peace even in the midst of fatigue and uncertainty. I'm already feeling the lessening of the physical effects of a sleepless night and the boost of a day with purpose and I know I can shore up what I need to - in terms of energy - to see myself and my family through to the end of today. For now, that's all I need.

Monday, March 8, 2010


I can't think of a better title for this post.

Dating after the age of 35. Dating as a single parent. Dating single guys with kids. It can all spell disaster, despite how you add it up.

I'm about to drag out my old copy of "The Rules" for a quick refresher on how to do this. Or add "He's Just Not That Into You" to my Netflix queue so that I can give myself a painful reality check. Or swear off dating for good. Wait, I already did the third and it didn't do me any good because so-and-so thought that I'd be great with Mr. Great even though I was in dating exile. That's how she and every other person I talked with describe him, "Oh, Janeen. He's SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO great!"

Really? Because this, this moment, as in, RIGHT NOW doesn't feel so great. I mean, there's been a glimpse of greatness - here and there - and those times are beyond great. But then I get pulled back and I have to be very honest and real with myself over whether or not Mr. Great is ready to be great with me.

My friend said today, "This isn't about you. You ARE great. If anything, most guys fall for you too quickly. They know the real deal when they see it. This is about HIM."

It felt better to look at it like that. In the meantime, can two canceled dates be salvaged by tomorrow? 7pm Tuesday. Third time is a charm. Or three strikes, you're out. Which way will it be, Mr. Great?

Friday, March 5, 2010


When Ben's gone, I miss him terribly. When he's here, there are times when I'm counting the minutes until his dad comes and gets him. Like now.

He has been with me since last Friday. Kevin's been in Maui. Ben came down with pneumonia last weekend and missed school for half of the week. His nights were filled with feverish discomfort and coughing fits that were so intense that he gagged. Good times.

The ER doctor suggested a new, more potent round of antibiotics this time around which I readily agreed to. The upside is that the bacteria was gone in record time, as was the temperature. The downside was that my son turned into Lucifer and has been a complete shit since the meds hit his system.

Once Ben began to feel better, he took full liberty to unleash his nasty, medication induced behavior on everyone. He pushed his pizza across the table and screamed for a full 30 minutes about how awful it was and that he would never touch it again. He called me in the bathroom to clean up and waited behind the door, only to slam it into me. He unbuckled his seatbelt in the car, while we were on the freeway, and then taunted me with how far he could pull the strap. He passed by the television that my mom was watching, backed up, paused and then slammed his fist into it.

What. The. Fuck. This is not my child.

Kevin finally crawled out from whatever pukka shell he's been hiding under to let me know that he's home from Maui and indeed, all ready for Ben on Sunday.

We have more one more day. Fortunately, we're going on a road trip to my dad's and there will be lots of Nintendo time, while Ben fantasizes about all the great toys that Grandpa will buy him. And by this time tomorrow, I'll be one day closer to my much anticipated and way overdue day of rest.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


Life has been anything but centered lately. Chalk it all up to lack of sleep and sheer exhaustion.

Ben's jet lag segued into a cold which escalated to pneumonia and landed us in Urgent Care on a beautiful Sunday morning. Last night was the first night that he's slept a full night with me since his return from Italy.

I had my own sick day on Monday. I was tired beyond belief and I think my body did the ultimate shut-down. I missed a day of work and a day of life in general, since I didn't leave my bedroom.

I'm really trying to stay peaceful and as balanced as I can, despite having a sick child and an absentee ex (he's in Maui).

It's interesting. I'm continuing to spend time in quiet reflection, letting the answers to my many questions come as they will. And they are; coming, that is. Such perfect clarity on so many things that I was so unclear about.

I can't say that my entire life is crystallizing before my eyes but there are parts that are becoming clearer every day and I love that my intuition and my willingness to surrender are finally serving me in ways that I never thought possible.

Thursday, February 25, 2010


I've been reclusive lately. Not my choice. Just listening to the Universe and trying to follow the 'master plan.'

Deepak Chopra and his words of wisdom regarding silence have been resonating strongly and I've been following the inner voice that's telling me to lay low, be quiet, wait for direction.

And now that I've gotten all zen here, let me break the spell by saying that I got up this morning expecting to work, grocery shop, clean house, write, meditate and kill a few brain cells on "Californication."

It didn't quite work out that way.

Because Nancy called and said she wanted to go to yoga. And a message popped up on Facebook from the studio owner saying that she had a guy she wanted me to meet. And then we all showed up to yoga and four of us went out after for dinner and two of us went out after that for drinks and now I'm attempting to log out my day - at nearly midnight - and I'm completely taken aback by life's opportunities and chance encounters.

I met someone really interesting tonight. A profoundly spiritual person who has suffered more loss than I could ever imagine. In the short course of just four hours, I learned a great deal. I gained a clearer appreciation of the situations in which we are presented and how each is a lesson. I laughed quite a lot. I made a new friend. One that I'm sure is worth more than just another "Wall" on Facebook.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


The thing with divorce is that it creates tangled, sticky messes of seemingly everyday life. For a long, long time.

My ex and I cannot cut the ties of our relationship. The main tie - being Ben - is almost the easiest to manage, at this point. I never thought I'd say that. Co-parenting with Kevin, regardless of trips to Italy during the school year and inconsistent bedtime routines, is much simpler than the financial and emotional ties that we share.

In the span of two short weeks, we have spiraled into yet another vortex of raw emotion, fueled by financial commitments to one another and unresolved sadness.

It would have been a much more successful divorce had we both absolved the other of financial responsibilities and waved a magic wand of forgiveness.

But we didn't do either and now we are stuck between between two layers of one messy cake.

And right in the middle is me watching Ben lunge for Kevin's girlfriend and want to cuddle with her, Kevin sending middle of the night emails from Italy with regrets and "what ifs", the prospect of Kevin's girlfriend moving in with him (and Ben), mortgages that are stuck because we're both still intertwined in the details, Ben asking why I can't go on vacations with him and Kevin when "there are three seats across in the airplane; one for you too, Mommy."

The situation at hand is immobilizing but I think that it's supposed to be. I've always thought that when you don't know what to do, making at least one decision can help you find your way. But not in this case. My heart, my gut, everything is telling me to pause. To sit still. To wait. Because something will unfold.

Friday, February 19, 2010


Ben is home.

He was here when I got off work tonight, all plunked out on the couch looking hungover and sick. Of course he's NOT hungover (unless his dad's teaching him how to party like a rock star at age 6) and I highly doubt that he is sick (yet). The boy has a nasty case of jet lag.

He could barely raise his eyes to look at me when I walked in. Eyelids were half-mast and from what I could actually see of his eyes, they were mostly red.

"What did you do to him?" I asked Kevin.

"He's exhausted. He's been up since 4am and we ran around all day today."


Three guesses as to what I'll be doing in the 4am hour.

Nevertheless, I pried Ben off of Molly long enough to smother him in kisses and lock my arms around him, pausing just for a moment to open the gifts that he and Kevin brought for me (Italian beret style hat and olive oil and another TBA gift. hmmmmm.).

Ben was asleep within seconds of hitting the pillow and I can hear his rhythmic breaths from the kitchen now. That is one tired kid.

So glad he is home. I'm already feeling less displaced and more like my old "mom" self. It's a good feeling.

Thursday, February 18, 2010


Ben is en route home. I talked to him tonight after he cleared customs and picked up luggage. "Mommy, I miss Molly so much. I can't wait to see the girl. Do you think she missed me? Do you think she'll jump up and down when she sees me? Did she look for me when I was gone? Do you have any new Legos for me?"

And then:

"I didn't really miss you as much as I missed Molly. But Daddy says I get to spend NINE DAYS with you while he goes to Maui next week. NINE DAYS! I'm so excited to spend NINE DAYS with you and Molly!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

Well, thank goodness for Molly.

Today, I worked. I have a new, challenging client and an existing, challenging client. They are both on Thursdays. One is limited by her own self-imposed ideas of inflexibility; the other is limited by the fact that she is a total bitch. I came close, in that last sentence to using the "c" word but for now, let's just say that the only "c" word I'm going to use is this: "client."


I forgot to mention that another client - far from a bitch or "c" - came to see me yesterday and she made me cry with her sweetness. I have good people in my business. And in my life.

I had coffee when one of my peeps today. A former student turned friend. She's still a student but has moved in to my close emotional space to share secrets and advice and laughs. She also inspires me. With a serious autoimmune condition, she's followed a diligent eating plan that encompasses protein, vegetables and not a lot else. She has three boys and a rocking yoga body and the purest diet of anyone I know. Living large, in her world, is a teaspoon of agave in her coffee. As I dumped about a half a cup of half and half in my Americano...

After my crying incident yet again in church last week, I felt like I needed to write our Dean a note and tell him how much I appreciate his wisdom. The note turned into an outpouring of emotion and included regrets and sorrow about my failed marriage. Which fit into the context of his message last weekend. It felt good to get a lot of that "muck" out - and direct it toward someone who is way holier than I. Yet, here I am, nearly four years later, wondering about all the love that Kevin and I still hold for each other and how severely we let our marriage go off course and how in the world I can ever make peace with that. I'm glad, at the very least, to be dealing with it in a way that feels appropriate and healthy and even spiritual.

Since speed dating was canceled, I took my refund to Crossroads, which is like the mothership to me. It was fun to spend my last night of "motherhood hiatus" with no time constraints and a little cash to spend.

Ben comes home tomorrow night. I work until 8; my mom will have him ready to go to bed when I get off work. Who knows if he'll actually go down; it could be a long weekend of fighting of Amalfi Coast time. But I'm ready.