Janie drives like a New Yorker which, coming from me, could be a compliment. It’s possible that her pre-yoga 6am excuse holds up but we’d have to follow her for a few days to know for sure. Just be warned that she likes to back into parking spots and be ready to brake or swerve out of her way. In our year or two of friendship she has been very easy to talk to, generous and brutally honest.
Tell me about the last time you had your heart broken.
I would say truly, truly broken was in 1993. I haven’t dated anyone since then. I met him in ‘91 and we dated on and off for a couple of years. Then I moved to France and I saw him a few other times. He totally kept me off my balance for like 2 ½ years. It was so short and so furious. He just had a knack for sweeping me off my feet, and then leaving and then sweeping me off my feet again. I wanted him to stay still. I finally I said, “I can’t deal with this anymore.” But if he walked around the corner today, I’d just melt.
Where is he now?
I don’t know. I don’t want to know.
Why you haven’t dated in so long?
I don’t know why that it was so hard for me to let go of him, but it took me a long time to do that. And then to want to do that again? (shrugs.) It’s not that he was so extra-special but we had chemistry. And I’ve seen him once in the last 10 years and it was just, “Hello, how ya doin’.”And a week after that I was wondering why he hasn’t contacted me yet. I was totally losing my mind again. So I think keeping distance from him for the rest of my life is a good idea.
Have you been celibate for a long time?
Well, 17 years. Since 1997.
Wow. No sex since ‘97?
Well, I service myself. No partners since ‘97. I’ve just in the past couple of years opened myself up to dating people. But I don’t meet people. I live by myself, I work by myself. I go to yoga but I just don’t meet people. And I don’t want to internet date.
I’ve met a couple of people in the last couple of years who turned my head. And somebody asked me out, it was on my 50th birthday, and he had to get so drunk just to ask me. I mean, like falling-down drunk. Why would I be with somebody who had to drink themselves into a stupor to say they want to be with me? I’m not that scary.
But yeah, no partners since ’97. He was the last one. I didn’t handle it well. (laughs.)
So he completely changed the course of your life.
He’s the reason I moved to France. He’s French but he lived here. And it piqued my interest so I went there and that was four years of my life. That was life-changing. I never knew anything about France or French culture before I went there, but I just fell in love with it. It’s so quaint and more subdued that the rat race in America. They’re content with their lives.
I like being alone. I like my space and I think it would be hard for me to have somebody in my space. This person I knew last year, he taught me to appreciate little things that you can do together like going shopping or watching tv. These are things I’ve never really done with somebody. But I went grocery shopping with this guy and it was very intimate. And it was fun. He started talking about his dad. Something had brought up some memories for him. So it was a different kind of intimacy for me, one that I had never known before.
Some people will go out for a glass of wine and meet someone and say, “I put it out to the universe and I received!” Well, that doesn’t always happen.
A far more boring question, how long have you been doing acupuncture?
I started studying acupuncture and practicing yoga almost simultaneously. I started school in 2004 and took state boards in 2009. I have a master’s in Environmental Health (but I never used it) and a bachelor’s in Biology. I was working in computer graphics, a totally random job that I planned on having for a couple of months but it lasted 11 ½ years. The job was soul-sucking. There was no joy or hope or reason to live.
I love that acupuncture and energy work is subtle. It’s so powerful. I’ve had a couple of people I’ve treated that like a very strong touch. One woman said she wanted to feel like she was nailed to the table. You don’t feel like that with me. I’m more light. But most people are missing something and they need tonification and that’s where I come in.
What do you think about talking during a treatment? Does it help people?
I will talk during a treatment because I learn a lot more conversationally than I can learn by the questionnaire people fill out. But healing occurs when you get to that quiet, still place. So after we talk a little bit I’ll say, “OK now this part’s quiet.” People enjoy that part, to shut off their head.
How do you deal with there being an acupuncture clinic on every corner in this town?
Hopefully I’ll have good longevity with acupuncture. I do love it, I really love it. But I’m 53 and I have no retirement fund. So I’ll have to keep working until I die.