Step by Step
It has been brought to my attention by reading far too many spiritual books and trying to find the answer to the age old question of, “What is the point of all of this?” that one common thing that all the books, teachings and Oprah reruns are telling us, is that life is about the journey and not the destination. That all the “steps” required getting from point A to point B; all those obstacles that life throws in our direction and how we manage them. Those things in the middle of the journey are the things that not only make us stronger but wiser. But after a certain amount of years of experiences, life lessons, ups and downs and starting fresh; I couldn’t help but wonder if all of these “steps” is pushing us forwards or backwards.
As a new week is beginning and the fall season has officially begun, I was more than ready for taking my own “steps” not only in a new direction but hopefully in the right direction as well. Last Monday started a week that I knew was going to be filled with nothing but positive energy. My friend, Feathers and his boyfriend, invited me to see the re-release of the movie, Finding Nemo, at the theatre on 34th Street. So, after work, I was excited to not only see them but the movie. This is my second favorite movie of all time and what made it even more special to see is that I saw this movie when it came out nine years ago with Feathers. The minute we saw it, instantly Feathers turned to me and said, “You are sooo Dory.” And since then that movie has remained in both of our lives and it was just extra special to see it with the both of them. It was also a learning step for me because Feathers has not only been in my life for so many years but he is my best partner for going to the movies. However, there was a time many years ago, that we had a falling out because I was dating someone that he didn’t approve of and he was just protecting me but we didn’t speak for an entire year and in that year, I never went to the movies. It just felt “off” without Feathers by my side seeing a movie, commenting on the trailers and what we were going to see next. That “step” of not speaking to a dear friend for a year taught me that no matter what your friends are telling you, they are telling you for a reason and instead of blocking yourself; open your mind and listen. You don’t have to agree but certainly listen. After the movie, we all said goodbye and I just ended up walking the entire way home because it was a special moment for me.
The next day was going to mark my first date post Mr. Architect. It was with a guy I had met on OKCupid earlier in the year but just never found the time to meet up. So, finally, he messaged me out of the blue after months of not exchanging any correspondence; we agreed to meet on Tuesday for some wine. I suggested we go to my old stomping ground and favorite wine bar, Lela Bar, and he agreed that it would be great to finally meet. We were scheduled to meet at 7:30 that night but he needed to push it back to 8 due to him getting out of work late and he wanted to hit up the gym before meeting. I was fine with that because I could always use a few more minutes of getting ready. That night in New York was an intense rain storm so it wasn’t the best commute. When I turned onto Hudson Street toward the bar, I noticed a super tall guy walked toward me that looked like my date. Turns out, he saw me as well and it was in fact my date for the evening. He said he was looking for an ATM because he wasn’t sure if the bar took cards, I told them that it did so we turned around and into the bar we went. The bar was packed and only one seat was available, he offered it to me but told him to go ahead and take the seat; which he did. He was rather…how do we say this…on the sweaty side. I knew he had just finished with the gym and was probably flustered as well and I figured that once his body temperature cooled down that he would be back to normal. Two glasses of wine later and still the sweating was happening. Finally, he addressed it. He confessed that the next day he was even seeing a dermatologist for his situation. From there the date turned from the usual “getting to you know you,” to the many issues one is faced when having a sweat condition. I had no idea that a person can sweat in the most unusual spots of the body but that night I got a full tutorial on the many worlds of SWEAT. It was one of those dates where while he wasn’t bad to look at (minus the sweat), kind of funny and yet he still didn’t ask questions about me. It was as sweat fest and I was simply there as an observer. After the date, we both said our goodbyes and in the end I knew it wasn’t his sweat or lack of good conversation, it was me. My heart wasn’t in it. I didn’t want to be there. I did my best to fake it but in the end; I simply would have rather been somewhere else. Not sure where but I just didn’t want to be there.
When Thursday rolled around, I was meeting some old coworkers of mine in Brooklyn at this fun bar, The Counting Room, this took weeks to plan and I was looking forward to it because I hadn’t seen any of them since I left that job earlier this year. We all were having a wonderful time catching each other up on our many adventures and I don’t know who I thought I was but not eating dinner and doing at least three shots of whiskey, I was certainly feeling the room slightly spin. After we all said our farewells to each other, I was walking to the subway to head back to the city and I thought that while I didn’t like that job I was at, it was a “step” that took me in meeting these great people and a “step” toward this new job and where I am at today.
By the time Friday rolled around I was excited and anxious all at the same time. That night I was going to be having dinner with Mr. B. we agreed earlier that day that I would just go over to Long Island City, a place I have never really been before and we would have dinner there since that is where he lives. I jumped on the 7 train and literally took only one stop and I was there. Mr. B. and the boy were in route to pick me up and met me on the corner of some street called, Vernon. I had no idea what the evening was going to bring; I just knew that both of us were extremely tired from the work week. We got to Mr. B.’s apartment and had a glass of wine while everyone got settled and I was given a tour of the pad. It was decided that we would be literally going downstairs to have dinner at this Asian fusion restaurant called, Shi. It was going to be just Mr. B. and me while the boy watched a movie and had his dinner. We would only be gone an hour and I assumed that after dinner I would be going back to the city.
Dinner was great; I think it was just what we both needed. We sat outside for it was still warm enough to do so. The boy had a job to do while we were having dinner and that was to text from the iPad to his dad that he was ok and to provide constant updates on how he was doing. It was rather cute watching that happen and toward the end of dinner everyone was in the mood for something sweet to eat. So, I went along for the ride and back up to the apartment where ice cream was had and while I didn’t partake in the ice cream, the adults had a glass of wine. It was time for the boy to go to bed and again, I assumed that after that; I would also be getting sent home to go to bed. When I said goodnight to the boy, I got up to grab my things and Mr. B. said, “No. You can stay the night. You should stay the night.” I went with the flow, I was having a great time and truth be told, I actually wanted to hear those words come from him. We both got ready for bed and fade to black. It was the perfect ending to the week and an even more pleasant way to start the weekend.
I woke up the next morning to noises from the kitchen. I looked over and Mr. B. was still asleep but I could tell that the boy was up. I remember on Saturday mornings where as a kid you woke up before everyone in the house did and all you wanted to do was watch Saturday morning cartoons with a big bowl of some sugary cereal. Times have not changed for that is what the boy wanted. It was cute the way he woke Mr. B. up. He used the iPad to text Mr. B.’s cell phone that he was up and hungry. I wasn’t sure at all how it was going to be addressed that not only had I stayed the night but I was still in the bedroom. I let Mr. B. go out first and immediately they started playing wrestle and so I got dressed and made my exit out into the living room. No one skipped a beat; it was as if I had been there all along. I got a good morning from the boy and Mr. B. I didn’t want to over stay my welcome and so I grabbed my coat and to my surprise, Mr. B. said he would walk me to the subway and along the way get milk for the cereal that was desperately needed. Before I was leaving, I made sure to say goodbye to the boy and it was there that he asked his dad if I could attend his first lacrosse game when it happens. I wasn’t sure how to feel at that moment but it felt rather amazing to be asked to something like that. Mr. B. and I walked in the early morning light toward the subway and we parted ways with a hug/kiss combo and I went home to begin my Saturday.
That Saturday evening, I decided to keep it as low key as possible. I was invited to an ex of mine’s house for just a small gathering of him and his boyfriend for wine and snacks. It was just what I needed; nothing too crazy and I didn’t want to get drunk or anything. It was just what I needed because the last several weekends had involved such heavy drinking. I left their house around midnight, in bed by 12:30 and was relieved that I wasn’t drunk.
Yesterday was amazing. Woke up feeling energized, I had an amazing run along the Hudson River followed by a delicious iced coffee. You could tell this past weekend that the city was alive, summer was over and everyone was holding onto this weekend as if it would be their last. Not one cloud in the sky, it was warm with the occasional breeze. I decided that today was going to be a “ME” day. No desire to socialize, no desire to cause any trouble but rather just me, the city and the amazing weather we were having. I thought it was a “step” in the right direction to set the tone for the week ahead. I took my bag that was filled with all the necessities, the magazines, books, phone and bottled water and took my ass to Central Park to sit in the grass and just…be by myself and it was perfect. Before I knew it, I had been there for hours and went home, ordered dinner and watched a movie before going to bed at a descent hour.
I woke up this morning feeling great and with purpose. I am not sure what that purpose is or will be but I felt it is a “step” at least in the right direction. As I walked to the office this morning I couldn’t help but wonder about the, “Step by Step” process. There is “steps” you need to take in the AA program, there is “steps” you need to take in order to make a delicious meal. You can’t just throw ingredients into a bowl and expect something wonderful to come out unless you take the proper “steps” and measurements. Yes, I am giving you an analogy based on cooking even though I have no idea how to cook. But I do know that in order to get from one place to another it requires “steps.” So maybe this week we can all focus on our own “steps,” what will it take to accomplish a certain goal or plant a seed for our next chapter. Regardless of the outcome it is the stuff in the middle that matters most, good luck and take those “steps” to move forward.
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