August 21, 2008

Peeling Back the Layers

I do a very good job of ignoring unpleasant things. For a week I have been ignoring my computer and ignoring my blog, not because they are unpleasant, but because writing often makes me face myself. It makes me look squarely at the things which are going on in my life. I don’t really want to look.

So many good things have been happening to me. My job is going well. I had a lovely send off. They got me cake and a card and sang (which was odd, but much enjoyed). I got a little vacation up in the mountains staying with a friend at the center. My drive home was smooth. My cat is even happy to see me (though she won’t admit it and continues to grump, but she follows me around). I’m back in Nebraska and getting ready for a new semester. My mother took tomorrow off so we can do something fun. My birthday is coming up in just a few days.

But I feel like I left something behind. I left someone behind. I’m not one to be mooning over a man. Or so I keep telling myself. We’re just friends. Friends who are sometimes more than friends, at least, when we’re less than five hundred miles apart. Ah, shit.

I wanted that serious relationship, didn’t I? Wasn’t that what I was crying over when I got back to Nebraska last summer? Did it materialize in the interim? Nope. So I’m not tied down this spring when I head back to Colorado and that more than friendship has ample opportunity to resume. And it’s good. It’s more than good. Things go well. He’s grown. I’ve grown. We’re both in better places in our lives. We’re happier, easier on each other. We both learned a lot last summer. We’re comfortable around each other. That might not seem like much, but it’s the most I’ve ever had. It’s wonderful.

But, shit. What the hell am I supposed to do about it? We don’t exactly want the same things. I’ll be honest with myself. I want him. And he…well, he wants me when I’m around. Otherwise he wants to stay in Colorado, at the mountain center for two more years at least. Which is fine; I think it’s a good place for him. I’m going to be here in college for two more years anyway. But he doesn’t want a long distance relationship. I can respect that, even understand it. The trouble is, my insecurity gets to talking. My ego butts in. Even if I were there or he were here, then what? Would he even want a serious relationship at this time? I kinda doubt it. He needs to grow into who he is as a person. He’s four years younger than I am. That sounds like so little time, but when you’re a young adult, so much can happen in four years. I got that four years and so much changed. Doesn’t he deserve the same?

I can be patient. I’m good at that. The question is, should I? It’s not a very good policy to pin your hopes on what someone may or may not feel or want years from now. Especially when what they may or may not want in the present is questionable. I’m not going to sit around on my ass pining, that’s for damn sure. I've spent enough time waiting on that boy. (He's never on time.)

Damn. I’ve just been to one too many weddings this year. My cousin Jeff. My brother. But the coup de grace was Stalios and Jermaine, who got married in the Great Stupa of Dharmakaya three days ago with their families, friends, and all the staff of Shambhala Mountain Center in attendance. A Greek from Texas married a Chinese girl from Toronto in a Tibetan stupa in Colorado. It was very awesome.

I don’t want to get married. Not right this minute. But damn, it would be nice to have someone to talk to on a regular basis. It would be nice to have someone to tease and bug and who will bug me in return. It would be nice to have someone who will smile real big when they see me and greet me with a kiss even when they had a bad day. It would be nice to have someone to wake up to in the morning. Like the last few mornings, the last few before I left and drove to Omaha yesterday.

My mother bought a new bed for the guest room. It is a very pretty and fits so nicely in that room. It is a twin sized daybed. Absolutely no chance of sharing that with anyone. Even the cat thought it was too small for two last night. So it was very lonely as I went to bed last night, not only because they bed wasn’t big enough for two, but because the person I would have specifically liked to share it with was not there.

Oy vey. My brain is turning to mush. Absolute mush. Here I am obsessing over what cannot be changed. Damn, I’m glad he doesn’t read my blog. He would probably keel over.

I did realize one thing, while I was watching Jermaine and Stalios getting married, with all their friends there, all these other couples who are officially couples, some even though they live far apart. You shouldn’t fail to tell someone you love them simply because you are afraid of whether or not they want to hear it. I tell people I love them all the time. I tell my friends and my family. But I never told him, because popular culture dictates that when you’re in an even remotely romantic relationship is a guy (especially one as casual as ours), you don’t tell them you love them first because you don’t want to scare them away. You don’t say that thing because they will freak out and run screaming into the hills never to be seen or heard from again. Right?

Well, I figured out that was a piss poor reason and I’d never let pop culture dictate my behavior before, so I did tell him that I loved him. He did not run screaming into the very beautiful and completely accessible surrounding hills. He commented that I’d never said that before, kissed me, told me he loved me, and then went back to work while I got in my car and left. Totally anticlimactic. Not even any descent theme music. And yet, totally satisfying all the same.

Sad, but in that good sort of way where you actually feel that heartbroken feeling Chogyam Trungpa is always talking about, that sore spot that happens when you start to peel back the layers of protection that insulate you from the world. And that leads to a curious sort of hope. Not a hope that someday he’ll want all the same things I want and we’ll live happily ever after. Just a hope that comes from knowing that even if that doesn’t happen, things will be okay. Things will be better than okay, they’ll be good.

Because, basically, the world is good.


wolfie185 said...

Welcome back to our beautiful state, sure it isn't the wonderful Rockie mountains but there is still plenty of beauty if you slip off down a country road or river road, not to mention just looking around at the nature in front of our eyes. I was in Lincoln last Saturday, dropped my daughter off at the mall on O st. to do some school clothes shopping while I took my granddaughter with me to the Indian grocery on 17th and then to Best Buy, it was worth the trip to Lincoln since she saved money on clothes and I bought the new Billy Bragg disc which isn't available in Kearney; for a town with a University in it Kearney stinks for varity in shopping.
The first thing I thought of when I read the title to your post was "Shrek"; Shrek; " Ogre's are like onion's", Donkey; "you mean they are smelly and make you cry" Shrek; " no, they have layers, onions have layers, Ogres are like onions because they have layers" Ogre's aren't the only ones who have layers we all do; the outside layers are tough rather hard to get through, protective. Keep pealing away the the softer the layers get until you get to the soft sweet heart of the onion, unless one has a major psycological problem all of has a sweet tender center. I think about my dad, all his life he was tough, strong and for the most part void of any visable emotions accept anger, as he got older he would on occasion show a rare glimpse of love for us or his grandkids, now with the dementia getting worse and possible some Alzheimer's setting in he has become very child like, he is afraid of being left alone for too long, he is fragile weighing around 90lbs, he can still walk and bath himself somewhat but that isn't going to last very much longer, point is; 30 years ago I would have never believed I would be parenting the harsh man I was raised with. What does this have to with relationships, everthing and nothing, just my thougts on human layers.
As for relationships, they stink emotionally. Probably the hardest emotion to deal with is being attracted to someone with uncertain factors involved. I go with the age old adage "if it is meant to be it will work out" you do the footwork and leave the rest up to time and nature. From my experience you are doing the right thing by not rushing, I have caused myself more self inflicted wounds by rushing into relationships romantic or otherwise than I care to admit. I have to understand what my expectations are in relationship and if they are selfish, I like how Thich explains this it makes sense to me and has been helpful lately when I have thought about asking a couple of people out or thinking I might want to know them better. Am I willing to be a 100% equal partner in the relationship, no hostage taking, accepting and giving? Just a tidbit on my thougths on relationships. Remember "To Thine Own Self Be True" and follow your heart.
I did love what you wrote about pop culture dictates. If pop cultures had any intelligence we would be listening to Ani Defranco, Indigo Girls, Billy Bragg, Keb Mo on our IPods and not Fergie, Beyonce and the rest, o.k. so I still have not rid myself of being overly opinionated;D
On a lighter note; have you heard of a book called "Lamb the Gospel According to Biff Christ Childhood Pal" by Chistopher Moore? It is a hilarious take on the life of Jesus from the age of 6 until his death as told by Levi who is called Biff Jesus's best friend and lifelong companion. There is a bit of frat boy humor that gets annoying but over all it is a kill!!
Take Care little Sister

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