(Originally posted October 9, 2009)
This is a great illustration for two reasons: 1) it gives a great synopsis of my life story in 5 minutes and 2) it’s me walking the talk about being authentic right from the word “go” in relationships. This is ACTUALLY only my SECOND email of any significance to Mary, and the one that immediately follows her long wait for me while I was at the Wide Awake program:
May 7, 2009—Email—Brian to Mary
Hello sweet Mary!
I know it has been a while since I have gotten back to you, but busy and wonderful times have happened in between! As I sit here re-viewing your emails, I have a wonderful, warm, fuzzy tingling spreading from the back of my neck to my whole body…this is a feeling of deep comfort and…also…I’m looking for the right word…connection/anticipation, something like that. It feels, mmmmm, yummy!
So now it’s 10:30 pm my time, and I’m drinking a cafe mocha, which means I may not get to sleep tonight, but at least I will get to have the pleasure of being in touch with you and sharing more of who I am. I have clearly decided to be completely open with you and share everything that is going on with me, all that I am thinking and feeling….
I think I will go along with your email below and comment my thoughts and things that are brought up for me while I read it, and also anything else I can think of.
It’s interesting when you talk about fears and our inner and outer selves. For the first 17 years of my life, both my inner and outer selves were very fearful and terribly shy. Then for the next 24 years, I found ways to grow my outer self to be more bold, but still inside was that fear that came from a very old belief. When I was 3 years old, my grandfather, who I loved very much, used to call me “donut belly”. I took this to mean that I was fat, and therefore ugly, and therefore unloveable. I kept this belief in my heart for the next 39 years. It was the reason why I had such shyness around women and the primary reason that kept me from loving and accepting myself. (And this is why, as you see in this video, I did not ask a woman out for the first 42 years of my life):
Because I did not love and accept myself most of the time, I got my love and acceptance from others, so I spent much of my life designing myself to be everyone’s best friend, so they would love me. In that context, I had no interest in learning who I was–it was much more important for me to learn who other people were.
In addition, since I didn’t see myself as loveable, the way I did relationships was like this: first, fall in love with a woman and then immediately think “she’s amazing…she’s WAY out of my class”. With that belief, it meant that I would settle in my love relationships because I believed that I was not worthy of getting everything I wanted in a love partner. However, although I settled in my marriage (not that there was something wrong with her, we just were not a match for each other), I have no regrets because everything had to happen in the order and time that it did to lead me to this moment, which is one of the BEST moments of my life…Yes, right now, talking to you in this email. Over the years, I realized that my wife was never going to change to be what I wanted. In this case, the two big differences between us were that I am a “people” person and she was a “things” person, and also I want a great deal of loving intimacy and sexuality/sensuality in a love relationship and she did not need that with me. So I was faced with two choices: 1) leave to seek out someone else who was a better fit for me, which would break her heart (at the time I thought I could do that, although now I believe a broken heart belongs inside our own beliefs), or 2) I could stay in an unhappy marriage. So I chose neither! I began to drink lots of wine, which took me to a place where I could believe that things would somehow magically work out. But the drinking became a problem for me–it became an “addiction”, and eventually I found the strength to choose to both leave the marriage in hopes of finding someone who really fit what I was looking for and to seek help for my drinking. I have still had struggles at times with drinking, although most people don’t even see it as a problem, but it is my desire to not drink at all anymore. Again, though, I have no regrets, because seeking help for the drinking is what first led me to look at who I am and who I want to be, and I would never have come to The Option Institute (www.option.org ) if I had not been drinking this way–so I am actually very GRATEFUL for that!! Had it not happened at all, I may have gone through my whole life “sleepwalking” and never gotten to know myself and worked in myself to create a person in me that I really love and like!!
Mmmm, like you I am also happy at being able to find great joy in the simplest moments of life. I’m attaching something I wrote to Bears about a very special moment to me for you to read…it was real!
Ahh, what a blessing it is for you (and me) to see the beauty of living in the moment, and for you to be able to pass this idea to your children! I spent so much of my life living in the past in regrets or the future in fear, but now have finally found that the safest, most lucious place to be is in this moment…and now this moment…I see life like a beautiful string of moments, like endless strands of tree lights in the backyard on a summer evening!
Now on to love relationships for me. As you heard, I was terrible at this until I was 42 years old! When I was in a relationship (which was not often), I was very loving, but also very needy and I would discard major parts of myself to “save” the relationship. No more. Now I know exactly what I want–I have a clear “wants list” written down, and I believe that I can get all or most of those things. I, like you, am totally comfortable in being alone, and I would be fine with being alone for the rest of my life–so I will no longer settle for a romance that is less than spectacular! With this being the case, every moment of every relationship I am in for the last 4 years has been wonderful. If it was not, I was OK with parting company on great terms, or giving someone the instructions to break up with me as soon as they saw that I was not what they were looking for. In being in relationships this way, I have had two women who broke up with me because I don’t ever get angry and that was something they could not deal with–they are the only two who I am no longer friends with. In addition, my two best friends in all of my life are two of the women I have been in relationship with since I changed my life 4 years ago. One of these is Karen, who is my best friend, we talk almost every day. Neither of us has ruled out a relationship again someday in the future, but for now I am not what she is looking for, and so I am open to the universe for other magical relationships that may come into my life. Certainly my inner voice speaks to me of how comfortable I am in sharing with you and the deep joy I feel in not only reading your words about your life, but the wonderful feelings I have inside that comes along with your words! And, of course, you are a very beautiful woman as well, including your eyes, which are so important to me when it comes to not only physical beauty, but also romance…to look into someone’s soul and connect spirits with them when talking, snuggling, even sexual intimacy through eye contact. Whew, OK, enough of that for now–lol! By the way, I am a man who thinks that intelligence and the mind are very attractive and one of the top 5 things I look for in a romantic partner.
I, too, believe that I don’t need to be rich to be happy. In fact, when my wife and I did have a big house with a view and we drove nice cars (although I DO miss my little convertible!), it was also the unhappiest time in my life. However, I’m also aware that it is something I would like to have if possible, since it opens additional doors into both experiencing new things in life–creating memories, and also it can help as a tool to reach and inspire more people (as in, for me, being able to have enough money to make inspirational movies). But again, it’s not a necessity for me.
Finally, for now, I would love to hear more about your “reading” of people by their photos! What are the details? What do you look for and what are the clues? Are they specific things or just an overall feel from the whole photo? I will send along a photo that is not on my page for you to use as an example if you like, to have fun analyzing. Just so you know, one of things that I want in love relationships is to find out what the other person is passionate about and learn about those things and why they spark such a deep love in the other person–this is a wonderful thing for me!
So, Mary, have a wonderful day, I am loving this interaction, and I hope to hear from you soon! Love and smiles,