100,000 miles ago

100,000 miles ago

100,000 miles down…..100,000 more to go….

My absence can be explained in 1 word: adventures.  Here’s proof: a couple of days ago, my car odometer rolled to 100,000 miles. I put on every single one of those.

I started thinking about where I was 100,000 miles ago, compared to where I am now.  Back then, it was January 2004….I named her “Scarlett Zaza” — which means “red movement” — it’s a red car with a manual transmission.

There was a different boy riding shotgun.  I was shopping for my 1st gig out of school in my field of study, as I had just finished my internship and started capstone classes.  I was driving around central Illinois farm roads.  I used to cruise in an itty-bitty-dot-on-the-map town north of my college to break in my engine (the 1st 1,000 miles are critical to engine health, according to my dad).  I wasn’t making the best decisions then, but at 22, I was still trying to figure out me and where I fit in to the world.  Fast-foreward 9 years: I’m on the verge of my 32nd birthday and my car is now an orphan.  My 1st roadtrip took me to Columbus, Ohio to visit a friend.  My last roadtrip took me to a burb of Washington DC with family.  It’s driven through 10 states.  It’s the same car where I cried from all they way down Illinois 121 after a break-up, went to my 1st job, had my 1st blind *bad* date,  and I picked up my wedding dress in it.  It was the car that brought me into Wilmington with all the possessions I could fit in it.  I get bad gas milage on it now because of all the sand that’s accumulated from surfing (My husband likes to say “Kure Beach called and wants its sand back”).  It’s survived 7 moves, 4 relationships – 2 of which where actual relationships…..one was “just friends” and the other we never put a label on…., and 4 jobs.  It’s driven down the Magnificent Mile (aka Michigan Avenue downtown Chicago) and the backroads of southern Pennsylvania wine country. I live at the beach with the most amazing man I’ve ever met, who impressed me on our 1st date because he knew how to drive stick.  Most of all, I am in a better place physically, mentally, and spiritually than I was when I drove it off the showroom floor in Ottawa, Illinois.

I have come a long way in 100,000 miles.

Jeremiah 7:29

Nearly 10 years ago I was few months into my career when I hit a wall.  Due to some circumstances in my life at the time, I fell into a deep depression.  And unlike the other low points in life I had experienced, this was not something I could will into being; my hard work and effort were not going to change the situation or make it better. That was a hard pill to swallow.

As a person of action, I needed to do something.  Anything.  So I cut off my long hair to just below my ears. I had never had my wavy hair that short before. It was liberating.

It was also a bad decision.  My hair has a mind of it’s own; the right side does something completely different from the left side and without spending an hour on my hair every morning, it was a mess until it grew out.  Lesson learned.  Also, a boy I was with at the time said I looked best with long hair.  I’ve been growing out my hair ever since.

Right now, my hair is the longest it’s ever been: a few inches below my bra strap.  It’s beautiful, long, wavy, thick – which can also be fun when you live in a very humid place such as eastern North Carolina.  With all the trouble I’ve been facing as of late, I have decided to cut if off, so it falls just below my shoulders.

My original plan was to grow it out to my “terminal length” – where I am genetically programmed to stop.  I’m not going to make it.  My hair is constantly up in a very messy bun at work (I also lack the girl skills of doing my hair and making it look good).  I tried it 1/2 up, 1/2 down, but ended up putting it all up because it interfered with a common task I do that would involve getting biohazardous waste in my hair.  Not cool.  It’s getting harder to brush because it’s actually longer than the reach of my arms.  I’m ready for something different.

It’s a combination of lifestyle factors, the want of something new, and a physical way to lighten the yoke.

I have this feeling it’s right before dawn again my life: I just don’t know what’s next….morning or mourning.  Either way, I’m prepared.

X marks the spot

I think it would be awesome if all of my ex-boyfriends got together and formed a band.  I would totally pay to go see them.

Half of my “ex’s” tho, are actually pseudo-boyfriends — er, friends with benefits I guess would be the closest thing to it; all the perks of a relationship without all that emotional commitment crap. ((The fact that I am very happily married is quite a feat in itself.))

I learned recently through a mutual friend that my ex, Lys, is engaged.  Lys was my 1st real love in college; he was my gateway drug into drinking and sex.  We lasted 3 years (with intermissions), complete with an encore presentation post college that ended with my shattered dreams and a young hot new girlfriend for him.  He was probably one of the smartest guys I knew; his logic far surpassed my own. Lys had a quick wit and was very interesting, always in some sort of adventure, like myself.  We instantly clicked.  He manipulated me emotionally and I let him – his online life via RPG was top priority over me, too.  I lost myself in him and before I knew it, my reality and identity were wrapped up in him.  When he left me (twice) for a beautiful blonde co-worker, my world came crashing down.  I lost 20 pounds, went into counseling, got alcohol poisoning one night, and basically started digging as fast as I could once I hit rock bottom.

It took several years, some medication, and a move 5 states away to really get my wits about me again.  The scars are healed, but some of the residual hurt still remains and continues to this day.  I grew accustomed to being insanely independent because he was one not to be counted on (unless it was convenient to him), and unfortunately, some of that spills into my marriage.  It’s a process, something I need to work on.

Anyway, he’s engaged to some girl I never met and have only seen in pictures on Facebook.  She’s absolutely beautiful with a gorgeous smile.  “They make a great couple,” says my source.  The last time Lys and I spoke it was at a bar, in Summer of 2005 when I finally had closure and the loose ends tied up.  It was great because I got to spend an evening with the Lys I knew once upon a time.  I knew the vile and decaying parts of him were just below the surface, but it was a good visit and we ended on good terms.  I haven’t had any contact of any sort with him since that night and I aim to keep it that way.

I know I’m not the same person I was all those years ago and I hope to God that he is not either.  My source commented that he’s grown up since, with a few minor issues.  I hope they’re right.  I wonder if his marriage will work out in the long run.  I wonder if it will turn out like me and the few other girls who got caught in his web: things are great until they become everyday mundane; and then he’s out of there in search of the next best thing. Tool said it best: “I will find a center in you, I will chew it up and leave.”

I know I can’t compare him to what he once was with me, but as my mother says, a leopard doesn’t change his spots.  I wish him nothing but the best; I would want him to say the same about me.

I asked my source one question: “Does he treat her better than he treated me?”
They replied, “Yes.”

And that is already a great start.