I awoke with my alarm at 4am with the words “te quiero mucho” (I like you a lot) repeating themselves in my head. It was like a song that gets in your head only more upsetting because those were the last words Diego texted me before I went to sleep. I had meant to get up and meditate. But the room was cold the floor was colder. I decided to meditate in bed. That wasn’t the best idea because I kept falling back asleep. It took me longer than it should have to get myself vertical. I didn’t have time to take a shower or clean the cat pee that accumulated on the bathroom floor. I just had time to dress, sort of eat, feed my cats, and pack my bag.
I had decided not to let Diego influence my habits and chose to go to the same train station. I got there with 5 minutes to spare, but there was a long line at the ticket counter. By the time I had purchased my monthly ticket, I had just missed my train. I had no choice but to take the same one as Diego. He sat with me and acted no differently. He held my hand to warm it up. He talked of buying me heated gloves because my hands are always cold. He even made a few kissy faces at me. I found myself on the verge of tears. Again. I didn’t understand what he was doing. Why was he behaving this way? We also had some normal conversation. They had just deported a number of immigrants who entered this country in 2014. He said sometimes they don’t even check people’s papers to see if they’re here legally and are returned to their country in handcuffs. We discussed that for a while, but he was still very friendly with me.
After we got off at the connecting station, he gave me our usual hug and cheek kiss and said he wanted to see me tonight after work. He asked if I wanted to see him too. I said I did, but that it was complicated. He left and I waited for my next train. I received several texts from him. He said that he liked me a lot. That he wants to see me every day. That he thinks I don’t want to. That last night he was sad to be alone. That talking with me makes him happy. I told him I like him a lot too and asked what the problem was. He said he has fear that I would suffer because of who he is. I did not respond after that.
I was surprisingly okay once I got to work. I was able to smile at my students, teach them well, and was in a surprisingly decent mood. Then I received a text from him stating that he did not want to marry me. Then it all came out. He was mistaken by our conversation about marriage. He thought I wanted to get married soon. That still didn’t explain why he said he wasn’t capable of love, unless it was a reaction to the inaccurate thought that I wanted to marry him soon. It seemed like this whole thing was just a misunderstanding that probably stemmed from a mistranslation. We had just reached that conclusion when he had to return to work.
I should have been overjoyed, but I didn’t trust the situation. I didn’t want to get my hopes up just to have the situation backfire. He said we would talk a lot more after work.
I was on the earliest train I could catch on my way home from work. I just wanted to get home. Maybe clean a bit because my apartment was pretty gross. I got a text from Diego. He was on the train right after mine. I wanted to finish our conversation and it really was too cold to walk outside. His train was only 10 minutes after mine. I thought that maybe we could finish that conversation We sat in my car on the side of the road outside his place talking for close to 2 hours. Much of it had nothing to do with our relationship. But I finally figured out what the problem was. According to the Google translator both “te quiero mucho” and “te amo” means “I love you”. “Te quiero mucho” literally translates to “I want you a lot” and seems to mean “I like you a lot”. Well, Diego finally explained to me in a way that made sense that “te amo” is something you only say if you want to marry the person and will feel that way about them the rest of your life. It seems like the American “I love you” is in between the two, at least in my experience. No wonder he said he was incapable of loving me like that after less than two months! And that explains why he thought I wanted to marry him, like soon! While, in the past, I resolved never to say, “I’m fine, it’s nothing,” in that female way when asked what is wrong. But in cases like these, for the sake of the relationship, maybe it is better that way!
I got home too late to get a full 8 hours of sleep. I messaged the few people who I had confided in to tell them everything was fine. Even so, I didn’t quite feel the happiness and relief I had expected to accompany this realization. Maybe after a good night’s sleep, my mood would improve.
Today I gave up on trying to avoid Diego and faced the situation, as painful as it may have been.
Today I’m grateful for being able to find solace in my work, that it seems things with Diego were a misunderstanding, and that we eventually worked things out.
I did no kindnesses that I could think of.
I spent 30 minutes in nature.
I spent about $5.75 on parking and $5 on food.
I slept for about 7 hours last night.
I meditated for 10 minutes today.
I exercised for 30 minutes today.
I did not follow my diet today.
I did not clean or straighten today.
I was not showered and did not brush my teeth today.
I started the day in a depression and managed to pull myself out of it. I wasn’t happy, but I was content. My temperament was good.