and we return to normal life

Alas, I’m home alone tonight.  The Boy was radio silent yesterday, which I’ve learned means he doesn’t want to break bad news.  Indeed.  He’s not feeling well, so he thought it best to stay in this weekend, catch up on sleep and try to head off impending illness.

That’s probably true.  I have no way of knowing, of course, and while I don’t think he would necessarily lie to me, I also don’t have complete faith that he didn’t change his mind.  He’s always been a complicated mix of interested and distanced, and I can’t help but wonder if the status quo is returning.

Which is a shame, because this was fun.  He was a nice distraction, something to look forward to, someone to laugh with at the end of the day.  I had hoped it would last a bit.  I have a feeling – and that’s all it is, but my gut is usually pretty good – that the cold feet have arrived and I won’t see him again in any sort of “together” capacity.

Here’s the thing: I don’t doubt that he likes me, in that he enjoys my company (in every sense of the word).  But he doesn’t quite know what to make of this – it isn’t really a relationship, per se – and he’s still a little in thrall to the former professor, a.k.a mentor, view of me.  If we were close, maybe it would be easier to get over those things but the distance makes it hard to just be casual.  One of us has to travel and that means there’s more thinking involved in the whole.  And let’s face it, thinking just leads to overthinking – and here we find ourselves.

Ah, well.  I won’t object if he decides he’d like to see me again but I think I need to gather myself, laugh at the silliness of it all and get back to normal life.

So, normal: I had some meetings on campus this morning but I was back home by the early afternoon. Without a visitor this evening, I had plenty of time to work so I took care of some emails and offered feedback on a colleague’s paper. I also finished reading the last set of papers, figured up my grades for both classes and submitted them. Semester is officially over!

I do have to brag about my students this semester.  They were wonderful, as their final papers proved over and over again: thoughtful, critical, intelligent, humorous.  I actually enjoyed reading their work and seeing just how much they’ve developed over the semester.  Their grades were off the charts: nothing lower than a B – and, trust me, with what I threw at them this semester, that is quite a feat.  I just had fun with them this fall; I really enjoyed interacting with them in the classroom, even as I was pushing them to do more than they thought they could.  A professor can only wish to have the students I had this semester.  I feel a little sorry for the kids having to follow them next semester!

I still need to do some Christmas cards.  I’ll do some for the family and very close friends, but I think I’m done after that.  I’m thinking maybe a New Year’s card is the way to go this year.  I just don’t have it in me to get through 40+ cards this weekend…

oh, boy

Evidently,The Boy is having the same sort of week I’m having.  Finals week isn’t pretty at any level; he’s managing freaked out adolescents, I’m managing freaked out college students, and we both have too much grading.

Evidently, The Boy thinks seeing me this weekend would improve his week immensely.  How funny: I feel much the same way.

Evidently, The Boy likes me.  The evidence points in that direction for me, too.

I’m still a little giggly over all this – and I plan to enjoy it as long as I possibly can.

when you’re a bad friend

I had a moment today when I had to face the harsh truth that I have been an awful friend to someone in my life.  And that just sucks.

My girlfriend and I came in together here at PRU all those years ago.  We were the two single girls; we had some interests in common; we got along; we enjoyed each other’s company.  The first few years, we were usually together once or twice a week, grabbing lunch on campus or meeting for drinks on the weekend or going to the symphony on a special occasion.

Then she got married.  And that’s not a good reason to stop doing things together but it did make things more difficult.  Admission: I have never been fond of the man she married.  I hate to say it but I have very good radar when it comes to friends’ significant others (my own? not so much); if you’re a prick, I’ve got you pinned in 2.5 seconds – and rarely have I been proven wrong.  Unfortunately, I was very right about this asshole.  Over the years, and with the addition of children, her life has gotten much harder.  We see each other but it’s sporadic and often accompanied by children (so hectic).

Well, she got a new position, which is such a good fit for her, so we’re all quite happy while sad that she’s leaving us.  Aside from the professional, I knew she was hoping this would be the change she needed in her personal life; sometimes you just need a fresh start to turn things around (or so the thinking goes).  She starts in the spring semester, so you can imagine how stressful this semester has been as she wrapped up everything on one campus and started transitioning to a new campus.  Added to this, her husband has been less than helpful and borderline abusive in his reactions to her and everything about the move.

I knew things weren’t good; we had a few opportunities to talk this semester but it’s was too often in passing.  And I was busy.  And she was busy.  And he made it difficult to have any contact with her.  And then, today, she called me in a complete meltdown.  We met this morning at a local coffeeshop and she put her head on the table and sobbed for 10 minutes.  And I realized what a crap friend I’ve been this semester as she’s been dealing with way more than anyone should without any support.

So, tonight, I went over to her house and helped her get ready to leave tomorrow morning (the asshole has already gone ahead, which is a good thing). In a crisis, I am your woman (again, in my own life, not so much).  We went room by room, with me asking what needed to go and what could stay; I would pack while she would sift through things; she would organize while I loaded things into the car.  In three hours, we had things organized in the house, the car packed to the brim, the counters cleaned, the trash taken out – and were sitting on the sofa with a beer – and I don’t even drink beer; it was that kind of day.

I don’t feel good about this.  I’m glad I could help her, and I’m glad we had the hours tonight to be together and say goodbye.  But I should have been helping her this entire semester, not here at the last minute.  Sigh.

I am officially stupid

I just sat and stared at the following equation for about five minutes: 210.51 – 94.50.  For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out what to do with that zero…

Not only am I stupid, I think I’m going blind.  I’ve been staring at the computer screen way too much, I know, but now I’m having trouble reading road signs.  I just had my contact prescription checked!  I hate to go back but I don’t like this slightly fuzzy view of the world around me.

Boy, is it the end of the semester…

yes, it is different

I’m so very, very tired.  I’m fighting a cold; it’s in my chest and I’m starting to cough.  It was sheer force of will that it didn’t arrive earlier in the week – but there was NO WAY I was going to be sick when The Boy visited.  It’s the end of the semester, so I don’t have much in the way of defenses left.

And there’s just so much to do.  I am so overwhelmed right now that I’m almost immobilized.  Finishing up grading is only part of the load.  With my new position in my professional organization, I’ve picked up a lot of responsibilities, and the one looming is figuring out a response to the recent federal regulations of teacher education.  I’m now helping to write my college’s response, too.  The work is the same but it’s still more work on top of the other things I have to do.

But I’m still smiling.  Because he is so hot!  :)

Someone commented that I never talked about this kind of passion with SG, and that got me thinking.  And I realized something: I’ve never had this level of passion with any guy. Hmmm, that’s telling, isn’t it?

I’ve always fallen for nice, intelligent guys; we had a few interests in common, we could talk easily, we enjoyed each other’s company.  I’m not saying there wasn’t physical interest because there certainly was (at least in the beginning).  SG and I started off pretty well, actually, but it quickly cooled to pretty nice.  I wanted to be with my gentleman – in every sense of the word – but that was never the driving factor in the relationship; the physical side was clearly linked to me falling for their personalities and companionship.

Oh, is this different.

It’s not a clear relationship, for one thing.  We aren’t dating; we aren’t together; we aren’t any combination of words that indicates a couple.  We enjoy each other’s company quite a lot but that isn’t the driving force here.

I am drawn to him, pure and simple, and there is an attraction there that I’ve never had before.  He is a beautiful man (trust me) that just pulls me in.  I have always appreciated a good looking guy but this is much more than appreciation. The sexual chemistry is freaking amazing; I swear, we crackle when we’re together.

This is new for me, and I am thoroughly enjoying it!  Sure, I had fun when I was younger (not so much in the last ten years….) but I didn’t know what I was doing – nor did the guys I was with, I might add.  Being older, wiser, happier with myself: those things make it easier to be with someone – and I definitely want to be with The Boy!

A nice piece of all this that surely contributes is that we know each other – not the details, of course, but we’ve been friends for almost nine years.  We’ve had some of the longest conversations I’ve ever had with anyone, so we’ve had opportunities to get to know each other.  That makes things comfortable between us, and that is exceedingly nice; there’s no need to get past the general getting to know you because we already do.

So, yes, this is fun, and this is nice, and this is passionate.  It’s also new to me, so I’m sort of figuring out how this all works as I go.  I think I’m going to enjoy the figuring.

well!

So, it is rather out of character for me to wake up beside a hot guy but I must admit that I liked it very much…

The Boy arrived around 8:30 last night; he had about a two hour drive and got a later start than he’d hoped (which extended my freaking out time but did give me a chance to finish some work).  I had dinner ready, so after welcoming hugs, we sat down to eat – and talk, which comes easily to us.  He helped me clear the table and we moved to the sofa with our after dinner drinks.  (I love that he’s a whiskey drinker, by the way; I am, too, so that’s pleasant but there’s something about a man who drinks whiskey…) He stretched out, I sat down beside him and we continued to talk.

As if I needed any more convincing, that sealed the deal.  Any guy who can just be with the girl when the chemistry is crackling: sigh.  We talked, my well-chosen music played, we talked some more.  At one point, we were both standing up and I asked if he needed anything before I sat back down: “A hug” Have I mentioned that his hugs are wonderful?  He just envelops me.  I’m not a small woman but I am with him: 6’3″ and solid, broad-shouldered muscle.

One thing led to another (ahem).  And I shall share the best quote of the night: “We don’t have to stand up, you know.  Would you like to go in there” – nods to bedroom – “or over there” – nods to sofa – “or should I just put you on the floor?”  Reader, I chose the first option.

It is a wonderful thing to feel wanted.  It is also wonderful to be comfortable with the person who wants you.  We’ve known each other so long and we get along so well, it really wasn’t awkward or strange; there was some laughter and, really, it was just wonderful.  As was falling asleep.  He didn’t toss and turn and thrash; he just put his arm around me and fell asleep.  And he didn’t let go through what little sleep we got.

And today was perfectly normal (well, there was some extracurricular kissing but, otherwise, normal). We went to campus; he did some guest lecturing in my two classes; the kids loved being able to ask a real teacher questions about teaching.  We were able to grab a quick lunch in between classes and talk shop; it’s nice to talk to someone who shares my content and my profession.  He may not be a professor but he’s a teacher, so we can talk companionably about those elements.

He stayed here longer than he should have, given the long drive back, but we were comfortable on the sofa: him stretched out on the chaise, me tucked under his (very well-muscled) arm, just talking about whatever.  Then he was off and we hope that the opportunity will present itself to do this again sometime soon.

I am giddily happy.  I ran over to my friend’s house right after he left – because this is the reason we have girlfriends!  She handed me a glass of Bailey’s when I walked in the door and we laughed for a few hours – her, mostly because she was laughing at me.  I just keep saying, “He is so HOT!” – which is quite true and something I delight in thinking about – and then giggling uncontrollably.  But he’s also a sweetheart whose company I truly enjoy.  But, yeah, he’s hot.

So out of character for me but so very fun.  Because he is freaking hot.

admittedly, a little excited

Well.

The house is clean and fairly well-ordered.  All ingredients for the boeuf bourguignon were prepared last night and await their transfer to the slow cooker.  The playlist features a nice mix of good music*.  The Christmas tree looks festive.

I need to take a shower and get myself off to campus for an afternoon of meetings.  In between soothing nervous students (ah, final projects), I have a stack of papers to grade and a rebuttal paper to write. That should keep me occupied until this evening.

Ridiculously nervous. But in a good way.

*The Boy is a music lover and, luckily, he has good taste.  I’ve got selections from The New Basement Tapes, Frank Turner, The Gaslight Anthem, Augustana and The Avett Brothers cued up, with a little John Mayer, Hozier, The Head and The Heart, Sam Smith and REM for variety.