Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Girl's Trip

They had to be up at 4am to make their flight.

Strike 1.

The sun rose as their plane made their decent into the city.  She tried to keep up with conversation, the energy and excitement of the trip.

They got into town and she ordered a Rideshare, who promptly called her and asked how many people she had, and said he couldn't accommodate her and she needed to cancel the ride.  The other girls yelled at her as soon as she had told them about it, like the guy had been her fault.

Strike 2.

They got to the hotel, that was of course not ready to check them in yet.  They spent time in the lobby talking about nothing for what seemed like hours.  Her introvert battery was quickly drained.

They decided to go to brunch early, and she decided to see how far she could walk before Mo came to pick her up at noon.  According to her Fitbit, about 17,000 steps later, Mo came to pick her up with his wife and baby, and they headed to their favorite sushi restaurant.

It was the first time meeting his baby, and he reached out for her immediately, which made her feel good.  She needed to make time to go down and visit him, maybe later on in the summertime.

They met up with other friends and had an amazing time eating.  Back at the hotel, the girls had gotten drunk at brunch, and all started to text her that they wanted pizza.  She had just gorged herself on sushi and didn't appreciate that they all started to gang up on her, texting five or six times in a row.  She made a decision to ignore their texts, because otherwise she would end up back at the hotel in a rage.

They were drunk and cranky when she got back, and she left an hour later to go out drinking with Mo.  They laughed, talked, bar hopped, and had a great time.  She missed him so much, and when his wife asked if the schools were better in her town, she said yes without even knowing if they were.  It would be amazing if they moved to where she lived.

Things were getting a little better with him and his wife, and she was glad they seemed to be working things out.  She talked to him about her relationship woes, and they commiserated with more cocktails.

She didn't get to see him the rest of the weekend, and spent much of it on her own exploring her old haunts.  The girls got more and more drunk and belligerent as the weekend wore on, and it was testing her nerves.

Goldie got upset that her PJs had gone missing, but the maids had been in and made the beds, and must have put it with all the other clothes that were lying on the other bed.  When she suggested this she was berated again by the girls for how stupid of an idea that was.

Strike 3.  She was done.

Goldie got upset that she wasn't helping them look.  "They are lost forever." She stated coldly.  Later they of course found it in the exact place they had told them to look.  They responded by calling her sensitive...because that's the best way to make a sensitive person feel better, to call attention to their sensitivity. 

The entire rest of the trip she became cold and unresponsive, just waiting for it all to be over.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Another Bow

The honesty and straightforward conversation between her and Piz had been refreshing.  He was fast becoming the person she most preferred to talk to.  It was so easy, and while he was still with his girlfriend, still safe.

They'd hung out a few times without issue, having great conversation about what the future held for them.  He was kicking around the idea of going on in his schooling and getting a second Masters, but then would still be living with his horrible girlfriend.

They met up one night with plans that just continued to go wrong for them, and ended up at the bar at the base of her building after dinner. 

She dropped their conversation rudely when she realized the bar had a giant blind sheepdog hanging around.  After she was done playing with the dog, they took a couple of seats at the bar and ordered their cocktails. 

"So, I graduate in May...and I've decided to move back to where I'm originally from.  I'm gonna move in with my two best friends again, back to the couch again for now and we are going to find a three bedroom house for all of us while I figure things out."

Damn, another one bites the dust.  She was going to have to go back on the dating scene again, she felt like she was losing them all over the place.

"Have you told your girlfriend yet?"

"....No.  She's going to get so pissed off, it's going to be a huge mess."  She scowled at him.

"Of course it is, she believes that you love her but you are not only going to break up with her, but move out of the state.  That's going to be a lot to deal with at once."

"She's going to yell at me that I didn't tell her that I didn't actually apply for the Masters program.  The application deadline was in February."

"Well, she'll be right.  You didn't tell her.  You need to start owning up to your own cowardice.  We never like to admit that we did the wrong things, but we have to admit it, own up to it.  If you can have sex with the person, then you should be able to talk about anything and everything.  You and I can."

She admitted she was going to miss him and the friendship they had managed to form despite everything.  He admitted that she was one of the only people he could talk to this about, his dad and his friends had little experience or sympathy.  She said she'd always be there for him.

A few days later he said he'd broken up with his girlfriend.  She had lost her mind at first but then calmed down the next day, and everything seemed to be fine.

"I want to see you at least a few more times before I leave" He said.  She said that would be nice, though considerably more dangerous now.

Friday, March 30, 2018

Questions? Comments? Concerns?

"Oh, you've got stuff written down, like on actual paper?  By all means, go ahead!"  KSL said jovially as he busied himself in the kitchen.

She pulled out her two pieces of paper, the third copy of each one.  She had thought of things, written and rewritten each one.  One was business, the other was emotional.  She hadn't realized she'd set it up that way until days afterward.

There were a few questions from both that made her nervous to ask, but she forged ahead anyway.  She guessed that it helped the conversation with her head in her notes and his in the cooking.

"I wanted to start with a warning.  I *will* be cranky about stupid every day things for a bit while I adjust back to real life.  I have literally been living in a tower where I can walk to my job that I love.  I haven't really had to worry about everyday things like traffic and parking in a long time.  You need to be patient with me."

"And because everyone has been telling me lately that I'm negative and only see the bad side, I'm going to start with the positives list I've made."  He seemed amused by the fact that most of her positives were the fact that she wasn't going to be his old roommate.  He laughed at her point that if he was ever feeling down she would put googly eyes on everything in the fridge.  His laugh made her stop on the rest of the list.  There were invisible lines she didn't want to cross.  If they were going to make this work she had to watch that any action she took wasn't taken as a relationship action.

As soon as the idea of living together came up, they had been apologetic to one another more than usual.  Supportive even.  It had also felt honest, and nice.

"I know you are stressed and this is a terrible situation...but living with KSL with boundries?!?!?  Oh man.  That would be a non-stop back and forth pseudo relationship don't you think?" Dawn had retorted to her over text one day.

She'd responded "I know it's silly, especially for a cynic like me, to think this will have a positive outcome.  But I'm trying to be outside of my comfort zone in order to find happiness.  I spent so much of my life closed off from every experience.  It might suck, but it will be a life experience that I'll grow from no matter how it plays out.  And I honestly do have a feeling it will be okay."

She went to the other list with KSL, asking about quirks of the current apartment, then got to another nerve-inducing question.

"Are you...well do you want to--"

"Use your words"

She scowled, hating when he said that.  She knew it was a joke, meant to be lighthearted...but it felt too much like the passive aggressive things that came out of her mother's mouth anytime she spoke.

"Do you want to stay here?  In this apartment?"

As it turned out, he wasn't quite married to the place after all.  Moving would be annoying for sure, but he wasn't completely opposed to the idea.  Emotionally, she felt like a fresh place would at least feel like both of theirs, instead of her moving onto his turf that he would already feel was his.  She'd always feel a bit like an outsider.  He had shown her his current roommates tiny room, and she suddenly remembered the claustrophobia she'd never had to feel 20 stories up in her high ceiling mirrored wall studio.

They talked about their space quirks.  He wanted to be free to host his movies nights, which of course she didn't have a problem with.  He also didn't have a problem with her project with Dusky.  He even joked about being a part of it.

"You know people are going to talk." KSL stated.

"You know that I don't care what people think.  But I think we also need to be careful.  We have lots of mutual friends.  I think that it's important that we don't bitch about each other in public.  I think we've reached a point where we can be honest with each other.  If we have a problem, we come to the other one first.  You know I'm more upset if you aren't just honest with me in the first place."

He agreed, and for the first time in the conversation she relaxed.  That had been her dealbreaker.  If he hadn't agreed, if he had hesitated just a moment...she would have found another overpriced one bedroom and not looked back.

She was glad to be a little more settled towards a future.  She was going to live with KSL for a year, save up as much money as possible, and then look for a house to buy.  She'd be ready to be alone by then...at least she thought.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

So Long, Farewell

"How was your test?"

"Postponed.  Got two more projects I'm working on."

"Busy busy dude.  I don't know how you do it, I'd go crazy."

"Well the traveling is going to change soon.  My boss told me that I will be coming back to the city by the end of August."

4 hours away.  There would be no reason for him to come back to visit, he had no family or actual friends here.

"So full time metropolitan life huh?"

"Yep.  I guess the company is no longer interested is having someone permanently stationed up here."

She couldn't judge his mood, so she asked him how he was feeling about it.

"I am okay with it.  I really liked it up here and if I could find a place that did similar research (and as good as pay) I would jump ship.  But I like my work and the other city isn't bad."

"Well I'll miss our quarterly outings!  We will have to have a goodbye drink before you go."

"Maybe a couple of drinks."

She smirked.  She wonder if she was insinuating what she was thinking...if they weren't going to see each other again, maybe this was their last chance. 

A lot of doors were closing on her lately.  These last two years were going to exist in a such strange time capsule in her mind.

Might as well have fun while it lasts, right?


Monday, March 26, 2018

Breaking the News

It didn't occur to her until later, but she realized suddenly one day that she needed to tell her ex about the roommate situation before he found out from someone else. 

"I'm still not 100% sure where I will end up at this point, but KSL needs a roommate around that time and it would save me $400 a month to do that, so that's what I might end up doing.  Then I could save up for a year and then buy a house.

I know you were worried about him when separated, and I didn't want you to hear that I was moving in with him from someone else and assume it was anything other than a roommate situation.  I didn't want you to be surprised and hurt, I wanted you to hear it from me."

"I appreciate that."

Her heart sank.  She hated that she was hurting him...why did she still feel this way, still feel like she continued to rip a band-aid off that kept reappearing?

"Are you okay?"  She felt compelled to text.

"I'll be alright."

Even though she thought she'd cried herself out, fresh tears started to form.  "I'm sorry.  After paying so much for the studio the past two years I really need to save money.  I was going to roomie up with Banana but this date came up so fast she's not ready to move out, she's still between jobs."

"I understand, and you don't owe me an explanation.  I appreciate that you told me though."

"I feel like I do.  I know it doesn't seem like it but that last thing I want to do is hurt you."

"Thanks."

Friday, March 23, 2018

The Search Begins

She was going to have a talk with KSL about a potential roommate situation later.  Until she could meet with him, she went into overdrive looking for one-bedrooms.

Goldie and SD kept sending her links to units in their building.  They were all more money than she was paying, and when she went to see them...they looked their age.  It was a 50 year old building and it was fast becoming apparent that her unit was the most updated.  She secretly thanked her lucky stars that she'd found the only hardwood floor-Ikea-ed out kitchen in the entire building with a dishwasher.

She had let in three different potential investors and given them the grand 20 second tour.  A couple of them had hinted that they might buy the place and let her stay, but she needed to be prepared and couldn't rely on empty promises.

Mel was trying to get her to move into a piece of shit place by herself, tried to convince her that she didn't need things that she found to be essential.  Maybe he was just too young to realize that when you get to be a certain age, you don't have to compromise anymore...at least not about the things that really matter to you.  Mel managed to pressure her with all this while at the same time almost completely disappearing from her life.  Being as they shared the acts of service and quality time love languages, she took this as a complete abandonment and let her heart drift out to sea.

Dishwashers mattered to her.  A washer and dryer in unit would be nice, but she could potentially live without it.  It had to be under a certain amount of money or she wouldn't be able to eat.  She didn't want to live out in the sticks and have a million hour commute.  She could save a bunch of money if she had a roommate.

Her mind screamed no, that it was quite possibly the worst idea in the history of ideas that she become roommates with KSL.  They would kill each other.  It would be volatile, an emotional minefield of awful.

She started writing down concerns, questions about the apartment.  Her mind kept going and she started a new page.  She re-wrote.  Then she heard a few voices in her head of people who had told her she was negative, a defeatist.  She started a new page of positives about having a roommate, having her as a roommate.  She figured that he would know what his good qualities of being a roommate would be.

She was ready to have the talk.  There were a few things on her list that she knew if he didn't agree to, that it couldn't work.  She at least felt more calm now that all her options had been laid out in front of her.

The crying had finally subsided.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Genenna

Genenna- a place or state of misery; hell.

She was avoiding messaging her landlady.  She knew her lease was up at the end of April, and the front desk guard had told her the owners had just been slapped with a huge fee for something silly.

She figured maybe if she waited...she didn't know.  She signed up for a new app that sent her updates of free apartments.

One day she received the text.  Her landlady was going to sell the apartment.  She asked for at least 2 months notice of her having to move out, she acquiesced.

Her mind went into overdrive.  She researched apartments, signed up for alerts...and that night she went out to dinner with Mel.  She apologized for fixating, and he said it was fine.  She mentioned that one possibility, that she didn't want to really think about right now, was that KSL needed a roommate in June.  Mel recalled his days being a roommate with KSL, and advised strongly against it.  She said that with KSL she would at least know what she was getting into, she knew him.

Mel said that he would offer to move with her, but "that's a little too relationship stuff."

Internally she rolled her eyes.  God forbid she was awesome enough to want to have "relationship stuff" with.  She decided to shake it off, since he was the least of her worries at this moment.

Then, days later...she got her two months notice.  She needed to be out by May 15th, and there were three realtors coming by that weekend to look at the apartment.  The tearful phone call came right in the middle of the wrap party for the movie.  She tried to pull it together, but the text messages from the investors came rolling in right after.  She just tried to keep it together as well as possible.  She spoke briefly with KSL over the phone about having a talk about being roommates.  He was going through his own thing and she deliberately tried to keep the emotion out of her voice as she spoke to him.

Mel showed up soon afterward, but he was spooked because an old girlfriend who had once slashed his tires was there.  He said he didn't feel comfortable with her there, and left soon afterward despite the fact that she said she wasn't feeling well and needed a ride home.  He texted with her a little later vaguely threatening that if she moved in with KSL that he wouldn't see her anymore.

Good Riddance.

She got back to the apartment and realized that she was going to be up for hours trying to clean the apartment for the first realtor the next morning.

She got as far as her front hallway and started sobbing.  She was not ready to say goodbye to this space.  She was set free here.  She realized that sex was enjoyable in this space, fell in love, and had so many drunk late nights with friends.  She was not going to see Goldie and SD as often.

What if she had to go back?  What if she ended up having no choice and moving back in with her mom, and her ex who still lived there?  She was suddenly back there, that moment before she moved into her studio and was so desperate to have a different life, to be set free.

She felt as if she was going to lose her freedom again.  It felt terrible.

"This place saved me.  This apartment, you, saved me.  I'm not ready to let go" She tearfully sobbed to Goldie.

She would figured it out eventually....but for the next three days she couldn't stop crying, couldn't stop mourning the potential loss.  And she did it alone.