“Love Thy neighbor” this quote comes straight out of the bible, the book of Mark, as I recall. Isn’t this also a part of the Golden Rule? I take these bible passages literal, I am trying to climb the stairs straight up to heaven, so I figured I would start here first.
In the past blog, I mentioned innocently joining a website I thought was intended for reconnecting with people from my past, especially those I had endured pre-pubescence and full on pubescence with; my high school pack. Please don’t think I am completely insane, this was not an adults only friend finder kind of spot, there were boundless amounts of children’s accounts, and for some reason I thought that gave it clout. I was duped into believing this was a site of virtue.. okay maybe not virtue, but I didn’t realize it was a sexually charged meat market Mecca.
At first, I uploaded a picture of my three dogs, awww, adorable right? So for a few months I got hardly any hits, no one from high school found me. I think I had 3 pity friends. One night I was bored and my sister had recently taken pictures of me on my new Harley Rocker C so I decided maybe if I put up pictures my old friends would recognize me. I uploaded some very tasteful face shots of me on my new shiny bike. By morning, I had hundreds of hits to my profile and scads of friend’s requests. At first I was taken aback, this was not what I expected or what I wanted. I let my profile sit for several days while I contemplated how to handle this new found adoration.
My husband barely ever touched me, even in the beginning of our relationship. Once we went over 2 years without having sex. He simply was not interested in sex, or sex with me, or women…well, I am really not sure what the root of the problem is or was, but I had always blamed myself. I felt that I wasn’t pretty enough, skinny enough or good enough for a man, even my husband, to want me. He reiterated the fact that he was disgusted by me throughout our 16 year marriage and I took him at his word that it was my fault and that all men would feel that way.
So, I was astonished that men were attracted to a simple modest picture of me. I considered deleting the site, but I must confess I liked the attention. Actually, I thrived on the attention and after a few days it was like a drug. In the beginning, I had my real name and city and my website listed (remember I thought this was a friends finding friends site). I met a couple of very nice men and enjoyed sending casual messages back and forth, but I also had masses of mail from men who only had one thing on their mind. Quickly, I came up with a pen name and my alter ego that desired attention emerged. Then, I deleted any way I could be traced to the site. I could not afford to be recognized; I was well known throughout my community my name is VERY unique and I was still married but gaining the strength and confidence to plot my escape. I took some PG-13 rated pictures of my abs, rump and legs with my webcam and posted them. “If pictures of my face worked, what would a little skin do?” I wondered. Sure enough, I got 1,000 times the attention (at one point being in the top 500 popularity of thousands of people). Men were buying my pictures and vying for my attention. I quickly came up with rules of engagement. I would only talk to men that were married, or men that were geographically too far away to be of concern. I now laugh at my ignorance and stupidity, it seemed rational at the time and I couldn’t afford for someone to recognize my alter ego at Wal-mart or the mall.
There was one man I broke all the rules for, we became friends and chatted from the very beginning. He had noticed the pictures of me on my Harley, back when I had my REAL information posted. I think his first message asked if I was just sitting atop the bike for a photo op or if I could ride it. What he didn’t know, was that I am not your average girl. I am a tomboy, of course it was my bike and I rode! To assume anything else took away cool points I had worked very hard to gain! Then, he began asking me to go on rides with him and his friends. At first I made excuses, I was already breaking my rules of engagement for him, but I still didn’t want to complicate my life by having to explain how we met. Plus I knew how devastated he would be when he met the real naïve, quiet, insecure “me” and not my sexy outgoing alter ego.
He was in the Navy and we would send each other short messages occasionally. Eventually he gave me the email to reach him on his ship when he was gone and I confessed to being unhappily married. He assured me that this was group riding he was inviting me out on and that there were other women in the group and other married members, and although I felt better about it, I was nervous. At one point, he posted a comment on one of the pictures of my face saying he liked it better than any of the ones of my body. The vast majority of the men posted comments on pictures of my body, or the “hot” pictures of me. This guy liked a simple picture of my profile and me smiling, and unlike 95% of men, he also never asked me to send him naked pictures of myself. In February, he noticed a picture of a new tattoo I had recently gotten down my back and we began conversing again, but when looking at his profile, I noticed he was knee deep in a relationship and I didn’t want to complicate his life or mine. However, he continued to send me messages and invite me on motorcycle rides.
February was when I decided to design my flight from my husband and my broken marriage. I picked a date in mid May, my selfish mother knew that I would be leaving my husband and that I was unhappy but she insisted to have one last visit to the South and to the beach. In less than 2 weeks of my mother leaving, I would pack my things and be gone. My sister had agreed to let me come and live with her and her family in Utah, half way across the country, and she would help me get on my feet. I am a planner. I am not spontaneous, part of me loathes spontaneity, I like knowing where I am going to be and with whom I am going to be with way before any event. So, I began planning and getting everything that I would need together for my secret departure.
In April, I received a message from my internet friend. He had light heartedly referred to being in my city that day and if he had known where I lived, he would have come and gotten me to ride. I giggled to myself, although my address is technically in that city I live almost 10 miles away. Casually I inquired as to where he lived. My rules of engagement didn’t matter now I was going to be gone in less than a month. To my surprise he admitted to living just down the street and around the corner. I laughed, how ironic, WE WERE NEIGHBORS! I had run past his house many times and had probably even waved to him. I sent him a message saying “You could, or I could just walk down the street”. So I did. I leashed up my dog and walked down to his house.
We got along fantastically from the start. Knowing he was in the Navy and an early riser, I hesitantly admitted my plan and I asked if he would help me pack the truck. He agreed. The next day, after casually texting he invited me for a drink but in order to gain admittance he referred to me as his wife. The rest is history! Within 5 days, he was begging me to stay and not to move. Remember, please, how I feel about spontaneity and I had spent months cleverly devising my plan of escape and had a new life lined up in Utah. At first, I said no. To which he asked if he could fly to Utah to date me and I agreed. How could I stay in the same neighborhood I had once lived with my husband, how could I live with someone I barely knew?
We have spent almost every day together since that first day, he was very persistent ha ha. We were best friends and soul-mates immediately, it simply felt natural to be with him like I had known him all my life. Although my mother has now disowned me, I am thankful that because of her selfishness I was in the right place at the right time. I could not help it, life and love were entering my life and although I had shut off all my emotions to endure all those years of a deplorable marriage and this was not in my plan I recognized that what I was feeling for this man was true and honest and good. I couldn’t walk away from that. We agreed that I would move in with my sister for a few months while things settled down, he would come and visit me, and then I would come and live with him.
I realize now, I had never been in love with my ex-husband. My mother forced both of us into marriage. I was 16 when he proposed and he was 19 neither of us ready to make a commitment. Actually I have never been in love. But now I have been blessed and I have found true love and my soul mate! I have never felt like this before. He consumes my thoughts not only when we are together but also when we are apart. He is the first thing on my mind when I wake and the last thing at night and he is always in my dreams at night. I cannot imagine my life without him in it. I would do anything to love this man and to be with him for the rest of my life and into the next.
So I figure this is a good bible passage for me…. “Love Thy Neighbor”…well, yes thank you I will! I will work on improving my adherence to other commandments soon!