Wednesday, December 17, 2014

A Woman Wiser Once More

Obviously you can tell from my last post that the Turk and I fell and love and are obviously getting married and popping out some half Turkish, half blonde-haired, blue-eyed kids. So, then, what? Totally Turkish? Well that breaks rule Number One. So obviously he had to go.

Halloween ended up being the last time I would see him. He was supposed to come over the following day to finish what he started, but when he got done with work at 5pm, he said he was too tired (which makes sense considering he was snuggling with me until 5am for Lord knows why and gets up at 7am to work on Saturdays) and was going to go to sleep.

I got annoyed. He had already invited himself back into my life, which was dumb enough. Then he didn't respond to a text the night before until 3am when he picked us up. Then he invited himself into my bedroom to cuddle like all is good, which was even dumber. So I called him to call him out after he canceled via text and after chatting 10 minutes, he said, "I just parked. Let me call you back when I get in my house."

"Okay," I replied and hung-up.  Instead, 5 minutes later, this happened:

And that, I would later realize, is my version of a 'fuck you'. I'm done playing nice. Don't like me because I don't care any more. I'm over it.

A few days later he texted me a simple 'hello.' I responded with a 'hello' back. A few moments later I got a voice mail notification. Earlier in the day I was talking to my sister, she tried to call and then texted it was going straight to voice mail. (Sprint sucks.) So just as I was ringing him back, I got a text notification saying "sorry, my ass dialed you." (I immediately hung up; he never got my call back.)

Now on what fucking planet am I suppose to believe that it was his butt that dialed just after texting me?! So, naturally, I timed it from my work phone - the time between the first hello, what's up and receiving the voicemail - and there's no way it was a mistake. That bitch was covering his ass because the girl he hoped to rope back in refused his call - so he thought. Since then, I haven't heard from him, which is good, because there are four things I have learned from this experience:

1. Never date a man with a bidet (or toy dog). Once I see it, all I can picture is him hovering over his toilet getting a squirt of water in his bum. And he had each toilet in his condo equip with enormous ad-on bidet contraptions which made it all the more awful and hilarious. This also means that he guy is probably pretty high maintenance - which falls in line with his having a toy poodle. (As if I didn't learn enough from the four fucking chihuahuas that first time.) So, ya, no bidets (or toy dogs).

2. I would rather have a poor man's time than a rich man's money. I'm not interested in a man that works 12 hour days six days a week to surround himself with things and stuff. I want adventure and love and togetherness. Fuck the Mercedes and fancy dinners at nice restaurants; I want to cuddle to Saturday morning cartoons. Some gals value material things and show (and that's fine for them); this has made me realize where my priorities stand and have never been so crystal clear.

3. Trust your subconscious. In a moment of full disclosure, this thing didn't just end with a dream, it began with one too. The Wednesday night of our second date, he slept over. Shortly after falling asleep, I awoke to my own screaming. "NOOOO!" as he shook me awake, concerned. I never wake up screaming from nightmares; I rarely have nightmares. He asked if it was about him. I lied and said it wasn't. What my subconscious realized long before I did was that, to him, my opinion was optional.

4. Red flags are red matter how sweet the presentation of the man carrying the torch of waving scarlet fabric and time and space will fully illuminate them like a spotlight in the dark of a once romantically-lit room. They become visible only when we are no longer blinded by a person's intoxicating presence and the incredible, exciting darkness of the promise of what 'could be'.

Because there was good there. There was. The words he said, "I don't care what we do, as long as I am with you." The attraction. The way he made me feel. Those moments of absolute fucking entangled perfection. My heart's content. And that connection I swear to LBJ wasn't just in my head. The feeling of just missing someone again. And the fucking psychic predicting exactly him. But there was also bad; those whistling red flags.

I've learned all relationships are the weight of what's good of a person versus what is bad. That's what defines if a partnership will work: that the good outweighs the bad. I refused to commit because I hadn't yet navigated the bad; weighed it out. Then the time away took from him, his ability to 'look' at me that way that had me entranced; it magnified all of the things that made me resist him from the start. The mother fucking control, reminiscent of my tight-shipped childhood. The way he reminded me of the false-Casanova my dad pretended to be. Like the time my dad was talking to a girl and said, "I love you," to end the conversation and when he hung up, bitched about how stupid she was, and when we asked him why he said he loved her responded, "They're just words." At a very young age, my sisters and I learned he would say - to his many women - what he thought a woman wanted to hear. To falsely feed into their feminine desires to satiate his ego and lie to cover what he thought they shouldn't know. And we bore witness all of our lives.

But the moment that sparked the end - the final high flying, Mario at the end of the level red flag - for me was a week into the Turk being gone. And in one of the first times we got to talk in a week he asked for photos of my ass. When I declined because I was with family and also just 'no', he insisted and I got pissed. That night I declared, "Well, if nothing else comes of this, at least I got these sweet socks." The room full of people laughed (as I showcased the epic socks he said his grandmother made), but I kinda knew then where everything was going. He wasn't who he had pretended to be. He wasn't my Casanova, even though I wished he were. And when he had told me that first week that if I "gained 10 pounds, we were just friends" he wasn't fucking kidding. He also wasn't kidding when he said I could "get bug bites, but no bruises". In his absence, he didn't have the balance of charisma to fix how fucking pissed off I was becoming - like when he told me my lipstick was "tacky" but with such a charming smile I simply told him to piss off and moved on.  Or how disrespected I felt when he told me to excuse myself from my family to take a photo of my bum for his enjoyment - all while counting down the battery on his phone, like you better fucking hurry. He couldn't be there charm me; to kiss it all better; to stop me from ruining it irrevocably because I refused to be unheard or controlled or disrespected with countdowns and bullshit.

The spotlight had been cast.

Nonetheless and still a girl in want, I spent the month both trying to save 'us' and continually pushing him the fuck away from me. I was fighting with this thing I wanted so much with my heart and the logic of what I knew was a terrible mistake. A mistake who's lightness only shown through with the clarity of time and space. A tumultuous argument that leaves you yelling at the blank space of what was because the thing you've so revered to both love and hate, you cannot even communicate with. It was a miserable place to be, both in lust and disdain; incredible want and a growing resentment and with the absence of its protagonist to resolve it.

I held onto the hope that maybe, just maybe, it would all work out because I wanted to feel that way again. It was intoxicating. And he did come back for just that second long enough for me to realize it was still a bunch of bullshit. Still, I mourned the chance to feel the way again because, really, how often does it come along and how often does someone look at you like you're a fucking drug; treat you like their life's purpose? But addicts are fickle and false and tricky. And oh so bad for you.

It has taken me until now to realize this is how abusive relationships start: You are so charmed that you don't even notice all the ways they try to change you; control you. And claim you as "my property." And that's not to say that's what he was doing; honestly I'm not even sure he really knows what he's doing. But I've come to realize just how fucked up I could have become had it let myself fall in love with him; with the idea of the wonderful things he was selling - and have altered myself to be with him like he wanted; keep him happy. But even still, I wonder: How much of it was real? I think, on some level, he did have feelings. But I also think, on some greater level, he simply wanted a trophy - a beautiful thing. And I want to be am so much more than just a beautiful thing.

As is the nature of entanglements, I wish it could have been perfect. I wish it may have been more than just a few months and four lessons. But it wasn't. It wasn't my time; my turn. I had have more to learn. My turn still lays ahead of me - a woman wiser once more.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Kris Single

I hope you caught that title pun.


A year ago, at Christmas, my sisters’ expanding families continued to flood the house with burps and breast milk and more little humans. I questioned aloud – half in jest, half honestly – “how long before I lose my room and am relegated to sleeping on the couch?”

“Don’t be silly. That’s not going to happen,” my mom replied.

I got a text from her the other night. This Christmas I’m sleeping on the couch. In the basement.

She told me that my sister’s kids need my room and my sister and her husband can’t sleep on the pull-out couch because there are two of them and only one of me. The other sister, pregnant again, somehow smashes all of her family into another small room. I know my mother does her best and the house is small and my sisters’ are ever expanding their families, but this makes me feel incredibly less important. And the logic of saying her kids take my room and so she gets the other bedroom and I get the couch, is lost on me. Why do other people's life choices mean that they deserve preferential treatment as I become second class?

And I’d like to point out that this is less about complaining and more about understanding – and commiserating. I debated writing about because I don't want my family to read this and get upset - or think this was somehow slighting them - but then I saw this bit of brilliance. And realized it's not just me. Singles aren't the ungrateful or complaining or unloving other child, we’re just a human...with feelings. It has greatly deepened my understanding of why Christmas time invites the highest rate of suicide. (Not that I’m suicidal - I just understand the adult magnification of these things now.)

When my mom texted me to tell me that my Christmas was as lowly basement dwelling couch-surfer, she said that I had a choice: Sleep in (what was previously) my small bedroom with two toddlers in a trundle bed or take the basement couch with partitions for “privacy”.

I replied, "I pick that [my sister whose kids took over my room] sleeps in the room with her kids. And I get my own space instead of being relegated to the couch. Like the one person who is used to her own space, gets none. That’s where I get anxious." It's important to note that single, childless people are used to their space and their quiet and putting them in a house with 12 people, including 5 kids, is like taking someone from a quiet white sand beach, throwing them into a squall and watching as they spin around going: WTF I WAS JUST ENJOYING MY FUCKING FROZEN DAIQUIRI IN PEACE?!

My mother continued by asking where my sister’s husband would sleep. I responded with something resembling: How about the sofa bed I'm being relegated to. "Since, you know, I don’t bring any extra people." She explained her reasoning to giving up my room to my nieces, which I understood. And I responded, done hiding all the bad things with, "Sometimes I feel less important because it is just me. I try to be flexible but sometimes that’s easier said than done."

Her advice was to look at it as “one big happy family,” instead of frustrating and she actually ended up being incredibly understanding, to the point of my near-tears.  However, just calling my new citizenship another name doesn't really work in the reality of December 25th: A sad clown with a painted smile is still sad. And on top of that, that 'big happy family' has all had children, so they have decided that they don’t want to buy adult gifts, because Christmas for them is about kids now. Which is also fine, but I am still expected to buy gifts for the kids. So then Christmas morning looks like this: Everyone is with their families, opening gifts. The single aunt is by herself in the corner - clandestinely crying into her coffee. (Just a little hyperbole.)

It’s not that I want things (I actually hate the consumerism of Christmas), but I want to feel like someone thought about me. Like fuck, we’re the only family she has, maybe we should get her something to show her someone loves her too. Or, nobody buys anyone anything and we just eat all day like Thanksgiving. I would be happy with that. Instead, it becomes: go spend money on half a dozen people and then nobody gets anything for you. (But...isn't this why I haven't had kids yet?!) 

I have come to realize that nothing makes you understand how very alone you are in the world quite like your family on Christmas if you’re the only solo one left. It is so incredibly possible to feel more lonely in the wrong room full of right people, than in any room alone. And I think this is particularly poignant for women. Men are bachelors. Savvy. Sexy. Whatever. And for women it’s like: Look at you with no kids in the corner with your coffee and your 200 pairs of shoes and "aw, old maid that's funny." It can be particularly difficult for women because society pressures and defines them by these fucked up standards - to be deemed worthy by husbands and motherhood - which Christmas magnifies.

In any case, it is an uncomfortable situation when that aunt/uncle/cousin/sister/brother is sitting quietly alone with their coffee, trying not to disturb the familial merriment they're subject to witness and their unaware family is just like, “What’s their problem? Did s/he want gifts?" No. That person just wants to matter still. Bridget still wants to be included in her family’s Christmas card. Why should she matter less for making decisions different than that of family members'? This isn't about the space in a house. It is about how much it hurts to feel less-than for choice not of your own -  probably more than mastisis.

I like the different-than-my sisters' choices I have made. I don’t want my worth to have to be defined by having a partner to bring home to family just to get my own room - or just a bed. I don't think it is fair to say that having kids to feed to makes the worth of my time or money or energy any different than that of a parents'. I get parenting is hard. Oh trust me, I do. But being single isn’t easy all the time either. Well, it is – except for Christmas on a lumpy couch and a cup of coffee as your new immediate family.

So this Christmas, think of the singles. They're just really, really big kids. And they depend on you too.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Disheveled and Braless, Fuckin' Superheros

You know what I discovered? Single mom is NOT a good look on me. It looks greasy and disheveled and braless; clad in yoga pants and baby food laden shirts, all while too exhausted to really care. Maybe this is why people get married before breeding: No, sir. You cannot leave. There is this piece of paper that requires you to still call me pretty even though I have poop in my hair!

Two weeks ago I flew to Indiana to help my sister because her husband had been in the hospital all week (with they didn’t know what) and she had no help. She has three children: three year old twins and an 11 month old. Suffice to say, I assumed she would be falling apart and needing family and an extra two hands.

The twins started pre-school early, on account of my niece being special needs spectacular, but being three years old, they only spend three hours in school. So after a weekend with them, I had everyone to myself on Monday. The eldest woke me up at 9:35a and I thanked her for letting me sleep in. My sister’s house is small so I was sleeping in the toddler bed and when the eldest came in (she was sharing a bed with my sister) and woke me, I put on my glasses to discover the 11 month old had been staring at me from her crib for quite some time. When I looked over, she smiled. The younger twin was still fast asleep. This is to say these children are rather ‘easy’, from a child care stand point.

I’ve decided when I have children I’m just going to give them to my sister for two years and then take them back once they’re all properly calm and awesome and just wait in their cribs smiling at me until I’m ready to wake up. That's what us that are 31 and childless like to think it is like anyway. Otherwise no one would ever breed, right?

So my day as a single SATM looked like this: Put the eldest in front of the TV with raisins and milk. Change the 11 month old; feed the 11 month old. My sister took the keys to the backdoor, so I climb over the fence to feed the dogs. Then head back to the kitchen and start breakfast for the twins. Pick out outfits for school. Wake up the younger twin, change her, and position her on the couch to out-groggy herself before breakfast. Finish making breakfast and feed the twins; clean up the babes and their trays. Give the eldest her clothes to get dressed; help her. Dress the other twin. Dress the baby. I am still in yoga pants, no bra and my now greasy hair is dangling from whatever half-assed bun I slept in. I consider taking a shower, but at this point it is five to 12 and I know that the bus comes at 12:30 and the last thing I want is to miss the bus. I put off my shower until just one child is loose. I go to clean the kitchen. I hear a THWAP! The baby got out of her Bumbo chair and fell off the couch onto hardwood. Whoops. I react accordingly, which is to say I didn’t react at all and just picked her up and took her to the kitchen with me, which immediately calmed the surprised terror off her face. 

Whew. Crisis averted.

I tell the older one to go pee. For whatever reason, getting her to pee is an incredible struggle. (Although I still don't condone "so-and-so went on the potty!" facebook posts, I get it. A little. Not enough that I think it should continue to be public knowledge, but a little.) So I turn off the television and entice her that it can be put back on once she goes. She does. I tell her to put on her socks and shoes. She gets the right feet. Go her. I put socks and shoes on the younger twin who is now so full of blueberries, bananas and scrambled pizza eggs (I don't know, it seemed like a good idea at the time) that sitting still is just about the last thing she is interested in doing. Ten hyperbolic minutes later we’ve got shoes on both kids. It's 12:25p. I stare out of the door for the next 15 minutes waiting for my shower -- I mean the bus. It's 10 minutes late, but I feel a bit of success in accomplishing my first real goal of the day which is to just get them on the damn bus. It felt like a huge fucking victory at that point. I encourage the eldest to get on the bus. The younger twin is in her own world and not listening, so – with the baby on my hip – I grab the twin from the porch, put her on the other hip, get her backpack and carry both to the bus. I hand off the child and the pack and explain I’m the aunt when they think I'm the mom. Either I'm doing something right or I'm just looking the part. But, who cares bye now because I’d like a shower. I head back in and, with the baby still on my hip, get a glimpse in the mirror.

Oh, the horror.

Single mother is NOT a good look on me. I look completely disheveled and like I haven’t showered for days. At least, I thought, I had the decency to put on a bra for the bus ladies. I immediately take a shower, but not before putting the baby in a laundry basket to drag into the bathroom with me. I did not want her falling off the couch or something again. Every few minutes I’d poke my head out of the shower I was singing in to make sure she was enjoying the concert fine. After I dress, I head to the kitchen with my laundry basket baby and we do the dishes and clean up as I put on a one woman show. Afterwards, I feed her again, and put her down for a nap. I had time to clean the living room and put on my makeup/dry my hair. I almost looked human again. And then it’s time to pick up the twins from school, so unfortunately I had to wake her up after a short 20 minute nap. She didn’t care.

So into the car we go. When I pick up the twins, I’m two minutes late. The eldest screams my name joyfully. We head out. She then begins to cry and scream for someone to help her when the teacher picks her up because she is refusing to walk through the parking lot. I think, "Oh shit. They're going to think I'm stealing these children!" Everything became fine when she got to grab onto my shoulder as I carried the other two to the car. Aww. She wanted ME?! I melt. Once in the car, she’s still upset so I ask if she’d like a milkshake – mostly because her auntie wanted a burger and shake all day, but hey, two for one – she says yes and by the time I get to Steak and Shake, she’s asleep.

We get back and I put the asleep one on the couch. (Oh, did I forgot to mention her kids also sleep through damn near everything? It’s very convenient.) I feed the younger twin her burger while I put the baby back in her crib to nap. Then the younger twin was super hyperactive in my face – which might have been the milkshake I’d given her – but I figured was her different little way of saying she was tired, so I put her in her bed. She fell asleep. Suddenly I noticed ALL OF THE BABIES WERE ASLEEP! Holy shit this is great. I can take over Netflix! An episode of Parks and Recreation later, my sister came home to a clean house with sleeping babies and when she walked in the door said, “Wow. You’re good.”

THANK YOU! But fuck man, good is really difficult. And it makes me realize that I’m totally okay being childless for quite a while longer. Even the logistics of getting a simple cup of coffee are completely elevated to the level of “fuck it, water wine is fine” when it involves strapping little humans into seats and shit. Our mom was still at my sister's when I called yesterday to talk about my going back this weekend and even she said, “I don't know how [your sister] does it. I have no idea how I did this with you three! And I really have no idea how your grandmother did it with five of us!!”

Me neither mom, but thank you. Holy shit. And thank you.*

*Mothers are fuckin' superheros.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The Scientific Method

There are a number of things that I do that one might call "experiments". They may also call them any one or combined number of these items: cheap, broke, lazy, absent-minded, clumsy, curious, drunk and/or bored. Stemming from these kinds of experiments are all kinds of little dos and don'ts (mostly don'ts) I've learned throughout the years, such as:

  • Do not stick your thumb in the wheel of a grocery cart because it will rip off your thumb nail and force your mother abandon the Cookie Crisp and run four year old you to the hospital.

  • Do not put your finger in an empty light socket of a lamp while it is plugged because it will shock the shit out of seven year old you. 

  • When your grandmother is trying to get you to eat she will lie and tell you things like 'pork rinds are just pork-flavored potato chips', so do your homework. 

  • Do not go home with a bartender you do not intend to sleep with because he will kick you out and leave you stranded.

  • Do not take off leggings and wear them as a scarf even if your male friends convince you it looks good because it does not look good.

  • Do not sit in the front seat of a cab at 3am chatting with the driver with leggings - previously removed and tried as a failed scarf - in your pocket and in knee high boots and a tiny sweater dress because a cop will accuse you of prostitution. 

  • Popcorn does not absorb alcohol, so don't expect it to. 

  • Do not try to GPS home drunk walking because it will take four hours and two miles to go the three blocks to your house. 

  • Do not decide you're too cheap to cab five miles home (with the logic that you run the five miles sober in tennis shoes without issue), while barefoot and after a pedicure so intense the guy says, "There you sexy now; you get a man with your baby feet.", because it will hurt like hell and take forever.
  • *Although I still drink for free to this day, so maybe that one wasn't so bad.

    So it seems over the years I've learned all these little tid-bits but it hasn't really occurred to me to share them until now. The latest happened this past weekend when I knew what I was doing could go either way, but considered it an experiment. It all started with a pack of turkey hot dogs that I had opened a few weeks ago, but had yet to expire. Although, I completely ignore expiration dates anyway. I don't believe in them: Smell is typically my expiration date. However if there's a vein in an egg, the egg is in the trash immediately, but ironically, (as I learned while making a hot dog mac'n'cheese breakfast on Saturday) if one hot dog in the pack is moldy, I don't trash it immediately. Yea, I realize that's gross.

    Although I don't consider it as gross as the moment in September (while we were battling pantry moths) when I poured my last box of mac'n'cheese (I swear I don't eat that much mac'n'cheese) in the boiling water and immediately noticed the parade of eggs and larvae dancing around the pot and deeply contemplated scooping out the babies and eggs and eating it anyway. (Don't worry. I didn't.)

    However, this does remind me of the time when I was around 10 and my mom made broccoli soup from scratch with broccoli from our garden. My sisters didn't like veggies and I ate eat anything, so just as I was about to dig in alone, I asked my mom what the white things were floating on top and she said, quite curt, "It's just onions! EAT IT!". So I did, until she sat down five minutes later with her bowl of soup - and mine half gone - and told me to stop. Because once she glanced at hers, she realized the onions were actually little worms. Apparently you have to carefully wash these normal broccoli-dwelling worms out of your broccoli before using it. (Life before Internet was hard.)

    • Wait until the cook eats until you do, particularly if there are any questionable items going on with your meal because it could be worms.

    Back to the hot dogs at hand. There were five left in the pack. Not one to waste, I decided that since they didn't feel slimy they were fine aside from the mold. So I pulled out the moldy one, and threw the other four in the pot of boiling water with the macaroni. I hypothesized that it would kill whatever bad things were lurking in the mold. After about a minute in the water, I pulled out three and let the fourth stay boiling until the pasta was finished and then went about making a normal bowl of mac'n'cheese with hot dog - because apparently I'm five. I ate the bowl and immediately my stomach began to gurgle and then I became deeply fascinated with my bathroom for an hour.

    • Do not eat moldy hot dogs even if you boil them because duh.

    I was aware it was an experiment at the time, but now I'm not sure if it went awry or deemed successful. But according to the Scientific Method, it's not science until I share my results, so here we are: Moldy hot dogs are bad and don't eat them. Aren't you glad I do this leg work for you? You're welcome.

    Tuesday, November 4, 2014

    A Large Part of the Human Condition

    Well we might as well follow this soap opera through since we've brought it step-by-step this far...

    So there I was on Friday, I had just been coaxed into going out for Halloween, via text, while out to lunch with coworkers. I had a last minute costume all figured out - since it was last years original until the skirt I bought from Japan was too small and I turned into Sandra Dee instead. I was going as a pin-up. Or something close enough - who cares, I wasn't planning on going out anyway.

    On my drive back to work, I get a text from the Turk. A brief exchange follows:

    So the night begins. He texts me his location around 11p. My girlfriends and I are at a house party on the other side of town, but we want to go dance. The area he is in is my new favorite and my current place to dance since my old roommates E and M went to a Body Language concert in September and then got to this bar/club early enough after the early concert to have the whole floor to ourselves and wriggle like no one else existed. (Those are my favorite kind of nights.)

    I response to his text, I told him I could text when we left the house party if he wanted. When we got to the bar near him, I told him where we had ended up, which was a couple of blocks from where he was. I think he thought I was going to be alone and meeting him, because his only response to the where we were and you can meet us text was, "Us?"

    After an hour and a half, at 2 am, with no further response from him after explaining the 'us', I texted back, "Cool. Thanks." And I was ready to leave since it was way too packed to dance and I was irritated after I had gotten dead air from this dickhead again. My girlfriends, however, were not. So at 3am, the bar was closing and we were being kicked out (thank God) and on our way to pray to the LBJ that we could catch a cab (since the metro closed at 3). Walking down the steps, at 3:04am, I get a call from the Turk who asks where I am and, when I say leaving the bar, he asks which, where, and that he'd be there to pick us up. FANTASTIC! Whew. Free ride and not dealing with the lack of cabs and Ubers on Halloween! 
    "banana for scale!"

    And then, midway through the taxi-bration, my brain went "what the fuck", which was quickly pushed aside while we entertained ourselves on the sidewalk and did things like take pictures with strangers and fruit. 20 minutes later, he pulled up with the same friend that he had made get a hotel the night we met so he could go home with me: Apparently he always drives his friend in his friend's car when they go out clubbing. Getting into the car wasn't quite as bizarre as maybe now I think it should have been. But you know what was bizarre in the moment? That he kept putting his hand behind his seat - I was seated directly behind him - to try to hold my hand; rather get me to hold his hand. I flicked it and high-fived it instead. Very mature. He turned sideways in his seat so he could see me when traffic was crawling or stopped. He looked at me that weird, adoring way again. And all I could think was: WHAT THE FUCK IS THIS.

    We drop off my two girlfriends at their place and the two Turks drove me onto mine. The Turk's friend asks if we were going to go to the diner we went to before: The one we at at until 5am the night before the Turk left for Turkey. That place, I later was told, where I was teaching a girl at another table to do yoga and the Turk looked on amused. See, I'm fucking funny.

    Both the Turk and I said we weren't going to the diner. One, I wasn't hungry and two, it was 4am and I wasn't particularly drunk. Tispy for sure, but not drunk enough for waffles at 4am dressed as a pin-up - and especially not with this guy that gave me the shove off a month ago and is now trying to hold my hand like nothing bad happened. As a concession, the other Turk said he wanted coffee so I invited him in for a cup. I made him his coffee then went to my room to change out of my costume. The friend headed to the living room to drink is brew and the Turk followed me into my room.

    He sat on my bed and pulled me toward him. To cuddle. Not to kiss. Not to bang. He wanted to fucking cuddle. WHAT THE BLOOD CURLING SCREAM OF A FUCK.

    To be honest, though, it was nice to be wanted, to feel as though I wasn't crazy enough not to be missed, to have that body and warmth and spoon. Was it him? I wondered, or was it that anyone would have been nice? But that didn't matter, it was him there: It was this guy that jerked me around, who gave me a shit send off. Who I mulled over until I realized he didn't matter in my life and if he drove off that road, good riddance to him. I asked if he missed me and he refused to say anything; he said he wouldn't answer that question. A few moments later I asked, "What are you doing here?" while we lay intertwined on my bed.

    "I wanted to make sure you got home safe."

    "Well, I'm home," I said matter-of-factly, as he looked at me quizzically. "So what are you doing here?"

    "I wanted to see you," he said.

    "Well," I said dryly, "you saw me."

    "Are you kicking me out," he asked.

    "No," I said, "But I want to know what you are doing here." I can't even remember the response, so suffice to say it was nothing worth remembering. More time passed, mostly in silence or general chatter. He smelled me; I could hear and feel him smell me...You smell me?!

    Laying against each other at the edge of the bed, he looked into my eyes and we said nothing. And after about a half an hour alone, I kissed him with hesitance and lustful necessity; smashing my red lipstick all over his mouth, pulling away with a giggle as I saw this man - who wants to always be so in control - painted with a crimson lust. I wiped it from his face as I declared, quite confidently,"You missed me."

    "I'm not going to say anything," was his response - or something like it.

    "Well did you miss me?"

    "What do you think," he said in that way that suggests you're stupid for thinking otherwise.

    "I don't know," I said, because, you know, I didn't know.

    "Did you miss me?" he responded.

    "No," I said, "I hated you." A hyperbole, I realized, but I hated the moments and ridiculous situation(s) he put me in well enough. I hated thinking about him. I hate that he ditched me. I hate that he tried to force something I wasn't ready for. I hated that he was back and I let him be back. And that I didn't hate him. In fact, I almost liked him there.

    To which he retorted, "Well that's good! If you didn't hate, you were indifferent. If you hated me, then you had feelings." Oh yea, good, that's great, Captain Mindfuck! 

    Moments passed as we lay there together - listening to his friend rustle about in the living room while giving us our time alone. It was nearly 5am. I was sitting up when he asked about a trinket he had bought for me and hung on my wall during the first week we were dating. A trinket he couldn't possibly see from the position he had been in for 20 minutes, which means he noted it when he walked into the room. I asked him to repeat himself - one, because facing the opposite way it didn't make sense so I wasn't sure what I heard and two, to gauge the kind of reaction he would have from saying something as vulnerable as 'I noticed you removed me from your life'.

    He wouldn't repeat it. So I went on talking about the trinket and that I took it down - however, I didn't throw it away. (I can never bring myself to throw gifts from exes away. Whoops.) The trinket missing from the wall lead into another discussion about what the fuck he was doing there because "Why the do you care if I got rid of something you gave me". And why he was back and he's the one that actively went away. AND WHY ARE YOU FUCKING WITH MY EMOTIONS I DO NOT DESERVE THIS I JUST GOT OVER YOU AND DIDN'T CARE AT ALL GO AWAY PLEASE NOW WTF, ETC, ETC. Except that last part was just in my head, instead I said, "You're the one that stopped talking to me, remember? And I understand hooking up, but you're clearly not here to hook up, so WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE."

    And, as if my dream was a foreshadow of the nearly the exact events to come the following days, he said, "I don't want to do this. I don't want to talk about this."

    "Neither do I. You're the one that brought it up," I said as I laid back down on his chest - like that was a good fucking idea. Just as good as the the fucking idea I had a few minutes later, that was barely worth the effort, but really was my entire goal the whole night - so I can't kick myself. Although, I got from it a ridiculous story from the tryst -- that I just HAVE to save for the book - as well as the shit realization that the feelings for him I discarded were merely buried just beneath the surface, all while I thought I'd snuffed them out entirely with logic and time.

    Well, that sounds fucking familiar.

    Damn you, heart. Damn you, boys. Damn this shit; these games. I just want to shut the door in his face (which I haven't ruled out yet), but I am reluctant to ever leave something open to ever asking, "what if". They haunt me, the 'what if's', and likely not for my greater good. And they continue trample me in the aftermath of 'I only know its a mistake if I make the mistake'. That sounds like a large part of the human condition. And I suppose we all have to suffer.

    But fuck, man. Enough already.

    Thursday, October 30, 2014

    Episode: I don't understand men.

    Yesterday morning I woke up remembering a very vivid late morning dream. It was about the Turk. A surprise topic since I really hadn't been thinking much about that situation since ya'll watched me process it through two weeks ago. (I never did send that email.) But the dream was hilarious and fantastic and I took it to mean I was feeling quite myself again. It went as such:

    We were apparently living in the same building. He had just returned from Turkey and I saw him enter with his bags while I doing laundry in the common area. He left a partially scratched lotto ticket on my chest freezer - which was behind the washer in the common area. I pretended not to see him as I passed, but bumped into him while heading back to my room so I'd know he saw me; I noticed he had the purple lotto ticket. I went to my room briefly and when I went back to the freezer, the ticket was still there. (The number scratched was 10 and three horizontal lines to the left of it.) So I walked over to him - while he was crouched down riffling through his bags - to give it back and he shut the door in my face. So I put my foot in the door and he was like, "I don't want to do this."  
    I said, "Do what? Here's your ticket you left it on my freezer." He said it wasn't his and I said I saw him with it. He took it and then he went on about how he didn't want to fight. And I was totally calm going, "Um. I don't want to fight with you." He said we weren't going to get back together - and while he said that, his toupee* fell off the back of his head and he just put his hand out in front of himself and caught it and put it back on and didn't acknowledge it happened; just kept talking. Then I just lost it cracking up laughing and said "I definitely don't want to get back together with you, but we live in the same building so we should at least be friendly." 
    *no, he doesn't wear a toupee IRL
    And then this happened yesterday evening:

    ::blinks emphatically:: what?!

    My initial reaction was: what the fuck. And my current reaction is: what the fuck. Like what are you doing and didn't you choose to go away already?

    Here was the awkward 200 year old sea turtle of a conversation that followed:

    But what I really wanted to say was "What do you want?" Like "Um, excuse me, what the fuck are you doing? What is this right here?" as I tap on the screen. Didn't we do this already and you gave me the shove off and we couldn't agree on the fact that I don't commit that quickly and you wanted to force me into exclusivity? And that whole I'm in Turkey and move on without me part. Seriously, what do you want? Because I am not at all prepared to deal with this shit all over again. Let us not play games.

    This happens time and again - and I'm not sure how often it happens to me versus what is considered normal - if there is such thing as normal - but I am the girl that 1. friends fall for and 2. exes come back to. Why?! 1. We're friends; don't ruin that. And 2. we've been there already and it hurt. Granted, this situation as been slightly different than normal completely ridiculous from the start, but I moved past that part of giving a shit and wanting to be with him and why would I want to go through that again. And then, as a total human, I also want that chance for anyone who saw me misrepresented, to see who I really am versus that fucked of version of ovarian cysts and scared and resisting girl. Also - let's be honest here - physical attraction and adult needs...knoamsayin?.

    This is an incredibly shit catch-22, but I suppose that's just following due course of a situation that has been as incredibly fucked up as this since day one. And no, for those playing the home version, he hasn't responded and I'm leaving it at that. I felt as though it ended the game and absolves me from any further thought or action. If he was giving me the heads up that he's back because he thought I cared, I didn't - and that can lie there forever as an end because I don't need upper-hand power and, as far as I'm concerned, my cute, conveniently-timed dreaming, toupee-inventing brain says I have it anyway. And if he was testing the waters to see if I'm still interested in him or if I am dating someone else, I think I answered that question in a pseudo-invitation to invite me to hang out. And bravo to me, I think, for that clever and slightly low hanging fruit of 'let's not play this game' because it is clear to me now that I don't understand men, but here I feel as though perhaps I'm learning to deal with them better.

    So there ya go, guys: the Turk is back from Turkey. Now we know. The end(?).

    Sunday, October 19, 2014

    Less of a Freak

    10/14/14 ...

    Facebook is often an unflattering pain in the ass, but today it's been a wondrous thing - it's made me feel like less of a freak. In between the engagement, wedding and baby photos, was this ["What And Almost Relationship Looks Like"] suggested article (dangling below someone's Thought Catalog post). OMG! I thought reading it: It's not just me and panic and psychics getting inside my head - predicting HG and the Turk to a T. We all do this - and I with the incredible pull of these boys: Like I the light and they the moths - to which I respond with subsequent panic and questions of intention.

    And just after reading that - wondering how I fell in love so easy in my teen and early 20s, then never again since then and what went so wrong with me - I read this ["17 Things to Expect When You Date a Girl Who's Used to Being On Her Own"]. And I really am not alone. We're all doing this: Swinging our arms and guarding our hearts, seeing who ducks and who is left standing. I'm not a god-damned freak; a mutant of love and loss. I am a girl scared of getting hurt. A girl who's comfort zone became single and alone. A girl who tests and guards her heart because, fuck, that shit hurts. We are 30(ish) and single, but we are still trying - even if that means we are weary and testing. That's what matters, I hope: that we try. But fuck, girls, if it doesn't still hurt and at times make us doubt our worth; ignite our buried fears. I just have to tell myself if I drive them away now, it's better than later. But I can't help but think they don't even know me, just the scared girl handing out difficult and weird entrance exams on the way to her heart. And as each fails, I self-doubt - even when I know I've done the right thing. But I am not alone; we are not alone. And good. That feels good.