I wrote to my friend Vlad this morning: I need to choose one of many topics and blog this morning!

As I assume many artists do, I keep a running list in my mind of all the projects I want to get to. Since I fancy myself a writer, my prominent list is of all the blog topics I will write. Then, before I get to them, new topics come up. And now look, it’s been 10 days and I haven’t written about anything!

Just off the top of my head, there’s:
1) What’s going on with politics, demonstrations, vandalism, violence, state TV, foreign media and all the rest in Iran! Wow! So exciting.
2) Our trip to Cali and camping and the ocean, seeing old friends over last weekend.
3) My “garden” is more like jungle, I can’t believe it. So awesome. I need, need, need to put up new photos.
4) Excitement at being contacted by a new beautiful Gaia soul who reached out to me. I can’t wait to get to know her better.
5) Writing about the foreclosure and loan modification process on our home, for those interested, those worried, those hopeful. Inspired by Love in the Time of Foreclosure.

…but in the interest of time, I’m simply going to copy an email I wrote to a family member this morning. It’s not really a hot topic on my mind, but it’s interesting, and says a little more about me.

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Yep Mark and I are happy together, but I need to set the record straight. You give me too much credit. It’s Mark’s second really significant relationship, and his total relationships he could count on his fingers. He’s a pretty loyal pup.

I, on the other hand, am currently in one of the longest relationships I’ve ever had. Crazy, huh? I’ve dated over 40 people, was married and divorced THREE times. I’m always seeking, unsatisfied, restless. I always manage to hook up with selfish partners who aren’t necessarily evil, but get that way when combined with my faults of enabling and playing victim and having extremely low self esteem.

My relationship life has been a total disaster. When I met Mark I was close to having completely given up, and he was feeling the same. In the beginning, we were together NOT because we thought we were dating!! ha ha. I had given up on men and he had given up on women and we both swore off marriage forever, and thought the only good thing about relationships was sex and who needs to be in a committed relationship for that? We are also both needy, clingy people, so we spent all that time together because we didn’t want to be alone. And it was easy to be together because we didn’t expect a damn thing from each other. We felt the same about love and the opposite sex. When Mark moved in with me in Fitchburg, we agonized about the terms of it for a long time, until we agreed that it was not a commitment, except his rent payment was a commitment and helped me continue to own the house.

However, we really liked our time together. We enjoyed each other physically. We enjoyed our talks. I loved meeting his family and learning about his life. We had these serious talks pretty often that were like “Ok, the day one of us doesn’t want to be here is the day this arrangement is over.” But…we continued to want to be together.

Maybe that was my secret to learning how to be happy. I needed to stop having so many irrelevant expectations.

Also, my Mark is an extremely spiritual guy. He has his days when he’s a total selfish, whiny brat, but if I can wait it out, he corrects himself. And I forgive him for it, because I know I can also be a horrible bitchy moody person and he keeps forgiving me for it. He never asks me to change. He makes fun of my habits sometimes, but not in a mean, you-are-wrong, kind of way, but just because he thinks I’m amusing. Mark is loving and loyal and it takes very very little to make him feel good.

Anyhow, somewhere along the line we realized that we were in love with each other. It wasn’t until after he moved to Portland. In fact, when we agreed to both move to Portland together, we still insisted to each other that the move did not commit us to each other, and that we were still free to go our separate ways in Portland if either one of us wanted to.

There did come a time when we hashed it out and made a new agreement, that we were in a committed relationship. It was a slow and painful transition. It took about a year probably. And the hurt and resentfulness that built up during the transition took another year to get worked out.

He is so wise. He told me soon after we met that he didn’t think he could get to know a person until they had been close for at least 5 years. Considering that none of my marriages had lasted that long, I thought he was crazy. But it’s been almost 5 years, and I am just now starting to think we’ve got things going on the right track between us. I am also aware that we both have a lot of work to do if we’re going to keep it healthy. Urg. What a lot of work.

But it is fun feeling love for a guy after all this time. I mean, getting all giggly and happy just to see him. That’s a new thing for me – to feel that way after years.

OK! Enough on that topic. I hope it wasn’t tremendously boring. I just didn’t want you to think that I’m a sweet innocent girl, floating along to guy number two and having it all work out. We have come through a lot of crap to be happy together. And that pain includes the things we have done to each other and somehow recovered from together.

Financial stress and deaths of loved ones has hit us hard in the last few years, and that makes everything worse. But I’m sure you guys know about that right now. Two of Mark’s closer friends in AA have killed themselves, now his grandmother dies of cancer. Urg. I think you are an optimist like me, so here’s to keeping your spirits up!

Newspaper clipping from the olden days

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