Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Good work

Story of my life. I can find a way to turn any situation into an emotional mess.

I'm a little fuzzy today. Last night I hosted a small Seder. I think we drank just enough but I'm moving slow today and I think that's why. The best news I have is that my knee is feeling great.  Barely hurts at all. Most of my really challenging exercises are getting easy. I biked around 15 miles this weekend and I wasn't even sore. I'm feeling very encouraged. Now it's time to pick my exercise habits back up consistently and I think I'll be feeling better and more energetic all around.

On the work front, things are going pretty well. I was getting a little discouraged, but a few kind words from my project director really perked me up. This person tends to be quite negative and I realized it's just her style. When she says something critical it's just her way of expressing herself, and the message isn't that I'm a big screw up. In fact, not at all.

Then again, when it comes to dating, I am sort of a big screw up. So, R. We had that date last weekend. It went about as I expected, including a sleepover. Nothing shocking there. I knew that the following weekend (the weekend just past), he was going out of town. I thought we might have dinner during the week. I also though we would still text but probably not as much.  Turned out I was wrong on both counts. On Sunday, after I settled in at home, I sent him a message and we talked a little bit. He said he was too busy to get together before his trip and that we should "reconnect next week." That threw me and I asked what was up. He was busy, that was all.

Then I heard nothing from him for two days.  I kind of lost it. I hate, hate, hate getting into that weird funk, but there I was. I've been there enough times to know that it wasn't really about him. Sure, it was kind of shitty for him to completely drop our companionable text habit with essentially no warning. It was also troubling that right at the moment when the desire to maintain some connection would seem expected, it was conspicuously absent.

Nevertheless, despite the negative implications of R's silence, my reaction was way over sized. I knew it yet felt helpless. I dropped down into a deep pit of misery and despair for those two days. Of course, finally, I broke the silence. I was managing myself ok at work, I had friends who were listening to me and providing a mixture of sympathy (Amanda) and tough love (Nancy). It helped a lot and I'm super grateful at my low points that I have friends who will step up and talk me through--even though they've done it for me more times than I can count and it must be getting tiresome. But I didn't want to spend another painful day wondering and worrying about...um what exactly? I needed to release the pressure.

Anyway, I sent R a text late on that second day and our conversation was mostly ok until it wasn't exactly ok. I would say that I went just over the line in what I said. My first salvo was an emoticon with a half frown. The response to that was "it must seem like I've dropped off the face of the earth." Ya think? I replied that I was hurt and confused, but he didn't understand why (maybe because you dropped off the face of the earth?). He seemed to think that our limited acquaintance (a week of chatting and two dates) didn't merit any concern over two days of silence. That was a neat way to sum it up (mine would be more like 10 days of constant contact, sleeping together, then total silence). I think you can see our disjuncture! I tried to convey my perspective, my despair at making to much of it, and my frustration. He sympathized a little then said we should talk the next day because it was getting late. And so we did.

The conversation the next day was interesting. Before we talked I was pretty sure I was done with him. I knew I'd overreacted and I sort of understood why (mostly a fear of abandonment, which had very little to do with R given our short acquaintance), but I was still put off by his attitude. He sent me a text where he said I "wigged out" and that we should be able to go two days without contact. I asked to talk on the phone instead of text, and so we did.  When we spoke, I started by saying that in the grand scheme of things, going days without contact wasn't a problem. That I knew my reaction was disproportionate. But that I didn't understand how he could just disappear and not realize it was kind of a big deal.  

He was frustrated and said he'd apologized. He was sorry for disappointing me (is that an actual apology?). That he didn't like my reaction and we should be able to go two days without texting (already granted!). He wondered if the problem wasn't the no contact but not letting me know to expect it? I agreed that was part of the problem.

Then he started talking about when we would see each other again and how our next date shouldn't include a sleepover.  That kind of stumped me because I thought we were done. I'd been so sure when we started the conversation that he wasn't right for me. I was still really confused by his behavior.  Up to the point of his silence, all the messages were clearly relationship bound--not a clever come on to persuade me to spend the night (which, by the way, was totally unnecessary). I thought I knew the terms of our engagement--and then they switched all around. Look, he can change his mind. It may be (still) that he lost some interest after getting to know me better--fair enough. But that didn't seem to be at all what he was saying when we talked. More that he doesn't really know how to modulate his speed. I'm not sure. We left things sort of open, though he suggested a specific activity and day for our next date.

Over the last few days, we've had very sparse communication. I sent him a couple of very short texts--a couple of times just a photo.  He initiated contact a couple of times. We didn't talk at all on Sunday (no, I didn't "wig out"). He got in touch on Monday. We confirmed our plans for this week. Our contact is friendly but decidedly more low key than before.  I don't know how I feel about him. I'm almost reluctant to go out with him this week--but I know I would be disappointed if he were to cancel. I will try and look at him with fresh eyes and figure out if I like him enough to bother with any of this.  Wait and see.

Grateful for: good, supportive friends. Oh, and having boy problems for a change!

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