I've had a lot of thoughts and feelings swimming around in my head for the last five months, and it's about time I've written them down. This post is a bit random. There's a few different unrelated sections just to get some thoughts out that have been rattling around for a while. Some of it is more recent and emotional (see the last two sections), and some of it has been more an ongoing thought process (first and second section). Feel free to read some or all or none. If you're reading none, I expect you to explain how you know I wrote this sentence. HA! Got you! Anyway, here it is.

Thoughts on Living in Boston

It's been just over two years since I moved to Boston. I have now lived here for 2/3rds of the time that I lived in Iowa, which is hard to believe. The time has passed so quickly. Now when I look back, it seems like Iowa was such a short period of time in my life, and yet is so filled with wonderful people and experiences.

Boston has taken longer for me to feel like I live here. There are still times I walk around and think about how I ended up here and how roundabout it was. It took me longer to make friends here than it did in Iowa. I would also say that the friends I had in Iowa were closer friends than any of the ones I have here in Boston save one or two, though I think as time passes, that will change here too. It's inevitable, really. Time has a way of doing that. I still miss the crap out of all my friends that I haven't seen in ages. Side note to said friends: come visit me. I have an extra room with a futon and comfy memory foam thingy. It'll be fun.

The East Coast is different than the midwest in a lot of ways. My ex fiancee had lived in upstate New York for a year, and she had told me about how people's attitudes were here. She didn't like it. At first, I'd say I felt the same way. Now I'm more used to it. People are more direct here. They don't hide behind the niceties of the midwest. I've realized that people in the midwest are just as rude, they're just not rude to your face. They talk behind your back, and to be honest, I think if someone's going to be rude or have an opinion, I'd rather them tell it to my face than behind my back. I can appreciate that honesty.

There's one thing I definitely hate, and that's the driving. Seriously, I'd prefer Chicago driving to Boston driving. "Massholes" is right, and wow, are people animated. The sheer amount of effort people put in to their road rage here... it's astonishing. I would also say it's a bit dangerous. I really worry about the consequences of getting that angry about something silly like getting cut off or whatever. I think I get it though. It's constant microaggressions on the road which eventually just builds up on a person over the years. Eventually people are just so fed up that they turn into the thing they hate on the road.

Another astonishing thing here is the cost of living and especially comparing that to the quality of what you get for that money. We're going through a heat wave right now with highs in the mid 90s. Central air is something seen as a luxury here because it supposedly never gets that hot in the summer. That's not been the case at all since I've lived here. It's been really hot every summer. I had to buy two window air conditioners when I moved into the place I'm living in now. The real estate here is expensive as fuck. And it's shit. The houses are old. The interiors are not maintained well. The electrical is from the 1950s. There are no garages. There's no place to go with the snow in the winter. Owning is becoming almost impossible as the prices are just outrageous. Rent is absurd. I pay almost twice what I paid in Iowa. There I had a 3 bedroom, 2 bath house with a full unfinished basement, a yard, and a two car detached garage. Here, I have a 2 bedroom, 1 bath upper of a duplex with a single parking spot, no real yard, no central air, and doors missing from closets. I miss midwest real estate so much.

One of the things I've really started to enjoy about being here is the proximity to everything. New York City is only 3 hours away. I've been there 3 times already this year. That's more than I ever thought I'd ever be in New York City. When I go now, I no longer feel like I'm just a tourist. I go for very specific purposes, and I'm familiar enough with the areas I'm going that I don't get that lost, though admittedly there's a lot I haven't seen.

I also enjoy the fact that Boston is a major city and stuff happens here. There's everything from big rock concerts, comedians, magicians, political rallies, protests, sports games, conventions, and all sorts of national monuments and history. There's always something to do, and that's pretty cool. It reminds me of Milwaukee, except bigger and better. And yet, Boston itself is not that big physically. It's kind of cool int that way, and I like it.

So yeah, those are my thoughts on Boston so far. It's been a good experience. I have no idea how long I'll be here. Maybe it'll only be a few more years, and maybe I'll put down roots. I really don't know. I haven't thought that far ahead. So we'll see.

Life Lessons I've learned

This has been a theme that's been in my head for a while that I'd like to iterate on over time. I've learned a lot of lessons over the years, and I figure it's worth sharing. Some are extremely relevant and prescient. Others...less so.

  1. Running from your problems is impossible. Those problems are in you, and they will follow you. Rather than run from them, it's probably better to just face them directly and either live with them or do something to address them. Neither of those options are fun, but they are better options than trying to run from yourself.
  2. Trust your instincts. They're almost always right.
  3. Don't listen to your anxiety. It's almost always wrong and will definitely always ruin your day.
  4. Know the difference between your anxiety and your instincts for obvious, aforementioned reasons.
  5. Making friends is the best thing you can do in life, because you'll never truly be alone, no matter how lonely you feel. Cheesy sentiment, but it's proven to be true for me. Whenever I get down and reach out, all my friends that really are my true friends reach back. I am so thankful you all are in my life.
  6. Dating is harder than any other thing you'll do in life. No, seriously. Given what I know, there's no one that enjoys the dating experience. If anyone ever tells you they like it, they're lying to you.
  7. You are likely your own worst enemy. You hold yourself back. No one else will ever care enough to be in your way more than you will.
  8. A whiney cat will never stop whining. Seriously holy crap... Do they never get tired of it?
  9. Never let your day be ruined by someone saying something stupid on social media. It is not worth the energy or effort. You don't get that time back. The argument won't be won. It's not worth it. Just don't.
  10. As an addendum to that, if there are people in your life, IRL or digital, that only bring negativity, drama, or unhappiness to your life, eliminate them from your life. Block them. They are not worth your time. Life is short and there's no reason to waste it on people like that. I have not regretted cutting those people out of my life.

Independence Day

I don't usually write in this blog unless it's a new year or I'm feeling down, and as much as I'd like to say that this time is different, it's not. I got broken up with yesterday. It's hard to even call it that, because the relationship was never defined in any official way in the first place, but it still feels that way. We dated for two and a half months and went on quite a few dates in that time. For me it felt significant and it feels pretty painful right now on the other side of it.

I gotta say...it sucks being shy. It sucks more being shy and dating a shy person. Communication is hard enough, and it's even harder when we're afraid to talk about important stuff. That ends up with us going two months before really discussing what we want in the relationship only to find out that I'm looking for a long term partner, and she was not. In fact, I believe the phrase she used was "I'm not even sure I'm capable" of a long term relationship. She was more interested in open, polyamorous relationships. And that suuuuuucks because we really liked each other. She told me that she considered me her ideal partner, and that blew my mind. I have had two relationships now where partners have said similar things, and that...I'd love it if that particular idea sank in my think skull because I need some positivity in my self image.

To be very clear to anyone that's reading, I'm not poly. I'm very much monogamous. In fact I think given my family history, we're all pretty well hard wired to be so. My past experience has taught me that I'm not really capable of diving my romantic feelings and attention. What happens when two appear in my life, as has happened a few times, is that one takes over and the other fades to nothing. I seem to be very devoted to whomever I'm with. I admire my poly friends for being capable of such things. I know some of them manage very complicated calendars for their dating life and various lovers, and that's super anxiety inducing for me. I'm happy it works for them.

Back to the more prescient matter at hand, there is a recurring theme in my love life, and it really needs to stop because it keeps reinforcing a particular insecurity I have. I keep getting dumped with little to no warning ahead of time. This time, we had a date on Monday that was just really nice. We had sushi and then saw a movie together. There was cuddles, hand holding, and kisses. We walked in the park afterwards. She said that she just really likes spending time with me. Towards the end of the evening, we realized there was only a few minutes before the last train. So she had to go, and we texted later feeling bummed that it felt a bit cut short. Still, we had plans to spend the 4th together since we both had all day.

So on Wednesday, we chatted a bit in the morning and then I asked what she wanted to do, and she said that she actually didn't want to hang out. I was caught off guard, and asked if she wasn't feeling up to it or something. She said she wasn't. I got that sinking, knowing feeling. I asked if everything was ok knowing full well what was about to happen. I even said to myself out loud "Girl, just do it and get it over with"... and I was right. Her reason: we want different things. She's right. We do, and because of that, we're not a good fit. The writing was on the wall from the moment we opened up to each other about wants and needs. So it ended up being the day we both became free of each other and independent again... get it...Independence Day? Sorry, am I drawing too much attention to the title? Probably? Yes? Alright then.

In all honesty though, I was frustrated. It was a one sided relationship in a lot of ways. When we were together, it was great. We had a really good time. I felt like I was the only one driving the relationship though. I was asking her out and setting up all the dates. Outside of those dates and a few times in the middle when I feel like she was more engaged and invested, I was the only one prompting conversation. At first it was fine, but over time it got more frustrating. She cancelled dates on me at least 4 times during that period. She had good reasons, but it was still a bummer each time.

Honestly after a while, I felt like if I didn't text her, she would never have texted me. She always texted me back when I did message her, but it really felt like unless it was prompted, she didn't really need me to be there. It was really easy to feel insecure, and there were several times I seriously just thought we were done because of lack of communication. I mourned this relationship twice before this week. And then after all that, I'd hear from her, and things were right as rain again. I even chastised myself during that time for letting my own self esteem and worth be tied to my feelings for a woman.

It bothers me that over two and a half months, she never once asked me out. I tried on numerous occassions to get her to meet friends, and that never happened. She had two dogs that I never got to meet, because she never invited me over. Her housemates were asking when they'd get to meet her boo, which was her pet name for me, and they never did...because she never invited me over. I give a person my everything, and it sucks when it's not returned. I wasn't getting what I needed to feel secure in the relationship. That could have been worked through though. I just didn't bring it up because I was afraid of scaring her off.

All that said, I still really liked her. She was fun to be around and just overall a really incredible person with a background that was entirely unique and interesting. She captivated me, and I'm sad that it had to end. So now I mourne this relationship a third and final time. I will move on. I'm going to try again. I'm not quite ready to right away, but I will in a bit. I'm really not looking forward to the first date slog again, but hopefully this time I'll find my lady that makes my heart flutter.

In the meantime...why does sighing feel so satisfying when you're depressed? Why does your heart literally ache when you are sad? Why do romantic feelings have to equate to addiction meaning the end to a relationship is withdrawal symptoms? These are questions I have thought a lot in the last 36 hours.


I'm going to talk about these because they're pretty deep seated and I struggle a lot in romantic situations because of them. There are some here that I've discussed in prior blog posts, but only in passing. Not as direct acknowledgement. So here goes.

  1. I do not feel like I'll ever be good enough for my partner. I can hear you all right now. "Jess, you're beautiful, smart, caring, compassionate, intelligent, and funny. You have a great career. You have all these unique hobbies. Why would you feel like you'll never be enough?!!" Simple...because I have never been enough.
  2. I feel like I'm boring. I know...I know...I just listed all those things in the previous one, right? Well, behind all those fancy robots and photographs, I'm a couch potato that's not motivated to work on projects I've thought about for years. I sit and watch YouTube videos on my work nights. I'm boring as fuck. Why would someone be interested in that?
  3. "Yeah, she's pretty cool, but she's trans." Fuck people who say this and think this. It's also a very real thing that I've had to deal with. Obviously I don't want to date those people, but you can't tell who those people are until after you've met them and they've rejected you because of your trans-ness. Rejection like that hurts, and the more it happens, the more I just feel like I'm not worthy of being loved. I consciously know this is not the case, but feels are feels.
  4. I constantly worry they'll lose interest and then worry that I'm going to over communicate to compensate. Seriously. I'm like a self-fulfilling prophecy. Instead of losing interest, they're just annoyed. I try very hard not to do this, but when your date isn't communicating with you, it's easy to fail.
  5. I assume they're just going to leave me in the end with little warning, possibly for someone better. Given my experience, hopefully you can understand why I would have this particular insecurity.
  6. Thanks to manipulators, I have a hard time trusting. It's difficult for me to believe someone at face value. I have to work at it.

I'm sure there's more, but this is what came to mind for me right now. I'm sure you have lots to say about this. So feel free to share your thoughts on Facebook.

Concluding thoughts

Geez, I don't know. The first two sections were pretty good. These last two emotional boulders...fuck. Yeah...that's all I got. I look forward to hearing what you have to say. Thanks for reading and for joining me in my emotional slog of a week.