Shockingly, the date Bruce and I planned…happened. Having low expectations is sometimes a wonderful thing. And even though we met, I didn’t expect anything to continue afterward.
I’ve been surprised twice now.
We set a weekday night to meet when he was working in the city and I didn’t have Liam. Given past experience, I fully expected something to happen with his work schedule or children. In the past, sometimes he wouldn’t proactively tell me he needed to cancel – I would check in and he’d tell me he was already on his way home, having to now drive a colleague or some other thing.
A couple of months ago I’d connected with Bruce again. Probably because I’d texted to see how he was doing. He suggested we get together and then cancelled that day due to a change in his child schedule. It told me nothing had changed with him and there was no point in trying.
We exchanged no texts afterwards. But feeling magnanimous, I sent him a Merry Christmas and happy holidays text. He didn’t reply. Ever.
So in the last purge I sent him a goodbye text. I said I wasn’t sure why he didn’t reply, but I didn’t want to bother him and guessed he may be seeing someone else (it didn’t fit for me that he didn’t reply at all and realized perhaps he didn’t want to tell me).
I told him I had a dating story about us published in a local newspaper and would share it if he wanted to read it. It was the story of me mistakenly calling his wife. I said I wished him the best. Did I need to send it? Nope. But I did.
I then deleted him from my address book, my recents (sidebar: I found men in my recents I haven’t been in touch with for over four years. Recent, my ass!), and WhatsApp. It took a few tries to completely get him out of my phone. I didn’t want to have a weak moment again and reach out – I figured he’d made his lack of interest very clear.
I moved on.
At work yesterday I noticed a bunch of WhatsApp notifications. It didn’t say who they were from, because my phone didn’t know. I figured it was the group chat I have with my brother and others where it’s common for me to have 47 unread messages if they’ve been debating the merits of a certain restaurants saag paneer.
Later when I opened it I saw the following:
Hey Ann sorry
No you’re not bothering me
I would block you if that was the case
Just been dealing with a lot of shit …
I’ve been really …. I don’t know
Depressed I guess is the best way to put it
I mean just being brought to tears for …. no real reason… while at work
Laying in bed at home …
Try to put on a good face for the kids but …. it’s been tough
And …. I don’t know I became a recluse.
Thanks for thinking of me.
Ps it always make me feel horrible when we try to get together and something always comes up… like seriously
I hate that
You have been nothing short of wonderful
And I feel like shit and end up ignoring people because I have nothing positive going on so it’s easier to keep that to myself.
Hope you are well sweetie
And yes if you send me the link to your story …
I’d love to read it
Can’t imagine it’s too positive lol
That was the first ” booty call” I was ever offered
And yet couldn’t man up
It was Bruce.
I responded that it was nice to hear from him and I was sorry he was going through such a rough time. I knew from prior discussions he suffered from anxiety and depression, and I know how debilitating it can be from my relationship with Will.
He said he’d like to see me. He’s been the funny and sarcastic guy I liked so much. We have plans set for later this week and I’m not holding my breath. Even if we do see each other, I have no illusions it will be anything more than a one-time thing.
But at least it’s nice to know it wasn’t about me, at all.
He was a friend, admirer, and protector. Never a lover. He was like the older brother I never had.
A decade-plus older with way more work experience, he was one of the first colleagues to help me understand how good of a leader I actually am. He was crusty and opinionated but looked up to me. As an independent contractor he could work with anyone, and he chose to work for me. I was humbled by his praise.
I was blessed by his presence in my life.
During one of the projects we worked together on he took a pastry course. We all looked forward to Wednesday mornings when the treats would arrive. Never fully satisfied with his work, he rebuffed our compliments, said through stuffed mouths. He always showed up on time to my parties. He was single the whole time I knew him and at first I assumed he was gay. Turned out after his last long-term relationship he’d tired of trying, and spent his time doting on his nieces and nephews. But he always had relationship advice for me.
He was the one who called me the day after my party, where HWSNBN lost his shit, to make sure I was okay. He made me promise to end it and offered to do anything I needed to keep me safe.
At my party, HWSNBN had told him to “fuck off” after he made a nice comment about my legs. Blind with jealousy, HWSNBN couldn’t see the friendship and teasing behind the comment. And his anger at my friend helped cement his demise. No asshole was going to come between me and the people I choose to surround myself with.
The last time I saw him he sat in one of my comfy chairs, joked about my cast, then quietly disclosed his recent absence from my life was due to depression, not a physical illness as I’d feared. He was starting to realize it was okay to share, but knew his pride and stubborn nature got in the way.
We promised to see each other soon.
That was February.
And now I mourn the loss. His death was sudden and unexpected, and a reminder to try to live every day as if it was not only my last day, but my friends and family’s as well.
There’s been enough drama with Leo that I haven’t written about my injury and recovery lately.
The combination of a broken bone and extensive ligament damage means it’s been a long haul. Over two months in a non weight-bearing cast, then a month in a walking boot. I have a plate and several screws in my leg and I have a beautiful 5″ scar on the outside of my ankle.
I still walk with pain and with a limp, and because of that limp I have pain in my tailbone, which fucking sucks. My ankle and foot remain swollen and it could be the same for many more months. I’ve just been diagnosed with needing two months of physiotherapy, 3-5 times a week. How I’m going to find time for that I have no idea. Continue reading →
He wanted to move to the other side of the world again. Some of you may remember he moved away a year after he and I split up and was gone for ten months, leaving me as a single parent to an angry little boy. It was during that time I met Tony. Continue reading →
Health issues, divorce, change in child arrangements, job loss, relationship challenges, and now…
…dealing with parental financial issues.
Really? Haven’t I proven a high degree already of change resilience?
Long story short, my Mother and Step-Father were well set up for retirement a decade ago, having sold their business, paid off their mortgage, and living simply with a focus on experiences, including travel.
Then the 2008 financial crises happened, and my Step-Dad, who managed their investments, managed to lose ALL of their savings. Literally. All. Of. Their. Savings. Okay, well, perhaps they had $30,000 left. Continue reading →
The light of my life returned to the house yesterday before dinner. He wanted to play on his iPad and all I wanted to do was drink up his delicious almost-seven-awesomeness. We managed a decent balance of both.
I recognize depression and sadness in me. It doesn’t happen very often, but I suppose it’s quite normal for it to occur every once in a while. I didn’t leave the house from my arrival on Saturday afternoon until Liam and I walked to get groceries for yesterday’s dinner. At least I managed to shower. I am profoundly sad. I know it will pass.
I exchanged perhaps 4 text messages with Tony in the last 48 hours. He had his child all weekend. Thursday’s invitation is still out there – I suppose I will hear from him at some point today to tell me if he can go. It’s hard to have a serious relationship conversation with someone when they don’t contact you. Continue reading →
Yup, while I’m working on thinking about what I’m thankful for this week, right now I just feel…a whole lot of nothing.
The morning I chose to go to work a bit late, so instead of jumping out of bed first thing, cuddling with my son and reading a book together.
Laughing until I cried with one of my employees, about something I can’t even remember anymore.
Giving an amazing presentation on the strategy for my new department.
Being told I was “smart and hot”.
Enjoying the delight and anticipation a friend is feeling about a potential new lover.
Reaching 500 followers on this here blog.
Having a few close friends proactively reach out to make sure I am okay.
Hanging out in the schoolyard on Friday with other parents while my son was at a sports practice, and getting the guts up to ask a fellow single parent whether he contacted my friend Katharine after they hooked up (yes, I knew he didn’t…and I enjoyed on her behalf listening to him try to explain why).
Thinking my furnace was broken, but it’s producing heat at the moment. Okay, that’s perhaps a stretch, but not adding to my list of things to do is a really good thing.