I’m hard pressed to think any man could get my emotional fires burning right now.
Not even Kyle, who I am trying to exorcise but who still surfaces in my thoughts on a regular basis.
Not even Tony, in the never-going-to-happen scenario of his coming to me, divorce papers in hand.
So certainly not Alan or Leo, who are lovely and kind and persistent but not annoyingly so. Alan heard me loud and clear when I told him I need to go slow and I wasn’t ready to be exclusive. He still sends long texts about how he’s going to persist and “wear me down”. Could be creepy in another context but so far it hasn’t weirded me out – too much.
I can’t even work up that much excitement about going to New York City in a few weeks. I’m going to see some friends who I hold dear, and Todd is taking me out dancing in Harlem; exactly the experience I’ve asked for. A dark, grinding, sexy dance floor experience.
Okay, maybe that gets me a little excited.
But I simply can’t find the energy to get worked up about any men in my life these days. It’s not them; it’s me.
I have cultivated the “I don’t give a shit” attitude I craved a couple of years ago. Don’t text me for 24 hours? It may cross my mind, but even if it does, I don’t care. In some ways I’m relieved to not have to engage, to put an effort in, to pretend to care.
When I got a “confession: I’m getting excited” text from Todd, something which normally would prompt those little butterflies to dance in my gut, my reaction was 10% of that.
It’s been building for a while, this state of being. February; my experience with HWSNBN and his abuse. Hy reminded me it wouldn’t have mattered how fast or slow I went; he was crazy. But I have a hard time separating those facts.
Coming back to dating after a couple of months just to experience the bullshit of a few.
And then, of course, the long goodbye with Tony.
My heart and my mind are exhausted.
My Mom says I’m vulnerable to letting Tony back in (clearly: I’ve never tried to argue anything different) or to letting Alan wear me down. The former is more likely than the latter. I am not going to say yes to exclusivity or being a girlfriend if I’m not feeling it. I will not do it just because it seems like the polite or right thing to do. I’ve done it before; it doesn’t end well for me.
And while I don’t think I will let Tony back in like I have in the past, I know it would be hard to resist seeing him if he came asking.
I do know, no question, that seeing him once is not the same as letting the floodgates open. (And no, I’m not opening that mental door or preparing y’all for some subsequent post).
I don’t feel empty – in contrast, I feel rather full. Full of work insanity and time with the kid and being there for my friends in crisis. Full of time to write, and time to read the backlog of magazines on my coffee table, and time to watch the first season of “The Crown” on Netflix. Full of sessions with my personal trainer and purging my closets of things I don’t need. I don’t have enough time to see all my friends, so I’m hardly worried about becoming a crazy cat lady.
I have reached peak chill while at the same time feel profound sadness in my heart. I guess that’s what heartbreak does. I can’t fuck it away or date it away. I’m not trying to, although I appreciate those moments with Lewis when I can think of nothing and am lost in the feeling of my body heave and shudder and give in to his poundings.
I am not dead inside; there are fires burning away. I’m passionate about work and laugh with the kid and cry with my friends. Alan makes me feel nice. He’s been sweet and sexy and I have no reason to stop seeing him. Leo and I haven’t see each other since he asked about my being his girlfriend. I told him I wasn’t in a great place to be practically or emotionally available – and he said he would be patient and available when I was.
It’s a sweet sentiment. I have no idea how long he will be waiting.
All pictures from the Leo posts are from the 1962 film “Phaedra”