Yeah, so I had a rough few days. I kinda sorta freaked the fuck out, ranted about it to my friends and family, plumbed the depths of my body image issues, failed to get any work of consequence done, and considered and reconsidered breaking up with BFD for no logical reason.
To the world, I echo, um, what the fuck?
Today, things were good. Tuesday, things were better. They started to improve Monday night. Like once I finally put all of my teen-aged angst into my journal, it dissipated.
Usually, that’s an incredibly healthy exercise and all, except my journal is here — with all the craziness in full view. Yay.
The Body Image Thing
I scared myself about it to keep myself from doing something really dumb. In reality, I eat very well. Nothing processed, nothing artificial. I eat a frittata or a slice of crustless quiche every morning (and often for lunch), I eat a lot of spinach, broccoli and baby greens, I eat a lot of cheese and nuts, and I drink kefir and cranberry/blueberry smoothies. 90% of the food I eat I prepare myself. What scares me is when I look in the mirror and think I am fat. When I think I am fat while wearing size 2 jeans.
I have a lot of trip wires set up because I know it’s easy to slide into an unhealthy position. I am very open about my issues because it helps me differentiate the thing I see in my head from the reality. I have been through this before. Because of the industries in which I work, my issues are not unusual. In fact, I am not considered particularly thin, which suuuuucks. But what can you do.
I am going to continue to be honest when I am having issues. I just need to be vigilant to remind myself not to lose more weight, no matter how I feel. Soon, I am going to start training with BFD, so I will focus on what my body can do, rather than how it looks. (Or try to anyway . . . )
The Money Thing
At last night’s fundraiser, I was with my best friend Jerk Face and we were talking to an old friend of ours about BFD. The old friend said, I know something interesting about him, but what is it? . . . so I gave her the prior career. She said, no, that’s not it. JF leaned in and said, he’s rich! She said, no, that’s not it, but cool. It was about the sport, of course. It makes him interesting to other people who couldn’t care less about his money, which is everyone but my friends who are obsessed with the economic disparity between us.
We do have an economic disparity, a chasm deeper and wider than any other couple I know. Essentially, I make no money (I am self-employed and much of my business is contingent); he retired in his 30s and does not need to work, but does.
My poverty is somewhat self-imposed. I am a lawyer, I have paying work, and I have some big important projects starting shortly. But essentially, for now, thanks to the downturn, I make no money. It’s why BFD hired me for a contingent project for him, paying me significantly better than market, and why I am anxious to close it. If I can close, I could make enough money for the next year. If I close the bigger deal, it’s 3-4 years. Now, granted, I don’t spend much money, but that’s not bad for relatively little work for me.
If you did not know I was poor, which I totally am, you would not realize the economic disparity. But I drive his car because I cannot afford one. I bought my very beautifully tailored clothes either years ago, or on deep discount at Last Call. Because I have style, expensive jewelry and accessories (thanks to family and smart shopping), and good makeup and hair, I can pull off poverty without looking poor. If I had money, the details of my relationship with BFD would not change much. He would still pay for everything all the time. We would just be more comfortable and more confident in moving forward. Money is a threshold issue, but not a substantive issue: I am expected to pay for my own car, not my own mansion.
It’s funny, we don’t view the financial disparity as anything other than a fact of our lives, and there are no class issues, which affect every couple we each know. We are similarly educated, raised in small prosperous towns, the children of privilege, though not wealth (at least not at our parents’ generation). My family is significantly more successful than his financially, but his father is so accomplished it trumps mere money. I cannot mention it here because it’s that outable, and anyone we mention it to is a little thrown. (I found out about it after our first date via an email from BFD who confirmed to his friends what we’d all heard on the news that morning. And yes, it did make me think, “. . . well, not a bad addition to the gene pool.”)
Our personal philanthropy is in the same two areas . . . though his giving dwarfs mine, I did just drop a significant amount on a table for an event, although the minimum table he’s expected to buy for his fall gala is 10x what I paid. (Ha.) Assuming we’re still together, I have two fabulous dresses from which to choose, thanks to Neiman’s Last Call. Next week, I will be attending something with him, so I reminded him to get the pass they offered to him (to encourage new active participation). He reminded me that because he now sits on the board, he felt it unseemly. Instead, he’s buying the pass for me. Of course.
I am hopeful that the my days of self-imposed poverty will soon end. Well, they will end one way or another . . . I am hopeful I can close BFD’s project out soon.
The Social Thing
This morning, I received two emails from BFD . . . one to the people he’s been training with (three of whom are my friends) and then to me and those three friends. The first email was a blind copy thanking them for their participation and inviting them to a dinner. The second email was an invite for my three friends and us to all socialize together, which we’ve not done. The friends are not friends with each other, but all male friends of mine. Because I am still a bit insecure about everything, I thought, hmmm, did he really intend to invite me, too? Or is he just letting me know? I really thought about this. It’s INSANE. Of course he would invite me to hang out with my guy friends. Otherwise, he would have blind copied me.
But the big thing is that BFD is trying to make friends and socialize with people outside of business and sports. That’s a big deal. Putting down roots, making friends. I carefully selected two of them because I thought he’d they’d be good for his training . . . and I thought they’d have things in common. I was right and it’s worked really well. He picked the third — Jerk Face, of all people — who was a disappointment, but BFD, thinking JF is my best friend, is almost desperate to connect with him.
All of the guys, except Jerk Face, responded back immediately that they’re in for socializing. It’s adorable, really, and I am interested to see what it’s like when we all hang out together.
Last night, I went out to the fundraiser and then ended up hanging out with my old friend, W and JF, and a couple of new girlfriends. It was so much fun. We did stupid girl stuff and they demanded to see pictures of BFD, who they’ve not met. The one I’ve known the longest is a doctor who helped me get a referral for him last fall, so she’s been aware of him since then. I don’t have photos of him, but they had an open laptop, so I showed them and my old friend his pictures from facebook: the squealed responses: o”h my god, he’s so HOT.” The doctor, who is older than I am by a couple of years and dating one of my exes, said, how much younger is he? Uh, he’s older. Wow, he looks really young! Yeah, he does.
It’s nice to be making more female friends. Most of my close friends were married a few years ago and that just makes things tough. Plus, K has been gone for business for weeks!
After my major freakout, things have been improving. I am feeling better about everything. I just feel more stable in my life. My head feels clearer. There are positive things happening. This is shaping up to be a decent week, and groundwork is being laid for good things to come.
Free Will Astrology‘s read for this week was particularly timely:
Nietzsche’s dictum might be useful for you to keep in mind right now, Leo: “If it doesn’t kill you, it’ll make you stronger.” Since I’m very sure that the turbulent waters through which you’re navigating will not kill you, I’m looking forward to all the ways this journey will upgrade your confidence and enhance your power. But there’s more to be gained, beyond what Nietzsche formulated. It’s also true that if it doesn’t kill you (which it won’t), it will make you wilder and kinder and smarter and more beautiful.