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3:42 p.m. - February 18, 2003
Much calmer II
A good friend from college tracked me down on the internet - not that difficult to do, I presume and worry - and she's moved back to Washington to teach ESL with her husband. Husband? Last time I talked to her, she was moving to Turkey with her girlfriend-life partner but that was 3 years ago and if I can go curious-boyfriend-exboyfriend, then by all means she can go from radical feminist girl-lover to eating meat instead of muff.

Surprise emails are always good.

Made me think of this tendency of mine, to push away people and not give chances, to view with skepticism those who would approach me, to suspect motives. When did this manifest in earnest? It may surprise you but in college I had a great circle of friends, honors program English and Philosophy majors, teachers and law students, even the stray urban planner who became one of my closest buddies. But over the years they've fallen away - that, or I've pried their fingers off me - without malice or intent but it just happens. My ex-therapist said once that it's typical and I don't recall much of what she said afterward, my hearing becoming selective after she uttered typical. But the point is, I want people again and I struggle to remember how to let people in - or at least beyond the outer reaches - and experience camaraderie. Like Lara - when she went off to Prague and I to California, we swore fealty and visits and now we're strangers, I'm fill-in-the-blank and she's straight. I'd like to maintain for a while and see what that's like.

And there are people I'm interested in; unfortunately, they're all online, something that distresses me. So the logical step is to meet in vivo, right? (Don't worry, I'm not planning any immediate visits.) I'd like to email Brownboy but I'm apprehensive; I'd like to chat with Floodtide because I know most but not all of his literary references and he seems like fun; I'd like to meet Mal and make sure she's genuine; Lori, simply because I want to know her; Twids, but not for a while - that I'm-a-former-model thing scares me. OK, so not very many people and it's odd to me, and reassuring, how much I rather enjoy chatting with people online - like James - but I'm always thinking in the back of my mind, they're being polite. The suspicion thing. One day.

All this to say that I went to my secret place and sat in the sun with the wildflowers blooming all around and it's better to confront than run. But I think my approach was flawed from the onset - I can't avoid and confront simultaneously.

I'm sad about last night, the way Spec became upset and left and I'm trying to tell myself that's how he handles things, the same way I do - by leaving. And I feel more sadness because I would have liked him to stay with me for the duration but I scared myself pretty badly, and I suspect I scared him, too. And this is the way it ends, me with strained vocal cords that hurt like a bitch and a good view from the hills.


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