What's your Sign? [ 2003-10-14, 1:12 a.m. ]

This weekend flew by - or, more acurately, never seemed to arrive, probably because Kent was at the office all day, both Saturday and Sunday. His work schedule permeates almost everything we do, but I feel somewhat powerless to complain. Kent finds his job very satisfying, and is a dutiful Virgo with an impressive work ethic, so for him there is no option other than working hard, all the time. I respect that quality immensely, but I get frustrated by it too.

I've always been someone who loves change, but now I am part of something permanent, which is a strange feeling. Additionally, that permament thing (i.e. Kent) is a highly committed workaholic, meaning that I am by proxy committed to his job as well. It's a hard thing for me to accept - I've never thought of letting a job dictate my life, but sure enough, it's kinda happening. And what' more, Kent likes it - his job, I mean. He likes working hard, likes getting totally immersed in a job. I just can't relate.

He and I are drastically different people, and have very different outlooks. Kent is very single-minded, focused on his career, his ability to achieve success, his ability to be good at his job. His work ethic impresses me, but it's uncomfortable to feel that my future hinges on his career. Whether I’m looking long- or near-term into our future, all decisions seem to hinge on his work - where we live, whether or not we buy an apartment, when we take vacations, etc. I am a flighty Gemini, and I don’t like being tethered. I’m also a control freak, and the idea of me not being in complete control of our future is maddening. I want to be able to go where I want, when I want, how I want, and I want total creative control over all aspects of planning. Once finances and careers and family and relationships are taken into consideration, that becomes easier said than done.

I never paid much attention to astrology and compatibility, but what I’ve read cautions against the Virgo-Gemini pairing. I can understand why. I am an air sign, Kent is earth. I am very much the described air sign - “They don't want to stay in one place or remain with what is safe and familiar. They need to constantly feed their heads with the new and inspiring. They are not sure what they believe in, their beliefs change with the seasons and the winds. They get bored easily, and need constant mental stimulation.” Yup, that’s me. I thrive on change, and I can’t imagine doing anything for a long time. I am committed to my marriage (and I adore my husband), but the idea of being tied to Kent’s career makes my chest get tight with anxiety. I've given up some of my independence not only to another person, but to all of the mitigating factors in his life as well. I'm sure that seems like an obvious element of marriage, but it's a frightening feeling for this air-ess. Please don’t take that to mean I am panicked at the idea of commitment; on the contrary, getting married has made me appreciate the act of commitment even more, and I take pride as well as pleasure in actively working on maintaining a strong marriage.

Kent is an earth sign – “They don't want to fly away - they want to build a solid future here. Earth people can seem to be stuck in the mud. They may have a hard time changing their opinion, logical or not. They could have difficulty moving to a new place or changing plans.” You can see why astrologists caution against us a match.

But what’s a girl to do? You meet someone, you fall in love, you work on your relationship, you decide to create a life together. I’m not an especially sentimental person, and I don’t believe in the “soulmate” concept. I believe that either Kent or I could have met and married other people, given a different set of circumstances. But the only set of circumstances that matter is the one that played out in real life, and so when this Gemini girl started dating a Virgo man, she threw caution to the wind and let the relationship grow, the stars be damned.

Do we fight? Yes, all couples do. Are we incompatible? Lord, sometimes it feels that way, but I like to think not. Actually, I like to think, “Who cares?” If relationships were easy, everyone would be in one, right?

(And I must interrupt myself to make it clear that KENT AND I ARE VERY HAPPY. WE ARE NOT FIGHTING OR ARGUING OR EVEN DISAGREEING ABOUT ANYTHING. REALLY. I ADORE HIM. Carry on.)

I know that given the choice, Kent would rather spend the weekend with me than at work. I never for a second worry that he will ever choose his career over us. I never even worry that such a decision will need to be made. It's just that every now and then, when he is stuck at the office and I'm homesick for California, I start daydreaming about packing our bags and moving with Kent to some anonomous town and starting a new life there. It's not going to happen, because life has taken us to New York and decided we need to stay here for a little while longer, but I like to imagine all the possible scenarios that are out there for Kent and I. Most of them involve never having to take the subway again.

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Also of note this weekend was the first official Cooking Club Dinner with my awesome Brooklyn girlfriends! Britgirl, Biscuit, Em, Beck and Beck’s sister, Sar all came to my apartment Sunday night and it was truly fabulous. We’ve decided to form a cooking club that will meet once a month and we’re going to have a theme for each dinner. The theme this weekend was Comfort Food, and everyone did such a great job! I felt so proud of all of us for planning and executing an actual event – no small task considering everyone’s schedules. But by far the best part was that once we were all sitting with our food and wine, we had some really great conversations. Beyond the usual light chit-chat or gossip, we really, seriously talked about careers and kids and family and New York, and I found that to be the most comforting thing of all. Over the past few years, I’ve changed jobs and apartments, and been in and out of relationships, and now I’ve finally reached a point where I feel like I have a great group of girlfriends – people who are at a similar place in their lives as I am, and who are tons of fun to boot. It’s invaluable. Never underestimate the importance of your friends. I’m working on an entry that will delve more into the intricacies of friendship, but for now just know that if you have at least one true friend, you are lucky.

m.

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