Alisa. 37. New Hampshire. Married for almost three years to this wonderful, funny, smart guy. Previously married. Went through in-vitro fertilization to have my five year old magical son Keegan. Stepmother to the charming Isabelle (6). Gushingly in love with our baby boy Harper(1). Policy Wonk and dreaded bureaucrat. Lover of fine cuisine, honeybees, truly romantic moments and the underdog.
Curried Beef Short Ribs

Note: I found this was more realistically four servings.

Finishing this dish with lime zest and juice brightens its rich flavors.

Yield 6 servings (serving size: about 3 ounces ribs, 2/3 cup rice, and about 2 1/2 tablespoons sauce)

2 teaspoons canola oil
2 pounds ...continue reading

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My friend R's marriage continues to deteriorate rapidly. She is discovering all of these things she never knew about her husband and family. She spends her time questioning her reality and feeling the deepest pain. She's lost but she comes to work and she goes home and she takes care of her children. She is living. Her situation is now not at all like mine was.
My friend Lindsay is two months out of her relationship. She was also hit by a brick. She is caught between moving on and being ambushed by memories. I really like her analogy to a car crash.
I have thought about this a lot over the past year. How relationships can leave you with PTSD. I don't even mean they have to be bad relationships. But for many months, years afterwards I think you can be transported back by a memory. I am by no means saying that my marriage was a prisoner situation. I am completely responsible for who I was inside of it. But for the longest time I had to consciously shake the habits of being that person. I had to retrain myself on what my value was and what I wanted for myself. And when entering a new relationship Jeff and I constantly talked about what we brought in with us. We called each other on behaviors and pointed out that they were remnants of a time that doesn't exist any more. We made a promise to look at this relationship with fresh eyes and clean slates. We apologized when we slipped into old routines. We pledged to be bullshit free. But even months later I had to mentally restrain myself from touching Tom when I followed him up the stairs of his house. And I slipped a couple of times and called him pet names. And I had to stop buying things I knew he liked to eat and make plans that were on the path to the future we planned together. And it was strange and it was hard. But it was good. And there were moments where I soared because I felt so free and so much thrill about writing my own story again. Tom never kept me down. He always encouraged me in my educational and career pursuits. But I don't think we ever really matched each other. I did not feel like he respected or understood what makes me, well me. And I accepted this as the way life was supposed to be when you commit to loving someone. And I allowed myself to create a world that revolved around his moods and peculiar habits. And so did everyone else in my life that wanted to remain close to me. There is such freedom in not tip toeing. And next to so many people it was not bad. It wasn't as emotionally detrimental as some relationships and I left it relatively intact. But it was my own personal level of bad. My personal failure. My reward for being arrogant enough to believe I could love enough for both of us.
If you are getting over something be patient with yourself. Forgive yourself the slips and perceived backslides. Acknowledge them and ask yourself what it means. Maybe it means nothing. Let it go. Unlearn the bad habits that will drag you down. Forgive yourself for whatever extra sensory perception you think you should have had to avoid the relationship in the first place. It's all steps in a path. You'll move more quickly without dragging the other person's lifeless carcass along.
I spoke with my divorce attorney today but in her capacity as my friend. She congratulated me formally on our engagement. I asked if she thought I was crazy. She said that she guessed I had learned quite a bit the first time around and I wouldn't enter into something lightly. Then she asked me if I was calling her to do my pre-nup. Funny lawyers are so rare.

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