I would like to sit down with all of you and have a chat. I want to let you know what’s happening in my life, because it’s big and it’s intense.

It’s no secret that I can be very impulsive at times. Or I can SEEM impulsive to the outside view. An example would be the time my realtor was taking me around to look at houses. We were inside the second one she’d ever shown me when I said, “I want it.”  She thought I was being rash.  What she doesn’t realize is that this moment of “I want it” was the culmination of months of screening hundreds of houses on MLS.  I knew when I was inside that little 1908 bungalow with the compost bin enveloped in a raspberry patch and a cottontail rabbit munching clover at dusk under the apple tree that this was my little dream house. Nothing the realtor said could change my mind about that.

When I saw C for the first time, there was an instant connection. I knew right away that I adored him. The more he spoke, the more smitten I became. When he walked around the car to open my door EVERY TIME, I swooned. When he consulted me carefully before ordering dinner, I smiled. When he taught me a new word (pica), my heart went pitty pat.

This is a kinky thing to admit, but I really get off on food talk and expertise. C has got that one in the bag. He stops at his local Italian market and bakery on the way over to pick up olives I’ve never tasted, breads I’ve never heard of, ingredients I haven’t seen since traveling through the south of France.

You know I like a well-read man. Not only is Walt Whitman in the “to be read to one another aloud” pile, but so is The Death of Ivan Illych and other Stories. Things like this make me wonder if I subconsciously submitted a wish list to the heavens and it was scooped up by an angel–one of those angels who is assigned to matchmaking detail.

Last night I finally cooked for him for the first time.  He’s cooked for me once and we’ve collaborated on a few meals.


You know I like a cultured man. Over stuffed sweet peppers, C told me about the D.I.A. He’s been a member for years and will be taking me there this weekend for my maiden voyage into one of the best art museums in the Americas. As he was describing the Diego Rivera murals to me, I wanted to pinch myself. Am I dreaming?

While the peppers were in the oven, C was putting up a bird feeder for me, a special one designed to hold meal worms. Nesting Orioles really like those. I had asked him where I might hang it so that orioles would feel safe at it while squirrels would not feel comfortable investigating it and dumping the worms all over the place. C had suggested the metal canoe rack at the water’s edge. The next time he came, he brought his drill bits and tapping tool. While playing assistant on the project (oil spritzer), I learned about drilling into and creating threads in metal.

So anyway,… I guess I could sum it up by admitting that we have been all but inseparable since that first date.  Wow, eh? We’re just entering our third WEEK of knowing one another yet it feels as if it’s been a few months. There is nothing I can’t tell him and I think he could say the same about me. We are working out a very functional system for communicating with mutual respect and consideration.

Here comes the part I want to talk to you about.  It has to do with that fine line between knowing when to compromise for the health of a relationship and losing oneself.

There are areas where C and I see things differently.  One is religion / spiritual beliefs. He is a traditional Catholic and I’m certainly not either–traditional or Catholic. Another is political stance, though we really aren’t that far apart on most of the major issues. Another is how private or public we are. You know I’m pathologically honest and that I have no problem revealing very intimate details of my life here on a public forum, content to let the chips fall where they may. C is not completely at ease with that much public openness.

I know many of you have significant others who do not appear on your blogs. Either you use a pseudonym or refrain from showing his/her face or both. So this is something C and I are working out now.

No, I don’t want to lose myself or give up something that is important to me for a man or for a relationship. But I do want to be flexible and willing to compromise. I believe that’s an important component of a strong, resilient and long-lasting relationship.

So here’s what I’m thinking.

I’m thinking of stopping blogging here. I’m also considering starting a new blog. The new one would be about exploring Windsor and the Detroit area (much the way I started this blog by exploring Waterloo).  I would like to do restaurant reviews again; I’ve enjoyed doing them in the past. I would also like to do something along the lines of what Foodie and the Beast do… showing the meals they make for one another in their own home and then rating those. I was thinking of something with the word “pilgrim” in it, something referencing our two cities in their current throes of decline and rebirth.

Anyway, I’m still in the brainstorming phase and haven’t even gotten a vote yet from my partner in crime. I would love to hear your thoughts, though.

15 responses to “Intense

  1. Kelly, I would think about what is best for YOU with respect to the blogging. You certainly don’t need to reveal anything about C if he is not okay with that–you can reveal what he is comfortable with and not anything more. I would be very cautious about changing any aspect of who I am–who I truly am–to please another person.

    You are a person with a broad range of interests, many of which you have shared here, and all of which I think your readers enjoy. I think that if you went through a time in which you shared food experiences it would be enjoyable for everyone. But why abandon Kikipotamus the Hobo after so many years? That seems so drastic.

    It seems to me that in a very real (but not complete) way this blog IS who you are. It has changed and been different over the years. Abandoning it for someone else makes no sense to me. There is much of you apart from him that is left to share. I think it will help you also not to lose everything in him to have a place that is just for what and who you are alone, apart from him.

    There may be other areas in which you and C are different that you don’t know of yet–and more ways in which you are compatible. It is hard to tell, even if you are living together and spending every second together with no one working. It can be shocking the things that evolve with time. If this is good and meant to be, it will be even more so in a few months and even more in a few years.

    Keeping the blog and blogging just about you (if that is his preference) can even be a way for you to hold on to yourself as you navigate this new relationship and to ensure that you are losing nothing, only growing and gaining and setting a strong foundation for days, weeks, and months to come.

    So this is my opinion, my dear friend, xoO

  2. I agree with above. You have history. No one should change that, but blend into your future and become history with you. If his spirituality is key to who he is, I would think in time it is what he would hope for in you. You have to decide, are you open to it? Doesn’t mean you have to instantly take it all on, just that you would be open to learning what and why he feels/thinks the way he does. I also would think you do not want him to change for you. It’s not the first time around the block, and although you may WANT it to be perfect, there is none of us who are. Prioritize what can and can not be acceptable before the relationship gets in too deep and one of you are hurt. Loved the blog. Best wishes!

  3. I am in agreement with O and Cathy. I wouldn’t want to abandon something that nourished me for another person, and nor should they ask you to do so. It is possible to blog while showing respect and privacy to your partner. I do this. My family is rarely mentioned on my blog. We have never spoken about it, it’s just somthing I knew was the right thing to do.

    I am so happy for you Kelly! My hubby and I have different views on many things, political and otherwise and yet we have maintained a marriage for thirty something years. I hope your new relationship will blossom in spite of these differences. xxx

    • Thanks to you, Olivia and Cathy for such great feedback. I hear where you’re coming from and am going to take your advice very much to heart.

      I guess I wasn’t very clear about where the dilemma lies. I really want to blog about my new relationship and would like to be able to include pictures of us from time to time. I think C might be okay with this on the new blog I am considering starting, but I don’t think he’s comfortable with my doing so on this blog. I can’t go into detail as to why without betraying confidences.

      I am not sure I have the time or energy for two blogs. But when I think about a new blog, one focused on local activities, I get a new surge of energy. I haven’t felt that for my original blog for some time, as evidenced by the sporadic nature of my posts. I also think the quality of the posts has dwindled.

      Maybe I could leave this one up and just see how often, if ever, I find myself wanting to come back and write here. If I do, I do. If I don’t, then I don’t. In the meantime, I could still start the other one.


  4. I would never want you to lose yourself or give things up that are important to you. We are two different people with an amazing amount in common who can talk very openly about where we differ. Yes, there are differences; you are more open and I am more private. But some of my viewpoints have surprised you; I think that I surprised you once again tonight and not by writing this. We talk so openly with each other and to find someone like that is a gift. Being able to compromise is a good thing but that is a two way street; I have to be a little flexible too.

  5. Damn! I should be doing this on my computer and not the phone! We do have different ideas on religion/spirituality but I would rather concentrate on the parts in that area where there are more things that are similar than different. The values that you have in that area meld with mine more than what you think. You are an amazing woman and I realize how special you are. We can work on our differences. I am more private than you, but now people know more than my initial. :) We can talk and that is HUGE!

  6. Wow. Chuck, so lovely of you to comment too!! Kelly, I love the honesty and openness you have expressed on your blog. I actually agree with everyone above. I think though you should go with the energy. Can’t you just start posting about these new areas without changing the blog? Or does it matter if you use this older blog or create a new one?

    You look so lovely in the photo. Beaming and happy.

    I have not been married for 30 some odd years nor have I been in a close relationship for 20 or so years, so I am not a good person to comment on how differences/similarities affect the relationship. I know nothing.

    I do want to say though, that in truth, I hold back on my blog. There are times when I want to write about current things in my life and I do not. such as when I was struggling with my brother and his attitudes toward me.

    I used to journal a lot in notebooks and I freely wrote out all the “anguish” and joys of my life and to me a blog feels like a journal and yet, I hold back here sometimes. Well, my brother got very upset once when I said he had found a girlfriend via and another woman, an artist, got upset when all I did was post pictures of her studio for which I had asked permission.

    Of course, no one knew who my brother was. The brother of sukipoet?? Who is that.

    this is a rather confused meandering. I know whatever you do blogwise and love wise will be an adventure and will flow you along through life with all its ups and downs and ins and outs and that flow, that’s what matters. Hugs to you.

    I am so happy for you and Chuck. Blessings, suki

    • Suki, Thank you so much for taking the time to post these thoughtful words. I am like you. I either have to journal here or I will do so on paper, or in my Penzu online journal. I can’t stop journaling now after almost 40 years of doing so.

      The reason he is not comfortable with my posting things about him on this blog is a personal reason I cannot divulge without betraying his confidence. So that part will just have to remain cryptic to the public.

      I may well keep this as a place where I pour out my personal musings while starting a new blog that is more for our trips and culinary adventures.

      That’s interesting about the two people who became upset with you about your blog. I have upset people two times with my writing here, but both times I had crossed a line and should have known better.


  7. As long as you don´t delete / forget the password to this one, I´d say start a new one.
    I completely understand the concerns of the girls here who don´t want you to loose yourself but I also understand the “surge of joy” feeling for you.
    Start a new one, give us your new adress and build a happy new home. If you feel the need to revisit your old home town it will always be there. :D
    Happy to see you happy.

  8. Hi Kelly
    I haven’t been on your blog for awhile & I’m so glad that I checked in this week. I’m very excited for you! There has been such a dramatic change for you in your life since you became an ESL teacher, I think this new relationship sounds fantastic, I’m happy for you to be with a well educated man that has your heart doing flip flops. The new blog idea sounds good.
    Follow your heart. Best of everything…Big Hug…Dianne

  9. I can’t resist the urge to weigh in. I find that as soon as I say, “I’m uncomfortable with…” or “I would never…”, that’s the next thing I’m up to. So a wink and grin to Chuck, and I think it’s awesome you introduced yourself.

    Kelly, here’s my experience with religion. My partner has buddist / atheist tendencies, is uncomfortable in christian circles and relaxed in jewish circles. And I have a solid christian background. But we find that we’re both spiritual seekers, and our common approach seems to be more important than our foundations. Almost every Sunday morning we have a spiritual discussion that periodically has him looking up scripture to read from the original hebrew. I am more nurtured by the fluidity and inquisitiveness of our discussions than by those I had with lifelong christians in a formal church setting. I find I attend church much less, because it’s something we don’t share. And I’ve learned we’re both more comfortable if I attend alone. When we go together, it’s sometimes hard for him to resist a barbed remark or two to release his tension. It snaps me out of denial that we can flow between both his camp and mine. But that space between, we’ve found to be quite sweet.

    Re the blog, my vote is to follow the energy. I would grieve if you move from sharing personal growth, because I appreciate lurking in the background and finding our common resonances, and feeling connected to your world. We grow toward light and inspiration, and it’s the inspiration that moves us. A friend tells me that there are patterns to our lives, and some of us (like me) bring things in and have trouble letting go. I have long job stints, have been in my house over 25 years, have associated with the same social circles for a similar length of time, I try changing myself and the world around me, rather than relocate physically or socially. You, on the other hand, are less inclined to stay in one place. I see you as being brave about making changes when things aren’t working. You pick yourself up, relocate and reinvent yourself. Your core and quest stays true, but the environs vary. And when I think of that, despite my attachment to this site and format, it only seems natural that your blog would move and change.

    Many hugs, M

    • Mary, I’m SO glad you couldn’t resist the urge to weigh in. You have known me much longer than anyone else who reads this blog. You know me and have known me. So thank you so much for sharing this about your relationship with your partner, and for giving your insights into me and how I usually work things in life. That means a lot to me. Today I told Chuck who you are to me, the kind of friend you’ve been to me and how much your friendship meant to me when I was a very confused young person going through a self-destructive phase. You’ve helped me reach a decision. Love and hugs, K

  10. Seems others have said everything I might have mentioned. Seems C. Has a good reason wanting not to be on this blog … I’m hearing you wanting to respect that! Sounds like a done deal. Will you continue talking about teaching on the new blog?
    Sign me, one Jewess married to one lapsed Catholic, who is very private, and tells me what I can’t post about him on my blog! I almost always respect that! ;-)

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