When It Rains, It Pours
With all our theories, hypothesis, propositions and the plethora of self-help books that is available to us. We still can’t seem to answer the age old question of, “When does life get better?” We can’t figure out that when one bad thing happens in our lives that several other misfortunes must occur. It will forever be a mystery to us all, so maybe we should all embrace that in life, when it rains, it pours.
Last Monday, it didn’t start off in my normal fashion. Instead of being the first one in the office, I was lying in my bed and not going to work. I didn’t want to leave my apartment and face my reality. That reality being that I just canceled all my plans with my office crush that previous Saturday when he decided to tell me via text that he was going on a date with a woman. I was still in the midst of processing all that had happened over the past eight months between us and how it was officially over. My office crush was still left in the dark because my last message to him was me telling him I would explain everything later on. And as that Monday had presented itself, I decided to hide from him, my job and my reality and not deal with it. I wasn’t ready yet and frankly, I was too sad to even put my words together to let him know that I was ending everything between us. I spent the entire day inside my apartment, barely responding to the messages I was receiving and naturally, I didn’t hear from my office crush.
On Tuesday, I knew I couldn’t take another day off from work nor did I want my office crush to have such a hold over how I conducted myself at work. So, I got up, pulled myself together and arrived at the office. After going through all of my work emails from the day before, I decided to log onto Facebook. The first thing I noticed when I logged on was several postings of an old friend and former colleague with messages relating to him that he had suddenly passed away. Seeing that it’s the internet, I wasn’t sure if it was real or not so I contacted a few other friends that we had in common and they confirmed to me that he had indeed passed away in a very dramatic way. I sat there stunned and I didn’t want to react in front of other coworkers so I took myself to the bathroom and splashed cold water on my face. As I looked at myself in the mirror, I realized how terrible I had looked. With no real appetite and not getting an proper rest; I told myself that I needed to pull myself together and focus on work because there was nothing else I could do at this point for my friend or for my office crush.
I was barely into the work day, when I noticed my cell phone ringing and I decided to answer the call. When I answered the call it was from a collection agency asking me to confirm who I was. When I confirmed who I was, they asked me to then confirm my current employer’s address and when I did they informed me that they will be arriving at my place of employment the next business day to serve me papers for a credit card company is suing me for not making any payments. It was there that I realized that once again, my identity theft was not over. It was back to haunt me and just when I thought I was getting my financial life back together after last year’s painful struggle with the identity theft, this person was back again. I told them everything about the identity theft and that kept them from arriving at my place of employment. My life was certainly raining down on me. I thought for sure that I was going to have a nervous breakdown and to top it all off, my client was in the office that day and I had to make sure that I was presentable in every aspect of the day. I was in and out of meetings with my client; I was dealing with not running into my office crush, processing the loss of a friend and now my identity theft. I was starting to get really nervous for my mental state and yet no one in the office knew what I was going through. I just kept on smiling and pushing forward.
After work that day, I knew myself well enough to not run to a bar and drink the pain away for that would cause more damage. I went to the gym instead and stayed there for three hours. When I got home, I pulled my phone out and there was a message from my office crush. It had been three full days since we last communicated and all he asked was “Are you okay?” I knew he was asking me this question because I still hadn’t told him why I canceled all our plans or why I was angry with him. I didn’t respond to his text message and I put my phone away for the rest of the night. What I needed to do was cry or scream or do any sort of release from all that I was going through but my mind and body wouldn’t allow me to do so. Instead, I felt like I needed to keep strong for myself and the others around me.
The next day, I barely had the energy to make it to work but I knew I had to be there for meetings along with the fact that I had plans after work with someone that I dated earlier this year but we remained friends. It was funny timing that we reconnected but I knew I couldn’t stay another night in my apartment feeling the way I was feeling.
We met that evening at a cute wine bar down in the West Village and we started updating each other on our lives. He was telling me about his great new job, all the traveling he had done this year and how he’s starting to look for an apartment to buy. As I was doing my best to smile, listen and celebrate all his success; I couldn’t help but think if this man sitting across from me only knew what I had been through in the past 48 hours, he would be in shock. Instead, whenever he asked me a question about my life; I told him how great and fabulous everything was.
After the wine bar, we went to this lesbian bar called, The Cubbyhole. It was an interesting choice of venue for us to go to but while we were there, we ran into a woman that we actually both knew but in different capacities. After we finished our only beer there, we decided to go to a gay bar called, Rockbar. It was there that I think we both were feeling kind of buzzed and up to this point, I had been avoiding alcohol due to my depression. The bar was so crazy because it was “Goth” night and there were all these performers on stage in Goth attire and it was simply not my scene. We left that place and went to one more bar and there my friend said, “Every single time I hang out with you, something crazy always happens. This stuff only happens when I’m with you.” He was referring to how each place we went to that night something “odd” was occurring. We had a good laugh and we hugged goodbye and I hailed a cab to take me back to my apartment. While it was a nice distraction to hang out with someone and not deal with all my problems; I knew they would all be there the next day for me to face.
Thursday morning and I still wasn’t feeling like myself. I knew it had only been a few days since everything had fallen apart but I guess I was being optimistic to think that everything was going to somehow change and everything was going to be right with the world again. It turns out that I was wrong. Once again, not only was my life raining but it was pouring.
I logged onto my computer and began writing when I got an instant message from my office crush that said, “Are you ever going to tell me what is going on? Or are we just going to remain in radio silence?” I didn’t respond right away because my coffee hadn’t even started to run through my veins and he was clearly in attack mode. He continued for a few more minutes with him telling me how he can’t get over how I’m behaving. How I’m not a good friend because of the silent treatment I had given him. The last point he made to me was how there are something’s that he can’t help but that he was very honest with me right from the beginning. He was referring to how he claimed to be straight and that he told me this right from the beginning. I walked away from my computer for a second and when I returned I said, “I will respond to you today.” He responded back with some more bitter responses but he finally left me alone.
My time was up and I needed to address him once and for all. I decided to email him at his personal email address and began to write my email to him otherwise known as the “goodbye letter”. I didn’t apologize for my disappearing act. I told him how I felt right from the beginning. I told him that not only did I love him but that I was deeply saddened that it’s ended. I told him that what upsets me the most is that he still wasn’t addressing or taking responsibility for his actions or his words. How he can sit there and reverse this situation by telling me I’m not a good friend when he knew good and well how I felt about him. I went on to say that the only reason why I had any of these feelings toward him was not because I made this up in my mind but because he led me on to believe these things by his actions and his words. I closed it up with wishing him, his family and friends well. I hit send and wasn’t sure if/when he would ever respond and an hour later I got an instant message from him that said three words:
“Thanks for that.”
I wasn’t shocked by his reaction at all. He is the king of avoidance and why would he ever take responsibility in this messy situation.
After work, a coworker forced me to go across the street for a beer and to chat for he knew there was something wrong with me. One beer led to two but as soon as I ordered my second beer, my office crush showed up with three other coworkers. This man isn’t even drinking anymore and nor does he even know these coworkers that I was with. How did he end up showing up at this particular bar? We made eye contact and the look was gave each other was the look of sadness. I threw a ten dollar bill on the table and I ran out the door. That was that. I was done and I hope that I never hear from my office crush again. After all that we had been through and you want your last words to me to be, “Thanks for that.” It broke my heart in a way that I wasn’t anticipating. Was I disappointed in how this ended? Of course and I knew that this situation would only go two ways and with my luck…I just knew that this would never work out in my favor. The question than remains, “Than why did I even entertain getting to know this man?” and the answer is simple: Because when you connect with someone…which is rare. You fight for it.
I didn’t go to work on Friday and instead, I ran as many errands as I possibly could before meeting my friend, Feathers and his husband in Chelsea to drive out to their country house in Pennsylvania. I didn’t even pack my normal clothes that I usually do, instead I packed two pair of sweats and that was going all that I was going to wear for the entire time I was there. We arrived at their country house and the first thing I did was run upstairs to my room, changed into my sweats and came back downstairs and we did everything we could to keep my mind busy. Thankfully, they kept me busy throughout the weekend with baking, cleaning and taking a walk around their property. I also somehow managed to get some proper rest. We left the country house yesterday and when I got back to the city; I felt like my batteries were slightly recharged. I’m still not fully myself and it will take time. I have to understand and take some responsibility in the fact that I now have to see my office crush every single day and do my best to avoid running into him and at the same time learn to get over him. I said goodbye to my friend that had passed away over the weekend while I was out in the country and when I had some private time to myself and in regards to my identity theft; I’ve decided it’s time to get a lawyer involved.
So, there you have it. When it rains, it pours. I guess the best we can do when life begins to pour down on us, is to make sure that we protect ourselves, knowing that the rain will eventually stop and when it does; it’s our jobs to clean up the mess.
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