December 18, 2009


There is something almost magical about snow. If you awaken to a blanket of glistening white, the world seems pure and new. All the grime and muck of reality is hidden, out of sight and out of mind. Anything is possible because no paths have been laid out before you. You can act like a child, sticking your tongue out to catch a snowflake and flopping onto the ground to make an angel. You forget that your feet are numb and your nose is running because the moment is too precious to waste. It is only later when you're sipping cocoa and admiring winter through a window do you realize how rosy your cheeks really are. [Then again, I've always been a sucker for a beautiful snowfall.]

December 17, 2009

Jingle all the way to Christmas

I can't believe that Christmas is less than 10 days away! Where has the time gone? Sheesh! I bet some of my confusion has to do with the green grass and flying insects outside my window. I associate Christmas with snow, ice, and warm outerwear, but all of that is moot in this part of the country.

On the plus side, I was done with my holiday shopping by the start of December, so I've been spending the month leisurely writing out cards and mailing out gifts. I also enjoy watching everyone else frantically run around. Apparently the "it gift" this year is a neon-colored motorized hamster that moves through plastic tubes and runs in a plastic wheel. It seems to me that parents should just buy their kids the actual pet, which is way more entertaining to watch, than a battery-powered version. And parents can't argue that the fake hamsters are safer than the actual mammals because the Zhu Zhu pets are being recalled for unsafe levels of heavy metals!

The holidays sure are amusing!

November 24, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

For this Thanksgiving, I decided to mimic a couple of the blogs I follow by writing out a list of what I'm thankful for.  So here it is, in no particular order:

1) my family, who may not understand what I'm still doing in school, but support me anyway
2) my friends, who do not judge me and are always willing to lend an ear or a shoulder
3) my cat, who keeps me laughing and provides bedtime snuggle-time
4) individuals who remind me that science is a team effort
5) Virginia weather
6) seasonal produce like tangerines
7) Christmas music, decorations, coffee (at Starbucks) and shopping
8) not being homeless
9) hope, ambition, and dreams
10) Sephora
11) the free literature available from the public library
12) starlit skies
13) the belief that 'world peace' is attainable

November 21, 2009

Dude, I'm never going to sleep with you.

One of my male friends has a crush on me. It's so painfully obvious that it takes all my restraint to not blurt out something inappropriate. [Like "Dude, I'm never going to sleep with you so give up!"] That knowledge, coupled with his personality, makes me feel like I have to censor myself -- what I say, the amount of emotion in my comments, etc. I can't be the brutally honest [true] version of myself, and, sometimes, it is exhausting to engage in conversations with him. Because I'm aware of the crush he has on me, I am the one with all the power in our friendship. If I mention a TV series I find interesting, he'll start watching it. But I won't reciprocate by watching something just because he does. I want to tell him that constant fawning and placating won't change my lack of attraction, but at the same time, I don't want to acknowledge [out loud] that that is what is happening. I keep hoping that if I ignore it and am hyper-vigilant about stressing how he's my friend, that the crush will fade away. So here's to that ....

November 12, 2009

My personal hell

It's been 4 months since the breakup, yet, sometimes, it doesn't feel like a day has gone by. I know that healing it a time-sensitive process and that keeping busy is essential. But I'm stuck. I have to see him every weekday. Do you know what that's like? Seeing the person you loved more than anything in the world, and being reminded every time you see him that you're no longer together? Because he wanted to be free of obligation. Because he thought you'd be better of alone. Do you know what it's like to have your whole support system ripped away from you? To live in an area hundreds (if not thousands) of miles away from your friends? To go out of your way to try to meet new people, only to have these strangers look at you like you're less than they are? Do you know what it's like to desperately love and absolutely hate someone all at the same time? If I act like everything is fine, then I'm in denial about the whole situation -- that we aren't even friends anymore. If I act like a victim or a scorned lover, then I lose the only social interaction I have in a day (i.e. with co-workers) and have to face all the painful memories in an even more isolated mindset. Welcome to my personal hell.  

CMA performance

This was AWESOME!!

November 09, 2009

Non Sequitur

Letter to Republicans/Conservatives/Libertarians

You say you are against universal healthcare because it isn't constitutional. Yet you fail to notice that "general welfare" amenities like emergency services, infrastructure and public education are government run. You say you are against universal healthcare because it is socialized medicine. Yet you fail to notice the U.S. already has socialized medicine -- Medicare. You say you are against universal healthcare because it is unnecessary. Yet you omit preventative care and treatments in your assessment of the services available to the uninsured. You say you are against universal healthcare because the majority of those polled were satisfied with the current system. Yet you fail to clarify what proportion of those surveyed were without health insurance. You say you are against universal healthcare because it will bankrupt the country. Yet you forget the $915 billion we've spent (so far!) on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. You say you are against universal healthcare because you don't want the government telling you what to do with/to your own body. Yet your political affiliation has been telling women what to do with their bodies and reproductive health for generations. You say you are against universal healthcare because you are protecting liberty. Yet you restrict the 'quality or state of being free' to white Christian men. You say you are against universal healthcare because it is the antithesis of capitalism and people will inherently do what is best for all. Yet you fail to realize how contradictory that statement is.

[It is so frustrating to have a discussion with you about this topic because you rely on smoke and mirrors. If I argued for universal healthcare by citing the Bible and using vague patriotic terms like freedom and liberty, then I too would be untouchable.]

November 08, 2009

Leisure activity

So lately I've been reading Richard Dawkins' book "The God Delusion". This was inspired by an article in The Washington Post, either about this book or about his latest publication -- I can't remember. I'm finding it an interesting, albeit long-winded, read. Dawkins likes to reiterate that religious individuals have no proof of God, yet those same people feel science doesn't have enough evidence to disprove the existence or influence of God.

Personally, I feel it is a whole lot more believable that life is the way it is due to evolution -- that chronological accumulation of random mutations and natural selection -- than due to God deciding it should be so. [Who created God anyway?] What positive influence does religion have in inspiring us to be curious and seek out answers to life's questions? As geneticist Jerry Coyne says: "Why is God considered an explanation for anything? It's not -- it's a failure to explain, a shrug of the shoulders, an 'I dunno' dressed up in spirituality and ritual. If someone credits something to God, generally what it means is that they haven't a clue...."

I feel that people use religion, especially God, as a scapegoat. Why were you born with that incurable genetic disease? Because God made you that way. Why is your son a homosexual? Because God is testing your faith. Etc. It is easier to blame someone else, then to acknowledge (1) you don't know, (2) chance and/or probability, or (3) that you are responsible. I am especially concerned by those religious individuals who believe that misfortune is brought upon by refusing to "live by the divine law of life". What incentive do people have to lead a pious and virtuous life as a path to heaven, when prisoners who torture and kill innocent people, can be forgiven and saved? It just doesn't add up.

November 05, 2009

And why the country music?

Those of you who know me may be surprised by all the country music that has invaded my blog. I know, I know. I was always the person complaining about the rednecks and the honky-tonk songs. But as I've gotten wiser ... err, older ... I've become bothered by the trendy pop/rock music. I don't want to listen to base heavy songs about partying, drinking, hot scantly-clad women, sex, or evading the police. I want to believe that there's more to human relationships than selfishness and instant gratification. I want to believe in love! I want to believe that true love stays with a person, and that that love can provide both pain and comfort, regret and hope. Hence the country music. And it isn't so bad, once you get past the manure on the boots.


I believe science has some fundamental flaws. Why else would an instrument of progress continue to perpetuate archaic practices like academic hazing? I understand some professors believe in the "value" of preliminary exams -- that science requires lifelong learning. Other professors may believe the experience helps you to think on your feet. But if preliminary exams were so crucial to success, why aren't they standardized? The Bar Exam is. The Medical Licensing Exam is. And while every doctoral student is working on one specific aspect of one specific project, the degree is the same for all members of the same department. So why are the preliminary exams so variable? Why is one student put through hell and another has the faculty planning a celebration before the exam is over? Scientists are suppose to be hyper-aware of bias and make every attempt to minimize it. I'm starting to worry that science is more of a "do-what-I-say-not-what-I-do" type of discipline. How else can I justify the demoralization of students as a means to measure progress in the program?

November 02, 2009


I'm so excited that Pixar's "UP" is coming out soon! Heehee!! My favorite character is Dug the dog.

November 01, 2009

Song of my soul

"Bring Me Down" by Miranda Lambert

Sweet like a kiss sharp like a razor blade
I find you when I' m close to the bottom
You cant appreciate the time it takes
To kick a love I always knew was kind of wrong
And as I'm putting out the flame
Somebody brings up your name

Oh oh oh oh
Baby baby baby bring me down
I want to be right where you are
Baby baby baby bring me down
You can look me in the eye and break my heart
Break my heart

Six AM unruffled pillow
Laughs out loud at my trusting heart
It's like I didn't see the penny
I missed the fountain by a couple yards
If you would only stay gone
Maybe I could move on

Oh oh oh oh
Baby baby baby bring me down
I want to be right where you are
Baby baby baby bring me down
You can look me in the eye and break my heart
Break my heart

OH! Baby baby baby bring me down
I want to be right where you are
Baby baby baby bring me down
You can look me in the eye and break my heart
Break my heart

OH! Baby baby baby bring me down
I want to be right where you are
Baby baby baby bring me down
You can look me in the eye and break my heart
Break my heart

Bring me down...

October 28, 2009

Wisdom in lyrics

Hey white liar
The truth comes out a little at a time
And it spreads just like a fire
Slips off of your tongue like turpentine
And I don´t know why
White liar.
(White Liar by Miranda Lambert)

I wish they could see this now
Where they say this change can go ...
So many things I never thought I'd see
Happening right in front of me ...
Welcome to the future.
(Welcome To The Future by Brad Paisley)

Remember all the things we wanted
Now our memories are haunted ...
Looking at you makes it harder
But I know that you'll find another
That doesn't always make you want to cry ...
You know that I love you so
I love you enough to let you go.
(Already Gone by Kelly Clarkson)

October 20, 2009

Healthcare: Women


Below are excerpts from messages my brother or I have written:

By it’s very definition, capitalism is an economic system based on open competition. Then why do individual healthcare companies control the majority of the market within a given state? Are these companies that successful or are they monopolies, exempt from anti-trust legislation? In Alabama, for example, Blue Cross Blue Shield own 83% of the market. I like to believe that offering a public healthcare option would both force health insurance companies to compete and be innovative.

Moreover, the lauded benchmark of capitalism—efficiency – is dangerously at odds with human welfare within the insurance industry. They make profit when you don’t get treatment. The inherent conflict of interest in this begs the question whether health makes sense as a for-profit industry at all. It’s like having the fox guard the henhouse.

I think that opposition to offering the option of health care to all Americans stems from two main sources: an unfounded fear of socialism and an esurient disregard to the health and well-being of others.

What makes more sense is socializing institutions that are by their nature inefficient or whose driving principle is at odds with capitalism. This idea of a social market economy has been practiced since roughly the 1950s in Europe and to marvelous effect, particularly with health care ... The U.S. spends 16% of its GDP on health, which amounts to $2.2 trillion. This is more than France (11%), the United Kingdom (8.4%) or Singapore (3.4%). When the World Health Organization rated health systems around the world, Germany ranked 25. [The U.S. was 37, behind Malta, Singapore, and Saudi Arabia.] And although the U.S. is in a recession, it’s worth noting tough economic times haven't caused other industrialized countries to put healthcare on the back burner. The United Kingdom made healthcare available to everyone following World War II, when the country was in economic ruin.

It’s worth noting that Medicare and Medicaid account for half of the total spent on healthcare, but this system is paying for the elderly, whose annual healthcare cost is more ($5,531) than that of the average American (median age 35.3 years) ($4,778). More alarming is that insurance companies spend 10% of their revenue on administrative overhead. [By comparison, Medicare and Medicaid spend between 2 and 5%.] I find it difficult to sympathize with the insurance companies who claim they wouldn’t be able to compete, financially, against a public option plan when they are lobbying hundreds of millions of dollars against Obama’s reform. Why aren’t health companies using this money to investigate, develop, and advertise alternative healthcare reform plans?

Yes, everyone has access to emergency healthcare (like dialing 911 or walking into an ER), but the millions without health insurance are significantly less likely to receive preventative care. Without early detection and the immediate implementation of other prevention methods, a simple ailment (like inflammation in blood vessels) may become a chronic condition (i.e. heart disease). If those without health insurance are unable to obtain optimal treatment in a timely fashion, then they will be forced to have a more extensive, and often more expensive, treatment – all at the cost of the taxpayer. Currently, 50% of all bankruptcies are due to medical bills.

Tort reform to curtail malpractice lawsuits is a necessity. Individual states have (Texas and California) or are in the process (Pennsylvania) of passing legislation related to this. However, it is difficult to gauge the effect curtailing malpractice lawsuits would have on reducing total healthcare costs, as the numbers range from $0 to $108 billion.

The above argument does not appeal to a higher moral purpose at all, but instead addresses the health care question from the stance of financial minimization. Even if you believe that those without health care shouldn’t get health care, you must concede that this is an ideal that is not currently practiced and is likely an impossibility; the cost has been and will continue to be passed along to others.

I support Health Care for America Now

October 16, 2009

What I'm listening to lately

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this song! Not only does it describe exactly how I feel, but it is peppy! Friggin' awesome.

October 05, 2009

Children's movies

I love happy endings. I love knowing that, despite the seemingly insurmountable challenge the main character faces, everything will be ok. There will be sorrow and tears, laughter and smiles. So when I don't want any more reminders of the horrible way that people treat one another -- the lies we tell those we love, the backstabbing, the cheating, the wars -- I watch a children's movie. It's one of the best ways to turn a frown upside down! 'Cause in the end, everything will be alright.

More country music

When deeply wounded, healing is more of a process. Progress is sporadic, and every step forward seems to be accompanied by two steps back. One's desperate desire to be ok, to move on, may not be feasible for months. So while I feel I'm not as damaged as I was initially, I'm still trapped in the anger. I just hope karma is a bitch.    

September 17, 2009


A year ago, this was when everything started. I had liked you for awhile, but this weekend was when I learned that you liked me too. I felt so exhilarated, so free. That newfound knowledge was enough to spur me on to call you. It was the beginning. I had no way of knowing how deeply I would love you. I was too busy walking on clouds.

And now, a year later, this is a reminder of the end. An unending circle. Now, I can barely stand to be in the same room as you. I have so much anger and hurt. I worry this experience ... this heartbreak ... will be the one that I can't get over. I already have so much shit in my head.

Why does the beginning sting?

September 10, 2009

When things were beautiful

Screw you

How dare you yell at me at work!! I never raised my voice. I spoke in a calm manner. I was upset, fuming even, but I kept my composure. But you yelled at me! Take some damn responsibility! You screwed up. You broke your promise. You chose not to tell me in a timely fashion. What did you expect? You placated me for months with this request, always saying there would be a next time. Well, now there isn't. This was a work thing. It had nothing to do with our personal relationship. You knew how important this was to me. But instead of being proactive and heading off the confusion and hurt, you waited 'til I realized what happened and then projected your hostility on me while we're standing in an open room with the doors wide open. You're such a jerk. Fuck off.

September 07, 2009

A dream

You were in my dream yesterday. It was autumn and you were wearing your gray jacket. You came up behind me and wrapped your arms around my waist. I remember feeling so happy to be close to you. You told me that you realized what a mistake you had made. You told me you were ready to come back to me, that you'd worked through your demons. I asked you how I knew this wouldn't happen again. I remember feeling regret the instant I asked the question -- afraid it would reverse all your progress -- but I had to know. You didn't have an answer.

September 06, 2009

August 27, 2009

Some days

Some days are better than others. Today isn't the best of days. But, even in the sorrow, these songs make me smile. Perhaps it is because I can relate? Enjoy.

August 21, 2009


After a whirlwind few days on the AREC tour, I'm so happy to be back. It boggles my mind how many students within my department have limited, if any, knowledge of agricultural practices. I guess that's what happens when you work all day in a lab under fluorescent light. Potentially more challenging than being outside in 95 degree heat and humidity was trying to eat a hardshell crab! I was exhausted after consuming just one!!

August 16, 2009

The real reason(s) for the breakup

After post-birthday kisses (and the confusion that followed), we had a chat about what was going on. I went through my analysis of the situation -- why the relationship ended, what causes forced that conclusion, why we're in the state we are now -- and, at the end, he looked at me with this sad, melancholy look. 
"I feel like I'm diseased," he said. "If I let you too much in here," he touched his chest, "I'm going to infect you." I stared at him, not knowing what to say, but understanding. "I'm so angry to be at this point in my life ..." He stared off into space.
"... to have it all unraveling," I finished for him.

[The relationship didn't end because there was something wrong with it. We both acknowledged that the feelings are still there: the love, compassion, honesty, longing. His inability to be emotionally available to me is a result of all the other shit going on. His whole life is in flux right now. He could lose everything he's worked so hard for -- his home, his financial stability, his pride. He is frustrated by his directionless and disconnected son. He is frustrated by his aging mother -- another child, in a way, since she requires so much assistance with day-to-day things like paperwork. He is constantly stressed about his mentally unstable ex, who alternately threatens to ruin his life and kill everyone in the family.]

"I know the ship is sinking," I said. "but I wanted to be your life preserver. The thing you clung to to keep from going under." I looked at him and grinned. "But you shouted, 'Save yourself!' "

August 15, 2009

Wisdom from Absurdity

I recently read "Alice in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking-Glass" by Lewis Carroll and would like to share some of the wisdom Alice acquires during her adventures.  Enjoy!

"Cheshire-Puss," she began, rather timidly ... "Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?"
"That depends a good deal on where you want to get to," said the Cat.
"I don't much care where ---" said Alice.
"Then it doesn't matter which way you go," said the Cat.

... "Visit either you like; they're both mad."
"But I don't want to go among mad people," Alice remarked.
"Oh, you can't help that," said the Cat.

"Take some more tea," the March Hare said to Alice, very earnestly.
"I've had nothing yet," Alice replied in an offended tone, "so I can't take more."
"You mean you can't take less," said the Hatter, "it's very easy to take more than nothing."

"Well, in our country," said Alice, still panting a little, "you'd generally get to somewhere else -- if you ran very fast for a long time as we've been doing."
"A slow sort of country!" said the Queen. "Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!"

"I know what you're thinking about," said Tweedledum, "but it isn't so, nohow."
"Contrariwise," continued Tweedledee, "if it was so, it might be; and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn't so, it ain't. That's logic."

August 10, 2009

Thank you (sarcasm)

Thank you for not answering your phone again. I've grown so accustomed to your voicemail that I don't know what I'd say if you actually picked up. Thank you for letting me down again. I really enjoy the sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach, the panicked nausea, that accompanies the realization that I mean nothing to you. Thank you for reminding me, in your calm exasperated tone, that I cannot garner any more answers from you because you don't have them to offer. I still fail to understand how any of this makes any friggin' sense, so excuse me for trying to find clarity. Thank you for adding to the self-deprecating stuff in my head. I needed a few more issues to consult with a shrink. Thank you for ripping away the best happiness I've ever felt. The excruciating pain that has taken its place is comforting. Thank you for making my every day life a living hell. I love the interactions that further emphasize you have no concern for me, my well being or our friendship. What a wonderful way to return all my love and affection. Thanks.

August 07, 2009

Love song snippets

And, baby, when it's love, if it's not rough, it isn't fun ....
(Poker Face by Lady Gaga)

But I knew you best, back when love was just a feeling that ran out between my legs onto the, back of my dress ....
(Two Steps Forward by Emmy the Great)

I'm gonna need a forklift cause all the baggage weighs a ton. I know we've had our problems, I can't remember one ....
(Almost by Bowling For Soup)

Picture perfect fading smiles are all that's left in sight ... Am I supposed to be happy? With all I ever wanted, it comes with a price ....
(Cat and Mouse by Red Jumpsuit Apparatus)

But I hate that I love you so ... But no one in this world knows me the way you know me, so you'll probably always have a spell on me ....
(Hate That I Love You by Rihanna)

Here's to the men we love to love. Here's to the men in love with us. Here's to the men who pass on us. Fuck the men ....
(A Toast To Men by Willa Ford)

If it makes you happy, it can't be that bad. If it makes you happy, then why the hell are you so sad?
(If It Makes You Happy by Sheryl Crow)

If you love me, say it ... if you want me, show it ... you see now actions speak louder than words, so don't just say things that I've already heard ....
(If You Love Me by Brownstone)

August 04, 2009

Sand-ity for the soul

I'm a firm believer that, in order to put things in perspective and evaluate life, you need to walk away from it. You need to pack your bags and travel somewhere else. By completely removing yourself from the situation and "forcing" yourself to relax, you find that things aren't as bad as they seem. 
For me, the epiphany that the man I love no longer exists -- and subsequently, that I need to stop talking to him as if he and I are still happily together -- came within moments of arriving at a South Carolina beach. Perhaps therapists should encourage this type of session, rather than reclining on a couch and talking to a wall!  

July 28, 2009

Six word memoirs

While looking at this fabulous website about food, I found a post about "six word memoirs". Below are some of my favorites (in no particular order):

1) Never did read the owner's manual.
2) Forgot what I wanted to say.
3) Tried writing about love; vomited everywhere.
4) I will still complete my dissertation.
5) A girl can keep dreaming, right?
6) Drunk on life. Now in rehab.
7) Evolution is the price of immortality.
8) I love you doesn't mean forever.

I think mine would be: Bitter with baggage seeks happiness, love.

Then again, it could just as easily be: Thanks but I didn't order water.  [In reference to if the the glass is half empty or half full.] 

Love is a battlefield

I don't understand how you could have stayed in a failing marriage for several years -- hell, she was f-ing crazy and no medicine could help her -- yet you killed our perfectly healthy relationship after 2 weeks of deliberation. What lies do you tell yourself? Do you watch the resulting destruction (emotional explosions, memory land mines, and toxic conversations) with a sense of awe? Amazed that love can turn into something so ugly, given enough pain? Or do you hang your head, awaiting the silence of our relationship's death? I know regret is in there somewhere too. You can't tell me that I'm the most important thing in your life, the one thing that makes you happy, and then feel nothing when you destroy my heart. I didn't peg you for a sociopath.

July 27, 2009

"What is a Soulmate" by Emily Matthews

If you have found a smile
that is the sweetest one you've known,
If you have heard, within a voice,
the echoes of your own,
If you have felt a touch
that stirs the longings of your heart,
And still can feel that closeness
in the moments you're apart,
If you have filled with wonder
at the way two lives can blend,
To weave a perfect pattern
that is seamless, end to end,
If you believe some things in life
are simply meant to be,
Then you have found your soulmate,
your heart's own destiny.

Nothing like the brochure: part 1

I've often wondered why instruction manuals aren't given out at birth. That way, when you encounter a make-or-break-you kind of challenge, you have the wisdom of all those who came before me. It seems ridiculous to be tossed into the world without this sort of ancestral knowledge. Hell, other animals have this preprogrammed! [Migration routes, mating rituals, etc.]

So what sorts of topics should be included in this instruction manual? The basic things we all strive to achieve: Love. Health. Happiness. That's it. Necessities that, while influenced by technology and current politics, are fundamentally unchanged. 

Life -- it sure ain't nothing like the brochure!

July 26, 2009

Feelin' the country music

I heard this song on the radio lately and loved it!

July 23, 2009

Science personality test

In 2005, The Science Advisory Board developed a personality test for scientists. It was published in Science, Nature, and a plethora of other journals. Although the personality test has since been removed from the TSAB website, I thought the breakdown of archetypal researchers merited a few cynical comments from a graduate student point of view.

Leader: When others follow, you lead [to the bar or events with free food]. During lab meetings, you suggest off-the-wall experiments that cause your labmates to roll their eyes and ignore you. Your PI applauds your creativity, but will claim your ideas as his own in grants and departmental functions. Your confidence in yourself will be crushed during prelims.

Explorer: You enjoy new terrain (non-research buildings) and adventures (undergrad parties). During lab meetings, you plan your next vacation while simultaneously reading the news. Your labmates think you're lazy, but you do just enough work to not get reprimanded. Your attitude: If it isn't broken, don't fix it.  

Organizer: You come to lab meetings with a list of updates and questions. You are frustrated that fellow graduate students take advantage of your generosity. Your PI treats you like the lab manager, but without the better pay or benefits. You debate whether you should've been a stay-at-home mom.

Enthusiast: You love science. Your workweek excels 40 hours by Wednesday and you never take vacation. During lab meetings, you're updating your lab notebook and planning out tomorrow's set of experiments. Your PI thinks your the model graduate student and loves giving you side projects. Watch out though -- You'll be burned out by the end of your 2nd year.

July 22, 2009

The value of concern

Against my better judgement, against the constant reminder red ribbon on my wrist, I talked to him. I don't know why I bother because the response is never what I want. I keep doing the same thing, beating a dead horse through conversation, expecting a different result. The very definition of insanity! I suppose it's because it's him. Every moment of every day, I miss him. I can't accept that he isn't (or won't be) part of my life because then the pain would be real. Denial allows me to wake up in the morning and look forward to the day. But the verbal diarrhea I have when I'm around him has got to stop! 

I told him I wished we didn't work together -- that not seeing each other would help me function. He told me that he is fine, he will be fine, but that he feels sorry for me. He regrets that our work environment isn't happy and jovial like it use to be. I felt the earth shift and the blood drain out of my face. How could he say that when he's the one who put me in this position? I have no where else to go and no one else to talk to. I stared at him for a moment and then said, "Don't tell me you feel sorry for me. I don't appreciate that." He threw his hands in the air and stormed out of the room. "Fine," he yelled, "I won't."

July 21, 2009

Life as a graduate student

He loves me but ....

While I was trying to make sense of the chaos, I came across a post by Lola that spoke volumes to me.  It's as if she was inside my head during the break-up.

He Loves Me But...

He tells me he loves me but that love just isn't enough. I always thought that I had enough love for both of us. If I just loved him enough. If I was just good enough. If I just held on long enough.

He talks to me about the reality of our situation. He makes excuses. He says he loves me. He tells me all the reasons why we failed. Why he wasn't good enough. Why I wasn't good enough. I think to myself that I just need to remain calm. Don't fly off the handle. Don't give him the tears and the yelling he is expecting. If I just hold on he will change his mind.

He wishes things were different. He says he loves me. He's sorry but he can't put himself through this anymore. He tells me all the places we went wrong. All the ways that prove he has made the right decision. I think to myself about all the good that was between us. I wonder how he can't remember any of that. I wonder if he has found someone new. I yell at myself in my head, "Remain calm!" Just hang on. He loves me right?

Slowly the words start to sink in. He keeps telling me he loves me but... There is no but after "I love you". You love someone or you don't. You give yourself to someone with your whole heart. You trust them. You love them. You share your fears, your hopes, your dreams, and even the ugliest parts you keep hidden deep down inside you.

I start to cry. He brushes my bangs back from my forehead and wipes my tears. I want to slap him. He says he loves me. I call him a liar. If he loved me, truly loved me, he wouldn't be doing this. He gave up. He always promised he would never give up on me. On us. He lied.

He kisses me softly on the lips. Just a breath of a kiss. He takes me by the hand and leads me to the bedroom. Silently, in the dark, I allow him to undress me. He lays beside me on the bed and explores my body like he is trying to burn the images into his brain. He whispers over and over that he loves me. When it is over he asks me to stay the night. One last time. I slowly get up and get dressed. I lean over to kiss him and I walk away without saying a word.

I love him ... but I don't.

Online diary

I've never been a big fan of diaries.  I use to have them when I was young (i.e. in elementary school) but most of my entries were written in anger. And contrary to common knowledge, I never did gain much satisfaction out of writing in them. Seemed like a waste of money to me. Since the breakup, however, I've felt the need to reconnect with myself. [Hell, it isn't like I have much else to do!] Though I don't intend for anyone to really follow this, I hope it will help me work through my demons and come to peace with the situation.

So ... to get you up to speed, I had been dating a wonderful man for 8 months. I thought he was my soulmate. Sure, there were issues. A significant age gap. The uncertainty of where my job search will take me. Family drama. But, in my mind, none of these were deal breakers. The way I felt about him was different than I had ever felt about anyone, even my ex-fiance. I was devastated when he broke up with me. He was my best friend, and we spent every weekend hanging out.

I want to be angry at him. I want to yell until my voice is hoarse. I want to throw things, break things, because I believe the sound of shattering will help. But instead, I feel exactly the same way I did before this disaster. I'm still in love with him. Instead of saying that I deserve better, good riddance to bad rubbish, I beat myself up, convinced that, somehow, I wasn't enough.

I'm trying to crawl out of the hole I've been in for the past month, but it is slow going. Please bear with me.