Ok, I’m confused. In that it’s taken me over a week to write this entry shows you how confused I am about all of this. So… it’s been a very long road but I was actually getting pretty comfortable with the whole thing about being best-friends with my former-love and having no other expectations beyond that. I mean, when we rounded the corner from September to November it was pretty clear to me that the pressures of her ongoing divorce and the upcoming holidays were such that she was operating on “survival mode,” staying busy with work and trying to manage the difficult transition her youngest son was having with the impending departure of dad and mom living together. Translation: whereas some might deal with said difficulty by losing themselves in a relationship (read: rebound) she was very much staying away from that scenario and basically being my “buddy on the phone” averaging about three or four calls a week. During Thanksgiving things got to the point where I needed some kind of confirmation of our relationship status, following which there were larger drops in communication. And, of course, I didn’t see her for either Thanksgiving or Christmas. Thus, while there were hints that she had been looking for a gift for me for Christmas, for the second year in a row I got nothing from her. All of which, continued to push me toward the conclusion that we’re just friends, and that she’s still in “emotionally unavailable” mode.
So I mentioned to her, in passing, that I was going to go to my favorite local pub, Taco Beach, for New Years Eve. Next thing I know she wants to know what time I’m planning on going thus I have an unforeseen date for the evening. Hell, I hated being alone for Thanksgiving and Christmas, so I wasn’t going to reject her gesture and make it a “three-peat” of being alone. In the back of my mind I knew that any little circumstance on her home-front could belay this plan, so the Taco Beach scenario was a good one for me in that even if she couldn’t make it, I would still end up spending the evening with my friends at the bar (translation: I wouldn’t be alone). Well, surprise, surprise, she showed and even more surprising sparks flew between us and a lot of pent up affection got “exercised.” Happy New Years, indeed! Okay, so now that I think about it, maybe that was my Christmas gift.
So neither one of us wanted to ruin the moment by asking what all of this meant (or means). And so we drifted into the next week. She was tired on Monday, it was an overcast, rainy day and I was still on vacation. I wanted to invite her to play hooky from work and come over to spend more time with me. But I hesitated. Then when I did say something, she countered with an offer to meet some place else closer to her work. I differed. The down-grade from napping with her on a rainy day in my apartment to having a few beers with her at some bar was too much to navigate (she’d hinted at the end of our New Year’s Eve visit that she was disappointed in herself that things happened the way that they did… ack). Then I remembered that the Rose Bowl was going to be Wednesday evening, so I offered to meet her some place convenient for both of us, to watch the game together. She sent a “:-(” to me for not wanting to meet somewhere on Monday but agreed to Wednesday and suggested this very cool lounge.
Wednesday she showed up just before the game began looking very good to me. She sat very close to me, working her hands up my sleeves, but then teased that it was more about her being cold and looking for warmth than about affection. We laughed… ha ha ha. I rubbed her shoulders and she scratched my back, but I really wasn’t sure how to act. Sitting down, the small of her back was exposed and I played with her a bit, but I couldn’t read whether my affection was being appreciated or tolerated. And the game wasn’t go so well either.
Then just after half-time her boys called saying that they were hungry and that no one was there to feed them. Normally she works pretty late so I guess she didn’t bother saying anything to anyone about not being available to dinner-duty and was hoping that her not-too-significant-other would hold down the fort. Well, having been on this road as long as I have, I knew that there was a pretty good chance that we’d have game-interuptus. So when it happened I told her that that I was kind of counting on it and she left me with some cash to cover her part of the tab, gave me a kiss and scooted off to feed the kids at home. I guess that relieved me of the whole pressure of whether we’d spend some time kissing in the parking lot and other such frustrations, but it also reminded me of my marginal importance to her actual responsibilities. She called on her way home, after ordering food for the boys. SC got their asses kicked and that didn’t help my sense of what was “right in the world.”
I think we talked on the phone on Thursday and really briefly on Friday but there’s been nothing since then, and no plans to reconnect. I found out, in passing, that she has another hearing date on Friday (1/13) but she seems to not be treating this as anything really significant (or at least significant enough to signal when it will be that her soon-to-be-ex will be forced to move out of the house). Anyway, all of this feels like she’s still very much emotionally unavailable and that she’s nowhere near feeling like she’s in the position to really have someone in her life. Thus, I’m left to wonder what the hell I’m doing still “seeing” her.
After all of this time, I don’t think that she’s being any less honest with me or trying to toy with my emotions. I think that she really does love me, but hasn’t gotten to the place where she feels like she can have that in her life in a more meaningful way than to be my friend. I do not see anything devious in her actions and just feel this is where she’s at. Now in her eagerness to be done with the part of her life that’s holding her up I think she does what we all do when we want to move on, and that is to underestimate how long it’s going to take for her to really be there. That’s not deception, but just what one does to get through the shit one often has to get through. And quite frankly, it may be taking her forever, but she’ll most likely be in a healthier place when she gets there. Alas, having no guarantees or even any emotional energy left for this journey of unknown length, I have to wonder what I’m doing, why I’m still here.
After meeting a couple last summer who had gotten together through e-harmony my interest was piqued. My running partner, Colleen, gave e-harmony a try last October but didn’t seem to like it all that much because she was getting so many matches and guys she contacted got upset with her when she didn’t respond to them right away. She was obviously looking for something much more casual and being as attractive as she is, she got a lot more attention that required much more work than she wanted to do. Not that I’d expect my experience to be the same, but that was enough for me to hold off putting my name on the list until I felt like I could devote the time needed to do the process right. I’d completed all of the questionnaires and profile material but didn’t want to do it before the new year because somehow that seemed even more desperate. But then seeing her for New Years after not seeing her in almost three months, and seeming to click with her (at least for that one night)… it really makes it hard for me to try to think about going out there to start something with someone else. But I have to face the fact that regardless of our feelings, her life is such that she cannot freely be my girlfriend and it could easily many many months, if not more than a year, before she’ll feel comfortable having that kind of relationship with me. I really don’t know. Clearly I don’t like the way things are but having tried to remain at my post long beyond what a reasonable person would attempt, I have no emotional stamina to just be the buddy when I know that we could be so much more for one another. But maybe that’s all just wishful thinking on my part. I know that I need more than just good intentions, but one cannot just make-up the kind of connection we’ve had (when we’ve had any connections). What a mess. JBB