- Silvia & Othman -

Dear Silvia, 

If you're reading this, I'm sorry for everything that has happened. I sense, perhaps that you feel lost, helpless and lacking purpose. You've lost sight of what your purpose is and I can imagine how scary that might feel. You've probably realized that you've achieved nothing (or very little) in life and being in a relationship with me, you constantly felt compared to someone who achieved so much in so little time. And you know the secret to my success: I work hard and my struggles define me and have only made me stronger. Our own struggles, culminating in the legal disaster, have made me even more stronger and I feel almost fearless now. I still have a few more fears, but I'm making progress and know that in a few years, my courage and boldness will take me even further. You were a sacrifice brought to me by the universe to make me even better and take me closer to my goals. If it hadn't been for you and the lessons I learned from your abuse, I would not be where I am today and the strong person I am today.  

I write this today feeling enormous gratitude (for you as well!), having finally achieved formidable success with my new company to help change the world and confounding a foundation with projects across the world, happiness in my life and finally getting in touch with the adventure side of me-- becoming a father, climbing mountains, boating down the Amazon and riding horses across Eurasian planes. Sometimes I wish you could see what my life has become and see how grateful I am that you were right--we weren't meant to be. I was depressed in our relationship because I realized I was playing a role that I was not meant to play and I didn't need someone to take care of me but someone to challenge me.  

Unsolicited advice: You are a fantastic human, but you have no leadership charisma, a burning passion to change the world or generosity of heart. Without these (which are all tied together), you will still stay the same: a woman who is moderately good at skiing, is probably the only person to have been placed on a PIP at all her jobs, joined a cult in Santa Fe, and contributed nothing to the world. You are by no means a failure, but I sense you have bigger aspirations for yourself. Your strengths are your kindness and ability to stay calm in difficult situations. Those are both attributes I admire in you greatly and I think you should consider channeling in leadership positions.  

Ultimately though, you don't have to be the next CEO to impress anyone. Maybe it's okay that you're just going to be a normal woman who will work a 9-5 job, have kids, and be a great mom. Just being your normal (amazing) self has the capacity to change and inspire others. The world is a better place with you in it Silvia...truly. If there is the little Silvia out there looking for connection and validation, there is always a way to reach her. I've left you keys to each of the events below as a reminder of the beautiful parts you brought to my life. 

I won't be able to help you anymore Silvia, but I've left keys behind as a reminder of the wonderful person that you are.... your caring heart, your creativity, your passion for adventure. I hope you find these keys and remind yourself why it's so special just being YOU and all the value you bring to the world and the people around you. 

I have (and will) never judge you and have loved and supported all parts of you--including the hurt parts that make good people do silly things to people they love and themselves. I hope you can trust me now so I can deliver all this message and more (like the diagram below). 



p.s. - You'll find a surprise in the last key as I know how important Ten Thousand Waves was to us. I'm hoping you will be able to reclaim it as your own special place for your future partner and you and your friends who have always supported you. 

After I ended our relationship on the 28th and the 29th, and you mutually agreed in early April, you agreed to make reparations for the cheating, violence, and abuse. You never did, reneging on your promise (and even using it in a twisted, sexually perverse way in court) and instead retaliated against me on the basis that I did not support you after you were fired from both of your jobs, failed to produce anything from your accelerator and failed a relationship with a married man whose wife had just had an abortion. There was so little I could do to support you at this point. You blamed this on me, but I know that deep down,  you know that this was your fault and a result from you being so lost.  

This hurt me and I didn't realize initially that my healing was independent of your own journey. I'm sorry that I thought the legal system could make this right too. After returning from Africa, I realized that I had so much anger that I had to sit with and work on forgiving and being gentle with myself to become gentle with others again. 

As soon as I came to terms with this, the universe showed me so much love, and I've now received more than I could have expected. I've posted a few reminders here of the dynamic we faced while we were in a relationship and your actions. Knowing you, you've probably convinced yourself by now that you were a victim. I know that I am not a victim and that I am responsible for everything I put myself in and grateful for you showing me what I'm worth and what I deserve. 

When I broke up with you at the end of March (you might have forgotten this), you took ownership of your actions 

For all the times you hit me, and the things you called me including the time you told me I was not masculine enough for you. And the many times you lied and cheated on me.

Dear Silvia, 

I made this website for you because I want you to have something you can always turn to wherever you are in the world and know that someone (me...) loves you and will always love you. You will always be in my heart and thoughts, regardless of whether we are together or not. 

I know how much we both like little adventures and exploring and have also left little (and permanent) SoSo clues across San Francisco. You have my promise that I will keep updating this website in perpetuity. 


p.s. - Don't forget to check out the living wall (upper left) where others who love you have left messages 

How it happened: 

I met Silvia on a dating app named bumble. These were the first pictures I saw of Silvia. I thought she was stunningly beautiful and I saved her pics on my phone and showed all my friends. My favorite picture was the one on the right with Silvia in a traditional Romanian shirt. 

I didn't save Silvia's message to me, but I remember it began as the following: 

"I guess it's tabularasa with you." 

I didn't know the word, so I had to google it and I knew in that moment that this girl was much smarter than I was. 

What happened next: 

After we started chatting, I knew that I had met someone extraordinary. She didn't respond quickly to my (over-enthusiastic) texts but I wanted to impress her so I asked her for recommendations for Sweden (she now responds immediately!). 

Of course, Silvia sent me a list of the most spectacular restaurants and recommendations for a city balloon ride (approximate cost: 5k-10k dollars). 

Luckily, I was with my friend Gilbert Pilgram who was willing to help me win this girl's heart. We didn't succeed in the balloon ride (very long story involving getting stuck in a parking lot) but made it to the rest of her recommendations (I later found out that she had not been to many of those restaurants).  

I started drafting a text message to Silvia the moment we took off from Stockholm and kept changing it. As we (literally) landed in San Francisco, I made a little mental prayer and pressed send. 

Our First Date:

I wanted to impress Silvia but had not been on many dates before so I proposed a date at SF Jazz. Silvia politely suggested something better that might be more conducive to conversation and found a place called Revolution Cafe.  

I was late to the date and rushed in and remember seeing Silvia turn around in an all black shawl. She just took my breathe away and that memory is forever imprinted in my brain. 

Revolution only took cash, so I awkwardly spent another 10 minutes trying to withdraw cash and wait for two glasses of wine.

Silvia was still accommodating and patient and I remember she had just come from work and was preparing for a big presentation the next day. 

We spent four hours at Revolution Cafe talking. 

The text message on the right was my follow-up message after our first date at Revolution Cafe. 

For Silvia: If you head to Revolution Cafe, you'll find the SoSo clue near the Calas. 

Our first kiss:

I took Silvia to go see a modern dance production and we both really loved it. I wore one of me best shirts and shoes and really wanted to impress her. As we walked around after, I stopped and decided that I had to kiss Silvia. It was passionate, long and connective.  

At the time, the building was a decrepit warehouse. It has now been converted into an office building for startups. 

For Silvia: Look for two hearts on two different corners about to unknowingly collide in love

When I asked her to be my girlfriend

I took Silvia on July 27, 2016 to Tank Hill and gave her a little egg with a paper heart inside it. I asked her to be my girlfriend and she said yes!

As we were driving to dinner down the hill, we saw a burning satellite in the sky and I was initially afraid that it was a meteor and a bad omen! 

A New Chapter 

After a few years, Silvia and Othman realized that their love for each other changed. They wanted to continue supporting each other but didn't think living together and being partners was the best way to do that. 

They decided to try being friends because Silvia realized that was the best way she could support Othman. It was tough for both of them at first, but then they realized that they might be happier. They will always be friends and Othman thinks about Silvia every day with gratitude for all the light she brought to his life. 

For Silvia: For traces of SoSo, find balance in the middle and center yourself and search for the following by retracing your past steps: 

Has a blade of jagged cut.

Keeps the quickest hand out shut.

Goes in darkness. Wears a ring. One is quiet. Many sing? 

A few of My favorite moments 

Our Third Date 

Our Anniversary Date

Our "make it official" date

Our Architecture Date 

A few of My favorite trips with Silvia 

Los Angeles

Sea Ranch

Oregon Coast

New York

There are many things that I love about Silvia. But here are a few of my favorite things: 

The SOSO Best Pictures Repository