The best week

Here I am again, ending another year.

I tend to spend about a month anticipating the last week of the year, preparing for it, building it up. Then it hits, with ridiculous excitement and an abundance of love, I am overwhelmed and overjoyed – Christmas, Dustin’s birthday, our anniversary, New Year’s Eve – all crammed into one short week. And just as quickly as it arrives, it passes. The new year begins, and I am left thinking, “Now what?”

The truth is that I despise the beginning of the year. I realize that many see it as an opportunity for a fresh start and all that nonsense, but I don’t. One can create a new beginning at any point, not just January. I instead see the first few months of the year as underwhelming in comparison to December, bleak and desolate by cause of the dreary weather, and seemingly never ending as I await all that is wonderful about springtime (blooming flowers, longer days, warmer weather, baseball, etc, etc…).

It just seems as though there is nothing for me to be excited about throughout January and February.

I suppose I could set new goals for myself, not necessarily as resolutions, but because I recently met my marathon goal and need something else to keep me busy. Just last week I was sitting outside eating lunch with my coworker (friend, really) when I noted that my one-year anniversary of working at ADC was coming up. This led us to reflect on the year that has passed, all we have achieved, what we would have liked to achieve, and what we see ourselves striving for in the upcoming year. That’s a lie. He talked about his planned endeavors, lofty and inspiring they be. Me? I got nothing.

What to do, what to do.

Study and refresh my memory enough to retake national boards and finally get my license? I allowed my registration to expire years ago because I was broke and unsure about what I wanted to do with myself. But now may be the time to smarten up and get it done. I always yearn to be a more creative person. Perhaps I could take up art journaling, combining that with writing, drawing, photography, and calligraphy? Health and fitness-wise, how do I top running a marathon?! Improve on my time? Get as close to a Boston-esque pace as I can? Train for a duathlon perhaps? I’d have to get a proper bike for that… Yikes. I should probably stick to running and only cycle for funsies.

Meh, I will figure it out. It took half a year to decide to run Dallas, after all. We shall see.

For the present moment, I will continue to focus on this week and all the celebrating left to do. My bestie also happens to be back from Colorado and I am anxious to see her and play catch-up. I am hoping that we can reunite tomorrow.

Today has been somewhat uneventful, which is probably a good thing. Last night, my fella went out with friends while I stayed home for a quiet night in. I made myself dinner, watched an HBO documentary, did some light cleaning, and simply relaxed (yes, cleaning is relaxing to me because catharsis, you know?). I went to bed a little past midnight – the fella and I had taken naps together in the afternoon so I was not terribly tired – and looked forward to an early start to the following day.

It was not to be.

According to my phone’s log, I took a call from the fella at 2:22 am this morning. He asked me to help him – he was outside, not far from our apartment, and had apparently taken a nasty spill. There is a pond in the center of our complex, below what I consider ground level (i.e. the level upon which the apartment buildings are standing). A path leads from the leasing office, where Dustin’s Uber driver dropped him off (hooray for him being responsible and not driving, right?), to the lot in front of our building. The path is actually part of a retaining wall and along it is a five to six-foot vertical drop down to the pond’s level. Not very safe for lonely, inebriated men trying to get home in the pitch black night. One misstep over the ledge and down you go…

Poor fella.

When I reached him, he was lying on his back and moaning in pain. It took all I had in me to help him up and start making our way home. He told me his right ankle was too painful and that he could not bear weight on it so I had him throw his right arm around me and bore the weight for him. What a task!

I cannot lie, I was extremely annoyed. I had been awakened from my sleep to deal with drunkenness. Of course, he was belligerent, too! Once inside our place, he immediately allowed himself to fall to the floor, which further infuriated me because I knew I would have to do the work to get him up all over again. I wanted to scream at him to get his shit together and get himself to our bed.

Oh, but his face was one as full of sorrow as it was of pain. How many times has he dealt with my own inebriated shenanigans? And is this not our week? The week we celebrate finally meeting and starting our relationship? Our relationship that has been through so much turbulence in its nearly six-year length, yet still manages to work somehow and generate happiness. We may not be married (not complaining, just stating the fact), but in sickness and in health, yes?

I helped him to bed, removed his shoes, and asked if he had hit his head. He was ranting about the night he had, so I chose not to bother with trying to get an answer out of him and instead checked his head for injury myself. I got a little peace of mind from not finding any evidence of wounds and decided that it was safe for him to sleep. After repeated apologies to me, he finally succumbed and was silent.

This morning, I walked to the store to buy him a Naked Juice to help with his hangover and Advil to help with his injury. It was not his ankle that was hurt – it was his foot. That thing is so swollen it looks like Bobby’s feet from Bobby’s WorldA short while ago, I taped it up to hopefully get the inflammation to subside. [sigh]

He is so lucky I love him.

But I am also lucky to have him.

Hmm. Suddenly, I am more excited to celebrate him and celebrate us. I think we’re gonna make it, that guy and me. The uncertainty that reigned over me this year is finally waning and I find myself being reminded of all the reasons I fell for him in the first place. He… He has been more mindful, I must say. I needed that. It has made all the difference and I feel the next phase of our romance making its welcome debut.

Yes, I needed that.

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Half-anniversary

Tomorrow, the boyfriend and I will complete yet another six months together. Sixty-six months altogether. A total of 2,008 days. Five and a half years. But who’s counting anyway?

This year has actually been a bit rough on us as a couple. Things have felt… “off”. There has been a sort of disconnect or lack of chemistry, I have felt an unwelcome distance between us, and we have argued over trivial things. [sigh] That’s all normal in long-term relationships. The honeymoon phase ends and real life bitchslaps hard enough to cause the butterflies to be forcefully expelled from your stomach. It’s what was to be expected, is it not? I see other couples go through this and much worse. It’s not so bad with us, right? These are all things I keep telling and asking myself. Clearly I need further convincing.

Ugghhhh.

Should I hold my relationship to a higher standard? That might be ridiculous and unreasonable. But I don’t want to settle either. Can’t things be better? Why aren’t things better? We have talked and talked and talked numerous times this year. All very honest and open conversations. We should be better. Man, oh, man. Relationships are work.

That’s the thing, though. We are both willing to work. We are not willing to give up on us. We love one another. My goodness, I am certain that he would have ditched me a LONG time ago if he didn’t love me! I am something else!

So tomorrow… tomorrow is another milestone for us. And while we may not make a big celebration out of it, I will be happy. I will be proud of us. I will be thankful for him and for what we have together. I will even give him a small gift… Because I am a goober.

Poor guy is in love with a goober. 🙂

Out with the old, in with the new!

What a week. From being told that I was disrespectful, being wrongfully accused of something I did not do, and having my patience tried time and time again, to spending an absolutely wonderful holiday with my little family of strays, finishing up a job, and beginning to celebrate a new year.

The aforementioned negative things are not worth going into detail about because they will only stir up the harsh emotions I felt while experiencing them. Again, not worth it. Instead, I’ll write about the lovely times, times I have shared with this crazy man I am still crazy about.

I worked Christmas Eve and didn’t arrive home until after 8 p.m. To my delight, Dustin had a candlelight dinner set for us in our living room, with plates, napkins, and drinks all in place. Granted, the meal consisted of delivery pizza, but that it so “us”! It was perfect and thoughtful and made my heart melt. We then waited until midnight, as has been tradition in my family, to open presents. Dustin even got a card from Smartie! Adorbs!

I had to go back to work yesterday, for what ended up being my last day there. Goodbyes suck, even though there weren’t many people there for me to say goodbye to. I think several were still out for the holiday, others were out sick, and some were just not scheduled to work. Ah, well. I will see them again, I am sure. I will not be seeing “my” patients again, though. That part is particularly rough, but I keep in mind that I will be moving on to help other critters and their families so it’s okay.

Before doing so, however (starting my new job, that is), I have over a week off to do whatever I’d like! It is already off to a good start since Dustin and I celebrated our anniversary early by taking the train downtown for lunch and to see the stage production of one our favorite movies, Once. Oh, it was so wonderful! Dustin bought amazing seats, the production was very well done, and the music! Oh, the music! I cried three times because I was so overwhelmed by how beautiful it all was. Ugh. Happy anniversary indeed. Tomorrow, we’ll be celebrating his birthday and later this week, celebrating a new calendar year.

What an exciting time. Dustin will be beginning another year of life, we will begin a new year as a couple, and I will be starting a new job. I have a feeling that 2015 is going to be a good one!

A post about warmth and kindness

I feel that when I wear a sweater, jacket, or coat that belongs to someone I love, there is an added warmth to it. I felt this way as a child, when I would wear my parents’ sweatshirts. I felt it even more when I was in college, became homesick, and again, would dress myself in sweaters and jackets belonging to my Mom, which I would not-so-subtly snatch during my visits home. Now, it’s my boyfriend’s hoodies that do the trick. Walking my dog in the bitter cold is more bearable when I am snug in Dustin’s aroma.

There is much that I want to share and put in words, but now is not the time. I will share a little story from the previous weekend, though.

As some of you may or may not know, I do not own a car. I hate cars. I appreciate that they get me places and all, but I do not want to own one nor drive one. I rely on public transportation, my legs, and carpooling to get about. I have done so my entire adult life, and while not always convenient, I have made it work. This also keeps the environmentalist in me content.

Dustin does own a car, but it has been acting up for a few weeks and so over the weekend, I decided to walk to Target for some necessities since we couldn’t take that darn vehicle. The store is only about a mile away from our place, which is a short distance for someone who enjoys walking and running as much as I do. Surprisingly, though, Dustin decided to join me and off we went, hand in hand, chit chatting, discussing what we needed to buy, and enjoying the weather.

After getting the things we needed, we ended up looking at trees, of course, and since they were half off, we decided to look for one to put up at our place. How could we resist? We found one that we both really liked at a pretty cheap price. It was the last one so we bought it, even though we realized we would have to carry it back home.

We were likely less than a quarter of the way back, Dustin carrying the huge tree while I carried bags full of everything else we had purchased, when we noticed a car pull over ahead of us. A man stepped out of the driver’s seat and motioned for us to get in. With shock and gratitude, we accepted the offer, put the tree and bags in the car, and climbed in as well. The driver was an older gentleman and once in the car, we met his wife, a sweet old lady who paused when I told her my name because she loved it so much.

Obviously, the ride was short because we really weren’t too far away, at least not by car. When walking with bags and a six-foot tree, sure, it seems pretty far. I can’t remember their names because the entire time we were in the car, both kept talking over one another. The man talked to Dustin while the lady talked to me. It was hard to listen! Once they had dropped us off, they wished as a happy Thanksgiving and went about their day. What a happy and sweet couple!

I hope that Dustin and I grow old together and can some day do something sweet for a struggling young couple as well. Not that Dustin and I are in dire need or anything, but we did lack a car! My bigger hope, though, is that we can pay it forward sometime sooner rather than later.

Be kind to one another, y’all. This world needs more kindness.

LOLs

Today, I have laughed and laughed. Laughter is the best medicine, especially when you share it with others. It also warms you up, agreed? It is so nice to be surrounded by people who share my sense of humor. People who can laugh with me make the best friends. I can laugh with Dustin all day, which is probably one of the reasons why our relationship works. I love that guy.

All I want to do is laugh. If you make my laugh, I will love you. If I can make you laugh, I will be happy.

Dustin loves Daisy

We say the words to each other so often, multiple times a day. I love you. We don’t say them so much that they have lost their value, though. I know that when we both say them, we both mean them. Actions speak louder than words, however, and as much as I enjoy hearing him express that sentiment in spoken word, the little things he does just floor me.

On Friday, I overslept and was so late that walking Canelo before work was a no-go. Dustin heard me wake up in a panic and without hesitation, let me know that I did not have to worry. He promised to take my sweet boy out for me, even though that meant him having to chnage up his morning routine. Thank. goodness.

Yesterday, I convinced him to go to the Texas A&M football game with me. Note: the Texas Aggies are not his team. His team is from Austin. They call themselves the Texas Longhorns. Going to the game with me meant not watching his own team and giving up a day of gaming. Not only did he go, but he even did Saw Varsity’s Horns Off with me. That’s the part of the game when all Aggies link arms and legs, sway together, and loudly sing about sawing the longhorns off. Here’s a video example of it. This is what I forced Dustin to do:

It’s not exactly something a Longhorn fan would be fond of listening to, let alone participate in. He must really love me.

Today, I woke up hungry, but did some busywork before really thinking about eating. By the time that work was done, I was READY to eat and on the verge of becoming hangry. I thought I had some vegan enchiladas in the fridge, but as it turned out, they all had cheese in them and thus, belonged to Dustin. Not being in the mood for cooking, I ordered Thai delivery. My food arrived about thirty minutes later and I gladly indulged in it. As I was eating, Dustin got up to warm up his enchiladas.

“Did me eating make you hungry?” I asked.

“I was already hungry, but I knew you were hungry and didn’t want to eat before you did.”

He’s so polite and sweet. This man knows how awful I become when I am hungry and so, he waited. He’s not only polite and sweet, he’s selfless! I can’t help but think of those questionnaires that ask women to rank the qualities they want in a man. The choices are always the same old adjectives: intelligent, funny, passionate, attractive, rich, and so on. Well, my favorite attribute in Dustin is his selflessness.

He thinks about me, takes my feelings into consideration, tiptoes around me at times (I know that’s awful and I wish he didn’t feel the need to do that) all because he loves me. Ugh. I still adore every time he says I love you to me, but the seemingly trivial things he does are all the convincing I need to try to keep this fella around forever.

I do his laundry!

Pain and love

Last night, I fell asleep on the couch while watching tv. Dustin was out walking Canelo Dog. I woke up this morning covered by a blanket, a pillow underneath my head, and the cold pack that was on my knee when I fell asleep was gone. That Dustin guy. Is he a sweetheart or what?

My knee has not really gotten much better these last few days and now I’m starting to worry. After my first doctor visit, yeah, it improved. The swelling went down and it did not hurt as much. Since then, though? I feel that it is about the same. It’s probably my own damn fault for doing more than I should. Walking too much at work, not using my crutches at all times, not cold packing it enough.

I cannot wait to see the physical therapist. According to their website, the goal of physical therapy is to help the patient “return to activities that have become difficult or impossible due to injury” and the “elimination or reduction of pain related to the areas of the body affected”. Please get me back to running, walking dogs, and being able to do my job. Please take the pain away. I have such high hopes for this appointment. Please don’t be a disappointment.

Returning to Dustin, he has been anything but a disappointment throughout this. He has walked my dog, allows me to sit on my ass while he brings things to me, he constantly asks how I am feeling, and reminds me not to do more than I should.

A month ago, he and I had a huge fight that I never wrote about. Really, any fight between us is “huge” because we never fight. This one seemed especially epic because I ended up sleeping on the couch that night and thought I would be moving out. It was bad. We said some not-so-nice things to one another, which we both meant, but probably could have expressed more tactfully if it had been a more civil conversation. That’s our problem: we don’t express our problems and instead let our feelings and annoyances build up until we both erupt. Thank goodness we are both rational and thank goodness we both love each other.

He has expressed that love thoroughly and I do not know that he knows how much I appreciate it. What more can I do?