Text from a friend about a man who’d wronged her: “Motherfucker ALWAYS manages to pop back into my life somehow JUST when I’ve let my guard down. Seriously, it’s almost impressive. He’s like the herpes of people.”
So, Friday night I had a first date — waffles! — with an OkCupid guy. After waffles, we walked around New Hope, and he seems nice and likes standup comedy. I didn’t feel a huge spark, but he’s cute, and…like…he’s fine. He’s a dude. *shrug*
He walked me to my car and we agreed to a second date later this week. Then for the goodbye, I thought he was just aiming for a hug, so I leaned my face toward his shoulder, but then he kissed my cheek while I did that, so I thought, “Crap, did I just dodge a kiss on my mouth? I didn’t mean to do that. I like kissing.”
So because I’m a dipshit, I texted him at a light on my way home and said, “Don’t know if I inadvertently dodged the kiss or if you’re just a gentleman, but next time…”
And his response was, “First and foremost a gentleman.”
You guys? You know how I know he’s too nice for me? Because after he said that, my brain thought, “Aw, that’s sweet,” and then my ladyparts were all, “We would fuck him senseless right this minute.”
Even just from a hug, I keep smelling him faintly on me. GOD, I love that.
I don’t think I’ve ever NOT kissed a guy on a first date. So before Friday, I’d officially gotten my ass spanked in a Ford Focus on a first date more times than I’ve not kissed someone. (That is to say, once. And also, shut up.)
But again, I texted my friends after the date and said, “I’ll go out with him one more time, but from his texts and this first encounter… I don’t know, I don’t think he’s One of Us.”
I know I don’t want a relationship just yet, but it’s not terribly promising if I don’t think we even click well enough to be friends. But we’ll try one more time. At a minimum, I must kiss.
Sometimes I’m recapping therapy in my private journal and I find myself amusing, so I’m posting this excerpt:
“The therapist asked what I’d want from my next relationship, and I told her, ‘I don’t think I’m ready to be a Girlfriend. That would have to be an incredibly slow progression, like I almost feel bad for the guy and the baby steps he’d have to take to get me there. I should have a sign that says, ‘Commitment issues may be closer than they appear. (You’ll get laid, though, don’t worry.)’
“I mentioned the guy I’d been ‘dating’ who brought pancakes to my door uninvited and unannounced the morning after we’d, um…’dated.’ He texted me from outside my door to announce his presence. So I took the pancakes — I’m crazy, not stupid — but didn’t let him in because I was SO caught off-guard by him being there. It got a little Sheldon, like: “You’re in my house. People can’t be in my house,” even though he’d just been there IN MY BED the night before.
“So I guess I’ll let you fuck me but pancakes are too intimate?
“So I told the therapist I want, ‘Someone who’ll have sex with me, but only with me (because diseases, and what if the other women are better in bed than I am?). And they snuggle me for 5-10 minutes after sex and then get the hell out. And they’re not my boyfriend, but we go on dates, and also, they should be at least smart enough to know, like, how Velcro works.'”
“I do not find this at ALL unfair or unreasonable. (Except the Velcro. Come the hell on.)”
I just got called “cold” and had Sad Singleton noises made at me when I mentioned to coworkers that I consider Thanksgiving weekend a short vacation, not family time, and that I hoped my family didn’t host dinner, because I’m looking forward to relaxing alone.
“Jeez, some people LIKE spending time with their families.” Hey, good for them. I am not one of them. Sorry, is my childhood trauma bothersome to you?
For me, Christmas is the family holiday. I will happily (well…) attend. But a pregame four short weeks BEFORE Christmas? Having my parents insist on family “closeness” now that they’re older, not realizing they were my age 25 years ago while they were inadvertently teaching me NOT to value family? Sorry it’s not my top priority as an adult.
(I know I don’t have to attend either holiday, but skipping both is more of an emotional hassle than it’s worth. Plus, ham.)
Thanksgiving weekend is for me to sleep, watch movies, and cook something delicious, not to drive 2 hours to make shitty small talk or silently ponder which mood medications my father should be on.
I can be thankful and reflective by myself. It’s better than being asked if my ex is seeing anyone, hearing how much my family misses him, and explaining to obscure relatives looking at me quizzically that I “recently” ended a long relationship. Oh, and don’t forget what a good mother I would’ve been, and how maybe I’ll change my mind — that is not at all like being punched in the uterus. (Also, c’mon, my eggs aren’t exactly fresh from the farm. They’re, like, Walmart eggs at this point.)
Besides, I promised a friend who’ll be spending Thanksgiving with HER family that I’d be her on-call getaway car if she needs an extraction (SEAL Team Smug!). So I’m not the only one not singing “Kumbaya” for family time.
BTW, yes, if you know me, “cold” is exactly the right word. I am a complete, dead-inside asshole, and people I love mean nothing to me. You nailed it.
I haven’t been buying things unless I absolutely had to, because I was going to be moving, so the less stuff I had to pack, the better.
Except I ran out of alcohol.
This would be fine ordinarily, but I’m down to the last bits of packing, which means I have to confront the Boyfriend Box — a bunch of relationship remnants I’ve had tucked away, out of sight and mind in the closet, for more than 2 years. Like everything else in the apartment, I’m going to go through it and see what needs to be kept/tossed/donated.
So I picked up a six-pack of Dogfish Head Namaste beer. For, um, inner peace. Yes.
Bonus: I won’t have to pack the beer if I drink it all. But worst case, I move a few bottles to the new place.
Namaste, a quiet night at home, and all of Fiona Apple’s albums on shuffle.
Let’s dance, feelings. I ain’t scared.
I’ve spent the past few months paring down my possessions, making sure I know, love, or use everything I have. (“All the right junk in all the right places.”)
I don’t care about a lot of THINGS anymore. I’m not sure if that’s age, or moving so frequently, or seeing people drift into and out of my life. Maybe all those aspects just came together, but it’s been a lot easier to stop holding on to stuff. (Plus, some stuff just has bad juju on it.)
When it comes to ex-stuff, I understand it’s time (likely long past) to at least START dealing with it. I’m not talking about those random interlopers I tried dating; that stuff is long gone. But the Big Ex is another story. There’s a box of stuff I’m not ready to go through yet, and I probably won’t even try until I’m done with everything else.
But obviously when you spend that much time with someone, it can’t all be contained in one box and buried in the back of a closet, so I keep finding remnants of the relationship among other things. It’s sort of insignificant stuff like CDs, t-shirts from vacations “we” took. And I know I CAN let these things go. I’ll never use them, so they’re getting thrown out or donated. Someone else can enjoy them, or throwing things out is healthier than being reminded of him every time I pick up a “Boston”-emblazoned pen he brought me from a work trip.
But goddamn, it’s still daunting. Happily, there is wine, and clearly that needs to be decluttered as well. So cheers, y’all.
Third time’s a charm, I guess.
Internal debate this week:
Heart: “We should send the ex a Valentine’s card.”
Brain: “Are you sure that’s a good idea?”
Heart: “Why not? We’re friends. I’ve sent one the past 2 years even though we were broken up.”
Brain: “Yeah, about that…”
Heart: “I want him to have a good day. A card will make him smile and let him know I’m thinking of him.”
Brain: “OK, then. Are we sending a card to any other friends just because we care?”
Heart: “…We are not.”
Brain: “Do you really think he’s ever NOT aware that you think about him?”
Brain: “Well, then…”
Heart: “We probably shouldn’t. It’s probably one of the 347 unhealthy habits we’re trying to get past.”
Brain: “Right. Step away from the Hallmark.”
P.S. I’d like to credit The Awkward Yeti for the “Heart vs. Brain” construct. If you don’t know the comic, you should.
I’ve been meaning to get this out for a while, so here goes…
I’d really enjoy some indication that, at some point, I will stop genuinely wondering what I’m even doing trying to live my life apart from my ex.
I know I’ll LIVE; it’s not that dramatic. But some days it just doesn’t make sense. My brain will just stop and think, “Wait, I did WHAT? Well, that’s just ridiculous. Go home. Go home right now.”
It’s been 2 years. Can that stop? I’d really like to stop feeling like he’s just on a trip or working odd hours, or like I’m just in some alternate universe where I can sleep with other people if I want to.
At least there are also days I’m able to see the logic and not just the emotion, when the prospect of “someone else” doesn’t seem completely absurd. I have zero interest, since I’m emotionally fucked six ways to Sunday, but maybe eventually. And it’s not like he’s not in my life. He’s just not in my home…which makes it hard to even say “home” and have that mean anything.
So apparently being separated from your “spouse” for over a year does not mean you won’t worry just a little that they’re dead in a ditch when they don’t answer your text for more than 12 hours.
Ahem. OK, NOW y’all can call me unhealthy and codependent.
In my defense, I’d worry about close friends, too, but there’d be less “dead” in my concern. I have not yet followed up or called, so I’m still semi-rational. Tomorrow, though? If you hear reports of massive apeshit coming out of the East Coast? That’s me, sorry.
P.S. I’m also reasonably sure that if anything HAD happened, his family would call me. So that’s tamping down the Crazy.