This adventure in relationship has taken me to places I did not know existed and for which there is no guidebook – uncharted territory for my soul. It’s much harder to write about these inward journeys, especially as they are unfolding and before I can make out the walls and shapes that make up these dark caverns.
So, sorry about my time away.
It’s not you. It’s me.
Relationships, which have always been difficult for me (are they easy for anyone?), are easier on the road – with no expectation of “forever”, one is free to enjoy momentary romance in all it’s shallow and delicious glory. Like cotton candy, it’s all sweet with no substance. Satisfaction is fleeting and one is left feeling sick while holding a paper cone that moments before held such enticing spun sugar.
Long-term solo travel keeps one distracted with itineraries, planning, moving and exploring. Dark corners of the psyche can be forgotten momentarily while more pressing survival concerns are attended to.
In Mariposa, things have changed. This relationship demands my attention and stretches me beyond my limits of comfort regularly. It feels like God has thrown one cream pie in my face after another, laughing all the while. Can she take it?! What’s she made of?
I’ll show you God.
Compromises and negotiations are daily fare. How much bending is too much bending? How much am I willing to give up? How much am I gaining? Am I attending to my dreams? Is this my dream? These are all questions that come up. Answers are forthcoming.
The Greatest Battle
For those of you that don’t know me personally, I’ve held a secret in shame. I’ve been a slave. The freedom that you’ve seen has been an illusion.
I’ve been hopelessly and seriously addicted to cigarettes for the last 28 years. And this is no child’s play addiction – this is the type of addicted that wants to smoke in the middle of the night, that can not imagine walking, talking, writing, celebrating, mourning, eating, playing, or working without a cigarette in hand. It’s been a misery to maintain.
This demon entered my life when I was a teenager, forging out my own identity as a creative and free spirit. How ironic that this very addiction has left me now, at age 44, breathless, dependent, anxious, and aging rapidly.
I tried so many times to quit, only to be defeated in two to three days.
I have overcome so much but not this.
But now this.
With the support of Bear, I have kicked tobacco. Using a blend of non-addictive herbs to smoke when I feel desperate, and nicotine gum occasionally, I have reached Day 21 of the process. It’s the biggest challenge I have ever faced. Each breath I take gets me one step closer to freedom. True freedom.
I’ve wrestled with demons during sleepless nights. Rage like I have never known has enveloped me in a dark cloud for days at a time. Moods have changed as quickly as desert sands. Spiny, seemingly intractable tentacles of this demon have been ripped from my cells excruciatingly. Painful emotions have swept through my body stinging me in prickly effervescent waves.
There isn’t a thing that I used to do without smoking being a part. Writing in particular, was never done without a full pack of cigarettes by my side. I have struggled to write because of this process. So you see…
It’s not you. It’s me.
This post is another step in my journey away from the demon. I am walking into the light and for now it is blinding and painful and scary. But, I’m walking anyway. One step at a time.
What demon is secretly holding you back from your best life?