My time travel project seems to be moving in the wrong direction.
I’m going back alright!
But instead of feeling like the 20th century me, a 25 year old Lauren who is figuring out life and enjoying a carefree relationship with her lover Bear;
I’m sucked into a rerun of 2015-2016, the time I still identified my lover as “Mr.Big”, based on the character in Sex and the City.
And if he was Mr.Big, I was of course Carrie Bradshaw, the in-love writer, who cannot bear that Big is behaving entirely uncommittable.
Every time she thinks she is entitled to a sign, a gesture, a promise, she ends up being deeply hurt by his ability to deflect them.
My lover and me met late 2014, and I started writing about him approximately March 2015.
I removed those stories from my website, but they’re bundled up in my book “Big” which you can find among the others, in my bookstore.
When in 2019 I started my first diary I wrote as a 25 year younger version of me, I rewrote our storyline and renamed him “Bear”.
A name that immediately clicked.
That I was able to transfer our relationship to the 90s, was a major reason why I knew this Time travel project would be a success. It was one of the main pillars.
The other pillar was my work, where young Lauren needs to figure out how to become a writer, when she can hardly manage finishing her freelance obligations.
A question I still ponder about in 2023.
There are developments in that area, maybe I will tell about them in a future Time travel journal, but just like Carrie, I prefer talking about my love life.
I find career irrelevant, compared to the love life that is supposed to inspire my writing.
To be a writer means to live in a way that there are stories to tell, has become my personal rule of life.
So maybe the jealousy I am about to share with you, is really not so much about feeling jealous in my love life, but about realizing that my ability to write the interesting things, the things I want to write, the things Lauren 25 years younger wants to write about as well, is hinging on one man:
Or 25 years back, Bear.
If he would move on to greener pastures, and it’s one where monogamy rules and he shuts the gate behind him, I am left without the man who has become my creative lifeline.
And the past few weeks, I have been able to feel that…. the risk is almost tangible, and the danger almost palpable.
Like Carrie, I long for a sign, a commitment. I long for him telling me that there will always be room for me, his little Carrie, in his life.
That he will not leave me without love, without sex, without rendez-vous and stories to tell.
But just like Mr. Big. he doesn’t, and I am left feeling as desperate as Carrie but also with an overwhelming realization:
How did it come this far?
How come, that after eight years, my entire creative core has become synonymous with one man?
When the years prior to that I nourished entire calendars with all the dates with all the different men. They were not conquests, far from! There was nothing to conquer.
But I cherished how I, an introvert whose most intimate relationship is with her keyboard, had gone out and had made life fun. How we had created good events, good memories, and yes, sometimes sex.
The calendars were a way of hanging on to a lifestyle I wanted for myself.
A lifestyle I did not invest in since 2015.
When I did meet new men, as I had all those years through various internet platforms, it was never the way it was before I saw Big.
It was so clear that my heart, and further south, were his.
The dates felt not-right, and I know I made the right decision to stop searching. To stop creating a “calendar worthy” dating life.
But it means that every time Mr.Big drops out of communication, or if I can feel any sort of change in the way we communicate, I am paralyzed with fear.
“Oh God, what if he leaves me!”
The most stupid thing about the whole situation, is that I want him to see other women.
And I also want him to drop out of communication, when he is occupied by other things including other women.
My worst nightmare would be that he would pledge his undying faith to me, build his entire world around me, and that our love would go from a waterfall of passion to a slowly dying pond where nothing can live.
It’s way better to have him creating waterfalls en enjoying green pastures, with other women – in fact, him doing this is why OUR waterfalls have not fallen flat! It’s certainly not because I have spent eight years behind my desk, I can tell you that! – than to have him standing still, and risk our passion dying.
This is what I have been thinking about.
Instead of dropping into full 90s mode, I worry about the very real 21st century reality that my dating life with new men, has become non-existent.
All my male friends have been my friends for years.
I absolutely love going out with them, but it is not the internet dating game I so enjoyed before Mr.Big. A game I stepped away from, and that was the right decision.
But it does sting, that Mr.Big is very capable of doing that. And even worse;
It stings that if he wouldn’t, we also would not have what we have had for eight years.
My creative lifeline is not just somewhat disturbingly tied to my relationship with Mr.Big;
It is also tied to him making waterfalls and visiting unknown pastures without me.
I depend on him bringing sexual energy, the energy of untold sexual adventures. I see the invisible crown of someone who has made his relationships, including the sexual ones, his priority.
At best we have a co-dependent relationship, where he depends on me crafting stories, and embellishing his qualities and highlighting the meaning of what comes so natural to him.
In the light of him being so good at something that I have given up on, because it was just causing so much stress, and nothing compared to him;
My biggest hope is that I am giving something back, he craves as much as I crave him.
And my biggest fear, is that I don’t.
An unexamined life is not worth living
since 2018 my official blog is: https://laurenharteveld.com/
This is also where I write my Lauren 1998 diaries.
Plus letters to my coach Sara.
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A quick review 2019-2023 | time travel journal #1
“If I was now living 25 years ago, how would I live?”
In 2019 I started my Time Travel project, where I wrote fictional diary entries from 25 years ago.
I write these diaries on what has been my main website since 2018.
You can find them under headers such as “diary 1998″.
The diary entries are, not entirely unintentional, pretty difficult to find on my site.
But you can try the following pages:
And the categories:
Starting at 2019 going on 1994;
The posts were inspired by real life, real time events, but I never “got” into that feeling of actually living 25 years ago.
My time travel project never reached the level and intensity I had intended. It stayed a literary construct, nothing more.
It staying at the surface had to do with the worldwide events of early 2020, when I was seven to eight months into my retro diary series, and toying with the idea of taking it up a notch and turn back time. But before I could decide, we all became dependent on 21st century technology to stay in touch.
Overnight, it became impossible to revive an analogue past, in particular because the social dynamics around real-life interaction affected my mental health.
I know I’m cutting corners here, but to this day I don’t understand why we, citizens, turned on each other and how the responsibility towards vulnerable people was made into a key argument.
Fast forward 2023, and those vulnerable people are still vulnerable, yet those same social dynamics have now entirely returned to normal.
There would not be a lasting protection, and this could be predicted.
You have to wonder who was the biggest villain: The one who openly defended their controversial choice back in the day, or the one who pretended to be with the good and responsible people, until they could get on with their normal life without having to care.
By now you have to explain yourself if you still wear a mask.
The only consistent factor seems to be that the numbers of a majority decide who is right.
It’s comparable with a situation where for example security at a concert would be very tight, and we all tell each other it’s such a good thing that all those weapons are not allowed on the premises, and people making an incredible big deal about it with families turning on each other, people losing friends and everything. And then one year those same people who enforced the tight security, don’t care anymore and no one talks about it.
I have no idea if these paragraphs are enough of a conclusion or attempt of trying to understand why I found those years so stressful, but for now that is all I can say about it.
I do know that my main blog contains several series trying to get my sexuality back as well as my retro-project back;
Both areas of my life were interchangeable to me.
The Lauren who was 25 years younger was living in a carefree analog world, with her lover Bear who was the same age as she was.
But no matter how many “Behind the scenes” (BTS) posts I wrote to write about the real-time universe and how to create space for Lauren 1995/1996/1997 to have a life of some sort;
No matter how many diaries I wrote about my personal isolation and frustration during those years, real life struggles, and regardless of how many quests I took to recover who I was sexually;
It didn’t work.
Everything stayed as dry and rooted in the now, as it ever was.
So now it is 2023 and the social dynamics have shifted. The situation is comparable to late 2019, and I can, and should, dive into the universe of the 20th century.
I am finally going to give Lauren 1998, the life she deserves.