According to Plan
Go to college and create your career. Fall in love and get married. Get married and have babies. Have babies and start saving for college. Sound familiar? That is because all these plans have been told to us right from the beginning and that once you accomplish these acts you will be considered to have a successful life. Yet, more often than not these days, the plans we create or try to live by don’t go according to plan.
According to my plan, I was to move to New York, become a successful dancer, make a ton of friends and fall in love. So far, I’ve only managed to accomplish moving to New York and making a ton of friends. Doesn’t mean the rest won’t ever happen but we all need to be realistic from time to time.
Right at the beginning of last week, my entire week had all been planned out. I had something going on almost every single night and the end of the week something rather big was going to happen. I was going to meet Mr. D.’s mom! She was going to be arriving into the city on Wednesday afternoon and leaving on Saturday. Since it was a short visit, Mr. D. suggested that maybe Friday after work or that evening would be a nice time to meet his mother. It would mark the first time that I’ve ever met anyone’s parents before where I had a romantic connection with. I’ve met my friends’ parents before but this situation was brand new to me. So, for the entire week, I was a ball of nerves. What was I going to say? What was I going to do? How was I going to act? And what was I going to wear?
On Tuesday evening, I met up with a friend on the Upper West Side for dinner at, Thai Market. Over dinner, I updated him on my plans on how I was going to handle my next steps with Mr. D. While he humored me, I knew that he thinks I’m crazy. My plan was to meet the mother, hopefully she would like me and then once she told her son how great I was, another layer would be removed from Mr. D.’s way of thinking about our relationship. I left our dinner feeling rather confident about my plan of action.
The next day while I at work, I was offered the chance to work on a new business pitch. I immediately jumped at the opportunity for not all employees are asked at our agency to participate. As soon as I accepted, I got an email on who would be on the team for this pitch. Turns out that Mr. D. is also on this pitch and we would be working together once again. The universe sure has one hell of a sense of humor. After work that day, I was set to see a movie with another coworker of mine but I ended up working later than I thought and so he suggested we just meet at a bar that is located right by our office.
I arrived at the bar and my coworker was already there waiting for me. We began updating each other on work, the office gossip and finally he brought up the topic of Mr. D. It seems like everyone not only has an opinion on what my plans should be for him but also that everyone in the office has taken notice as to how he interacts with me. My coworker said that I hide it much better than Mr. D. does. After a few beers, we both decided that we needed to get home. That evening, I went home and sent Mr. D. a text message asking if his mom arrived alright and he told me that she had and that he was having a nice time with her.
It was Thursday already and the week was flying by rather quickly, mainly because work had been so hectic and my social calendar was jam packed. However, everything for the week was going according to plan. My work life was starting to look good, interaction with Mr. D. was at an all-time high and I was spending time with friends I don’t get to see that often. After work on Thursday, I met up with Feathers, his husband and my girlfriend in Chelsea. We were having dinner at, Flight 151, and after dinner we were going to head up to Time Square to see the Broadway show, The Color Purple. It turns out that, that same evening I would be seeing a Broadway show that Mr. D. was taking his mom to see, Beautiful, on Broadway. The show was amazing, all of us laughed and cried and it was truly one of my better experiences on Broadway. After the show, we all hugged goodbye and they wished me luck on meeting Mr. D.’s mom. I got home, took a shower and got into bed and right before I was drifting off to sleep, I got a text from Mr. D. telling me that his mom had a wonderful experience and that it was great watching her enjoy herself so much at the show. I thought it was rather nice that he thought of me to text about his experience with his mother. Everything was going according to plan.
Finally, the day had arrived, the day I would be meeting his mom. Mr. D. is notorious for being one of the worse planners. He can’t plan anything and is very last minute and doesn’t think about all that goes into bringing people together. So, all day during work I was a ball of nerves, I even wore khaki pants (something I never do) just in case the plan was to meet her after work and I didn’t have time to go home and change into something preppy. Mr. D. left the office around 3 p.m. that day to take his mom to a museum and he wasn’t sure what the plans were going to be after that. He told me that he would keep me posted for a right time for me to drop by. Then at around 6:30, I get a text from him and it said, “Not sure my dear. Might be a low key night for mom.” I knew what that meant by knowing how Mr. D. communicates and that meant that she is tired and that this meeting is not going to happen. At first, I was disappointed but then I stopped being selfish and thought about his mom. She is 70 years old, she hasn’t been to the city since the 1970’s and she was up late the night before with the Broadway show and she really wanted to spend time with her son. Not to mention that Mr. D. and I still don’t know what the hell we are doing and why get this innocent woman involved in our mess. I just told him, “Ok.” I thought that would be the last I would hear from him that night but it turns out my plans were now no longer going according to plan.
He sent me a text later on that night after he took his mom back to her hotel, which ironically enough, she was staying at a hotel only a few blocks away from my apartment. His text asked me where I was and I told him that I was at home. He said that he was nearby and asked to see me. I told him to come over. It was marking the first time that he was going to be in my apartment. I was nervous, excited and thought that since my roommate was gone that finally something was going to happen between us. He arrives, I give him the five second tour of my tiny apartment and we sit on the couch. He tells me that his mom was exhausted after the museum and dinner. He also apologized a few times for the meeting not happening and I told him that it was fine. He said that he needed to be back in my area the next morning to help his mom checkout of her hotel, take her to brunch and then to Penn Station where she would get on the bus to head back home. He said, “Let’s go outside and take a walk before I have to head home.” Once again, so much for my plan. As we walked down Ninth Avenue, he realized just how gay my neighborhood was and even laughed at how much activity was going on in just a few blocks into our walk. When we got to the corner of 49th and Ninth Avenue, I told him that his subway was just two more avenues heading east. Since he always walks me to the subway when we hangout, I decided to return the favor. Along the walk, he said, “Hey…my buddies and I are planning on hanging out tomorrow. You should come and meet some of the others that you haven’t met already.” I knew I had plans with another friend that evening but figured I could double book and make it all happen. So, I graciously accepted his invitation and hugged him goodbye. I told him to let me know he got home alright. Right before I was to fall asleep I got a message from that said, “All is good kiddo. See you soon!”
I woke up Saturday feeling alive by the time 10 a.m. rolled around; I had already cleaned the apartment and did my laundry. I had plans to meet my friend at 11:30 a.m. on his corner to walk over the Village in order to help him buy some rather personal items for a party that was coming up. We had a great time shopping for him and afterwards he said to me, “You know, I should be telling you to stay away from him and I don’t want to see you get hurt but he does seem to make you happy.” I thank him for his words, walked him back to his apartment and kept walking all the way home.
Later on that day, I was taking a much needed nap when I got a text message from Mr. D. saying that he is still working on his friends, trying to figure out the game plan and that he would keep me posted. I then sent a message to my friend that I was meeting that night about the change in plans. He was really generous with me and said for me to go and we would catch-up later on. Several back and forth messages with Mr. D. later and finally he said for me to come over to his place and we would go from there. I grabbed the gift bag I had gotten for him. The gift bag was to celebrate his six months of being sober. I was so proud of him and all that he had accomplished with that intense journey and in the bag was a card, a diet coke and peanut M&M’s (our favorite stuff we eat when we go to the movies). When I arrived at his apartment and gave him his bag, he gave me a big hug and thanked me for everything. Then I asked where we are meeting the boys and he said, “Those losers bailed on me and so it’s just you and I tonight. Let’s get you good and drunk.” Once again, my plans were not going accordingly.
We got our jackets and headed out into Brooklyn. We finally found a bar that he and I had been to a few times last year. As we sat at the bar, he with his diet coke and me with my beer and a shot of Jack Daniels, we began talking about our upcoming trip to Boston. We were figuring out dates and where we were going to stay. It was fun and I was getting excited about our plans. After a few drinks we walked over to another bar. Once again, we were sitting at the bar and laughing and having a wonderful time. Finally, he brought up the topic of dating. He said, “Dating is difficult.” It was either the booze or my lack of patience but I looked at him and said, “Dating is difficult for you because you are not dating me.” He shifted himself on his seat, smiled and then laughed and said, “I am straight.” I thought for sure that his response was going to either make my temper flare or I was going to get emotional and instead I already had my response locked and loaded. It was as if I had this response prepared this entire time of us hanging out. I shifted myself to look him straight in the eye and said, “I’ve never asked you for anything but would you please go see a therapist if I gave you a name and number for one because you really need it.” He didn’t seem to off put by me suggesting that and he said that he would and that he thinks he could benefit from it. He then said, “You aren’t drunk enough. Let’s go to another bar and fix that.” So, we walked to the bar and we began talking about other things other than the pink elephant in the room. At the last bar, we both were getting tired. I was drunk and he was sober but caffeinated by all the diet cokes he had consumed in the last several hours.
After we settled the bill at the last bar and we were walking, I realized I needed to use the restroom. He said that I should go back to his apartment. Once again, I thought this plan would be for me to use the restroom at his place, he would see how drunk I was and let me sleep over at his place and I would leave the next day. I use his restroom and when I get out of his bathroom he is standing there with his coat still on and suggested that he walk me to the subway to make sure I got home alright. That was it. I had no more plans left in me. I told him that it wasn’t necessary for him to walk me and he insisted. When I finally got home after a longer than normal commute there was a text from him asking me if I got home ok, I told him yes and that was it.
Yesterday I didn’t hear from him and I didn’t reach out to him either. I didn’t reach out because I’m not sure what’s left to say or what’s left to do. Part of me knows that this needs to come to an end and part of me knows that even if he gets the therapy that he needs that doesn’t mean it’s going to work out between us. I do know I have given everything I possibly can and at times, so has he. We have now reached the point where there is nowhere else to go. I know this and I know that he knows this but he would never address it the way that I have to.
I don’t know my next plan just yet; I do know that life never goes accordingly. I know that life can be pretty random and that we must be prepared at what is thrown at us. Planning for our future is a smart thing to do but I guess we just all must learn that life rarely goes according to plan.
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