Driving back from my hair appointment this morning the dreaded gas light came on so I stopped for gas. This is the most I have ever had to pay for a tank of gas. It is absurd! This fall I am trading in my gas guzzling SUV for an environmentally friendly hybrid.
For the past 4 or 5 years I have gone hiking with an amazing group of people on Wednesday nights. Well…let me clarify. Up until this year I have only made it hiking with them maybe 3 or 4 times each season. Lots of excuses why such as I was working in Provo which made it difficult to make it on time or I was dating a controlling a-hole who didn’t like me to go. Anyway, this year is different!
Our group leader is 76 years old! He knows almost every trail in Utah, or at least it seems that way. He sends out an email on Monday or Tuesday telling everyone where to meet. I am normally the youngest who goes. Most of the members are 15 to 30 years older than me, but I don’t care. We hike and talk and laugh and genuinely enjoy nature together. We start out hiking the lower trails and as the weather warms and the snow melts we move up higher in the mountains.
Yesterdays hike was about 5 miles. It was a fairly easy hike, not too much incline and the trail was well kept. The wildflowers were out in full bloom. Lots of yellow daisy looking flowers all over. We saw a lot of moose tracks on the trail but were not fortunate enough to see one. We did however see a few deer on the way back. Little white butts jumping across the meadows – so cute!
On this hike my mind was full. I just have so much going on and it was the perfect chance to think things through. Most of the hikers know each other a lot better than me so I am not drawn into too many long conversations, so it is easy to get lost in my own thoughts. Mainly I thought about Sven. Sigh. It is now just under 5 weeks until he gets here. I still do not know what the future holds for us, but that’s OK. I know that I am very excited to see him and that we will have a blast while he is her. I thought a lot about growing old. About independence versus a life long partner. Not too many in the group are married, but then again about half of the group is comprised of lesbians so they don’t really have that option per se (hopefully one day that will change.)
To be honest, right now I am really enjoying my independence and quite alone time. I don’t feel the need to hurry and settle down and reproduce. I once told my mother that maybe I am not the settling down type of girl. She, in her infinite wisdom, told me that I may feel that way now but (here is comes) one day I am going to wake up old and regret not having kids, and at that point it could be too late. I don’t know if she is right or not, knowing my luck she probably is. Damn the motherly intuition! But I have still have time. I don’t know that I have to have all the answers or know what I want right now. I am OK with just being me, exactly the way I am! It suits me to not have to please anyone else, I have spent too much of my life doing that.
One of the many things I love about Utah is it’s beauty. I can never get enough of it! So when my friend Zach invited me to come up camping to his favorite place up in the high Uintas I didn’t hesitate. I had never been there before but it was beautiful. It is about 1 1/2 hours from Salt Lake. You go up past Park City on towards Heber then keep going up and over the mountains and you are there! How’s that for directions?
We left Saturday afternoon and came home on Sunday so it was a short trip, but it was definitely worth it. There ended up being 6 of us who went up. We brought up Zach’s trailer which ended up being a very good thing because it rained off and on the whole time we were there. Luckily we were able to get a fire started and keep it going throughout the night. We made tin foil or “hobo” dinners which turned out super yummy! For those of you who don’t know what a hobo dinner is, let me explain what our variation was: You take a big strip of tinfoil and form it into a bowl of sorts. Take chunks of seasoned chicken, potatoes, carrots, onions, broccoli and whatever other vegis you like, put them all together in your tin bowl and wrap it in another 2 layers of foil and throw it on the coals of the fire. Turn every 10 minutes for about 40 – 50 minutes and tada! Dinner is done! Follow that up with some smoores and that’s how it’s done!
If anyone is interested in knowing the exact location, I can track that down for you. Sorry the pictures have a bit of a red glow to them…not really sure what happened there.
To all of my Sex In the City Fans: Have you ever wondered how Cary could write about her relationships so open and honestly when she knew that her partner could pick up the paper and read it? Do you think she edited what she said? Do you think it bothered the guy to have their intimate details written about? Maybe it helps to use code names like Mr. Big.
Recently one of my good friends told me that she is a commitment-phobe and that I am as well. My response was “duh! I could have told you that!”. Over the past 3 years since my divorce I have jumped from relationship to relationship. Never being single for longer than a month or two. I guess you could call me a serial monogamist. Each relationship lasts around 3-6 months. Then a sad dramatic break up. A month of going crazy. Date a bit and then WHAM! I’m in another relationship.
That is my pattern…up until recently.
I have now decided to be alone but in a committed relationship. How’s that for screwed up? I am dating a man who doesn’t live here. He doesn’t even live in this country! Let’s call him Sven. Now obviously there is a long story about the how and when we met (because this is round 2 for us). That story is not necessary for the point I am somehow going to try to get to. You see I am so afraid to truly commit that I choose to date someone who deep down I know the chances of us working out our are so incredibly slim, that I am comfortable with it. I have not seen him since March and will not see him again until the first of July. We talk and text everyday and that’s about it. I have complete freedom. I do what I want when i want without answering to anyone. This is the first time in my life that I have done that! I am getting the satisfaction of feeling independent and the security of being in a relationship.
So to psychoanalyze this a little further a large part of me says everything is great! Go with the flow. Whatever happens happens. Don’t get too invested and you’ll be OK. I convince myself that I am fine with it. Then there is the hopeless romantic side to me. Oh, I hate when she comes out! She believes in love and that things could work and that maybe, just maybe, he could be “the one”. She tries to convince me that I could really go through with moving away from my entire world to another country and a new exciting romantic life. My life could be just like a romantice comedy. “Take a chance on love” she whispers and flutters her eyelashes. Blah! Then my practicality and what I like to call my “scared shitless genes” kick in and convince me that it is best to call everything off right now before Sven flies here and I actually fall harder for him and get hurt. Because no one likes a broken heart!
Guess there is no way to shorten this story. Recently I was challenged with the acusation that I have never truly been alone for any substancial amount of time. Not liking where the conversation was going I stood my ground and said I am alone right now and it is starting to be a very substancial amount of time. But, ahh ha! I am put in my place because I am not alone. I have my security blanket of a relationship.
The reality is, at least in my mind, that being alone takes some time to master. And if this is my way of mastering it…well, there are worse thing that I could do. I care a great deal for Sven, and I know I would always regret it if I chickened out and didn’t see where this could go. Love (if that’s what it is), could actually win…right?
I feel very fortunate to have been raised in a loving home by supportive parents. This is not to say they are perfect, but they have always tried their very best to be supportive. Often times they do not agree with my decisions because they do not mesh with their religious beliefs, that of a Latter Day Saint. Sometimes my mother will let her disapproval show. Like when I wear a tube top that shows a bit more skin than she would like. She will just look at me, shake her head and say nothing. But I know, and she knows I know. All that said, I am fortunate. I have had my challenges in life (who hasn’t), and there was a period of time when I had “mommy issues”, but I can honestly say I have moved past that and feel blessed to live the life I leed.
In Utah, being a 27 (almost 28!) unmarried female with no children is a little rare. To a lot of the community I am an old maid. I mean what’s wrong with me? I’m not married with 2.5 kids? Somebody check her temp because she must not be well! I recently opened a facebook account and have started to be contacted by all the people I went to high school with. I am not exaggerating when I tell you that 90% of them are married with 1-2 kids. I am happy for them, but at the same time a little confused. All these amazing bright intelligent women go to college, get a degree, get married, have children and never work. I guess it can be disputed that being a mother is work or their “job” and I am sure it is. I don’t want to come across that this is not an important roll. I just don’t know that it is the roll for me. In Utah it seems to be all of the womens ultimate goal. For me however, having children is not my ultimate goal. More my if it happens down the road with the right person at the right time – great! If not, I’m ok.
I like my life. There is always room for improvement and it is far from perfect, but all things considered I have a good life! I have a good job in an industry that challenges me and I love. I have amazing genuine friends. I live in a place surrounded by beauty that constantly has the ability to take my breath away. My family is close (sometimes a little too close) and always there for me. I am financially stable…not rich or incredibly well off, but I have enough to get by and enjoy life. I have my independence and my freedom. What more could a girl ask for?