Entries compiled for the proposal

There is something deep and abiding about the appreciation I felt for her when I saw her again this afternoon, walking through the doors to the UT Stadium wherein they had an exhibit of cadavers stripped of skin and stuck in different poses exhibiting the various systems underneath. Yes, I invited this lady A to one of those Bodies exhibits that’s been touring the country. Can you believe it? After seeing her in church a few times, and having coffee, I felt okay with asking her over anyone I’ve known at United Way for years.

There was this feeling of affirmation, “yeah, she really is pretty sexy and pretty in that skirt, her body and face and eyes are really attractive,” but at the same time I just felt like it was natural for us to be together—not some hot-blooded lust that screws up my words or makes me want to force the untenable.

I talked with A pretty much non-stop after we got started touring the exhibit, and we didn’t really stop until after we’d slowly let the conversation meander through an extended dinner, and she’d driven me back to my parked car through heavy traffic and construction.

After feeling uncertain about whether I was supposed to hug her or not at the end of the previous date, I decided that even though we were awkwardly positioned in her car, she was going to get a hug whether she liked it or not. I then paused to add more emphatic words to the oft-carelessly thrown “I had lots of fun,” because I wanted to stress to her that I REALLY enjoyed her company.

***

A is beautiful when she lets go with genuine laughter. She’s arrestingly pretty when I see her again after having not seen her in a day or so. And, all of her quirks and idiosyncrasies are adorable. I don’t know if she’s a shy, socially awkward person like me or just an incredibly unique lady in the face of all these women who want to be like contestants on the TV show the Bachelor.

And, I was just stunned by how completely and utterly I wanted to fall in love with her while staring into her eyes in between kisses.

Yes, we stood there kissing in the parking lot of the Alamo Drafthouse.

After seeing each other three times in church, once at a coffee shop, once at a museum exhibit of real cadavers, once for a dinner (following the cadavers exhibit), once at the movies and twice around the trail—all within a four-week time span—we were confident that both of us were ready to break down the walls and start smooching in a parking lot.

It felt so damn good, I must say. A looked even more gorgeous to me each time we paused from kissing to stand forehead to forehead. Wow, I thought.

***

And, then, there’s A. The first single lady I met at the church—on the second Sunday I was there, she walked around to the other side of the pew to sit next to me. She was immediately agreeable to the suggestion of coffee, and accepted an invite to look at cadavers-as-art at a sports medicine exhibit. She turned out to be a runner. She’s an English major. She has a rich and varied inner life, deep intellectual curiosity, has a cool job and is getting a Master’s for a fascinating subject. She’s gorgeous, she smells good but isn’t heavy of perfume. She dresses nice. She has a sharp eye for taking great photos. She’s a brilliant conversationalist.

She has an animal-friendly license plate. She likes Taffy, and Taffy likes her. She’s not a neat freak, but has a cozy, inviting place.

She kisses very well.

I am having a hard time right now seeing myself with anyone else, ever.

***

I hate saying it so early, but I really think A could be the one. There is absolutely none of the reservation, doubt or fear that I felt in the past relationships. No moment of heart sinking once I see her in a different light or environment. Nothing of the “what the hell did I get myself into,” or “is she really too good to be true?” kind of questioning that often goes on, even during the best phase of the relationship. I am coming into this with eyes wide open, realizing full well that nobody’s perfect, and that she’ll have some flaw that I don’t like, some things we disagree on. But, then again, I’m also just relying heavily on my heart, and what its telling me, whether I’m staying with her after church until I have a moment to ask her to coffee, or taking the plunge and grabbing her hand in the movie theater.

When we are together on my sofa, I feel 100% complete, a kind of completeness I don’t know that I’ve ever felt before.

***

I look at A as she’s approaching me, and it’s like I’m rediscovering all over again just why I like her so much. Inside, I have no reservations, anxiety, doubt. I’m not overly full of the eager schoolboy crush, but no part of her says to any part of me, “maybe you should be thinking twice.”

With A, it’s like I’d been trying to put various puzzle pieces together that by most accounts appeared to match the right shapes and colors, only to discover what it’s really like when two pieces are meant to fit together.

I hope this feeling lasts…A appears by all accounts to be everything I was looking for.

…and you will be asking her to marry you in 12 hours.

It’s like a lot of things in life–you can look at it one way, and it’s filled with epic importance; look at it another way, and it’s just a thing you’re supposed to do–like go to college, pay your taxes, and work to avoid starving on the streets. You’ve had the “big talk” with both of her parents, and you’ve spoken with her a million times about this. She won’t be shocked, and should be mostly pleased. You’ve asked God and the Universe a million times each day for the past eight months you’ve dated her: is she the one? Each time they’ve answered: yes, she’s it.

Regrettably, almost everyone you know is busy working on their second or third marriage. You will not, if it comes to that. If it comes to that desperate moment when it all falls apart and wasn’t meant to be, and she leaves you for a dashing, handsome, young, wealthy professor–you’ll quietly pocket your misfortune and take care of your dad until he dies and you can join the Trappist monastery.

This is the culmination of choices you made starting about a year ago. First, to look for a sofa, then purchase a home, all the while looking for a better job, and finally, to church to meet someone special. You can survey it now from a 360 view, and see that while there are a million other possibilities, this is the only one that you were meant to do this evening. The rest is up to God and the Universe.

And so, I continue my lifelong tradition of not writing much once life gets going again

And so, I continue my lifelong tradition of not writing much once life gets going again. I haven’t written much in the past couple weeks (or months) because life seemed to suddenly be going as I’d wanted it to at the beginning of the year.

Would I be stretching it too much to say that 2010 has been the best year of my life? All of the bad that happened, happened to people not directly connected to me by any friendship or familial relationship of death, with maybe the exception of my uncle J dying. J had made an effort, though, to pretty much only criticize me or belittle me when he had anything to say, and clearly didn’t care much for the way I chose to live my life.

I hardly cried at all when he left the earth. I cried more for BN and his family. TW? Someone I thought had my back for years at MCE, as I’d had hers, until that last review where she was asked to write a review of my work and she completely stabbed me in the back. Shed a tear for her? Not so much.

It was sad the way LP got canned, and sad the way her replacement got used. It sucked being me through the first nine months of the year when speaking about professional lives. AT was a nasty incompetent bitch of a replacement to that…LP who was much the same, but young and incompetent in a different way.

It was sad to see A, who I once thought was better than who she turned out to be, end up giggling day after day with the hipster W.

And, it was sad to see that so many of my friends on Facebook are committed Atheists, full of hatred of God and the godly.

But, I left behind so much, too. The pity parties and drinking, the toxic workplace, the apartment with so much baggage, skeletons and history, the Austin life as I once knew it.

And, surprisingly, or maybe not, D became my friend yet again…on Facebook…that strange application that is primarily a friend graveyard.

K’s virgin bride–once a seventeen year old girl when he popped the question–left him for another man.

I did two hours of freelance work for MCE.

I went to New York City.

I met the love of my life at church one Sunday in April, started dating her three weeks later, and am popping the question in five days.

I went up to Dallas last week, and survived the future in-law family gauntlet. I want to sit down and do a thorough compare and contrast with past visits of this nature that went horribly bad, but maybe that will be when I’ve the luxury of time to ponder such things.

2010 Post-Mortem — 2011 Goals, challenges.

2010 Post-Mortem — 2011 Goals, challenges.

2009-2010 interests
Viruses, medicine, chemistry, physics, math, finance, diaries, architecture, art, nyc, then art, architecture, math.

2005 saw an exceptional rate of personal growth due to NLP and focus on becoming one thing.

2010 realized a similar rate of growth due to focus and return to the church.

2011
Challenges:
C–no career, life calling anywhere here. A nice place to sit and catch my breath but no deeper fulfillment–nor would I want one from them in the way I attempted to get it from MCE in 05

Aging–joints no longer respond well to running renaissances

Engagement/marriage to A then her future attempts to find work following graduation. Where to live? Is the condo sufficient temporarily?

Dad–aging–how to maintain a good relationship with him in spite of his increasing self absorption. Similar challenge with R–

Keeping a sense of magic about life, freshness and novelty without it turning into chaos and misdirection.

Getting more focused on particular avenues of interest without having them turn into tedium.

Saving money for future desirable things — trip to Europe, new computer, etc.

Recommendations–
Abstracting areas of interest more as “metas” to inform personal growth.

Keeping C and clients at arm’s length.

Keeping a stricter schedule.

—————

Other 2010 events that require deeper exploration for their meaning:
Why UW? It seemed like a sign when I got the job there–a non-profit just down the road from where Mom died with a large group of people that seemed welcoming and ready to create a sense of community.

————–

The emphasis someone like J places on being learned and capable of crafting clever arguments for reality constructs–his constant stream of spite for people of wisdom and simpler statements of truth.

The deeper things you can glean from following the heart and listening for truth outside of words–in art, experience, non-verbal communication.

The atheist humanist seems bent on building a house of cards with words that can somehow hold muster as proof for being a good, decent human. He cherry picks “good atheists” or at least non-violent ones from history…

I can’t really say much to someone like him. Or a guy like SR, who has fanatically latched on to a radical right/Libertarian sort of paradigm to prescribe next steps for humanity.

At this level, using words and cleverness and artificial constructs mean you are essentially trying to fight fire with fire.

Explore the deeper ways we harness truth, that men can’t usually find through books or scientific inquiry.

View lightly the Egelical babbling on Facebook, whether you agree with it or not. Ideas can stick to you, pull you in, twist you around and send you down wrong paths.

…in a room full of personalities carved perfectly square.

Your round little personality has been shaved away to fit any number of agendas, discussions, team goals and plans made by overlords with minds more nimble than yours could ever hope to be.

But, in this room, you now see the path upon which your remaining round edges will be set–a journey of carving to render you into four well-formed right angles for the proverbial and obligatory square hole.

…and the mountain is just too damn high.

You are the unformed man, the proto-man, the swirling morass of identities easily reassembled by whatever strange attractor might be in your vicinity. You are loved by those who love to look into the mirror, and hated by those who don’t. The mountain you thought you were halfway up now looks to be much higher than you first estimated. You’ve arrived at this too late in life, and you will spend the rest of your life being the junior member of this team or that.