Archive | December, 2014

The C Word: Compassion, not Cunt.

26 Dec

At 16:55 on Wednesday I arrived at daycare, just in time to pick up my boy. But he wasn’t there. And that’s because my mother had gotten confused, picked him up and took him to his dad’s, which she was supposed to do on Thursday. BD rose to the occasion, thankfully, left work and took our son to his apartment. So I had a spontanious free night, and I spent it working, doing laundry, cooking, learning new Russian phrases, and inviting D to spend the night with me, when he got off work at midnight.

But a couple of hours into my sudden freedom, I became extremely gloomy. It was nothing specific, it was the whole of it, this thing called life, which sometimes presents a bit more of a challenge than I feel I can handle. I stared into nothing for about half an hour. There was something sharp pinching me in my gut, hurting me physically, whispering all sorts of forgotten phrases into my ear: you’ll never get through this; you’re not strong enough; you’re not good enough; you don’t deserve any better; you’ve made too many mistakes which cannot be corrected and finally, the untilmate you’ll die an old spinster (and you’re allergic to cats too, you’ll make a horrible cat lady).

Snap out of it! I imagined myself slapping me accross the face.

And then something wonderful happened, something that made me realize how much I’d evolved in the last year. I felt compassion towards myself, and for once, I was able to be kind to myself. It is, objectively, a hard time for me, I thought. And I am entitled to my ups and downs. I’ve been through bad times, and I always get through. I’m stronger than I give myself credit for, but even the strongest have moments of weekness.

The first thing I did, was text my principle and tell him I wasn’t feeling well and needed to take the morning off the following day. I never miss work if I can help it. I’m the kind of teacher who comes to school with a stomach flu and infects everyone because she’s too much of a workaholic and a control freak to stay at home and let a sub teach her class. But this was neccessary. I took a long hot shower, wore comfy pajamas and made myself tea. And already, my mood had begun to improve.

Then I texted D: Hey, I know we’d said you’d come over tonight. But I just wanted to give you a heads up that I’ve been walking around with a dark cloud hovering over my head all day. I’d love to see you, but don’t bet on me being too much fun tonight. He texted back immediately: Of course I’m coming. You don’t have to be or do anything. I’ll just come give you a hug, and if you want, I’ll stay. Then he added: You should go to sleep, I’ll wake you when I get there.

And that’s what I did. I fell asleep at once. And when I woke up he was knocking on the door. He came in and hugged me. We stood there for a long time, holding each other. Then he stripped down to his T and boxers and pulled me into bed. There was no sex, just hugging and chatting, and kissing for a long time, after which we both fell asleep.

The extent to which I felt comforted, got me thinking about compassion. It’s easy for me to feel compassion towards my son. Everything is always forgiven and forgotten. He will forever be loved and contained. The other day though, my mother began crying in the middle of a conversation we were having and I found myself telling her off: “You can’t cry now. This is MY thing. You have no right to cry about this. You’re supposed to strong for me.” (Not me at my most compassionate, clearly.) I don’t know why I couldn’t show my mother the same compassion that I show my son every day, even when he is throwing cerial at me because it’s not the right kind, or the right bowl or the right spoon. I should have been kinder to my mom.

D may not say I love you, but he is able to show compassion towards me, to be comforting and to not expect anything of me when I’ve got nothing to give. It’s not the L word, but it has weight.

More remarkably, I’ve learned this week that I have he ability to be compassionate towards myself. To put judgment asside and be kind to myself at times like this, when kindness is all that is really neccessary.

My Marvelous Monday Evening Rondevouz

24 Dec

master and margarita

Master and Margarita, is THE book to be reading together, naked, in bed, after sex, with a cute Russian man by your side. Just in case you were looking to make plans for a weeknight, I highly recommend hiring a sitter, going out to dinner, watching Lonely Island clips on Youtube, having sex, and reading Russian literature together.

It sure beats the hell out of dinner and movie.

The 6 a.m Cry of the Other Woman

20 Dec

I hadn’t seen D for five days, which felt like forever. It’s only been five weeks since we started dating, but we’ve been seeing each other three or more times a week so it’s been pretty intense, the way it always is with me, I guess.

Ever since I blurted out the L word a couple of weeks ago, things have returned to normal, and I’ve been able to enjoy my time with him and languish over every sweet word or nickname or embrace. He’s Russian, and I’ve been called zayka, and slatkyia and krasaviza. He’s been saying that I make him feel alive again, that I’m special, that he loves being with me, that he misses me, that I’m fun, that he wants me. He even used the words “corrective experience” to describe our relationship. Moreover, we’ve begun acting a little more couple-ish, which I’ve been enjoying. And we’ve been talking a lot and sharing stuff. I’ve even talked to him about M, and he’s been asking, cautiously, how I’m doing and saying things like, “I know this is a rough time for you.”

Still, it will be a lie to say that I’m not anticipating his first “I love you” or dreading the notion that he might never say it. All signs clearly state that things are going well between us, and 90% of the time I am able to let go and not think about who likes who more and whether or not that presents an issue. My friend R suggested that I think about it like a gift that I’ve given him. It would be weird if I’d bought him a gift, like, cologne, and the next day he’d buy me perfume. I’ve given him a gift, saying that I feel love towards him. That’s a big gift. But he is constantly giving me gifts as well, other gifts, and that should be OK. And it is, most of the time.

I was discussing these five days apart. He was called in for reserve, and had a really crappy week. He was placed in a base up in the mountains where it’s freezing cold, and they had no warm meals or coffee or heating anywhere. While he was freezing his ass off, writing me texts about his fantasies of what he would do to me if he could have me then and there, I experienced one of the hardest weeks of my life too.

With the background of parent-teacher conferences, with 34 sets of parents to meet and talk to and be presentatble with, all the while keeping my classroom functioning as they rehearsed preformances for Grandparents Day and got into the types of fights and arguments that only 9-12 year olds can get into, I was busy attempting to say goodbye to one of the people closest to me in my life. It’s been 20 months since I first realized that we might not get to grow old together. But my mind seems to have that unique ability to only take in what it wants to, and completely ignore all the rest, so I think it’s only been in the last several weeks that I’ve begun accepting the fact that M has very little time left to share with me, with us. And this realization is devastating.

So on Monday, I was so easily agitated in class, that one of my co-teachers asked me to step out for a breather. When I did, I began crying and could not stop for a full hour. I walked around campus, hoping I would not run in to any children, and tried to calm myself down.

I recovered eventually, and I’m back to acceptence now. I feel better about it actually, like I really needed to let all of that out, and despite the unfortunate timing of my meltdown, I am glad it happened.

When D came back though, it felt like these five days, which objectively are not a long time, created a huge void between us. I hadn’t called him to share what I’d been going through. We texted a bit. I’d said encouraging stuff to him. I’d mentioned I’d had a few rough days. But I couldn’t talk about it. It was too personal, too powerful, and I was afraid I’d break down again if I mentioned it. I was also afraid that he might withdraw, because it might be too much for him to handle.

So seeing him again, feeling his embrace, it was comforting, and at the same time it felt a little like the beginning again. Which was not neccessarily a bad thing. Now, as the weekend progresses, and having spent some time with him, things are beginning to unwind. He came over to spend the night last night, after we each went to our separate dinners with family/friends, and when we met, close to midnight, we cuddled under the blanket and fell asleep at once. And for the first time in what felt like a long time I felt like everything was going to be OK, or more specifucally, like I was going to be OK.

Until 6 a.m.

His phone rang and with half closed eyelids I saw him fumble for it, saying, “at this hour, it could only be L”. L is the ex. Ex-wife and mother of his two girls. And indeed it was her. Having a melt down, crying on the phone. One of their girls won’t stop coughing, and she doesn’t know what to do. I could hear her desperation through the phone, her sobs and gasps. I remembered a time when I called my ex at 1 a.m. sobbing and gasping the same way, because our son had a high fever and I was freaked out. It was too much for me to handle so I went to the bathroom, and brushed me teeth, and drank some water, and then I basically sat in the kitchen and waited until I couldn’t hear his voice responding calmly and assertively to her hysteria any longer. I stepped back into the room. He looked at me with troubled eyes. “It’s OK.” He said, “She’s just coughing, It’s nothing. L panics easily. Her mother is right across the street, I told her to call her. She always calls me when something is wrong. She expects me to drop everything and go be there with them. And I can’t.”

I thought about telling him that he should go be with her. But I didn’t. “She’s adjusting.” I told D. “There will come a time when she doesn’t call every time something happens.”

“I hope you’re right.”

There was no point of going back to sleep. D works every other Saturday and he had to get ready. So we got up and had some coffee. And I tried to put the other woman’s 6 a.m. cry out of my mind. But I couldn’t help but remember my own meltdown of the week, which I hadn’t shared with him, and ask myself if there would ever come a time when he would love me and I would allow myself to lean on him.

The L Word

6 Dec

Sex makes me very emotional. The better it is, the more emotional I get. And so was the outcome last night.

We’d just shared an amazing sex session, wrapped in each other’s arms, still breathing heavily, when I said: “Don’t freak out. I love you.” I wasn’t panning on being the first to say it. But fuck it. I really wanted to say it and I wasn’t in the mood to restrain myself.

His response came quickly, almost as if he’d rehearsed it. “I think you’re amazing. I love being with you.” Then he held me tightly, so tightly that it was difficult to breathe. And he said, “It’s too early for me to say that.”

“I didn’t say it so you’d say it back.” I lied.

“I know.” He lied back.

Then we kissed and made out, and put it behind us. And it seemed to be OK. We spent the night together and had coffee in the morning, and told eachother what a good time we’d had. And made plans to meet again tonight.

And now, we’ll see.

Gone Girl

3 Dec

I’ve stepped over the edge. Gone girl.

The adrenaline rush every time he calls. The weakness in the knees when he’s near me. And thinking about him constantly. And daydreaming. And wondering when he’s going to tell me that he loves me. And wondering if I can hold off and not be the first to say it.

Holding him, and feeling like everything’s going to be OK. Listening to his stories about his family, things he’s seen and done and felt, and longing to hear more, to know everything there is to know about this man. And admiring his strength, his commitment, his sense of humor, his intelligence, his sensitivity, his subtility.

And recognizing in him the same fragility that I have in me, the insecurity that comes after betrayal. And wanting to make it go away by loving him.