Big Country Blues Trailer

Big Country Blues Trailer
Sarah e Jacobs recognized as OUTSTANDING ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES at LA Webfest! And nominated for BEST ACTRESS IN A DRAMA at ITVFest! Click to watch the trailer!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Cardio: My Apathy

Pink. Shit. Everywhere.

I hate Valentine’s Day. And, no, it’s not because I’m single. I’ve always hated Valentine’s Day. While I’ve always been a passionate person, I’ve certainly never been a sappy one. In my younger days, it was a holiday where I realized that the boy I was dating didn’t know me at all. I remember going to Ninja themed restaurants, receiving Adam Sandler DVD’s, Sci-Fi books, and GMO corn syrup solids. It always sort of served as a reminder that my relationship wasn’t quite working.

BUT, all that said, that does not mean that I can’t have a heart on Valentine’s Day. After all, there are worse things to celebrate than Love.

And with the city’s landscape changing from speckled green and holly to a wash of pepto pink and hearts, it’s hard to escape the topic Hallmark so effectively shoves down our throats. And recently, having been challenged by someone with a fresh look on the dating scene, the idea of relationships has been on the forefront of my mind.

On a date, I was asked if I miss being in a relationship. It sort of stopped me dead in my tracks because the answer surprised even me.

 …the answer was yes. I do.

 And, now, this is a bold statement not just because it’s coming from commitment-phobe-me, but because as a single girl, you put those words out into the universe and it translates them into something entirely different. The mass market thesaurus spits out words like desperate and needy. And I can say, with certainty, that those words don’t apply.

But the honest truth is that I do miss being part of a team. Trusting, and maybe even more so, being trusted. However, not in a way that I’m willing to join any old backyard pickup league and settle for a pinch hitter.

People often feel the need to assure me that, “You’ll find someone,” or encourage with, “Don’t give up,” or state dumbfounded when I say I’m single, “But, why? You’re so pretty.” (?!?) Somehow everyone has decided that my life is lacking because I’m still cooking for one. But I think that’s just the opposite. I needed to commit to myself, make sure that I’m whole before I make any sort of commitment to someone else.

So I built a life that fuels me, with accomplishments I’m proud of. In the past 3.5 years, I’ve realized that no one else can make me happy. And they shouldn’t have to. Completing someone else is a big freakin’ job. And I don’t expect anyone to be able to fill my heart, or be my other half, or belong to me, or be the light of my life… or whatever other bullshit people are writing on Valentine’s cards these days.

But that doesn’t mean I can’t have a best friend, a relationship based on insane trust, a mutual respect for opinions and passions, compromise and communication, an immense openness. I do, in fact, want to create and share something awesome. And not in the unrealistic, fairytale way. But in the make-a-commitment, work-on-things way.

But this inward work had some ramifications. It seems in all my dedication to building my own life, I also may have succeeded in building up some fairly serious walls. A surrounding moat complete with sassy little, skeptical guards only really letting people get to arm’s length.

My initial instinct when faced with someone that makes me feel feelings is to fall. Fast. And hard. And I’ve done it more than once. I’ve quickly handed over my heart trusting that it will be held delicately with two hands. And the few times I have in recent past, effortlessly he’s let it slip between his fingers with an oops and a smile.

And more than I’d like to admit, it’s affected my approach. Without realizing it, I’ve actively tried to slow down my feelings. Rationalize and ruminate. Listen to my head, when my chest wants to beat and my brain resists rational thought and I talk with my hands and feel heat in my face. I learned to measure these responses and turn feelings into pragmatism.

And I’ve forgotten what it feels like to be unafraid of consequence. I used to say, “as long as I’m honest, I don’t care what happens” throwing myself into the world trusting that it was way smarter than I’ll ever be. Aware that hurt could come, but wanting all of it for the experience that it brings. Remembering that no matter what, feelings are fleeting and healing is inevitable.

After years of dating - truth shrouded in odd texts and games - I lost my selflessness in a cityscape of preservation. My love for feeling, layered under thoughts of being “smart.” I’m not sure when it happened, but it did. I told my Mom my issue, rationalizing this and overthinking that, and feeling out of sorts because it’s not the reaction that comes naturally. “Sarah,” she said to me, “stop it. That’s not who you are.”

For as open and honest as I try to be, I needed someone to hold up a mirror and show me that I’ve let my heart become a little cold. I’ve gotten pretty cynical about relationships. Dating extensively will do that to you. Trusting is hard, and my eyes are narrowed. When I see a couple fighting on the street I think, “Nope! I don’t want that!” But I completely forget that beyond the tears and raised voices is something worth fighting for.

I needed a fresh outlook that shocked my Valentine’s averse heart out of cardiac arrest. So I’m going to try to at least remain open to possibility. Just open my fists and shut my mouth. As complicated and simple as that is. Stop being so cautious and protective because of what I’ve had, instead of hopeful for what I could have.

I should trust that I’ve done the inward work and I’ll make room in my full life when the time is right. I’ve had plenty of men question if I’m able to do that because I wasn’t willing to do it for them, but I think if presented with the right opportunity, I’m not opposed to trying. And that is a nice realization to make.

So, I leave you with this: it’s Valentine’s Day. Which we all know isn’t complete without quoting an insightful cab driver and a dead poet, so…

My cab driver, Mustafa, had this bit of advice after a life assessing cab ride from Williamsburg to Park Slope, “Sarah, you’re smart. But be careful. Don’t be too smart.” A sweet man. We hugged it out on the corner before he flicked on his light and drove off into the bowels of Brooklyn.

And Rilke said this,

“A good marriage is one in which each partner appoints the other to be the guardian of his solitude and thus they show each other the greatest possible trust. A merging of two people is an impossibility, and where it seems to exist, it…robs one party or both parties of their fullest...development. But once the realization is accepted that even between the closest people infinite distances exist, a marvelous living side by side can grow up for them, if they succeed in loving the expanse between them, which gives them the possibility of always seeing each other as a whole, and before an immense sky.”

How nice to see someone and be seen as whole before an immense sky.

Happy Valentine’s Day.


  1. Awesome post Sarah. You said it best. It is so much more important to be happy with yourself. You can't rely on someone else to make you happy. Keep doing your thing! So much more important right now to do you. If you give that 100% then who knows what opportunities will arise! Plus, too many people who ask you if something is wrong don't really get what you are trying to accomplish. Other aspiring and hard working people just get it. It's not exactly the most important thing in the world! Peace!

  2. Wise taxi drivers are the best! :) Thanks for being so honest in your writing.

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