Single and Breathing

Okay, I want to share this:After picking up my Lotto Tickets

I walked down to the gas station so I could get a Lotto ticket and also to just get a little workout in.

I was sweaty and gross and as I was finalizing my lottery ticket (which I’m sure is going to win) when this young man came up to me and asked me if I was single.

Continue reading loose transcript below or listen to the podcast:

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I was a little bit thrown.  Good looking young man, very well dressed and he was buying gas or something.

I looked behind me to see if he was talking to somebody behind me and he said, “No, I’m asking you. Are you single?”

I still couldn’t answer him because I was in shock.  He said, “I’d love to buy you a drink or maybe lunch or coffee…”.  He was so elegant and quite fantastic actually.

But I just looked at him and I just said, “You know, I can’t do that — my boyfriend’s waiting for me at home but thank you.  I appreciate it.”  And I just pivoted and walked away.

I started thinking about how embarrassed I was that he asked me.

Also he probably was half my age?  – Maybe not half my age, but it doesn’t matter –  he was young enough to be my son.  And although I was flattered by that, there’s a part of me that knows I have some very strict standards.

I feel a little bad that I lied to him, but I’d rather have lied to him, than have made him feel stupid or made him feel bad.

I am single.

I am single because I have had two great loves in my life and I was so disappointed when they ended that I think it’s been very difficult for me to even consider the possibility ever again.

It’s not that they ended badly or that they were horrible, it’s just that when you really do love someone and you care for them it’s really difficult to lose that friendship as well as the relationship.

I’m not sitting here pretending that I could have been friends with these people ever again after what happened between us, but it was so disappointing, and it hurt me so much that I think it’s really hard for me to ever even consider anything less than what I want now and what I deserve.

It’s almost as if having those relationships have now set the bar really high.

So, I am not going to spend any more time on “finding love”.  Any more than I do on anything else in my life because I believe there is something very organic in relationships.

I don’t go looking for friendships.  I don’t go looking for new girl-friends either to hang out with.  They either happen or they don’t in all of the things that I do in my life.  And I think that’s kind-of how the next step has to be for me.

I’m also not crazed about this idea that I have to be married.  Or that I have to be in a relationship.

I do believe we are social beings.  I do believe we are better with companions and friendships and partners and spouses.  But, I also think we can be worse with those things too if it’s not the right fit.

So yeah, I’m single.  But it’s a good thing, not a bad thing. It’s not preferred or something that I don’t like – it’s just where I’m at today.

In order for me to ever really consider ever dating someone again, he’s going to have to at least be in his 40’s – or at least turning 40 – and then all my other standards that I have.

I guess the reason why I’m sharing this post is because I wanted to say this:

I think it’s OK to have standards.  I think it’s OK to want what you want!

What I don’t want is some of the relationships that some of my friends have.  They are in so deep with children and mortgages and their businesses are tied in and they feel like they can’t breathe.

You know what? Right now I’m single and I can breathe.  And I love it. And I don’t want that to change as much as I want to find someone that kind of fits into that puzzle pretty easily (if that makes any sense).

I just wanted to share that. I would love to hear your thoughts.

As always, have a sweet day. Thank you again for always stopping by — I appreciate it!

I’ll be back again soon.

Bye.

Carmen

Your Resolutions From Me

Yup, you read that right. I wrote a 2019 wish list for YOU! You’re welcome.  😉

  • May you listen to more music on a regular basis and stop texting, especially while driving.bitmoji-20190101063153
  • May you meet your friends in person, talk to them on the phone, enjoy the reality of life instead of this “cyber” version we’ve all become addicted too.
  • May you read more books and take a journey anywhere that doesn’t involve a computer screen. bitmoji-20190101065859
  • May you stop having your entire life and relationships revolve around politics and Trump in general. Stop it!bitmoji-20190101065032
  • May you stop being so obsessed with your looks, your weight, your “outer” God-given shell and learn how beautiful you really are. This is how I see YOU. bitmoji-20190101080924
  • May you realize that life is both hard and then some days even harder – for EVERYONE. You’re not the only one having a tough time – walk on through it. We’re all over here, waiting for you, needing you too. bitmoji-20190101065401
  • May you be more generous with your time, your money, your love. Being selfish, cheap and self-absorbed is easy (and so unattractive).
  • May you realize that it’s not always about forgiveness, but about acceptance. Sometimes things are just the way they are – and that’s okay.bitmoji-20190101080058
  • May you celebrate your birthday so brilliantly understanding that this is the day YOU were gifted to the world and YES, we should celebrate that ALL. DAY. LONG. You matter!bitmoji-20190101065455
  • May you be considerate of others – while driving, while walking, while at the grocery store…you know, everywhere! Kindness stems from being considerate.
  • May you dance a lot more often and stop being worried that you’re doing it right. (If you’re dancing at all, you’re doing it right!).bitmoji-20190101065543
  • May you take care of your health – mental and physical. No excuses! bitmoji-20190101075845
  • May you reach out to others instead of sitting at home wondering why no one is reaching out to you. bitmoji-20190101080015
  • May you stop swearing – it’s the easy way out (I’m talking to you Arianna Grande, Adam Levine, Cardi B. and others… uhem, and yes to myself). bitmoji-20190101063056
  • May you have more people in your life who are not like you!  Racially, religiously, culturally, sexual orientation, etc. Let’s broaden that circle people! We’re all better for knowing and accepting difference! bitmoji-20190101075909
  • May you go out of your way and hug someone you’d never imagine hugging before, just because they need it (and so don’t you!). bitmoji-20190101065623
  • May you find the time to create art in whatever way it manifests in the unique being that is YOU!bitmoji-20190101080601
  • May you find that part of you that is warm and fuzzy and let that shine instead of that yukky part that surfaces in all of us way too often.bitmoji-20190101063338
  • May you break out of your comfort zone and learn what it feels like to really BE!
  • May you understand what true beauty is and that it has nothing to do with looks. bitmoji-20190101063532
  • May you love fiercely, cry with joy and see all the good in the world. bitmoji-20190101065827
  • May your 2019 be a monumental and beautiful year!bitmoji-20190101062605

Don’t let me down people!  I promise to do my very best also!

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My Symphony

Saturday 9:23am

I just feel like writing. I’m dressed to go for a run. My bed is made, I’ve had my coffee, it’s way past my “writing time” – yes, I have a “writing time” – it’s usually early in the morning between 5am and 6am.  It was never a scheduled thing, it just happens that way.  It’s the quietest time of the day for me. My mind is free, clear and fresh.  And yet, things pop in and out like a symphony.  Musicians chiming in on cue – that’s what it feels like when I write early in the morning.

But now it’s much later. My day has already begun, and this, this workout – this run – is what’s next. But I can’t. Something has pulled me back.  And I never type when I write. No. I’m old school. I’m that person that has to write long-hand and then transfer it to the computer if I dare (that “symphony” of writing isn’t always a masterpiece, or even close, by the way).

Hmm.  So what’s so important that I half tied the laces on my sneakers and have sat back down in front of my computer to write? Honestly I have no idea. I don’t know what’s about to come next, but I’m typing nonetheless.

Lots of things have plagued my brain lately. I refuse to let politics crowd my thinking too much so I’ve limited my time around it — but I can’t dismiss what happened yesterday.  What a refreshing moment to hear President Barack Obama speak in Chicago. I turned on the TV and like a dried-up sponge needing for just a drop of water, I was quenched instantaneously.  The complete feeling of security as an American came back to me – I hadn’t realized it had ever left. But yes, that stunned me a bit yesterday — the need to hear a leader of my country speak… in a rhythm. In a cadence. With elegance and intelligence.  It was music to my ears, to my soul…

In lieu of dealing with the daily politics of the current foolish administration, I’ve been reading Jon Meacham’s book, The Soul of America.  A reminder that we’ve been through similar moments before and prevailed.  But still.   I wish we weren’t here again.  I wish Obama’s voice didn’t settle my soul so much – it just reminded me of how bad things really are – and although I have faith that we’ll be fine and find our way back, it’s is daunting…maddening and surreal.

But my brain has also been plagued by my recent trip back to the east coast.  I got lost in my own home town of Boston – that’s how long it’d been since I’d been home – I can’t lie, I miss that beautiful town so much more than I realized.  I actually missed the sky scrapers, the city lights, the hum…  it’s not like New York at all, but when New Yorkers talk about New York, I get what they mean.  For me, Boston has never left me.  My heart.  It’s part of who I am and although I never negated that, and I’ve always been a proud Bostonian, I hadn’t been home FOR REAL in a long time.  Just me, visiting the city.  Me, walking around – people watching.  City loving.  Don’t get me wrong, I’d been back in the past 24 years, but just for weddings, funerals, graduations – and only for a minute. A weekend at most – but this time, I was THERE. Away from the chores of “family” and instead with just the city. And my friends. And I miss it. I ache for my friends.  And I’m a little sad to be back in Los Angeles…

I went to Vermont too – actually I was there first. I don’t miss Vermont so much (I went to school there) but I do miss sitting on Alden’s back porch for hours overlooking Lake Champlain in the distance and laughing, talking, reminiscing… That was everything. And it settled my heart.  I miss the simplicity of quiet.  The prettiness of tranquility.  The crickets at night nearly killed me though – but I could get used to that hum again, I think, not sure – but the quiet during the day, the calm hum of life…. It really was beautiful.  And yeah, I miss that now too.

I don’t know why I needed to write right now, but isn’t that the beauty of creativity? You never know when it’s going to hit – and sometimes I swear I have the best thoughts in the most inopportune moments – for me, IN THE SHOWER is a big one!  I hate that!  It also happens when I’m in my stride.  Running so fast (for me) that I’m in that imaginary zone people talk about – if I think of it, I turn on my recorder on my cell and try to grasp that ever “clever” thought – but the moment I do all of that, I’ve stopped the creativity and most likely lost the initial “thought” anyways!!!  I’m sure I’ve solved the world’s problems ten times over during those moments – I just haven’t been able to record it fast enough without losing the momentary thought!  😉

James Baldwin said, “Love does not begin and end the way we seem to think it does.  Love is a battle; love is a war; love is a growing up.”  Seriously, it’s just in my head. I have no idea why, but I wanted to mention that too.  It’s part of the symphony – it all makes sense and sounds so beautiful in my head.  And I’m not sure Mr. Baldwin was right. But I can’t argue it yet either – so it’s there, in the melody…

There’s a lot going on in my head – I feel blessed to be consumed by so much.  Whenever I write (long hand) I tend to end with how I’m feeling.  I feel good.  Right now, I feel empowered and in a space of intrigue.  Everything seems tangible even though I can’t really grasp it.  Yes, I get how ridiculous that sounds, and yet, it’s still true. I am reevaluating everything. I’m dreaming every dream and not discounting its real life applications. Everything is in sync. It sounds beautiful. Rhythmic. In tune. I love that actually. I love that a lot.

Okay, my typing has slowed, my brain feels purged. I think the orchestra has finished. For now.

Time to lace up my sneakers, put on my headset and go for a run.

Carmen

For The Love of Alden

I was out running.

I had forgotten to silence my cell.  The music and mind are not to be interrupted for that one workout hour. Every. Day. That’s the goal.

The text chimed loudly amidst Prince’s “Purple Rain”.  I stopped cold, annoyed at the interruption.  I checked the phone, attempting to just turn off all sound, I saw the alert message anyways.  It was from the East Coast.  Alden was in the hospital. He’d had a bike accident.

I skipped the rest of the text.

My heart sank.  This has happened to me before.  A text message and then, dread.  I felt my eyes well up. And I reminded myself to read the whole text first…stay calm and read the entire text.

Alden & Jame Startt, lead guitarist for the Parisian funk band, Urban Groove Unit; incomparable vlogger (Tour Talk); and the best photographer of cyling alive today (see Peloton Magazine).

Alden is this beautiful man who is a cross between Robert Redford, Anthony Bourdain and the best friend you could ever have – even if you’d just met him a minute ago, you’d feel it.  He’s intellectually brilliant, his voice is sexy and his energy perfection. I honestly think he’s maybe the hottest guy I’ve ever known – definitely the most beautiful man I’ve ever laughed with –  and I know if he were reading this right now, he’d be blushing, giggling.  He’d try real hard to be mad at me all at the same time humbled by my awe of him. His genuine humility, his authenticity, is probably the sexiest thing about him. And yeah, he’s easy on the eyes for sure.

Alden is a cyclist.  He travels the world and adventures for most of the year meeting the most amazing people, taking the most incredible pictures and just personifies to me – “enjoying life”.  He calls Vermont home, but I think Alden brings a sense of home to wherever he is and to whomever you are. He connects with everyone, from any background, anywhere.  You can’t help but be comfortable in his space – he just has that kind of energy. It’s a gift.  I honestly don’t know one person who has ever said a bad thing about him. But then again, no one would dare say a word to me – I’d kick their butt if they did.

I read the entire text.

Alden was reading my book while “recovering” — he broke his femur. “Call him, he would love to talk to you.”  I felt comforted by that line in the text.  Part of me laughed at the thought of him reading my book for any kind of recovery – but yes, my heart settled a bit. Tears had already rolled down one cheek, as I dialed.

The first words out of his mouth were “CARRRRRRRRRRMEN!” — and then, “Do NOT get on a plane to see me. Don’t do it!”  He was being sarcastic and yet, he wanted me to come – he knows that’s exactly what was about to happen.  I’d done it before when a mutual friend of ours was in the hospital. That time, there was no conversation about it, I just got on a plane and was there as soon as possible.

We talked for a while.  It was nice.  I had forgotten how much I loved talking to this beautiful soul.

In India hanging out with High Schoolers

He’s funny and endearing without even trying.  And whenever we chat it’s both a giggle fest and a learning moment.  Mostly for me, but I think for him too.  We shared our love of Anthony Bourdain and how much we missed him.  I kicked myself for not calling him when “Tony” died – but you know, I thought of Alden so much.  He truly is the most realistic version of a REAL Anthony Bourdain I know – minus the food and tats, add in the avid cyclist and skier.  But Alden is a story-teller, a lover of people, a traveler – an adventurous soul.  His natural good looks are nothing compared to his naturally pure gorgeous heart.  I am so lucky to have him in my life and so grateful that although his injuries are fierce and yes, he’ll be out of commission for a while, that it was nothing worse.   He’ll make a full recovery.  And that’s the thing about Alden – even while I’m tearing as he explains how bad the break was and how devastated he is knowing he’ll be in rehab for bit, he then expressed how in the big scheme of things, he was fine. He’s never a victim. And he’s always more concerned about others and their stories – he wanted to know more about my book and how it was going.  And he reassured me that even though he was still suffering from a concussion that he was excited to read it.  Hilarious!  But that’s who he is. It’s never about him, even when it completely should be.  He’s always curious about others – lovely, charming and so damn smart. I’m honored he’s my brother, my friend. And I’m so glad he’s okay.

Alden riding in West Marin County, CA in the spring.

So, I’m not jumping on a plane today to visit Alden. Though I did look at flights and I will be out in August for sure.  In the meantime, I put together a care package for him – I took a pic of a recent mural of Anthony Bourdain by Jonas Never at the Gramercy here in Los Angeles. I added in some other little funny-isms and sent that out yesterday after our talk.

Today, I thought about writing this blog post knowing that he’d hate me sharing his pictures from his private facebook page – knowing that he’d hate all the accolades and love I send his way.  I gush too much I’m sure.  But then I thought – I don’t care.  If I had LOST him, if my boy had died in that bike accident, I’d be writing this and sharing about him because I waited too long.  It would be a miserable thing.  And sad.  And you know what?  I don’t want to make that mistake.  I want to praise him while he’s here.  I never want to take for granted ever again the people I love the most.  Priorities.  He can be mad all he wants. I welcome his wrath.  I’ll be grateful for it actually.

Reach out to your loved ones today.  Seriously. Take this as a sign.

With love, Carmen

 

 

 

 

And They Call Themselves Christians…Disgusting!

AND THEY CALL THEMSELVES CHRISTIANS — PAHLEEZE!

This is my response to a Tweet and Facebook post and I HAD to share it here (original Tweet below):

43. Ain’t that sad? And we’re being encouraged to call. Lord help us. You’d think it’d be all Senators without question. Especially the “religious” ones. The Republican party — you know, faith and family and all that crap. I’m heartbroken by children being damaged by this senseless act — I’m just as heartbroken by all the adults who are standing by, using Biblical passages to justify their wrong-doing, their racism. Is there any question if these were little White blue-eyed children this would be happening? Not. One. Question. At. All. I am NOT trying to sell my book at all — I’ll give it to anyone who wants it, but THIS is exactly what my story is about — PEOPLE DOING THE RIGHT THING when a child was in need. Adults, stepping in and making sure a little brown Latin kid from the streets didn’t fall through the cracks and all of them — not knowing each other and not at the same time — just doing the RIGHT thing and BEING A GOOD AND DECENT PERSON. I’m so sorry, I’m so friggin’ angry about this… it’s killing me. This administration is killing all of us slowly.

 

 

Read my book if you need a reminder of HOW important WE ALL ARE to a child — to each other!

https://carmensuarez.com/canela/

 

 

Blabbering About Time

BLABBERING ABOUT TIME

As I re-read this journal entry, I kind of laugh.  Clearly, sometimes I should just put down the pen and drink my coffee.  I try and pick the “best” of what I’ve written in a week to scan and post…  Well, this goes off the rails a bit, but the point is Time is something I’ve been thinking a lot about – still am thinking about.

 

The Perfect Man

The Perfect Man  (an email exchange to Rache) 

———- message ———-
From: Carmen
Date: Wed, Apr 18, 2018 at 10:56 PM
Subject: Dinner stuffage
To: Rachel

Rache,

I love you, I really do. I love that you’re so worried about me. But honestly, I think this is more about you than it is about me.

You’re right – he was/is perfect.  Quite the gentleman, a lawyer – beyond successful. Good looking – in that crazy way we all dream about. And gurl, he picked me up in the Tesla – you were right (and uhem, I’m clear it’s one of several cars he owns).  He checked every box.  Tall, hot, them teeth – Lord help me, I almost lost it right there.  Great lips and a beautiful smile is my “Achilles heel” every time.  And most importantly, he surprised me with the tickets. Dinner and a Play? The brotha was working his magic for sure!  So old school and then, not-so-much. Truly perfect.

You’re right. He is the perfect guy.

Here’s the thing:  I’ve met several “perfect” guys. You know I have. I know what you mean by “perfect” so I’m not going to sit here and tell you the cliché thing that he’s just not perfect for me.  That somehow we were missing chemistry and all that good stuff because trust me, we had plenty of “CHEMISTRY” – he kisses lightly by the way, sweetly and kindly and…well, chemistry is not the problem, is all I’m saying…

What is the problem is that what makes my heart skip a beat is a much higher bar.  First, you know I’m not a fan of marriage.  I mean, I AM and I WOULD, but I wouldn’t trade my single life for your married life for a $1 Million dollars!  90% of my married friends are in miserable marriages.  Marriage has never been and is not my goal.  It is completely Mr. Tesla’s for sure.  To me, marriage would be beside the point. It’d be icing on a fantastic cake.  It could be a financial decision we make… I mean, I could care less about getting married, it’s never been my thing – more important to me…

You know what? I’mma lay it out. And if you have one of these “brotha’s” on your Facebook page, cool.  Hook me up again.  I’m game.  But THIS is what I think is the perfect man:

  • He’s not showy or flamboyant about his success, his intellect, his looks, his anything. There’s just an “IS-ness” about him.
  • He’s not a victim of his circumstances, instead, he’s empowered by it.
  • He’s crazy smart, genius level would be better. I need someone who can teach me something I don’t already know.
  • He’s socially comfortable in a crowd, but relaxed with one-on-one most days.
  • He’s confident and strong, except when he’s not – and completely okay with that part of himself.
  • A man who does not whine and complain for more than a minute before he gets to dealing with whatever’s not working.
  • A man who would never intentionally use his words to hurt another. Clearly never physically hurt another either.
  • Someone who understands what he has right in front of him – limited time – and he makes the best use of it.
  • I want a man who needs to be taken care of, who wants to be taken care of and more importantly can take care of me too. And any man who confuses that with financial or material needs, is clearly out of his league when it comes to me.
  • I want a man who is beautiful in the way that I mean it: a commitment to being better than he used to be and regardless of any mistakes, learns from them and shines anyways.  It’s an inner thing.
  • A man who isn’t conceited by his gifts, but instead consistently working on his “lesser skills”.
  • Extra credit or bonus points would be a man who doesn’t need to see me every day, but maybe wants too, treasures quality over quantity but respects what and who we are to each other.

And all that is just to start. For the record, those are all the same things I require for my friends.  Change the above from “man” to “friend” and read it again and you’ll get my meaning.  

Physically he’d have to be that which is pleasing to my senses. I no longer ascribe to a “type” because clearly I’ve been wrong so many times. Older or younger?  Honestly I don’t know.  There are pros and cons to both in my experience, but him NOT being afraid of ME would be a great thing. I know that sounds cra-cra even as I write it – but it’s not ME they’re afraid of — actually, it’s LOVE or the possibility of it… (that’s my perspective anyways). Cuz, you know, when I love, I love for reals.  It’s a little too much for most.  I get that.  I do.  But I ain’t changin’.  I love who I am.

And there it is:  the most important thing about LOVE and a partner to me today is this:  I don’t want to have to change. I shouldn’t have too. And I would NEVER want to change someone I fell in love with. I mean, that seems strange to me.  If I met you THIS WAY, why would I want you to be something else?  There are just some things I know for sure:  you can never change someone. You just can’t.  So, I want someone to accept me the way that I am – all of it: good, bad and the ugly.  And the beautiful.  And I’ll do the same.  I think what happens in any relationship over time, is, as you get to know someone you find ways to compromise those things that don’t work for each other. That’s not CHANGE – that’s just a natural course that happens when you love someone – when someone matters to you.  When someone is a priority to you in your life, you find a way to make things work because they’re important to you.  It’s a beautiful thing when it happens – but it’s never an overt or painful change – it’s just what’s next.

Look, we had a great time. Tesla man was lovely. And after all these years being “friends” on Facebook because of you — it really was brilliant to finally meet.  He’s absolutely stunning looks-wise and a I’m certain a wonderful man.  I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t attracted to him and thought of him a bit after he dropped me off. I considered the possibilities for sure – but he called me in the morning.  And I would never string him along – but goodness, he talked about marriage on our first date Rache! And that didn’t even bother me so much, but it was constantly talking about “the future”.  We hadn’t even gotten our appetizers yet!  Wow!  I was honest with him.  And he was sweet about it.  I would never play with his heart – you know it’s not my style and it’s just cruel. All the money in the world couldn’t make me be that girl, ever. So I told him the truth – I just didn’t see this going any further.

And lastly, because you know how much I love writing long-ass emails to you  – I don’t think I should have to try.  You wrote in your email that you didn’t think I was “trying”.  My friendship with you wasn’t something I had to “try” and figure out when we first met.  We just met and we knew we’d be friends!  It was easy.  We’ve had our fights over the years (because most days you’re so wrong, but whatevs – ha!), but we always find our center again.  It’s okay to argue and disagree – our friendship is solid so I expect that we’ll have our ups and downs – but never, not once, have I ever felt I needed to “TRY” and be your friend.  At the very least, the man I someday “marry” —  ‘cuz I know that’s your goal for me – has to be my friend.  Solid.  I need to feel safe that we can fight, argue, laugh, cry, shout, scream, laugh, be complete fools and still be solid.  And that, has nothing to do with trying.  It does have everything to do with trust.  I don’t want to TRY and be somebody’s friend. I want to TRUST that I already am.

So, there it is.  I love you with all my heart and soul.  And I love that you worry about me. But don’t.  I’m happy. If I wasn’t, you know I’d do something about it!  I’m an optimist. I can’t live in negativity for too long. But, I’m good.  I need YOU to stop focusing on me and my love-life and maybe start considering why you’re so obsessed with my relationship status so much.  Gurl, you know I say this with all the love in my heart;  what’s going on with you?  Call me. I’m still up.

Carm.

On Apr 18, 2018, at 9:04 PM, Rachel wrote:

Seriously, WTF? He’s the perfect man. I don’t get it. I just don’t. I don’t think you’re really trying.

😦

 

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