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SkyGirl

Lightbearer: Discover

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Hi!! I'm late!! Here's a cat video as payment!!  😮

 

Ideally, I would have announced in advance that I was going to take a few weeks away from the forums, but sometimes life happens and you have to respond to it; and I've taken the last few weeks of quiet time to adjust to being a girlfriend for the first time in my life.  🤩  I agreed to officially start dating my incredible boyfriend, Eamon (still working on a last name), just under a month ago; and because I'm ... well, myself, and 2020-pandemic-self at that ... I immediately had an emotional breakdown that lasted nearly a week, as I processed my new identity, had an existential crisis over whether I had made the right decisions, and faced my terror that I was unprepared to be a good girlfriend and would somehow mess things up. But underneath all that, I knew that no matter what tempest-in-a-teapot my emotions wanted to stir up, I wanted this to happen and I was going to sink my anchor deep and hang on until it was over. And I'm really glad I did, because he is an incredible, strong, wise, kind, funny person and I'm happier than I have been in a very, very long time.  ❤️ 

 

But while it's great to have some positive emotional stability for once, the rest of my life looks a little like this:

 

giphy.gif

 

Sleep schedule, food schedule, exercise schedule - eeeeeeeverything is all upside-down and flown out the window.  :P  So while I debated taking a full-month rest and not doing a challenge at all, I really think I need some accountability to get my life back on track. 

 

The theme for this month is Discover. It might be a little dramatic to say that I feel like a bit of a different person than I was when I was officially single, but I do - and that's cool. I'm learning how to make another person an integral part of my life, at a different level than I've ever done before. I'm being introduced to a whole new circle of people who love him and are excited to get to know me as his girlfriend, and I'm introducing him to the people who love me, in the same way. And I'm curiously watching myself grow in confidence as I continue to commit to this relationship, day after day, and not give in to my old impulses to stay "free as the wind" and run away from commitment. 

 

tenor.gif?itemid=7822999

 

So underneath the structures I'm trying to put back into my life, I'm also trying to maintain an attitude of openness and curiosity about myself and how I go through this transition. (May have stolen that language from my therapist, but that's a-okay.)

 

My goals for the rest of this month are very straightforward, Basic Human 101 goals:

 

  • Eat at least two meals a day.
  • Eat at least two servings of vegetables a day.
  • Go to bed by 1AM (report your bedtime) nightly.
  • End your nightly phone call with Eamon by 10:30PM. (He typically goes to bed much earlier than I do, but I've consistently pushed that boundary since we started dating and I'm really not happy with myself for that. He has respected all my boundaries and he deserves the same respect from me.)
  • Move in some way every day. A walk, a yoga video, dancing in the kitchen, doesn't matter. The days of ending the day with 1200 steps need to end. 

 

Time to curiously and openly kick my own butt and get back into good basic human-ing.  ;) 

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3 hours ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Congrats! I wondered how long it was going to be before you posted a challenge.

 

Thank you!! I felt bad for staying away but I really needed a little time to minimize my distractions and figure out what I was doing ...  :P  

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Yup yup, doing a challenge after all was a good decision, I felt such a surge of happiness when I logged on this evening.  ❤️  Coming to the forums always feels like coming home. Because - you know? - it is.  ❤️❤️❤️  This place and all you good people are just as much my home as any physical location on earth.

 

Today was a good day, it just went so FAST that I ended up working almost 10 hours simply because I didn't fully realize what time it was. That was needed, though, as I'm still very swamped and had to get ready to publish another story tomorrow. I like being very busy, though, and am truthfully happier when I have so much to do that I need to work overtime, than I am when I'm struggling to fill my time.  :)   No workout today because it's late, and also because I walked like 10 miles with Eamon yesterday and I'm still almost too tired to go up and down the stairs, despite going to bed on time and sleeping more than 8 hours last night.  :P  I did eat ... one and a half? servings of vegetables? ... and got two decent meals in, so that part is good. About to have our nightly phone call and I'll make sure to end it by 10:30PM - good boundaries, so important.  :) 

 

Curiously observing my feelings this week = observing the push-pull pattern, where on weekends, when I'm with Eamon, I am 112% happy and basically would run off with him in a heartbeat if he asked, to waking up Monday morning feeling irritated and wanting a full day of space to ignore him and be alone.  :P  I'm reasonably certain those highs and lows will even out as we keep dating, but that's been consistent for each of our dates so far, and I'm just observing it without making any judgment calls or trying to "fix" it just yet. I've never done this before; of course I have a lot of excitement and also doubt. 

 

omxARDYPOBSD.gif 

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31 minutes ago, SkyGirl said:

Curiously observing my feelings this week = observing the push-pull pattern, where on weekends, when I'm with Eamon, I am 112% happy and basically would run off with him in a heartbeat if he asked, to waking up Monday morning feeling irritated and wanting a full day of space to ignore him and be alone. 

Welcome to dating for introverts.

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Sounds like a wise decision when you took a bit of time off from the forums, but I'm glad you are back. I  like how you decided to stick your anchor deep, and go in the direction you wanted to, despite the buffeting of emotions! And so happy for you.

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3 hours ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Welcome to dating for introverts.

 

So, I was looking for "introvert dating memes," and it's funny that this popped up because a) this is our favorite comic, because the foxes talk like us; and b) we have literally described the process of constructing this relationship as something along the lines of "building a pillow fort inside a turtle shell":

 

how-to-date-an-introvert-step-1-locate-o

 

Also yes. Basically the bubble stretches a bit on Sundays and crankily snaps back into shape on Mondays.  :) 

 

3 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

Sounds like a wise decision when you took a bit of time off from the forums, but I'm glad you are back. I  like how you decided to stick your anchor deep, and go in the direction you wanted to, despite the buffeting of emotions! And so happy for you.

 

Thank you EG!! Yeah, I missed everyone while I was gone, but it wound up being a good choice.  ❤️  It's really hard to tell the difference sometimes between your gut feeling and your fears, because they feel really similar most of the time. But one thing I've learned this year is that if there is a difference, and your fear wants you to go one way but your gut wants you to go the other, it's pretty much always a good choice to follow your gut, even if it's in opposition to your fear. And even though for the first week I was literally sick with fear and uncertainty, deep in my gut I knew I wanted this relationship and that it was the right thing. So I determined to dig in my heels and wait for the fear to pass. And so far, that has been 100% the right decision. Eamon certainly isn't perfect, but he is honest, humble, curious, thoughtful, serious, willing to be open and vulnerable with me, and committed to earning my trust so I am comfortable being open and vulnerable with him. That commitment in itself is what makes me trust him and want to share my heart with him.

 

... plus he's a really good baker and he makes delicious ginger molasses cookies.  ;) 

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Hey there, I've always been something of an observer from afar (which sounds kinda creepy, but hey,, let's go with it!), but I just wanted to drop in and say that I'm really happy to see you so happy. And also to offer not advice, as such, but I guess maybe solidarity? Basically this:

 

8 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

Curiously observing my feelings this week = observing the push-pull pattern, where on weekends, when I'm with Eamon, I am 112% happy and basically would run off with him in a heartbeat if he asked, to waking up Monday morning feeling irritated and wanting a full day of space to ignore him and be alone.  :P  I'm reasonably certain those highs and lows will even out as we keep dating, but that's been consistent for each of our dates so far, and I'm just observing it without making any judgment calls or trying to "fix" it just yet. I've never done this before; of course I have a lot of excitement and also doubt. 

 

Is exactly how I am. I recently entered my first healthy relationship earlier this year and was quite surprised to find that this came on really strongly for me. Even now, months down the line, whenever my girlfriend stays the night or we spend a full day together, without fail the next day I need a lot more space and quiet time. Like Tank said, the introvert thing! I did eventually talk to her about it, and she understands, thankfully. We've got two quite different relationship styles, so to speak, so it's been interesting getting them to work for both of us. Your Eamon sounds like a wonderful guy, and if you don't mind me saying so, perhaps just explaining to him what you've explained here might help things a little? From everything you've said about him, it sounds like he'd understand.

 

Regardless, I wish you both the best :) 

 

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9 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

Curiously observing my feelings this week = observing the push-pull pattern, where on weekends, when I'm with Eamon, I am 112% happy and basically would run off with him in a heartbeat if he asked, to waking up Monday morning feeling irritated and wanting a full day of space to ignore him and be alone.  :P  I'm reasonably certain those highs and lows will even out as we keep dating, but that's been consistent for each of our dates so far, and I'm just observing it without making any judgment calls or trying to "fix" it just yet. I've never done this before; of course I have a lot of excitement and also doubt. 

 

That sounds pretty normal to me, everyone needs some time to themselves, regardless of how much they care about the other person. Some people need that more than others (I can't imagine being the kind of couple that live together /and/ work together for example, whereas other people get on just fine like that).

 

5 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

plus he's a really good baker and he makes delicious ginger molasses cookies.  ;) 

 

Sounds like you've got a keeper there!

 

Really excited to hear about your new romance Sky, and really happy for you :)

 

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On 8/18/2020 at 3:30 AM, WhiteGhost said:

So excited for you Sky!

 

Thank you Ghost!!  ❤️ 

 

On 8/18/2020 at 4:54 AM, iatetheyeti said:

Hey there, I've always been something of an observer from afar (which sounds kinda creepy, but hey,, let's go with it!), but I just wanted to drop in and say that I'm really happy to see you so happy. And also to offer not advice, as such, but I guess maybe solidarity? Basically this:

 

 

Is exactly how I am. I recently entered my first healthy relationship earlier this year and was quite surprised to find that this came on really strongly for me. Even now, months down the line, whenever my girlfriend stays the night or we spend a full day together, without fail the next day I need a lot more space and quiet time. Like Tank said, the introvert thing! I did eventually talk to her about it, and she understands, thankfully. We've got two quite different relationship styles, so to speak, so it's been interesting getting them to work for both of us. Your Eamon sounds like a wonderful guy, and if you don't mind me saying so, perhaps just explaining to him what you've explained here might help things a little? From everything you've said about him, it sounds like he'd understand.

 

Regardless, I wish you both the best :) 

 

 

Yeti!! Hi!!  :D  I'm positive I've creeped on some of your challenges without saying hi myself, so welcome welcome!! It's SUPER reassuring to hear that I'm not weird and that this isn't some red flag in the relationship - and on Monday, I was like "Meh, it's not a big deal, I'll just power through it"; but I'm finding that the more intense our interactions are on the weekend (how serious the conversation, how much time we spend doing an activity vs. in focused one-on-one conversation, etc.), the more I actually DO need some down time on Monday. So I think I will talk to him about it - he's absolutely been very understanding when I've talked about things like this up to now.  :)  Thank you SO much for the encouragement!!

 

On 8/18/2020 at 7:00 AM, Jarric said:

 

That sounds pretty normal to me, everyone needs some time to themselves, regardless of how much they care about the other person. Some people need that more than others (I can't imagine being the kind of couple that live together /and/ work together for example, whereas other people get on just fine like that).

 

 

Sounds like you've got a keeper there!

 

Really excited to hear about your new romance Sky, and really happy for you :)

 

 

Thank you so much, Jarric, I really appreciate it!!  :D 

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8 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

Yeti!! Hi!!  :D  I'm positive I've creeped on some of your challenges without saying hi myself, so welcome welcome!! It's SUPER reassuring to hear that I'm not weird and that this isn't some red flag in the relationship - and on Monday, I was like "Meh, it's not a big deal, I'll just power through it"; but I'm finding that the more intense our interactions are on the weekend (how serious the conversation, how much time we spend doing an activity vs. in focused one-on-one conversation, etc.), the more I actually DO need some down time on Monday. So I think I will talk to him about it - he's absolutely been very understanding when I've talked about things like this up to now.  :)  Thank you SO much for the encouragement!!

 

Not a problem :) Honestly, I'm on a learning curve as well, and a lot of the time it's been the folks on here that have offered that same reassurance and encouragement. I'm slowly learning that some things are only red flags if you let them be so. Fact is, plenty of people out there would see needing this sort of downtime as a red flag or similar, but if the communication is there then it removes that. We've got a system worked out where all I need to do is send her a message in the morning saying I'm having a quiet day and that will be that. And I know full well it'll be the message I'll send her Sunday morning (she's coming over tonight and staying until Saturday, and thanks to Covid and days off work not matching up properly, I am only now just getting to take her out on an actual date, after months!), just as I know she'll understand. And from everything you've said, I think you and Eamon will get there easily. Communication really is key, no matter how small or weird or ridiculous you might think something is. And it sounds like you guys have it down :)

 

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tenor.gif?itemid=8176517

 

I've been helping my friend Amethyst pick songs for her wedding, and every one of them is making me imagine myself dancing like this ...  :D 

 

Wedding planning with the other bridesmaids has actually taken up more of my time over the last few days than I expected, and that's partly why I haven't checked in - but it's been FUN. Since Amethyst's wedding was already postponed once, she's much more laid-back about things this time and is excited to have fun, look beautiful and celebrate with her friends and family. We're all enjoying making a big deal out of her special day and it's especially fun to have a hand in picking the music, since I'm super opinionated about music generally.  ;) 

 

My biggest reason for not checking in much this week is my schedule still being completely in shambles.  :P  I'm still getting up and going to bed much too late, and that squashes my entire day as I run out of time to do chores or exercise, don't leave myself time to cook and eat properly, and don't have the mental energy for shopping or doing fun things I enjoy, like posting or even watching TV. At the moment I'm also chatting with Eamon nightly at 8:30PM, which is right in the middle of my most productive evening hour, and that combined with having most likely gotten off work less than 2 hours before ... means no chores and a crummy dinner, if I opted to take a walk instead of cook. Moving my call with Eamon would help but honestly the biggest thing is I just need to get my butt out of bed before 9AM. Because ... yeah. That's not necessary.

 

Other than that, the week was really good. I had my annual performance review and it was stellar, and I also got nominated for two peer awards, which felt very nice.  :)  One of the two stories I published this week unexpectedly got picked up by about 150 news outlets, and that was awesome, and I also got to mentor a couple of younger colleagues a little bit. So it was great. Tomorrow I need to meal plan, grocery shop, and hopefully take a very long, relaxing walk, since I barely exercised this week. It's supposed to thunderstorm but maybe I can dodge fronts. 

 

- - - - - - -

 

Curiously observing my feelings this week = Thinking a lot about boundaries. In the first place, I discovered after still feeling cramped and introvertedly cranky for a couple days longer than usual, that spending time with other friends helps a lot with a reset too. I'll still talk to Eamon about taking space on Mondays, but that was good info to have.

 

Another boundary issue is that Nicolas, my neighbor, wants me to resume taking walks and watching Netflix with him one-on-one; and I talked with Eamon about it and he encouraged me to do what I wanted, but also voiced his feelings that it made him uncomfortable. It is good communication and very appropriate for him to tell me how he feels, especially since I do believe he honestly trusts me to do what I want. The tricky part is that Nicolas is disappointed that I am dating Eamon and not him; and if I suggested the three of us doing things together, like I normally would, I think he would be uncomfortable. (I have not explicitly asked him yet but this issue did arise in the past with other gentlemen I was interested in, and so I expect his feelings haven't changed.)  :(  

 

I do get the "Eamon's not your boss, do what you want" perspective and agree with it - this isn't an issue with any of my other male friendships because they're all either married (so I do things with their wives included anyway) or completely platonic and younger than me (therefore making me comfortable hanging out with them without Eamon). But this one is a bit different. So ... I don't know what I'll do. But it's an interesting problem. I'm technically not responsible for either of them's feelings, but I also care about both of them very much.

 

On 8/20/2020 at 3:22 AM, iatetheyeti said:

 

Not a problem :) Honestly, I'm on a learning curve as well, and a lot of the time it's been the folks on here that have offered that same reassurance and encouragement. I'm slowly learning that some things are only red flags if you let them be so. Fact is, plenty of people out there would see needing this sort of downtime as a red flag or similar, but if the communication is there then it removes that. We've got a system worked out where all I need to do is send her a message in the morning saying I'm having a quiet day and that will be that. And I know full well it'll be the message I'll send her Sunday morning (she's coming over tonight and staying until Saturday, and thanks to Covid and days off work not matching up properly, I am only now just getting to take her out on an actual date, after months!), just as I know she'll understand. And from everything you've said, I think you and Eamon will get there easily. Communication really is key, no matter how small or weird or ridiculous you might think something is. And it sounds like you guys have it down :)

 

 

Communication is key and I'm so grateful that Eamon and I can talk about anything we need or want to.  ❤️  It was NOT that way in the beginning - he's an INTJ (so, Spock) and I'm an INFP (so, Deanna Troi, but without empathic powers), and the communication barriers were real for the first couple of months we knew each other. I actually read articles on how to communicate with INTJ's because we would talk about shows or books or theology or politics for hours, but never find a way to connect on what was most important to us.

 

Our breakthrough finally came when I decided to use a really awkward movie we watched as a springboard to explain a couple beliefs that are really important to me; and he, realizing I had gone out on a limb and shared something vulnerable, did the logical and fair thing by reciprocating and sharing his beliefs too. And the rest was history.  :D  Though actually, it got even better once we started meeting in person, because he's an excellent nonverbal communicator and we are great at reading each other's body language and facial expressions. 

 

Congrats on finally getting to go out for a date!! I hope you guys have a wonderful time - and thank you for the support and tips, that really means a lot to me!  ❤️ 

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1 hour ago, SkyGirl said:

Another boundary issue is that Nicolas, my neighbor, wants me to resume taking walks and watching Netflix with him one-on-one; and I talked with Eamon about it and he encouraged me to do what I wanted, but also voiced his feelings that it made him uncomfortable. It is good communication and very appropriate for him to tell me how he feels, especially since I do believe he honestly trusts me to do what I want. The tricky part is that Nicolas is disappointed that I am dating Eamon and not him; and if I suggested the three of us doing things together, like I normally would, I think he would be uncomfortable. (I have not explicitly asked him yet but this issue did arise in the past with other gentlemen I was interested in, and so I expect his feelings haven't changed.)  :(  

 

I do get the "Eamon's not your boss, do what you want" perspective and agree with it - this isn't an issue with any of my other male friendships because they're all either married (so I do things with their wives included anyway) or completely platonic and younger than me (therefore making me comfortable hanging out with them without Eamon). But this one is a bit different. So ... I don't know what I'll do. But it's an interesting problem. I'm technically not responsible for either of them's feelings, but I also care about both of them very much.

 

It's always a tricky situation to be in because you're right, you're not responsible for their feelings, though you are responsible for how you act with the information you have and that can feel like walking a greased tightrope at times.

 

That said, I think here it also comes down to how willing Nicolas is to let go of his feelings for you and instead prioritise your friendship. I've been in his shoes many, many times (the fun of continually developing feelings for straight women!), and yeah, it can be difficult and it can be painful, but ultimately if the friendship is something I've valued then I've always done my best to put that first and act accordingly. I hope he will too.

 

I think what I'd do is go ahead with suggesting the three of you do things together. If he's uncomfortable, chances are he'll voice it and maybe it'll lead to a discussion about how to move forward. At the end of the day, you're trying to preserve the friendship. He has to work with you on that. I wish I could be more help.

 

 

1 hour ago, SkyGirl said:

Communication is key and I'm so grateful that Eamon and I can talk about anything we need or want to.  ❤️  It was NOT that way in the beginning - he's an INTJ (so, Spock) and I'm an INFP (so, Deanna Troi, but without empathic powers), and the communication barriers were real for the first couple of months we knew each other. I actually read articles on how to communicate with INTJ's because we would talk about shows or books or theology or politics for hours, but never find a way to connect on what was most important to us.

 

Our breakthrough finally came when I decided to use a really awkward movie we watched as a springboard to explain a couple beliefs that are really important to me; and he, realizing I had gone out on a limb and shared something vulnerable, did the logical and fair thing by reciprocating and sharing his beliefs too. And the rest was history.  :D  Though actually, it got even better once we started meeting in person, because he's an excellent nonverbal communicator and we are great at reading each other's body language and facial expressions. 

 

Heh, yeah, it was similar with us. My Sunshine's a talker and I really am not. For us the breakthrough was having our country go into lock down. For seven weeks, give or take, we could only talk over the phone or messenger. It forced me to learn how to communicate in a better way and it helped us figure out how best we communicated with each other. Once lock down started lifting and we were able to get together in person again, things went far more smoothly.

 

1 hour ago, SkyGirl said:

Congrats on finally getting to go out for a date!! I hope you guys have a wonderful time - and thank you for the support and tips, that really means a lot to me!  ❤️ 

 

We didn't get to go :( Long story short, Sunshine's epileptic and had a seizure, and given how much it takes out of her and that there's risk of another one in the time after, we decided it was for the best to postpone. But she's still at mine just now and we're having a good time regardless.

 

And no problem, I'm happy to help when I can :) 

 

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12 hours ago, iatetheyeti said:

It's always a tricky situation to be in because you're right, you're not responsible for their feelings, though you are responsible for how you act with the information you have and that can feel like walking a greased tightrope at times.

 

That said, I think here it also comes down to how willing Nicolas is to let go of his feelings for you and instead prioritise your friendship. I've been in his shoes many, many times (the fun of continually developing feelings for straight women!), and yeah, it can be difficult and it can be painful, but ultimately if the friendship is something I've valued then I've always done my best to put that first and act accordingly. I hope he will too.

 

I think what I'd do is go ahead with suggesting the three of you do things together. If he's uncomfortable, chances are he'll voice it and maybe it'll lead to a discussion about how to move forward. At the end of the day, you're trying to preserve the friendship. He has to work with you on that. I wish I could be more help

 

No no, that's a very helpful perspective, thank you! I agree that explicitly discussing it with Nicolas is the best idea, though I'm not going to bring it up until he asks again.  :)  I do value his friendship greatly and hope to preserve it. 

 

12 hours ago, iatetheyeti said:

Heh, yeah, it was similar with us. My Sunshine's a talker and I really am not. For us the breakthrough was having our country go into lock down. For seven weeks, give or take, we could only talk over the phone or messenger. It forced me to learn how to communicate in a better way and it helped us figure out how best we communicated with each other. Once lock down started lifting and we were able to get together in person again, things went far more smoothly.

 

Yep, quarantine has done the same thing for us, and we talk about that a lot. We're much better communicators because we're forced to spend most of our relationship apart and only talking on the phone or text.

 

12 hours ago, iatetheyeti said:

We didn't get to go :( Long story short, Sunshine's epileptic and had a seizure, and given how much it takes out of her and that there's risk of another one in the time after, we decided it was for the best to postpone. But she's still at mine just now and we're having a good time regardless.

 

Oh no!! I'm so sorry, but I'm so glad you guys get to be together anyway!

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15 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

Another boundary issue is that Nicolas, my neighbor, wants me to resume taking walks and watching Netflix with him one-on-one; and I talked with Eamon about it and he encouraged me to do what I wanted, but also voiced his feelings that it made him uncomfortable. It is good communication and very appropriate for him to tell me how he feels, especially since I do believe he honestly trusts me to do what I want. The tricky part is that Nicolas is disappointed that I am dating Eamon and not him; and if I suggested the three of us doing things together, like I normally would, I think he would be uncomfortable. (I have not explicitly asked him yet but this issue did arise in the past with other gentlemen I was interested in, and so I expect his feelings haven't changed.)  :(  

 

I do get the "Eamon's not your boss, do what you want" perspective and agree with it - this isn't an issue with any of my other male friendships because they're all either married (so I do things with their wives included anyway) or completely platonic and younger than me (therefore making me comfortable hanging out with them without Eamon). But this one is a bit different. So ... I don't know what I'll do. But it's an interesting problem. I'm technically not responsible for either of them's feelings, but I also care about both of them very much.

Good on Eamon for respecting your agency as an individual and ALSO telling you how he feels. That's a huge green flag/sign of emotional maturity. Since Nicolas was also interested in dating you, the potential for weird is very high if you hang out with him one on one, and astronomical if the three of you do something this early. If I were Eamon I'd feel weird about a guy I new who had recently been romantically interested in my new girlfriend still wanting to hang out. If I was Nicolas I'm not sure I'd be able to separate my feelings of friendship from my hopes for something more than friendship this early on. I also think I'd step back from the friendship, especially at first. That's just me, however. 

 

I also want to say I'm fully confident in your ability to navigate this situation well.

 

Also, I saw the story you mentioned on the front page of Reddit. It's not the first time I've seen one of your pieces there.

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On 8/22/2020 at 1:49 PM, SkyGirl said:

One of the two stories I published this week unexpectedly got picked up by about 150 news outlets, and that was awesome

I saw a news story come up and I was wondering if it was one that you had worked on.  I didn't see your name as the author, though, so maybe not.

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On 8/22/2020 at 5:52 PM, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Good on Eamon for respecting your agency as an individual and ALSO telling you how he feels. That's a huge green flag/sign of emotional maturity. Since Nicolas was also interested in dating you, the potential for weird is very high if you hang out with him one on one, and astronomical if the three of you do something this early. If I were Eamon I'd feel weird about a guy I new who had recently been romantically interested in my new girlfriend still wanting to hang out. If I was Nicolas I'm not sure I'd be able to separate my feelings of friendship from my hopes for something more than friendship this early on. I also think I'd step back from the friendship, especially at first. That's just me, however. 

 

Your feedback is very validating, as this is pretty much exactly what my gut was telling me too.  :)  I've been messaging Nicolas like normal but a) staying away from super personal topics and b) not doing any one-on-one stuff. He hasn't asked again lately, and he's actually one of the few guy friends I am confident actually gets hints.  :P  Again, his friendship is important to me and I want to preserve it, but also yes, avoid weirdness if at all possible!

 

On 8/22/2020 at 5:52 PM, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

I also want to say I'm fully confident in your ability to navigate this situation well.

 

That's a simple sentence but it means the world to me.  :) 

 

On 8/22/2020 at 5:52 PM, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Also, I saw the story you mentioned on the front page of Reddit. It's not the first time I've seen one of your pieces there.

 

19 hours ago, WhiteGhost said:

I saw a news story come up and I was wondering if it was one that you had worked on.  I didn't see your name as the author, though, so maybe not.

 

This was the story:  https://www.nasa.gov/feature/nasa-researchers-track-slowly-splitting-dent-in-earth-s-magnetic-field/

 

It got picked up by CNN, USA Today, Fox News, even places like Infowars and some small radio stations.  :)  Again, I am quite humbled, as I was completely certain this was going to be a bust. My old boss Aubron talked about it a little in a staff meeting today and said he thinks the headline had a lot to do with why it was so catchy - and that makes me happy because the headline was my idea.  ;) 

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2 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

This was the story

Yes, that was the one I saw :)

 

I saw the link to it on Drudge.  I as very impressed with he story because it gave the details of the situation and the implications without being a "OMG is the world ending? Read this to find out!!!" kind of article which are all over he place but super annoying.

 

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33 minutes ago, Elastigirl said:

Congrats on the stellar review,  peer award nomination and new stories!

 

Thank you so much, EG!!  ❤️ 

 

58 minutes ago, WhiteGhost said:

Yes, that was the one I saw :)

 

I saw the link to it on Drudge.  I as very impressed with he story because it gave the details of the situation and the implications without being a "OMG is the world ending? Read this to find out!!!" kind of article which are all over he place but super annoying.

 

 

We actively worked VERY hard to avoid that kind of sensationalism.  :)  Because it's 2020 and everything is on fire and we explicitly wanted to avoid throwing more fuel into the dumpster.

 

That's SUPER awesome that you read and liked the story before you knew it was mine!!  ❤️ 

 

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

 

200.gif

 

This weekend was beautiful and I'm also thoroughly exhausted, physically and emotionally.  :P  Saturday was quiet but on Sunday I crammed in early church, a multiple-hours-long picnic with a bunch of people, and eight hours with Eamon, which was lots of fun but which also included a lot of intense conversations and close physical proximity.

 

tenor.gif

 

I did talk with Eamon about needing space on Mondays (and about protecting each other's alone time in general), and he fully agreed and even suggested using a code word to let each other know "I'm not mad at you, I just need some space".  ❤️  I tentatively tried using it this afternoon, but I was unclear and he didn't pick up on it, so I'll re-establish it and try again next time.  :P 

 

Today I was not very productive because I was so tired and groggy, but I did get another shout-out for my story in the staff meeting, which was nice; and I got done what urgently needed to get done. I finished up early enough to get a lovely brisk walk in the evening sunshine before counseling, only to open my email and see that counseling was rescheduled and I had missed the email; so instead I called my sister and made a chicken wrap with lots of random ingredients that didn't really taste that good together and made my stomach feel funny, but it was filling and had vegetables, so - whatever.  :)  Tonight I'll chat with Eamon for a bit and then relax with a favorite movie.

 

Curiously observing my feelings = I realized today that a significant portion of my Monday emotional hangovers is because I am so intensely, incandescently happy on Sundays that I wake up Monday certain that it must be wrong to be that happy; so I hyperfocus on something "wrong," real or imagined. A weird conversation, a crossed boundary (by either party), a new story or fact that doesn't fit with the way I have his story constructed in my head - and when there isn't anything real, I make something up, like "What if he's been lying to me the whole time and he's actually a serial killer?".  :(  I stumbled across an article about Relationship OCD a few weeks ago and forgot about it until this afternoon, but it's not surprising that a lot of the symptoms sound familiar - I've resonated with other types of OCD before and it very glaringly runs in my family. I never really noticed symptoms in myself before the last couple of years, but while I'm not confident in self-diagnosing myself with it, I'm also not at all surprised to recognize some of the patterns in my thoughts.

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1 hour ago, SkyGirl said:

I did talk with Eamon about needing space on Mondays (and about protecting each other's alone time in general), and he fully agreed and even suggested using a code word to let each other know "I'm not mad at you, I just need some space".  ❤️  I tentatively tried using it this afternoon, but I was unclear and he didn't pick up on it, so I'll re-establish it and try again next time.  :P 

He gets points in my book for defaulting to communication as a way to address the issue. Even if it didn't work as well as hoped the first time around, the strategy is sound.

 

1 hour ago, SkyGirl said:

Curiously observing my feelings = I realized today that a significant portion of my Monday emotional hangovers is because I am so intensely, incandescently happy on Sundays that I wake up Monday certain that it must be wrong to be that happy; so I hyperfocus on something "wrong," real or imagined. A weird conversation, a crossed boundary (by either party), a new story or fact that doesn't fit with the way I have his story constructed in my head - and when there isn't anything real, I make something up, like "What if he's been lying to me the whole time and he's actually a serial killer?".  :(  I stumbled across an article about Relationship OCD a few weeks ago and forgot about it until this afternoon, but it's not surprising that a lot of the symptoms sound familiar - I've resonated with other types of OCD before and it very glaringly runs in my family. I never really noticed symptoms in myself before the last couple of years, but while I'm not confident in self-diagnosing myself with it, I'm also not at all surprised to recognize some of the patterns in my thoughts.

Oh, I know those feels, of being too scared to be happy. Hopefully it will pass soon.

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7 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

I did talk with Eamon about needing space on Mondays (and about protecting each other's alone time in general), and he fully agreed and even suggested using a code word to let each other know "I'm not mad at you, I just need some space".  ❤️  I tentatively tried using it this afternoon, but I was unclear and he didn't pick up on it, so I'll re-establish it and try again next time.  :P 

 

I'm really happy to hear it went well for you. And even with the slight miscommunication, it sounds like a solid way forward for you both.

 

7 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

Curiously observing my feelings = I realized today that a significant portion of my Monday emotional hangovers is because I am so intensely, incandescently happy on Sundays that I wake up Monday certain that it must be wrong to be that happy; so I hyperfocus on something "wrong," real or imagined. A weird conversation, a crossed boundary (by either party), a new story or fact that doesn't fit with the way I have his story constructed in my head - and when there isn't anything real, I make something up, like "What if he's been lying to me the whole time and he's actually a serial killer?".  :(  I stumbled across an article about Relationship OCD a few weeks ago and forgot about it until this afternoon, but it's not surprising that a lot of the symptoms sound familiar - I've resonated with other types of OCD before and it very glaringly runs in my family. I never really noticed symptoms in myself before the last couple of years, but while I'm not confident in self-diagnosing myself with it, I'm also not at all surprised to recognize some of the patterns in my thoughts.

 

...well, that's definitely given me something to think about as well. I do know where a lot of my issues and hang-ups come from and I have been working on them, but there are still some things that seem to have just come out of nowhere. Kind of like a part of me is trying very hard to reject the happiness because it's such a foreign experience, therefore it can't be something real, therefore it has to go. I do hope you're able to work through things though, you do deserve to be happy, very much so.

 

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On 8/24/2020 at 10:59 PM, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

He gets points in my book for defaulting to communication as a way to address the issue. Even if it didn't work as well as hoped the first time around, the strategy is sound.

 

Honestly, it almost weirds me out how he does everything right. When he has a need or I've crossed a boundary, he respectfully and kindly tells me; if he crosses one of mine and I tell him, he apologizes and takes note so it doesn't happen again; when I am feeling anxious or upset about something, he listens quietly and then asks if he can help, and offers advice if I ask but reminds me that I'm capable of handling it myself if I want to; he remembers (even writes down!) dates and prayer requests and books and other things that are important to me; and he puts time and thought into finding date activities that speak to our shared interests. He prays about everything, recommends books that help me grow and reads the ones that I suggest, prioritizes making time in our daily and weekly interactions for church and worship, and backs up his words with consistency and action. I know a lot of those things are just being a good human and good friend, and I absolutely do all the same things for him - but it freaks me out, dude!!  :D 

 

On 8/24/2020 at 10:59 PM, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Oh, I know those feels, of being too scared to be happy. Hopefully it will pass soon.

 

I hope so too, because it hasn't yet, unfortunately.  :P  My brain latched onto a single uncomfortable conversation from the weekend and has been replaying it and obsessing over it all week, and when I talked through it with my therapist yesterday, I realized the underlying reason is, I'm still afraid that the other shoe will drop - that I'll find something irreconcilable or unforgivable and this beautiful thing will fall apart.  :(  She reminded me to focus on what I know, rather than the what-ifs; to use grounding techniques to try to get out of my head and interrupt the racing thoughts; to clearly define what would be a deal-breaker so I can reassure myself when things aren't those; and to visualize myself "throwing away" thoughts that don't serve me. They aren't completely helping, but they're taking the edge off.

 

There's also other stuff going on that's denting my emotional reserves, so it's not all fears about Eamon.  😕 

 

On 8/25/2020 at 5:13 AM, iatetheyeti said:

 

I'm really happy to hear it went well for you. And even with the slight miscommunication, it sounds like a solid way forward for you both.

 

 

...well, that's definitely given me something to think about as well. I do know where a lot of my issues and hang-ups come from and I have been working on them, but there are still some things that seem to have just come out of nowhere. Kind of like a part of me is trying very hard to reject the happiness because it's such a foreign experience, therefore it can't be something real, therefore it has to go. I do hope you're able to work through things though, you do deserve to be happy, very much so.

 

 

That's a super good way to describe it!! Logically I know I'm free to be happy and that all flags are green at this point; but yes, emotionally all of this feels - almost forbidden?? Like an illusion I need to get over and get back to reality? It's NOT comfortable - but thank goodness it's also not true!!  ❤️ 

 

17 hours ago, Salinger said:

sending love xx

 

SO many hugs, Sal, I've been thinking about you and praying for you!!

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