It’s Not Me, It’s Him

Cookie was out of town all last week, and we have plans to get together tonight.

I really like this guy and I’m happy about spending time with him later.

He’s excited to hang out with me; I know he is. And he makes me feel there’s more. He makes me feel like he really sees me. It’s nice. He enjoys my company and it’s nice.

My self-esteem isn’t so horribly low that it is surprising that he sees me and likes me. I think my reaction says more about my recent experiences with men than my respect for self. I know I’m worth knowing. Someone recognizing it is a nice change of pace.

Not just someone. A man who I admire and enjoy and think is sexy and goofy as hell.

I can’t wait to see him.

However, it might not happen. 

He’s getting over a stomach bug, but he felt like he was on the mend yesterday. This morning, he texted and said he’s feeling a bit worse. He said he was taking a half day off work and he’d keep me posted about tonight. 

My knee-jerk reaction is, “Poor guy.” I don’t think he’s lying to me. And yet, there are people in the world who will fabricate an illness in order to keep options open for an evening’s plans.

Gut instinct screams he isn’t that guy. I trust him in this.

More than anything, I’m feeling preemptive disappointment. I’ve been looking forward to seeing him. It will be sad if it doesn’t happen.

My old anxious attachment mindset is popping up as well, though. I have to remind myself if he bails it won’t specifically be because of anything about me. I know this. Deep down inside, I know this to be true.

But I also know he’s very busy this whole week and going out of town again next week. Which means, if we don’t see each other until his return, three weeks without being face to face.

Would his interest continue for that long without seeing me? Would mine?

It’s a silly thing to be anxious about. If interest can’t withstand a few weeks of busy schedules, it likely isn’t all that intense an interest.

Still, it would be disappointing, and my real disappointment in potentially not seeing him tonight is getting conflated with imagined disappointment about never seeing him again.

I see it. I recognize it. I am watching it and doing my best to separate the two feelings.

There is the feeling I accept about current reality: potentially not seeing him tonight. This feeling of somewhat mild disappointment is healthy and understandable, and I’m allowing that feeling. I am fully feeling that feeling.

But then there’s the feeling about potentially never seeing him again. It’s a feeling about a fantasy scenario. I am struggling with that one. It’s a big feeling, an intense feeling, and it’s about a nonexistent situation. It’s on my mind, whether I want it to be or not. In my heart, I’m already mourning him.

I’m struggling against being sad about not knowing this man anymore even though nothing in my current reality shows that as a real possibility.

A real possibility, though, it is. This fact exists: he’s just some dude I’m barely starting to get to know. If he fades into the woodwork I’ll likely have forgotten him completely within a short time span.

It’s not what I want to see happen, but it could. Easily. That’s the nature of dating.

For now, I’ll sit, and observe, and see what happens. I’ll continue acting and feeling things in a manner that is true to my authentic self and my present reality. I’ll be me and either he will love me or he will not.

And if he doesn’t, so be it. It implies nothing about who I am, about my validity as a human being. I know this. I feel this.

I’ll be okay. This is such a small thing.

Once upon a time, these real and imagined scenarios would have thrown me into total turmoil.

Today, I’m a little sad. And that’s all. And I’m proud of that.

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