Karma, That Snake in the Grass

It’s been quite a while since I updated. I have a lot to cover and I don’t have the energy to go into every detail so I’ll just summarize. This is the back of the book version and I’ll do what I can to cover it all. It’s not, after all – for you – it’s for me.

Last I checked in, Carrie and I had talked. I left with some dissatisfaction as to her reasoning, but in general I think it went as well as I could have hoped. It felt like a conversation I wish we had a year ago.

We acknowledged that we each had hurt the other. That we still cared, and that things were delicate and difficult.

After that I let things lie for a while. My move was made, my effort spent. I tried very hard to open a crack in the walls. I think I succeeded.

After that things moved very quickly. The job came through in San Mateo. Suddenly I was gone, out working. A very exciting, fast paced job. Paying more almost double what I’d made anywhere else. I was scared, I was sleeping on friends couches and hunting madly for an apartment. I didn’t have time to breathe or consider, everything felt urgent.

In light of all that, work was almost easy. It was Рshow up on time Рwork your ass off and try your best, then go back to surviving.  I spent a lot of late nights studying the new job, training, watching tv shows to relax and breathe. Not much happened but work for a month.

Finally I got an apartment, I got a place. I confess I had started to ignore Bonni a bit during all this. I was gone 5 out of 7 days and worried constantly. We hung out on the weekends and I could tell she wasn’t too thrilled about me suddenly being out of reach and moving away. I was too caught up in my own life.

During this time, Matlock was in Thailand and was gone for a month. He came back with stars in his eyes and only had time for Vanessa again. I envy his wholehearted passion sometimes, but he’s also a bit obsessive and a doormat for women. Still he’s happy and I’ve left him to that consumption. I spent my only time in town with my friend Joe, and Bonni.

Joe and Bonni had ended up messing around about a month ago. Because Bonni and I have a very loosely formed, open relationship. It wasn’t the kind of thing I could get angry about in good conscience. But they both felt guilty, knew I might not like it and told me about it. I talked with each of them and told them I wasn’t really comfortable with the whole thing. I had never given Bonni any guidelines other than be safe, and be honest. Joe I wasn’t too worried about, he came clean after all, and they didn’t sleep together. I told them both it made me uncomfortable, that it was too close to my previous relationship, it ended with losing a friend who was acting selfishly and I didn’t want to risk anything like that again.

It seemed we were all on the same page. Then a month later, in the midst of moving and a tornado that is my life. I get a text from Bonni. Confessing that her and Joe had slept together. They both knew it was fucked up. They both knew it wasn’t okay. I was pissed. I deleted them both from facebook, I told them not to talk to me and I went into hiding.

I stayed in Hayward for 2 weeks I couldn’t bring myself to talk to either of them. They both tried to explain and apologize. But I wasn’t having it. After a while I cooled down. I thought it through and I talked with both of them asking why they had done what they had done. Obviously I had to filter through the bullshit but what I came away with is this.

Joe: I knew it would hurt you, I just didn’t think it would hurt you THAT much.

Bonni: I was lonely, sad and being self-destructive.

Bonni, honestly I could understand. I’ve acted that way too. Joe’s reasoning just felt wrong, extra shitty. I told Joe to leave me alone for an indefinite amount of time. You could tell he felt bad but not so much that he was dying for my forgiveness or anything.

Bonni was a wreck, she desperately wanted to fix things. I couldn’t decide how I felt. I waited another week and then I agreed to have lunch with her. I told her that I wanted to trust her but she would need to earn it. The only way I could think to earn it was to make some changes. I asked her to go to therapy and she agreed, and I told her for now, our relationship is not open. At least not on her end. She’s been able to trust me after all, it’s the other way around that is the problem. I don’t really want to complicate this by dating more but I don’t know what I want to do really.

My heart went out to her. Here was my chance to be better than Carrie. To have someone I care about, make a mistake, feel genuinely bad about it, make amends and make effort to fix it. It’s everything I WISHED I had as an opportunity a year ago.

I wish, so deep in my heart, that Carrie had given me a chance. Had let me show her I can change, be better, make the effort I’d failed to make before. Even when she disappeared I did it all anyway. Proving it could be done, proving I was doing it for me.

When I saw this plopped before me. I decided to at least try. To not just walk away. I knew what insanity, what hurt and agony comes from just disappearing from a relationship. So I opted to do what I wish had been done. Give her a chance.

Since then she’s been doing well, she got a better job, she’s going to start therapy, she’s doing what she should be doing. I decided a while ago that I trusted her, loved her even, but that I didn’t know what to do with that information. Our relationship is founded on being casual, friendly, fun. Not deep, or loving or committed.

I know even less now. I know I still care. I keep that close to my mind and my thoughts. I try not to torture her or to be angry with her. Just to be positive, to practice forgiveness. To be a more mature adult than I ever have before.

I miss Joe too. He was a good friend to me. I just don’t know how to handle this. Laugh it off? Never speak to him again? Give him some obscure task to perform? I don’t know so I do nothing for now.

During the week I work, I focus on doing a good job. Furnishing my apartment is fun and rewarding. I keep my place spotless and I cook in my own kitchen. I walk around naked and careless and listen to music. I read sprawled any which way and practice joy in my solitude.

On the weekends, Bonni comes over and we play the couple. We cook dinner and talk, have sex, and cuddle. On Sunday she goes back to Santa Rosa and I focus on work, on my new home, on worrying about my finances and my deadlines.

It feels like a normal life, like the kind you’d get bored reading about in any good story. It works for now I suppose. I’ve noticed that I’m way too hard on myself at times. Second guessing my decisions at every turn, wondering where to put my heart, my effort, my words, my actions.

When I can relax and just live life, it seems to go better. So I’m trying. On the weekends I have a girlfriend, of sorts. She’s in therapy, so am I. During the week I work a very intense and challenging job and I make good money.

On my weeknights, I read, I watch tv, sometimes I cry. I talk to my therapist every monday on the phone. I cook, I clean, I take on little projects as I have time. It feels surreal compared to the endless little hells I’ve been through. Even this business that hurt so badly with Joe and Bonni, after the sting. It felt like a drop in the bucket. A small stream compared to the avalanche I’ve survived. I’m still moving forward, and I feel, that I should still be proud of myself. So I will be.