I awoke a little before 4am. I tried for the next hour and a half to get back to sleep, but it just didn’t work. I kept analyzing things with Carl, trying to figure out the warning signs that this was likely to happen. But there really weren’t any, except at the end. I finally resigned myself, got up, packed, and decided to just start driving. It was better than just sitting around my apartment waiting. As I drove, I thought a little about Carl, but mostly focused on my audio book. At this point, there was a small amount of emotional pain and the general conviction that he didn’t even have the balls to tell me the truth. I started being able to finally convince myself that he was unworthy of my time. I also realized that the way he was behaving, it was a rebound for him. The signs are pretty clear. Sudden, strong emotional attachment at the beginning, then fades quickly and within a month or two (two seems to be the maximum for rebounds).
I was going to be staying, not exactly with friends, but with a previous employer who thinks of herself as a friend. Her name is Sarah. She had a death in the family, so she had to go away for a few days for the wake and the funeral. I had spoken to her and she had told her husband, Larry, to expect me around 3pm. Because I got up and left so early, I would be significantly earlier than that. I decided to drive to Kyle’s first. I figured he wasn’t up yet, so I left him a message stating that I would be up earlier and asked if he wanted to hang out earlier than we had planned. Then I would drive with him to meet Larry at 3:00. I finally heard back from Kyle when I was about an hour away. He had some stuff he needed to do around his house, so he told me to come at 2:00. That gave me two hours to kill. I took naps in gas station parking lots. I ordered (and ate) some random foods that looked interesting at a restaurant. I chatted with that guy from that dating website, Henry. Somehow, I made the time pass.
Two o’clock rolled around and I picked up Kyle. He looked different somehow. Yeah, he’s still overweight, which isn’t an insurmountable turn-off, but there was something different in his face that seemed more appealing (warning sign #1). I just resolved to be more watchful of my feelings. We met Larry who apparently was never informed about the 3:00 time. I introduced him to Kyle and he took us on a tour of their house and grounds. They owned a lot of woods, so this took a significant amount of time. The woods ended in a small river (or a large stream). We went swimming together. It felt like we were on vacation. It was great!!! Kyle and I went back to the guest house to change clothes and dry off. We both just undressed in front of each other like it didn’t matter. Then we curled up in our comfy dry clothes and cuddled on the bed. The guest house was small and had little adornment, save one phrase painted on wood and hung on the wall, “follow your heart”. Maybe because it was the only one, it felt prophetic (warning sign #2).
We cuddled for a long time and talked. We talked about many things. It becomes increasingly amazing how much alike we were in so many things. The only thing that’s really different is our temperament. I am usually incapable of getting angry and he has a bit of an anger problem. But he deals with it in the right way. He feels the anger, but he doesn’t react to it, so he doesn’t do or say mean or hurtful things. We shifted cuddling positions and sex became more of an interest than talking. When we kissed this time, there was an energy to it that made me enjoy his kisses this time (warning sign #3). We had sex this time. It wasn’t great, but I greatly enjoyed the buildup to it. Most people aren’t that great the first time with a new person. It’s always a matter of getting to know what the other person likes. Carl was the exception, but he was clearly deficient in other, more necessary things.
When we were done, we cuddled some more and talked about what we were going to do next. It was getting late, so he suggested food. Then he asked me if I would go out to dinner and a movie with him. Like a date. I said no and offered to go as friends. There were so many reasons I said no and none of them were a problem with him as a person. I was afraid that I would use him as a rebound, hurt him, and lose his friendship. I was afraid that things wouldn’t be able to work between us with him living so far away. I was afraid that 7 years is an awfully large age gap, especially since he’s the younger one. I was afraid that maybe he wasn’t quite over his ex and was using me as a rebound. I was afraid that we were too much alike, that because we have the same flaws, it would be a bad thing to see what we dislike most about ourselves in our partner. But I couldn’t put all of this into words in that point in time. I told him it wasn’t about him, per se, and then broke off realizing that I wasn’t expressing myself correctly and that the words I was using would also mislead him to believe something that wasn’t true.
We went out to eat. He still treated it like a date. We had fun, of course. He held doors for me, and we agreed that I’d pay for the food and he’d pay for the movie. I kind of wanted to pay for both because I know he doesn’t make much money. He is sadly limited in career options due to a medical condition that is pretty invisible most of the time. But he insisted, which I’m unsure if it showed stubbornness or the fact that even though he doesn’t make much, he still likes to pull his own weight. We went to the movies. He let me pick the movie. It was more stupid than funny, but we enjoyed ourselves anyway. I felt myself kind of wanting to hold his hand, but I resisted (warning sign #4). I enjoyed feeling his shoulder pressed up against mine, but that might have been just because I was in a summery dress and the movie theatre was well air-conditioned.
The initial plan was for us to go back to my friend’s guest house under cover of darkness and he was to sleep over. However, he received a voice mail requiring him to return home. There were some pressing issues with his house that needed attending to, some immediately, others first thing in the morning. And I felt disappointed. Really disappointed. Like I wanted to cry (warning sign #5). I finally realized that I do like him and have feelings for him. When the fuck did that happen!? But dating him was still a bad idea for the reasons I listed above. I apologized for saying “no” to the date thing and explained that I didn’t want him to be a rebound. He said, “no problem” and said we just went out with friends and that it was fine. And then I did something stupid. I put my hand on top of his and held it the rest of the way to his house. He mentioned that he wished I could stay for another night. I asked why. His family was having a bonfire and barbeque and he wanted me to come. That sounded nice (I love bonfires), but I told him I had nowhere to sleep. He said he’d check with his housemates if I could stay over there. I was looking forward to that too, but I was busier over-analyzing my impulse to hold his hand. I knew what kind of mixed signals I was throwing off. I liked him. I was scared. Of so many things. I dropped him off and he hugged me. I asked for his phone number since the place where I’m staying has bad service. Texts are more likely to go through than the Facebook messages we were using to communicate. I fought to stay awake on my way back to the guest house and promptly went to sleep. The bed seemed amazingly soft and comfortable!
Relationships – yes
Meditation – no
Mood – good