Life is full of milestones and markers. Events which delineate and define who we are. They help break our lives into manageable chucks. Easy to wrap your head around and reference in conversation. "While I worked at US Interactive" or "While I was dating Jen" or "When I was living in Boston..", that sort of thing. These periods overlap, of course, you may have started and end dating Jen while you lived in Boston, but you get the idea.

These periods are not what I want to talk about tonight. I want to talk about alternate reality tangents that happen along the way. You start dating this girl Jen and then 9 months later it ends and you realize that not only have you completely forgotten about the rest of your life, but that for those 9 months, you became someone a whole different person. And it took the breakup to bring you back to your correct past/future timeline. The funny thing about these tangents is that you almost never know when you're in them.. you only really notice when they're over, when you snap back to reality.

The only time that this is not true is when the tangent has a predefined ending. This can happen when you travel on long trips, in a pregnancy, or terminal illness. These kinds of tangents are the ones where you not only live a life that's foreign to you, but they also define your normal life by providing perspective. An objective look at where you've been where you are and where you're going. And in this, even painful experiences can be beneficial.

I'm going through a period like this myself right now. And while it's emotionally and physically draining, stressful, as well as indescribably sad; I trust that once it's over, it'll give me some insight into how I should spend the rest of my days. Phoenix reborn, one life ends and another gets a new lease. I just hope the terms are good.