Problem Girl

Another day, another petty argument.

This one was between two very stubborn individuals, the guy who accidentally hit the girl in the nose, and the girl who only needed a few moments before the pain went away before she was better. We were in his room, getting ready to watch a show with all the lights off, so there was no way he could see that my nose wasn’t bleeding or anything. Even after realizing I was fine, and recalling a time when I’ve had worse and my nose was actually bleeding from getting hit, he still insisted that I go to the bathroom and check myself out. I did, but the back-and-forth soured my mood for the rest of the evening.

It’s been said that if you’re fighting, you’re a compatible couple. I have to laugh at that, because sometimes those arguments and fights that couples have are pure drama, they serve no purpose other than to belittle the other partner. It’s all the unhappiness they feel normally, that they keep bottled up until something breaks, at which point they don’t care if they hurt their partner because they’ve been living with their own emotional pain. Somehow, I always find the love in my arguments with J. He wasn’t satisfied with me saying I felt fine, he wanted me to actually look and make sure that my nose wasn’t worse than I thought it was.

The problem always comes back around to being me. I should have just gotten up and checked my nose sooner, despite knowing myself well and knowing I was fine. Not only that, but all the pain I feel in regards to things between J and I, that’s all on me.

I don’t know if jealousy is an accurate description for what I feel when his ex comes to visit, or in general.

There is that voice in my head that reminds me of how I’m not friends with any of my exes, as if to tell me that I should be upset that he’s still close to his most recent ex. But then i think of Pete, who I don’t really classify as an ex because we weren’t in a romantic relationship. Pete and I are fairly good friends these days, and I’ve considered asking if he could spend a few days in January to visit me. I haven’t broached the subject, because I realize that while it would be “giving J a taste of his own medicine,” it could backfire in a number of ways, and I could be without two guy friends and be left with the constant reminder of my spiteful behavior. However, it could go positively, if I only think of it and treat it as a chance for a friend to visit and get away from his life for a while, and I show him the Asian stuff in the area that’s kept me going for the past year.

Speaking of the Asian stuff, it’s been a while since I’ve made omurice and okonomiyaki. Since omurice, or omelette rice, is simple and requires only a few everyday ingredients, I made it earlier this week. There are still other Japanese restaurants in the area I haven’t visited yet, and lately I’ve felt I should get back to taking myself out and writing about my experience as a whole. That was one of the things I used to write about here, I used to talk about Japan more, and wanting to go, and all the things I can experience over here. I never wrote about making miso soup for J, which I could have done. And at the thought of picking up where I left off with the Japanese restaurants, it doesn’t seem right to continue as I had always done, which is to say I was taking myself out to dinner. If I’m going out for Japanese food again, I want it to be with J.

But I realize that he doesn’t want me.

Well, I guess “realize” isn’t the right word, in the same way that one would realize water is wet. I could say that I’m “starting to believe,” like one would start to believe that their sand castle will withstand anything because they haven’t realized that water is also destructive. I guess I’m “leaning towards” that idea, and yes there could be nothing solid or firm there for me to lean on, and I could fall and hurt myself… because I’m dumb.

Oh, let me explain. The last time his ex was here, it was, “she (the ex) knows I’m joking,” and other things that made me feel like they were a team and I was odd man out. And when I made dinner, there were only ten rolled tacos, so I figured J could have the extra one but he split it two ways… and shared the other half with her, even though I would have liked it if it were split evenly among all three of us. When he played music, she swayed to the sound, enjoying every moment.

I can’t be her.

Not that I know how the music feels for her, but for me, it’s so much more. Lyrics are the words that are never said but often felt, the music itself conjuring up the scene of the story unfolding in a few short minutes. I can’t just sway to music, I need to perform it, I need to move my mouth and hands in such a way that I’m conveying the feeling of the song, because I feel it within me as if the words are my own and that is what I need to get out. There are a couple of songs that are personal and meaningful for me, because they make me think of my parents, and one will always make me cry. I can’t stop with, “that’s a good song,” because I get too passionate about some songs I hear. But maybe that’s all he wants, he just wants someone to sway to the music and simply be entertained, not someone like me who’s trying to figure out if he’s speaking through songs and who his heart and soul cry out to.

And there’s other ways I can’t be her. And I tell myself I should be good enough, or that I am. But then I realize that I’m nice to him in ways that don’t seem to matter as much, and I could be nicer at times when it seems more fun just to be a pain in the ass. I can’t simply show gratitude without coming off ungrateful first. And then I put myself in a mood I can’t easily shake, leaving J to wonder what’s wrong, but talking it over always comes back around to me being in the wrong and being dumb (not even in an abusive way, just reminding me that if I hadn’t said or done something a certain way, it wouldn’t have led to me overthinking a situation because nothing wrong would have happened), so lately it seems better to let my moods pass.

Although there is one advantage to knowing that I’m the problem, and that’s knowing I’m going to reject help and advice at a time when I know how things work for me. Yes, I’m sick, I came down with a cold yesterday. I texted J in the morning and told him I wasn’t feeling well, and that I’m not a whiny bitch when it comes to being sick. Basically I was telling him that I’m not the kind of girl, or person for that matter, who tucks themselves into bed and begs someone else to get them soup, get them tea, and basically wait on them hand and foot. I didn’t have to be told to take medicine, I found my antihistamines as soon as I could and took one. I drank tea and juice, and made myself soup for dinner. I left work halfway through the day because I had a headache that kept me from focusing on everything, and I didn’t think I could push through the last 4 hours of my day. I came home and took a nap, rolling out of bed when J got home from work, at which point I had more energy and felt more able to tolerate being around him.

My dinner was a mug of tea, a mug with chicken flavored instant ramen, and a plate with a grilled cheese sandwich on it. J had walked out to the kitchen around the time I was getting ready to carry everything out to the living room, at which point he offered to help me carry something. I’m not sure if being unwell caused me to get over myself, or if I was exhausted enough that I didn’t want to put up a fight, but I allowed him to carry my plate for me while I carried the two mugs, instead of insisting that I could take care of things by myself. He was rather nice to me yesterday, but again, it could be me being sick that I’m just being a bit kinder towards him.

“I’ll spare you from a kiss on the lips,” I said last night, before heading to my own room to sleep. After he questioned it, I reminded him that I was sick, something that I can obviously tell about myself even if it isn’t that apparent to anyone else. He, having an immune system I wish I had all my life, quickly pulled me close and gave me a peck on the lips.

He’s brave, that one. Kissing me when I’m contagious, dealing with my bullshit most days. I don’t want to let him go, but if he’s not into me romantically, we will have to go our separate ways one day.


Thanksgiving, Gratitude, And Happiness

“You smile more than you think you do.”

The context is lost, but J’s words still echo in my mind. It’s amazing that anything echoes in my mind, as it often feels like my thoughts and memories are arranged like stacks of books, magazines and loose pieces of paper in an endless, dusty room. My mind is full and cluttered, nothing is as it should be.

J usually sees me smile, but he’s also the one trying to make me smile as well. I wish I could sit here and say that he made me smile by giving me flowers, or being more personal and thoughtful by stopping by my favorite bakery and getting me a chocolate cornet. Alas, I’m still not his girlfriend, not that I know if he’d do such things even if I was. No, he does other things to make me smile.

I had to work a day shift on Thanksgiving, from 9 in the morning until 5:30. It was one of the slowest shifts I’ve had to work, and I hoped they would send some of us home sooner than they did. Well, I managed to be released around 5:05, and when I got home, the house feast was ready to be served. So, I had to ask… did they wait for me? Did they time everything to be ready at about the time I’d be getting home? One answer was no, that it just happened that way, and another answer was that yes, they did anticipate me having to work my full shift so I’d be walking in on all the food ready to be served. I was beside myself, because I really didn’t mind grabbing leftovers and fixing a plate of food for myself. I am just one person, and barely important enough for a whole feast to revolve around my schedule.

I felt humbled, because I hadn’t been able to help prepare any of the food (except my apple pie, which is a long story in itself for a homemade pie bought as part of a fundraiser), so I helped put away the food once everyone was done eating for the evening. The turkey was cooked in an aluminum foil pan, which I tossed out with the majority of the skeletal remains once we had picked off most of the meat. Honestly, I could have spent more time and gotten more meat off the bones, but I was trying to make short work of it. Anyway, I feared for the trash bag, thinking it would rip from the bones and the bent foil pan. I said to J that I needed assistance pulling the trash bag, but since I didn’t specifically ask for his help, he didn’t help me with the bag, and that conversation snowballed into an argument.


I was already telling myself that I needed to stop loving him, i needed to stop having this silly infatuation, that nothing would ever come of this. I can’t even compete with his ex, who stopped by before i got out of work and gave him some tres leches cake that she made, which seems to be one of his favorite foods. Now we’ve had another petty argument, making my chances that much slimmer that anything good might come of any of this.

Forget the evening cuddle session before bed. Since we fought, I wasn’t feeling amorous. I did need to take a shower, and the song “Im Gonna Wash That Man Right Out Of My Hair” was stuck in my head while I did so, or at least that one lyric repeated in my mind.

Before I started the shower, I texted him the picture I took of the slip of paper I wrote on at work, listing what I was thankful for this year. As it’s posted on a board at work, I took the picture of my entry so I could keep it, and I figured I would need it for this day but I didn’t know it would come to this. In my mind, I was trying to say, “I was thankful for you, but you just pissed me off.”

“You forgot to say…” was his reply, adding a few things that went along with the argument we just had. Oh really? At that point, I simply apologized for saying nice, positive things about him. After that, since I stepped out of the shower to respond, I stepped back into the shower and finished what I was doing.

“Good. How dare you.” I didn’t read that angrily, when I first read that. I read it in his smiling, sarcastic voice when he usually says “how dare you.” It confused me, because I was actually regretting that I had even had a positive thing to say about him, and to post it in a public space.

“I’m thankful for you too. Usually.” Why? Why did he have to say that? I was mad at him! I mean, clearly my judgment is clouded by the crush I have on him, so if I stop having feelings, I’ll see him as he really is. But what have I even done that he’s thankful for me? I feel like a placeholder, like I’m just here until things work in such a way that he gets his ex back, or that I’ll be less important once he has another girlfriend.

And I shouldn’t feel that way. I feel like I am worthy of love, that I’m worthy of and deserve his love. It’s not just because I do the dishes. We were talking tonight about things, and it was mentioned that we both have money budgeted in such a way that neither of us is struggling on a monthly basis, and that we could assist the other in a pinch. “But we’re not in a relationship,” he mentioned, which was like stabbing me with a knife, albeit a decorative knife which I knew I wanted to keep. But the context was to emphasize that a couple he was referring to was engaged to be wed, and one partner struggled while the other seemed to do fine because they can’t budget financially together. Look what we have here, I thought to myself. But I suppose we only make a good couple on paper, or in theory. His feelings need to be there, not just mine.

After my shower, I crawled into bed and played on my cell phone. I heard a bedroom door open, then the wooden boards of the hallway floor creaked with each step. I figured it was the other housemate, who was in town for the weekend, or her significant other. I figured that whoever it was, the person was going to the bathroom, nothing more, so I minded my own business. I heard a muffled thud as something hit the comforter and my leg beneath it. I looked up, just in time to see the side of J’s face as he walked back to his room. I looked to see what hit me, only to discover it was the fourth 3-novel compilation of the Sweep series by Cate Tiernan, which I started reading about a month ago. I had just finished the third novel in the third book, and thus the entirety of the third book, earlier that day at work. However, I returned that book in the midst of our argument, opening the door just a crack so I could place it on the small bookshelf by the door, then closing the door behind me. I was going to be stubborn and prideful, I was going to start reading some of my other books instead of grabbing the next in the Sweep series. His words were already pulling me out of the mood I was in towards him, but seeing the book on my bed, I couldn’t help but consider him to be thoughtful, like that was the only word coming to mind to describe him.

Over the weekend, we were watching the second to last episode of Iron Fist. As sometimes happens, he couldn’t seem to figure out where to put his hand behind me, or if it should be on my side. So I held it in place over my left shoulder for long enough that the only reason why he moved it was because it wasn’t a comfortable position any longer. I started nodding off during that episode, possibly because a lack of sleep was catching up to me, and just as I had closed my eyes he nudged me awake. Usually he’s the one falling asleep and I try to nudge him, or we both start nodding off. My eyes weren’t closed long enough that I missed anything, so it was nice that he caught me nodding off at that moment.

Yeah, I’m thankful for him. And if I’m smiling more than I think I am, it probably has something to do with his ability to make me smile when I don’t otherwise feel like it.

Torture On Fire

So you know how I stated that living with my unrequited love has been, or would be, torture?

How naive I was to have that thought.

It has been three months since I reluctantly moved in with J, the reluctance stemming from a stressful situation tied to his circle of friends from back in 2011 which lead to an argument that ended in me forcefully being asked to leave the very house I’m now residing within. I don’t know what it was that made him break the silence between us, wordlessly forgiving me despite the fact that I still haven’t exactly apologized for slapping him. I didn’t really want to move in, but I was in a desperate situation where I needed to get out of another friend’s house. I thought I would be in the way, or that I wouldn’t be able to spend any time with him for whatever reason, so I figured I would be using the staircase closest to the kitchen quite often, making something to eat and then just spending my free time reclusively.

I didn’t know that I would remember that I ever had feelings for him once. I forgot so many things about him, about this house. Waking up to the faint melody of an acoustic guitar drifting up the stairway is always welcome, as his musical talents were one of the reasons I fell for him in the first place. His humor was another thing I admired about him, and I often find myself laughing at something he said or something we’ve built up to together. But there’s something about the ah-ha moments, and not just the A-Ha moments when he’s playing an acoustic version of Take On Me, when remembering the past feels no different from learning something new about him.

But in admitting my feelings for him, the feelings I once had and the feelings that redeveloped within me in spite of everything, I was told by him that he doesn’t see me romantically, that at best I am a friend with benefits.

I’ve held on, staying the course. But what course am I on? I’m not on an epic quest to make him love me, and I don’t know if its even possible to make someone see a person romantically if they don’t already. I’ve taken each day as it has come my way. That’s all I believe i can do, anyway.

I’ve allowed myself to be hurt, to be sad or upset, and I’ve expressed my emotions when I’ve felt like I had the right words to do so. At first, J tried to force an explanation out of me when I wasn’t quite ready, which resulted in me writing a lengthy email as I managed to get the thoughts out of my system. Weeks later, he persisted with gentler pestering, hugging me and making jokes until I felt a little more relaxed and willing to release my thoughts. A couple of days ago, he remarked that I seemed like something was wrong, but let it go and I eventually told him what was on my mind. I don’t know if I’m feeling safer with him, or if he realizes that I just need time to process my thoughts sometimes.

But that’s the thing, the last time I was consumed by overthinking my situation, just a few days ago, it was because I’m just a housemate and friend with benefits. His ex is struggling with her current situation, and in my mind, the only way that things would improve for her situation is if she left her current guy and moved out of his place. J has already offered her a room in the house once more, until she found another place, if that did end up being the plan. I don’t know, though. He always seems happier when she’s around, like genuinely happier, and she has said that she misses him. My thinking was that they’d end up back together, to which I asked what would become of him and I.

I would lose the time we spend watching Cougar Town and Iron Fist (our currently viewed shows at the moment), and it would be replaced with Steven Universe which I can’t stand to watch. At least with Cougar Town, I find myself questioning romantic relationships and how people act as couples, or at least how I view myself in relationships.

But I would also lose the time that he and I spend laying side by side in his bed at night, watching an episode of something or part of a comedy special. Wouldn’t I lose that to another girl who might be jealous or possessive and insist upon being next to her man? I’d be at the foot of the bed until I’m dismissed for the night, sent to return to my own bed at the other end of the hallway.

He said my thinking was way off. He said they’re not getting back together. He reminded me of how he was single for two years before he was in a relationship again. He told me that things do get better.

But… he never said that I would find someone.

And as soon as the clouds of my overthinking storm had passed, new clouds rolled in, soft, puffy clouds that were grey enough to cast doubt about whether a new storm was on the way.

I swear he has feelings for me.

The night i got a coworker’s phone number, J was in a less than pleasant mood until after I emailed him and pointed out that he was already getting the best of me. After that, J was much friendlier to me… for about a week or so, before we went back to our regular routine. Probably the one thing I don’t want to do would be to keep getting phone numbers, or getting the attention of new guys, because that’s when this whole thing becomes a game. Sure, I may appear to be desired by other men, but there’s always the possibility that the one I want will give up and look in another direction.

And if I read all those articles that are like Facebook’s version of a supermarket tabloid, it’s easy to believe that he loves me, if not just that he’s fairly into me, but that he surely has some interest no matter what. “Aquarians love their alone time, so if he’s spending a lot of time with you, he’s into you.” Check. “He values your opinion and wants you to make a decision.” Check, maybe not so much with the movies and shows we watch, but I did choose where to get a quick bite to eat on Saturday. I really can’t help that I’m indecisive and indifferent at times. Oh, what else have I read? Because if most of it is to be believed, J is into me.

So then, what is going on?

I’ve started to feel like I should back off, maybe not cuddle with him at night, or stop washing his travel mug, or just opt to do my own thing instead of watching shows with him. I figure that if I start to pull away, my feelings for him will go away, and then I won’t feel like the last person crossing the finish line when he does get into a relationship again. I’ve done a terrible job of trying to do just that. He is too much fun, and as always I try to get a few extra minutes of his time when I can.

I wonder, what is he up to?

It would be easy to say he’s lying and sugarcoating. Maybe he’s not really interested in his ex anymore, but just wants to make sure she’s happy with whatever life does bring. Maybe he just doesn’t want me to be upset until he actually does get back in a relationship with her. It’s really hard to say.

I do wonder if he’s… planning something. You know what I mean. While Thanksgiving is this Thursday, it’s the December holidays that would be really good for… something. Merry Christmas, I’m in a relationship again… that’s the kind of thing I’m thinking. J sitting down with the guitar, starting with a Christmas carol or two before leading into a love song. His hands never leaving the guitar, he dictates to me which gifts I open and in which order, and I scurry over to where they’ve been placed and grab each one that he asks for. The first gift or two are rather trivial, maybe a small bottle of shower gel to get me by until I can liberate my hoard from Bath And Body Works that I have in storage, maybe something else related to video gaming. The next gift is a necklace, something semi-decent, with a star or a moon design to it. I’ll glance at him as if something is wrong, because we’re just friends and I don’t think that calls for nice jewelry. Maybe at this point, unless there’s a nicer gift to be had before his reveal, he will tell me that he does love me, or that he wants me to be his girlfriend, or something like that.

Honestly, I don’t even know if it would be worth it to have to wait until Christmas to be told that he’s actually interested in being my significant other. It’s one thing to have met someone, and constantly wonder for days on end whether or not they’re into you. It’s another thing when you live with the person that your heart seems to call out for, especially after their lips have said they’re not into you in the same way that you’re into them. J will always be here, and as long as I’m here, I will have to deal with my feelings for him.

We’re three months down, living under the same roof. The arguments have been more civilized than anything I’ve had before. The discussions have been more intellectual and interesting as well. I can’t give this up. I feel like we were meant to be.

But I know how that sounds. I’m delusional.

This entry was posted on November 22, 2017, in Uncategorized. Leave a comment

Magic Man

Lately at work, I’ve found it’s impossible for me to get any reading done between calls. It’s not that there are more calls, it’s that I’ve spaced out, my mind has gone elsewhere and I’d forgotten I even had a book or two with me.

In my last haul from the storage unit in New Jersey, I brought one of my reusable grocery bags filled with books, and fortunately this collection contained at least one book that I had started but hadn’t finished. So I forced myself to finish Beauty’s Punishment, the second in Anne Rice’s Sleeping Beauty trilogy. I say that I forced myself to finish it, because when I started it, it was maybe 2011 or 2012 and I had a different mindset in regards to the subject matter of the series and my own experiences with a similar type of lifestyle. While I have the third and final book in the series, and was preparing to complete the story in my mind, J had another idea.

He handed me a book called Sweep, which was a collection of novels by Cate Tiernan, specifically the first three in a series. I suppose I could have chosen not to read it just yet, but J has been eager to know how far I’ve read or where I am in the story, not that his daily probing has been my motivation to turn another page.

It doesn’t take long to realize the series revolves around magic, or rather magick as it uses the other term to denote illusionary feats such as those performed by Siegfried and Roy, for example. More specifically than just magick, it involves the practice of Wicca, citing the various holidays and describing ritual work.

I should have stopped reading. In fact, I questioned J’s intentions for me reading the book. “It’s a good book,” was all he’d reply.

“You know, I’ve never even dabbled in Wicca. I didn’t know if you were trying to convert me or something.”

“Oh,” he said, mildly surprised. “I thought you had. Not trying to convert you, it’s just a  good book.”

I told him about what kept me from Wicca, which was the influence of my parents. I had put it out of my mind, it wasn’t even my thing.

Further into the book, when the morning winds violently shook the tree outside my window, I was reminded of a dream I had one time where strong winds pushed against me but I never fell over or bent to their will. Before I woke up from that dream, I noticed I was grasping something beaded in my right hand. I don’t remember all the symbols in the dream, just that I felt like I had some kind of powers or something, I felt like I was being called towards Wicca or witchcraft or something.

I read through Book Of Shadows, the first of the three books in Sweep, and the further I read into the story, the more I felt like I was being called again to try Wicca. But in the back of my mind, I wondered if I wasn’t just being lured in by a romanticized scenario of some sort, if I wasn’t trying to be the main character Morgan in some way. She pursued Wicca because it called to her, but she also kind of pursued it because of the dreamy witch boy Cal. Would I be pursuing it to feel closer to J?

Book Of Shadows ends on Samhain, but I finished reading it in the early hours of the 31st. It made me contemplate whether or not to take the plunge, or if it would even be acceptable to begin on the day that’s considered to be the New Year. Of course, I have to also keep in mind that the veil between this world and the next is the thinnest on Halloween night, or the night of Samhain, and I have two deceased parents who might still try to make their wishes known.

Well, if I decide to follow the path to Wicca, I have at least two friends who can help me down that path. And if I’m still contemplating whether or not it’s something I should do, there is always J to discuss what comes to mind. And if I decide not to start trying Wicca, it will either be a more educated decision than I could have made years ago, or it will be deep-seeded fear that I can’t get past

I already have the black cat. Being a witch might just be my fate.

A New Challenger Approaches!

One of the perks of my job is the dress code. While there are specific dos and don’ts, it all comes down to wearing whatever you want as long as it offends no one. I have absolutely no problem with jeans and t-shirts every day, especially since I have well over a hundred different shirts to wear.

Yeah, I have too many t-shirts. It’s a problem.

Recently I decided to do a couple of theme days. One day I wore my shirt from the Nintendo store in NYC that had Link next to the name of the company, and with it I wore a necklace of the sword and shield from the Legend Of Zelda series. Another day, I wore one of my Portal necklaces with a shirt that referenced Portal. There was a day that was a bit cloudy, and while it was a stretch and I never got to go all out, I did bring my Umbrella Corp umbrella with me when I wore my Resident Evil 7 shirt.

My most epic theme was wearing my Boston Rad Sox shirt with the hoodie that came in the Fallout crate from Loot Crate, as I usually use the messenger bag that came in that crate as my work bag. That was the day I really got noticed by the new guy. New Guy needs a better name than that… I got nothing.

So following Fallout Day, New Guy starts sitting in cubicles nearby me, or near where I’d likely sit. Well, it’s a small call center, and I don’t like sitting too close to where the supervisors’ station is, nor do I like being by the wall, so that leaves only a few seats to choose from. Also, that’s really easy to mark down as coincidence. What isn’t coincidence is when it’s Sunday, and there’s only a handful of people in the center, and he still decides to sit next to me. Or when it’s Monday, today, and the call center is packed, and he somehow manages to be available when the cubicle next to me has been freed up, and so he sits there next to me. That’s not coincidence.

We had been chatting about video games, so Friday I did the safe thing and asked for his Playstation Network ID. He wrote it down, and I brought it home and told J all about it. When I tried searching for the ID, the one that matched what I had typed in said that the player was from France and spoke French. Okay, so maybe I misread what he had written, and I tried another set of keystrokes. That player spoke Portuguese, so I knew that wasn’t New Guy either. By Saturday, I was thinking that maybe he was trying to misdirect me, so I figured I’d just say I forgot to try searching for his player ID or something like that. Finally it dawned on me what the letter was that I kept assuming was something else, and I did manage to locate his ID by Saturday night. I know it was his ID, because the last played game was a new game he just bought. It HAD to be his ID. And sure enough, he sent a message with my operator number in it, which only confirmed that I finally had the right one.

Sunday was slow, and I was asked if I wanted to leave early. Honestly, no I didn’t, as New Guy and I were deep in conversation, but it would mean having to take more phone calls. I took my leave, but before I went, New Guy asked for a piece of paper. He told me it was nothing weird, or not meant to be, as he wrote his number on that piece of paper. I got that boy’s phone number.

I was beaming all the way to the bank! No, really, I had to stop by the bank so I could pull out some money to put towards rent. But then I was beaming all the way home! I hadn’t even taken off my boots when I sat down on the couch to tell J all about it. Usually when I get a guy’s phone number, it’s completely unwanted, as I have absolutely no interest in the guy whatsoever. But New Guy seems interesting, or at least we get along well.

J had spent the day fighting zombies in Dying Light, on the hardest difficulty setting. After I got home and told him about my luck, he vacuumed the carpet beneath his computer chair. I was analyzing the situation, asking J what his thoughts were, trying to get some idea of how I should proceed in this situation. I mean, this isn’t something that often happens with me, in fact it really doesn’t happen with me, at least not often enough that I should know what to do. But all I got from J was for him to say “I’m not the one to ask,” in regards to the fact that he’s more introverted and especially shy in such situations.

He seemed… tense, moody,… I don’t know, but something was off. I tried asking him about it, but either he didn’t hear me or he acted like he was focused elsewhere. I did what any girl would do, and I spoke to another girl, this one being the other tenant in the house who was away for business. I asked her how J talks about me, if he does, when I’m not around to hear it. The conversation gave me the insight I needed, as I decided to write an email to J.

Long story short, I stayed up until 4 am stringing together phrases to say “I know you feel something for me; just admit it already.” By lunchtime, the response I got from J was “I am happy that the guy might be interested in you. You deserve to be happy.” I poured my heart out, admitted I’d choose J over New Guy, and after he said that I felt kinda lousy. I told him I hoped he wasn’t holding back, because I had this image in my head of a guy telling himself how it could’ve been him, but the girl seemed so happy so he backed off. He claimed he wasn’t holding back. I told him I hoped that was true, because he was less playful and I could tell that something was up.

After work today, we plunked down in our chairs to play video games. He asked if there was anything I needed before he put on his noise canceling headphones to be in chat, and I dramatically requested, “love me!”

“Too late,” came his reply.

“Now, something like that doesn’t have an expiration date,” I countered, but I was cut off before I could explain myself further.

“You’re overcomplicating it,” he told me, then wiggled his index finger in a come hither motion. When I was within arms’ reach, he pulled me close and gave his explanation: “I already heart you.”

The evening seemed to play out as usual, although my phone was a bit more active in regards to incoming texts. And yet, it feels like J and I grew closer.

What will I do about New Guy? I’m thinking I might try the polyamory thing. I don’t know if New Guy will do polyamory, but I feel like not giving it a shot would be a missed opportunity. If J remembers that I come home to him regardless, then maybe this will work. Maybe.

If not, then we pick up the pieces, we see what worked, and we move on from there. That’s what we do around here.

This entry was posted on October 24, 2017, in Uncategorized. Leave a comment

Love & War

Talking about my arguments with people, no matter how petty the argument, is really not something I want to do here. It’s far too easy to put someone in a negative light, especially because I’m going to be biased towards myself since I understand my side of the argument before I’d even consider if the other side has a valid argument.

So of course I’m going to talk about an argument I had.

I mean, it wasn’t the first one, and it certainly won’t be the last argument I’ll have with J. This argument was more situational and in the moment, instead of being the result of built-up stress and what not.

Okay, so, it was nighttime, everyone was tired, it had been a long day by that point. A friend of his had stopped by, then a friend of mine said she was in the area so I convinced her to visit me. His friend left first, at which point I was a little more comfortable to bring out a side of myself that J and my friend were both used to. One thing lead to another, and I was hit on the head with a piece of wood about a half inch thick.

For me, thats when the fun ended, that very moment that I was hit on the head. I wasn’t really hit, per se, it was the force of gravity on a heavy object which collided with the top of my skull. But it hurt, oh god did it hurt, maybe not like getting hit by a bus or something like that, but certainly more than if that wooden object had collided with a more padded area of my body.

I expected an ounce of concern, someone to ask if I was all right. When I didn’t get that, at least in any form that felt satisfactory, I felt myself losing control of the situation. I abruptly hugged my friend and bid her goodnight before I headed up the stairs and went to my room. J spoke to my friend for a bit before she departed, then he came upstairs.

And that’s when the fight began.

I don’t even remember his first words. I just remember his next words were louder than the ones before. I left my room and walked down the hallway towards his room, and I stood outside while we went back and forth. Every so often, I somehow managed to inch myself closer to his room, to the point where I could feel his soft plush carpeting beneath my toes, a stark contrast to the painted wood in the hallway. Part of me wanted to be in his room, to cuddle beside him on his bed for a little while, but that would mean putting this argument behind us.

And he wasn’t budging. He complained about how I treated my friend. He complained about my actions in general. He claimed he apologized to me after I was bonked on the head, but I never heard it. The longer I stood there, the longer we fought, the more it seemed I should be remorseful. Unfortunately, remorse seemed to contradict everything I knew and felt to be true, that all of this started because I was in pain from being hit on the head and no one cared that I was hurting. And it added emotional pain to the physical pain I felt, and I couldn’t seem to get that through to him.

At one point I stood there in silence, just staring at him. He asked me if there was something I wanted to say, or if something was on my mind, something along those lines. I could feel my lip quivering; could he see that? At that moment, I wanted a kiss, didn’t matter if it was on the lips, the cheek, the forehead, or the top of my head where I got hit. I just wanted a kiss from him. I wanted this argument to be over, I wanted to be in his arms.

I wanted to feel safe with him again.

He sent me downstairs because I left a light on, at which point he slammed his door. That was the end, no more arguing.

I turned off the light. I remembered I had started to wash his coffee cup and lunch container while my friend was visiting, so despite being angry with him, I finished my cleaning duty. Not that it was really my cleaning duty; he never asked me to do it, and I just started doing it because it caught him off-guard to see it already done. More than that, doing things for someone is one of my love languages, which I did mention to him a few days prior. But I had debated whether or not to finish washing his cup and container, as leaving it unfinished felt like I’d be sending a message, not that I forgot or didn’t have a moment to start washing it, but that it didn’t matter enough to me to complete the task that wouldn’t even take five minutes. But yes, I finished cleaning the cup and container, then told myself it would be the last time, that I was done.

I came back upstairs and got into bed, however I had chained the door when I was downstairs. The other tenant, who spends most of her time away from here because of work, was going to arrive in the middle of the night. I got out of bed, crept down the servants steps so as to not be obvious that I was going downstairs again, and I unchained the front door. I noticed that my Mom’s guitar was still sitting on the couch, because I had taken it out of its case and we were playing it, so I put it back into its case and onto the guitar stand. I told myself I’d bring the guitar and stand upstairs the next day, that I’d figure out where to put it in my room.

I returned to the upstairs once more and climbed back into bed. Sleep was intermittent, and it seemed I woke up about every hour or two. At 5 in the morning, my bladder insisted that I got out of bed, so I crossed the hall to do my business and then came back to bed. However, J wakes up around 5 to get ready for work, and for the next two hours I was treated to the delightful sounds and aromas that go along with starting the day. I pulled the covers over my head, shutting out even the melodies being played on the guitar which I normally would have tuned into by moving closer to the source. I must have fallen asleep, because it was after 8 when I looked at the clock again, and then it was around 10 when I finally got out of bed.

I took a shower. I got dressed. I did the litter pan. It was at least 12:30 by the time I went downstairs, and by that point I was already thinking about what I was going to do with my day so that more of my things would be out of his sight, and what I would do with myself so I didn’t have to see or deal with him. I was sad, possibly even depressed, I wasn’t moving quickly at all. I grabbed a stack of crackers I had near the sofa, and then returned them to the kitchen. Wow, one item moved at a snail’s pace.

As I walked into the kitchen, I noticed there was something written on the note magnet where I jot down my schedule. Ah, I’d have to remove that magnet, because he’d see it and think of me. And yet…

“Crazy Lady, Thanks for washing my cup and bento set. Have a good day. J.”

I cried. He never really thanked me for washing his stuff before, at least not like that. And calling me Crazy Lady was a term of endearment, it wasn’t as if to say I was being crazy. Suddenly, I didn’t know how to go about my day.

I made a trip to the Korean bakery. It was payday, and J never stops there no matter how many times I’ve suggested he should go with me. After getting a few things, I walked to the Asian market nearby. I wasn’t there for too long, when I had the idea that I should make miso soup. J has said he likes miso soup, which doesn’t surprise me based on the instant packets of the stuff that linger in the pantry. However, I’ve never made miso soup from scratch, and already I was making it for someone else’s approval… if I decided to go through with it. I returned to the house and put away my food purchases, as I had perishable items, and time to kill if I was thinking about going out to eat dinner.

The fondue restaurant in the mall had a Thursday night Ladies Night special, so I decided I’d treat myself. As I was waiting for my appetizer of cheese fondue, I got a text from J asking if I’d be willing to chat with him while he was on his commute back home. I had my headphones, I could have taken a call and still had my hands free, but I knew his commute was an hour long and I knew I’d be spending most of my dinner time being the rude customer on the phone. I texted him back and said I was “out and about,” and that I would talk when I got home.

At first, it was if nothing had changed between us, it was like normal. Sometime later, I said to J what I had realized earlier that day, that if he had just kissed me on the head where I got hit, I would have been fine, I would have been better, and it might have saved a lot of arguing. About a minute or later, he did kiss me on the top of the head. I looked at the clock that was in my sight and noted the time.

“Well that was 23 hours too late,” I told him.

“No it wasn’t. I was at work for about 8 hours, slept for about 6 or 7,… really it was only about 2 or 3 hours late.”

“Mmhmm…” I smirked.

When I asked what possessed him to write me the thank you note, he said that normally he’s scatterbrained and forgets to say something. I find it a bit hard to believe that he forgets anything, as he’s admitted he can recite movies verbatim after seeing them only two or three times, and he remembered more details about our fight from 2011 than I had even recalled. So I wonder if he noticed that I hadn’t finished washing his things, as he’s actually good at noticing things for a guy, and then it meant a lot to him that I finished doing the job despite having argued with him. But I’m a hopeless romantic, so we’ll just take his words at face value and I’ll stop deluding myself.

Because remember, J isn’t interested in me romantically.

Which I don’t think is entirely true. I’ve been listening to The Beatles’ If I Fall a few times since J played it “for me.” It’s a song about being cautious in regards to falling in love, not wanting it to be in vain but wanting to go all-in if the love is actually reciprocated. Today I had the option to choose a song, but I told him that it was his choice instead, so he played yet another song I’ve never heard before, Save You by Matthew Perryman Jones. It’s a song about being in two states of being, or having to decide between two things, and the singer is asking the listener to make the decision for him, asking, “wouldn’t that save you?” Sometime prior, he played Audioslave’s “I Am The Highway,” a song that suggests the singer is more than he’s being viewed as by a partner, that he’s not just one of many things that come around again but instead he is something greater that’s always there when everything else moves along. I know I’m looking into it too much, but J seems cautious, conflicted, and he wants to be everything to… someone. Let’s not get our hopes up, because I do want to see him happy with someone. And I always feel like he’s happier to be around his ex when she stops by, or at least that he doesn’t look at me the same way he looks at her,

Regardless, I know not what the future holds. I do know he had me try on a mens’ fleece jacket when we were shopping about two weeks ago, and only recently did I consider the possibility that he did that as a means of sizing me to buy me a jacket of some sort. And this was after looking at leather jackets and discussing what we liked about different styles. There was a significant lean towards the idea of me wearing a jacket like the one Jessica Jones wears on the popular Netflix show, so I wonder if that’s going to happen. Of course, that all came before I fell in love with a leather jacket that had a dragon embroidered on the back, when I was already telling myself I didn’t need any more jackets.

Ah, well, as it usually goes with me, it’s now his move. Let’s see how things play out. At least our arguments are getting more civilized, so maybe things will work out favorably.

Imprisoned By Hope For Revealing All

Sometimes it’s difficult to be around people in a social setting. Put a bunch of introverts in a room together, throw in an ambivert who is already walking on eggshells after the last time she met one of your… close friends… and see who lasts the longest. It’s bound to write a few stories for itself.

J and I were invited to celebrate the birthday of an ex and former housemate, the girl who occupied the room I’m currently staying in. While I know the girl from seeing her at work and when she stops by the house, the only other persons I knew at the party besides J was another coworker who I’ve known a couple of months now but whose sister I’ve known for 12 years. Needless to say, I was closest to J out of everyone there.

The problem is, in my head I had to keep things from looking like we had gotten too close and personal and whatever else. The girl whose sister I’ve known for 12 years, I’ve talked about J in front of her to the point where she considers me to be obsessed with him, when he’s the one person I socialize with the most because it’s kind of hard not to do so. Not to mention, I don’t know what’s under the surface between J and the birthday girl, and I know he’s not mine and won’t be. But I have bad memories of just walking into J’s house and being silently hated because we could play off each other’s humor and knowledge of movie quotes. That might have been then and not now, and her and not any of the guests, but it’s hard to know what I might face.

I ended up forgetting myself, or at least I ended up feeling safe around these people for the most part. I did feel uncomfortable around one woman, which I discussed with J after we left the party, to which he said that it was just because I was a new person to the woman. I’ll admit, I wasn’t shy despite what might be inferred up to this point, but I did hold back a couple of times “because I knew better” even though no one may have really cared. But that’s no big deal.

J brought his acoustic guitar to the party, because he knew that he’d be asked to play if he brought it, or someone might ask why he didn’t bring it at all. He played a few songs, and while I listened intently at first, I found myself wanting to focus on something else, anything else. I saw the birthday girl’s dreamy smile, I saw J’s focus on making sure she was pleased.

I saw myself back in 2007, sitting on the couch while a guy played acoustic guitar before me. Oh how I wished my delusion was the reality, that he loved me and played for me. I was already bouncing around a certain phrase in my head, about how “the guitar is never played for me,” and it wasn’t hard to see that the phrase was more true than ever.

The problem is, I couldn’t leave the party. I came with J in his SUV, so I couldn’t excuse myself because I had a day shift the next morning or feign exhaustion from already working that day. So I played games on my cell phone for a while, which thankfully didn’t deplete the battery or else someone might argue that I shouldn’t have been using it excessively if I wanted to keep the battery charged. Eventually, though, we did leave, and yes we were the last ones to leave the party. In a way I actually felt guilty that he had to leave, because I felt like he might have stayed longer if it wasn’t for me having to work, but he was actually getting tired at that point.

When we got back to the house, I wasn’t myself. My thoughts had consumed me for the evening, but it was nothing I could tell J. After all, my line of thinking looped through 2011 with J, before coming back to the present date with J, and included other guitarists and people in my life. J tried everything to coerce me into talking about what was on my mind, but I resisted everything he tried. I would have rather died than to give him even a short answer that might suggest I was jealous or something, and that’s exactly what I thought would happen if I gave up any part of what was on my mind. I agreed to emailing him, though, which I started working on immediately instead of watching something with him before bed.

The email was rather emotional for me, and I cried before I ended it. Honestly, I’m still wondering how fate brought me back here, because I said I felt like I should be chasing some other guitarist and repeating my cycle where his interest is in another girl and not me. I expected J to review my actions and suggested what I should have done back then, or something. I didn’t expect for him to shrug it all off and just say something about how I’m allowed to have feelings and emotions and the like. But that’s all he did, he allowed me to have the emotions that I had felt or was feeling.

I guess that was better than being reminded of how foolish I was back then and through the years. Mind you, I was, but let’s not think about that.

Fast forward to Wednesday morning.

I had a day shift, the first in a few days, so I kind of wanted to see J before he left for work. The house was quiet except for the floorboards I couldn’t help but creak as I walked. I was at the top of the stairs when I heard him pick up the guitar and start to play. He played two Beatles songs, And I Love Her and If I Fell, started to play a Billy Joel song which he stopped because it didn’t seem to sound right to him, and then played the theme song to True Blood, Bad Things by Jace Everett.

After he finished, he asked for my opinion. Then he said, “Now you can’t say that no one has plan guitar for you.”

“Yeah, but…” I protested before I was cut off.

“Ah, no,” he said to me, holding up a finger to silence me. Anytime I tried to make sure that he understood that I was talking about a guy playing guitar for me because he was interested in me romantically, he didn’t want to hear it.

I spent the whole work day wondering if that’s what it was, if he was subtly interested in my romantically and has been trying, here and there, to get me to reveal things about myself. It wouldn’t surprise me; he already suggested that he would get information from me by sneaking questions and certain statements into conversation. The problem is that I speak before I even think, which takes away the challenge of actually trying to figure me out.

Take, for example, last week’s shopping excursion. We poked around a discount store, checking out books instead of just going straight for the bed sheets which was our reason for going. First, we had to drive past a guitar store before parking in front of the discount store, which got him on the topic of what date nights with him consist of. So while looking at books in the discount store, he was telling me about this girl he dated, who he took to a retail chain bookstore, and they had nothing in common in regards to the kinds of books they’d read. “And she would read historical dramas and nonfiction,” he told me.

What did I do? But of course, I told him that I read sci-fi, fantasy, some new age stuff (I have dream dictionaries and tarot guides),… and romance and erotica. Did I need to mention what I’m into? No, it just seemed appropriate for some reason.

Ah, let’s not get our hopes up. He said he wasn’t interested in me romantically. It’s just as well; things seem really good between us, and he’s the kind of guy I’d rather have instead of the kinds of guys I’ve dated. so I’m probably not meant to have him. That doesn’t mean I won’t make the most of the time I have with him, but I know my place will be housemate until I move out, and that’s all.