At first I felt like I’d met my secret Prince Charming. Why secret you say? Well because he was a client and we aren’t allowed to date clients. Then he eventually said he wanted to see me all the time and didn’t want to worry about that client stuff and he got off the case load. I breathed a sigh of relief and thought… Finally! We could see each other free and clear.
Oh! But no.
He explained quite earnestly how much he had missed and loved his two youngest children over the last year during his unfortunate and undeserved incarceration. (See Turning Piles of Shit into Gold) He further explained that his then still wife might “throw snake eyes” at him having a girlfriend.
I’m really thinking to myself, “Um…isn’t this the woman that according to all accounts left the state with those two children and left the two older children to fend for themselves and is even now as we speak shacked up with her internet lover?”
That’s what I was thinking, but what I said was, “You are such a good dad to want to be able to see those babies.” I know, it’s vomit inducing. I can only explain my outward reaction by saying that I was still in the throes of swooning lust and looking at all of this through what can only be explained as darkly rose colored glasses.
He wouldn’t introduce me to his older children, he wouldn’t meet my children, he wouldn’t be seen with me in public but none of that stopped him from sneaking into my newly rented house after my children were asleep and ravishing me half the night and sneaking out after I’d put them on the bus every morning and sometimes even staying in my bed, in my house after I’d left for work. This went on for months.
I watched him from afar at the youth rodeos with his children, I waited for him to call, and I waited for him to show up at night. So as any idiotic, clingy, dreamy-eyed dipshit would do, I eventually started to gently probe for answers about our future. He was always saying, “You know I can’t have a normal relationship, my wife will get crazy and not let me see my darling babies.” Well the real me was beginning to come back to her senses somewhat and I was getting a little irritated.
I was falling so in love with him and his constant protestations that I shouldn’t “get too attached” made me start to falter. I began to feel insecure, whiny, and even clingier. This in turn made me hate myself, but not enough to keep him from sneaking into my house and into my bed.
Then, it happened. I had an epiphany one night whereby my saner-self made an appearance.
We were talking about candy of all things because my man pleaser clingy whiny self was trying to figure out what he liked and store away in the vault for future opportunities to make him happy. He says he likes Peeps at Easter. You know the marshmallow sugary lumps of brightly colored bunnies and chicks…yuck, but whatever.
I said, “Well I’ll have to get you some.” It was October.
He says, “I may not be around then.”
I rolled over with a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach, went to sleep and when I got up and got the kids gone and got dressed for work, I woke him up.
“Hey, you need to wake up. I’m going to need you to take some time and clear your stuff out of here today.”
He sat up scratching his head and staring at me. “What are you talking about? Wait a minute. What’s going on?”
I told him simply, “I’m falling in love with you. You’re constantly saying you’re not sticking around. I owe it to myself to be with someone that wants me and wants to stick with me. I don’t want to be any more hurt than I already am and if we drag this on any longer, I will be. You need to head on down the road while I still have some dignity.”
He just kept scratching his head. “Let me think a minute.” To which I told him not to worry about thinking it over, just to get his stuff and get gone.
I was strong when I left for the office. I felt like I’d made a great choice. I felt sad but wise and strong and smart. That lasted for 3 hours. I rushed home at lunch and ran into my bedroom and opened the drawer, his drawer that I’d proudly cleared out for him and placed his laundered things in when he left them with me. It was empty.
I crumpled to the floor and cried. I asked myself, “Why are you crying?” He was obviously just sleeping with me on the down low for his own selfish reasons. He never said he loved me, he had me doing his errands as often as possible, and he had me cashing his checks and was keeping me at arm’s length.
I got up, reapplied my make-up and went back to work. The next three days were out of control on many levels. Let’s just say there was a Halloween party and a stranger and shenanigans as I tried to wash it all away with alcohol and irresponsibility. Three days later, I got a call. It was him. I answered it and said I had to get home and I couldn’t meet him. He asked to come by and I did not object.
I was cooking dinner when he walked back into my house. He backed me up against the kitchen wall and took me without a word right there next to the fried fish and potatoes. It was once again exciting and bosom-heaving and exhilarating.
When we got up off the kitchen floor, I resumed fixing dinner and waited for him to make his exit since it was Sunday and my children would be returning from their weekend at Granny’s. He never came back from the living room. I went around and he was there, on the couch in his sock feet watching a movie.
“My kids will be here any minute. You probably want to clear out.”
He just looked at me and said, “I’ll stay if that’s alright with you.”
I was tearfully joyfully overwhelmed and happy but quietly just said, “Yes, that’s fine.”
Because that’s what he did. He withheld until his hand was forced. Then he weighed his options. Staying in my home, eating my cooking, using my checking account, my errand services and my body were enough reward for him to give me a small snippet of him. And I snapped it up like I was starving.
I guess maybe I was.