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Monday, October 5, 2015

We'll Always Have Newport- Chapter 1- Reunited and It Feels So...Unexpected

(November 2009)

His  Facebook friend request arrives out of the blue. In fact, it takes me a moment to recall exactly who he is. I click on his photo and it reveals an older version of the tatted up skateboarder whom I had   tutored all those years ago.

A cursory glance at his profile conveys that the former punk rocker has traded in his skateboard for a successful career in the Navy. 
 I think back on my own path since college and shake my head in amazement.  Since graduating from college, I have worked as a singer, administrative assistant, paralegal, contract administrator, and as a part-time restaurant host. I know all too well the way in which life can take you down unexpected alleyways.

Almost immediately after accepting his friend request,  I receive a notification of an email message sent to my account from the Sailor.
This sparks off a flurry of emails between us which culminates in the exchange of telephone numbers. 

I have recently extricated myself from what can best be described as an unhealthy situation. I am ready to take my life into a different direction. A light long distance flirtation seemed to be just the thing to kick off a celebration of my new life.

We spend the next couple of weeks texting up a storm. Each morning around 5 am Mountain Time     he greets me with a Good Morning text. I am an early riser and so I don’t find it strange to be cooking and cleaning  and trading texts with him. My co-workers  notice a significant change in my disposition. Not, that I am a particularly sullen person but, my overall mood has definitely improved.

 He feels so close to me and sometimes I have to remind myself that he is on the other side of the country. Especially, since we talk on the phone every other day for hours at a time.  

A thousand miles and a 2 hour time difference separate us,we never seem to run out of things to say to one another.  We spend the first couple of weeks catching up on the fifteen years which we were apart.

During the day,  I text him trivia about the Navy. Of course, I am not telling him anything that he doesn’t already know about the Navy. I am just so geeked up about learning new things.  I can almost picture him smiling at his phone and my excitement about learning about his world.  A few weeks into  our virtual courtship, he  asks me about my future plans. “Do you see marriage and children in your future plans.”

“Yes.” I reply without hesitation.

“Do you think that you could handle being a military spouse and the constant relocation plus the long separations?”

“Yes.” I say again without a trace of hesitation.

I hear him take a huge breath over the phone.

I feel as though things between us are rocketing  too quickly but, isn’t that how life goes sometimes? Especially,  when one is dating over the age of 35.. Shortly, before the Sailor came along, I was researching life as a single mother by choice.

 I had planned on going to a sperm bank and if for some reason, I was unable to carry a child, then I would adopt two siblings. However, life is flipping the script on me,  and now  I am smack dab in a serious courtship with the Sailor.

Friday, October 2, 2015

We'll Always Have Newport-Prologue

Several years ago, British singer Adele wrote  some of her most powerful material while nursing a broken heart. I envisioned her seated somewhere in a studio or even a coffee shop jotting down snippets of the powerful lyrics which would become power anthems for the lovelorn.

During my few years living in Newport, I experienced both the euphoric highs of new love and the bottomless dark depths of  unimaginable heartache. For a long time, I feared that I would never feel any kind of joy again.

 The writer in me wanted to document all of the heartache as it was happening.

However,  it took nearly two years after my life had fallen apart for me to be able to coherently write about my experiences. 

So, I sat back and read everything I could about break ups, heartbreak, and yes, even material on the Dark Night of The Soul.

 I was determined to understand what this hellish chapter in my life was supposed to teach me. Was this a lesson about love, loss, resilience, or a mixture of all three?

Fortunately, during this dark time, I ended up meeting some great people along the way.

I used this new found knowledge to weave a tapestry of essays about love, friendship, and self-discovery.

(Please note that I have changed the names and tweaked a few of the circumstances to protect the identities and privacy of everyone involved.)

October 2015