Tuesday, June 30, 2009


I'm staving off a depressive state; the downward turn of my emotions generally happens when I'm alone too much. There's no long weekend for me - Canada Day (our answer to Independence Day, and only 3 days out) is on Wednesday, and I'm off until Thursday morning. From work, and from Emily. Thank goddess there is no long weekend for me or I might drive myself insane.

I learned a few things about myself at the beach last weekend:

- I burn very easily. This will only come as a surprise to those of you who don't know I'm a redhead. It should not come as a surprise to me, having inhabited this body for nearly 44 years, but I singed my lower legs badly on Saturday.

-Water has a way of bringing things to my surface. It comes from being a Cancer.

-My kid needs swimming lessons. She's ready. She laughed at the waves that crashed over her face, she rolled and plunged and swam for hours, impervious to cold.

-I like being in the company of women. I've known this for some time, but it comes as a delightful surprise each time I experience connection with other women.

- I gave myself a year to settle into this new life of mine. A year of planning and exploring, but not really searching for anything or anyone. My year is almost over. I came out to my ex gradually, it happened in waves between my birthday and his (mid to late July). We decided to separate at the beginning of August.

-While he has had three (countable) relationships since we separated, I have not had one. Then again, we have different criteria. And I was giving myself a year. Did I mention that my year is almost over?

-I cannot be with someone who is emotionally inaccessible. Ten years of my life, gone. Never again.

- I can't settle for being second to anyone, even a ghost.

Running. I've started running and it feels amazing. It lifts my spirits, it gets me out of doors and moving my body. I've come a long way from the woman who could barely make it out the door and into the car, because she was in so much pain. Somewhere over the last 20 months, I've left 130 pounds behind. Ands a lot more than that.

A week from Saturday (on my birthday, but that's just a coincidence) I will be meeting up with a group of my high school friends. I've known some of them since elementary school. If there are any people in the world who truly know me, or knew me at one time, it would be this group of women. Will it come as a complete surprise to them when I tell them I'm a lesbian? They're gonna want to know - girl talk, and all - if I'm dating, if I've been seeing anyone. I have no reason to hide. It could be another 25 years before I see some of them again.

I'm a strong, independent woman. I'm stronger and more independent than I've ever been. Even strong women get lonely. And that, on the eve of my 44th birthday, is where I find myself. I chose to be here - and I wouldn't change a thing - but in this moment, as the sun sets, and the rainclouds drift in from the west, I ache for something I've never had before. And part of me is horribly afraid that I will never find it.


~seelenschmerz~ said...

dear dear lovely woman...please please please give yourself time. your emergence and blossoming of who you really are cannot be accomplished in one short year. i came out going into year 43/44(?) but am just in the past year, @ 49, completely comfortable in my new skin, completely confident in who i am. one solid but not lasting (3 yr) serious relationship under my belt with a young woman far too junior for me. am i in a hurry despite approaching age? nah. why?? enjoy yourself. enjoy who you are. enjoy the new or old friends who love being with women like you do. that 'something you ache for' will come by, you'll see ;-)
wish i could be there to give you an enormous hug so i'll send a cyber-smooch instead....MUAH!

Ang said...

Hang in there girl.... you have already come so far. Sorry about the sunburn. I burn easy as well I have to be extremely careful. Keep your head up.

m.m.sugar said...

It is difficult to wait.

However, it might be helpful to remember that your fear is taking up space.

If you are able to shake off the cloak of fear perhaps you will make room in your life for that which would feed your heart and soul.

Never give up!

Camlin said...

Dear S - I felt better after a long bike ride. I'm notoriously hard on myself - I expect always to be further along than I am. It's amazing how fast I have settled, but I know I have a ways to go.Then again, I have to start somewhere....I'll take that cyber-smooch with thanks! I needed it.

Ang - I'm hanging...part of what's going on for me is the realization that a relationship that I was heading into was just not...right. The friendship is right, it's strong, and it's definitely still there - but it won't be more than that. Which is okay on a lot of levels, but it left me feeling kind of lonely.

Sugar - every time I think I've banished the fear, it leaps up and taunts me again. Until I think about where I've been, and how far I've come.

Thanks for the encouraging words, everyone. They've made a world of difference!

shane rocket said...

powerful post... you will find your way. you are too strong not to. happy early birthday. i also am redheaded and burn, right now i am sporting a nice lobster red and blisters so i advise sunscreen.

Camlin said...

Shane - isn't that funny...I have mental pictures of everyone, and I never thought you were a redhead.

There was sunscreen on Saturday. Just not enough...it was windy on the beach, and I didn't feel the heat until I went inside.

reeflightning said...

ahhh ... the creamy, white skin of a red head, how quickly it burns. take care of your skin camlin, the sun loves the fire of your hair and loves to mark you as his own. och, i must admit ... i have a weakness for freckles!

she, the right one, will be there when the time is right ...believe!

Camlin said...

I have a million of 'em...freckles, I mean. When I was a kid, sunscreen was something you used to give yourself a tan.

I believe, most days. But I've never been very patient.

Earth Muffin said...

You'll find it and when you do it will be wonderful. Hang in there!

Anonymous said...

I hear ya and understand what you mean. I am the same way in some aspects (well except the burning, I burn and then it turns to tan 2 days later). I am strong and want to do my own thing, can hold my own and don't walk on me cause I won't alow it. but at the same time can be very lonely if I don't have others to share my time with. Want someone in my life.

small town dyke said...

just found your blog, your story sounds alot like mine. keep your chin up it will get easier.

Maria said...

Of course you will find it. Of COURSE.

Camlin said...

With all this wonderful encouragement, I'm starting to shed the fear...thanks, everyone.

You are all amazing people, and I'm blessed to have you in my life.

~Just me again~ said...

Hi Camlin, I followed you via another blog.....first off sucks to get a burn. I was in Vegas last week, and I have olive skin. That sun is a killer.

I found the hardest part about coming out was my family, mostly my girls. My best friends know, but people at work, hmmm...not so many.

Anyways, hang in there, when the time comes it will happen ;)

Camlin said...

Just Me Again: Welcome.

I've been feeling more like my usual upbeat self this weekend. I think the sunny weather helped - we've had too much rain!

I am out to my girls (well - one of them is 5 so she knows as much as she can understand, which is quite a lot. And my 19 year old is as supportive as can be - the rest of the family, well...my parents know. My sister knows and is fully supportive. I have to get to work on telling other family members.

I'm not out at work. I live in the city and work in a small, Mennonite-based community. It won't happen for quite some time.

Thanks for the warm thoughts - I feel so much better today!

Robin said...

You will find it. You will.