I emailed The Neighbor.

I emailed The Neighbor two nights ago.

I’d had a glass or two of white wine, there was a late Spring chill in the air, Sinatra was playing on the record player.  Every sock drawer had been organized, every bill paid, all the laundry folded.   There were no hanging chads in my life, so to speak and it was as if suddenly I had nothing else to do but email him.

So I did.

As my fingers slid across the keys it was an out-of-body experience.  Was I really doing this?  It’d been a year and a half since we’d seen each other, more than two since he dumped me.  Why was I doing this??

Even as I wrote I knew it was an awkward stream of consciousness.  “I’m genuinely curious to know if you’re great or struggling.  After two long years apart I continue to work hard to trust and be open.  I basically trust no one; it’s almost a joke.  So, I guess I’m admitting to you that I’m not great.”  But I didn’t care and hit Send anyway.

The next morning I did a game recap with surprised friends.  Ann and Meredith were supportive, but both wanted to know what my hopes were.  Why now after all this time??

I had a toothbrush in my mouth when it hit me: breaking the silence I imposed upon us was for me.

My stoic acceptance of his decision to end the relationship without so much as a discussion about it, my reluctant agreement to be friends because that’s what he needed, my heartbreaking realization that I still loved him and had to say goodbye, my stifled, private rage at discovering a trail of lies and blatant dismissal of everything I’d ever wanted, my enduring pain at seeing his car every day and sustained, low-level anxiety of running into him while at home.  I did all of that alone — he bore not one ounce of the burden, not for one second — I kept it all.

It seemed to me during our few times meeting as friends in the 9 months after we broke up that whenever I let my pain become evident, let it slip out ever so slightly, he would cringe.  Whether it was from guilt, fatigue, or disdain I have no idea, but I was intent on buttoning up more tightly for two reasons: 1) I didn’t want him to have anything of me and 2) I didn’t want to hurt him.

As I wrestled with the leaching reality of abandonment and betrayal I believed that responding to it would be losing something.  I didn’t want him to get anything from me ever again — not one calorie of energy — even the pain, sorrow, and stifling lack of trust he left behind.

And even though he absolutely deserved to see the lacerations of his lies upon me I didn’t want him to feel badly.  That would be a direct link to my issue with ever being open about my real feelings about someone or something.  If my feelings hurt or upset someone then they are implicitly wrong, right??

And now it seems that what I did was create a void where all that feeling had no where to go but to me and so I have festered.  I have fucked, flaked, fought, and floundered until I am completely and utterly uninterested in not only men in general, but even sex.  Why bother when every time I let a dick get near me it literally disappoints me?  Think about the double entendre there.  It’s intentional.

He replied today, overly friendly to be honest.  How dare he call me his pet name after everything he’s done to me?  Should I list them all for you or just hyperlink like crazy??  The point is, the tone of my note was not familiar, so why respond to it in such a way?  It wasn’t appropriate.

He said he was saddened to hear of my trust issues because he can relate due to his own.  Not that he was saddened to hear it because he clearly contributed to them.  But because he can relate.  Well, awesome.  Thanks.

He gave me a better email to use and invited me to text, but I no longer have his number and I don’t yet know what to say to him.  I feel a volcano of emotion about to erupt, that needs purging.  I want him to know what the last two years have been like for me with his odd internet stalking of my AFF profile, seeing his goddamned car every goddamned day, and the anxiety of a run-in I carry with me despite my best efforts to exorcise it.  (It’s possible had I never run into him and his girlfriend at the gym that the threat would have ever crossed my mind, but it did and so it does.)

Some will think this is a huge mistake; I’ve already gotten closure, moved on.  It’s been two years! they’ll say.  Others will think there never was closure and this is a good path forward; Show him, girl!  Tell him!

But what do I need from this?  I didn’t write the first note expecting anything in return, but what I got was friendly in tone and communal.  It wasn’t bad.  But there was a sensitivity missing, a subtle nod to what that must have taken for me to finally write.  His response wasn’t somber enough.  This man broke me and he replied to me like a long-lost close office mate whose 9-5 life he once shared.

I’m still contemplating all of this.  What I want to do is not at all clear.  That stupid 150 word email has begun to peel a long-suffering scab atop a festering wound and I feel like a stranger in a strange land.  I only know how to be controlled and at a protective distance.  How do I do this whole This is the truth deal?

I hope there are still some who read me; any words of wisdom are more than welcome.  I need help.  I am at a complete loss.  But maybe this will be the end of it?

 

Sometimes, we should remain lost.

Lincoln loved me when I was an innocent 18-year-old girl.

His love burned bright and inexorably for months as I struggled with his attentions.  I couldn’t understand why this handsome 19-year-old boy liked anything about me, but he clung tightly.  His letters came regularly, his beautiful cursive unmistakable.  His words inked so tenderly my young heart often broke as I read for I was confused and uncertain about my own.

He had no car, so I would drive to the shipyard where he’d be waiting for me, the giant Navy ship he called home loomed heavily behind him like a sleeping mountain.  He’d pick me up and squeeze me and I’d sigh not with pleasure, but with impatience.  I wished he didn’t like me so much.

Our little misbegotten love affair ended when my little sister caught him reading a letter I had written, but never sent.  A note which captured a vulnerable moment wherein I contemplated loving him.  His earnest search for me in that letter caused me to evict him from my life instantly and without remorse.  I crushed him irrevocably that day.

Years later I hunted for him online.   Little tidbits of information he’d told became the only leads I had.  He was from Texas somewhere, I had his last name, he’d been in the Navy.  I poured over people-finder and high school class websites, but to no avail.  And then Facebook happened and there he fucking was.

I found him married, with many children through different marriages and configurations and discovered that he had lived 60 miles away from me for 5 years until he’d been restationed to somewhere in the south (via the Army this time).

We quickly caught up, but it came to a screeching halt one day when he announced that his wife was uncomfortable with him talking to me.  My husband understood my excitement and had blessed my discovery that Lincoln wasn’t dead.  Apparently, Lincoln’s wife had very different feelings about me.  And so, amid his many apologies, we said goodbye again in 2008.

In 2016 I became curious about him again and re-found him on Facebook.  I was no longer blocked from his account and messaged him, fingers crossed.  He was instantly receptive this time: he and his wife were separated and he was now 80 miles away, not several states.

We texted and talked on the phone round the lock for days, a virtual love-fest of lost innocence and crossed signals.  Our youthful romance figured prominently for him throughout his life and explained his wife’s misgivings of me.  I apologized for being such a broken girl.  He revealed he had been a virgin, too.  Our words were tender touches, two blind people rediscovering their surroundings with gentle explorations, every sense at attention.

Tearfully one night I revealed my double life.  He said he accepted me no matter what and was proud of me.  I shared the blog and Hy and everything I had ever done.  Still, he accepted me.  We set a date to meet.

He was a card-carrying biker now, literally a member of a national biker club with initiation rights and rivalries; the whole nine yards.  Tattooed all over, short, brown beard with a handlebar mustache, a Harley-Davidson hog his only form of transportation.  He looked formidable in my doorway, leather vest covered in biker paraphernalia, but his big bear hug was just the same.  And my immediate response to pull away was the same, too.

We reacquainted ourselves as adults side by side on my couch for the duration of a single drink.  I called a Lyft and we headed out to my favorite bar.  I didn’t want to just sit and drink at my house, the bedroom around the corner.

We laughed and flirted for hours.  The sun set and tears flowed as we finally said the things we’d always yearned to share.  I felt like a star-crossed lover, pulled away from a sweet tenderness I’d never again know.

Back home on my couch, we kissed.  His plump, soft lips were the same, his sounds, too.  I mounted his lap and he suckled my breasts — a move far past the Second Base of our youth — and I rubbed his crotch.  But I couldn’t go further.

I dragged him to bed, pulled the covers over us, and we fell asleep.

In the morning, I awoke to his big arm flung over my waist, his belly smushed warmly against my back.  I felt trapped.

He murmured and wriggled closer to me and I held still, but wanted to run.  His sweetness felt foreign, wrong.  I didn’t deserve it.  We got up and I made us coffee.  He had to head back to the club for a meeting that afternoon.

I was nervously distant and felt as if I could see the pain on his face, but it’s possible I only suspected to see it.  It was me at 18 all over again.  We hugged and kissed goodbye and the last I saw of him was the menacing skull and cross sewn on the back of his leather vest.

Over the next few days he’d call in the mornings to see how I was and we continued to text.  The intensity of our reunion clung to me like old perfume.  How could I fit him into my life?  I ate men for breakfast and Lincoln was no piece of sausage.  But I wouldn’t have to figure anything out.

One day, the texting didn’t happen.  I checked in and his answer was cursory.  Another day passed.  Again, barely a response.  And then he said we needed to talk.

My stomach dropped.  “Only one other man has ever said that to me,” I told him.  “And then that man left me.”

“Things are complicated,” he said.

A day or two went by without any other word and I guessed that he was reconciling with his ex and we could no longer be friends.  “Am I right??”

“Yes you are. Did some soul-searching. I appreciate your friendship but this is the path I choose.”

I burst into tears and tried in vain to get him to reconcile with her and still be friends with me.  He refused.

“I can’t believe this… I mean, of course you have to do what you need to and I support that, but… fuck.  This hurts.  Not gonna lie.”

“I know and I’m sorry. But I have to make her and my son my priority. Not just over you but the club and everything else.”

“I get that, I just don’t know why you can’t do both: be in my life as a friend and make her a priority but, ok… I guess now it’s my turn to have my heart broken, huh?  I wish you the best, Lincoln, and I’ll always be here for you.  I’ve got to go – need to pull myself together before I head into work.”

And his final words to me:

“Take care.”

He unfriended me on Facebook and has remained silent since, just as he said he would.

I doubled over and sobbed.  Lincoln seemed to be my lifeline to so many things.  The innocent girl I was to the wanton woman I am, the past to the future, from Hy to Me.  And he had chosen something else outright over any of it in even the slightest form.

I cried for a few more minutes, took a deep breath, and brushed myself off.  I had lived most of my adult life without him thus far; there was no reason I couldn’t easily go on without him for the rest.  But now the story is sad for far more reasons than youthful misgivings and childish anger.  Now I’m sad because I know I have truly lost him — forever — and I wish I had never found him again.

Soul searching, indeed.

 

 

Wicked Wednesday... a place to be wickedly sexy or sexily wicked

I’m hiding.

I’m hiding from myself and what I know I need to do.

I need to drink less, stop all the horrible men, focus on my body, my baby, my work.  More.  Not as something to do, but as something to be.

I cried today on my new blue couch as the man with the same name as The Neighbor, the non-drinker who took me to breakfast many weeks ago, told me he missed me.

I had just told him I wasn’t up to seeing him tonight.

I can’t.

I don’t have it in me to poke beyond the failed morning we shared after a night spent playing pool and me drinking more than I needed to prove I wasn’t self-conscious that he wasn’t at all.  I don’t have it in me to give of myself, to his sweet attempts to connect and build a real friendship with me.  I feel my insides churl at the thought of anyone reaching me.  Least of all him and his soft, apologetic way.

The other day I let slip my iron grip and browsed the library of photos of my beautiful ex, the one who left me, The Neighbor.  I fell headlong into pictures of our long, three-year liaison, our passionate affair.  His giant, beautiful cock jut out from his thick, pale thighs in photo after photo and I sat still with tears in my eyes longing for what I felt with him.

This afternoon after I came twice to a submissive’s texts of obedience I was triggered to look for my old submissive’s gift: a video he once sent while I was in California.   A video of him cumming to me, calling out my name as his hand, a Caucasian blur on his giant erection, created an arc to and from the black lace panties he’d somehow procured while I was away.  “Fuck me, Hy.  Fuck me,” he panted “I’m gonna cum, Hy,” and then his body jerked and cum spurted onto his taught, furry belly as he moaned my name one last time.

But I couldn’t find it so finely buried deep in the tombs of my email.  It appears to be as gone as he is.

I feel as though I am festering, deliberately mistreating myself with booze, men, and inactivity.  Instead of moving or creating I sit, nearly comatose, binge watching this show or that.  Sex and the City, Golden Girls, Masters of Sex.  Each a parable, a lesson in human sexuality and society in its own right.  Be daring, be open, be free, be happy.

But I am none of those things anymore.

I am scared and alone and above all else lonely.  I am trapped between worlds and between decisions and I don’t know which way is the right way.  I am in some sort of stasis, my heart trapped in this place of low and sustained pain as if a pen were driven into it; not so far as to be fatal, but far enough to make every movement painful.  I don’t even fantasize about life without the pain.  That almost doesn’t seem possible.

But this – this feels like the moment before I choose to do something.  This paralysis surely predates movement and traction.  My psyche is merely gearing up for the heavy work, right??  For making the choices I know I need to make.  The tough, “This is the right thing to do,” shit.

Because if the thought of a kind man coming over because he cares about me and wants to get closer reduces me to tears then I do have work to do.  And lots of it.

Don’t look at me.

 

Sinful Sunday

Bonheur de Vivre.

Two weeks ago a man wrapped his strong, loving arms around me and tears slipped down my cheeks as my face pressed against his shoulder and he pressed his lips to my temples.  I felt his breathing as his belly pressed against my own then fell away.  We stood locked like this for many minutes outside the college bar, swaying, murmuring to one another, me crying.  Bar patrons had to walk around us.

I met Tony when we were 21.  He was fresh out of the army and I was in my senior year of college.  He and another army buddy replaced me when I moved out of my friend’s apartment which I’d subletted for the summer.  Tony was tallish, fair-haired, and bespeckled.  His mouth pulled up in one corner and he was painfully shy despite his dashing good looks.

He cussed like me, was shy like me, and laughed like me.  I was instantly drawn to him and him to me.

We drank beers on their dirty couches on his porch overlooking the city scape for years.  Played games, wrestled, did cocaine like it was 1978, but we never got into a relationship.  The closest we ever came were the two fateful occasions over the next handful of years which found us drunkenly getting his big penis into my writhing, willing body.

But we didn’t handle it well.

The first time he seemed to really lean in my direction and I bolted, but because we were so youthfully bonded, like childhood friends, we were able to right ourselves and party on.

The second time it happened the night before my boyfriend did a 1, 2 punch to my chest and shoulder.  When I got the boyfriend to finally leave the next day, terrified for my safety, I called Tony to come stay with me, but it was his turn to bolt.   He never called me back and two months later he knocked up some chick in his hometown 2 hours away and he disappeared for 11 years.  Until Facebook in 2009.

That night with him and his old army buddy was a turning point in my life.  I had been sexually and emotionally starved for 6 years by then and when he saw me and said, “Daaamn, Hy!!  Look at your curves!!” I was shocked.  I might have looked over my shoulder.  Never shy with words he lavished me with compliments.  His hair might have disappeared, but it was still my Tony, crooked smile and all.

The three of us drank all night until the friend left just before dawn.  Tony and I looked at one another and we were transported to the filthy couch on his porch once more; we were all over each other.

Hands, mouths, kissing and smacking, clothes flung and ripped off.

We didn’t fuck, but when I awoke in my marital bed with a man who wasn’t my husband I moaned and tearfully I sent him away.

When my husband came home from his business trip I described to him how miserable I was and how we needed to change something, anything, so that I didn’t feel so alone and neglected.  I suggested he sleep with other women while traveling so as to gain confidence and perhaps a swagger that might trickle down to me.  He agreed and then upon further reflection offered me the same not knowing of my tryst.

Over the next year Tony and I got together 4 or so times.  Each time a gorgeous show of pent-up sexual frustrations for the both of us.  He was an overworked single father and I a neglected housewife.  It ended when I realized I wanted and needed even more than what Tony could ever give me.  We were only ever any good on that porch anyway.

That unrequited love relationship so early into being a woman epitomized me as a romantic being.  Where I am capable and experienced sexually, I am terrified and incapable romantically.  When Tony wanted me I couldn’t handle the attention and when he didn’t want me I was ravenous.  Even eleven years later as I sensed him coming closer to me I backed away to focus on my own life rather than an “us.”

And then there was that Tuesday two weeks ago.  “Hey Hy.  You busy tonight??” his text read.

We agreed to each drive 45 mins to a half way point from his business conference, a little college town known for its partying students and cold, lazy river.  It was 10 pm before I got there and Tony had been caught in traffic.

I fought tears as he walked up to me, arms spread.  I’ve had this reaction to him ever since we unofficially ended our affair 8 years ago.  He’d pass through town with his daughter and we would hug and I would cry or I’d stop at his on the way to see friends and the waterworks would happen in his kitchen instead.  I can’t seem to control myself.

He knows me.  He loves me.

We exchanged hugs and pleasantries and then he said, “So, I’m going to have a baby boy in 3 weeks!”  I thought he was joking, but no, poor Tony had done it again, only this time at least she was a grown up woman with 3 other healthy, stable children and a nice career.  “Yep!  I sure know how to make life harder!” he laughed.

But he loves this new woman and they go to church together and he’s determined to make this a better decision, a better family than ever before.  He showed me picture after picture of them together until I saw a flash of flesh.

I made him go back.  It was his pretty dick.  So I sent some pics as I had done for years before this other person ever entered our universe and we sat in our comfortable place of closeness no one else could possibly understand.

“She doesn’t know about you, Hy,” he confessed.  “I don’t know how to explain you.”  I hugged him and told him it was ok and we rattled on about something else and time stood still.  We laughed and talked and fought (we always fight) and then the bar shut down at midnight and we found ourselves not wanting to let go.

And so we didn’t right outside the door.

We stood and swayed and I smelled his sweet scent and breathed him in and my heart broke with loneliness.

“I don’t want to go yet,” he announced gently.  “Lets go take a walk.”

We walked, nearly hand in hand, around the town square where drunk and rowdy college students spilled out of the various bars ringed around what I can only assume was City Hall.  We laughed at how that was us 20 years ago and we recapped our sad and stupid story.

If only he had answered the phone, or called me back, our lives might be completely different.

“I was having feelings for you,” he admitted and not for the first time.

“I know, Tone Bone.  I know.”  He took my hand as we crossed the street and I even let him hold it for many strides until I broke free and took his arm instead.

We found a bench near a bar and sat with our legs pressed against each other from knee to hip and I curled into his nook as we blatantly watched the beautiful, young people stumble and bumble past.  We rated butts and boobs and watched while one plaid-clad young man took a piss behind the car parked directly in front of us.

And then it was close to 1 am and we both had to go.  I held back the torrent of tears I felt pressing against my eyes only long enough to hug him fiercely and give him a kiss on the cheek.  I drove away with much less constraint and sobbed for miles as I followed the streaky red tail lights ahead of me all the way home to my empty house and home and the new art on my bedroom wall.

-1905 Henri Matisse

 

 

I have too many secrets.

As I walked back to my car among others leaving the throbbing venue I felt full, content, invigorated. And also sad.

Tears filled my eyes and my face cracked into a broken grimace in the shadows. I felt invisible.

I imagined all the conversations being had, the thoughts being mulled. Tears spilled down my cheek in one puny trickle as I made my way beneath the street lights, the happy voices behind me receded.

I wish I could do that.

I wish I could get up on stage and share my art.  I can’t play an instrument or sing, but I could share my writing, my life, my experiences and be the artist that I am for all to behold.

But I can’t.

Instead I am a secret, a closely guarded identity that only a handful know. It hurts that I can’t be all of me.

Recently I was at a professional event and we discussed our lives in relation to work in general. It’s tricky business, we all agreed. I have to cross an ocean to show my face and be myself. It’ll never happen here.

And I am crushed.

I am crushed that I have constructed a life which will never be able to reach its full potential as either Hy or me because the other holds us back.

The real life me has a professional standard to uphold and honor but Hy could endanger that. And Hy needs to share and expose herself and her art but the other me won’t let her.

I am stuck in the worst kind of purgatory of self and I don’t know what to do about it.

I have such a story to share.

Both parts of my life are dynamic sides to the same coin, each demanding special attention.

A man I met several weeks ago on Snapchat wooed me with his charm and broken heart and convinced me he was safe — he nearly had me in Vegas this very evening if it weren’t for my current and overwhelming need for distance from all men.

I told him what it is I really am and he instantly got it. “If you are found out as Hy, you won’t just face embarrassment or judgment, but you could lose your livelihood. You’d lose everything, wouldn’t you??”

Yes. Yes I would.

But it hurts keeping these two sides separate. It hurts never getting to be all of me in any part of my life. Always hiding and manipulating stories.

After the show where I laughed and cheered with deep belly-shaking howls I didn’t want to be alone. I needed to be around people and so I sat myself at a marble-top bar. Alone, but not alone.

I thought of the man who smelled like musky grass. His cologne was all natural and called something like Herbal Vibes.

“Hyacinth,” I heard a deep voice say behind me at intermission. “I thought that was you!” I didn’t know if he meant he’d thought that just then or if he’d spotted me in the crowd earlier in the night.

We hugged hello and I felt grateful I instantly remembered his name. He said he was there with Haley.

“Let me go get her!” He said with a broad smile. I wasn’t sure why he had to. She was the girl he’d fallen in love with 3 months before we met a year and a half ago and whom was his “primary” then. I’d told him I could be second to none and that had been it for us.

Haley came down, beaming. She had beautiful, glowing skin and the Millennial head-shave women of that age love to don. We shook hands warmly and then the three of us stood awkwardly.

They said they never missed this show. I wanted to tell them my life is a show.

They’re engaged now.

Good for them.

I told them I’m still allergic to relationships, and almost as if on cue she said, “It’ll happen when the time is right!” I didn’t think I’d sounded sad about my allergy.

I’m glad they’re so happy, but I couldn’t share in their joy. Seeing them get to be themselves in public together reminded me how much I don’t get the same freedom and privilege.

My friends, my family; other than the danger of strangers frivolously trying to ruin my life, do I really have anything to fear telling those who like and respect me??

Could people other than strangers know about Hy and be proud of me? Would they be supportive?

The answer is most likely yes — that couple for example — Herbal Vibes and Haley — but what if they told a friend who told a friend? That person wouldn’t give two shits about hurting me and then the dominoes would fall.

Later that night at the bar with the marble I drank overpriced Chardonnay and my vulva fell asleep on the wooden stool as I drafted this post, but at least I wasn’t alone and at least I was doing my art.

Right then. And in public. Even though no one knew.  Like always.

I remember a time.

I remember a time when you reached for my hand.  Your warm skin on mine startled me.  I pulled away.

We continued to walk towards the theater and I awkwardly explained my reaction.  That we were just to be friends; no hand holding is allowed in a friends with benefits situation.  You seemed to shrug and keep walking.

In the darkened theater our hands molded to each other’s thighs and dipped below belts and skirts.  That was ok.

But don’t hold my hand.

He haunts me.

It’s been roughly 2 years and 2 months since The Neighbor came over to stay the night and instead told me he wanted a break and ended our 3 year long roller-coaster relationship.

Two years and 2 months of driving past his building and seeing his car every. single. fucking. day.

Two years and 2 months of walking to the office or the pool or the gym and, knowing I could run into him, walked that stiff, cameras-are-on-me walk.

Two years and 2 months of never letting my guard down when I go out, of scanning every room quickly to assess his presence.

Two years and 2 months of keeping my head down while I grocery shop because it’s better to be truly ignorant than it is to feign it.

Two years and two months of him visiting my AFF profile and leaving a digital trail.

It’s also been two years and two months since I’ve had the kind of sex that made my body vibrate and weep with abandon.

Two years and two months since I laid my hands on a rock-hard, big, beautiful, long and achingly curved cocked.

Two years and two months since I thought anyone loved me.

Two years and two months is a long time.

The pain has faded, as it is supposed to do, but it’s like stale, lingering perfume.  No matter how much I’ve scrubbed it remains.

I’ve allowed myself to mourn, pushed myself forward, carefully kept an eye on what I need.  I go to therapy every week and write more words about heartbreak than I care to own.  And still, he lingers.

He lingers because I am not truly free.  His specter haunts me via his proximity, his fancy black car, even his downtown office.  And most of all, he haunts me because I feel violated.

I feel violated that he visits my profile and knowingly leaves the proof of his presence.

He could switch to invisible browsing at the very least (it’s how I operate the site) or he could just choose to leave me the fuck alone all together.

I blocked him for several weeks to give myself a respite from his stalking, to not see him in my visitor’s list, and it felt good, like taking my vitamins — this was good for me, after all.  And then I felt like I didn’t need it anymore, like, surely by now I’d be out of his regular AFF routine or maybe he’d have just realized how inappropriate it was and stopped altogether.  So I unblocked him.

But I was wrong.

Within 36 hours he visited.

And I was crushed.

I wanted it to be over, to not have to be the one to impose a protective shield.  I want him to leave me alone because he wants to leave me alone.  Not because I’ve blocked him.

It’s the difference between getting a restraining order and knowing there’s an outside force imposing reasonable thought to someone and your stalker moving on on his own.  One feels less safe than the other, I assure you.

The fact that he indulges in his curiosity — or whatever the fuck it is — makes my skin crawl and traps me in this static, hovering place.  I feel smothered, vulnerable, sad, confused, angry, violated.

Isn’t it enough that despite making 6 figures annually and having all the financial freedom in the world he chooses to remain at the gates of my life?  That he hasn’t fucking moved away?  I just signed my 3rd lease.  Surely his next will be the one he chooses to not renew, right?  Does he also have to infringe on my online world, too??

He could even be reading this blog and I wouldn’t know since I never tracked his IP address when I had the chance.  He could be one of the 20 or so local readers last week for all I know.  I hope he does read it.  At least here I feel in control.

I don’t know how to exorcise myself of him and I feel cloaked in his dysfunctional fog on two fronts: my life in general and my love life.

Will he be at this restaurant with a date?  My new gym?  Will I ever get to have the kind of sex we shared again?  Will I always know what I’m missing?

It doesn’t matter that I have told myself exactly what I’d say or do if I ever ran into him, I still have to think about it in the first place.  It’s a part of me I constantly don’t have; it’s always running to protect myself.

He is everywhere and I hate it.  And I hate that I hate it.

All in pieces.

 

A lot has happened: Bullshit no longer accepted here

I’ve been looking forward to this moment for weeks, this desire to sit down and write.  Like hunger, the posts still form in my mind, but my body remains far from this place of catharsis and raw sharing, this rich meal of creativity.  The reason why finally occurred to me the other day: I’ve been processing.

The other morning after dropping Peyton off at school, dressed in leggings and a hoodie and sporting two long braids and virtually no makeup, I met a man for a non-date at a nearby greasy spoon.

We met on AFF and though our politics, desires, and physical characteristics match up there was one glaringly obvious mismatch: after a 20-year marriage he is looking to play the field and I am not.

We confirmed the bad timing in an email or two, but he seemed to like me enough to ask me out for coffee anyway.  I agreed because the idea of meeting someone new without the threat of decisions about sex or having to figure out anything beyond enjoying his company seemed like a welcome breath of fresh air.

We chatted over an omelette, brisket hash and black coffee until he had to leave to catch a plane; two straight hours of life stories flew by like 5 minutes with an old friend.  It was the first time I’d been able to be unapologetically open with anyone new.  Nothing was at stake.  I didn’t regret one word, one move, because I wasn’t playing a game.  I wasn’t trying to win him over.

I spoke openly and brazenly, held nothing back as I might with any friend.  It was listening to myself sum up the last 2+ years of my life that I it all came into clear view like Neo finally seeing the Matrix for the first time.

The first year after The Neighbor left me and we attempted friendship felt like I had a bag on my head in a hallway filled with razor blades.  I was blind and in unbelievable pain.  I wanted only to be filled up with cock and my mind blown, but the closest I ever came was with two men — each of whom were just flashes in the pan.  Little did I know what a boon that year would actually be.

I ended the friendship the end of the first year and started year #2 completely TN-free and although it was definitely the best thing I could have done for myself, the rest of the second year could be defined as pure shit from every angle.  My finances were in the toilet along with my emotional and physical health, dicks lasted all of 2-3 minutes as did my interest in them.  My approach to life was simply to survive, not conquer.  It was a shit show with only one little bright spot.

So here I am in the third year, the year I have reclaimed as my own.  I announced to myself and the world in January that I was switching gears, that I was ready to let someone in.  I changed my dating profiles and started to screen for similar relationship goals.  It hasn’t gone well.

I knew it’d take work and time, but I will bashfully admit that for some unknown reason I believed in my heart of hearts that I was the only obstacle to finding love and that once I removed it I would drown in all the feels from all the men.  Go ahead.  Laugh.  I sure as fuck am.

Surprisingly, there are a lot of obstacles out there to finding a good mate.

For one, being vulnerable is tough.  I find myself trying to find that fine line of self disclosure and TMI.  When they ask me about my last relationship what the ever-loving fuck do I tell them??  Do I mention how I was *this close* to dumping him, but then he followed me to my current apartment complex and he still lives there?  Do I mention all the deceit and denial and distance?  That he continues to stalk my nudie profile?  Or do I just say, “It’s been a little over 2 years,” and leave the impression that I’m not still really fucking fucked up about it?  The difficult part of it is that I need someone to be gentle with me because I’m still so very. fucked. up. about it.

Two, turns out I can fuck a Trump supporter, but I can’t date him, and there appear to be a bunch of them in my age bracket.  It’s not because I’m a sore loser.  It’s because I vehemently disagree with his policies, his choices for heads of state and agencies, and on a purely party-line argument, I want the choice to do with my body what I will.  I don’t think these anti-abortion men realize that if I’m forced to have their baby, they’re forced to fork over a shit ton of money for it, as well.  I also don’t know how I’d introduce a Trump voter to my extremely liberal family.  My sister would vomit on her shoes as she clutched her brown babies and black husband closer.

And three, men are just simply shits.  Like Rex who strung me along with days worth of texting and phone calls and long conversations about what it was I was looking for during our 4 dates only to eventually ghost on me like a 23 year old; or Mr. Panties who when I said I didn’t want to have sex that night saw it as a challenge and was relentless until I caved, bragged about his 9″ dick (it wasn’t), and who, while I was dressing by the light of my phone the next morning, had a pair of women’s underwear inside workout pants on the floor by the bed and didn’t know to whom they belonged; or Devon, he who didn’t ask me any questions, who fucked me for our second go-around on our second date in the dark pre-dawn, but the morning before our third date texted to say he “Just wasn’t feeling it,”; or Trey, the big, muscled gym trainer who tried his best to get me to call him “my king,” as he pressed me against the wall of his Amerisuites room roughly 3 hours after we met; or Joe, the single father who worked weeks at a time on oil-rigs in a nearby state who came after 10 minutes (with an 8 minute blowjob) and never got hard again and so we just left it there forever; or the 21-yo (who’s now 23) who was supposed to just be fun, but after fucking for 20 minutes his mom called and ripped him a new one for forgetting to pick up his little brother.  He left to get him and was supposed to come back, but his worry his mother wouldn’t pay for his Spring Break if he left the house again overrode any desire to spend the rest of the night with me; or lastly, Logan, the sweet 28-year-old who I brought home after our first date and let him stick his giant dick in my ass, but who after he fucked me on our second date went to his car to grab his phone at 2 am and just never. came. back.

This isn’t an invitation to pick apart my choices or try to figure out why these men have done what they did.  Some of those men were supposed to be strictly for fun and others I was legitimately gathering data to see if he was a possible mate.  I have found that my needs for cock do not diminish just because I’m attempting to feed my heart  — it’s confusing — but what happened with Logan, being treated like so much trash after many hours of talking and building what I thought was a little friendship only to be literally cast aside…

My cage is rattled.

I have had some pretty horrible things happen to me at the hands of men over the years ranging from benign neglect to all out sexual assault.  I’ve been lied to, cajoled, begged, ignored, and relentlessly pursued, and all of it felt par for the course to one degree or another — even the assaults — but to be left by a lover whom moments before had been buried inside of me as if I were an empty plate he had no more need for… that fucking hurt.  That got to me.

It was the final experience of the past 2 years and 3 months that finally drove it all home: I am worth so much more.

I am worth the effort of someone to get to know, to take time away from other things to spend on me.  My pussy is worth as much, as well.  It isn’t up for grabs anymore just because it’s weeping with need.  Together, my fucking pussy and I, we are an incredibly valuable being deserving of far more currency than I’ve been charging.

I don’t want to fuck anyone just because I can or just because I need to feel something between my legs.  I don’t want to fuck a cluster of cells.  I want to fuck a man, a person, someone who is real to me.  Someone whose heart I can feel beat beneath my ear and whose cock pulses in time because we’ve decided to share it together.  Because he’s earned it.

This shift in me saved my pussy and me from fucking a Trump supporter the other weekend.  BJ was a dashing, funny, charismatic man whom I met on Coffee Meets Bagel.  We’d met for drinks on Friday and it had been a B+ date (he lost credit for talking about his crushingly beautiful ex-girlfriend and not walking me to my car).  The next day while wine tasting with friends, he became effusively day-drunk and wanted to see me again.  Immediately.

After royally pissing off my girlfriend by naively telling him where we were because he was on the other side of town he and his friend joined us.  It didn’t turn out badly.  He was affable and fun and I invited up to my apartment after drinks.  I also told him I wasn’t interested in sex.

We made out like lustful teenagers, but he respected my wishes and we slept curled up together fully clothed.  He in his t-shirt and shorts and I in my pajamas.  The next morning we cuddled and laughed in the soft morning light and I coquettishly rubbed on his bulge and imagined what it’d feel like to be inside of me.  But our hands remained atop all fabric.  By 1 pm, after more napping and canoodling we agreed it was time for me to take him home.  It was right about then I discovered he voted for Trump.

I groaned and felt a visceral clench around my gut.  “Does this mean I have to walk home?” he joked.  Apparently he had decided to ignore my “I’m allergic to Trump voters” line in my profile.  He said he didn’t know why.

I searched my soul for days after and came to the conclusion that he and I could never be more than friends.  Much like having a hard-line religious difference, I have realized my political beliefs in this election climate are as close to a faith as I have ever had and he and I appear to believe in very different things.  And it was with this realization that I felt the full benefit of waiting to know someone before I let them put their blood-stuffed body part into me: I got to walk away from the night unscathed and with all my emotional money; I had spent nothing on being with him.

There are still two sides of me — the professional, mommy, daughter, sister me and the dissolute, sexed-up, hungry, wild me — but each of them are a little bit wiser now.  The public-facing and the private Me’s have finally realized that all men will have to do some work to get either of them and that bullshit is no longer accepted at this establishment as a means of payment.

 

The king is dead.

On the night of our second date when I asked him if he’d like to come up to my apartment and have a glass of wine Rex paused before answering.

“I’d like to talk to you about that, actually.”  I waited as the city skyline shrunk behind us and lights blurred by.  “I’ve been thinking and… I don’t want to be a part of your ‘story’.”

I sat there dumbfounded.  What??  And what did that even mean??

We’d been texting all day every day for a week; he’d call me in the mornings on his way to and from work; send me sexy pics.  We’d just had a terrific date and my offer for him to come up was just to talk more.  I wasn’t ready to have sex with him.

What ensued was a long talk outside my building where I tried — and probably ultimately failed — to convince him of my sincerity about finding a beautiful relationship.  My penchant for large penises loomed large in our discussion on his end and he was very clear that he didn’t want to be “one of many” with proof of my seeing other men on the internet for all to see.

We parted that night with a sweet kiss and a hug and then I shut my front door and cried.

I was serious about opening up, loving someone, bringing someone into my life and this man didn’t believe me.

I knew before we sat in his fancy car that night that it would be a struggle for any man to date me while knowing about the blog and I had given it much thought.  How could I keep writing and be myself while also protecting my privacy and that of the man who was involved with me?

I found the solution: Just like how I am discreet in real life about my dating affairs, so would I be discreet on the blog.  In other words, I wouldn’t write about anyone else I was dating while we were.

He worried that it might not be authentic for me to do so, but nothing could have been further from the truth.  In fact, it felt exceedingly authentic.  I wanted to make this as normal a dating experience as possible for the both of us.

We kept chatting for two more weeks, met up once more, and then we had pot roast, a meal I find generally distasteful; it’s dry, uninspiring, and not the least bit nostalgic.  He loved it — practically licked his plate — and then told me he wasn’t feeling it for me.

I cried that night, too.

And then he disappeared for the weekend which gave me the opportunity to clear my head and figure out my next move.  He was tremendously polite and whenever I’d text he’d reply, but I felt like I was keeping myself on his radar.  When I finally heard back from him it was from my initiation, but then I let it alone.  I wanted to see what he would do without my constant arm waving.

By the following Thursday (a week after I’d made him dinner) our conversations were pleasant but lasted only 5 or so lines a piece.  Friday he was silent and so was I.  And Saturday and Sunday until 9 days later when I texted him this:

So, not to state the obvious or anything, but it’s been a week since we chatted.  Fair to say we’re not exploring options with one another anymore??  Or am I somehow mistaken?

Three days later — today — and I haven’t heard back.  I think it’s safe to say we are no longer dating and I am now released from my self-imposed censoring.  I will begin again to track and share my life until the cycle starts anew with someone else.  If it ever does.

What started out as something promising — checked nearly every box I had — has now devolved to a man in his 50s ghosting me.

I don’t regret one second of this little exercise, though; I learned a lot from this affair of two spirits.

I learned to allow someone else’s inertia to reveal their feelings; to believe someone when they say they don’t want me — a lesson that was nearly impossible for me to grok with The Neighbor because he never left me alone.  I learned that sometimes people’s desire for politeness over conflict will keep you spiraling a drain; I learned that when things are tough you can determine a lot about a person and how they communicate about it.  And I learned that no matter how skilled I am in the kitchen I will never, ever like motherfucking pot roast.

Starting again.

 

Febraury Photofest

Time flies.


It was more than two years ago when I took this pic.  I was with The Neighbor and I had no idea what was about to happen between us.  

I remember feeling lonely and ignored and thought that sharing these pics with him and my Internet Boyfriend would help right my wayward ship.

It was a fleeting moment of rightness and now stands as a monument to the angst and pain I was experiencing at the time.  

The half a dozen gifts my exhusband gave me during our marriage had the same effect on me.  It’s why I boxed them all up in a little time capsule.  

I’m sharing this pic today because I’m so far from that place I’d like to commemorate it with a new perspective: hope.

Febraury Photofest