Sunday, July 24, 2016

The Stains that Fade

Adrianna came over to do a henna piece on me.  It's a Phoenix.  There's no doubt that I have risen from the ashes.  Last year at this time I could feel my insides shaking.  My stomache muscles were tense at all times.  My shoulders hunched forward in a protective manner.  Deep breaths were an act of courage.  I cried in class during the chest opening yoga poses, because they reminded me of how much healing I would have to do and the vulnerability necessary to do so.

Here I am sulking in my "heartache".  Wanting what does not exist, feeling an ache of loss in my chest... A chest that can fully expand, a rib cage that revels in deep breaths. I got so wrapped up in these infrequent moments, I feel as if I had been feeling this way the whole time.  Then I glance at my Phoenix and realize how transient it all is; How pain is relative and even in the worst time of betrayal and heartbreak it has it's own mortality.  

I laugh at my melodramatic emotional thought processes.  Then I take a good look at my coping mechanisms.  There's a bit of cringing.  There's a bit of head shaking.  There's a soft smile that spreads across my face. People are my coping mechanisms.  I love people.  I love what they say and do.  I like seeing them be silly, I like seeing them bloom when I focus on them with my heart.  I see a person and I think: Hey, I like you.  Let's have a good time, even if just for a few moments. 
I pass a stranger with a cool t-shirt while crossing the street and I give them a high five.  We connect and light up for that moment and it is beautiful.

Though right now, don't think I am capable of the same connection with someone as I felt (feel?) with my ex...  I have this ingrained belief that you can't feel romantically about two people the same way  at the same time.  There's this deep shame about that, it seems to block my ability to connect with another person of the opposite sex in the same way. 
Like: sorry, I can't really like you or have a meaningful sexual experience with you because I still have feelings for my ex.  
Is it my feelings for my ex (knowing full well we can't be together) really what is stopping me? Or is it just self-inflicted guilt and shame?  I tell myself that I'm a thirty five year old single woman who wants and deserves a decent sex life and to go out there and get it.  Who knows? I may even find a meaningful connection along the way... I tell myself it's societal conditioning that stops me.  But I am lying. 

When another man touches me I remember him touching me and the emotional contrast between the two... it hurts. It's as simple as that.  There's no patriarchal conditioning to blame, no complex slut shaming cultural bullshit.  Being with someone else makes me miss him more. 

My ovaries tell me to just keep trying new guys and it will get emotionally easier each time. 
My heart... she flashes a glimpse of that woman I met in front of mac's and tells me not to fuck that up.
And a voice, a voice that has been getting quieter as each day passes says to me: He might want to get back together... don't ruin that just because you want to get laid.  I compassionately explain why that is not going to happen, it can be hard being compassionate with the vulnerable part of myself.  The part I'd rather just call foolish and dismiss as ridiculous.  How embarrassing that a part of me is putting itself out there to be rejected... again.

This crazy world of dating and relationships, it takes it's toll on a woman who scares as easily as she falls in love.