Friday, May 30, 2008

A Wonderful Evening After All

I have to tell you: yesterday was rough!

The emotional pain surfaced and was indescribable. All I can say was that it cut to the core of my being in a way that no one can really relate to unless you have been there.

Yesterday, mid-afternoon, Lovey called my cellphone. Yikes, in the midst of all I was going through, she was the LAST person I needed to talk to. So, I switched the ringer off on my cellphone. Sure enough, she left a message.

Before the end of the day, I decided to play my messages, and there was Lovey in all her cheery glory calling to say thanks about her birthday card I sent her. (She sent me one and came to the bash, so I returned the favor.) She then went on to say that she had not been able to talk with our son and wanted to know what was up with him.

She then shared that she was dealing with a lady from our mutual past and wanted to fill me in on that.

So, just as I was ready to leave my office for the day, I got up the nerve to return the call. Thankully it went to voice mail and I left a brief message.

So, I've not heard anything fruther from her.

After I was done with all that, my son called to say that he had set up my new grill and could I bring a couple of steaks home and fix dinner to eat on the deck/patio.

"Sure," I said.

What a neat way to christen the new grill and open the deck/patio for the summer! So I marinated the T-bones and threw them on the grill....with garlic mashed potatos (the marine's favorite), salad, corn on the cobb, hot rolls, butter, and then we had fresh strawberries for dessert.

Following all that food, he and I spent an hour talking in the growing darkness of a late spring evening.

I listened as he spoke of his mother in less than glowing terms. How he felt about her "walking out." AND how he felt that she didn't just walk out on his dad, but he feels she walked out on all the family. He also shared some conversations that he had had with at one point he told her basically that she had gotten what she she needed to be happy with her choices.

It was a good conversation.....not that we spoke of Lovey......but that he actually opened up to me....and let me see and feel the hurts he has experienced. This big, stoic, marine has had some real hurts inflicted by Lovey.......just as we all have. It hurts me to hear him speak of his pain.

But there isn't a thing I can do. The pain he feels, is akin to my pain. You can't ignore can't tunnel under around it.....or fly over it.

You just have to go right through the middle of it.

Embrace the pain.

It will pass.

I think.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Blues Continue/Happy Anniversary Frank

I have now been a divorced man for one full year!

Happy anniversary to me!

I talked to some folks yesterday who believe that divorce is much like a death. I think I've said that before. So, they say that that the first anniversary for that can be really why not a divorce. One person I chatted with said that her daughter, who has now gone through two divorces, has felt the exact same way.

So I guess I am "normal."

It's not that I miss Lovey. It's not that I'm bemoaning the fact that she divorced me.

I dealt with that long ago.

It's just how she did it......and the things she did and the things she said and wrote between the separation and the divorce that has stirred up all the sadness that appears to be my constant companion this week.

So, if you're a new reader....go back through the earlier posts to see what all I've been through and perhaps you may get an idea of what I'm talking about. (Although, I must admit, I didn't write about everything....)

Life goes on.

I've begun a new phase in my life.

It's just hard sometimes when those anniversaries come......

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

A Time For Honesty

I'm a little blue today.

This is probably not helped by the cool grayness of the day outside.

I'm not depressed....because as I have said so many times before, that word is way overused. It can mean a myriad of maladies -- not to mention clinical depression, which is very serious.

The correct word for my feelings today is just overall sadness. It's not the earthquaking....mindbreaking kind, but just one of those kind of days where you wish you were someone another locations.........and to camouflage your problems and wish them out of existence.

My mood is not helped by the serious illness of a four year old relative of mine in the Atlanta area. He kept complaining about how his legs hurt....and he had a stomach ache. They finally took him to is pedatrician only to find that he has got a very bad form of cancer that has spread throughout his little body. He's not going to make it. His family is distraught.....I'm devestated. It came from out of left field!

Then, tomorrow is the first anniversary of my divorce. I'm wistful. While I believe that I am so much better off than to be tangled with Lovey as I was three years ago....there's still that familiar feeling of aloneness that settles in at such times. I have no one to lean one to tell my dreams one to curl up one to help me make decisions.

It's just me....

and my dog.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

And so...the pot is stirred....

I've seen the responses that two people have posted to my blog today. I've also received some comments back channel.

The internalized homophobia I seem to be dealing with now at this juncture seems to be a fairly common occurrence among us fomerly married queer people. In my own little smug way, I thought I was over that. I thought I was accepting of myself....and of my longings.

But apparently not.

So, is that two or three giant steps backward on this journey???

Maybe more.

So here I sit a bit blue... I haven't been here in quite a while! I guess that is some progress...overall.

When I compare where I am now with this time last year....well, you know. You've been there with me. It hasn't always been pretty, has it?

Tuesday Morning

It's very quiet here at my house. Today is my last day off for the Memorial Day Weekend. My son is still asleep upstairs and I'm awaiting the furnace/ac people to come and replace the vent from my hot water tank....and look at the dryer vents.....and the vent on the roof that had been leaking some.

Hopefully they will be here by noon.

I've been contemplating my existence all morning -- just trying to sort out and figure out my feelings that I have. Sorry to say, I've not gotten any closer to sorting things out than I was when I posted a lot earlier in the morning.

In his comment, Rick raised some valid points. The way that I view things, life isn't all romantic. In TV programs for example, all we're seeing is what the writer and producers wanted us to see. They showed us what they believed to be the most important elements of the relationwhip. Still, the Greay's Anatomy episode did stir those old feelins that appear from time to time. Like having a pssionate.....serious relationship where I won't be seen as leftovers...but rather the main course. Where someone will want to take care of me....and be there for me. Where my knight in shining armor whisks me away to happily everafter.

[I'm not selfish....because I give just as good as I get.]

But life is never what we have in our fantasies. We all live in the real world where there is worry.......there is heartache........there is joy.......there is pain......there is laughter........there is happiness.......there can be contentment.

Still, the gay thing frightens me..... It's like the boogey man under my bed in the middle of the dark night.

I'm afraid of it sometimes.


The Gay Thing - Part 2

Yesterday was a relatively calm and peaceful day here at Chez Frank. I slept in very late...and then I had a quiet day of relaxation. I finally got up and showered around 7:30 p.m. to meet a friend for coffee and to grab dinner.

My son was busy going to Memorial Day parties, so I spent the day alone with my dog.

For all the moaning and groaning that I've done about looking for a mate....or longing for having a special man in my life....I'm amazed that when it really comes to where the "rubber meets the road"...I'm afraid of going "that" far.

So, where does this fear come from and why does it surface at this point in my journey?

How did I notice its presence?

Well, yesterday I got all caught up in watching this season's "Grey's Anatomy." One episode dealt with a soldier's bout with a brain tumor. In the course of the story, a buddy from his company shows up in fatigues. It seems that the sick soldier's father has called the buddy to help encourage his son during these serious treatments. As the story unfolds we find that these beautiful young men are more than friends. They are lovers. And, in pure soap operatic fashion during a tender moment in the hospital Dr. Grey looks on, they kiss passionately...only to be interrupted by the father. The father orders the young man to stay away from his son.

The lover sits in an adjacent waiting room....not able to communicate with the love of his life. Dr. Grey tries valiantly to intervene...but because of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell", the sick soldier goes off to brain surgery with only one last longing look at his lover in the waiting room -- afraid to incur the wrath of his father.

The young man dies on the table....the father relents and allows the soldier to come in to pay his final respects to his son....alone.

Dr. Gray watches from the doorway as the soldier approaches his loved one's lifeless form.... He bends down and gives the young man one final, tender kiss.

It tore my heart out.

But something else also tore my heart out.

Perhaps its my own internal homophobia. Could I ever be "that" open about things? Is it the fear of having a partner and letting the whole world know about that what's so frightening to me?

Am I better alone?

Or is it the fear of relationships in general?

I certainly don't have the greatest of track records when it comes to those now do I?

I just don't know.

The only thing that I do know is just how hard this "Gay Thing" makes everything.

Monday, May 26, 2008

The Gay Thing

The gay thing messes with me.

It has really played with my relationships. Everywhere!

I feel that it has definitely left me scarred a bit.

How do you date? Some of the things I have been through have left me mistrustful...and I find that I guard my heart with a fierceness. I don't want to get hurt.

But...on top of that I think that guarded fierceness sends out a message of unavailability. I can't seem to let myself relax.

Then on the other hand....I find that I look at every gay man as a potential partner. Or as someone to date.

How do I relax enough to know if a man is "the one"?

How do I reach the point of allowing myself the luxury of trusting again without the fear of the hurt....or the pain of the hurt.

At times I feel this gay thing just makes things harder.

All the way around.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Simple Pleasures That Money Can't Buy

My son, the marine, has had his share of ups and downs throughout his brief life. We adopted him when he was five years old, but during his first five years, he faced more trauma than some of us have to face in a lifetime.

His biological family abused him: they burned him with cigarettes, the didn't put him on solids for a long time....and kept him on milk...even though he had a very bad allergy toward that; he fell through a glass coffeetable and cut his eye brow severely and they didn't seek medical attention; his dad was murdered in a drug deal gone bad; he was adopted by a family that was dysfunctional; the wife abused him emotionally and physically; he suffered from psycho-social dwarfism -- that is because of all the emotional trauma he was faced with, he stopped growing -- by the time we got him him at age 4 he was the size of a two year old toddler; the adoptive family fell apart; and then he arrived in our home because we had gotten to know him at church. His adoptive mom was the church secretary.

We didn't want to see him in foster we stepped in.

So needless to say....after we adopted him, he suffered more than his share of psychological and emotional issues including depression and ADHD.

Not to mention that his new dad turned out to be QUEER!

My physician said that we should be patient and that by the time he was 25 and his cerebral cortex fully developed, things would get better.

At times I thought that I had made a mistake in adopting him......that my life would have been so much better. I questioned whether I would survive until he turned 25.

And, then, he joined the military -- the marines. He got in. He had his rough moments, but he began to excel. He moved up in rank. He learned to do as he was told. It was amazing.

Then came Iraq.

I worried.

I became afraid of doorbells.

I was so afraid that he would do something foolish because of his impulsivity.

But he returned....and he has grown so much. He's a marine for goodness sakes. He's young....he's buff......he's handsome........and thank God, he has matured!

I saw it a my birthday bash. He was helpful....not disrespectful. He talked with a quiet confident manner.

He spent 3 weeks with me before he had to return to check out of Le Jeuene in NC. We had a grand time. It was actually good having him home. No yelling..... Just

He called me from Lejeune yesterday just to say hello....and to see how I was doing. He gave me his schedule and told me he'd be back on Friday early afternoon. We're now making plans for me to go with him on a roadtrip across country to his new base in Texas.

Since that is where he was born....and it is the resting place of his biological father, I'm going with him to help find the grave.

During our conversation, the quiet, wellspoken young man told me something I had never heard him say. He said, "Dad, I know there were times I put you through hell....and I'm sorry. I love you though....and I know that you love me too. I'm looking forward to our time together, because I love spending time with youl."

Well, as you know by now, tears are my constant companion....always just below the surface.

They began to flow.

It can't be any better than this.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Monday Morning

It's Monday morning and I'm beginning to stir. I slept so good and now this is the beginning of a very hect tic week.

The heating and a/c guy is reutrning to repair the exhaust from my hot water tank that was detected to have problems last fall. I'm meeting with my attorney to have a will completed. This is the final touch to assure that my kids are taken care of and that Lovey does not try and funny business at my death, to try and usurp her control.

I'm having my gutters cleaned and the downspouts repaired from where they overflowed and shifted during all the heavy rains of last week. I had the equivalent of Niagara Falls cascading over my front door.

My son leaves this afternoon to return to Camp Lejeune. This is to do his final checkout before he moves across country to Texas. (I'm going with him for that...which should be quite fun.)

I've also spent a lot of time reflecting on the events of this weekend. I went to my niece-in-law's graduation party. I had a decent time...the food was great....and Lovey did not attend. Not sure why she wasn't there.... I didn't ask. I had just assumed that she would be there. After all, it is actually HER niece.

My niece's brother also graduated from college....but he graduated in December. The party was also for him too. However, thankfully, I brought my trusty checkbook and was able to give him a small monetary token and to give him a big bear hug to let him know just how proud I was of his accomplishments too.

Both of these kids seem like mine.

It has been so much fun watching them grow into fully productive adults. My niece is also pregnant with her first child and is expecting that delivery to be on or around July 3.

So, does that make the new child a "great niece?" (Yes, we all know it's a girl.)

Church was also good. We're getting a new associate pastor, who is male. That makes all the guys at my church happy. Perhaps this new guy will help grow the number of men attending my church. Right now there is an over abundance of a few more men wouldn't hurt.

Today I am feeling really encouraged by everything in my life. I can't believe just how far I have come. How I have matured. How I've left the "neediness" behind.....and the doubt and the fear.

At least for now, my life is without fear or questions.

Life is pretty good!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Something "Different"

Okay...I want to make you all a promise. I promise to never run anything pornographic on this site. I want this blog to remain as it always has been.....the story of a gay man coming to terms with his sexuality after the demise of his marriage.

I will only run a picture if it is tasteful....artistic......and shows nothing graphic or lewd.

Someone emailed the picture on this post to me today. It caught my attention. I just wish I could blow it up....and have it matted and framed for my bedroom. But I don't have the nerve.

I know it's pushing the envelope a little.....but the picture speaks to me....and I thought I'd share it.

Have a great Monday!

Surprises Along The Way

Did y'all recover yet from my Bobby Sherman centerfold?

Yeah, it was a stunner.....especially for a shy 12 year old in the summer of 1970. My hormones flooded my heart raced.......and my face burned from the sexual feelings I was feeling for the first time in my life. It nearly drove me crazy. But I worked to carry on.

Much like I do now.

I've had some interesting things to happen today.

First, and foremost, my son woke up early this morning and said that he was going with me to church. I was surprised, mainly because he's been a "little" phobic about being around other gay people. At my church he would be in a whole den of 'em.

But off to church we went. He had a good time. The gay guys were attracted to him....and he felt that. But I told him that it was about their sexuality and his didn't mean he was giving off a "gay vibe." The lesbians came up and kissed and hugged him. (Even the big butch burly ones were like silly putty around him....stammering and all..... They thanked him for his service to the country.)

We went to lunch with the church bunch. There I heard a lot of what has been bubbling inside my son for quite sometime. I overheard him saying to someone what a great dad I have been to him. He said that he knows he hasn't always been kind to me...but he finally realizes that I loved him all along. He also knew that I was the parent that cared enough to spend time with him....and the girls....and he loves me more than he can say.

I teared up.

Of course it doesn't take a whole lot to make me cry.

But to hear him say this meant more to me than I can possibly every say.

So, it has been an excellent day at Frank's house.

Later on, my minister friend wrote me and asked if we could chat a little after 6pm. So, I was finally able to free some time to talk to him. He was upbeat about his trip to NYC this weekend to see a musical with his family. It sounds like things went well. He sounded happy.

We talked for over 4 hours this time -- a record for us. Again we solved all the world's problems....and some of ours too. LOL

It's a little strange to have only been acquainted with someone for 7 days....and to have spent a total of 10 hours on the telephone...comparing stories......marriages.....ministries......dreams.....hopes...... It feels as if he has been my friend forever.....and he just so recently appeared.


Friday, May 16, 2008

Bobby Sherman

Well, I seached on the Internet for a copy of that very old centerfold that took my breath away when I was in puberty. Never could find it.... But I did find centerfold number 2 that I had forgotten about. So here it is. Still kind of breathtaking after all these years.

Bobby Sherman is so cool.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Does Anyone Remember 16 Magazine?

Confession time!

I was talking to my new minister friend last night and we started reminiscing about things we remembered from adolescence. I told him all about my junior high years and the fact that I willed myself to not show any physical response to having showers in physical education...over the summer of 1970 -- between the end of 6th grade and the start of 7th Grade (Jr. High).

I then confessed that I loved 16 Magazine that old fan magazine from the 1960s and early 70s that used to feature everything from Dark Shadows, Barnabas Collins to Bobby Sherman, David Cassidy and the Partridge Family. I had to laugh when the minister told me he had two Partridge Family LPs.

My favorite thing about the magazine was its wacky covers. It would have face pictures of all the current teen sensations (with a few famous hot adults for fun) that were glued to colorful drawn cartoon bodies doing outlandish things like surrounding the Easter Bunny who was in a top hat, or the issue of all of them swimming or in a rowboat 'manned" by an owl and a kitty cat; or surrounding a big St. Bernard.

These were eye-catching for sure.

One of the things I most remember was when the editor, Gloria Stavers introduced the Adonis Gallery. This is where she ran pictures of these celebrities shirtless. Since the magazine's target audience was teenage girls, this was alright....but there were a few teenage boys who read it to. I really enjoyed reading it from cover to cover, but when the Adonis Gallery column began running regularly, it certainly spiced up my nocturnal emissions and masturbatory fantasies!

For whatever reason, most of the teen idols didn't affect me "that" way. I tended to really get into the older men and had secret crushes on real people in my life. I enjoyed David Cassidy because of his affiliation with the Partridges....and of course Jonathan Frid of Dark Shadows fame....but it was just because I loved the series' so -- not because of any sexual attraction.

However, one person really got to me "that way." The thing that triggered it was a pinup of Bobby Sherman. For the uninitated, Bobby was a singer and his first gig was to be host of the old 1960s dance program SHINDIG. He then went on to act in the ABC-TV series, "Here Comes The Brides". From there he launched into a full-fledged recording career and he appeared in a spinoff of the Partridge Family called "Getting Together." Now I think he's an EMT in LA.

Anyway, in this particular issue of the magazine, he was the adonis centerfold. There he was: shirtless....lying on his belly, with a red background and a red covering on the floor where he was prone. The picture ended very far down on his waist (he must have had on underwear or hip huggers), it left me breathless wondering what he looked like naked. He had a muscular chest...perfect hair......and a doe like quality to his facial expression that drove me nuts. I kept that magazine forever...and drooled over that picture for months. I did a quick search on the Web for that picture, but couldn't find it.

That must have been at the peak of my hormonal period....

My conversation with the minister brought back all those old....and somewhat painful memories of the past and just how hard it was to keep my feelings of being different bottled up inside.

Can you imagine what it's like for someone who is 10, 11, 12 or 13, who is struggling with these feelings? You can't figure out why it's you. You feel like you're the only freak on the planet. You certainly can't talk to anyone about it. Most of all, it's's considered wrong.....something is wrong with me. No one talked about it.

At least now people are a whole lot more accepting.

I surfed the Web and found some scans of covers of 16 Magazine. If you remember it, enjoy!

Am I the only guy who read it?

Seeking Closeness With God!

Coming back from a retreat always leaves me wistful.

I seem to have this burning desire to grow closer to God and to live my life in a pleasing manner before him. But several things cause me to struggle: my religious background is not typical of those who have been involved in mainline denominations. So, I guess that is why I’m so comfortable being a part of the MCC of Northern Virginia. A vast majority of those people are like me. BUT…we do have those folks who have been to seminary that tend to be a bit condescending and rigid and controlling.

I was shocked to learn this firsthand this week.


Those kinds of people are in every church on the planet.

So, why am I surprised? I mean really?

The bad thing about it is that it really affected me in negative ways. I mean, here I am cruising a warp speed…enjoying the blessings of God when all of a sudden….BAM….this woman appeared in my life to be a damper.

We agreed that she would provide a written document for me to review concerning something……and it has been a number of days. She’s not bothered to get it to me yet. So, I’ve got a sprig of mistrust about her….and just a tad of resentment and anger. Just enough to make my life interesting at this church I love so deeply.

I hide my feelings well……and in this case, I’ve done a yeoman’s job. No one knows that anything is wrong or that FRANK is “bent out of shape.”

These are my own little foxes I must deal with.

I must be careful that they don’t spoil my vine.

Last evening I had aanother extended talk with my newest friend. He’s a minister that lives several states away and he is dealing with coming out, wanting to separate, and coming out to his kids. He has had a painful past and I really want to grab him and give him a bearhug to say, “It’s all right. You’re gonna do fine.”

But, due to distance, I can’t do that….so I need to keep him in my prayers.

He sounds very nice……with a gentle and quiet spirit. I’d love to hear him preach sometime.

He and I have so much in common…it’s spooky.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Two Days of Sunshine in a Row!

Today has dawned bright and beautiful. A brilliant blue sky and the glorious sun has finally appeared after all the damp, dreary and rainy days of the past couple of weeks. Here in the DC metropolitan area, many jurisdictions have been under drought conditions as the water table dipped to very low levels. But it seems now that we're on an upswing...finally.

After today, we're expecting more periods of heavy rain. Yikes.

Life continues to throw me curve balls.... I think I made someone angry last night...but it wasn't intended. I just defended my position on a matter rather vigorously rather than to just roll over and play dead. (I don't respond well to someone who is condescending and controlling.) So, we'll see.

Life goes on.

Western civilization has not stopped.

But this is a new place for me to be in. I actually defended ME.

When I think about it, if I don't defend me, who is going to?

Today is going to be a very busy day at the office. It is good to keep me occupied. This way I can be productive and to work at being the man that I should be.

I want so much to be a good possess those qualities in a person that makes me attractive to others.......because the ultimate goal is to be somebody's life partner -- a mighty fine one at that.

I think I'm a good catch....I just need to do better PR to get the word out!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Get That Boy Some Rest!

It's all catching up with me.

The excitement of the past few days including the week that my parents were here. It seems that I'm on a never ending treadmill of activity. This is okay actually because I don't like to be doing nothing.....or just sitting alone and feeling sorry for myself. I have a lot to be thankful for including the fact that I have been so very busy. It keeps the adrenaline flowing and my heart rate pumped. I'm just very, very excited about it all.

But tonight I am quite tired. I need to crawl in my big, soft bed and relax. Maybe I should curl up with a good book and begin reading. It's been quite sometime since I've read anything truly substantive. I do enjoy doing that and pondering the words of someone else.

I often dream of turning this blog into a book and perhaps broadening the audience a bit. I'm so amazed at the number of men who have been struggling with this issue and in some small way have found comfort in what accounts I have shared here. Also through my contacts within the gay community, I occasionally am placed into contact with those who are just starting their journey from married life into a single gay life.

Such was the case of one gentleman that telephoned me on Sunday evening. He's had quite a journey already. We are the same age, but there are many issues left to face as he makes his journey out of the closet and into the light of day. I honestly ache for him....because I know that the struggles he has had have been no picnic......and the journey ahead is going to be quite a painful one. When he says to his wife that he wants to separate and get a divorce....well...I think it is going to be a very tough struggle indeed. The numbness will set in and the fog will begin to swirl. He has children that do not that's another disclosure he must contemplate. Finally, his livelihood could be destroyed with one false word or action by his wife.

I can tell that things are weighing on his mind. But there is just so much that I can do. He's a few hundred miles away. I've just been sending him cyber hugs...because I am not able to give him the real thing.

I'm praying for him.....and that God will open all the right doors for him.

It is so neat how people come into our lives.

Maybe I can be of help to him or offer a shoulder to cry on.....or be a sounding board.

The Celebration Continues...

It has been an excellent day.

In the midst of all the hustle and bustle of my office life, my staff decided that they wanted to celebrate my 50th. So they gathered me up and whisked me away to one of my favorite restaurants and treated me to a nice lunch. They even surprised me with a visit from two former subordinates that retired a number of years ago!


It was so good to see all of them and to celebrate with the "gang".

I just can't believe all the fuss that folks have made over me....

I sort of feel like Sally Field when she won her Oscar: "You like me....your REALLY like me!"

This event is the end of the celebrations. You're probably sick of hearing all about everything concerning my birthday.... So, I promise to not write another word!

In the meantime I keep taking one step after another...remembering with each step how far I've come on my journey. As I walk, I wonder if I will ever reach the place where I have another's strong hand in mine.....

In the meantime I will keep walking.


The Lesson of Trees

A friend from my church recently told me of her philosophy of friendships. She likens them to the parts of a tree.

She says that some people appear in one's life much like the leaves of a tree. Some are there for a few seasons and then they fade away and disappear.

Other people come into your life and are like branches. Some are strong and sturdy and can bend with your changing needs.... Others can be brittle and if you burden them down with too much, they crack or snap off and fall away. One needs to choose friends wisely and to be sensitive of what you can share.

Another set of people come into your life who are strong as a tree trunk. They are strong, sturdy and visible. You know who those people are. You know you can count on them. They are there through thick and thin.....through all sorts of weather. They stand tall and majestic.

Finally, there is another set of people that are perhaps the most important people of all in your life. They are the roots. Roots are the unseen anchors in your life. Those people behind the scenes who provide stability, depth, strength, and nourishment to your entire support system. You are rarely aware of them....but they're there. Unseen and unassuming.... They don't call attention to themselves.... They're just always there.

Monday, May 12, 2008

To The Man of My Dreams

A person in another one of those groups that I'm a member of wrote the following on Mother's Day. I relate to what it says and thought I'd share it with you.


As the sun goes down I feel the day slipping through the fingers of time and reflect on its purpose and course. I know that it was a day spent and I know it was not the best. It did not have you in it and it did not have love. It may have been necessary and it may have been compelled, but it left me empty, wanting, and longing.

I dream of you in my days, to fill them full with purpose and fulfillment. I dream of nights that never end, yet speed so quickly and are gone. Nights with naked bodies hard and soft and aromatic and sensual. Bodies filled up with love and happiness. Bodies used and content and sufficient for their need.

I dream of the face of God made manifest in your eyes and heart and soul. Where I can go to know who I am and rejoice in the beauty and perfection and absolute acceptance and love. I dream of days without end where I can find you in them, beginning and end, to make each day complete. To make my soul complete. Then what happens within the times you're not possessed are okay and will not pull me down or make me regret.

My dream man, you need me to take care of you! I need you to take care of me!

How I wish I were there with you today! Oh to spend this night with you my love! How my heart and soul and body aches for that! You, mine...all mine! And I could make love to you as much as I want! I could make love to you with my heart and soul! I could make love to you so that the earth would stop in wonder at such love! My soul could sing such glorious songs! I need you so much! I miss you so much! It hurts in my hands and heart for the need of you! I need you so badly I wonder if I can breath for the need weighs down so heavy!

I've tried so hard to be strong and patient, and I have done well, have I not?

But sometimes when the day is long like today, my strength fails me and then I implode upon my need and it consumes me!

And there after all...what is left and shining in the ash? My love for love for oh man of my dreams! My love image of you rises up from the ash like a phoenix new and reborn and full of power to save. My man is there with big strong arms and so much love and so much power to change my world and make my dreams come true! And he spreads his wonderful phoenix wings and soars into a perfect colored sunset sky and takes me with him!


I'm not alone in my dreams and longings.

The Story of the Crystal Cat

As we prepared for the beginning of the retreat, we were instructed to bring a personal item that represented our lives. So, I decided to take an item from my office.

At the office, I have a piece of handblown crystal that has been there for approximately 17 years. It had caught my eye on the shelf, and I thought it would be a rather unique piece of art for my office.

It was made by an artisan at a glass plant in my home state of West Virginia that no longer exists. It was purchased by my dear Aunt Opal who passed away 13 years ago.

This cat represents my life in so many ways.

1. It has been said that cats have nine lives. I feel that I'm beginning a new life at the age of 50.
2. The cat was made in West Virginia. I was made in West Virginia.
3. The cat is made of clear crystal and is fairly transparent. If you hold him up to a bright light source, the resulting reflection would be a vast multi-colored rainbow. Like him, I'm rather transparent -- what you see is what you get. I feel though, that at the age of 50, I'm only just now allowing my rainbow shine fully.

That little cat has faithfully stood watch over my desk for the past 17 years. I haven't thought a lot about him. He just became a part of my office. But he still has stood watch through the many ups and downs in my life. He's been there through the many deaths of significant people in my life.

It was there as my three children grew and finally left the nest and went their own way.

It was there as my marriage faltered and ultimately crumbled and dissolved.

It's still here as I rise from the ashes and am now on the brink of new things.

I've learned a lot as I've pondered the lessons of the crystal cat.

I'm still learning.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Better Late Than Never!

I returned safely from my weekend spiritual retreat.

Once more I am stunned at the fact that I have gained so much by a very few short days spent focused on my spirit....and where that I am headed. This year we met in small groups for the majority of the weekend. I got a chance to really share some things deep from within and it helped me to be able to open up. Afterwards I felt so very close to my group mates.

I'm still amazed at the fact that even though I am being authentic in who I am while attending this retreat, these people still love me and accept me for who I am. They seem to love me unconditionally which means so very much to me. I can't begin to describe it here.

I still struggle with loneliness.....and the desire to have a boyfriend/partner/husband. The retreat helped me to realize that I may very well spend the rest of my days alone. Which I guess is okay.....but God knows that I pray this won't happen. I have so much love to give to someone. I don't want that to ever shrivel up and to die.

This weekend was busy from a family point of view too. My mother turned 74 on Friday. I sent her two dozen mixed, long stem roses -- one dozen for Mother's Day and one dozen for her birthday. I also heard from my daughter in Nashville who has spent the majority of this day trying to reach her mother to wish her a Happy Mother's Day....and unable to reach her. My son just came in for the evening and he announced the same problem.

I guess Lovey is keeping busy......with all her ministry stuff. I think she should make herself available to her children on such important days.....regardless of what is going on..... But obviously she hasn't....

(Then she wonders why she doesn't have a close relationship with the kids.)

I have no dogs in this I will leave it all alone.

It is pouring rain outside.....and I am having leaks in my bathroom through the ceiling vent. I'll call this week for repairs.

But I'm so thankful to be home.

Pray for me.

Friday, May 09, 2008

As Promised: Pictures from the Bash!

Here are the pictures from my birthday celebration. I'm still a bit in shock by it all. It was totally awesome. The first picture is of all my birthday cards that I've received in the mail...not counting the email greetings. Considering a year ago I felt alone...and isolated.....that little resolution back at the beginning of 2007 certainly worked! (I said that one of the things I wanted to do was to expand my network of friends. I'm living proof that someone shy can make really great friends.)

I'll be away for the next few days at a church retreat. I'll post sometime on Sunday. Have a safe and happy weekend.

Thursday, May 08, 2008


Things have been quite wacky at my house this entire week. My parents arrived by train from their home in West Virginia last Wednesday. I took both Thursday and Friday off because Thursday was my big day, and Friday I had to travel to the airport to pick up #2. That evening, my son the Marine, arrived and Saturday was the BIG day of my birthday bash. And what a day it was!

I had over 40 people come to my house and express their best wishes for a Happy 50th! They all took their time and enjoyed being with each other. My parents got to meet all my friends who came and got to know them. They, in turn, got to know my family and meet my son.

The party began at 1:00 p.m., and the last guests left my house around 7:30 in the evening. It was a long and exhausting day, but it left me feeling pleased with myself. I could actually see just how far I had come. In the midst of all the rubble and debris I found myself in following the separation and divorce from Lovey, I had no friends. It was a lonely and sad feeling that I never wish to repeat ever again.

What a difference!

As a birthday present to myself, I had some professional landscaping done in the front of my house and in the back. I powerwashed my patio. Cleaned off the deck. Scrubbed the patio furniture. Cleaned the inside of my house from stem to stern. Cleaned the hardwood floors. Shampooed carpets. Hung pictures. Vacuumed. Everything looked great!

I’m still getting feedback from my guests who are calling to thank me for being a warm and gracious host and for inviting them.

Lovey showed up with her mother and aunt. All my friends told me afterwards that she was a little rude towards them….in one case she totally turned her back on one person and walked away, mid-conversation. As I mingled with the crowds in my den, dining room, kitchen and deck and patio areas (the day was perfect weather), I could see that Lovey was sitting alone in my living room! Apparently, much was on her mind.

Thankfully, it was not my job to figure out her problem.

She returned on Sunday afternoon to spend a little time with #2 before she caught her flight back to Nashville. When Lovey left, mother said that she had a very forlorn look about her and her body language was less than victorious. (I was too busy helping #2 pack and get ready to leave to notice that she had even left.)

So, later on today I plan to run a post of pictures so that you can see what’s been happening at my house….and to let you get a sense of the party.

I’m glad that I hosted my party. It was a great day!

Friday, May 02, 2008

A Wonderful Day

So far, turning 50 has been outstanding and perhaps the highlight of my life thus far.

I have had a simply delightful day with my parents. We've talked.....we've reflected......we've laughed......and we have been so thankful for the blessings that I'm now experiencing.

The age of 50 is a milestone...and I really look forward to the next 50 years. Hopefully by that time I will have found a partner -- GAWD I hope he is gorgeous...LOL. Seriously, I'm expecting some really neat things to happen. I'm looking forward to see what my kids do with their lives....and to see when their mates come into their lives. (As an aside...I know I got grief from some of you because of my comments about Mr. Bodybuilder...and how he left my daughter's life. However, I'm proud to report that he and #2 have patched things up...and they are chugging back down the path of dating.....and love......and the butterflies in the stomach.....and the fear of figuring out just how far they want things to go.....blah....blah. I still feel that he is "the one" for her. I'm not telling her this. I telling each of you this because I want to, at some point, be able to reach to this posting and point to it and say, "See, I knew this all along!" We'll see.)

Saturday is the BIG celebration for my birthday. I'm having 54 people in. Isn't that great? Especially when you consider that during the awful period of separation and divorce, I felt I had no friends.

I am so thankful for being at the place I now am. It's been a long time coming.

Yes, my life is coming together nicely.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Happy Birthday Frank!

Well, the big day has finally arrived and yours truly can now say, "I'm as old as dirt!"

Aw, not really. I understand that these days 50 is considered the new 30.

So, here I am starting the next half of my life. I pray that it is gonna be much more fun than the first half was. Oh, there were some great times durin the first 50, but there was a lot of useless drama, sadness, and heartache. But that was then, this is now.

My parents arrived all safe and sound yesterday evening. I then took them to dinner at Cllyde's....a super nice restaurant not far from where I live. They said they would have enjoyed Wendy's, but I wanted to do something nicer for them. So we went to the restaurant of my choice, and they seemed to enjoy it.

Dad was just a bit cantankerous....but I gently kept things positive...and he got okay.

I worry about him.

So, here I am....officially 50 years old!

What's next?