The New M.E. Generation











The week after the lunch, I reached out to LZ1 as per the usual. The texting continued during the morning commute and work hours, but brief.

Believe I tried calling him during the weekend with no luck. He replied that couldn’t answer because ‘was underneath his car wrenching it with a buddy’. They were to work on it for some more hours and then go eat. Next day, same thing.

Following week I was getting off of work early because of an event that was to cause major traffic jams. Texted if he wanted to meet up with me; he said that ‘was also allowing his employees to leave early although he was staying, and had an event early evening he couldn’t get out off’.

Anyways, my car was giving me trouble and had to get it serviced, which was stressing me out. Had invested in major repairs 6 months earlier and now it had new problems.

He knew about a minor repair around the time I met him, to which he had followed up. But didn’t tell him of this one because his distancing was already happening.

For starters, he was no longer taking the initiative of texting me. Then one day when I took a selfie during my lunch break, instead of replying with the usual words of ‘gorgeous’ or ‘beautiful’ with some cute emojis, he simply said ‘nice!’. That felt like getting splashed with cold water.

The following week he finally underwent the scheduled colonoscopy on a Friday; he had said it was supposed to be on Saturday. His explanation was that ‘it was moved up a day’. His mom was to drive him home.

Tried calling him that night (thinking for sure would get a hold of him), but it went to voicemail. His excuse: ‘he was sore all over.’ As ‘so sore’ you can’t answer your phone??

Tried again next day; same situation. I got upset and left him a message: “Wow, you really meant it when you said that you don’t like talking on the phone!!! Whatever. Bye.” His response was again ‘still feeling pain’. Yeah, like you being a pain in the ass, literally.

Believe another week went by when I last attempted to call him on the weekend. This time there was no response from him in any way. I then knew it was the end of (nothing, I guess).

It was on Monday, a few minutes before midnight, when he decided to finally ‘show face’: “Hi, I’m sorry I have been avoiding you, but I can’t see you anymore. I’m in a bad place in my life right now and I can’t give you the attention you deserve, nor do I want to be in any kind of relationship. I’m sorry I strung this along for two weeks, I thought I would emerge from this one problem, but another has surfaced which is even worse. I don’t feel like talking about it either. Between work and this latest thing it would not be fair to you. You’re really nice woman, attractive and smart. You deserve a lot better than me, that’s for sure. I’m very sorry. Hope you understand.”

I was both upset and not. Was because he turned out to be another coward who didn’t have the balls to have a conversation with me. Not because this repeated facade has become the norm among the men that are crossing my life. The ‘Surprise, surprise’ sarcasm still stands here.

If this text message was to play out in a movie, it would probably go something like this.

I didn’t respond immediately. I allowed myself 2 days to really think it over. Ever heard the expression ‘the quiet before the storm’?

“First of all, that you don’t want to be in a relationship is a lie. You don’t want to be with me. I bet you the little money I have on the bank that the day you meet someone that interests you, you will move heaven and earth to make it work. That you’re going through a bad moment? So is everyone else. The ‘bad timing’ is a fallacy. It’s a cop-out.

Second, it’s an insult that you tell me I deserve better when you don’t know anything about my life to make that statement.

Third, you don’t want to talk about your problem? Fine. Remember my words that one day it will explode on you like a firecracker on a 4th of July.

Fourth, that I’m pretty, etc., is the same thing as getting a consolation prize. You’re using it to try to make me feel better. Cop-out.

Fifth, not answering calls is immature and cowardly. You’re not a millennial and neither am I. Especially sending a message almost at midnight. Face things. Don’t hide. Get updated. Grow up. Another cop-out.

I’m sure that you got disenchanted the day of the lunch. And not giving yourself the chance to see if at least a friendship could happen looks bad on you. Your loss. I’m worth a lot more than you cared to know.

Last but not least, life it’s not just about you, and you, and you. One day you’ll realize what you missed on. You’ll remember me when that happens. Good luck.”

 

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{November 21, 2016}   The Swipe 9 – The great divide

The dinner at Cameron’s place ended in a good note in spite of the traffic jam setback. We continued talking on the phone whenever possible, and he even came twice to my apartment for dinner on the only free day he had of those 2 weeks he was busy with his daughters. He was even nice enough to bring some food for both.

Ironically, when these weeks were up, a long weekend came along (meaning he would be totally available for me), but I already had previous plans to go on vacation during this time, making me feel again that the universe was trying to tell me something.

“I can’t believe it,” said he, “I’m getting 2 weeks off from my daughters and you’re going to be traveling.”

This may sound very movie-like, where the female character decides to ditch the trip last minute and, along with the significant other, turns the time into the most romantic one ever, all ending with the most cliche scene you could ever conceive.

But I know better than that. It’s not worth giving up your plans in this day and age for any guy, even less in the very beginning of anything. It’s true that you definitely need to ‘make the effort’, as he very well said. But all at its right time (like after my vacation).

Hey, maybe the universe is warning me not to give away too much, too soon, with him.

Still, I tried to add some positiveness to the situation by telling him that, “I will miss you”, to which he replied, “no… you will have so much fun, you won’t think about anything else”.

‘Ok, if you say so,’ I thought to myself. ‘I’ll just wipe you out completely from my thoughts’, which didn’t happen entirely.

I wasn’t planning to mention him to the people I stayed with, but when asked if anything romantically was happening with me, I decided to share a photo of him and say how well things have gone so far.

They weren’t that impressed with him. Maybe they decided to hold off on the comments since it was so early in the game. Or maybe they saw that this didn’t have much of a chance, like pretty much what has happened before with so many other guys. Whatever the reasons, it wasn’t a warm welcoming.

Actually, it wasn’t even lukewarm, but more like cold. So much that I didn’t even text or called Cameron during the 4 days I was away.

I don’t recall talking to him or meeting with him upon my return. What I do remember is that I met up with Dina for Sunday brunch. Turns out we had a trip planned for the following month, and I had some documents I needed to personally hand to her.

I was unsure about commenting her about Cameron, but knowing her well, her usual remark of ‘tell me about your boyfriends’ would be part of the order of the day, as sure as the side of bacon I always get.

“Actually, I’ve being seeing a guy called Cameron,” said I to her. I explained my connection to him and how he learned about our friendship after seeing her photos in my social media.

Dina was surprised at my revelation, confirming the interview story (“I met with him and he said he should have been the one doing the interview. Apparently he was brought to the U.S. with that job he had, but it wasn’t long before he realized that all that was promised and/or offered to him wasn’t happening”), the encounters at the kitchen (“it’s funny how he always brings this huge bowl of salad for lunch; that’s basically what he eats every day, ha ha ha”), and that they don’t really speak to each other.

Dina was more excited than I was; I have been keeping a low profile all along, knowing this could all end one day to the next. She is the first to tell me not to take things so seriously, but she’d have had some relationships in the past (no marriages or kids yet). I haven’t had one that I could account for.

She says she takes things in stride and not so personal when her love affairs end, and that I should do the same. She may be right, but I’m at least 7 years older than her, and at my stage when I’ve started the big 5-0 decade and menopause, you don’t take things so lightly any more.

“It will happen this year”, have said she in other occasions regarding finding love and having a family. I used to think this way before reaching the 2 previously mentioned milestones. Now I know that the older you get, the more difficult things get to be.

Worst part is that they change you (for better or for worse), which has made me become somewhat distant from Dina, as I believe I no longer feel and think the way we used to. Now I relate more to other women who share the same experiences as I do.

And speaking of change and Cameron, I wonder how this applies to him. Is he willing to make the necessary ones for his own wellbeing, and that of his daughters, to overcome the divorce, or is he thinking he doesn’t need to because the cause of the failure of the marriage supposedly falls entirely on the wife?

Is he in denial that the divorce will actually happen? And after the affair with the 24 year old, what adjustments will he do for future relationships, if that? How will all these affect me?

Oh Lord, I need another vacation! So happy that it’s happening very soon!

 



{November 14, 2016}   The Swipe 8 – Two to tango

In spite all these major details from him, the night went along well, so much that we were basically the last two present at the bar when it was already time to close.

Neither one of us specifically verbalized that ‘I would like to see you again’. Cameron did show an interest in getting together again, but it had more to do when he would be available to do so.

He mentioned that he was going to have an irregular schedule with his daughters for the next 2 weeks of having them every other day, including the weekends, because of something that had to do with his spouse. So the choices were to either meet on the free weekdays, or wait all the way until these weeks were up.

Thinking that he’s most probably on a tight budget, I suggested going the inexpensive route of cooking dinner at either one’s home.

I went as far as telling him that I had a bbq that hasn’t been used for years and would be nice to bring out of retirement, to which he totally was all up for.

‘Let’s do the effort’ was how he basically summarized it. True, and at least he’s talking about 2 people doing this together. ‘It takes 2 to tango’ applied here perfectly, since he’s from that very same country for which it’s famous for.

The next time we decided to meet was to be at his place after work, as he was to cook dinner for me. I agreed to this because I wanted to see where and how he lived (distance of his home from mine, learn if he was a tidy person, etc.) before I decided to invite him home (or not) afterwards.

I believe it was on a Tuesday (he wouldn’t have his daughters that day) that we agreed to meet and, of course, the universe throws something at me of ‘biblical proportions’ that it was either putting me (or situation) to the test, or warning me in advance that this might not work out all together.

To begin with, it started raining late in the afternoon with such magnitude, I was wondering if I didn’t get the memo that a major storm was visiting town. There was so much water that it created a huge traffic jam way before my leave time.

All I could do was stare out my office window, praying that this would go away soon, while keeping Cameron up-to-date on this situation.

I was feeling upset because something always happens with a guy, always. And Cameron had made his effort of leaving work at a descent time to make dinner for me, and now I didn’t even know if I was to make it.

It all cleared out some time after 8pm, but in spite of this hour and driving on the expressway, you always hit traffic, thus delaying me for a good 45 minutes (including finding his location for the first time).

When I finally reached my destination, I took a look around. The area wasn’t bad and his building wasn’t that impressive either. It was located next to the water, but could tell it didn’t even had a pool.

Cameron came downstairs to guide me towards a parking spot. When I was done he says to me, “I wished my apartment didn’t face the street. I could enjoy this view every night.” ‘Ah, yeah, if you say so…’, I thought to myself. Blame it on me growing up in the Caribbean for the lack of excitement.

Upon entering the building, I noticed it had its years, and the decor (or lack of thereof) didn’t help either, making it look somewhat sad. His apartment was really simple and hasn’t been updated that much other than doing the necessary needed to make it livable.

It was a one-bedroom/bath with kitchen and family. For furniture, he had a dining table, a sofa, and drawer beds for his girls. His room only had a bed and night table. I took a peak at his closet and it was full of t-shirts, jeans and casual footwear. I wondered if these were all he had or there were some other stuff left at his former home.

In the conversation we had during dinner, he mentioned that the apartment ‘was economical’, which made sense considering how much a divorce can cost.

We continued on the topic of how to deal with oneself during a crisis, and he said that he was meeting with a therapist. One of the things he has been discussing is that he has gotten lost as a person when his children were born.

I told him that this is what usually happens, but more to women than men; that if he has been involved in raising his children, kudos for him, as men normally don’t change their agendas. Women are expected to change their name and personality, to then become a wife and mother, morphing into something that many times doesn’t even remotely resemble who they were when getting married.

His main mode of therapy is writing movie scripts, an interest he had neglected for quite a while. He explained that he gets up like an hour earlier than he used to, writes like a page or so, then makes breakfast (and wakes up the girls when around), cleans up, gets them to school, followed by him getting to work.

He says he is taking more advantage of the day and feeling more focused, plus reviving a side of him he had almost lost. I replied to him that ‘anything that you believe is positive for you, go for it.’

The next day I texted my bestie for her opinion about my current state of affairs. She kept saying, ‘go with the flow’. ‘I heard men from that country are great lovers and cooks,’ added she.

I know I have to take things slowly, but, unfortunately, this guy is going through a nasty divorce, of which I don’t know when it will get resolved. After that is the collateral damage he will still continue to deal with, plus his children, work, and adjusting to life again as a single man. Add to the mix that failed 4-month relationship with the 24 year old.

Sounds familiar? Yeah. Almost like me (minus the kids). It’s been more than 5 years since being single and I’m still figuring things out.

Question is, if I keep going out with him, will he be willing to ‘take a step further’ and include me in his life, and if so, will I be able to ‘dance to his beat’?

Oh Lord, why does my existence always feels like a sad country song? Time to bring out that good ol’ guitar and violin please!



et cetera