Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Just One

I wonder about her a lot.

On the walk to the parking lot after watching a movie alone. And before I tell the hostess at a recommended restaurant the number in my party – just one.

But there’s solace in the fact that it won’t always be this way. The scenic drives, the intimate concert venues and the can’t miss brunch spot.

I will come back with her and do those same things. Except that it will be so much better.

That’s what makes this season of loneliness worth the trouble. I feel like I’m creating my own roadmap of future adventures, even though I haven’t lived long enough to appreciate the ones I’ve already made.  

There’s a whole world out there – and she’s in it somewhere. I’m still waiting for her, but I’m not waiting on her.

“Just one,” I will continue to tell the hostess. “Just one…for now.”

Monday, May 2, 2016

15 Strong

Fifteen years with Type 1 Diabetes. All the highs, lows and in-betweens.

I was diagnosed on May 6, 2001. I’ve told the story so many times - injecting oranges, the nurse yelling at me for having cake and the initial car ride home.

I thought it’d be like a diet – restricting certain foods and the like – but, it’s a way of life.

I test my blood sugar, take insulin and repeat this process with each meal, snack or late-night craving.

There’s the high blood sugars, which usually means a headache, or the jittery feeling of a low blood sugar.

Then comes the insulin. If I take enough, I end up somewhere in the middle – neither high nor low – and where I’m supposed to be.

This daily, sometimes hourly, routine, has meant growing up quickly. I was shocked to get carded at the movies (with a full beard no less) the other day, but maybe that’s a good thing.

You see, whether it was grade school sleepovers, pizza parties or field trips, diabetes was always there. It was there before my mom signed the permission slip. And when I moved into my new apartment too.

But it’s never stopped me. With diabetes, I can still love, cherish and love some more.

I can take impromptu weekend trips, work for a TV station and one day, marry the woman of the dreams.

Fifteen years in, I’m 15 strong.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Last Forever

I started watching "How I Met Your Mother" in middle school.

A young, hopeful Ted Mosby scouring the streets of New York in search of the love of his life. Ted wears his heart on his sleeve - he's a head in the clouds guy that wants to make it all a reality.

Over the years, the show has been a source of comfort. In nine seasons, Ted is left at the altar, dates the wrong women and often wonders if he will even be married.

It's those moments when it all looks bleak, however, that he picks himself up and keeps trucking along. I always go back and cherish those rite of passage episodes.

It might be easier to settle, to enter a relationship just out of the sake of loneliness. But Ted, trials and all, holds out for "The One."

It's part of the reason why I purposely held off on the end of the show. I had hoped I would find her, like Ted, as if life works through a television screen.

But the truth is, I do not know if I am any closer to finding her. Ted's journey is a lot like mine - waiting and hoping amidst some bumps in the road.

He gets the girl though. And marries her.

In the words of the mother: "Funny how sometimes you just...find things."

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Take Two...

I am going to miss the mark.

It is not intentional, but perhaps ill-advised. And it’s probably going to be characterized as “experience” after an appropriate amount of time.

You see, I do not like do-overs. I hope I see my mistakes in advance so I don’t make them, if that makes any sense at all.

For years, I have written about finding a significant other and how I’d be “the best or nothing” - this better than Prince Charming-like ideal. I cannot promise that.

But, I can give the best of me.

There are days where the hurdles come, with or without warning. Maybe it’s road rage, missing a workout at the gym or something equally trivial.

I do not think I will ever be the best in my own eyes, but maybe that’s human nature.

Can I improve? Absolutely. But, to some degree, I always can.

I have this built-up Hollywood movie-like notion of what it’ll be like to find her - and I want to play the part too.

Lines memorized or not, I won’t skip out on the audition. I’m impatient, but at the same time I understand God writes the love story.

Maybe I don’t fit the character description, but I’ll play it to the best of my abilities - regardless of the twists and turns in the script.

That, or, I can just get a really good stunt double! 

Friday, January 1, 2016

Roadblocks

At one point last month, I was stuck in traffic.

The bumper to bumper, not sure when I'll reach my destination kind. But, it did not bother me. 

I am always focused on point B, whether its mapping out the destination in advance or planning my next social encounter. 

A roadblock, however, throws everything out of place. How long is it going to take? Will I get there in time? What if I am too late? Will I ever get there?

Those questions engulfed me in 2015, even when outside of traffic. Life does not follow a Google Maps time estimate, much less a rhyme or rhythm.

At the traffic stop, I waited patiently as Top 40 hits shuffled on the radio. I made it home, much later than I expected, yes, but maybe traffic is supposed to teach us patience? 

It will happen when it is supposed to happen - the significant other, the job promotion and/or whatever else life has in store. 

God sees the destination, even when I cannot understand the path. That's what I need to remember this year. 

It may seem like a roadblock on the surface, but the path - and ultimate destination - may have been the one I was destined for to begin with. 

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Today's The Day

I need to stop being so careful.

Planning, watching and waiting for something to happen. Life doesn't work that way. Predictability is no fun either.

I have gotten to a point where I have stopped worrying about finding a significant other. Any day, or moment, could be the day. That means placing myself strategically in social situations, or venturing into online dating, is forcing chance.

I believe that for everything there is a season. It lies in the hands of the man upstairs, not me. It is difficult at times though, I am an impatient millennial.

But, I need to continue to believe that anything could happen at any given moment. The drive to the grocery store, taking out the trash or even jumping to report on the latest breaking news. Those don't require plans, they just happen.

I'm careful by nature. I like to be in control. Giving up that ability is a wrestling match I need to tap out from.

Today could be the day, tomorrow could be the day or next year from today could be the day. I don't know, but I need to continue to act like it is going to happen, because it will.

Today is the day, whether it happens when I want it to. Or not.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Ride Or Die

It was the first movie set I almost walked on.

A story led me to a nondescript set of buildings in suburban Louisiana in search of an actor.

More than a year before his death, Paul Walker had been filming "Hours" in the Bayou State. The movie, a story of survival during Hurricane Katrina, would be one of Walker's final entries.

His Brian O'Conner character in the "Fast & Furious" franchise, however, remains a rite of passage for me. The first movie came out in 2001, the same year I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. And, every other year or so, especially after the "2 Fast 2 Furious" Miami sequel, the series became an integral part of growing up.

Unlike the superhero movies, the "Fast & Furious" cast did not have special powers or particularly defining roles. Rather, their strength lay as a unit, something anyone can relate to.

And, beyond the fast cars and women, the franchise sped into this sense of family and belonging, which is why news of Walker's death cut on equal levels of nostalgia and shock.

I never ended up interviewing Walker after visiting the movie set for my story on Louisiana's still booming movie industry. He had been busy filming all day.

But, despite Walker's passing, his on-screen departure in "Furious 7" goes back to that sense of belonging. I watched it twice, tears flowing and the recurring "See You Again" single still on repeat.

"Fast & Furious" will always be wired in my life's steering wheel. Ride or die, right?