Thursday, April 30, 2015

It's not you...

I have been debating all day about whether to write today or wait until I feel better. But my stance with this blog is to put it all out there so people feel less alone in their own craziness. I feel like the people who prefer to present a perfect life online only make the rest of us feel crappy about ours, whereas those of us who put our weaknesses and bad moments out there help people feel better. Here's hoping this helps someone.

I had hoped that if The Love Interest rejected me that I would be able to "walk it off" and hold my head high and just be proud of myself and not take it personally. And some of this is true - I am proud of myself and I know his rejection of me 100% has nothing to do with me, my attractiveness, my worth as a person, etc. But oh boy am I having a hard time shaking this off.

The truth is, I feel horrible.

I feel physically sick - nauseated, no appetite, like I have a brick in my stomach, my legs and arms feel weak and I'm dizzy when I stand up. And today I kept bursting into tears at random moments. I haven't slept and everything depresses me. I've only been able to listen to loud, raucous music because anything even the slightest bit sentimental makes me want to cry. I feel completely, utterly heartbroken.

The thing I can't stop thinking about is how happy I would have been right now had it gone another way. Had he said he felt the same way and was happy about my coming out with it like I did, I would just be over the moon right now. I would be thrilled and relieved and ecstatic. Instead, I feel like this. And it went horribly. Apart from me being an idiot and saying or doing something I regretted, it kind of couldn't have gone worse. You should have seen just how pained and embarrassed he was. He couldn't get away from me fast enough. It was awful.

And it's all so maddening and confusing. You like me, you're attracted to me, but you don't want to be with me. Huh? I did call our mutual friend and he was entirely unhelpful. He had heard nothing about it - so clearly my LI had not mentioned our hanging out to even his closest friend - and all he could say was, "well, it sounds like you were both being honest." He could offer me no insight into this guy's relationships or where he's at now with this stuff; he says they haven't talked about things like this in a long time. He did say he admired my huge brass balls, though. So there's that.

All my friends, including my very supportive book club last night, are disappointed and befuddled and annoyed for me. Which feels good, so at least I know I'm not the only one sitting here going, "what the fuck???" I did talk to one of my single friends who told me over the years she's had several men do to her what I just did, and she reacted the same way - shocked, embarrassed, ran away - and said she just didn't want to do what it took to be in, and maintain, a relationship, and now is wondering if some of these guys were "the one that got away". I'm sure this is this guy's issue - he finds me appealing enough but just doesn't want to make the fucking effort. Great.

So, I wondered what it would be like after our dinner, and now I know. Much like I used to stand over my sleeping newborn babies and say to myself, "now I know." I've walked over a threshold with this guy after twenty years, and now I'm on the other side. And in this case, the other side sucks.

I think my advice would be to anyone attempting to turn a friendship into a relationship in which the other person has never even slightly indicated any interest, don't. Your gut is always right. Your heart is not.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The Low Down

I'm just going to vomit this up now as it's fresh in my mind and I don't want to forget anything. Perhaps tomorrow I'll have a different perspective, but for now, this is what happened on my date tonight.

The Love Interest came over with a cake and we talked in the kitchen while I cooked us a nice curry, then sat on the porch with the twinkling lights from the mountain across the train tracks blinking at us. We talked for four hours about all sorts of things. Then I mentioned it was 11 PM and he said he guessed he'd better get going. 

I knew it was now or never, so as he was gathering up to leave and I was about to open the door for him, I said, "so, I invited you over here to tell you I think you're cute and then never got around to it."

As I had pictured, he sort of stopped, with an embarrassed smile, and shook his head. "You don't realize that I'm not." I kind of paused, waiting for him to say something else, and he just said, "I don't know what to say to that." And then he started to walk out!

I followed him out and said, "you're just going to leave it like that?" And then came the speech.

"I really enjoy hanging out with you, I find you very attractive, but I think we'd be better as just friends."

I said something along the lines of, "it's ok, you're not feeling it. I get it. I just had to put it out there."

I believe at this point he said something like, "...and I don't know why..." And it was getting so incredibly awkward that I gave him a big hug and said that we're friends and it's ok and not to worry about it. And then he pretty much sprinted down the stairs and I went in the house and immediately texted like fifty people a big thumbs down. And then talked to a sympathetic friend for an hour and a half. 

So, that's that. We have our answer, and it is a big, fat NO.

I'm so glad I just said it. It's such a relief to not have that hanging over my head anymore - the last month, especially today, had been torture. I was determined to not let him leave this house tonight without a definitive answer, and I got it.

More importantly, I could tell by the way he was and the look on his face that yes, he had been considering me, that he was expecting this, and was a bit tortured over it. He was definitely very embarrassed (way more than I was) and reacted bizarrely - he really would have just walked out without saying much of anything had I not pressed him. I got the impression that he had probably been trying to convince himself over these months to go for it but just "wasn't feeling it", whatever the hell that means. And now he's afraid he's ruined a friendship, which he hasn't, because, as stated, I plan to completely forget any of this ever happened. Our next group meeting is in two weeks and I plan to act as cool as a cucumber. I'm a grown-ass woman. I can take it. Have I mentioned how I pushed two people out of my vagina?

But oh, you guys. We were sitting in the porch and he was so close to me, and just that maleness...the deep voice and the faint stubble and the shoulders...I'm just not that close to men that often and it's intoxicating. I just wanted to run my fingers through his hair and plant a big wet one on his lips. And he says he finds me very attractive. So...what gives?

Naturally my fantasy is in an hour or a day or a month he shows up on my doorstep and says, "I was a fool, I tell you, a damned fool!" and grabs me and kisses me as the music swells and the credits roll. 

Nope. Not going to happen.

What will happen is I will never contact him again, and we will see each other every month at this meeting, and I will pretend none of this ever fucking happened.

I may call our mutual friend tomorrow and tell him I made a pass at our friend and he shot me down and what's his take on it. I would love to hear from someone who knows him his perspective on all this, if he even has one. Probably he will just say, "he's an idiot." That's guys for you.

So, that's it. I'm glad I did all this because I hate wondering "what if". And I did get some jollies from it even if it ended badly. At least I didn't do anything stupid and, if anything, behaved far better than he did. I think he was just thoroughly freaked out. 

Maybe he will suddenly change his mind and realize what a catch I am. But I won't hold my breath.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

One down...

I just got back from recording the podcast. It went well. As with things like this, it went by in the blink of an eye and I keep thinking about all the cool things I should have said. But, it's ok - I had a lot of love and compassion and humor talking about my mother and our history, which I think is important. I was also able to mention being a Single Mother By Choice and make a plug for that. He said he will definitely air it. Exciting! Will post the link here when it's available.

I texted The Love Interest to check if we were still on for Tuesday. He said yes and that he'd like to bring dessert. That doesn't sound like someone who's about to say, "yeah, girlfriend and I..." or "'re great, but..." Right? Anyway. I'm feeling pretty good about it. Heck, I might even shave my legs.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Gloomy Wednesday

It's a (rare) gloomy Wednesday in Los Angeles and I am enjoying it. Whenever I think of the upcoming summer I just cringe. All anyone can talk about here is the drought and how screwed we all are...when I think of summer (which for us is pretty much May to November) I just picture it being unbearably hot, dry, bright, and miserable. Picture Lawrence of Arabia without the sweeping soundtrack. So, yeah. A day where you can smell the earth because for once it's not just dust blowing in your face and you actually want to get a hot drink at Starbucks? I'll take it.

So Bobby is at school and I'm in the attic with Theo, and he is playing independently, which is wonderful. He has changed a lot recently. He feeds himself, and I have been making an effort to drop the purées and have him eat real food - sandwiches, pieces of cheese, tortilla wraps. But I am still at a bit of a loss as to what to feed these children. I don't know why this is such a weird mental block for me, considering how much I know about food and love to cook. It's just that most of the things I cook for myself are too spicy, complicated, or hard to eat for little kids and babies. I should just do what I did with Bobby at this age - make large batches of "dinner muffins" that they like to grab and that contain vegetables. But those are a lot of work and with two kids I just keep finding I'm just not inspired to do it. Or I could just be preoccupied and lazy. It could be that. 

Two things loom heavily in my immediate future - one, my podcast recording Sunday night, and the date Tuesday. I have been re-listening to many of the podcast episodes in order to prep myself, and had a bit of a sobering moment yesterday. In one, a comedian talks about how he ruined a friendship by trying to get this woman to date him, and then the host chimed in with his own stories of trying, and failing, to turn friendships into relationships. They talk about how in those situations you go for the person who is the hardest to "get", ie, emotionally or otherwise unavailable, because it would be such a huge win if it did work out, and so gratifying and such a way to fix being unloved as a child. Is that what I'm doing with this guy??? Please say no!

A couple of things spring to mind - one is, both the host and his guest are happily married. I'd like to know why/how their wives were different than these other women, how the circumstances were different. I'm going to guess nothing was different except that everyone was older and more mature.

Also, apart from being your typical closed-in East Coaster (as am I), nothing tells me that this guy (my Love Interest) is unavailable. If I felt like he was, I wouldn't even be trying any of this. So am I trying to salve old wounds? Is there something so terrible about trying to date someone you really like? I guess it all depends on how you go about it, and how you react to the results. If I jumped on him on our first lunch date, yeah, that would have been inappropriate. If he gives me the ol' "I like you, but..." speech I've heard a thousand times, and I freak out and start crying or being mean, yeah, that would be lame. But I'm not going to do that. I'll just say, "hey, it's all good. Just wanted to put it out there." And then never mention it again. I believe that's the proper way to handle it. And there's nothing wrong with that.

Pretty much nothing of any interest going on for the next several days until these things start happening. I have a terror The Love Interest will suddenly be unavailable Tuesday and say he'll reschedule and then never do it. Oh well, at least if that happens I'll have my answer without even having to ask the question, won't I?

Friday, April 17, 2015

What's shakin', bacon bits?

This is my standard greeting to young Theo, who after nearly two weeks is finally eating normally again! It's also finally my time to shake off any remaining nausea, and Bobby never did get sick. If he does now, I think I can safely assume it's an unrelated incident.

The guy who royally screwed up my dance floor last year called me. He said by way of an apology he wants to provide the (new and improved) floor for free for one of my five classrooms, saving me about $2000 (of course minus the $500 in free passes he wants in exchange). Then he wants me to let him know what everyone thought of the new floor (with an eye to once again being my floor provider in 2016 no doubt). At first I thought, sure, why not? Save $2000? Sure! But luckily I had the presence of mind to tell him I would think about it and get back to him. And once I got off the phone I thought about how much I don't want to be in business with this person, what a freak he was when confronted with his failure last year, and how he's just trying to worm his way back in. So as with all major business decisions these days, I asked myself, if you were a man, what would you do? Turn him down, of course! It always makes things so simple when I just think about it that way. I haven't called him yet, but plan to politely decline, with thanks. If he pushes me for a reason, I'll say, "ummm...because you called one of my most beloved and trusted volunteers a bitch, for starters." Block this member!

Dinner with The Love Interest looms a week from Tuesday. Naturally most of my spare mental energy has been devoted to this. It's the culmination of four months of wooing and twenty years of crushing. The evening will go one of three ways - yes, no, or not now. I was chatting with one of my babysitters about it last night; we both felt like, he has to know an invite to a woman's home for dinner is a date, right? I mean, if a male friend I'd had lunch with a couple of times invited me over to his place one evening, I would know what it meant and either politely decline if I wasn't interested or go with interest. But people don't always act logically. I've been so teased and confused by people in the past, it's hard to trust. We've all been there. I'm just holding onto the fact that a) he's an older man, not some kid, and b) is a long time friend and not some random person I met online who can just treat me like crap and disappear with impunity. That no matter what happens we'll be kind to each other. 

Monday, April 13, 2015

Roller coaster of a weekend

It was a crazy, crazy weekend. Still recovering from the roller coaster.

Thankfully neither boy has been sick. Bobby's still vomit-free and Theo, though still off his food, has not thrown up again and is in good spirits. So, thank goodness for that. Friday night I really did not know what I was in for.

The first thing that happened was as I was strapping Theo into the newly cleaned car seat Saturday morning I discovered the lower latch no longer worked. So I had the choice of ordering a car seat online and not leaving the house until it showed up, or taking my chances driving him with just the chest clip on to go buy one. I chose the latter option. I hastily purchased a convertible seat at Babies R Us, thinking I could just install it in the parking lot. My eyes glazed over the minute I opened the manual. On a whim I called Mom Guru's husband (the one who fixed my flat tire), and sure enough he was home with the kids, so I went over and he very kindly installed it for me. Turns out it was too big for Theo and couldn't be put rear facing, so we made it Bobby's front facing seat (which he was super excited about) and switched Theo to Bobby's Britax. Thank God for other people's husbands, huh?

With the kids feeling ok I was able to do my Saturday night gig and go to today's octogenarian birthday party which I did not want to miss, which was a relief. Missing all of that would have really been a bummer, especially after the week I'd had.

Now here's the roller coaster part. Yes, it involves The Love Interest. I saw him Thursday night at our meeting and of course had our usual nice time, but nothing was mentioned about getting together. So I said fuck it and texted him the next day about coming over for dinner. He wrote back some hours later (after car seat vomit fun) suggesting Thursday, which was of course the only night I couldn't do. Of course. I asked him what other nights he could do. And heard nothing back. Nothing.


This was Friday night. I didn't hear anything at all Saturday when I was dealing with the car seat stuff. And I'll admit freely I was utterly beside myself with dismay. That's it, I thought. I finally asked him for a real date and now he's letting me know he's just not into it (ignoring the fact that he wanted to see me this Thursday). Oh, I won't even get into all the permutations of thought that went on in my brain because it's far too embarrassing. Suffice it to say I freaked out.

Then this morning I got this:

"Stupid iMessage!  Your reply only went to my iPad not my phone.  Sorry I didn't see it earlier...  Week after the 16th is pretty busy.  What day is good for you week of 27th?"

And then:

"Also how did the gig go?  Did you sing the new song?"

Awwwww. I feel like Kyrstie Allie's pathetic character on Cheers chasing after Robin Colcourt - "he loves me again!!!" 

So he's coming over for dinner two weeks from Tuesday. And things will happen that night. Either fireworks, or "I like you, but..." He's not leaving this house without an answer one way or the other, dammit.

I have to say I have new respect for the handful of guys who have had the balls to ask me out on a date in the past, especially since I unintentionally became the Queen Bee in this swing dance scene here in LA. This shit is all-consuming and hard and a total mind fuck, especially when all players hold their cards close to their chest as I always do (old New York defense mechanism). Yes, I mocked them a little bit at the time because I was way out of their league(s), but hey, they swallowed their fear, called me up, and asked me on a date. They didn't just stay home and jerk off to Internet porn; they took a chance with a real girl. Hats off to them, every one.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Stomach bug, 2. Me, 0.

...aaaand now the baby's sick. Fuck fuckity fuck fuck.

It's been a rough week, people. Yesterday we had B's three year checkup at 3 and I felt so lousy and nauseated I decided to just drive the kids around all day until then because I just couldn't do anything else, and so I did. We go home for lunch and diaper changes, then pile back in for the appointment, go through all the rigmarole of navigating the giant and packed parking lot, multiple elevators and stairs and hallways and lines, only to be told they have no record of my appointment and nobody else is available for the rest of the day so we'll just have to come back tomorrow. Oh perfect.

Went in this morning only to have Bobby throw a crying, screaming, flopping on the floor fit when we tried to get him to stand against the wall to be measured, or even worse, stand on the scale. He did this at his two year appointment, too. I don't understand it; nothing would calm him down, and I had been talking to him about this for days explaining what was going to happen and he had sounded very enthusiastic about it. It's so weird. The entirely unsympathetic nurse just sighed an exasperated sigh and said, "well, we have to be able to measure him!" And...what?

The doctor saw him and was *sort of* able to look in his ears and listen to his heart, but we have no growth chart, so really the whole traumatic thing was an utter waste of time. But, I couldn't not bring him because then I'd just be shitty and negligent. Luckily he didn't need shots or blood tests today. And we have his first ever dental appointment on Tuesday that I'm sure will be the same screaming mess and utter waste of time. Sigh.

Then when I got B to school, and bought a carload of groceries because we'd been living on scraps for days, Theo was kind of cranky and refusing to eat anything all day. Just as I was pulling up to pick up B at school, Theo projectile vomited what seemed like ten gallons of crap all over himself and the car. It just kept going and going. So, that explained why so fussy all day. Then I had to drag his slimy, pukey mess out of the car to get B at school, and of course they were running late and I had to stand there for fifteen minutes with my soaked, miserable, and foul-smelling baby while Bobby had his last snack of the day and ate it with the tiniest little bites imaginable, and I weighed the consequences of leaving a puking baby with a sitter while I went to my singing gig tonight.

I decided it was not worth it nor fair to the sitter nor advisable to leave Theo (and probably now Bobby) sick at home without me, and so canceled everything. Don't know if I will have to cancel tomorrow night's gig, too, or the eighty-year-old's birthday party I committed to going to Sunday or the mom's night out that night, too. And of course I have zero plans any other weekend but this one. Of course.

I spent the evening letting Bobby eat cup after cup of strawberry yogurt for dinner because I just couldn't be buggered, while I painstakingly dismantled Theo's car seat so I could clean the puke that had invaded every single part of it. Everything had to be soaked and scrubbed and put in the washing machine. I don't have the faintest idea how to put all the pieces back together. 

Now I'm waiting for Bobby to start throwing up all over his room. Oh, it's going to happen. No use trying to pretend it won't.

And I still feel like crap, nearly a week later. This bug has been the worst I've ever had. I'm officially in hell. 

It really makes me feel like all those times I threw up when I was a kid, it must have been just normal childhood illnesses, not that I was "sensitive" or "upset" or whatever other excuse my mother made. Having zero understanding of germ theory or how the body or illness works, it makes sense that what I experienced was normal and part of childhood. Everyone I know now, it seems, goes through this several times a year. This is just going to be my lot for a while. It makes me so angry that anyone, myself and my kids included, have to accept this kind of disruption to our lives and abject misery weeks out of every year. But I guess it could be so much worse - life is for most people in the world. Ugh.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Stomach bug, 1. Me, 0.

Woke up Monday at about 6 AM not feeling quite right. This immediately moved into extreme nausea. There are few things worse than feeling like that, hearing your children waking up, and saying to yourself, "oh my god, how am I going to do this?"

Thank God one of my sitters just happened to be free and was at the house by 11AM. So after stumbling around like a nauseated zombie for a few hours, I was "off" and took to bed while the sitter took the kids to the park. This is what people with partners feel like, I thought, while I curled up in bed in the middle of the day with a good book.

I loaded up on the nux vomica but it didn't help at all. So, so much for that.

The sitter helped with bedtime and I tried to stave off the waves of nausea all night, finally puking my guts out while Brokeback Mountain played on the TV in the background. Good times. Why is the stomach bug like this? Why are you tortured with nausea for 24 hours before it finally "wraps up"? Why??

Got almost no sleep and called the sitter back in for another full day yesterday. All of this blew my entire babysitting budget for the month of April, but it had to be done. Normal activities resumed today with B back at school, parent/teacher conferences (another good report), cleaning up, loads of laundry, cooking, and taking out of bags and bags of garbage. It's amazing how just a couple of days off my game and everything falls apart around here.

A friend recently remarked how amazing it is that Theo is completely dependent on me, and what a huge responsibility that is. Times like these really remind me how true this is. Mom can't be sick, or absent, or depressed, or lazy. Mom has to be on, all the time. And luckily, unless I'm sick, I am pretty much on all the time. Because you kind of just have to be.

I'm still a little shaky but at least able to function. Now I am just crossing my fingers that the kids don't get it. I had an episode like this a year ago where I was sick all day but the kids, including tiny one-month-old Theo, were fine. So let's hope this goes the same way.

Lots going on in the next few days - back to back singing gigs and an octogenarian birthday party this weekend, and my monthly meeting where I see The Love Interest tomorrow night. Still feeling like a stupid idiot that I think he and I could ever be together, but as with so many things in life I'm just going to push through the agony and go for it anyway.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Easter didn't suck this year

Just when I was feeling bad about not spending the last few weeks making cute little felt animals, baking coconut-topped Easter cupcakes, and weaving hand made personalized Easter baskets for both boys, I did manage to take us to a little public egg hunt down at our ghetto park and we actually had a great time. It was a far cry from the disorganized zoo of an Easter party I had the misfortune of attending last year.

What a difference a year makes! Bobby is such a different kid at just three instead of just two. He knows how to do things. I have to worry much less about him being trampled or pushed or falling off things. I hope this continues for the rest of our lives - that as the boys get older and more capable, things become more fun and easy. Yes, he got overstimulated and melted down a bit, but he's now capable of saying, "I need big hugs" and, once administered, he always completely turns around. I'm so glad he learned how to ask for what he really needs in those moments. I observed a dad telling his crying daughter to "get over it" and later calling his son "dummy". So I may not always win all the parenting awards, but I'm doing a better job than that guy. That guy sucks.