To the one who has no idea

It’s 2 am, and I am wide awake. The start of this vacation has not been as restful and peaceful as I had hoped. Unfortunately, I think I know why. I like you, and you have no idea.

Not sure how much longer I can hear about your eharmony questions, or your questions about what to wear on your next date. Yes, part of me loves that you ask me, but another part of me does not like the fact that there is even a need for the conversation. Though it was amusing to get an anxious text from you with a picture of a couple of sets of your shoes asking for help. Even more amusing is that I was the inspiration behind this statement in your eharmony profile, “If you say that a food is the worst thing you’ve ever eaten, I will want to try it.” I think it’s crazy and funny that you put such a thing in your profile. And, yes, I maintain the particular diner on Broadway that I pointed out to you is among the worst. Or course, now you want to eat there. Why do I want to go there with you?

Nearly everyday you and I communicate with each other. Do you realize that when you seriously start dating someone our relationship cannot continue on the level that it is? I find it hard to believe that whomever you date would find it acceptable for you to have such a close friendship with me. You can call it fellowship, or whatever you want to label our relationship, but, mark my words, this will end as soon as you start seriously dating someone.

And with that, I cherish the early morning breakfasts with you at the diner. You are the only one for whom I would wake up early for a 7:30 a.m. breakfast on the weekend. I rather like that we practically have the place to ourselves at that early hour. I never like when life gets in the way, and we have to skip a weekend. Remember, these breakfasts with me will end when you find the one because she will expect that you will be dining with her, instead of me, and rightly so.

You spent Father’s day with me, always a hard day. Thank you for that.

I like that when I told you I have DID you said to me, “I only know what Hollywood has shown … or is it like Hollywood?” The sweet sincerity of the question made me laugh when you asked.

You’ve seen me as another alter, and you didn’t freak out or run away. In fact, you seemed to process it as not a big deal. Most importantly, you’ve remained my friend.

I like that we can laugh about my DID. While hiking you posed the possibility of going off the trails. I think you said this in jest, though it is hard to know with you. I put the kibosh on that idea, and said I had never done that. You turned to me, and with a sparkle in your eye, you said, “YOU can never say that.” I laughed right out loud. I never dreamt that there would be a day that I would laugh about my DID.

We don’t have a lot in common. In fact, we have quite a few differences. I like Kripalu as much as you like Vegas. You admittedly rarely read for pleasure, and you say you are not a “word person.”

But, I like who you are … the dramatic, kind, funny, loud person that you are through and through.

Though you cannot know how I feel about you. I do not want to face the prospect of not having you as a friend. Your friendship means too much to me. And so, I will continue to try to look unaffected when you talk about your latest date. I will glance at your hands, and try not to think about touching them. There’s a reason we have those awkward moments when it looks like I want to hug you, but don’t.

Love is the conundrum

Love is the enigma, and love is also the desire.

You lost the love of your father, and never really had the love of your mother. That set the stage for the eternal quest for love.

You married your high school sweetheart, you wanted to be sure to scoop up someone who loved you right away, waste no time. Alas, love was not enough for the two of you. Then, you met a lovely man who would do anything for you, and you broke his heart with what you thought was love with another woman. You did not love yourself enough to leave that relationship when you needed to do so.

Ten years later you wake up, and realize that your love, the love inside of you, deserves to be given to someone more deserving. And therein starts a journey to find love that may never conclude. You’ve realized that you are not only learning how to love others, you are learning how to love yourself. No wonder you struggle with family, friendships, and relationships. There’s not just finding a boyfriend. Gosh, finding a boyfriend seemed like the ultimate solution long ago in 1991. You find a boyfriend, never leave him, marry him, and stay together forever. You thought that was the recipe to life and life-long love.

But, no, love is so much more than that. It’s much more than just staying with someone. It’s acceptance and kindness and tenderness and so much more because you are still learning, and you may always be in the remedial class for love.

These days when you struggle in your lessons on love you have to remember this: Do not go back to the Well of Love That Did Not Work.

Do.Not.Do.That. Easier said than done. You are lonely, and want to love. But do not go back. There was a good reason for the end of all of those relationships. Go forward … forward! It’s scary because forward is the unknown, whereas the Well of Love That Did Not Work has some inherent comfort in that you know what to expect from that well.

Do not text the ex-husband. He is married, unhappy, but married, nonetheless.

Do not flirt with the ex-boyfriend down the street. He loved you, but did not see you as his equal.

Do not Facebook message the hotel concierge from Dublin. He was homophobic and cheap, fun for a vacation date, and that was it.

Go forward into the unknown. It’s the only way you’ll have a chance of cracking the lifelong love lesson.

Reread this post when you forget everything you just read here.

The Irish chef

You spotted me in the AA meeting from afar, you with your brainy glasses and that Irish je ne sais quoi air about you. I had 30 days sober, and you had two weeks under your belt. They always say to never pair up like this in AA in early sobriety. How many of us who don’t heed this advice think that we’re the exception? We all think we’re special and that we’ll be the exception to the rule.

I was well-behaved at first. I greeted you, and then quickly exited the meeting. But then later that day I saw you at Starbucks. You were intently reading The Big Book. I was reading something else, and will always read something else other than the damned Big Book. We politely smile at each other, but then after a while you invite me to join you at your table. As we leave Starbucks one of the gals from AA walks in and sees us together. She gives us that knowing judgmental look, and I don’t give a shit. To this day, even with everything that happened, I would do it all over again. I would do it again because the soul does not find a kindred spirit in every lifetime.

Talking to you felt like I had a front row seat to your spirit. There is so much about you that I connected with that I have trouble writing about it because my brain can hardly handle the beauty of your kindred spirit.

Remember the time I was so jacked up by my boss at work that you asked me out to a cafe before a meeting? You gave me the book The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. It was just the book I needed, but more than that, you wrote me something lovely in Gaelic in the front of the book. Unfortunately, I no longer recall the translation of what you wrote, but I treasure that you wrote me something in Gaelic, could have been your grocery list, and I would have treasured it as well.

You asked me to the New Year’s Eve AA dance, and it broke my heart to tell you no. It was a dream come true to be asked by you, but I knew it was too soon for us. I wanted nothing more than to accompany you to the dance. Your face fell when I told you I could not accept, and my heart just heaved with sadness. I knew it would be the only time you would ask me out, somehow I just knew.

A couple of weeks later you disappeared, and I knew you were drinking again. I actually felt it a few days prior to your disappearance. I could feel the shifts in you when you were headed towards the demons instead of away from them. It always irritated you that I had that knack. Trust me, I wish I didn’t have it because I always knew when you were going to pick up a drink. My soul would tense up, and pinch me with a warning. I would berate it to shut up, but it was right every single time.

Thank you for introducing me to Christy Moore, the Gaelic language, and for your thorough explanation as to why you and your family do not like Margaret Thatcher. This uninformed American never knew. Right now, I’m listening to “The Irish Rovers” hoping you are well, but my soul is pinching me back so I’ll make it a wish and a prayer instead.