I should be preparing for bed….but I’m not, felt like splashing a few thoughts down on virtual paper. My house was so quiet tonight, too quiet so I spent too much time allowing my mind to undress, you ever do that? Just sit and unravel little pieces of binding thought, memories or questions letting them fall to the floor like a dirty t-shirt, leaving you feeling a little naked, cold yet pure and honest? When I stand naked in front of a mirror there is no camouflage, no magic shirt that hides my tummy, or beginning to sag breasts….no jeans to cover my bulging thighs, scars on my knees or less than attractive rump. When my makeup is washed off there is just splotchy skin, those deep scars on my right temple, smallish eyes, my nose seems more pronounced and my “life” is showing in little whiskery looking lines around my eyes…makes me feel very vulnerable, no armor, no war paint…just me, the raw version.
Funny thing is I rather like looking at my face from time to time, (my body is a whole nuther story…blech) not looking at it as much as reading it. Each line on my face reminds me that I have had to fight a lot, learned a lot, survived a lot and laughed a bunch. I look at the deep lines on my forehead and am reminded of how far I have come since I was running the streets with thugs as a teenager…throwing hard stares, getting into fights and trying desperately to be a hard ass, that and the way I can make people chuckle when I raise my eyebrow at them. The scars on my temple remind me of driving to the emergency room after being mauled by our Doberman. My Mother kept telling to me to keep my face away from the window, (literally chunks of my face hanging off and freaking out the people in the cars next to us…I was in shock what did I know?) and finding the whole thing funny like, “Rawr I’m a big scary monster”….think my sense of humor was formed on that car ride. It took 101 stitches to put this Humpty’s face back together again but spending a few weeks bandaged like a mummy taught me to rely on my voice, thoughts and comic timing for attention….I mean lets face it we thought my mug was gonna be a mess!
The scar under my left eye reminds me that being alone is so much better than being “owned”, and paying the “price” for sneaking off to the library to study for my GED was worth every cent. The parentheses that frame my mouth remind me how much I laugh now….those are my favorite lines, just looking at them makes me smile more….once in a while it is good for me to take a walk around my face, revisit and let myself, if only for a few minutes be proud of my wrinkled, scarred, lived in face, I am 37 years old…and it’s showing, but whatever I am having a blast and am truly happy….each of those, “flaws” got me here.
Tonight rather than my mug it was mind that I let myself walk around and revisit…let me just say there is some ka-razy stuff up there, hell it inspired this ramble of a post so that should tell you something. Tonight I was wrapped up in the unwrapping of my binding thoughts about the men in my life. Now in this facet I know I have fared better than most…well, in some ways but overall I enjoy men, always have. My best friends were always guys and dealing with men always seemed so much easier….girls can be pretty mean, the older I get the less true that is but when I was younger….ugh girls were so vicious, guys were goofy and did all number of stupid shit but at least they made me laugh. Let us just get out of the way the “father” question, my father died when I was 6….of a Heroin overdose and the few times I remember seeing him he was nodding out in his plate of meatless spaghetti…he was a vegetarian, this is going to sound evil but to this day that cracks me up…won’t put animal flesh in my body but I will shoot smack. I didn’t know him and the only time that I think about that is when I watch my son with my husband…there has to be something about Dad’s, I’ve seen it and I can feel how happy, safe and taken care of my son feels with Carl but that feeling is foreign to me. So that is the Dad story, no hate, no ill will, no anything really and I am fine with that.
Now on to MY boys… I’ve never really been a dude magnet so there is not some long daunting list of men that have cycled in and out of my life so the unwrapping is not as bad as one might think. It always cracks me up when people view me as uber sexual, (my sister once told me, “Sam you ooze sex”….okay creepy and so very wrong, I might be willing to accept sensual but sexy or sexual…so not. For me the beginning is with Jeremy…my son, the man that made him possible, (physically) is of no importance and was not nice to me…at all, so Jeremy was the first man in my life to really take root. I found out I was pregnant when I was 5 months pregnant…yes, I am one of those….and Jeremy was born 2 months early at 3 pounds and not breathing…he fought to be here, stayed in the hospital for a month before I could bring him home and his fight inspired me. The day I brought him home I knew my life was forever changed, he fought to be here with me, I will fight forever to be here for him. We grew up together my son and I, (I was 18 when I had him….but much younger in experience) and that love is the purest, most real, raw I know….he is and will always be the biggest love in my life and the man I will and do love above all others, (sorry honey).
After Jeremy there was Mark, he was my best friend, and we thought we would “give it a go” as a couple….I loved him, was in love with him, he on the other hand, while being sweet to me was always looking for someone better. We were young and while it stung for years after I forgive him and love him still. Years after we called it quits he called me and told me he had always loved me and he had made a big mistake….made me feel better but also made me think, “Yes you did….and I am so thankful” . From Mark I moved on to Howie, my first ever CRAZY love, (read toxic sexual craziness) he was twice my age, married but separated and seeping in his generations “Idea” of a woman’s place. I was in constant conflict, lust, hate, lies…it was sublime…for a while. He was a big help with Jeremy, (taught him to wiz standing up…poor kid was raised in a house full of women) spoiled me with things and took me on my first vacation. It was love but probably more of that “missing father” thing but I look at that as a major stepping stone in my development as a woman….sex and life are not the same thing and passion is not always king….thank God…can you imagine?!
After Howie it was Carl…my Carl, the sweetest man ever and the one person I allow to take care of me, he taught me whole hearted trust and that with time comes real passion…the kind that comes when you brush the foot of your sleeping spouse, the way you love it on the 15th year as much, if not more than you did the first year. He can look at me sans camouflage and his gaze falls upon me with the same intensity as when I am all pimped out for a night on the town…to look at yourself in the eyes of someone that loves you as much as he loves me is one of the greatest gifts I have ever gotten. I am an easy “woman” to deal with but an easy person…hmmm not so much. Carl is a master of dealing with me, his comforting and nurturing nature seems to balance out my….none of that, in the most perfect way and as a father…he is amazing. My big love that I almost over looked because he was not my “type”…
Carl and I had been together a couple of years when I really “met” Randy Kemner, the owner of the store, (The Wine Country) and my second cousin. Sure I had been in contact with him before but I never really knew him. If Randy and I were a couple we would have broken up a thousand times by now…we love each other and drive each other nuts! Where I never had a Father I have this guy…he has given me wine, one of my biggest loves…food another giant thing for me but most of all he made me comfortable in my skin. Randy pushed me like no other man in my life ever had, he yelled, picked and prodded me out of my comfort level and helped me find this thing….this thing that it seems like I am pretty good at, who knew…I mean besides him?
Randy pushed me to go on the first trip to France…not to mention he paid for it for gawd’s sake! He writes me little love notes about how proud of me he is of me, (always after a big blow out…which is why I probably start those fights in the first place) and brags about me behind my back. He is the reason I write, the reason I study and the reason I feel so good everyday when I walk into the store…his trust and his praise keeps me fired up and when he shoots me that smile of his, the one that assures me that I have done well, surpassed his expectations…dude, it makes me melt. He also introduced me to man number six…Michael Sullivan of Beaune Imports.
Michael was the leader of that first trip to France, the one that changed me…the one that cracked open this amazing world for me and reminded me that no matter where you came from….we are all here together. Michael was one of my toughest nuts to crack, he is a close to the chest person….I’m not and I worked overtime to get him to let me into the fold…but he did and now he is one of the most important people in my life….right up there with Jeremy, Carl and Randy. Michael has taught me so much, shared so many amazing wines with me and with one sentence helped me find my voice. About mid way through that trip I was making some derogatory comment about my intellect and he leaned over and said, “Sam, you are with your peers” sounds so simple but to me on that day….I was so proud, so overwhelmed that someone like him would consider me a peer….I started babbling then and have yet to stop! Michael thought what I had/have to say was/is worth listening to, and to this day he one of my biggest supporters and just knowing that makes me try harder…want to be better, make him proud….not to mention the fact that I think he has the best French portfolio in the business. I am proud that he considers me a friend…stole my heart with one sentence…and a bottle of wine or two.
So those are my boys, the men that are a part of my every second and people that I hold as tight to my heart as I can. I let them mold me, change me, add their own little lines to my lived on face and relish in the way their love makes me feel smart, pertinent and as sparkly as I have ever felt.
Oh and because this is a wine centric blog I should let you know that I was drinking some…go figure. I was sipping on a glass of 2007 Sainte Marie Entre Deux Mers, ($13.99) light, crisp and sinfully easy to drink while rummaging around in the dust piles of my melon.
Back on the Front Porch: It's the cat's pajamas
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