Lost in Txtlation

These are the cookie crumbs for my depreciating mind.

Month: March 2014

Things Change

I used to believe there was this conscious effort that went into finding the right person quicker than others. I am not talking about meeting them and then getting to know each other, but through personal exploration, sense of self, cultural differences, there was a possibility to see fireworks/ hear music the first time you met. That to me seeing multiple people at once, I.E. “Dating”, was a waste of time where you could be learning the most you could about one person to see if it would work or not, then move on. Shoot like an arrow so to say.

Movies like 500 days of summer made me wince as she took on multiple relationships at once, mind you a very different and intense version of “dating” but one I figured was and is happening all around. People who are afraid to commit, so they just wait until enough time has passed where a decision is made for them on which side of the coin they choose versus flipping it.

But what I am realizing as I learn more about myself is that sometimes that first date is nothing even close to who we are regardless of how self aware we are. In my case, being hyper aware of my surroundings caused me to unintentionally act differently. Validating myself so the person across from me would accept me, putting our needs as whole to the side and worrying about what they thought. The simplest example is being unsure how to tell someone upon first meet “I don’t think this is going to work out” and remove myself from the situation, without becoming uncomfortable.

So now that I am becoming aware of what it is to be myself and to act myself, I can see that obviously others have to be going through the same thing. Then take that and multiply it by how far they have thought about it or how much effort they have put into themselves. So it is no longer me thinking that “giving all up front” is the key(although I believe being open is still important), but being able to “be consciously yourself upfront” is an important first step to getting to know someone.

My projections of how someone may date and the such apply to this newer idea as well. To just date 5 people at once is still weird in my head, but I understand it if you are going into it without an act and honestly just trying to let the organic nature of human interaction take its course. We really don’t know the other person on the other end of the relationship and won’t for quite some time. We may feel an attraction and it feels great, but knowing and feeling “happy” are so different.

You can bring in the talk of sex here but I think it goes beyond the physical. It is about the part of you that doesn’t need that sensation.

For me, I feel like my biggest step lately is just understanding, knowing I am struggling and constantly consciously working on being me on a date, that the other person is too. And regardless of the outcome, I am OK with it because I am being me. I can only bring myself to the table. I no longer have interested in “turning the tables”. By learning and applying that I myself become calm, collected, and meditative on what might otherwise be a struggled date through the above, it has made the simple act of breathing out in between sentences and stumbling over context or conversation a comfort and normal.

It feels wonderful when you are OK with it yourself and even better when the person with you accepts it as well. I think it benefits both people, it turns a “first date” best face forward, into a conversation between two people. It opens you up to stories, memories, and things that can bring you joy and intrigue. The two of us are laying the groundwork for a friendship.

I still believe in being an open book, but my book now has a cover to help let me close it if I don’t want to read anymore/need a break or give that great crackling sound down the binding if I want to read more.

The problem with “Prince Charming”.. he is the rebound.

He “saves” the woman, the woman is swept off her feet, falling for him and only him.

Sooner or later the Princess learns an important lesson, Prince Charming can’t actually save her from herself.

Either she realizes she needs an understanding of herself first or she will end up falling into, once upon a time again, a deep sleep in which she must once again be awoken by “Prince Charming”.

Not such a charming cycle is it?

Tristan Pope, Lostintxtlation

Convincing Explanations

I find myself learning more and more about my securities and defenses. I often consider myself someone without walls, which is true to a point, but then I see an act, albeit a very sincere one, being played out in front of me at times. My own mouth the main actor.

For example, if I were to explain to you my ideas of how relationships work and sharing a lot of feelings up front with no reservation, I would give you a scenario about Europe, my childhood, the way of life there, and how I was raised. This gives you context but in a roundabout way of saying my unabated thoughts on the topic. By putting it in this context I have a third degree of separation removed from the idea that you may reject my ideals and the topic at hand. I have placed them into the context of my life instead of me, as a person, in that very moment I am saying it.

On the other hand, I could tell you I think sharing a lot right away is refreshing, a breath of fresh air, and the way I expect to see things; but there is a chance I get rejected from that idea or judged. While that judgement would be an accurate way for me to assess a relationship, in a deal breaker sense, I have created these “explanations” or “stories” that one would tell their boss on a sick day, instead of just saying “I don’t want to come in today, my work is done, I need a day off”. It beats around the truth in the way a Fool jests the truth, making it acceptable to be laughed off or listened to intently. I have found the “formula” for relaying my own beliefs so that the person in front of me can be “impressed” instead of judgemental. I have figured out how to pad myself from rejection or snap judgements. While I still think there is validity in doing it this way, so you don’t get thought of as the “clingy” or “over analytical” person, it doesn’t do much to help me find the person who accepts the things the way I see them in the long run. Later on, the person could dislike the same idea I just told them while we had our first drink as I set off the pyrotechnics with flashy dance numbers. The presentation may have impressed them, but it didn’t help them to assess it for themselves, thus not allowing my own assessment to be accurate.

I get afraid of people jumping to conclusions of who I am, what I like, and how I see the world, because it is true, I do think about shit intensely, I do have a lot to give right away, but I have been privileged to so many people jumping to the conclusion that, “it is too much too soon” or “all I have to give”, that I have searched for the long winded stories that accompany my feelings, thoughts, desires, and self. It is tiring to have to accompany what could be considered a yes or no answer with notation to read chapter 3 and 4 to truly understand the meaning.

I am pressed to write out that explanation right now, to tell anyone reading this that, spending time as a child in Zurich and abroad helped me to see interpersonal relationships in a different light, to feel more connected quickly, to not be disappointed if things didn’t work out, but to be happy to meet new people and form strong bonds, to not find boobs to be shocking but a natural way of life, to sit 1 inch too close because personal space is boring. To tell you about my friends in Denmark and France that I have stronger relationships than I have with anyone here over less time because we accepted one another based off very truthful, raw, moment conversations. To explain how on Sundays every store, gas station, business is shut down, forcing people to interact, go over to friends for dinner, converse, and just focus on the social aspects of life. Giving for one day, interpersonal relationships more importance that our careers and materialistic needs. But it doesn’t help me. It helps you. It helps you to either “accept” my explanation in that moment or it confuses you because you haven’t lived in that world, therefore you accept it as my “quirk” and consider it something you will learn more about overtime. But there is no more explanation overtime, my me, my “who I am” is the same right then, as it will be two months from then, as it will be with a boss, family member, best friend, and girlfriend.

So I am learning, I am growing, and ultimately I am becoming more comfortable being me.

Love will find you… but stop hiding!

My mother always told me to “wait, be patient, love would come to you”.

If and when I hear this today, I can’t help but think this is the furthest idea from the truth. Either it is my innate need to rebel against my mother’s advice or it is my sense of self being defined enough to know that the “Love will find you” love is not the love I want. I do not strive for the staple white picket fence, mortgage, two kids, and flat screen TV 2 inches bigger than my neighbors. My white picket fence is not a place or a thing, it is a feeling, a way of being. My “hallmark family” is defined by how we live our lives and treat the world around us, not building up a literal and metaphysical wall to create a new world, isolated from the paved street filled with other’s also hiding in their own homes, feet from one another. My ideal love is able to live in the world in front of me, to be present for the ups and downs, and to feel everyday as intensely as the last.

I have written many things about two people’s timeline’s and how that can affect your ability to love and that once you do love that love alone, is not enough.

The question I often struggle with is, how do you “find” love then? We seem to be OK with it “finding” us, but someone has to be doing the hunting. If it isn’t me, who is it? If your mother taught you the same thing, what kind of stasis is love attracting us to one another in?

If you do run into a situation where there is a potential for love, should you grab it by the head or should you, like a child, pull its hair and run away giggling, in hopes that it got the clue? We often use words like “clingy” or “intense” to define those who show their true intentions up front when it comes to the topic. I come off as the little kid yelling “Mom, Mom Mom” still, but I’m just excited about most new things and people in my life. I find it to be a tricky tight rope to walk, not only for the other person and to not scare away the deer who heard the twig break, but to also keep your own guard and not get trampled by an idea of love. To keep the balance of self vs infatuation, letting it breath and grow naturally, but also adding wood to the stove before it burns out too quick. 

Finding someone else regardless of the social constraints:

  • Who pays the bill

  • Who buys the first drink

  • When you split the bill

  • who sends the first message

  • Who txts first

  • Who calls first
  • Who says I love you first

What does it all really matter or mean in the long run?

In an organic situation you will find someone attractive and then subsequently judge them based on who they are. What you do in that moment is almost irrelevant, since if and when you decide one day to spend the rest of your lives together today is going to be a distant memory. You will remember feelings, looks, exchanges. You won’t remember the taste of the food or the price of the wine. Things change, jobs change, we change… but our connections grow and to grow together surpasses the social confines of a date.

We shouldn’t put so much pressure on the first impressions or circumstances rather than the person right in front of us. The thing that is most important.

So maybe that is the answer to “letting love find you”; allowing yourself to be open, vulnerable, and safe all at once, in the moment, with the person, regardless of the place, time, or everyday needs bestowed on you as a human being. Listening to them and them to you, letting go of your body to be yourself and actually see them and you in the full picture, before making a judgement or acting on an impulse. We don’t have to meet at the pinnacle of perfection we just have to meet. Then we have to be open to communication and understanding. Then if what ever interested us at our first “spark” is strong enough as we travel along our own life lines we will actually become two people who encourage and inspire one another.

By the way feel free to replace the word love in this with relationship or partner or girlfriend or friend at any point. You will find they all fit.

Just some food for thought today.

“The Hover” (+Add Friend)

I just spent what felt like endless time hovering over the “+Add Friend” button on Facebook of my last relationship. I had no music on, I had other shit to do, but I saw an update through some forgotten social media so I ended up clicking link after link until it ended up on the landing page of the once removed Facebook page. I literally had my face about 5 inches from my 30 inch monitor just staring at the button, mouse cursor over it. The inviting hued green color saying it was OK, my mind having a battle that parallels that of an open field revolution, both armies firing across, the same hue of green, grass at one another.

When I finally began breathing again, my brain felt like no one actually won. Just PTSD suffering symptoms resonating in all parts of my synapses still firing rapidly. Or maybe it was the lack of oxygen from staring at it for so long without taking a breath. “She is like your mother”, “She hurt you”, “She made you a better person”, “She inspired you”, “You got nothing done with her around”, “You liked the idea of inspiration versus the application”, “she is so talented”, “she is so beautiful”, “we had amazing chemistry”, “she abandoned you when she deemed it too hard for herself”, “she will do it again”, “Socks”, “we would make good friends”, “we can’t just be friends”(actually specifically I remember her saying to me we could never just be friends back when we were good).

I loved her, I momentarily hated her, I didn’t care anymore, I am offended and proud when she is successful, I keep wanting it back. The idea? Did the idea even have enough time to be one? I was her doorway from danger to safety. I was left in the hallway between the two doors. I am still in that hallway. I wonder if she ever see’s my “Add Friend” button. She should come back to me, not me to her. Would I even accept her? Would I even know if she accepted me, everything I knew about her was an expression, a breath, an internal sound, the words were just paper versions of what they should be, the real feelings were all in her eyes, and I no longer have access to those. All the time having “Buy it Now” syndrome, where I hover over an obvious impulse buy, which I probably can’t “afford”, but click anyway and don’t look back because it already ran your credit card. Even knowing you now have a small window to cancel it but wanting it enough to pretend it is final.

Regardless of being so introverted compared to me, an extroverted introvert as she said. Regardless of me trying to work to “compromise myself” without the same in return… I don’t want someone who can’t accept “Time” as a mutual enemy and skip the “readings”. I don’t want to get a PH.D to legally understand her. I’m glad I didn’t hit the button. But I am sad that I can’t. I am sad that we can’t just be in each other’s lives. I am sad she was such a good kisser. I am sad that my winter felt colder because the promise of her being there was broken. I am sorry I looked so far ahead. I am sorry she allowed it and sealed the ideas with a kiss. I am upset she was cowardly in her last message to me via text. How stereotypical she had become to use the media forms we both knew disconnect people from actual responsibility. Ultimately making me decide her fate, when she was holding the gun. Although it was a water gun, blinding, blatantly orange, no threat, just empty, no water, taped shut, never to be filled.

My brain continues arguing. “I still miss her.” “I still believe in her.” “The woman at Dunkin donuts said we looked good together.” “I still don’t know how to protect myself from her.” Why am I hovering over this fucking button!

So I pulled away, I decided to come here and write instead, I didn’t “break”. Then the equally calming hue of blue, with the words “Follow” on Instagram appeared…

image

That sparkle in your eyes…

Does this, turned cheesy pickup line, have actual validity? I feel as though there is a moment in any date, relationship, meeting, where the “glimmer” usually enhanced by a dimly lit wine bar or restaurant’s candle light turns from the casual side effect of ambient lighting to an emotional response to the person across the way from you. What the exact cause of it is is beyond me, but my speculation is that it combines the transition in our minds when we go from “getting to know them”, to “wanting to know them”. It is a micro expression of itself that we don’t control when we truly become interested in the person we are looking at. Their words become more interesting, the motion of their mouths slow down allowing us to make out the words before they finish, we equate the lips, rouge colors cheeks, and words as more than just a person talking, but a person we want to listen to tomorrow as well as the very moment we are in. I think the actual glimmer or sparkle is similar to what I have the models I work with do when we shoot glamour, a simple “half squint”.

Cooking show

The photography world according to Peter Hurley has defined this a “squinching” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ff7nltdBCHs

When we become sexually involved with someone or we try to entice, it is human nature to slightly purse our eyelids around the eye, this literally causes the refraction of light to change significantly as well as give us a bit of allure. So when we see the person across from as as someone we want to potentially kiss, the eyes squint slightly. But it isn’t just sexual, I find the transition also happens when we truly find the other person interesting mentally. It is our subconscious attempt to make ourselves more appealing to the other person inadvertently, so the lighting that we first introduced ourselves to one another in has now changed in our eyes.

We now have that glimmer or sparkle of the eyes. When that moment happens and you can recognize it, it is truly a beautiful experience. You become more attracted to the person, not because they have magically made themselves “sexier” but because they have given you a subtle hint that the night is going well. They have inadvertently told you, “I am paying attention”, “I find you interesting”, “I want to know more about you beyond this drink”. Be it emotional or sexual(or a mixture of both), the validation of knowing the person you are with finds you, in the simplest of explanations, “interesting”, is really a game changer. Obviously there is the problem that it is almost impossible to make a read on whether they are looking at you for your mind or your body, but when it is a combination and we both have it happen together, it is wonderful.

Guard drops, you feel more confident, and the sparkle will continue to intrigue you to keep more eye contact, which in turns raises tensions, personal connection, and open you up to yourself, allowing the other person in more: comfort. So the next time you are on a date and the lights dim, take a look at the person you are with, and see if their eyes have adjusted to the light or to you.

This sparkle, this glimmer, it doesn’t leave as love grows either. If anything this is something I have noticed, with more emotional attachment, grows in intensity. During day by day interactions it really shows when you are close to them in intimate settings. The “Two Face Theory”.

We can only be good at ourselves. Then when we meet someone else who is also good at themself and somehow our two selves match, then we can start working on being together.

Lostintxtlation

Oh wow throw back Thursday. My first date application I made awhile back. The girl in question said she was very busy and it would take a whole lot for her to have time to go on a date… Do me being me I made her this. I got the date and she is to this day one of my closest friends.

Far too many people are looking for the right person, instead of trying to be the right person.

Gloria Steinem

The First Time – Let’s be awkward, together.

Since, because I am a lover of discourse, the (wo)men of the city, rather than nature and the countryside, are my teachers. – Plato, Gorgias

With the current trend of books like 50 Shades of Grey hitting the top selling lists, you would think we would all just throw each other in cuffs, a blindfold, and have mind blowing sex the minute tensions arise. But like that book, life is filled with typos and awkward moments.

For me, that first sexual encounter always brings with it a level of anxiety. I am not talking run out of the room or curl into a corner anxiety. I am talking about having no idea beyond the few text interactions leading up, perhaps a Facebook stalk, and subsequent dates/drinks/light hearted conversations we have had, what the person in front of me actually likes, dislikes, gets turned on from, and if they care what turns me on.

I have always, since a very young age, raised with 5 sisters and hearing their horror stories of dates, made it a mission to be in control of my body, emotions, and sexual prowess. In short, I want to please the person in-front of me. I didn’t want to be so selfish that it brought someone to tears, so I put this first interaction before myself more often than not.

I will be the first person to say I have had difficulty performing the first time many times. Not because I am not extremely attracted to the person, but because I find many people when you first dive into this part of the relationship, get closed off and quiet.

Shit even typing about a first sexual encounter makes me question how it will come off to the general populous. Will I be judged for having sex on the 1st date or 10th? Will I be judged for not being able to perform? Will you just think I am broken or a player? Regardless I am going to tell you what it is like for me and then what it is like the second time.(even if that second time is a half hour later).

The first thing I do is gauge the lighting. I find that depending on the person the lighting is super important. Some want to see what they are unwrapping in front of them, and others want it to be a classical lights off, closed eye kissing, “first time”. I listen to their breathing while we kiss, watch the corners of their mouths as each kiss restarts over and over for that curl upward. I keep my eyes open majority of the time to see if they will make eye contact, I find the face of someone at that close proximity in what could be described as a broken down boundary to be beautiful. We can fall for someone at a distance or a 5 foot safety, but that close, the face becomes a new thing to look at, enjoy, and breath in. I love catching their eyes, having that moment where both I and they close them quickly almost embarrassed, but even more I love when the gaze gets locked. It helps to turn this very strange first exploration not only physical but emotional.  

That is something that is so hard when you first begin any physical exchange with someone, is understanding that much deeper level of emotion. Sex is intense and it does change things, I don’t care who you are. And what guys will never admit, is they are MUCH more subject to this kind of emotional attachment from sex than women are. For some men it is a territorial thing and some it is intimacy, or a mix of both. For me it is about the connection and not being positive it is a mutual feeling yet. And I don’t expect it to be clear that first time.

Are the hands on your back holding tightly because you are nervous or because you want me closer. How do you gauge what your emotional level is at this point anyway. Easy answer? You don’t. I don’t care if you are someone with a 3 date rule, 10 date rule, marriage rule, sex is so damn personal, no set of guidelines and conversation leading up to it is going to make it smooth. Sure you may be able to be dominant or submissive right off the bat, but there is a connection we all strive for that is mutual. When we let our guard down and don’t play a “role” things become scary. And this is why sex is scary for me at first, I am emotional, I love romance. However I have been a Dominant Leo all my life. Since I could first get it up I always found some sort forms of BDSM extremely sexy. Nothing in the self depreciating world, but the whole tied down, blindfold, outfits, and things that just spice the act up.  I may not be a certified dom and definitely too shy without the right trust to say the right things, but I am extremely observant and have learned quite a bit on my own. To have a partner in crime who is comfortable makes me comfortable, opening up the gate to a whole lot more.

But my big secret is that since I knew what a wet dream was, I was a submissive mindset. Let me define this better, I love to not have to control everything, I love for someone to be strong and be able to help guide me a bit or take control of the situation. I find it captivating when there is a balance of give and take. I will have my jaw break before I give up on figuring out what pleases you, so why should I expect less in return? Should I just accept the female/male power dynamic of “women can hold out sex to control their man?” What century are we in? To have put the same amount of thought and research into the male body as I have the female seems fair to me. I am 30 and still learn new things. So how can you as a woman who knows your body is different than others and will often admit it openly, say, “because it worked on the last guy”. I don’t want you to pull away because I can’t get off after X minutes like your ex and you feel depreciated or belittled. I am a new person, this is a new chemistry, and I am taking it all in. It is beautiful and overwhelming.

Why am I even talking about this when I am talking about “first encounters”? It all ties into the idea that you just don’t know that first time. You don’t know if you should pull the hair or caress it. You don’t know if you lock eyes if they will think you are getting too “involved” subconsciously and reel back from intimacy. So to even get to the more inner expressions of desire, I muddy my way through every bit of emotion I can get my hands on.

“It’s so prehistoric, all men care about is performance, but they have an appendage that doesn’t work if they are worried about performance.” – Love and Other Drugs

After all of this, you are usually fooling around for a certain amount of time before you actually engage in some sort of sexual intercourse. So now my mind is thinking about 10 gazillion things, your body language, your breath, your gaze, your emotes, the fucking lighting, all while trying to keep my little guy ready to go. Even talking about it makes me laugh out loud, there is no way to do this smoothly unless you have the ego of a neanderthal and are just there to get your fuck on. Add to that the worry that the person you are with will feel rejected if it takes you a moment after the foreplay to re-gain your “manliness”, and it is just a “rock hard” formula for disaster.

The sex itself is also an exploration. I have actually taught myself to be more vocal so the person I am with knows more of what feels good, but even then that first time, all I can think of is, “I don’t want to disappoint them” I want them to orgasm and feel good, but sometimes it comes at a small cost of exhausting my own ability without the right mindset on their end afterwards. I want to exhaust myself the first time, with a smile on my face, because I know the next time, I have so much more awareness and so much more emotional attachment.(yes I know, emotional attachment… scary)

The best experience I have ever had was when the person I was with, laughed during the awkward moments. They knew it was OK to be messy, it was OK to be scared, it was OK to have anxiety. It is amazingly fun to explore the other person, to ask awkward questions, to look to please the person you are hoping to see again and again. It is fun to touch the parts that have been covered up all night, it is fun to pull back for a moment and look, it is nice to start with the lights on to see what you have wanted to see for however long it has been before getting to this point.

So yes, I am not the perfect first time, but the second time, which could literally be after I go pee and relax for a half hour, I have heard your moans, I have touched your body, I am intrigued by your “sexual” look, I want to feel you again, and all of this lifts a huge amount of that first time pressure and allows you to just be more in the moment, but more connected at the same time. I got to see what you are like versus getting the synopsis in what these days is the obligatory “sexts” prior.

It can be equated to the simplest form of intimacy, the first kiss. After the first kiss, you know something about your partner, you know they are interested in you too. And so you pull about a foot away from them, open your eyes, and giggle a little, then you just start making out as if you have never kissed another person in your life because it feels good, physically of course, but emotionally, to feel as though you are validated. The person you are with is now partly closer to fulfilling the possible “meet the parents” question. OFF THE FIRST KISS? Yes, off the first kiss. I don’t care what anyone says, if you are actually looking for a relationship, open to dating, and want more than a one night stand, your mind will subconsciously run every scenario of the future it can, even if that subconscious moment is a nano second in between pursed lips.

So I am here, stumbling through my love life, and OK with it. Those imperfections, that struggle, that is what makes it worthwhile. Those moments when you get that tiny bit of validation, confirmation, two minds as one, and you literally smile from the inside out… I may have a moment where I am a stallion or a moment where I am a broken mare, but each moment is beautiful for what it is; sharing an intimacy with someone you hope will share it back, and each day that intimacy turns more into familiarity, that face when you are so close your noses touch becomes something you wish you could get a prescription glass to see it more clearly, and that person becomes someone who you look at and think, “It is OK to tell them about my 51st Shade of Grey”, so that familiarity doesn’t become stagnation or routine or a power play. Call it what you will: love making, fucking, first times, last times, they all are part of a process. I was once told through a message on my dating profile,

“"hmmm… This guy is a little too honest.“ … Then I thought, "I use to be that honest… When did that become a bad thing?” “

We set rules and guidelines based on social norms, the news, our friends experiences, disconnected(but well intentioned) advice from those around us, a revolving inspirational meme on tumblr, or a youtube video explaining “how to ____”, but we forget it is nothing more than someone else’s experience. I make sure to apply my own needs, wants, insecurities, and awkward laughter to the person in front of me, not the idea of what is happening, but what IS actually happening. I don’t know how to not be myself and that often scares me.

“That something is difficult is one more reason for us to do it" – Rainer Marie Rilke, Seven Letters to A Young Poet

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