Friday, September 14, 2012

Sometimes Life Just Has To Go On

This has been quite a week of emotions for me.  So this blog has three different mostly-unrelated topics.


As I said in my previous blog, my beloved grandmother passed away on Tuesday.  I’m still reeling from the loss of her and from the shock I felt at the extreme feelings I had about her passing.  Yes, it’s stupid that I was surprised to feel so strongly about losing her - of course I should be extremely sad, this woman meant the world to me – but I had convinced myself that - thanks to dementia - the woman who was my grandmother was already gone.

When I would visit her in the nursing home I would grin and bear it when I heard her talk about visiting with people who had long-since passed on, or who never existed, or the times when she would just simply not recognize me (either due to her eyesight problems or the dementia).  There were times when I would visit her and my strength would fail and I would cry as I held her hand and tried to play along with whatever adventure she described.

The truth is I had just been pretending to deal with the loss while I actually pushed it to the side.  It wasn’t until I got the message from my dad on Tuesday that she had taken a turn for the worse and I looked through the scrapbook she made me (gods if only I had told her how much that book means to me…) that I realized how much it actually hurt to finally lose her.  The biggest comfort to me is that her family surrounded her when she passed and that those of us who couldn’t be with her in person were thinking about her as she took her last breaths.

One of the sweetest comments I saw was my mom’s best friend who said that my grandma is now looking down on us with seeing eyes (because grandma’s eyesight has been near-blindness for years now) and thinking of her love for us.  I find peace in thinking of this.  I’m not sure where I stand on God, but I know she believed in Him, so I like to imagine that she is in Heaven now, smiling down on us with that grace that always seemed to fill her – even in the end.

The love that my friends, family, readers and coworkers have shown to me over the last few days has been amazing.  I’m sure this all would have been much harder without the cards, hugs and kind words.  We say goodbye to her this weekend.  I’ll be a pallbearer for her as I was for my grandpa three years ago.  Please send me strength and positive energy as I say goodbye to the woman who always made me feel like the most important person in the world.

Disclaimer: If you are a person who is interested in being in a relationship with me or has ever been in a relationship with me, you might just want to skip this next part.  - XO

A few weeks ago I started seeing a boy that I dated when I was 20 years old.  Back then we were young and impulsive and the relationship ended as many young romances end – with tears shed and melodramatic heartbreak songs played on repeat in car stereos.  But when I saw him on a dating site a few weeks ago I thought; “Ok, I’ve grown up, I am sure he has too.”  And gods was I right.

The man I met for a drink three weeks ago was exactly the same in appearance as the boy I knew 7 years ago (albeit with a scattering of random gray hairs), but his beautiful blue eyes were filled with more stories, more lessons than I had ever seen in them.  We went on a few amazing (read as: super fucking amazing) dates and were talking every day.

Naturally, by last weekend I was terrified.

I didn’t realize just how much of a commitment-phobe I had become until I started to think about the possibility of actually getting involved in a relationship again.  In the last two years since I ended my three-year relationship with my first “real” love, I have only gotten myself involved in relationships with men that I knew I wouldn’t want a future with.

Then, about a month ago I was out with Francesca and her boyfriend when he snapped some sense into me.  “Ann, I don’t understand why you always go after these guys that you have no future with.” He said to me.  I tried to tell him that I wanted to be with them for a while, just to experience them – that I didn’t need them to be “relationship material” because I just wanted to know about their lives and their experiences.

Because he is a good friend, he told me I was being an idiot. 

He told me that I was missing out on so much.  He reminded me of what it means to be in a relationship.  He reminded me that I was running away from getting to know someone on that intimate level that can only come with a commitment and a partnership.  (Only, we were out drinking so there were many more curse words and broken sentences, but the sentiment was the same.)

Slowly, the idea of seeking a more intimate connection with someone again began to take hold of me, and that happened to be when this boy walked back into my life.  Now, I’m coming to terms with the idea of being involved in a relationship again. 

But I’m still terrified.

My greatest fear is that I’ll become the person I was in my previous relationship – willing to give up a piece of (or all of) myself in order to please someone who was unwilling to do the same for me (and I was unwilling to ask him to).  Hopefully the love I’ve developed for myself over the last two years will prevent me from becoming that person again but I don’t trust myself when it comes to love.

It’s funny, because I’m always the person advising my friends in love to “dive in head first!” or “just go for it! the pain will be worth the experience!”.  When it comes to my own relationship needs though, apparently I’ve been running blindly away from love for so long I forgot what running feels like.

Time for me to be brave and just give it a try – hopefully the pain will be worth the experience – or maybe the pain won’t come.  Either way, I’ve gotta dive in and test the waters.  Wish me luck!


And now – for something a little more light-hearted:

Tonight is the Fancy Pants Party!

A week ago Thursday, my boy B said to me “Now that the weather’s not so hot we need to have a night where we all go out dressed to the 9’s again.”  So we made it happen. 

It’s happening at my apartment in just a few short hours!

I briefly thought about canceling the party because it didn’t quite seem right to have a fancy party the night before my grandmother’s wake, but life must go on and for the life of me, I need this.

I can’t wait to see all of you dressed to the nines.  I’ll see you Fancy Pantses tonight!

Much love,
Annie Jay


  1. I feel like I could have written this about myself. I don't trust myself in love sometimes because I do the same exact thing: I give it everything I have and make sacrifices I KNOW my partner would probably never make for me. I actually feel a little like a commitment-phobe on some level now, too. All I can say is, keep the lines of communication open so he knows where you're coming from and hopefully that will really help you get past some of the ick. Communication is KEY. I never verbalized what I needed either and it's gotten me into a lot of trouble in the past. Trying to get better at it now, though :)

    1. You are exactly right! Communication is definitely something I know I need to do better. When I look back at my past relationship I know one thing I could have done a lot more of is asking for what I need.

  2. Also: so sorry to hear about your grandmother. I lost my grandfather a few years back and it was really tough. People would try and rationalize it and say insensitive shit like: but he was 90, right? It doesn't matter the circumstances; she was someone you loved and for a long time. You're allowed to be upset over it.

    1. Thank you very much.

      It's very bittersweet - I'm happy she's no longer suffering, but also sad to have her no longer part of this world.

      Thankfully, the service on Sunday was beautiful. The preacher let anyone who wanted to get up and share memories about her - it was almost jovial, if a funeral can be that.