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Wednesday, October 8, 2008

In today's missed connections...





Actually, it was yesterday, now. Reading this ad I was instantly moved by it; this guy's situation is so close to my own, in some ways, and the words he chose, the expressions & explanations echo many of the same sentiments I carry inside as well. The ad has a few things that are obviously unknowable unless you were the woman he was talking about, talking to, but nonetheless it's still captivating and powerful. I'm reposting it as I found it, spelling errors and all:

"Stella (financial district)


Stell,

So here is the thing.
Saw your e-mail in the midst of my day, and thought to myself, ah, she remembers the date too.
Even with all the festivities and fealty that she is receiving right now. Very nice. And even better that she made time to tell me.
But funny she thinks it was at C&L. Gotta set her straight on that. And why does she think that is in the F.D.? WTF? Blondes. Harrumph.

Then, as I’m talking on the phone with a client about an hour ago, I suddenly remember that time in college when the guy at Taco Bell asked my friend Jen if she wanted to add anything to her order, and she said, looking at me, do you sell clues here? Because I was being an idiot then, and I was being one today.

Not C&L, but CL. Oh, right. Had it all the way. This MC does not go to Houston. Jesus. Sorry.

So thanks very, very much for your post, which I just read for the first time.
You’ve been direct, so let me reciprocate:

I similarly feel lucky. Very, very lucky. All false modesty aside, I honestly have no idea what I did to make you like me, or why you do. Was not part of the plan, was not something I was aiming to do. I've told you before, but your theory about me putting myself out there just to be liked, and then I withdraw, is just wrong. But in not liking myself very much, it caused me to spend an inordinate amount of time in the beginning of this relationship trying to figure out why you were with me, whether you were getting back at someone, and whether there was some other unaddressed issue for which you were compensating. (I now know of course, that you just needed to finally be with someone who had good musical taste. Took me a while to figure that one out.)

I don’t engage in a relationship like this on a whim, as you hopefully believe by now,and I don't believe that you do either.
Things in many respects are as great as they can be under the circumstances.
Ah, but those circumstances . . .

The problem, as I tried to explain after Lucky 13 in a very Tipsy McStagger kind of way, is that given the status/risks here I often find myself needing certain very unrealistic assurances from you, and I ultimately explained in painful detail what these were. And I just don’t think it was there for you on the same level that I needed it to be, and I say this because your reax to me that night was pretty much the same that I gave to someone else in a prior situation, where they told me that they needed similar rather extreme emotional commitments from me and I wasn’t quite feeling it at the necessary level that they wanted me to. And there ain’t no going back from that once you’ve said it. This I know.

There is so much love here, I promise you.
There is much frustration and anger too.
None of it directed at you.
You are just finally seeing it now for the reasons I explained last time I saw you.
It is not new.
You seeing it is what is new.
But if you think that it is directed at you, further confirmation that I'm breaking down a bit.


So I’ve thought about it a lot, and I’m not sure what you can do either.
I will tell you what I think would help.

1.
The things that you don’t care to admit to me, the things on which you bite your tongue, the things which you are unable to tell me for whatever reason – these are the things that it would really, really help if you can tell me a bit more. I know that this is asking a lot. Exposure in a way like that guy on the movie poster I told you I wanted to see at EC. But it will really help if you can find a way to do it. Just telling me you're sorry, you don't know how to say what you're feeling, isn't going to work any more. I was stunned by a lot of what you wrote today -- you've never said anything even remotely close to this to me, it really helped, and I had no idea about a lot of it. Plus don’t worry about crying in response to anything I tell you. It pains me so much to see you in that state, but it isn’t going to keep me from telling you what I'm feeling. If anything, it tells me I’m connecting. Helpful.



2.
Be straight with me. I’ve explained to you my situation, and I told you (perhaps foolishly) that I would take some comfort if your situation is similar to mine. You go out of your way, I believe, to try to give me that comfort, by downplaying that you do things with your S.O. so as to not offend or worry me. Please believe me that this doesn’t need to be a concern on your part. I know now our situations are different, and I can only tell you that in no way, shape, or form am I even remotely jealous of your S.O. You don’t need to tell me anything about what is going on with you there, and I don’t expect it, but if you do, please don’t try to couch things in a way that you think will be more tolerable for me. THAT is what makes me feel bad, when I learn that you still feel like you have to soften the edges for me. Because then trust issues start to form.
Not what either one of us wants.
Or needs.
Or deserves.

You want me to trust you to tell you anything.
You need to feel that same trust.


It is brutal to not see you for so long. I think this will be about the longest we have ever gone without seeing each other. But part of the reason I am so miserable is not just the milestone occurring for you personally that I will not witness or share in (although that is a lot of it, believe me) – it is also because it is a reminder of, for lack of a better term, reality, which I often am otherwise able to dodge for extensive periods of time. You trusted me enough, and you did so very early on, to share with me some very painful, very awful, very terrible secrets regarding your current relationship. Notwithstanding those things, you chose to stick with it, have kids, build a family, etc., obviously because there is, or at least was, much good, love, light and happiness to more than offset those not so good things (and naturally you are not going to rave about all of those good things to me -- I get that). And I’ve made no secret of my guilt issues. So look, my point is that I know you’re where you need to be, and with whom you need to be with, for this occasion, and that is the other part that I have to just cope with.
Just please do me this favor. Enjoy this week so much (although make sure everyone knows it is to be all about you -- especially your mom, as I can totally envision her trying to steal the spotlight). It is rare to have the opportunity to have all of your friends and family together, and you already know firsthand that they won’t be around forever, so savor that time with all of them. I hope it measures up, if not surpasses, to that day of days, when you were on the beach with your girlfriends.

I will be here when you get back, because I will always be here for you, no matter the state of our relationship.

We will talk then, and perhaps you can tell me how I get the last five years. I wasn’t going back any earlier to the night you foolishly wore that tight shirt to the dinner, but I’m happy to be corrected.

I am of course selfishly very happy to hear you say that you think your life is better with me in it.
I’m admittedly confused about what to do.
But not how I feel about you.

Lost of words here, huh? Tired and wired, makes Homer something something something too easy.
But in the end, it is simple:
Five years ago tonight I met a girl who appeared to me to be very sad and unhappy.
I love that girl, and I want to make her happy."

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