Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Katie's day off

I am lonely. Deeply and fully aware of the fact that I’m not in love and have little hope of being so in the near future, it has become a physical ache of late.

“I’m sad,” I confided to Friend as we waited for the bus yesterday morning. I had joined her when she took the prettiest of her cats to the vet, though I didn’t think she’d hear bad news. And I slept better with her here after finding graffiti on my neighbor’s house. I’m grateful for her - I love her dearly and enjoy spending time with her - but it’s not the same as having a man in my life.

“Greeter called from church and left a message on my phone,” she told me. “She thanked us for coming and said to let us know if we had any questions about joining.”

“Us? We?” I asked. “We’re not together. I’d think I’d be in a much better mood of late if I was having sex, and I’m decided unhappy a lot of the time.” She laughed and nodded and we headed off to work. But that’s the deal - I sigh when I drift off to sleep then wake hours later, all alone. I want to go to dinner with someone and kiss him goodnight. I want to pick up the phone and answer it eagerly when his name appears. I want to giggle at lame jokes and listen with fascination to stories that might otherwise be boring and blush when I realize he noticed me staring at his mouth. I miss being infatuated and distracted and all giddy because there’s this guy.

Yet I’m doing nothing to find him and I don’t really want a guy - I want the guy - and blah, blah, blah.

I had dinner last night with Steve and his longtime girlfriend. I ate a rather elaborate meal (spinach mint salad with pine nuts and feta? roasted butternut squash with mango and red onion? homemade rubs for the fish? Wow.) that Steve pulled off quite beautifully, remarked with concern of how thin his adopted dog is and watched his girlfriend of five years talk and finish his stories and help with the meal and the dog. So I was jealous - not because I want Steve, but because I so desperately wished someone was with me. To touch my hand before asking me to pass the spinach mint salad with toasted pine nuts and crumbled feta. To provide some detail of a story that I didn't remember. To take me home because I don't particularly enjoy driving in the dark. And it was late because they eat far later than I would and I’d stayed on campus too long and was moody and out of sorts, though I worked hard to be a delightful guest.

I decided even before my overly long and not so productive day yesterday to stay home today. There was nothing going on at work and I decided I could read and sleep and hang out with my puppy. So I woke early - alone, of course, and sighed over the fact - and shuffled down the hall for coffee and blog reading a bit of news. I soon yawned and shuffled down the hall to take a shower. They relax me so I decided to go back to bed and woke a couple hours later.

I was a bit hungry, so I put a loaf of take and bake bread in the oven and enjoyed the gentle rain that sprinkled the gray day with moisture. I breathed in the scent of baking bread and went to take a golden loaf out of the oven, breaking off a steaming section to nibble when I couldn’t think of anything I wanted to put on it. My search of the fridge did reveal the cookie dough I’d saved from Sunday’s baking, so I took out trays and began to bake for tomorrow’s group meeting. It was lovely and relaxing to spoon dough on the silver trays I got for Christmas. To set my timer and breathe in the new, sweeter smell. Then to rescue them from the hot oven and transfer them to cool on the table - all pretty and delicious.

After I finished, I selected three small cookies with the most chocolate chips and poured a glass of milk. I enjoyed my treat and decided to do some work after I called the insurance company about my roof. After couple hours of productivity passed pleasantly, and I selected a book and settled under a blanket on the couch to read. When I grew sleepy again, I napped. When I was done resting, I got back up to find a television show to watch. I luxuriated in the freedom of not having to be at work. Or relaxing and spending a day doing only what appealed. It was nice. I do feel better. Ready to tackle work again tomorrow and not quite as moody and unhappy as I’ve been.

But the ache persists. And I wish it would go away. My life isn’t bad. I’m really quite blessed. I don’t want to be hurt again and falling in love never seems to go my way in the end.

I’m still lonely.

8 comments:

JustMe said...

oh katie, i know exactly what you mean. i know that nothing anybody says helps in this situation, so i'll just say that, i feel you.

la rebelde said...

i feel you too. i've had many a day just like the one you described. it's a sucky sucky feeling.

Amelie said...

Ouch. I know this feeling, and I hope that someday you will find a man to relieve it. I'm so very glad I did, and I'm sorry if saying this makes you hurt more.

Vaguely Worried said...

Katie: came across your blog just surfing around and was fascinated. My God, you are prolific! And honest. And clear. And quite entertaining.

My very best wishes. Don't give up on the guy thing. Life is so awkward, you just never know. Best not to make it a crusade, in my experience, because you have absolutely no control over the results. You seem goal-oriented --identifying, targeting and pursuing 'the guy' could be an exercise in frustration (not to mention, potentially, humiliation, burn-out and depression). You seem too fabulous to be alone. Relax. s*** happens, and most of the time it's good.

Anyway, keep writing, please.

Vaguely Worried

Wayfarer Scientista said...

ah katie, I'm with you there girl, I'm with you...hopefully the pup helps some.

Psycgirl said...

Hi Katie - have you ever thought about trying online dating? I know lots of people in grad school/academia who have met this way, because our lifestyles don't lend to meeting lots of new people. That's actually how I met Husband. I found that it was easy to "weed" out the people who didn't have the characteristics I was looking for and find someone who was suited to me. Most of my friends who have tried it have actually ended up staying with the first date they went on! In fact, one of them got married in the summer.

post-doc said...

JustMe and La Rebelde-
Thank you - it's nice not to feel alone.

Amelie-
It doesn't make me hurt more. I'm very glad you found relief for those feelings and though there was a time I might have begrudged people those relationships, I don't now. It's good to be in love - I'm glad you are and wish I was.

Vaguely Worried-
You're sweet - thank you. And I agree - making it my life's mission hasn't worked out well in the past.
But it's always nice to see new people and get lovely compliments - I'm grateful. And I have you in bloglines now too - I always like new things to read.

Wayfarer-
She does help. And I'm sorry you're with me on this.

Psycgirl-
I have tried online dating, but not for a few years and not in earnest for longer than that. Something to consider, especially after I make a move to a more permanent residence.

Estrella said...

Hey there. I wish I could think of comforting words to write. I honestly hope that everything works out for you. I want you to be happy.

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