So I’ve finally figured out exactly what my problem is

And you’re all saying, “It took you this long? And only one problem? What the hell ever.”

I asked the Muse on the drive home to quit letting trees jump out in front of me when I’m speeding banish all Lexus vehicles from Earth give me an epiphany. Even just a small one — anything to serve as a sign that I’m either on the right course in life or else I’m in the vicinity.

Trusting the universe. Again.
And it came to me clear as day: I don’t trust the universe to do the right thing anymore. I am skeptical and scared and feel like I am helpless, just waiting for the hand of Fate to bitch-slap me whenever it feels like it and wondering how to dodge it next time that happens.

This from the girl who threw caution to the wind like she throws panties at Jon Bon Jovi at a rock concert (although the ass to which said panties belongs needs enough material that Mr. Bon Jovi would look like he was assaulted with a tarp or something). LOL

Anyway, I attempted to resolve to just dig the ride — the road is good right now. A little bumpy, but I seem to have gotten past the real turbulence that kicked in about a year ago. Dude, it’s been a YEAR since everything unraveled, give or take a few weeks. Holy shit.

And that’s the thing — back then, I assumed that the universe would provide. I knew I’d HAD IT with the way life was and that things had to get better. And let’s face it, far be it from me to lose my faith in serendipity — the world works in its own time, and it certainly isn’t in YOUR timeframe. But if you can somehow hang in there and fight with all your might and believe with all your heart, the carousel comes around again and picks you up after it unceremoniously tossed your ragged ass off of it.

But it’s not like taking back an asshole ex — we know full well to leave them in the gutter where we left them. But the universe really can make it up to us and lead us to where we need to be. Even if it’s not permanent because, alas, nothing really is. But if you’re committed to surviving, the universe wants you to end up thriving. I guess, though, before the latter can happen, we need to forgive the universe for its unconventional management methods.

The inspiration
When I get my nails done, I don’t really speak to anyone other than my manicurist Helen and another gal Tracy, who used to do Shan’s nails when she lived here. Other than that, all the technicians speak to each other in Vietnamese, and I am happy to zone the hell out and cry in the acrylics to the country music and easy-listening that’s on the radio.

But on Saturday, a gal started talking to me as our nails dried under the blacklight table. And I was riveted.

She was going to a Wedding of the Year on Sunday night and she was asking my advice on the toenail polish she was thinking about using for her pedicure (I talked her out of it). And I wished I could have talked her out of a major life decision she’d made, as that was what was eating away at her that she wanted to tell a perfect stranger (moi) about.

Before I proceed, let me extol this brilliant quote from Carrie Fisher in “When Harry Met Sally”:

“All I’m saying is that somewhere out there is the man you are supposed to marry. And if you don’t get him first, somebody else will, and you’ll have to spend the rest of your life knowing that somebody else is married to your husband.”

The girl at the nail salon? Was attending the wedding of her lifemate … as he married somebody else.


I couldn’t believe she was attending it, quite honestly. But good for her, wanting to witness it — lord knows she sounded stunned and perfectly incredulous at the prospect of him. Getting married. To someone else.

Life lessons without the heartache
Y’all know I (sometimes painfully) put it “all out there” on this site. Even if I spare you the specifics, I share my life lessons because, well, I want to. Damn it. 😉 But it’s a treat for me to be able to learn from someone else’s existential crisis — I have enough scars of my own and am happy to grow without the growing pains.

The question, of course, is WTF was she thinking?!?! He’d asked her out. Repeatedly. She adored him. He adored her. His very-famous mother loved her. Her mom loved him. They were friends and very, very close, yet she never accepted a date from him. Said they worked together and it was totally unethical, in her view.

To which I finally got a word in edgewise. “Fuckin’ ethics. Look where they got you.”

I thought she was looking for sympathy, but I am more of a kick-you-in-the-ass type of person, especially when you’re telling me you’re 44 and want this guy and he wants you and you’re going to let what could very well be true love slip the hell away from you because you’re afraid of somebody finding out and/or disrupting your life.

She was cool about it, though — she said, “I KNOW!” in response. And she said her mother is constantly telling her that she needs to break up the couple, as he doesn’t seem happy and he seems disoriented by the speed of things, like he was railroaded into this marriage by Bridezilla.

She got called to go get her pedicure, so we bid farewell and I wished her luck. And don’t think I’m not hoping to be parked next to her at the salon again REAL soon to get the scoop. 😉

The moral
I’ve never been in love with someone at the same time that very same person was in love with me. I’m more familiar with one person loving more (and it hasn’t always been me) and/or somebody longing for someone else. Either that or one party realizing their feelings long before the other person, but by the time the other comes around or frees up their schedule, it’s too late to get onto the same page.

We lose a lot of time waiting for the “perfect” time/conditions for our dreams to come true. And while I do believe that there is a “right” time, I am starting to accept that the weather doesn’t always cooperate just because you want life to be a picnic. There might be ants or mosquitoes — and the “just so” people can’t suck it up and spray some Raid and go on with the show.

On the other hand, people like me are always on the lookout for signs — like, maybe the “right” conditions will present themselves. And maybe the gal at the salon was one of those people. But what I picked up about her was that she wasn’t willing to change the conditions or the climate to get rid of the mosquitoes. Silent suffering, while oh-so-noble, doesn’t change the outcome of anything. Continually hitting yourself with a fly swatter (i.e., kicking your own ass) hurts after awhile. When do we stop sulking and start making changes?

When do we stop fighting the course of the universe and trust that it’s choosing our fates less randomly than the songs on the iPod Shuffle and more strategically like a chess championship?

And so, by my own admission, I learned from this gal that I need to quit swimming upstream because I’m running out of steam, just fighting to pretty much stay in place. I remembered that one of my greatest characteristics is my adaptability — to juggle life’s curveballs and figure out when to duck or run away and when to close my eyes and catch them. And, whether or not to toss them elsewhere or keep them and run with them.

Whatever comes my way next, I will not be scared. I will not give up on it if it’s something I really want. I will not be afraid to bend because I haven’t been broken yet.

I will not look back and say, “I should’ve done (whatever) while I had the chance.”

I will not pretend to be happy in lieu of taking the wonderful opportunity to BE happy.

But I will hope for that gal and for all of us who might have (knowingly or not) missed out on something or someone special that something even better comes around that was worth the wait and worth the time previously spent without it/them.

On iTunes: Garth Brooks, “Unanswered Prayers”

Comments closed.