Friday, May 6, 2011

of other men

Well. In case anyone is burningly curious about whether I have run into the man from the earlier post, yes. I did. Today. Today has been one of those days where I am just sad. Just sad, without rage or irritability or anything else. Just sadness, heavy and pure. The dog and I spent most of the day outside so he could chase rocks and I could transplant things, leaving the garden intermittently to shove the broody chicken off the infertile eggs. I wanted a coffee. Well. I didn't. I have another cold, and I wanted to go back to bed. But I also needed to do a few errands, and wanted a coffee first, to get through them. I am so heavy with sad today, I didn't want to take the chance of running into anyone who might want to talk to me, so I waited until late afternoon to go. The place was nearly empty. I sat, drank my coffee, read my book.

Guy from last week came in and sat down. This time, I didn't feel awkward. I felt calm. And sad.  I wondered if it showed. I wondered if he was the kind of person who would notice. What was different for me this time was that I felt more prepared, more familiar with how it felt to leave big gaps in my side of the "information." With the weight of sad on me so clear today, I felt more tender towards myself, I guess. We talked for a bit, mostly he talked. I knew he was flirting. I stepped over whatever he laid down. As Matt and I used to say, it's not that I don't recognize the social cues, it's just that I don't care to acknowledge them.

After I left and did my errands, I kept imagining all the questions that could be asked, by him or anyone, and how I might answer them. Last week, that completely messed me up and made me panic. Today, I know that I am practicing. Practicing, in my mind, and with people who don't know me yet, how I answer things. How I share who I am, how I say hello. Not just in love. That may not be part of my road again this time around. But how I greet anyone. The panic gave me a bit of an opportunity to remind myself to slow down a bit, to trust myself.

So. No panic. Just watching. Just noticing. Calm. Still sad.



  1. you know I have to imagine things first ... act them out in my head before I do them ... for example I visualized lighting the fuse on the first firework that spread Cliff's ashes ... it works. If I can visualize it / practise it ... I can DO it :-)

    So I think what you're doing is a sound idea. Let us know if it helps xxx

  2. This is what I do - I 'practice'. It doesn't matter if I get it wrong, because (and this sounds worse than I mean it), the people I 'practice' with don't really matter. As in, it doesn't matter what they think of me.

  3. DD - exactly. They don't actually matter. Sounds worse, actually true.

    Boo - reigning myself in to not be entirely neuro-biology geeky in my own comments section, but imagining is a biological survival strategy: our minds imagine certain events so we can test them out. You can take risks in the mind that would be potentially dangerous in the body. By imagining, you rehearse your options and abilities - then your body knows what it can do.

  4. oops. early morning word choice. Reining. Not assumed royalty.

  5. I've been thinking about this a lot. Your panic made me panic too. For me the idea of having to explain who I am to someone new is just not worth it. Yet anyway. I don't even think I'm capable, and just don't know who that person is. A very odd place to be. I never felt this way before. I don't like feeling so defined by this, what has happened to us & how I feel about it, although clearly, it is the truth.

    The other day I found out this (married) guy I used to know/like/had major chemistry /"history" with years ago was playing out in a club the other night. Had these fantasies of going down there to watch him play and hanging around at closing time, and then freaked out and stayed home. So that's good I guess. Your description of biological survival strategy makes me think phew! dodged that bullet!