Liz Huston

Original Art, Musings and Photography

An Anniversary That Falls Like a Ripened Fruit

Two years ago today I went on the perfect first date.
It was a simple evening now that I think about it, but still, perfection. We spent more hours than I can accurately recall at the Griffith Observatory; looking at the stars, talking about Galileo, philosophy, the universe, exploring the grounds and just really enjoying each other’s company. He was so smart, so charming (in an endearingly awkward way), and kind. The conversation flowed effortlessly, and it tickled my mind in a way that was as satisfying as a drink of cool water after an intense run.

I remember that I could feel myself starting to fall, but held my breath, holding on fast to the proverbial edge, for who needs to fall in love on the first date? My memory of that night tapers off after our dinner at my favorite Indian restaurant, where the food was good, but the conversation was better – that I remember. It was an evening full of so much fun, connection and great conversation – it had been years since I experienced a first date quite so lovely as that.

Clearly something sparked, as we spent the last 2 years continuing to do all of those things together; conversing, wondering, wandering, eating, traveling, loving.

We broke up 2 months ago. My heart is still aching, and the tears are still falling, but with less frequency. I am healing. My heart is healing. I have missed him so very much, and there’s nothing to be done with that. Nowhere to put that. So, why am I recounting this here and now? Because, it began 2 years ago today. I think anniversaries live in our psyches in ways that we don’t fully understand, but the memories ripen and fall on certain days. Today is one of those days.

I am also writing this today because for whatever reason, in the time we were together, he chose to keep our relationship off social media. Our friends and family knew, but with me being an expressive person by nature, having to keep it quiet grew tiresome and hurtful.
And so, I am writing this entry today for me.
For my heart.
We had this beautiful thing.
We had this incredible connection.
For two years he was my best friend and most treasured companion.
Our time together happened. It mattered.
And I honor it.

One of my favorite memories of our time together happened just a couple of months ago over the summer when we were in Europe, around the mid-point in our 16 day trip. We were spending the day in Vatican City, climbing to the top of St. Peter’s, visiting the incredible art museum, and had stopped for lunch at the museum cafe. We were both in good spirits, talking, laughing, eating. Nothing special was happening, we were just both open and relaxed, and enjoying the moment. I wish I could bottle that feeling and drink from it regularly, it was that good. I just remember the looking across the table at him, and before I could catch the words, they fell out. I said, “I am so happy right now.”

And I was happy. Deeply happy.

Now, this is kind of a feat for me. First off, I have a pretty serious predisposition to depression and melancholia. I treat it with medication, meditation, and acupuncture, but still struggle with it regularly it seems. Because of this, moments of true happiness, (or dare I say bliss), are rare and absolutely noteworthy.
Also, I’m not catholic. (In fact, I avoid organized religion at all costs) so why this huge feeling took place in Vatican City is beyond me. But it did.

The love I held for him, combined with the joy of being on this dream vacation together (Athens, Santorini, Rome and Venice!)… sharing so many sights and sounds and tastes caught up with me in that moment. I have rarely been happier than I was right then.

I had no idea that just 6 weeks after that blissful moment we would reach an impasseĀ  and end our relationship. Looking back I see I held my breath for two years, not allowing myself to fully fall in love with him – and when I finally (accidentally) did, I understood why I held it so long.

Still, I have no regrets. I am so glad I was able to spend two years with a beautiful man, who has a beautiful heart and a beautiful mind. I know that in the end I loved him completely, to the best of my ability, and how wonderful that after all I have been through in this life, I can still love so deeply.

My heart thanks you for reading and witnessing.



On Cravings and Choice

Last weekend I went out to dinner to a fabulous new Mexican restaurant near a friend’s house, and all I wanted was machaca tacos. So much so that I could almost taste the spices in my mind. Which was weird, because I’ve been vegetarian for many years and vegan for the last year and a half. Don’t worry – this isn’t about pushing my dietary choices on you, the backstory is important because this craving was really strange! Was my body in need of iron? Why suddenly the intense need for red meat? I labored over my choice. Investigated my desires. Took a deep breath and defiantly thought, “I deserve to have what I want. If I want meat, I’m going to order meat!” When faced with the option by the waiter, however, I couldn’t actually bring myself to order meat. Much as I craved the taste, I don’t actually want to eat meat. Feeling defeated on one level, I ordered the vegan-friendly veggie fajita (which was delicious, btw) and called it a day.

Tonight I felt fed up with the usual restaurants near my studio shoppe, and set out on an adventure looking for new place to eat. Eventually, I stumbled upon a tiny little Mexican joint which was new to me. Something told me to check them out…turns out they had Beyond meat on the menu, which was quite the delightful surprise! I have not had a beyond taco yet, but the burgers are good, so this had to be good! I couldn’t decide between the vegan nachos and the vegan taco, but went with the beyond taco. Wouldn’t you know it, but it tasted exactly like machaca! I think I actually squealed in joy with my first bite. Full disclaimer: I will say that it’s been so long I may not remember what machaca actually tastes like, but this was cooked in very similar spices and my week-long craving was completely satiated!

Walking back to work, I thought about desires, wants and satiation. I really wanted that machaca last weekend. Like, really wanted it – but didn’t indulge because it went against my own preferences. In making the choice not to have it, I also let the desire go. I even completely forgot about it, to tell you the truth – only to have it suddenly come to me in a way that was in complete alignment with my values. (and the taco was only four bucks to boot!)

My point is, we all have things we want… maybe even desperately want. The craving is strong, and sometimes it’s so strong that we make choices which go against the grain of who we are just so we can scratch some itch. But what is the payoff there? Temporary relief, sure, but at what price?

There are things I really desire right now, but for various reasons, am not actually aligned with, and therefore are not part of my life experience. Truth be told, I’ve wasted far too much time lamenting these lacks. Today, though, my silly, delicious, not-machacha taco reminded me of something really valuable. It is vitally important to let go of what is not working, let go of what is not in alignment, let go of who or what is not choosing you – in order to receive what is truly nourishing. It’s almost as if once you let go of a non-productive desire, the subconscious can go about solving that particular riddle, and scratch the itch in a way which is deeply satisfying.

I know what you’re thinking. There is nothing more infuriating than the instruction to “let go”. We don’t know how to let go. We are not well versed in accepting the way things are, and we don’t know how to say goodbye, for that matter. But it is something we truly must learn to do if we are to have what we really want, and have what will be satisfying on multiple levels.

So, with faith and conviction…let go.