Tuesday, June 21, 2011

My Fault

I am super confused right now. I have a male friend. We worked together in the past from 1997-2004. I have adored him for years (in a purely platonic way). We have stayed friends since. We regularly correspond and meet for lunch about once a month.

Last time we went out to lunch, he made some suggestive comments about how good I was looking and that we should ditch lunch and head to a hotel. I laughed it off. He often expresses sexual frustration in his marriage. As a friend, I let him vent and I have no problem with listening to him talk. (Keep in mind, he was a good friend to me when I got divorced and subsequently went on a dating/sex bender of epic proportion and I did share with him limited details of my escapades)

Recently there was a negative turn of events at the company he works for and he's seeking new employment. I suggested he talk to my boss about coming to work here. They have met several times now and are at the point where they are negotiating an offer. So his coming to work here is looking promising.

Last week, I got a text from him. He asked me about the cell phone plan here at our office and I replied and then he said:
"Hope we will be together soon. Any dating going on with you?"

Me: I have dipped my toe back in the dating waters...I'll fill you in later.

Him: Ok, always like the sexy details things are slow here so I like hearing things. Gives me things to think about for later. very lonely. text me details"

Me: It's not those kind of details...there has been none of that and will not be anytime soon.

Him: Well maybe we need to fix that for both of us. not sure how to make it happen. I know it is awkward but it is always on my mind.

Me: I don't need fixing, I'm all set.

Him: [Wife] is working...what to do all alone?

Me: How's her new job going?

Him: Sorry but really horny, sorry to embarass you but need something

Me: I totally understand. I'm not embarassed, I just love our friendship too much to go there.

Him: I hear you but I definitely think about it. About you.

OK, so....you see what I do there? I dance around and at the end, I am taking care of his feelings despite the fact that in my living room I'm screaming at my phone "Nooooooo!!!! Don't do this!!! Don't say this shit to me!!! Don't put me in this position!!"

So now I'm at the point where I could still go to my boss and tell him not to make this deal happen and I'm totally on the fence. The thing is I am accustomed to men talking to me in disrespectful ways and I'm not sure it appalls me anywhere near as much as it should. I am empathizing with him, I am taking care of his feelings. And I'm excusing the behavior and quite honestly, I have ZERO idea how I really feel about it.

I think if he worked here it would be fine. But I'm not sure. And I just want to give him the benefit of the doubt that he will behave himself and that was a momentary lapse in judgment sending me those texts. But he was suggestive at our lunch and he has been flirtatious in our correspondence since then. I think if I put him firmly in his place with this topic that he would respect me and so naturally, I am 5 years old again and I think this is my fault....I'm not speaking up, I'm not saying no. I'm leading him on by not being definitive with my words and by being all understanding. So if he puts his hands on me, it will be my fault.

I worry that if I say what I need to say, he will not be my friend anymore and I know....I get that #1 I don't need friends like that and #2 if he were to get mad at me for that then he was not being a real friend and all that. But then I worry about causing problems at work if he does come to work here. I can't end up unhappy in this job that I've come to really love. And so, I don't know what to do. Or how to do what I know I need to do.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The 50 Cent Tour

What would you do if the President of the United States personally called you on the phone and invited you to come and see the White House? You'd be pretty excited, right? Feel pretty important that he, himself called to request your presence? Get all primped and prepped, looking your best for your introduction? Now what if, when you arrived at the White House, you learned you were simply being thrown in on the 50 cent tour with every other DC tourist? And, you still had to pay your own admission.

I have my issues with God. They are plentiful. I'm not going to claim they are logical. And I will not say they really have anything to do with Him, per se.

My father is essentially an athiest. Non-declared, as far as I know but made his position pretty clear. My mother threw herself into the church when I was a child. I think she felt it was her only hope to save her marriage and perhaps her sanity. She dragged me along for the ride.

Some pretty un-God-ly things have happened in my life and I get that "into each life a little rain must fall." I get that "that which does not kill us makes us stronger." I don't really ask why events of my life occurred the way they did. I accept that it all happened for a purpose. I'm still not entirely clear what it is....but so be it.

In my late teens/early 20's, I was a hot mess. I hadn't faced my abusive past. I was running around, drinking, partying, promiscuous, irresponsible and flat out putting myself in grave danger. There was a Sunday morning that I woke up and knew, without shadow of doubt, that God was speaking to me. I realized I was on a destructive path and I was compelled to get myself to church that very morning and turn my life around. That was the presidential invitation to the White House. And the 50 cent tour followed. I don't understand how I felt so called only to then feel so lost immediately thereafter. What was the point? Why call me here and then throw me into the crowd on my own?

I can intellectualize my God issues. I mean, first and foremost, he's a Father. THE Father, for heaven's sake. I shy away from fathers in my life as best I can. Experience has been a harsh teacher.

Secondly, and this is an odd one to verbalize because I believe in God but, what if it's all crap? I mean...where did the bible really come from? Who really interpreted it? How do we know if everything that is being taught is really what was intended? There are many faiths throughout the world and they all believe theirs is the only truth. So how do I know I'm onto the right one? At the end of the day, in church, it's regular people delivering the message in their own words. How do we know they are the right and true words?

Third, there is this whole trust and vulnerability business. Trust God. Really? Trust an entity that, yes I believe in but, I cannot see or experience in any tangible way. Give Him my worries? That is crazy talk. I cling to my worries. Why give them over to something I am so unsure about? Give up control?? Agh. I mean, just shoot me now if you're going to ask me to do that. Can't we CO-control, God? Baby steps for this retentive freak?? A little teamwork, Sir? I am afraid to even talk to Him because I question the validity of the whole situation. I am hesitant to put it in black and white but I don't want to put my energy and faith into something that turns out to be false. And again, I stress that I do believe in God but I just am not sure in what capacity.

We've started going to a new church because I want to face and explore these issues. It's the perfect place for me because it's not a nicey-nice, low key, pleasant, hear the short generic sermon & then run out to Sunday brunch type of church. This is a community of faith and fellowship. It's a pastor who is passionate and not afraid to challenge his parishoners. We've been there twice and I've been moved to tears both times. I've felt the discomfort of having my walls rumbled. I've looked on at people openly, unabashedly expressing their faith while I sit, legs crossed, arms crossed, tightly protected.

I am not certain if I feel that God's promises don't really exist or just don't exist for me. I am not sure I feel worthy of love, forgiveness, answered prayer. I don't pray. I am very closed off to it. Every time I do it, I feel like I'm speaking to no one and being a ridiculous fool.

I feel this is the right time and right place for me to be but I've felt that before and been left with more questions than answers. I hope that I am able to open up and start to see things in a different light.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Dear Bio-Father,

I know what I need to do with Bianca's bio-father.
And I'm gearing up to do it. In the meantime, I'm feeling like there are things I want to say to him in order to terminate this correspondence we have going. But they are things he doesn't deserve to know about me. So I will write them here in hopes that it will help to strengthen me to take the next step with him.

Dear A.,

I have to admit that I never anticipated my quick IM to you would turn into a conversation. In fact, I was 99% certain you would immediately block me from seeing you online ever again, possibly even change your username so I could not track you down. The remaining 1% just thought you would not respond at all. I spent the first two hours of our conversation with absolute knots and butterflies in my stomach. Wanting to tell you things, wanting to know things, thrilled that you were finally showing interest in your daughter.

You asked if I hated you and I told you I don't. Do I? No, hate is a useless, soul-sucking emotion that I have no use for. But A, I'm pissed at you. When my mind cleared later, I began to recount our past. You lied to me from day one about who you were, what your life was all about and what you wanted from me. You played me. I was fresh out of a divorce, newly into the dating world and naive as hell. I was open, honest, vulnerable and trusting. I shared with you unabashedly from my heart. You fully took advantage of those qualities in me. We spoke every day for 8 months and at the end of it, I had no idea who you really were. The man I was so enamored with, who I dared to imagine a future with, was a total farce. I always marveled how you were so consistently charming and never failed to have the exact right thing to say at the right time. Too good to be true. Indeed.

I'm going to take responsibility for my part in this. I had blinders on. I never questioned red flag items that would now make me run for the hills. But I wanted to believe you. I needed to believe you. And so, I chose to believe you. And you played me. Yet, at the end of it, I have my beautiful baby and I won't ever regret that. But I do sometimes regret that she has no father in her life. And I guess that is why I got so caught up in talking to you again so quickly. I thought maybe there was a glimmer than I could fill that void in her life.

Not that long into talking, you began to introduce some innuendo of a flirtatous nature. At first I thought I was misreading it. I mean, it's not possible you could be so stupid and brazen, right? Haven't we been down this road? You cannot possibly think I'd go down it again, can you? But you persisted and left no doubt in my mind....you are hitting on me. I am still, days later, shaking my head in disbelief. Since when does "I don't hate you" translate into "I think I'd like to sleep with you again after you totally tore my life apart"?? It just solidifies the sentiment that "the more things change, the more they stay the same." You are the same selfish, cocky, thoughtless, sorry excuse of a man that you were 7 years ago. I, on the other hand, am NOT the pathetic, trusting, foolish, naive girl that I was 7 years ago. Thank you for that because you are a big reason I am no longer that girl.

I struggle with shutting the door because I want to give you credit for being a better man than you are. I hold this tiny glimmer of belief that if I say just the right thing in just the right way at just the right time, it will penetrate that thick skull of yours and you will have an epiphany. Actually, I should not be aiming for your skull since your brain is clearly below your belt, LOL. In any case....I am afraid to let go of that tiny flicker that you will change into the man you should and could be if you'd just see things in a different light. I accept that this is faulty thinking on my part and there is no way in hell you will ever be more than who are now, who you have been for the 8 years I've known you and who you will likely always be. I release that hope and I release you. I do not need you. Bianca does not need you.



Why at the end of writing all these things I fully feel and believe am I still in nervous knots about deleting him from my contacts? Why do I still want to hit his name on IM right now and have a conversation with him? Dear God, what is wrong with me?????????

Monday, June 13, 2011

What The Hell Am I Doing?

You know, sometimes the task of unloading everything on my mind is so daunting, I just stare at the blank screen with absolutely no idea how it's all going to get from there to here. One word, one letter at a time seems insurmountable. This is when I really want to kick myself for not keeping up with regularly writing.

I have so much to do at work today yet I can't focus on anything except the need to write and figure out what I am doing.

I was supposed to go to court this week for child support because Bianca's bio-father stopped paying for several months. Shortly after I got the notice of hearing, he started paying again. Last week, I called the court to find out if that meant that the hearing was cancelled. They do not cancel the hearing for that reason but after talking with the clerk, she said if I wanted her to, she would go ahead and cancel it. Believe me, I do not want to travel (2 states away) to court if it's not completely necessary so yes, I wanted it cancelled. She called me back later to find out if I could let bio-father know because she was unable to get in touch with him. I told her we do not talk so she said she would send him a letter but was unsure if it would get to him before the court date.

Shortly thereafter, I was in my email. I keep his contact information in there just in case there is ever an emergency in which I need to contact him. So what do you know....he was online at that moment. Feeling a surge of nice-ness, I decided to IM him and let him know. I just said something like "hey, wanted to let you know that court was cancelled. they were not able to reach you and asked me to let you know. here's the contact info so you can verify with the clerk" At this point, I *fully* anticipated he would go offline and block me forever. Instead, he IMed back with a thank you. Then a minute later IMed and said "I don't suppose I can be so bold as to just say hello and ask how you are?" Man, talk about butterflies in your stomach..... I haven't spoken to this man in any sort of civil manner in 7 years. Now he wants to know how I am? He asked about Bianca. He asked for a picture of her. He told me he thinks about her all the time.

I can imagine from the outside, this all looks very cut and dry. He has no business, right? He made his decision, right? But I'm not on the outside and what is happening is testing me at every turn. I should maybe hate him but I don't. I hate the position he put me in. I hate that he deceived me and played me. I hate that I cared for him a great deal. On the other hand, he gave me the greatest blessing of my life. We created a life together and whether I want it or not, I am tied to him forever through her.

Now I've entered this slippery slope of chatting with him. I have no doubt I am being foolish. I want things from him that he cannot give me. I want honesty from him and I don't know that he's capable of that. Even if he is being honest....I still don't trust him. What does he want from me right now? And what do I want? And what is the point of all this? Because really, there is no reason for us to be talking. He is not prepared to be in her life in a meaningful way and I won't allow anything less. When I talk to him, I want to do one of two things. I want to spill my guts about the last 7 years. But I want him to do the same and he won't because well #1 - he's a guy and not all about gushing his feelings and thoughts about the past. I think he has ulterior motives. Oh let's call a spade a spade....I am sure he has motives. Because at the end of our first conversation, he was trying to turn the conversation in an R-rated direction. I didn't let it go that way but I'll tell you.....it's hard not to. I mentioned that I want to do one of two things when I talk to him. Flirt is #2. I guess it's familiar and it deflects all these intense emotions and the confusion I'm feeling. I refuse to go there because there is just no point. I mean honestly.....did I not learn the first time around? I did, right? So then WHY am I still talking to him? Because I want him to be something he is not. I want him to appreciate and cherish the life we created together. I want him to be her father. He is her sperm donor, basically. And I was cool with that for a long time and now he's here and he's throwing me for a loop. And I know the smartest thing for me to do is to shut this door and walk away and stop talking to him but I don't want to. Why don't I want to???

I left this post there last night and today I'm back. I spent some time sorting through some feelings and I just see how this is triggering my most vulnerable topic which is my own father issues. I desperately wanted my father to be someone he was not. It took me a long, long time to make peace with the truth. And this is like round 2 of daddy issues. Just like my own father, Bianca's father is not capable of being the man she needs in her life. I hate that. And just like with my own father, I am reluctant to close the door because I foolishly, erroneously think that if I can say or do *just* the right thing that it will magically strike just the right nerve and transform him into the man he should be. Bullshit.

I feel in a quandary right now. I *should* walk away. I am plagued by moronic what-if's. What if I close the door on this and I never hear from him again? What if this could be something and I cut it off right now before giving it a chance? What if he's changed? The answers are, unequivocably, 1: so what, 2: you should and 3: he hasn't. And I KNOW this without question.

Today I stayed off chat so I would not have a chance to talk to him. Of course, a few minutes ago I signed into my email and up popped an offline message he sent me last night. And I'm struggling to keep my distance. My heart wants something that my brain knows will never happen. There is a paralyzing fear in me of closing the door even though I know with absolute certainty that it's the right thing to do. Why is it SO damn hard to do the right thing sometimes?