Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Woohoo carrots


I realized this morning that I am now back to approximately the same weight I was at when I started Weight Watchers in January 2003. It's somewhat distressing that I am just now back to where I started then. . . but at the same time, I'm pretty happy because my weight is no longer going up, up, up. I can't believe that I let myself get up to nearly 235 before taking control again. Ugh. I can partially blame the months I was on Zoloft, but not entirely. It feels good to be back on track.

I've had a very good past 24 hours. I had no breakfast yesterday, opting for a nonfat caffe mocha from Starbucks instead (bad, I know). Yesterday's lunch was just a turkey sandwich on rye, no mayo, with fruit salad. I had a few saltines with peanut butter in the afternoon (and one mini Hershey bar), as well as a 3/4 oz piece of lowfat cheddar cheese. Dinner was one of my Jenny Craig entrees, followed by a Jenny snack at bedtime.

As planned, I also exercised yesterday evening. I tried out the exercise room at my new apartment complex. I spent 10 minutes on the (crappy) elliptical trainer, then 10 minutes on the stationary bike. Aside from the bike and elliptical, there is a decent treadmill and a few weight machines. It's not the greatest equipment, and it was God-awful hot in there, but it'll do for now. (I'd rather avoid the expense of a separate gym membership unless it's necessary.) I also did some crunches and push-ups after my little aerobic workout. I couldn't really do many, though. :(

This morning I took the dog for a brisk 20-minute walk before work and started the day with a bowl of Kashi Go Lean Crunch with raspberries & 1% milk (in addition to the now obligatory nonfat caffe mocha). My energy level is quite high this morning, and I'm feeling good about myself.

Lunch today will be out, as I am going to a deposition with one of the partners and we'll likely eat on the way over. So I'm not sure what I'll have, but I'm confident I'll be able to make a good choice. Dinner will be a pizza from Trader Joe's, assuming my oven is now working. Grrrr. . .

Once it cools off. . . . whenever that may be, probably October. . . I'd like to start jogging again. I really enjoyed it when I did it back in 2003/4. Sebastian loved it, too. I don't want to run/jog until/unless my weight is under 200 lbs, so for now, I'll stick to walking & the elliptical. Maybe I can be under 200 by October 1st! Actually, I think that is quite doable.

Not much else to tell here. I didn't even get home until nearly 7 pm; then I spent most of the evening reviewing some deposition testimony. Exciting life I lead. LOL Well, I guess I can't be a social butterfly all the time.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Good triumphs over evil

211.6 (hmmm)
I dug out my scale yesterday afternoon as I was unpacking and weighed myself. It said 213.0, but I didn't believe it. . . I even moved it to a few different areas of the bathroom floor, thinking "this can't be right."
This morning, I am even lower, so I guess the scale was right. I'm by no means complaining; I'm just a little perplexed at how I have managed to lose weight over the past week or so. I've been drinking lots of coffees with sugar, cream, & chocolate syrup, eating very few veggies, and getting little exercise. On the whole, I haven't been overeating per se, just not doing all the things I usually need to do to lose weight. I've even been--gasp!--drinking alcohol: two margaritas on Thursday night and a glass of wine on Saturday. Ah well.
I am going to get back on track this week with my Jenny Craig eating plan and exercise. Today after work, I am going to try out the exercise room at my apartment complex to see if that will meet my needs. If it's not adequate, I'll need to join a gym and will probably join one near work. . . that way I could work out at lunch sometimes if I wanted to. I'm also going to hit the grocery store and buy some fruits and vegetables, among other things. I need 'em!
All my stuff got moved to Phoenix on Saturday. I had a variety of small things go wrong: the apartment complex office opened a little late; I twisted my ankle walking down the stairs (it still hurts a little); I had to re-route my drive due to an accident, adding time to my drive; then the movers arrived early; and, finally, I got a ticket for making a right turn on red where I wasn't supposed to. The traffic ticket was the funniest part, in retrospect: the officer pulled me over right in front of my house, and the movers stood in the driveway watching--on my dime--as he wrote my ticket. Grrr. . .
To top it off, there had been a huge monsoon storm in Tucson, and the streets in midtown were all flooded, so I had to take an alternate route to get downtown and clear out my P.O. box. As it turned out, I only trailed the movers by 5 minutes, despite these delays. Everything got unloaded, and so far it looks as though nothing got broken. So no real complaints.
I am getting unpacked. The kitchen is done, except for a box of pots & pans that I found after I'd declared I was finished. LOL Most of my clothes are where they should be, and I've made a start on organizing my bathroom. So far, so good.
Aside from my move, not too much else happened this weekend. Friday night I relaxed at home and read Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows. Yesterday afternoon I went with J to see The Simpsons movie. And last night I finished Harry Potter. I thought it was pretty good. I won't comment more on it in case anyone reading this hasn't read it yet.
Side note about J: I can't decide whether he likes me as a friend or more. I've finally arrived at the conclusion that the reason *I* can't decide is that *he* can't decide. I freely admit that I am obsessive about men. . . but I am not generally a waffler. I usually make up my mind how I think things are and stick with that until/unless proven wrong. Though he has given me no definitive, unequivocal sign of romantic interest, he has given me *some* reason to think that his interest goes beyond merely friendship. BUT since I just want us to be friends--at least for now--I am going to continue operating on the assumption that that is what we are. It's working for me for now. :)

Friday, July 27, 2007

It is what it is, but what is it?

Just a quick entry. . . my workload has increased considerably just in the last 24 hours, so I need to get crackin'.
J and I met for dinner last night, as planned. It was a four-hour dinner; we were literally two of the last patrons in the restaurant. I am still immensely enjoying his company. I actually think I enjoy him more now than I did back in college. . . simply because in college a lot of my energy when we were together was focused on trying to impress him and be the woman I thought he wanted. Now I'm just me, so it frees up my focus to really listen to what he has to say on a deeper level.
We talked about all sorts of things (as you might expect, in over four hours!): incidents from the past, what we each have going on in our lives now (school for him, new job for me), past relationships, parents, religion. I love his laugh and the sound of his voice; I love his views of life (even when we don't agree); and I love the way he really listens to what I tell him. I had kind-of forgotten what a good listener he is.
I would say thathere is still some sexual tension between us. . . but, having said that, he has given me no indication that he wants anything more than friendship. Frankly, given everything that each of us has going on in our lives right now, I think a close friendship between us is preferable in many ways to anything romantic. So I am happy with the tone of things as they are. In the interest of full disclosure, let me clarify: that is NOT to say that I wouldn't--someday--want "more" with him or that I don't desire him. On the contrary. But I am happy with the way things are going for right now.
All in all, I am really enjoying talking with him and hanging out. And I hope nothing happens to ruin it.
Gotta get to work. And I have to move tomorrow. Ugh. Well, at least after tomorrow, I will truly be living here in Phoenix. . . . .

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Far too short

It is probably obvious to anyone who reads this blog that I love my Golden Retriever, Sebastian, very much. Despite seeming tough on the outside, I actually have a very loving and caring aspect to my personality for which I have few outlets. Because I am childless (and will likely remain so), I have lavished much affection on my dog.
My first week back in Phoenix has gone well so far, except for the fact that I miss my boy. Yesterday I got a periodic update from the website of author Dean Koontz--another Golden lover. The email included an announcement that Koontz's Golden Trixie had to be put to sleep on June 30th due to a tumor in her heart.
I know I'm a big dork, but reading that Trixie had died and Koontz's tribute to her brought tears to my eyes. It made me contemplate how I will feel some day when Sebastian dies. A horrible thing to contemplate! It's a sad thing how short a dog's life is. And thinking about it made me miss Sebastian even more.
I talked to KW on Tuesday night, and apparently Sebastian has been a bit of a naughty boy at her house. Two mornings in a row, he escaped from the backyard and ran all over the neighborhood before KW could catch him. She thought her backyard was secure, but he found a little opening in the back wall that he can just fit through if he shimmies.
I have certainly been keeping myself busy. In addition to having jumped in with both feet at work, I have seen at least one friend every evening this week. It's been fun!
Last night after work, I went to Macy's in hopes of finding something more flattering to wear to work today. (I am meeting J for drinks directly after work, so that--rather than impressing anyone in the office--is my true motive for wanting to look cute.) I didn't find anything that made me look hot, but I did buy a fabulous Jones New York pantsuit that was marked down to 77% off the original price! The top that came with the suit is sleeveless and not very flattering; because I know I am likely to take off my jacket while out with J, I decided not to wear it today. But I am psyched that I got such a great deal.
My eating has been pretty bad this week: I have had lunch out every day and dinner out two of three nights. I brought my lunch today, but I will likely end up having dinner with J tonight, too, so that's another night eating out. Also, I've been snacking some at work; the firm provides pretzels, crackers & peanut butter, & Goldfish. And I've been drinking coffee with real sugar because the firm doesn't stock Splenda (& I hate Sweet n Low).
I've also been doing zero exercise. It's really been too hot and humid, even in the early mornings, to exercise outdoors, and I do not belong to a gym here. Once I get moved into my apartment, I can exercise in their (small) facility.
I am actually looking forward to getting back on track with eating more healthfully and working out. Realistically, that is not going to happen until next Monday. But that's not too far off.
One thing I had forgotten about working in civil practice is how hard it can be to stay awake & alert when you spend the bulk of your time at your desk reading. (Sitting at my desk all day in the prosecutor's office was a rare, rare thing. . .and it usually involved a lot more calls than reading.) Monday and Tuesday afternoons I nearly dozed off, despite multiple cups of coffee. I've polled my other private practice lawyer friends, and the consensus seems to be that I need to exercise regularly, eat fewer carbs, take frequent breaks, and not try to give up coffee. LOL Today actually hasn't been too bad thus far. . . but I have been writing (& active) as much or more than I've been reading.
I am adjusting to my new life! :)

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

A really great day

What makes a really great day? I suppose any one event, if it is of sufficient magnitude or importance, can make or break your day. Usually for me, it is a aggregation of events that make my day a great one.
Yesterday was just that kind of day. I feel the need to immortalize it here because days like this just do not come along as regularly as I might like. . . . :)
I started my new job yesterday. Everyone I met at the office was nice, friendly, and helpful. There is a very congenial atmosphere there. One of the nurse/legal consultants actually had her dog (a very cute Schnauzer) in the office for a few hours.
Immediately upon my arrival, there were tasks that needed my attention. I have often been annoyed/bored by the common practice of starting a job and having nothing meaningful to do for the first week or so. . . therefore I was happy to have work waiting for me to do.
I spent a mostly enjoyable day getting oriented to my surroundings, accompanying another lawyer to court, and reviewing files needing immediate action or attention.
At 5:15, an awesome monsoon storm started. I was able to see and hear the torrential rain right outside my window as I worked. I love the summer storms here!
After work, I headed over to KH's house to visit her and her new baby. On the drive over, I talked to J. We had an enjoyable conversation and made plans to meet Thursday after work for drinks & maybe dinner.
KH's little baby was adorable! It was fun to meet him, and she looked great and seemed to be doing very well.
I had text & email messages from several friends throughout the day wishing me well. I had a nice chat with E on the way home from KH's. C and I made plans to meet for dinner at one of my favorite local restaurants tonight after work. Then KC & I spent the rest of the evening hanging out and chatting until I went to bed.
All in all, a wonderful day. Not because of any one thing, but because nothing went wrong and many things went right. I have a good job, with generous pay, real responsibilities, and friendly colleagues; I have good friends who care about me and more social activities going this week than I usually have in three weeks; the glories of nature; and I got to hold and cuddle an adorable baby. If Sebastian had been with me, it would've been a perfect day! :)

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Be careful what you wish for. . . you might get it

215.6 (official JC weigh-in at noon)

I gained 1 lb since last week's appointment. . . which was actually on a Thursday, so 9 days ago. Considering my complete disregard for healthy eating during those 9 days, I'm surprised that I didn't gain more. So I'll take it. With all my "going away" events and my trip to Vegas, I knew I wasn't going to follow any kind of structured eating program. But I also knew that state of affairs was temporary and that I'd eventually get back on track.

I have spent most of today either packing or avoiding packing. I really hate packing!! I have moved a ton in my adult life; I would literally have to sit down and make a list to figure out how many times I've moved just since college. Even during the six-and-a-half years I have lived here in Tucson, I have lived in 6 separate residences. Despite all the moves I've made, I don't seem to get any better at it. Moving is one of those times when my lack of home organizational skills really rears its head.

Poor Sebastian has been unsettled all day, watching me pack. I'm sure he must wonder what the hell is going on. I feel bad for uprooting him again, particularly when we've only lived here a little over 3 months. But he's a dog, after all, and I'm sure he'll get over it and adjust to his new home.

Oh well. By this time tomorrow, it'll all be done--one way or another--and I'll be headed back to Phoenix for the week. I start my new job on Monday. I am beginning to feel a little excited about it. Not as apprehensive as I was, at least. I hope I like it and can do a good job for them.

My friend KH had her baby on 7/18 while I was in Vegas! I'm very excited for her and her husband. I am going to see the baby this week one night after work. Fun! I love little babies.

Because I won't have moved my stuff up from Tucson yet, I know I will still be unsettled and not yet in a new routine this week. I will be staying with my friend KC, so even my commute will not be the same one I'll have once I get into my new place. I have mentally prepared myself for that feeling of being at loose ends for the next few weeks. I hope to offset that feeling somewhat by seeing more of my Phoenix friends than I could when I was living here in Tucson.

Not sure when (if?) I am going to see J again. I can't decide where I want that to go. Well, let me clarify: I know exactly where I want it to go, if I'm honest about it, at least to myself. In a perfect world, I want to start a romantic relationship with him. . . one that would last a long, long time. In short, I'd love to pick up where we left off when I was 22. . . before things went wrong between us.

BUT as much of a romantic as I am, life has also made me that much of a realist. I have no idea what his feelings for me are. At this point, I have no firm reason to believe that he is interested in anything more than friendship with me.

Even assuming that J has some romantic feelings for me, after my break-up with SL in March, I really don't know if I could withstand the emotional trauma of another difficult break-up so soon. It would be stupid of me to get involved with someone right now. . . anyone, really. Getting involved with J would be an even dumber decision than finding someone new because of my history with him and the feelings I already have for him. Granted, my feelings for J have lain dormant for many years. . . but I suspect that, given the right circumstances, they will spring back to life quite readily. Even if I were meeting him now, for the first time, I could see myself easily forming an attachment to him.

On one level, I actually hope that J only wants to be friends. If he isn't interested in dating me, there is no way for me to be hurt by him (again). But to say I fully hope that he's not interested would be a lie. There is another part of me that hopes we will eventually rekindle our relationship of old.

Well, at this point, I don't suppose there is even much point in dwelling on it. (Not that that has ever stopped me before. LOL) Things will develop as they will. J and I are likely to be living in the same city for at least the next four years or so; that should be ample time for whatever is going to happen to happen.

I've never been much good at just letting go and letting things unfold naturally, though. Maybe this is the universe giving me an opportunity to correct that flaw. Who knows? They do say that God works in mysterious ways. . .

Friday, July 20, 2007

The one that got away

(no weight to record--just flew home this afternoon)

I just returned home tonight from a fun trip to Vegas and am looking forward (ha!) to a weekend of packing all my belongings for my fast-approaching move to Phoenix. But tonight I don't want to write about all these positive changes/happenings in my life. I want to write about my "one that got away" because it is a topic that has been occupying my mind of late.

I think most people who have dated--men and women alike, married and single--have a memory of at least one person in the past who could've been That Person. I don't really believe in the concept of The One or soulmates. . . I think that most of us have a number of people with whom we could be compatible and that a great deal of dating/relationships is timing-related. Still, there are certainly some people who stand out from the crowd, for whatever reason.You can call that person what you'd like: my best friend calls these men her "what if" guys. I prefer the more fishing-related "one that got away." Sometimes this person is someone you dated where things just didn't quite work out; sometimes it's someone you didn't even date.

To fully discuss the person I think of as my "one that got away," I have to go back to a much earlier time in my life. We first met when I was 20 years old. I had already had my share of bad relationships with men. At the time, I was still in an "on again, off again" with a guy who had no ambition and was a habitual liar to boot; my last relationship before that loser had been with a thoughtless oaf who had a penchant for doing things he didn't remember when he was drinking. . . including hooking up with random homely women and assaulting people (not me, other guys). I could go on, but you get the picture. These men were representative of the kind of guys I dated during this time in my life.

In addition to the truly poor choices I was making with men--though I didn't have the insight at 20 to see that I was making poor choices; I just thought I had "bad luck" with men and was a loser magnet--I was also at a bit of a loss about what to do with my life. After 3 years of pre-med, I had recently come to the realization that I didn't want to be a doctor. . . but I hadn't yet decided what I would do instead. Because I knew I would eventually finish my degree and do something, I continued to go to school, majoring in psychology, taking a break from the hard-core sciences I'd been taking to prepare for med school.

My parents had been divorced since I was 9, and I had long since gotten over any trauma related to that event. After spending many years raising my sister and me, my father had finally remarried less than two years before this, when I was 18, and my stepmom and I did not get along. My poor relationship with her had negatively impacted my (previously close) relationship with my father. This never-before-experienced distance between my father and me contributed to my feeling groundless and without direction for the first time in my life as much as my lack of a clear career goal.

Now that I have set the stage by explaining where I was at in my mind and in my life. . . . allow me to explain how this person entered the scene. . . .

One of my courses that fall was an honors seminar about interpersonal relationships with a wonderful psych professor. The professor and the seminar were both top-notch; I could probably write an entire blog entry about all the things I learned that semester. But that's for another time. I am only mentioning the class because it is necessary to the story at hand.

One of the other members of this seminar course was a woman six years my senior who I'll call PJ. Now, nearly sixteen years later, I can't remember what led PJ & me to become friends with each other, out of the 12-15 other people in our class . . . but we did, and it wasn't long before we were socializing outside class. I don't recall our being particularly close, but through a convergence of various events, I began to spend more and more time with PJ: I finally had the good sense to end things with my current loser boyfriend, and two of my closest friends were both out of school for the semester, one having a baby, one on a work co-op gig in another state. In college, my circle of friends was not wide enough to lose three people with whom I'd spent the bulk of my time and still provide me with lots of social opportunities. In a sense, I began hanging out more with PJ by default than through any real active choice.

PJ had a boyfriend, J. In the normal way, what single person really wants to hang out with a couple? But spending time with PJ & her boyfriend J actually wasn't weird. PJ assured me one of the first times I went out socially with her and J that they were the kind of couple who preferred to hang out with other people; they weren't love dovey, more companionate & friendly with each other. And over time, I found that her statements were more true than not.

Though I couldn't tell you now my first impression of PJ, I distinctly remember the first time I met J. Several weeks into the semester, I ran into PJ & J on my way to the post office on campus between classes. I remember being very surprised by him on a couple of different levels; first, because he looked to be my age (remember, PJ was 6 years older than me--and that seems like a lot when you're 20--and I'd assumed that he was her age), and second, because he was far more attractive than PJ. I don't think I am being cruel or biased when I say that PJ, though she was intelligent and articulate, in addition to other good qualities, was by no means a pretty girl. A kind way of describing her might have been "plain." J, on the other hand, was attractive: regular features, a great smile (with teeth that had clearly had the attentions of an orthodontist), blond hair, blue eyes. J was average height and build--maybe just a little on the slim side. J was not *my* type, and he probably would not stop traffic, but he was good-looking enough for me to wonder what his attraction to PJ was. Let's face it, most men, particularly college-aged ones, are not much known for looking beyond the superficial.

As I got to know PJ & J better, both as a couple and as individuals, I learned that they had met while working together at a popular food service chain (which shall remain nameless to preserve anonymity). She had been the manager of the store where he worked part-time during one of his first years of college. Despite the difference in their ages (he was actually a year older than me, so 5 years younger than PJ), both PJ & J were starting their senior year in college when I met them. They both had the same major, which I will also refrain from naming. (Aside: this would've been my senior year, too, but for the fact that I was changing my major and trying to "find myself." Again, I digress; that's a whole other post. . . .)

PJ was J's first girlfriend, and I gathered that she had initiated their relationship. Despite his looks, J proclaimed that he had been a "nerd" in high school, spending more time with his computer than with girls, and had never dated anyone until he met PJ. . . never even went to high school dances. Interesting information to me with my small-town background: I'd never known anyone who hadn't dated in high school that I wouldn't have considered a complete and total loser up to that time.

From the first conversation we had, J and I had a genuine rapport. At age 20, it was really amazing to me how easily we could talk about just about anything; first time in my limited life experience that this had happened to me. We seemed to have the same frames of reference, the same ideas about many things. I can't adequately put it into words, but I will say that even now, at age 36, I could count on the fingers of one hand the number of times I have hit it off with someone--on a friendship level--right off the bat like I did with J. I don't think my experiences have been that unique; I think connecting with someone so easily and so early is rare. In some ways, it was almost as if we had grown up together.

It quickly became clear to me that there was a much greater affinity between J and me than there had ever been between PJ and me. I genuinely enjoyed his company. This feeling was all the more remarkable in that it arose with a friend's boyfriend; in college, I generally was glad if I could simply tolerate my friends' boyfriends. . . actually becoming friends with them was usually too much to hope for and out of the question.

Despite this connection I felt with J, I didn't at first have any romantic feelings toward him. After all, he was PJ's boyfriend. There are rules about these things. And as my feelings for him evolved, I assumed that because the two of them were in a committed relationship, the point would be moot even if I did like him as more than a friend.

Fall semester slipped into spring, and I continued to spend lots of time with PJ & J. My two absent friends returned to school, and they became casual friends with J & PJ, too; one of the friends even rented a room in PJ's house for a while. We all did the typical kinds of things college students do together in groups: we went bowling, out to bars, hung out and ordered pizza, etc.

Two events from that spring semester stand out in my mind. PJ planned to sell her house when she graduated, so by April she was fixing it up to put on the market; she stayed at J's apartment for a few days once while it was being painted. I called J's apartment to talk to PJ--I had never called him before, didn't even know the number until she went to stay there. When I called, she wasn't there. . . but instead J & I talked on the phone for about half an hour. That conversation was the first one-on-one conversation the two of us ever had. During that talk, J hinted--though he didn't come right out and say--that he didn't see a long-term future for him with PJ. Hmmmm . . . .

The other event that stands out is this: J & I were hanging out at PJ's house during finals week. We had finished our exams and were in the typical post-exams celebratory mood PJ still had another test she was studying for. At some point, our chatting & exuberance started to bug PJ; she suggested that if we were going to talk while she was trying to study, we should do it elsewhere.

I guess it didn't occur to J or me that what PJ really meant was that we should each go home. Instead, we went to a local "open all night" restaurant and talked for hours. It was during this talk that J told me outright what he had hinted about on the phone in April: graduation would be the end of his relationship with PJ. If I recall his words correctly, their relationship would "die a natural death" when they both moved to different cities, about 1400 miles apart. He preferred to end it this way, rather than have a confrontation. (In retrospect, if I heard this now, I'd think a guy was a total wimp for choosing this approach; then, I just thought J was trying to avoid unnecessary drama.)

After graduation, J and I didn't keep in touch. This was before the days of everyone having and using email, before the days of cell phones. In order for us to have contacted one another, we would've had to either put pen to paper and written a letter, or payed for a (not cheap) long distance phone call. He drifted out of my life, and though I never forgot him, I didn't think much about him. I had lots of other things to occupy me.

PJ and I did keep in touch, after a fashion. While J had taken a job in the same state where we all went to college--albeit three hours' drive away--PJ had moved several states away to live near a childhood friend of hers. We exchanged an occasional postcard or letter. Though we had each other's phone numbers, we seldom called.

Right after Thanksgiving, a little over 6 months after they had graduated, PJ called and asked if I would go visit J the next time I was in the city where he lived. (I visited there occasionally because I had other friends and my stepsister living there.) PJ said she was concerned that J was working too much and not taking time to be social and enjoy life. She gave me J's phone number and asked me to call him.

I called J soon after that. When he called me back a couple of days later, we had a great chat. All that rapport I'd felt when he was still in college with me and we were hanging out regularly was still there. We made plans to see one another when I would be in town in mid-January.

You can probably guess by now where this is going. J and I did get together in January, and during that visit, it became clear to me that he was attracted to me. . . . he tried, in a less-than-artful way, to put the moves on me, but didn't quite follow through, and nothing happened. When I returned to school, I sent him a Valentine's Day card telling him in no uncertain terms that I had feelings for him, too. He followed that card up with a phone call, and soon we were talking on the phone 3 or 4 nights a week and planning a weekend together in mid-March to celebrate our respective birthdays together (in addition to everything else we had in common, our birthdays were also 4 days apart).

J and I had a short-lived but passionate long-distance relationship beginning from that February phone call and lasting until after Easter. In addition to hours and hours on the phone, we spent three extremely memorable weekends together. In my naivete, I thought he was The One.

I cannot bring myself to write about why things didn't work out; suffice it to say that we both made mistakes that are typical of two young, inexperienced people. Things ended badly; I screamed at him over the phone for a good ten minutes while he was out of town for work, staying in a hotel in a remote corner of Arizona. He silently took my (deserved) abuse and made no replies except to acknowledge he'd heard me. He returned some of my belongings the following week with a letter apologizing for having hurt me, expressing his hope that some day I would be able to look back on our time together fondly, and telling me how much fun he had with me.

After the pain of our break-up had subsided, a few months later, I called J once when I was in his city. We couldn't see each other on that occasion, but I remember that he sent me a Christmas card that year and a graduation card when I (finally) finished college the following spring. He took me out to lunch that summer when I was in town to visit friends. We talked once on the phone shortly after I'd gotten my first "real" job in a small town about 80 miles from the city where he lived. During that phone conversation, he mentioned that he was dating someone. Shortly after that, I started dating someone myself; when my new boyfriend and I moved in together a few months later, he asked that I cease contact with J and I complied.

Over the years, I thought of J often, for several reasons. Of all the men I've dated, he was the closest to my "ideal" partner. The brevity of our dating relationship and the drama with which it ended also made him memorable. And frankly, the sex we had was exceptionally good. I can honestly say that I've never been with anyone better since. I have had a couple of experiences that equaled him, but none that excelled him. I am a little ashamed to admit it. . . but on occasions in my life when I have felt the need to fantasize about someone I've actually been with. . . J has been one of my most frequent fantasies. I figured he was safe to fantasize about because I'd never see him or speak to him again.

I always assumed that J had married and had a family, as most people do by their mid-30's. As use of the internet became more prevalent in the past 5-6 years, I had google'd him from time to time. I knew that he had left his first post-college job to go work for a biotech firm and later moved to Washington, DC, to work for a large, multinational investment firm.

And that's where things stood with J and me until the first week of June of this year. . . . when I realized that J had been searching for me and we got in touch via email. And I found out that--surprise, surprise--he was moving to Phoenix.

If you've read this blog, you pretty much know the rest. Maybe my obsession with J and "what might happen" is a little easier to understand. . . . given this history. I've long thought of J as my "one that got away." It's very seldom in life that we get a second chance at these things.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Wait: my life *is* a movie


I have had an interesting and fun weekend. It feels really weird to be sitting home in my pajamas on a Monday morning. . . but weird in a good way. Kinda makes me wish I had taken more than a week off between jobs so I could have more days like this. LOL

Friday was an emotional day for me at the old job. The staff & attorneys on my trial team threw me a potluck breakfast. I got some very sweet gifts from people, too, including a card that made me verklempt from the woman who was my secretary for my first 15 months up there. I do believe that making this job change is the right thing for me, on many levels, but it's hard to leave people you've known and grown fond of over the past few years. Particularly when I know that it is highly likely that I won't be seeing these folks again. If I were staying in Tucson, that might be different, but it is what it is.

Friday evening, a lot of attorneys--both from my office and a few from the defense bar--showed up for happy hour to send me off. It was really fun. I had quite a bit to drink. First time in a long time I have gotten drunk. :)

In the past couple of months, I had developed a little crush on a friend I will call F. I have known F since he was a prosecutor in our office; he started just a couple of months before I did. Considering I started dating SL just two months after starting that job, I had never thought of F in anything but a friendly way until recently. I don't know that he is someone I would want to date under normal circumstances--he is a very nice person, but has some baggage, including the fact that he is a divorced/single dad of a 5-year-old daughter--but given that I am moving away very shortly, I thought it might be fun to have a brief fling with him.

Although I had had this crush for a couple of months, I couldn't have done anything about it until recently: F is a defense attorney now and was representing a defendant I was prosecuting. However, now that I have ended my employment at the office, there is no longer any conflict in my pursuing a. . . ahem. . . romantic relationship with F.

F came to happy hour and actually stuck around after the majority of people had left. After 9:00, the group was down to just F, my friend E, my roommate M, and me. M and I had been strategizing earlier in the week about how I could manage to hook up with F. LOL She talked with me in the bathroom when we left our original watering hole and headed to a different bar across the street with suggestions about how to "close the deal."

But I just wasn't feelin' it. Don't get me wrong: I still found F attractive, and I was enjoying his company. . . but I just wasn't getting the vibe that he was interested in me. M was like "why else would he still be hanging out with us if he weren't into you?" But I was unsure and just didn't want to press the issue, despite the fact that I had had quite a bit to drink. M told me I was a chicken, and I conceded that she might be right.

Well, on the drive home, though I was still drunk (or maybe BECAUSE I was still drunk), I decided to text message F and tell him I was interested in him. (Aye, aye, aye. Let no one claim that alcohol does not adversely affect one's ability to think clearly and make good decisions.) On Saturday morning, he responded to my text and told me that he was flattered by my interest, but didn't have romantic feelings for me and hoped we could still be friends. And, oh, by the way. . . he has a crush on my roommate.

M just about died when I relayed this information to her. She first was concerned that my feelings would be hurt (they weren't), then felt really stupid that she had spent all of Friday night trying to figure out how to get me into bed with this guy who, as it turns out, was interested in her the whole time. LOL

To top things off, F text-messaged me last night, hoping to talk to me about his crush on M. (I wouldn't have been opposed to talking with him about it. . . but M arrived home right as he called, so clearly we couldn't discuss the situation then.)

Well, I suppose my life is nothing if not eventful and unpredictable. I don't know too many women who could be telling someone they'd like to hook up with them on a Friday night and by Monday be helping them to figure out how to date a friend of theirs. LOL

My mom has been telling me for years that my life is not a Hollywood movie. Nonetheless, I couldn't help thinking that this whole situation was a bit reminiscent of the Elton/Tai/Cher triangle in the movie Clueless. (For any who haven't seen Clueless. . . main character Cher thinks she is making progress in trying to get her friend Elton together with new girl Tai. . . but Elton really wants Cher and thinks that she shares his interest.)

I've finally arrived at the conclusion that Mom's half right. My life *is* like a movie. It's just that it's actually more like a dark-toned indy flick (think Chasing Amy) rather than one of your happy-ending blockbuster romantic comedies or chick flicks. No chance Meg Ryan is gonna play the lead in THIS story. LOL

I have to say that I have gotten a lot of amusement out of this situation (after my very short-lived and mild feeling of disappointment upon first receiving F's text). I can't remember the last time I've laughed so much about something. It's actually been quite entertaining for me. . .

I spent most of the rest of the weekend doing fun stuff and just relaxing. I thought about starting my packing several times, but never actually acted on that impulse. I took Sebastian on a play date to the dog park early Saturday morning, where he rolled in a pit of mud and generally got himself filthy; he literally had mud everywhere but on his muzzle, even in his ears. Saturday night, I went to a showing of The Sound of Music at a beautifully restored historic theatre in downtown Tucson with B, my former paralegal.

In the midst of all this activity, I still found time to relax and read, and to talk with J on the phone for over an hour and a half. I still don't know where that is going, but I am really enjoying my friendship with him. Because of the combination of our shared history, juxtaposed with the many years that we were out of touch, there is a strange mix of the familiar and the unexplored there.

I cannot pinpoint precisely when it happened, but some time in the past week or so, I have undergone a sort of mental shift about my relationship with J. I am no longer obsessing about him and "what might happen;" I am just enjoying the relationship for what it is. . . which at this point is simply a nice, unique friendship. He is someone with whom I have so much in common and with whom I have always had a wonderful rapport. (I will concede that it is much easier to set aside lustful feelings for someone when you are only talking to him via phone, email, and text, versus seeing him in person. . . so I can't guarantee that this shift will be of a long duration. LOL)

Assuming I get back from Vegas as scheduled and am not too tired--and if his parents don't arrive in Phoenix earlier than expected--we are going to get together for dinner on Friday when I fly back. I'm looking forward to seeing him again. And despite our 2-hour lunch and Saturday's long phone conversation, I still don't feel that we've even scratched the surface of things to talk about. Regardless of what happens, that's gotta count for something. It certainly beats the hell out of starting anything with someone new. At this point, I am in a mindset to cherish good conversation over sex anyway. Good conversation just seems so much harder to find.

Sunday I took my CASA child M to the children's museum and to Petsmart to buy a toy for Sebastian (at her request). I hadn't seen M for about 6 weeks, so it was good to see her and spend some time with her. She is doing well, and I'm very happy about that. Sunday evening, I got a wild hair and decided to actually cook a meal from scratch. . . something that I only do about 3-4 times a year. I tried out a new recipe for chicken breasts stuffed with green chile and cheese, and it was delicious!

Today I have to go to the dentist at 1:00 to get a filling . . . gotta get that done before I no longer have dental insurance. . . but otherwise have nothing else I have to do . It's nice to be at leisure!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Communications blackout


I felt very "snacky" last night for some reason. I think maybe I am not eating enough vegetables. After having dinner, I was still hungry, so I had a substantial snack, followed by a bowl of oatmeal a couple of hours later. I hadn't eaten my full complement of food during the day, so I don't think I really did much damage. . . . and maybe failing to eat all my food throughout the day contributed to my munchies. Not sure. I couldn't quite tell if it was mental, hormonal, physiological, or what.
I have an apartment in Phoenix now! I am moving on July 28th. (I will be staying with KC for the first week of work and moving that following Saturday.) I think I will be happy with the place. It is in central Phoenix, in an urban setting, but with lots of safety features. It is quite close to my friend KH & her husband and about a 15 minute drive from work and from KC's house. The apartment is huge: over 1400 sq ft, and it's only a 2-bedroom. My living room furniture will be wholly inadequate to fill the living room. But that's cool. . . . gives me an excuse to shop.
I actually own very little furniture and stuff because when SL and I moved in together, we combined households and both got rid of things. I see a run to Ikea in my future.
I am trying not to think about J. I have resolved not to contact him between now and when I return from my Vegas trip on 7/20. We exchanged a few text messages over the weekend--both initiated by me. I am proud of the self-control I am exercising in not contacting him. . . 2 days and counting, LOL. We all know what it's like when you try NOT to think about something, though. . . . it's constantly on your mind then! If I told you right now "don't think about polar bears," the first thing likely to pop into your head is an image of a big white bear.
The only real way to NOT think about something is to be totally mentally focused on something else. . . my mind is never going to be a blank, right? Unfortunately, work no longer requires much focus, since I am leaving on Friday. And the other things in my life don't really require a lot of focused thought/concentration.
Ah well. I just have to keep controlling myself at least if I can't stop obsessing. . . . . over this thing that isn't even a thing and might never be a thing. LOL
I'm psyched about my trip to Vegas! KC is going with me so I won't have to be alone. We are leaving a week from tomorrow and just going for a couple of days. I got robbed of my trip to Vegas when I didn't marry SL, so now I'm making up for it.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Good weigh-in last night

My "official" weight at Jenny Craig on Thursday evening was 214.0, for a total of 20.6 lbs lost. Not too shabby, considering the stress & transitions I have had in my life since starting Jenny Craig on April 10th. I know I could have lost quite a bit more if I had been more compliant with my planned menus & exercised more. . . but all things considered, I'll take it.
Hell, I figure if I could continue to lose at this pace, it'd only be about another 9-10 months until I was at my goal weight. At this stage, any time the scale is not moving up, I am satisfied with my progress.
Tomorrow is my trip up to Phoenix to look for an apartment. I am looking forward to getting something nailed down, but I must confess I am NOT looking forward to the process. I know it is going to be brutally hot in Phoenix--the forecast high is 109--and the prospect of shlepping around the city in that kind of heat is not appealing. Ah well. One of those necessary evils. I am super lucky that KC is willing to accompany me; what a great friend.
My hope is that once I have a date certain for moving, I will feel more inspired to sort & pack. I wish I could get the crew of Clean Sweep out to my house. . . that'd be great. But not gonna happen.
I was really tired most of today. My roommate & I stayed up late talking. . . mostly reminiscing about past relationships with men. It was a very fun chat, but it was really hard to come in to work this morning.
I had a priors trial & sentencing this morning for the last defendant I convicted at trial. He was sentenced to 13 years, so I was pretty excited about that. He was definitely deserving: this was his 6th felony conviction, and he has a criminal record dating back 23 years to age 14. The victim in the case was very happy with the outcome.
I have nothing planned for this evening. It'll be kind-of nice to just go home & veg. This week was fun & not uneventful, but exhausting. And I suspect I'll need extra energy to get through the apartment hunt tomorrow.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

All over the map

212.8 (really?)
I had a very enjoyable Independence Day yesterday. My lunch with J, which I have been stressing & obsessing about for at least a couple of weeks, went very well. It was great to see him; I really enjoyed our conversation. Physically, he is much the same. . . looks a little older and has changed his hairstyle, and that's about it. He doesn't seem to have changed much in general, actually. For fear of going off on a long tangent about my feelings about him, I will leave it at this: I am sure I will see more of him, but I have no idea where this is going to go. I know he wants to see more of me. . . I just don't know if it's for friendship or something more. . . and I don't even know if *he* knows at this point.
After my lunch with J--which, hello! I should so not have stressed over! Very typical of me--I went to a party at my friend C's house. The house was really lovely, and it was great to see C and spend some time with her. I also saw my very pregnant friend KH & her husband. Quite fun. The only downside was the heat--it was brutal. But that's Phoenix in July.
Work is eh. Now that I am coming down the home stretch, I really don't much feel like doing work. I guess this is what they call "short timer's syndrome." Ah well.
I have done absolutely zero to prepare for my upcoming move. I desperately need to start sorting and packing, but haven't been able to make myself do it yet. Grrrr. . . . I have so little self discipline, it's a miracle I've made it to this point in my life.
Weigh-in in 2 hours!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Wednesday holiday=weird

216.4 (thanks, Chinese food)

It seems really odd to have a holiday in the middle of a work week. I suppose because things are usually contrived to make Fridays or Mondays federal holidays. As a government employee, I am, of course, off tomorrow. It just feels strange.

I have started to feel a bit stressed about my upcoming move. I am starting a new job in another city in less than 3 weeks, and I have no idea where I'm going to live in that city! I haven't started packing at all. . . though God knows I should and I have a sh1tload for crap to sort through. . . I never fully unpacked from my move in mid-April.

I am going to drive up to Phoenix on Saturday and my best friend KC & I are going to spend all day looking at apartments. I hope to have something lined up before I drive home Saturday night.

Perhaps once I have a place lined up, I will feel more inclined to get on top of the sorting and packing. I am going to pay movers--because, let's face it, who wants to move ever, let alone in late July in southern Arizona--so I have an additional incentive to get rid of some crap before I move.

I can certainly stay with KC for a week or two (or three) if necessary. The only downside to that plan is that Sebastian can't stay there, as KC's dog doesn't like him. Sebastian could stay with my old roommate KW & her husband, but then we would be separated. That probably wouldn't affect Sebastian much, but it would make me sad. Plus, I couldn't impose Sebastian on KW indefinitely.

Anyway, putting off the move much longer than a week or two is just postponing the inevitable. It's not like I'm not eventually going to move to Phoenix, and it's not going to get any easier to do it if I wait longer.

I have my long-awaited lunch with J tomorrow. I am hoping for the best, and I have tried to prepare myself for the worst. It's just lunch, so I really should chill. Better to obsess over that than about my unplanned move, though, I guess. LOL

Aye, aye, aye.

Monday, July 02, 2007

My "brush with death" at the mall. . .

213.0 (nice)
I'm feelin' good about myself this morning. For the first time in weeks, I actually got up within 10 minutes of my alarm and took Sebastian for a little 15-minute walk around the neighborhood. It's surprising how just that little bit of exercise makes me feel more alert. . . and makes Sebastian more chill when I leave the house for work.
Had some excitement yesterday. I met two friends from work at a mall in a "nicer" part of town to shop for an outfit for my lunch with J on Wednesday. As we were trying to leave, people were running and screaming from the Dillard's department store. I heard someone yell "someone's shooting," and my friend says she heard gunshots. The two of us ended up "locked down" in the Godiva chocolates stores for 15-20 minutes because of the confusion. By the time we were finally allowed to leave the mall, there were police everywhere outside and news crews were filming.
My poor friend E nearly had a panic attack; she was very upset. Also, there was a huge line of cars in the parking lot, as everyone was evacuated and all the cars were trying to leave the mall at once. E was almost out of gas, so an additional anxiety for her. The whole thing was pretty crazy while we were stuck in the Godiva store; we really didn't know if some nutjob was on a shooting rampage or what.
In typical me fashion, after dropping E at her car, I calmly called my parents & sister to tell them what had happened, then continued on to Lane Bryant & DSW and finished my shopping. Blame it on all my years of working in hospitals in high stress, life/death situations. . . I am a major under-reactor in stressful situations. (Or maybe I really am "dead inside," as my sister likes to tell me.)
The shooting was in the news this morning. Apparently two people shot at each other in the Dillard's, which is just off the food court. A bullet grazed a bystander and two other people were injured. Police arrested two suspects and believe the shooting was gang-related.
On a tangent. . . . I did buy some cute clothes yesterday (after the shoot-out, lol). I'll be wearing a wrap style cotton blouse, black capris, some very cute strappy black sandals. I even bought a necklace and earrings to match. I think the outfit is flattering, but doesn't make me look like I'm trying to look good. . . which is perfect. I also bought a navy pair of capris in a similar style and four other tops. (OK, I went a little overboard. :) )
It's supposed to be 109 degrees today and 114 on Wednesday. Ugh. I'm sure Phoenix will be even hotter on Wednesday. What joy.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Moving down


I actually weighed 214.0 yesterday morning. I didn't believe it was an accurate weight, as I stayed up late, slept in late, and had consumed a beer the night before. . . I figured I was dehydrated and out of whack.

Today I awoke at a decent hour, and I spent all day yesterday eating healthfully and rehydrating. So I trust that I really weigh 215 today. Wow. I'm glad to see the scale is moving down once again.

I had a completely lazy day yesterday. I did nothing productive. I slept late, watched the movie Seabiscuit in the afternoon (I'd bought it to watch in late April, but hadn't seen it yet), read a book, took a nap, surfed the internet, then rounded out the day by watching some old episodes of Friends.

I certainly had/have things I could be doing. . . but I figure I am coming up on a very busy period, between changing jobs and moving to another city. I wasn't sure when I'd have the opportunity again to just laze around, so I took it. And I feel good about it. :)

Today I plan to do some of the household chores I neglected yesterday. At 2:00 I am meeting friends L & E at the mall to buy a suitable outfit for my lunch with J on Wednesday. I know I've been a bit of a freak about the whole J thing. . . but I think it's a natural female impulse to want to look one's best for an ex-boyfriend. Because I have gained a considerable amount of weight since the last time he saw me (about 50 lbs), I'll have an uphill battle to impress him with my looks. So I'm going to put some extra care and work into my appearnce.

I think I'm putting my meeting with J into a more realistic perspective. Let's face it: regardless of what happens at our lunch, my life won't be changed. I'll still have the same friends, same family, same dog, and same new job if he disapproves of me. Plus, *I* may not approve of *him*. Who knows? I don't think I've changed much since I was in love with him at age 22. . . but I've probably changed more than I realize, and he has probably changed some, too.

My initial reaction to hearing from him again after so many years was typical of me in many ways--though I like to present myself as rational & logical, I'm secretly quite a romantic--but reality has set in. I plan to look my best, enjoy myself, and expect nothing.

Hard to believe it's July 1st! We are halfway through 2007 now. I'd be coming up on my 3-month wedding anniversary if I'd gone ahead and married S. So weird to think about. My daily life will be completely different in a month than it is now. Life is strange.