Wedding recap part 2

Posted in family, friends, health, life, love, relationships with tags , , , , , on July 16, 2019 by me

Since I’ve been home, I’ve had a chance to talk about this to two people. That purge was pretty good and I don’t totally feel the need to keep talking about it, but I started writing about this and my memory is terrible, so why not?

The interesting thing about talking this through is how much I appreciated my friends’ reactions, the fact that there was a certain aspect of blind loyalty that was really appreciated. There’s always two sides of the story, they only heard mine, but they had my back. Loyalty has been a recurring theme with the whole Marla situation, since years ago when we first broke up. Did I understand my sister wanting to stay friends with her? Sure. That’s a sucky part of breakups and divorces. The friends and families have tough decisions to make. I know my sister was having some rough times and needed friends, so I tried to be supportive, but I asked that she not lie about hanging out with Marla and she did, repeatedly. Then forbidding me to bring a date and letting Marla bring her’s just made the whole thing a little miserable. I’m not harboring feelings for Marla, in fact she seemed to be a little bit of a train wreck and I had that *whew* dodged-a-bullet feeling. And in theory I want her to be happy. I just a) don’t want to see that happiness up close and b) don’t want to be reminded of that period in my life right then. It was brutal and ugly. I grew from it but I don’t need to revisit every day.

It wasn’t just my sister. I lost several friends during that time. They decided to go “Team Marla”. And she’s a much more personable person than I am. People just love her within minutes of meeting her. I’m much more awkward and a cold fish at first. So within a day or two of her arrival it felt like I couldn’t find a corner of the resort where I couldn’t hear her laughter. The loyalty thing has stung over the years since the breakup. I have to remind myself of the new deep and lasting friendships that came out of that and try to let the pain of the hurt and… disloyalty go. It sucks a bit, I can be extremely loyal to my friends, part of the whole people-pleasing thing. Not having it returned hurts.

So that rehearsal dinner pushed my buttons a little. It was bad enough she was there, but then she was circulating as a photographer, taking shots at all the events, called out for special recognition, then her boy friend was up front entertaining the whole room and everyone was raving about how great they both were. I took my exit and told my sister it was my cue to leave as he got his guitar setup. I went outside to the pool to swim, hoping it’d cool me down and let me regroup, but instead there was a super loud, annoying family there swimming. They were friends of my sister (she’d rented out the entire resort) so I didn’t want to confront them and ask them to control their kids. So I went inside to the downstairs hot tub and smaller pool. I stayed there for about an hour, then went to my room to shower but even though it was 11:30 at night, I was still keyed up. So I looked at a map, talked to the people at the front desk and got in my rental car to go to the east coast.

While I was driving my sister started messaging me. Could she come to my room and talk to me? No, I was driving. We went back and forth a couple of times. She didn’t really understand what I was saying and apologize. I kind of got that apology that therapists talk about and that girls hate, the not an apology apology (I’m sorry you feel that way). She did say that she apologized for making me feel bad, but defended her actions in a) inviting my ex-girlfriend and her boyfriend to the wedding and b) not letting me bring someone and c) not warning me, ignoring the fact that I’d told her I was thinking playing at the recital with her in a couple weeks was going to be awkward. And d) tried to justify it, saying that I didn’t have to sit next to Marla, she wasn’t shooting the wedding (ignoring the fact that she’d shot every other group event) and that there should be “plenty of buffer between us, also ignoring the fact that I’d already had to talk to her and her bf, that her boyfriend had just played the dinner and was kind of hard to ignore, as was Marla circulating all the group events, taking photos. She said that she’d think about what we talked about revisit it with me the next day.

I told her not to, if she did we’d end up saying things that couldn’t be taken back. Just ignore it, pretend it didn’t happen, get through the wedding, have an amazing day. She kept trying to talk about it, but I reminded her I was driving and disengaged. I went out to the coast, walked around and checked the little town out, then went back to Palma and walked around the downtown there, getting back to the hotel and into bed around 3:30am. The next morning I found out about Dad falling down.

After Dad and I got back from the beach and the natural bridge we got ready for the wedding. That was a gigantic pain in the ass. It was a black tie event. I left time for me to get ready plus a little bit, nothing thinking I was going to be interrupted repeatedly by my dad and son needing help. My dad wanted me to trim his stitches so they wouldn’t be so apparent to people or in photos. My scissors were a little dull so they tugged on the stitches a bit. It didn’t hurt him, but it was un-nerving to me, watching his wound pull with each tug. My son needed help with his tie, but finally we got out there for photos. Once those were done, it was a little chaos.

The rehearsal wasn’t actually much of a rehearsal. They talked about a lot of stuff, but didn’t actually… rehearse. Who was going to tie the rings around the stuffed dog’s neck for the ring bearer to carry up the aisle? Did the ring bearer know who to give the rings to? Did he know how to take the rings off the dog and what to do with rings and the dog? Who was going to tell the ring bearer and flower girl when to go? These things were really apparent to me, no one else was stepping up, so it was easy to just make it happen. Things went off pretty much without a hitch. I jumped up in the middle of the ceremony to help keep the rings moving through the audience in a timely manner (it WAS 100 degrees and it was black-tie and outside) and read my poem. I choked up a little while reading it though, the memory of my older sister kept popping into my head.

Then it was over. We did the reception. Had dinner, my Dad gave an amazing and highly complementary speech, then we got my Mom and aunt to dance and I took my leave. I didn’t want to keep bumping into Marla and her boyfriend in the tiny room.

I do have to say, it was probably the most beautiful ceremony I’ve ever attended. One of the things I’ve said a lot lately is that if I ever get married again, I’m going to ask the people in attendance to help hold us accountable and to take an active role in the success of the marriage. My sister did that, in a beautiful way, having everyone in attendance symbolize that by touching the rings before they exchanged them.

One funny thing did happen. It was a black-tie affair. That was clearly stated on the invitation. Probably no-one wanted to do it, but we went, so we dressed and behaved appropriately. Except for Marla and her bf. No gown, just a hippy dress. And her boyfriend was just in some flowy beach pants, a button down shirt and sanuck soft fabric shoes. During the reception we were all pretty miserable. It was hot, we were wearing uncomfortable gowns or tuxes, painful shoes, etc. Part way through the reception my kid leans over to me and says “What the fuck? Your sanucks are so fucking uncomfortable that you have to go put your flip flops on?” For those that don’t know, sanucks are really comfortable shoes. They have flip flop soles with fabric tops, they call them sandals, not shoes. So to change from them to flip flops is somewhat ridiculous. He might’ve had a good reason for it, some injury or something that I’m not aware of. But in general? A really goofy move when you were already so casual. Anyways, my son asks that question and I say “That’s my ex-girlfriend’s current boyfriend. It’s not really appropriate for me to comment.” My kid said “Well, that doesn’t apply to me. What a douche.” Which was especially funny, because he generally doesn’t curse around me and he’s usually Team Marla, she was present and important in his life when we were dating.

So I went back to my room, crashed and woke up five hours later to take my parents and aunt to the airport at 5:30. When I got back, I had originally intended to just sleep for a couple hours then either go sightseeing some or enjoy the pool again, but instead I slept til 11:30 and had to be checked out by noon. So we got packed and got on our way. We just had time to get lunch, get the car gassed up and drive by the beach again before we had to get to the airport for our flight back to Paris.

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Just a recap so I don’t forget (pt 1)

Posted in family, life, politics, relationships with tags , , , , , on July 12, 2019 by me

Survived the wedding in Spain and had a fun couple of days in Paris with my son.

Last I wrote, I’d seen Marla in the lobby on the way to breakfast. The wedding week went downhill from there.

I was messaging with a friend while I was over there, and trying to be crudely cute I said something along the lines of it was a clusterfuck and I was the lube. She came back with “You know, you don’t HAVE to be the lube. You can be the dick.” I appreciated that. It definitely reminded me that it was MY choice, no one was forcing me into certain positions or roles. They might be expecting it from me, because of decades of history with one another, but I had the power to change things.

In reality, it didn’t change the situation that much, just some of my outlook on it. I still stayed the lube for much of the week, trying to reduce friction between everyone. We went sailing one day and a lot of people got sick. My Dad was really worried that she’d blame the whole thing on my Mom and not acknowledge that other people were puking over the rails and into buckets as well. And to his credit, he was kind of right. She wasn’t there when Mom came back on board the boat and apologized to everyone for cutting the trip short, and she didn’t hear several people say “No, don’t apologize, it wasn’t just you, I’m really happy to be here in calm waters too!”

Then there was the incident when my aunt came in from Thailand and Mom and Dad wanted to take her out and show her some of the country and my sister threw a little bit of a fit. Things got tense. She’d made plans to do stuff with us the next morning, but wasn’t aware that her maid of honor had told my mom that SHE’D made secret plans for a function. And who cares if we went out and saw stuff that night, we could’ve done it the next morning with her as well, it was a big island. So Mom went and pouted, my aunt went and napped, Dad fumed and I took him downtown and we went exploring and my kid stayed by the pool. So I went back to her and told her why Mom had been adamant about going out that night, that it wasn’t her fault, she wasn’t trying to ruin things, she was going off of what my sister’s best friend had told her to do.

Then the accidents. At least five people that I know of fell down there, including myself. Two needed to have stitches. One probably should’ve gone to the ER, but the hotel insisted on calling a traveling doctor out to the hotel and he said she was fine. The night of the rehearsal dinner was a little more brutal for me personally. My sister said “please, check the seating charts, a lot of thought went into this and I’ll come around and explain to you why I chose to sit you next the people I did”. It was pretty obvious why she put us where she did. We were at the loser end of the table with the other “single guys”. Of course, we were forbidden from bringing dates, but no deep thought went into that one. So while we were sitting there, keeping the drunken single guys from getting too obnoxious Marla was circulating, taking pictures of the attendees. My sister stood up, made her speeches and gave her special gifts to people. Then her fiancé stood up, made his speeches and gave his gifts. Super flowery speech about his brother. His brother made a super flowery speech in return. Then my sister told the crowd how Marla was graciously going to be doing headshots for people the next day while they were all dressed up. Then my sister came around and apologized for not saying anything about my son and I and giving us a chance to say nice things about her. Ha-ha. THEN Marla’s bf got up with his guitar and proceeded to entertain the group. That’s when I made my exit, and as I passed my sister, I told her why I was taking that as my cue to leave. Long, long, run-on paragraph. I’ll get back to the night later, but I was out driving around the Spanish island until 3:30 in the morning. At 7:30 I was woken up by my Mom knocking on my door. My Dad had fallen, was bleeding badly and the doctor was on the way.

He was ok, but he took stitches. He has a huge hematoma lump on his arm that still hasn’t been absorbed back by his body. He pulled the stitches out by himself the other night in the bathroom and most of the bruising has passed. But he was pissed. He’d suggested multiple times to my sister that the hotel do something to warn her guests of drop offs and hazards and they’d done nothing. He wasn’t mad at my sister, he was mad at the hotel. He wanted my sister’s wedding to be free of any horrific tragedy. What didn’t help matters was that we had a family member die of a head injury just a few weeks before the wedding. He wanted to keep it from my sister, but I suggested we call her and let her know. Much better to have her be there when the doctor was there and hear that he was ok than to find out about it from another guest, or worse, not find out about it til wedding time when she saw him with a huge bruise on the side of his head. So I called her room and woke her up. And instead of fussing over my Dad, making sure he was ok, she started scolding him for going into the room where he tripped.

That did NOT help. He got defensive. He isn’t an expert on weddings. How was he supposed to know he wasn’t supposed to go into the room where the reception was going to be held? Was it some un-written rule? If it was really off-limits, why didn’t they put a sign on the door or lock it? How was he getting blamed for the hotel not protecting the guests? (To add insult to literal injury he had to pay for the doctor’s visit, the hotel didn’t pick it up). And that’s what my Dad does. He tosses and turns, finally gets out of bed and wanders around and putters around until other people are awake. So after the doctor came and gave him his stitches I got him out of there. We went to a pharmacy first, and got his prescriptions and then I took him to the east coast of the island, to hunt for a natural bridge that one of the receptionists at the resort told me about the night before when I was looking for a destination. It was gorgeous. We got some great photos, then found a beach not too far away with was topless and also gorgeous. Oogled the beach and the girls a bit, then headed back to the resort.

Weddings and Families

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on June 27, 2019 by me

My family is weird. My older sister used to be a bit insensitive. She had two groups of friends, and when she’d get sick of one, she’d disappear and go hang with the other until someone in that group irritated her and then it’d be back to the first. And both groups knew it and it annoyed them, but they liked her enough to put up with it for over 20 years. They just laughed about it behind her back and rolled their eyes. They all got the silent treatment too, and like with us, never knew why.

My little sister was always bothered by it, but of course doesn’t see it in herself. I suppose I do it as well, and probably aren’t as aware of it as I’d like to think either.

When I broke up with Marla, my little sister was going through some tough times, so I told her I didn’t mind if she stayed friends with her, I just asked that she not lie to me about it. Which she has, repeatedly. And worse, gotten her boyfriend, now fiancé, soon to be husband to lie as well.

I’m in Spain this week. Here for her wedding. Over the last couple of months, I’ve had suspicions that Marla might be here, but no real verification one way or the other. A couple of weeks ago, I sent my sister a video for the guitar program and she responded with “Huh, I didn’t know you and Marla were in the same program” and I responded, telling her yes, and that I really wasn’t looking forward to seeing her at the recital, that that would be awkward (made doubly so because she’s going to be singing a duet with her boyfriend. The only blessing there is that it’s not Dave).

So wedding week arrives and we get ready to fly here. And she created a photo album for people to put their photos of their travels and from the wedding and included Marla. That was my answer. On the flight over, instead of napping, I tossed and turned (as much as you can in a coach seat) thinking about it, and my response. Should I confront my sister about it? Mention that it would’ve been nice to know that she was coming when I was trying to decide whether to come and how long to stay for? What would I say when I saw Marla? Was she bringing her bf? (Did I mention that my son and I were forbidden from bringing any partners?).

Mostly, I decided to just swallow it. Partly because that’s who I am and what I do. Partly because I didn’t think it’d make a difference, and my sister just refuses to acknowledge anything. She knows how bad the break up hurt, she knows how Marla and her mom fucked with my head for years after. And clearly doesn’t think anything of it. So all mentioning it would do is just grow the rift between us. Maybe later, when it’s not “her moment” it’ll come up. Who knows.

I saw Marla this morning though. She was going into the restaurant with her boyfriend as I was coming out from breakfast. I can’t say that it didn’t mean anything, or that there isn’t any feeling. Obviously there’s enough anxiety about the situation to make me sit her and type this nonsense out. But there’s a lot wrapped up in that, that’s probably not Marla, but the stuff around that time. The divorce, the relationship with her, the breakup, the counseling and life/mental changes as a result, etc. There’s “Marla” and then there’s “All the shit good and bad that came as a result of the end of the relationship with Marla”.

But passing her in the lobby, it was basically a non-event. (Thank you God, for letting the head nod and “How are you this morning” just roll out smoothly, with no Cliff Claven type stuttering). She’s just some one I used to know at this point. I recognized her, but I’m sure not the same person I was back then and hopefully she isn’t either. There’s no desire to have that back, and no regret over the life I have now or the people I have in it.

The song “Someone I once knew” by Paul Westerberg popped into my mind after, so I went and listened to it. That lyric is there, but not the rest of the song, where he tells her to sit her ass down. Because I have no urge to do that. I don’t want to catch up or talk or know. I don’t wish her ill, I hope she’s happy and got stuff figured out, but mostly I’m just happy to go back to my bubble.

Guitar

Posted in health, life, music, veteran on June 18, 2019 by me

Since March I’ve been taking guitar lessons. I’ve always wanted to learn how to play and in recent years have noodled around with an electric guitar and Rocksmith (a video game designed to help you learn to play) with limited success. Back in February, Wounded Warrior Project offered 15 weeks of guitar lessons in their newsletter and I signed up. They provided the instrument and the lessons and if I completed ten weeks, I got to keep the acoustic guitar kit.

I’ve really enjoyed the lessons. They paired me up with the most perfect instructor for me. The way he talks and teaches is the way I want to learn.  I’m learning to that I haven’t understood before because of him. And he’s got a graduate degree in music, vs. being someone who’s just picked guitars a lot and so he can answer my nerd questions. Or we can work something out on the piano so I can understand it. He can go way deeper in theory than I can, which is great.

The one problem with these lessons is that next month I’m supposed to play in what they’re calling a “concert” and I’m calling a “recital”. Just like one of those terrible music recitals my parents had to sit through for hours just for the four or five minutes each of us kids would play.

I don’t mind the idea of the recital itself. I’m sure I’ll be nervous and have ferocious stage fright, but I’ve worked through that before and know I’ll survive. I hate the pressure that comes with it. For 14 weeks I’ve been focused on just one song, and will continue to be until next month when the show is over. But this is like a candy store and there are so many other things I want to explore, so many other things I wish I could’ve picked my instructor’s brain about.

When I was a kid my parents enrolled us all in piano lessons and I hated it.  The teacher was a really buttoned up woman, the organist/pianist at her church.  She picked our music and it was always songs we’d never heard before.  Or didn’t care about.  I’m sure there was a method to her madness, but that doesn’t matter, I didn’t enjoy it.  Nor did I enjoy the mandatory 30 minute daily practices.  Mom would set the kitchen timer and we kids would just rotate on and off the piano bench, with her yelling orders for us to practice a part over again if she didn’t like it.  I honestly don’t know what caused them to let us quit, if they just got sick of fighting us or what.

When I was 17, I kind of missed it.  Not the practice, not the fighting, not the old-church-lady-teacher.  But making music.  I was working, a co-worker took lessons and loved her teacher, so I called her teacher up and started taking lessons.  She was completely different.  Her philosophy was that music should be a passion, a labor of love.  If I didn’t want to/couldn’t practice the rest of the week, she was fine if the only time I played was during my lesson just as long as I didn’t blame her for lack of progress related to my lack of practice.  Fair’nuff!  And she let me play what I wanted.  When I told her I loved Danny Boy (this was after Memphis Belle came out, with Harry Connick, Jr’s excellent performance) she dug out a version she had composed and that’s what I spent my time learning to play.  This was fun!

One day I was practicing and Dad asked me what was going on, why was I playing so much lately.  I explained that I’d started taking lessons again.  I was in high school with a part-time job, so this surprised him and he offered to pay.  I refused.  “But why?”  “Because then you’d ruin it for me.”

There’s five of us (I think) taking guitar lessons.  I think there are three guys and 2 women.  We’re a pilot program, the first ones that WWP has paid for to attend through this separate non-profit.  If we succeed and rave about the program, there will probably be options for more Vets to go through this type of thing.  If we hate it or “fail” (no idea how they’ll determine if this is a success or failure), then I guess they’ll end the grant and partnership with the other non-profit.  So there’s that pressure.  I can really see this being beneficial to some guys.  And then the pressure of not wanting to go on stage at this concert and embarrass either the guy who heads the non-profit (and will be playing with us in the concert) or my teacher (who will also be playing).  I know my teacher volunteered a lot of his time and isn’t making anywhere near his full rate to teach me how to play.  And he’s offered to continue teaching us privately at the discounted rate moving forward.

I have to learn how to package some feedback for the group.  I’ve enjoyed the experience.  I’ve learned a ton.  I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunity, for my instructor and for the guy who is running the program.  I can’t wait for the recital, although I’m still on the fence about letting anyone know/inviting anyone.  And yet I also can’t wait for it to be over, to be able to enjoy learning to play what I want, when I want.  I’m not sure whether or not I’m the only person who feels the pressure, and I don’t know whether or not that pressure is helpful or harmful for some of the Vets they’d be trying to serve.

I don’t know what it tells you about me…

Posted in bed, Childhood, health, home, life, meditation, veteran with tags , , , , , on June 17, 2019 by me

… that two of my most vivid/fondest childhood memories are about falling asleep/dozing.

We moved to Savannah, Ga when I was in the second grade. We moved into a brick house that had a sunken living room with a fireplace in one corner and frosted skylights. We also got basic cable TV for the first time in our family history in that house. It hardly ever snowed in Savannah, but we’d still get the early nights and a lot of rain in the winter. During the school year, we’d run home from the bus stop and plant ourselves in front of the TV to watch cartoons or reruns for a bit, then mom would turn the TV to CNN and we’d have to do homework while she was cooking dinner in the kitchen.

I remember one winter day, after I finished homework, I was laying on loveseat. The loveseat was on the wall of the living room closest to the kitchen. I wasn’t feeling too hot, and was too lazy to get up and turn the lights on, so I just laid there as the room got darker and darker, listening to the same news stories repeat over and over, and hearing the hustle and bustle from the kitchen, my mom cooking and talking to my little sister. Even today, I just imagine laying there, my eyelids getting heavier and heavier until eventually I fell asleep. I woke up to the noise of my Dad coming home from work. The dog went nuts welcoming him home, my sister my sister was excited, and he smooched my mom. And I just drifted back to sleep, hearing her tell him I was napping. Even though I wasn’t feeling great, I remember just feeling totally safe and cozy, thinking that that must be what the word “cozy” actually meant before I fell asleep again.

At some point after we moved to Georgia, I had an allergy test done and it came back as being positive for house dust. I don’t remember if I just had bad sinus headaches or what, but my parents definitely used it as an excuse to harp on me about keeping my room clean. My dad could be a somewhat distant parent, but when something like that happened it gave him a chance to leap into action. The neighbors had a room air filter they weren’t using that he borrowed while he researched buying one for me.

That filter was about the size of a plastic dog transportation crate, so Dad put it on the floor of my room next to my bed. I don’t know why, but I got stuck in the small room in that house, so my bed was pushed up against the corner of one wall, then there was the filter next to it and there was just enough room for me to put a pillow next to it, between the filter and the opposite corner. When I did, the pillow was scrunched up against the filter and the wall, and directly underneath the window in the room. Because the pillow was pressed up tight against the filter, when I laid down on it, I could feel the vibration of the filter through the pillow.

I was a nerdy kid, frequently had my nose in a book, and this was a gloomy, rainy day. So I was laying on the floor under the window reading my book, looking up and watching the rain hit the window and run down it, leaving streaks as it did so. And the rhythmic “purr” of the air cleaner just rocked me to sleep. It was like a gravitational black hole. I remember waking up several times and drifting back asleep. In a daze, looking up at the rain on the window until my eyelids got too heavy again. Eventually a baby sitter showed up. She was cute and I had a crush on her, so that was enough to finally rouse me, but that was one of the most content afternoons of my life.

I’ve spent a lot of time and effort trying to recreate those moments over my life, with varying degrees of success. I’ve talked about great naps I’ve had in Iraq, with my cot pressed up against an air vent, the rush of the air coming through the vent vibrating the cot and drowning out all the small talk, coughing and farting of a tent full of 40 other guys. One of the best naps I’ve ever had was on the first day that I met a former girl-friend that I ended up dating for two years. We were sitting in a chow-hall/meeting room waiting for our boss. We pulled two folding chairs up to a window air-conditioner unit and passed out in front of it.

When I travel, I have a white-noise app on my phone. If I can’t force the fan of the air-conditioner to play full time at night, I run the app. When I’m home, I’ve got a little fan that’s in bed next to me, just purring away, blowing air under the blankets and vibrating my pillow. I’m actually eye-balling this “bed air conditioner”, this fan that blows cool or hot air into a special sheet that you sleep under.

I’m not (usually) trying to escape or hide from the real world. I just love that cozy feeling of a good nap.

Frenetic

Posted in dating, friends, health, life, love, relationships with tags , , , , , on April 10, 2019 by me

Before the holidays I met someone in a dating app. We went to brunch together and I thought there was a connection, and I thought she was a little different than other girls, more intense and emotionally driven and felt she wouldn’t do games. So I was vulnerable and pursued her and was up front about my feelings and intentions.

That vulnerability and transparency was attractive to her at first. No one had put it out there that bluntly before, that they were attracted to her and intended to pursue her, so she responded. But after a couple of dates, decided there wasn’t enough zing there and called it.

She did leave the door open for being friends though. I’ve been a little more aware of getting older and being single so I took her up on it. Single peeps gotta stick together, strong friends can help when you’re older and need assistance just living life.

So, as friends, she came over for Thanksgiving. We ate, we watched movies, we hung out. We got together other times over the end of the year and then she got news that she was dealing with a pretty big illness and started to withdraw from peeps. She was tired a lot, didn’t have energy to hang out, etc. But I did the friend thing, checked in regularly, went to her place to just watch movies, let her stay on the couch while I let myself out, etc.

She really liked THAT. No one had done that before either. A lot of friends abandoned her during this time. She felt wonko about it, felt like all she did was talk about the illness, but felt that made her boring, thought she was high maintenance, etc. And she probably was, but that’s what you do when you’re sick, I was ok with it. In my mind, it was kind of karma bank as well, pay in so you can take out later. But that got her confused. Was she interested in me after all? Was I a good partner? She brought it up and I kind of shut it down. I was starting to see someone else, and as we hung out more, some red flags appeared. So I wasn’t really interested. But she said she was confused.

A month or so ago, she kind of ghosted on me. We were supposed to go see a comedian, get her out of the house and laughing. She was also leaving on a vacation to sit on the beach a couple days later. She sent a text that basically said she couldn’t go, there was too much going on and she couldn’t deal with it all. I took that to mean she was stressed getting ready for the trip. Apparently she meant the friendship. Haven’t heard from her since.

This stuck in my craw. It was kind of an ego thing. Screw you, you hurt my feelings when you ended the romantic possibilities, then I decided to try the friendship and you ended that poorly too. That ego – it’ll bite you in the ass.

I’m not some great Casanova. But sometimes, in a situation like this, I just *know* what to say or do to move things in a certain direction. Which is funny, because whenever we hung out, she always had me off-guard, I never knew the “cool” thing to say or do. But there’s a part of me that at a minimum, knows how to get the door open again. And the ego part of me, kind of wants to. Really wants to. I think it’s the male side of me, the hunter, the part that needs a conquest of sorts. I’ve tracked the prey and can’t handle letting it escape. A good friend of mine that I was explaining the situation to thinks it’s something else. Either a victim response, wanting to have control. Or that I’m a narcissist or that I’ve got co-dependency issues. “She has control of your (lack of) interactions. You want to take that from her. Feel like you aren’t controlled.”

So I spent an entire weekend, resisting the urge to reach out. And it still pops up from time to time. The other day at work, a co-worker mentioned that the guy she went on a date with does improv comedy. It’s a small community, I’m pretty sure he knows her. It’d be easy to even back-channel a communication through that. But that’s fairly self-destructive behavior. Why? To what end? To either re-establish a friendship that I don’t really need/want/doesn’t seem healthy to me or to push it further, sleep with her, get my conquest and…. what? The red flags are there. I’m happily pursuing someone else, someone much more present and available and healthy (mentally and emotionally, this isn’t in terms of the physical illness).

We’ve got a new guy at work and he’s a former comedian. And he’s annoying as hell. Always performing, also trying a little too hard. I’m glad he came, every time he annoys me it’s been a good reminder of what a friendship with her would be like.

Time

Posted in family, friends, health, home, life, love, relationships with tags , , , , , , on March 4, 2019 by me

Years ago, when I was getting divorced, a friend introduced me to a woman he used to work with. I was looking for a new job and she was starting over as a recruiter/staffing sales person.

I don’t really know how she found out about the divorce. I think we were at a happy hour and another friend who was closer, on a personal level vs. just a work friend, mentioned it and some of the details behind it. Some time later, a couple of weeks or a month, she asked if we could meet for lunch. While at lunch, she started talking to me about the divorce. She knew how bad things were between my ex and I, and for my son, and she just wanted to talk to me about the importance of going through with it and offering her emotional support. She wanted to make sure I understood how vital it was to not being scared and chickening out. How much I needed it, how much my son needed it, how much he needed to see a healthy relationship.

She actually told me about her divorce, how for a period of time she had to live out of her car, but how worth it it was to get out of such a terrible situation. And told me that things would work out, to have faith through the tough times.

During the divorce, not many people knew what was going on. As emotionally flat as I get accused of being now, I played things a lot closer to the vest then. I had someone compliment me later for the fact that they had no idea that I was going through a divorce, that I didn’t bring my emotions to work with me.

Years have gone by, and we’ve stayed in touch. That day at lunch she shifted from being an acquaintance to a true friend. Tonight I had her and a mutual friend over to my new place for drinks.

She just texted me a few moments ago.

“Love your new place and the adventure you’re on! I see your glow and happiness. Thanks for hosting us. Excited to see more fun nights at your place!’