Thursday, September 29, 2011

Second Time Around

I have the tragic distinction among my close girlfriends of being "the re-dater." Ugh. Much to my eternal embarrassment and chagrin, I am THAT girl who has re-dated a number (oh yeah, more than one!) of ex-flames at various points in my life.

Issues, much? Um, "YES!"

I mean, come on. When you step back and consider this, that I would re-date someone with whom it didn't work out in the first place, clearly, I've had some big issues to deal with. And that I did it more than once? Yeesh.

It's plagued me on and off through the years, because even as I did it I was bothered by it, something in me knowing this was off, maybe not the best idea, and yet, it's the choice I made.

I've spent a good part of this last year dealing with aspect of my life (there were reasons this necessitated my attention), and recently a close friend and I (and my friends, they rock, because they so mercifully do not tease or harass me about this) were talking about this and it made me think of the choices I've made that took me so long to really understand and make peace with (and stop repeating them).

In essence, I was drawn to the safety of what I knew. Re-dating someone was safer and *better* than the risk of the unknown. There was comfort there, the memory of what had been good, and I guess my own need to believe that yes, people can recognize their mistakes and change.

There was this, too: the utter romance of being told how much I'd been missed and desired. To have a guy tell me he'd been unable to stop thinking about me all these (months, years), that there was no one else like me, that they'd been so stupid to (treat me poorly, let someone like me go). I heard all this, and more, and I ate it up.

That right there is the mark of my immaturity - that I would blind myself with illusions and words because it was all so pretty and made me feel so special. I was so childish and silly, girl-woman with certain insecurities and a need to feel glorified. It was right to question me - my level of maturity, my sanity, what planet I was living on - for choosing this path.

The patterns are funny. It was always an ex approaching me out of the blue. It was always words of regret and sorrys. It was admissions of how unforgettable I am, how no one compares. It was the question of if I'd give another chance. Whenever I would voice concerns, there were always promises that it would be different, that he'd changed.

Here's the thing: no one changes. Yes, people learn from mistakes and grow, but they don't change. And even if a person grows, it doesn't change the core of who they are and how that affected the dynamic of the relationship.

And so, every time, after weeks or months of everything being good (and every man is so good about being on his super-best behavior, presenting only the best of himself, which further fuels the fantasy. And yes, of course, same was true of me), it would all go back to how it used to be (i.e., not so good). It was inevitable. The things that were issues the first time around became issues again. The same dynamic returned. However *grown* either one of us was, there was no changing whatever was fundamentally off about the relationship, about "us."

While I learned this through the experience of what were ultimately minor relationships (except one of this group), this reality was driven home through the experience of my marriage. Longtime readers here know that my ex-husband and I split up early in the marriage, and that we reconciled about a year after being apart. By that point I was wary of the whole "re-dating" thing, but this was different. This was marriage. This was the person I'd chosen to spend my life with. In the time we were apart I'd struggled with (yes, my feelings for him, but also) the terrible weight of having given up so quickly. I asked myself a lot, who does that? Who throws the towel in less than two years in? The answer was always a harsh but true one: an immature, selfish person, that's who. I vacillated between my feelings of certainty of how much it was his fault vs. the nagging feeling that this was marriage, and that I should have tried something else or something more to make it work.

Which is why when he contacted me and soon enough expressed his feelings for me and his desire to reconcile, I readily did it. This was no silly relationship, this was a marriage, and I dove back in with the sole goal of making it work. I'd been so wrecked with the first ending, I knew I could not ensure another, that I would fight with all my might to prevent that from happening again.

And it did work, in its own way. Our feelings for each other were strong and that carried us a great deal. Ultimately, though, we hit that same wall: same issues, same dynamic, same everything that'd made it end the first time around. The only difference, I suppose, was that I knew with all my being that I had tried all I possibly could, in every possible way, had used my own growth to be a better person and spouse, and none of it mattered much. In the end, there was not a single thing I could say or do that would get through to him or break his wall down (and for the record, he's expressed as much to me and there is no dispute between us about how and why we ended).

In the aftermath, I thought a lot about how we'd ended the second time much like we did the first time. There had been fights that could have been start-to-finish repeats of fights we'd had six years before. And that was terrible. I felt this immense frustration and sense of how unacceptable that was to me (and here I'm referring to fights about major life issues, not silly fights or bickering), that after all that we'd been through (good and bad), after all that time, it was the same issues that undid us. It was incredible and eye-opening and shattering.

So, nothing changes. People can grow and better themselves, their issues and behaviors, but I'm convinced that there's just no making something that failed once succeed a second time. You only get one time - the first time - to get it right. If it doesn't work, too bad, but it won't work again. No amount of time, no words - nothing - changes whatever the fundamental problems were.

In all relationships, there are issues of blame and fault and who was personally in a worse place and who caused more harm. But there's also this: a breakup happens for significant, if not always immediately obvious, reasons, and there is no ignoring or whitewashing that. You can feel regret about it, you can feel lonely and just want someone familiar around, you can focus on the good and tell yourself it wasn't so bad, you can hope all you want that the second time will be right. None of that ultimately changes anything. Some couples just can't make it work, for any variety of reasons, and something about them is off, off enough to make the whole thing fall apart.

If my life offers any lesson, it's that there is no changing that. No amount of time, of love, of therapy, of effort makes the second time around last. None.

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Posted by Tere @ 9/29/2011   | | | links to this post

Monday, September 26, 2011

Eyes Opened Again and Again and Again

Afternoons like yesterday are the ones that can sometimes make my whole year. I haven't stopped thinking about it.

Max and I shared a movie date earlier in the day (we saw A Dolphin's Tale, which had me in tears within the first five minutes). It was a sweet mother-son outing, of the kind I revel in because I'm guilty of getting caught up in the day-to-day stuff, the routine and obligations, and I often don't even think of planning something like this.

When we were headed home, I told Max that for the rest of the day, we'd be home and he could play with any of his toys and watch a little TV. I have so much to do, with Jevo moving in in a few weeks, that I need to be home, focusing on those things, which is a mix of exciting and anxiety-inducing. I was, in the back of my head, worried that an entire afternoon cooped up indoors would drive him mad (which would, in turn, drive me mad). It wouldn't be the first time, and bored, restless Max is no easy thing to deal with. I was prepared to bribe him to keep him from bouncing off the walls. I was thinking how I usually pack weekends with things to do - errands, playdates, family stuff - so that we're rarely "doing nothing" at home for more than a couple of hours at a time. I decided I was going to have to ease up and let him make a mess and get very loud if it meant I could get stuff done, and was repeating just that - ease up, ease up - over and over again as I pulled up into the house.

This is the thing about my kid - he's pretty much non-stop movement. Even as he's totally into something, he's still moving and fidgeting (and funnily enough, my mom informed me this weekend that I was the same way). He is a chatterbox. I mean, a serious chatterbox. He wakes me up at 5:30 a.m. on any given day with his classic opening line, "Mommy, you know what?" And from there, he just talks, talks, talks. It is one of the things I love most about him, yet that too can easily veer from "charming and awesome" to "oh g-d please child please be quiet for one minute so I can think!" Seriously, the child talks and talks and talks, and it becomes disruptive when it's time to get him into the tub, when I'd like him to listen to the bedtime story, when I'm trying to answer his first question but he's already on question four. I love his energy and spirit, but honestly, keeping up is hard.

So yesterday, I was prepared for incessant requests to go out, for whining, for a meltdown. I got my game face on and hunkered down in the kitchen/dining room to fold laundry and continue sorting stuff. And then, after some TV while he lunched, and some train-track building/playing, and a couple requests to go play outside, I noticed something: utter silence. I peeked over at him, and there he was on the living room floor, Lego pieces scattered around him as he contemplated the instructions and tried to figure it out.

I don't know how long he spent trying to build that little car, but I was floored. He's usually absorbed in his other activities, utterly giving himself into his imagination, but this was different. He wasn't distracted by anything, and he didn't take a break until frustration with one piece had him yell out for my help.

Max shows so much enthusiasm for so many things that a lot of it doesn't really hit me. He's passionate about trains, but later in the day he's so crazy about painting, that it's easy to just see that he likes to bounce around a number of favored activities and bounce, bounce, bounce. This stock-still silence and complete absorption was so, so, different.

And in the end, he had something to show for it. He was able to figure out the instructions and build a car. I couldn't hide my happy surprise and praised him for sticking with it until he got it, and it was so clear that he was proud of himself. He kept asking me, "Can't you believe I figured it out all by myself?" Clearly, even he was impressed with the feat!

And for me, it was just one of those moments that you never expect and never really prepare for even as you know that life as a parent is filled with them: I saw a new side of him, and it blew me away. It jarred me from my own myopia, from my absorption lately with chores, chores, chores, and slugging through the day. I thought, man, I demand a lot from him and now when I just leave him alone, he shows me what he's capable of. I needed this lesson, needed a new filter through which to see this incredible boy of mine.

Of course, now he wants more Legos. He played a bit tonight with his older sets (the toddler type), and I could see him kinda itching for something like the one he built last night, specific pieces to build specific things, with instructions.

A wish like that, a mother must fulfill.

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Posted by Tere @ 9/26/2011   | | | links to this post

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The One Where I Lose My Sh** Over Facebook

This rant has been building up in me, and today, I've finally gone over the edge. I've tried to hold this back, tried to not be so petty - but I'm so freaking DONE with this crap that I don't even care if I'm nutty or petty.

I'm so sick of the way people spew all kinds of inane, boring, and utterly-inappropriate-for-a- public-forum crap on FB. It's gotten to the point where I am honestly baffled and incredulous at the utter lack of self-filtering people do.

I've got on my newsfeed people who are constant, perpetual whiners, who have nothing positive or interesting or fun to say, and all they ever post is complaint after complaint after complaint. These folks post every single day about how exhausted they are, how sick they are, how slowly the day is moving, how sucky their day is (and always over the most minor things, like, because, oh no, their sink is clogged!), etc. It's "FML" all over the place - and yes, eff your life for being stuck in traffic or having a long day or having to do something unpleasant or inconvenient. Eff it, indeed.

Then there are the ones who reek of desperation, posting status and check-ins for the sole purpose, it seems, of eliciting reactions. Not to sincerely share or express whatever genuine emotion is attached to what they're sharing, but mainly to present themselves in a certain light that I guess they think is alluring, but which in reality is not. It's desperate and silly. These can either be the fake-modest boastful posts, or the uber-mysterious ones, where someone has constant drama or intrigue, but what exactly it is, no one knows. How many times does one really need to post super-vague, semi-ominous things before they feel satisfied? How many times does one need to have people going, "omg, are you ok?", "hang in there!", "whatever it is, you can beat it!!", "please tell us what's going on??" before their self-esteem is boosted (and let's not get started on how bad things are for you if you need a social media site to boost you in any way)? From the outside, it just looks... sad. People you know in another context, whom you generally like, behaving like this.... it's just sad.

As FB has evolved and become the cultural phenom it has, my feelings about it have, too. However much I enjoy using it, it remains to me a superficial diversion. Maybe this is a key point here, the reason why I this stuff has pushed too many buttons for me. I feel like it's a place where I can post what I think are interesting, funny, thought-provoking or silly things, and where I can chat with people I've known at different times in my life and stay up-to-date on their lives. And while this last part really matters to me, I nonetheless resist giving it any real significance - no matter how *important* it is from a cultural, social or political standpoint, it is not important to me from a personal one. It is not the proper place to pour my personal issues and dramas (though have I posted the seemingly requisite vague posts? A few times, yes), it is not the place I am compelled to rush to to post the inane shit that makes up my day - "uugghhh, work :-(", "time to shower!", "it's raining!!" - nor to expose my unhappiness at whatever thing has gone wrong with my day, nor to post impulsively, without thought or consideration to what exactly it is I'm putting out there.

Can I expect anyone else to feel as I do? No, but I also feel very strongly that there has to be some kind of limit to what is acceptable. I hate how the fact that the newsfeed is a de facto audience, it's given people the (deluded) notion that every aspect of their lives is of interest to anyone but themselves.

It's not.

I want to know what my friends are up to, but not when what they're up to is the same boring nonsense I'm up to. I don't care that you're stuck in traffic, that you have to go to the dentist, that the whole world is against you and you're a helpless victim. I only care about these things if there's a funny or surprising or quirky or interesting story attached to it. I also don't care that you're at Taco Bell, or at the gas station, or at the grocery store, or at home, unless you were in the hospital and you're letting everyone know you're not anymore. If your newsfeed is indeed your audience, can you at least make it worth everyone's time?

And you know where I especially don't care that you're at? A funeral home or cemetery. Because if anything convinces me that social media has obliterated a certain portion of our humanity, if not personal relationships and personal interactions, it's this, this image of someone at a funeral or burial who, instead of at least being respectful, is on their phone, dicking around on a social media site.

Have people forgotten that? That in the end, FB and the like are flippin' websites that can't possibly matter more than the actual people around you? That the way you use these sites speaks volumes about you, sometimes to your own detriment? That you post stuff like this and it's virtually impossible to feel good about it, because really, what am I supposed to do with this? That living your life through the site, or attached to your phone while you post update after update after photo after check-in, isn't living much?

Of course, it begs the question: when so many people do it (and to be fair, the majority of my FB friends are not like this, just a small handful. But I hear from others about their FB friends, and I visit sites like Lamebook, so these people, they're out there in abundance), despite my own feelings about it, does it automatically make it acceptable? Am I too rigid? I can't seem to agree with this. I want to share in my friends' news and lives; I delight when I see them doing something they clearly enjoy or are excited about, when then they share a restaurant or shop or item or link that they enjoyed, when I can see them sharing with no real strings attached. But in the end, we're all mundane to a degree, and I want to be spared that mundaneness (and the melodrama). It's not interesting; it's not fun; it has zero value. And I don't want to be dragged, by virtue of having agreed to *friend* you, into your melodramas, or be forced to feel... something... or have a reaction of some kind because you're posting from a burial. A burial!!

I know we've all been lame in one way or another on FB. Hell, I sure have. I mean, that divorce I went through? My god, did it make me morbid and vague and sometimes ridiculous on FB! I cringe when I think back to that time. But my use of FB has changed as the site's grown in popularity and ubiquity, and as I've been more conscious about reigning my shit in. Because that's the thing: this stuff I'm complaining about, it's rooted in an appalling lack of self-awareness, self-filtering and perspective on the perpetrators' parts. And I guess I have no patience for that anymore.

/rant

Now go enjoy my non-inanity (I save that crap for Twitter) on Facebook.

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Posted by Tere @ 9/21/2011   | | | links to this post

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

**Sigh** Blah and the Rest of It

I'm trying really hard not to feel overwhelmed and slightly panicky, but this is a losing battle. I suffer from that condition (wha? surely, it's a condition!) where, if the overwhelmedness is too much, I just shut down. That means nothing gets done and shit piles up, and that just makes it all worse because I end up digging myself into a hole I can't possibly get out of.

ACK.

I live on lists. Every day, I write a list of things I must get done that day. This is on top of my list of reminders, that run the gamut from things like, "pay aftercare" (which I forgot to do anyway) and "fix room" (which room? who knows?! I knew when I wrote it, but of course, I've forgotten which room I was referring to, and anyway, it applies to all the rooms) to "Dermatologist" (which has been on the list for so long now I'm pretty sure the skin cancer has reached stage 4). Then there are other lists - "Things to Buy for the House in the Next Few Months," "Max," "Things to Get Rid Of," "Download These Songs," "Read these Books," "Research" - which basically leaving me drowning in a sea of lists. I feel like I have to much to do and remember and my brain is basically like, not having it.

Sigh.

This feeling is inevitable. I started classes three weeks ago, at the same time that my boy is adjusting to a new school with new rules (oh, go on and guess how many he's broken! Hint: many!), at the same time that I'm short-staffed at work and loaded with assignments, at the same time that Jevo and I are planning THE MOVE, at the same time that I have all this parenting to attend to, not to mention certain obligations to my loved ones.

I know what will help: how about if I break it down into a list of "Things that Are Stressing Me Out"?!

School:
It's just effing hard to be all intellectual and a critical thinker when I have so much on my plate. This was supposed to be my *job* while I was unemployed and/or working part-time. Instead, it's something I love (I've taken some really cool classes, and I'm continually surprised at my ability to *get* subject matter that is completely new to me), but that I don't have the time to properly focus on and dive into. I already feel like my online class is a total chore (don't even get me started on online classes; the profs load you up with this ridiculous amount of work - the equivalent of sitting in an actual class every day for two hours - that is impossible to keep up with, and discussions are lame and completely fake), and because it's so disjointed I have little interest in it. I'm already two chapters behind in my reading, which I hate. Thankfully, my in-person class is great and useful and the reading and workload are realistic. So there's that, I guess. Oh, and g-d willing, I graduate next semester. Whooo.

Monkey in Kindergarten:
Oh my hell. This child. Is killing me. He is adapting well to his new school and really likes his teacher and is making friends and all that nice stuff, but still. There are issues. There's nothing you could consider abnormal as far as a kid getting used to a school that's very, very different from his old one, but I feel the stress of making sure that he transitions well and that I establish a good rapport with his teacher. If he has a bad day, it's hell for me to set him straight in a way that will be effective and impress upon him the importance of following the new rules, which isn't something I'm necessarily great at. I'm also getting used to a new routine, to the way this school operates, to staying on top of homework and messages from the school about events, reminders, etc. It's like I'm in school, too, I swear.

Work:
Sorry, I don't blog about work. It's enough to say that my department has a monster workload, and I'm short-staffed, and it's overwhelming right now.

THE MOVE:
Where to begin with this one? This is actually a wonderful thing that is overwhelming mainly because of all the to-do's. We have to figure out what he's bringing vs. what he's ditching; what I'm keeping vs. what I'm ditching (a process I've begun and so my house is total hell right now with piles of stuff that I need to get out of here ASAP); what bank to go with for our joint accounts (a decision made suddenly harder by the discovery that both our banks officially suck); what to do about limited closet space (though we did buy some lovely antique dressers, but I fear they might not be enough). There's more, I'm sure. I have a list I'm too lazy to go check.

All this Parenting I Have to Attend To:
Come on, do I really need to say anything about this?

Certain Obligations to My Loved Ones:
Namely, my BFF's baby shower in NYC in a few weeks, Thanksgiving in NC with Jevo's dad, and planning my sister's baby shower (oh yeah, I have a niece on the way! Wheee!). Plus, I have a couple of relatives whom I love very much who are very sick, and it's worrisome. I hate seeing them like this, I hate my inability to do anything to make it better, I hate the pain this brings us all.

Whew. I hate sounding like a whiner. I don't feel whiny about it, just so damn overwhelmed. I didn't even get into the part about how by the time I've put Max to bed, I am so freaking exhausted that I can barely get anything done. I consider it a stellar evening if I manage to leave everything ready for the next morning (clothes, lunchboxes, backpack, my bags, etc.). Getting to the laundry and the clutter? Ha! I have zero energy to get to that until he's back with his dad. And so it piles up. Ugh.

All right, so now that I feel like an utter failure, let's see how many chores I can zip through before crashing for the night. I'll be lucky if I get to two.

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Posted by Tere @ 9/13/2011   | | | links to this post

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Six, or Pulling Away

Friday morning as we walked toward your school, you let my hand go and told me you didn't need to hold it. I saw you look at some of the older kids - two girls standing by the gates - when you asked me for your bookbag and lunchbox. You slipped one on and took the other in your hand, you who usually complain that they're too heavy and can't I please just hold them for you?

You will not remember this moment, but I will. It's the first time you pull away from me, the first time ever that you don't want to hold my hand. I say nothing. I go along with this as if it's all perfectly o.k., when really, my heart is deflating.

As we near the school building, you reach over and grab my hand. Again, I say nothing, but you smile up at me when I give it a little squeeze. Oh, I realize that very moment, he's not quite ready to let go.

But the point's been made: you've turned a corner, and the desire to pull away from me has been sparked.

Away, not apart.

I say this more for myself, so that I don't completely lose it.

I'm not wholly surprised; I believe a big part of my job as your mother is to help you grow away from me as confidently as possible, and I've been working on that for years now, all those moments when I help you learn something or push you to figure it out for yourself or tell you you can do it, it's o.k., and hold you to it, refusing to rescue you. But still, that first sign from you that the shift I knew would come is glimmering in you, and - wow. A mom can't ever fully prepare for that, I guess.

Sweet boy, you're so bright and quirky and stubborn and chatty and sensitive and full of laughter. I love the way your sense of humor is growing, and that you want so badly to be good and helpful. I love how free you are with your affection, and the way your face betrays you when you do something you're not supposed to.

You drive me nuts with your constant challenging, with the way I have to repeat things like 3,000 times, with the moments where you make dumb choices and I have to let you feel the consequences of your actions.

You are maddening and the source of so much worry and frustration and wonder and elation. And every day my love for you deepens, and the jolt of that truth when it hits me never fails to startle me, because I thought I already loved you more than humanly possible.

And so, with you turning six today, I understand that I must help guide you through this new phase of your growth toward independence. I have to be o.k. with you pulling away, encourage you sometimes, even. I have to show you in whatever way I can that you can do it and that I believe in you, so you should believe in yourself, too.

But no matter what, I'll always be ready and willing to hold your hand, and yes, I'm going to give it a little squeeze.

Happy Birthday, my monkey.



*************************************************

Five
Four
Three
Two
One

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Posted by Tere @ 9/11/2011   | | | links to this post

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Joy (and Guilt) Amid Tragedy

9/11 looms large before us. It's not just the annual remembrance, it's that we're marking a decade since the day our nation was forever changed.

I've shared here how and why 9/11 affected me, though I don't think I've ever mentioned that at the time, I was a federal employee, working in a large complex that housed other federal offices, and that we were in essence evacuated and sent home. I remember all of us huddled around the TV in the conference room, with my boss on the line from DC assuring us he was fine but telling us no one knew what to expect next, and that we needed to get out. There was this dread at that unknown, in seeing the planes slamming into buildings (and a field) in different parts of the country and not knowing where the next one would hit.

I remember leaving and looking up at the sky, almost waiting for the plane(s). I remember the eerie silence in the streets as I made my way home. I remember sitting on my couch the rest of the day, crying and crying, transfixed by the images on my TV. I remember obsessively reading about the victims, wanting to know who they were, and how my thoughts of them would leave me sobbing in the shower; as I cooked dinner; lying in bed at night, too terrified to sleep; as I sat at my desk after we returned to work. I remember the fallout in my own personal life.

I don't think many of us will ever forget the personal ways we were affected by the tragedy, no matter how removed from it we may have been.

But in recent years, 9/11 has come to have a different meaning in my life, one of joy that inevitably makes me feel somewhat ashamed, as if such joy is just plain wrong on a day like this.

I became a mother on 9/11. I birthed a tiny, frog-like baby boy in the wee hours of that day, and from the moment he was coming out, when I glimpsed down and saw that hairy head and my midwife said, "touch your baby," and my fingers felt the hair, the head, the forehead, I have been a different person. The experience transformed me. Seeing and holding that dear thing transformed me. The pure hell of those first three months transformed me. His smile, his smell, his sweet breath, his laughter transformed me.

Every single day of the last almost-six years has had at least one moment that has transformed or opened or devastated me. I have had my eyes opened many times over; I've felt terrible fear; I've been slayed, elated, turned upside-down and inside-out. I am who I am in my core, and yet, I'm nowhere near the person I used to be.

So 9/11 leaves me with very mixed feelings: the lingering sadness, the crazy joy, the guilt at this duality. I think about that day and the victims throughout the day, even as I cover my boy in kisses and sing to him and surround him with gifts. I celebrate him - my light, my all - even as I, in a moment alone as the festivities die down, get a lump in my throat and my eyes well with tears at the thought of all the mothers who can't do what I'm doing, who mourn and die again at the very moment that I thank God for my son and his life.

When I was pregnant, I was due on the 12th, and everyone would say, "Oh, watch, he'll be born on 9/11!" And I'd launch into a (pregnancy hormone-fueled, I'm sure) tirade about, "Hell, no, he will not! He better not! I'll die if this kid is born on the 11th!" So, of course, he was born on the 11th and I immediately felt stupid for my words, because all that mattered was that he was born healthy and was here and he was mine and he was tiny and soft and heartbreakingly awesome. And what's more, he was a sign of hope and joy on a day marred by tragedy.

And that is what I ultimately hold in my heart: that this tragedy marked us all and its sense of loss and sadness remains, will remain. But that despite this tragedy, joy persists. Joy is born and reborn and we celebrate it - we must celebrate it - and feel the guilt and fragility of it all, and carry on despite it. Or because of it.

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Posted by Tere @ 9/06/2011   | | | links to this post

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Two Years

It's our anniversary weekend.

Two years ago, my friend and I had recently shared a very unexpected evening of awesomeness that we vowed would not get in the way of what had become a very good, very solid friendship. In the three weeks since that night, we'd done a really good job of making good on that vow. We'd instantly gone back to our old dynamic, with no weirdness, no hard feelings, none of that stuff.

Two years ago, my friend realized his feelings for me had changed after that night, as mine had. But we'd spoken honestly about all we'd each been through that year, and how vital the friendship had become, and how it was best to continue as we'd had. So for me, that was that. My feelings for him were my issue to deal with privately.

Except that, two years ago, my friend decided he couldn't be without me. I was too amazing (hey, his words!) to be just a friend. So the Saturday of that Labor Day weekend, in an unexpected private moment at a friend's pool party, my friend made his move and changed our destiny (I learned later that the night before he'd decided to stop fighting his feelings for me and to pursue me).

Two years ago, my friend became my love.

Two years later, I'm so thankful that he was so bold and ballsy, so happy with the love we've found and the life we're building. This has been the sweetest, most wonderful surprise I could have ever hoped for.

We celebrated today by going furniture shopping, buying two dressers for the bedroom. He moves in next month.

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Posted by Tere @ 9/03/2011   | | | links to this post