A lot has been going on lately. A lot, and also not much at all. I've not really been sharing because I'm not sure how much I want to share. Only a precious few know the full story. Even a few who think they know the whole story don't really know precisely the fragility of the matter.
TCO and his mom came to eat dinner with my family on Christmas Eve. Besides their being served severely out-of-date Dr. Pepper this seemed to go fairly well, or at least as well as I could have hoped. The next day, Christmas, was also Sir TCO's 21st birthday. The morning my children and I spent at home, unwrapping some gifts, until Torrin's grandpa arrived to cart him off to Tecumseh (small town about an hour away) for an overnight stay. Mira and I went over to TCO's house for breakfast after that, staying until her Waste-Of-Oxygen dad came to pick her up. That afternoon, he, his brother, TCO's roommate, my mother and I went to see a movie. Alien Vs. Predator, which was dependably gory and unnecessarily heartless. I went back over to his house for dinner. After a couple of hours spent lounging around watching movies he dropped the bombshell that he was hitching a ride back to Wisconsin with his mom and brother the next morning.
Well, not really okay. I was pissed. I had been looking forward to this boy's 21st birthday for several months by then. Some possibly fabulous plans for New Year's had been made and fallen through, but I was eagerly awaiting spending the night with him regardless of a lack of luxurious locale. Yeah, so, piss on that, missed that boat.
That night, I had had a texted conversation with Torrin's dad, which ended with Torrin's dad saying he was surprised TCO had not said that he loved me, and that he should've said it by now. Young, inexperienced, or not.
The next couple of times I talked with TCO on the phone he stressed that is was important for him to spend time with his family. Okay? This is a point of contention how? Have I ever expressed contempt for spending time with family? Of course not. I like his family, I would never prevent him from wanting to visit them. My problem was being ditched last minute. At first, he seemed responsive enough. He was somewhat apologetic, sometimes at least. But gradually he stopped responding to texts. That's been a key means of communication between he and I over the past five months. I started getting suspicious that something more was going on. My texted messages became less friendly and more contrary. Finally, while at the theatre with my son on New Years Day I sent a message asking if it would be better if I did not text at all. His reply? He didn't know how to answer. I responded that that was answer enough and I would leave him alone. Inside, I crumbled. I'd thought that maybe he just needed a break, some time to himself, but this was seeming more serious than even that. I sent a frantic text to another friend, whose biting reply cut to my heart. Doomsday wagering battle, brain sloshing around, bubbles wavering in my blood, I imagined the worst. Later that evening, I sent TCO a message asking if he wanted to come to my house to get his things, or should I just drop them off?
That night my phone rang. My heart sank. All that time I just wanted to talk to him, and kept getting no reply...this was what it took to get his attention.
We were on the phone for about three hours. The discourse opened with his preface that he hadn't wanted to do this over the phone, but...he'd been frustrated for awhile. Frustrated that I couldn't talk about things that upset me, frustrated that I couldn't do things with him whenever he wanted, frustrated that this frustrated him. Said he felt selfish, since he knows I have kids and he knows they are the most important thing to which I must attend. Said he wanted to be able to just be with me, while concurrently understanding that I just can't do that. And then I complicate matters by not being able to talk.
I'm a pain in the ass. I realize this fully, but I don't know how to fix it. My brain shuts down. I can't think. When I am upset, it takes eons or millenia to formulate a coherent thought. Sometimes something pops into my head fairly punctually, but those are the sort of thoughts that must be fully evaluated before being approved for discharge. I'm not exactly sure why. I think it's a culmination of many factors, including having poor role models (my mom is also horrible about talking about things, although in a slightly different manner) and as a defense tactic. In my relationship with Voldemort, my responses tended to elicit uproarious and occasionally violent replies, no matter how diplomaticly I attempted to craft my statements. Everything I said was viciously contorted. An uttered truth might validate a slap across the face, but at the very least anything I offered was met with cruel accusations and criticism of my character. Experiences predating Voldemort warped my perceptions of normal relations between men and women, further muddying clarity.
I've never been good at arguing. Never in my life have I relished a good debate, due to the fact that I simply can't keep up. I was always labelled as a smart kid, in the gifted program, advanced classes and such, but "quick wit" has never been a characteristic of mine. I'm able to understand and evaluate, but not immediately. A therapist suspected that there may be a neurological cause. That I don't know, but I can say that the speedy shifts of subject in heated discussions leave me drawing a blank. And when there's a live person, emotions barred, before me awaiting an answer, the pressure builds. Whatever I want or believe is totally secondary to first knowing what I am supposed to do. I only want to know what is expected of me.
Even more frustrating to the opposing party, I generally feel that it's obvious what I want. Expressing what I want or how I feel about something seems silly because isn't it obvious? I just need to know what to do. Tell me what you want me to do. Shoot, look at my profile on Facebook, in the About Me section. "First, you tell me what you want to hear, then, I'll tell it." Given no parameters, I'm lost.
And now? I am lost. The conversation on New Years with TCO was inconclusive, although it seemed evident to me that he wanted to break up...so...why should I bother saying anything? His mind was already made up, and I'm not going to change his mind. I'm not persuasive. Isn't it obvious? Isn't it obvious that I don't want to break up with him? I guess not. And he throws in there that yes, he did love me, he was in love with me. Wasn't that what I wanted?
Yes, it was.
I was struck by how everything he referred to between he and I was past tense. He loved me. He was in love with me. He wanted it to work out. Around 3am he gave up. I was tired too, but saying goodbye? Was like granting my approval of the relationship dissolution.
Our conversation the next night produced similar results. My silences were shorter in length and fewer in number, but still present. I'm sorry, I'm frustrating. I don't mean to be, and I don't know how not to be. I only wish I knew earlier how seriously it was affecting the dynamic. I'm agreeable, I want to do the right thing. What is the right thing? If you really love something, let it go? I've always been too selfish for that. Maybe I don't say it, but I feel it.
I haven't yet said that I love him too. Because I'm not in the past tense in feeling that way, but I don't want to be the only one who does. In the past couple months...I've wondered, it is worth it? Should I try harder? What is really going on here? I don't want to unnecessarily put myself out on the line for a cause that noone else believes in. I wasn't going to be the first one to utter the l-word (truly a four-letter word). I'm much too much of a chickenshit.
He's still in Wisconsin, working on a way back. I've offered to drive; I shouldn't have. Not that I wouldn't do it, not that I don't want to help. I do, but my offering exposes me a little bit more. Maybe too much. Now, when I need to leave him alone.
(And this is only the half of it.)
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