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Days Like These

24 Oct

Red light, and I Love Rock ‘N’ Roll is blasting on my radio. Naturally my head is swaying from side to side as I shout out “so put another dime in the jukebox baby“.

I look to my right, suddenly aware that people may be staring. And indeed, a dark haired bristly faced young man is smiling widely at me. I smile back and shrug my shoulders. I decide to keep singing, staring ahead to avoid embarrassment. I’m enjoying myself way too much to care about what he thinks, but after what seems like forever, I glance to the right, just to check if he’s still looking. And there he is, staring ahead, banging his head and moving his lips…

We are two people at a traffic light, not giving a shit and enjoying a good shout out with the radio. I love it.

And why has my mood so dramatically improved? Well, that’s easy. The morning after good sex is always glittery, magically energized and optimistic. I know I said I wasn’t going to sleep with any more exes, but I totally lied. This is the guy I dated for three months over the summer, and I made sure he knew exactly what the deal was. Man, was it a good deal.

For most of my adult life I wasn’t crazy about sex. It’s not that I didn’t like it, it’s just that I didn’t really understand what the big deal was. My favorite part of it was the foreplay and the cuddling afterwards. That was before I learned to completely let go. Not being yourself is exhausting. I could never let my guard down during sex, be myself, worry about my pleasure and what I wanted. It was all about looking hot from the right angle, hiding what I was uncomfortable with, pleasing who I was with. Obviously it was a relief when it was over and I was rewarded for my hard work with affection and praise (which I should have been getting regardless).

I know in this blog I have a tendency to demonize BD a little bit. It isn’t fair. It’s not like he was never affectionate or warm. It’s not that we had horrible sex. But in retrospect, there was a whole side of me he didn’t even know, and it wasn’t his fault. I didn’t know it either. Now that I do, I love it, and I want to share it. That spicy, flirtatious, giggly gal, that feels confident (most of the time) about her body, that feels entitled (most of the time) to pleasure.

With everything that’s happened in the last two years, I have today a greater appreciation of everything in my life. I love my body for functioning and my mind for calculating, and my heart for loving and for aching, as it is meant to. It’s not that the world is suddenly pink and shiny, some things still suck terribly, but I love knowing that there are days like this, where I can drive home from a deliciously steamy night out, and raise the volume on my radio and sing loudly, giving anyone who doesn’t sing along with me the finger.


Out of My Head

6 Jan


I was in a kind of nostalgic mood yesterday, so I dug up some old CDs and started listening to them, allowing the songs to send me each in turn back to a different period of my life. Duran Duran, REM, Radiohead, Semisonic, Guns and Roses. After switching a few CDs I got stuck on Fastball’s All the Pain Money Can Buy, listening to it again and again, specifically to song number 10, Out of My Head. I must have been around nineteen when I first got hooked on this song and couldn’t stop humming it. Nineteen. Hmmm. That was the year I met BD.

We met online. Back then everyone was on ICQ, remember those “uh-oh”s indicating incoming messages? The beginning of instant messaging, the thrill and freedom of faceless communication.

I was going through a difficult time back then. Maybe I’ll write about that some day. But that night I had gone out dancing with some friends and came home at 3 am, tipsy and weary after all the goofing around. I was in a good mood for once. Things were looking a bit better for me. So I decided to go boy-hunting online, as I had done several times before (which had led to some terrible/awkward/depressing dates). I did a search. I was looking for a guy, ages 18-25, who liked Radiohead, which I was completely  hooked on at the time, who read, and, well I don’t remember, there may have been a couple of other criteria.

Three guys popped up, and I wrote “hi” to each of them, and waited for an “uh-oh”, and it arrived. Uh-oh indeed. He was a 20 year old boy, witty and amusing, fun to chat with, full of excitement about life. That was my first impression of him. He seemed to always be going out, especially to concerts (he’d gone to that Radiohead concert I had been dying to go to and could not get a ticket) and he could quote poetry, which completely got to me, although I later discovered he had been copying passages directly out of a book.

We chatted for a couple of hours. Then we exchanged numbers and spoke on the phone several times. Finally it was time for the date. Having dated more than a few creeps that year, I told him we’d meet at a book store by my house, that way I could walk there (I didn’t have a car or a driver’s license back then) and we could meet and chat before I decided whether I was getting into a car with him.

I arrived first, a couple of minutes early, and then he strolled in. I hadn’t seen a picture of him, and he hadn’t seen one of me. Blind date. He was cute. Very thin. I immediately figured he would think I was fat (I had some serious body image issues back then). We hugged and chatted for a bit and then drove to a cafe by the beach. I remember exactly what I was wearing. A blue flowery skirt and a tight pastel green tank top that made my boobs look awesome, and my only pair of heels which were strapless sandals. I think I had my hair down. I may have worn an anklet, actually I’m almost sure I did.

BD was fun to be around. He seemed to know everyone, anywhere we went. The waiter at the cafe was friends with him and gave us a free bottle of wine. We shared a piece of cake. Then we went for a walk along the beach. He made a crack about having gotten us a room at a fancy hotel we walked by. On the beach we sat on the sand and chatted but he was to timid to kiss me. Then he drove me home. At the door, he gave me a peck on the cheek, but I’d had enough of his shyness, so I pulled him toward me a gave him a good soft kiss on the lips. We met the following 3 nights as well. We went to a movie, where we held hands, and I was so electrified by the touch of his fingers that I couldn’t concentrate on the movie at all; then to a club, where we made out on the empty second floor until getting kicked out. That night I didn’t invite him upstairs, because I knew what would happen if I did, and I wanted to take things slow.

I was in love. I told my mom that I thought this could be it a few months into the relationship. We had a lot to talk about, we had amazing sex, we enjoyed the same things: movies, food, travelling, and shared the same ideas. We were both excited to embark on an adventure together.

Man, I miss that time terribly. When everything was as fresh as the bright blue sky. The two-hour-long phone conversations. The kissing, God I miss the kissing. Later in life closeness became about sex, which was fine, especially when the sex was good, but I miss the excitement and anticipation of a good kissing session.

And now, here I am, listening to Fastball again, flooded with memories of how I met the love of my life, the man that I married, who gave me the most amazing gift of all, my beautiful son. The man who left me because he had become unhappy, and had decided that he didn’t deserve to live that way. And although I realize that we are over, and a part of me is ready to move on, the song keeps playing again and again in my head, and I can’t help but fantasize about the man I used to love coming back to his senses, realizing that we are a family, that it’s worthwhile to try and work things out.

“Was I out of my head? Was I out of my mind? How could I have ever been so blind? I was waiting for an indication, it was hard to find. No matter what I say, only what I do. I never mean to do bad things to you. So quiet but I finally woke up, if you’re sad then it’s time you spoke up too.”