June 28, 2009

LIfe, moments, and nudges.

I got an email this week that I can't shake. One of my Wowettes, a lovely woman who I admire for her ability to be her own quirky self, met a guy at a recent event who I thought was a good match for her. They were talking and laughing and looked like they were having a lot of fun. So she wrote that she had an upcoming date with him and didn't know if she wanted to go because she "didn't know if she was ready for a relationship," and her comment still resonates with me.

How about living in the moment, I thought. I wrote back and said something like, how about just going out and enjoying an evening or day together? How about being so in the moment that you don't think about what might happen next week or next month? We label things and then our labels create expectations about what we want to expect, rather than allowing our time together to create its own unique picture. She wrote back recently, saying "thanks for the nudge," and I'm hoping that means that she went out and had fun with him, just like I'd hoped.

This subject came up in my daughter's family recently. The children had just finished kindergarten and were on their way to their surprise vacation to Big Bear when they were talking and talking and talking about events and people from school. My daughter told them that school was over and they weren't going to talk about it any more so they could enjoy what the summer brings. Just like a guy friend who called me recently to tell me about a recent vacation in Hawaii, saying that he'd been so worried about where he'd left his car and if he'd still have his job on Monday and that his dog was acting strange before he left and would his girlfriend stay with him if he were unemployed that he hardly remembered anything about his trip. He was on a dream vacation - he was there but he wasn't there. It isn't really living, experiencing life, if we are always in our heads and not fully present to enjoy what life brings now.

So how about we just go out, have fun, get to know this new person in our lives, and just let it happen? Stop wondering, worrying, questioning, debating. Stop expecting anything. Just enjoy each other. And maybe be pleasantly surprised. Could it be that easy?

June 20, 2009

Vacations, friends, and wealth.

I had a nice weekend. I spent Friday evening happy hour with one of my favorite women friends at a new upscale burger place with live music. Doesn't that sound like a nice way to end a week? We ate, we listened, we laughed. And then we went to another watering hole and happened upon a really, really good band of guys our age playing music from the 60s, the really cool songs. They did a rendition of In a Gadda Da Vida that made me feel like a hippy again. That's a good thing.

Then, Saturday night I had what I call a non-date. I met a guy friend for movie and dinner. Yes, I was out on a Saturday night with a male person. I like the non-date thing. No pressure, no need to try to impress, just be ourselves and enjoy. Kinda like Friday night with a woman friend, just have fun and be real. Maybe we should stop having goals in dating, I realized. He asked me what I'm looking for and what are my goals and I realized that I don't have any, that I am doing my best to live in the moment and let life happen without trying to mold it to my expectations. This doesn't mean that I have to give up my boundaries, those things that people might reveal about themselves that makes me know I can't be their friend. It just means that, if I stop trying to find things in my friends or prospective mate, I might just see them more realistically and be pleasantly surprised. And so far, my non-date guy is fun and well-mannered and silly and doesn't seem to be crazy. Not bad for my first non-date!

And we saw a great movie! Listen, I avoid movies that cater to thirteen-year-old boys, movies that are made by people who think we're stupid. So we go to the movie "Hangover" and I'm slightly worried that it will be stupid and it was fabulous!!! Just like a few movies lately dubbed "bromances," this showed men being silly and crude and nasty, but seriously loveable. I laughed for 90 minutes. Just when I thought I could catch my breath, I would burst out in guffaws, those belly laughs that make your stomach ache. You have to see this movie! A goofy guy movie with a big heart. Go! Geez, just looking at the poster above makes me laugh again.

My daughter and her family had a perfect weekend away. My almost six-year-old twin grandchildren finished kindergarten on Wednesday and woke up Thursday to their mommy and daddy saying, "Pack your bags, we're going to Big Bear!" My grandson called me when they got home to tell me about it, this little boy who is usually much too busy building things to talk on the phone. They hiked to the tallest waterfall in Southern California, panned for gold, and went on a canoe ride. A happy family, well behaved children, and parents who love each other and are on the same page raising the kids. More joy in my life, just hearing about their fun times. (That's them being silly below.)

So all is well. The sun shined today. I have food in my refrigerator. I have a roof over my head. I have a job to go to tomorrow. I have friends I adore. My kids are happy. Life is rich.der="0" alt

June 15, 2009

Music, friends, and mangos.

From Woodstock to Woodland Hills, here's Sha Na Na!

I love people. Sometimes, I think I don't, but that's when I'm tired and my shoulder hurts and I've been bombarded at work by anxious patients and cranky staff and demanding doctors, but I'm human and I get over it. Tonight was one of those times when I was glad to be alive and surrrounded by people. Cool people. Quirky people. New people. Old friends. Fun.

I had invited my Party List to join together to hear Sha Na Na at a free concert in the park in Woodland Hills. I was concerned that hardly any one would come, considering the finals of the Lakers game, but I decided that, no matter what, I would just enjoy the music and whatever else came along. What a surprise!

From one of the guys who has been at all my events, a gentle but fun guy who took photos and kept me company, to the lovely Persian women who drove over the hill, to the new guy who informed me he was looking for a clone of himself in female form, to the Wowette who connnected with him and laughed and smiled for hours, to the newly widowed woman who remembered me from high school, and on and on, I had a ball. Imagine all these people, most meeting for the first time, talking and laughing and dancing under the warm sun? Lovely.

And I must not forget the new guy, who we shall call The Mango Guy. There he was, quiet but smiling, holding a mango and moving it from one hand to another and then admitting, "well, we find love wherever we can." I couldn't tell if he was nuts or funny or kidding or all, but he was a dear. And he carried some of our stuff to the car, telling us a story by reciting a poem by a well known American poet. I can't make this stuff up, I just can't. And then there's my cohort in fun, my Wowette friend, who cracks me up with almost anything she says, and then she laughs and snorts and neither of us can control ourselves and, geez, can you put a price on being with such wonderful people?

So, on those days when I'm overwhelmed and hassled and need to be alone, I will remember that, whenever I want, I can be in the presence of such quirky people who lift my spirits and make me forget my troubles. Lucky me.

That's Bill, Me, The Mango Guy, and Bev.