Saturday, December 19, 2009

In the wake of it all...

N and I still haven't seen each other. It has been desperately difficult as he has texted me several times with things like: "I do and always have loved you more than I've ever loved anyone." At this point, though, I have to ask-- what's the point? I have been defeated. I am a very stubborn girl, but defeat is the only way to true victory sometimes.

Anyway, I've had two dates with someone new and I think there's real potential there. I'm just taking that one date at a time though and not making it too important. A lot is happening. I can't believe I almost forgot my own blog address. Maybe I'll write a little about it all, maybe not.

Liu is in town visiting and NDN & Tamika are having a holiday party tonight.


Sunday, October 11, 2009

This is...

... so frickin' hard.

Friday, October 9, 2009


We are officially over.

I have no more words.


Thursday, September 3, 2009

Autumn Arrives

I love that it's the Fall...finally! The humidity is gone this week. I am feeling pretty good. I was B12 deficient but got a shot and now I'm not. Things with Narc have been very rocky. I had an anxiety attack on Saturday. I am looking for a new sponsor in AA. Funny how all of that is going on and I still feel pretty good. My singing is keeping me in place. I bought a corset yesterday on Orchard Street. I am finally plowing ahead and working on my incompletes. Today I am wearing a cranberry colored short-sleeved sweater and I love it.

Um... that's it for now. I sort of wish I wanted to blog more. I miss it, but still can't sit to write.


Thursday, August 13, 2009

A Girl in the World

I haven't been blogging because I haven't had the time and also because I'm not in the sort of head-space right now in which I want to be thinking about myself, obsessing about my relationships or any of it. And, as I don't know how to confront a blank page without flooding it with self-obsession, I have chosen to remain silent. I do miss sharing my life with all of you out there, though, so I thought I'd drop in for a quick update.

My trip was amazing. It changed me in a way that nothing else could. I had to get out of NY. The conference went really well. I felt "a part of" the scholarly community. My paper was received with excellent reviews and I made some good contacts there. I was filled with ideas for new papers, for revising old papers, and I was suddenly motivated to be an aspect of myself that has long been dormant. I felt like an historian. I felt like me-- a me I haven't given priority to in a long, long time.

Then, there was Paris. Paris was... well-- Paris! My friends were so lovely in how they welcomed me. They are both creative, intellectual types and I met many of their friends-- dinner parties, long talks in cafes, jazz clubs. I felt like another self there as well-- a sophisticated, intellectual, independent, self-loving self. It was another me and one that I want to preserve so badly. I went on a date there with a Marlon Brando wannabe who picked me up on a motorcycle with a cigarette dangling from his lips. He was super cute-- an antiques dealer. Too bad he was also a narcissistic personality. I chose not to call him again. I want better for myself now. I am interesting enough to have a man be interested in me. He is not the only one in the room anymore. I also did way too much shopping, but felt that somehow it was also part of crafting this "self" that I allowed to emerge. I sang at a Jazz club and got rave reviews and was invited to return the next night. I sang opera there and imagined myself to be a singer in Paris. I could be. I could pick up and move there tomorrow and do just that. I am free. I am young and talented and smart and can do whatever I want.

In Scotland, I faced physical challenges. I breathed in mountain air and climbed hills past my comfort point, until my lungs burned and my legs ached. But I did it and I was thrilled that I could. It was part of my new relationship with my new body-- I am slim now (which makes it easier to climb), in shape (at least way more than I ever was) and I can enjoy that. I saw the majesty of the universe in the most phenomenal natural landscape I have ever seen. I took off my clothes and swam in ice cold mountain pools below waterfalls. I sang Tosca in the Cuillin Mountains on the Isle of Skye. I made so many new friends. I was a new self there as well.

And all the while, I was scared of losing it. What it would all mean to come back to NY, to come back to myself. The first week away, I was trying to get in touch with Narc and he mostly ignored me. It ate at me... gnawed at me. I gave away my power. Until I decided to take it back. I decided to stop caring whether he wrote and I decided not to write back to him until the very end of my trip. It was so liberating. I was so empowered. But when I got back to NY, he was paranoid. He called me repeatedly and tried to come up here and accused me of fucking other guys while I was away and being "dishonest like all women." I wasn't used to be talked to like that anymore...being called a whore, a liar, an asshole. And it struck me in a way that was shocking. He was just paranoid and scared. I can forgive him that. But I don't want to lose what I learned.

I did see him later that week. He apologized and told me how much he loves me and doesn't want to lose me. But as soon as our tie had been re-cemented, he resumed his normal ways-- ignoring my texts when he feels like it, calling me drunk, demanding I come to him, and not volunteering to come to my place or accommodate my schedule. I have been slipping back and forth between accepting it as usual and fighting it. We are sort of in a fight right now, in fact.

Last night I was out with him and several of his friends for a few hours in the evening. A friend of one of his friends was there and I ended up talking to that guy, a poet, for a long time. We had a real conversation connection-- I really liked him and respected him and felt that spark of recognition of a familiar soul. How strange that I should meet someone like that through Narc. I don't know if he'll call me. I don't know what I'll do if he does call. But part of me is angry that I am pulled to ignore this possibility because I bind myself to the sinking ship of my relationship with Narc. I want to jump board so badly now. I want to swim away and save myself. But I fear that to do so would to be to turn and watch him go down with the ship and I can't bear to do that to him.

Being away I experienced a self not defined by drinking, by Narc, by my recovery, by my family, by therapy, by friends or any of that. I was a self defined by art, by intellect, by conversation. I want to make time for that girl-- to prioritize that girl. But I don't know how to do that without abandoning the Hyde that is all about love and friendship and family and relationships-- the girl who prioritizes and makes time for everyone else but herself.

I also have been struggling a lot with AA. Aravis-- if you're reading this post, maybe you could give me some advice. I would love to write to you about it in a longer email or perhaps talk on the phone. I really respect where you are and what perspective you could offer me.

Um... well, I guess that's it for now. I don't want to get too stuck in thinking about this, like I said. I am still in love with Sesame beyond belief and have been spending a lot of time with her. She knows me and loves me too and she also knows that she has her Aunt Hyde wrapped around her little finger. She is such a gift in my life. Who knew how wonderful it could be!

Ok... hope you are all well. I do miss the blog world. This is all I have for the moment.


PS: I dyed my hair even lighter blond and chopped it into a long bob. I love it. I also had to get new glasses. I don't love that so much.

PPS: I found a pair of diamond earrings on the street. I want to get them appraised. Yay.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

To the point of exhaustion...

I haven't been on here in forever. I have had the busiest month on record-- teaching an intensive summer course (w/ a long commute), trying to write the paper for the upcoming conference, and a billion and one obligations to friends and family (including the Hammer-Alaskan wedding!) In any case, I'm leaving for a three week trip on Saturday-- to Cambridge, Paris and Scotland. I can't wait! But before I can get to the fun part, I have to get through the presentation of my paper which takes place on Monday, July 13th. Wish me luck!!! I'll be back to write more when I can. I'm giving final exams today which means in the next three days I have to get all of my grading done, put the finishing touches on my conference paper and pack. Man, oh man...

Hope you are all well out there!


Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Return of "SeatleGuy"

It's strange... I was just found on Facebook by SeattleGuy-- a guy that I was dating during the first few months of my relationship with Narc. It seems that he has been back in NY for a year and is in law school. Why does it feel like I knew him a lifetime ago?

(Here's what he wrote to me:

Let me guess, you're married? Do you have a kid? Do you still sing?

Well, I finally made it to NY, last year. Am going to law school. I just got done with my first year a couple weeks ago. There's probably a lot of things that have happened, but law school has absorbed every whit of my focus, so I hardly even know "myself" if you know what I mean. New York is cool, though.

Do you still go to the Irish bar? I forget where it is; near 50th? I hope you're doing great; you struck me years ago as a really deserving person

Nice message, I guess...

Anyway, I have a lot of work to do today, so no time for a long blog entry. Yesterday was a day of artistic creation-- I had a great voice lesson (once I got my energy going) and started my oil-painting class with StarGazer. We were working on a sort of boring still-life-- a green vase, a wine glass and some brown eggs. I want to paint Tudor style portraits of my niece.

The weather is strange here. It's chilly out, but damp and muggy at the same time. It makes me feel sleepy.

On another note, I want to paint two walls of my bedroom a bright red. But part of me is afraid that it won't feel cozy in there with such a bold color. Hmm... Guess I'll sit on that decision a while longer.

Ok...that's it for now!


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

What a drag...

...that Adam Lambert lost.

NDN, Tamika and I are all fans. Narc was rooting for Kris.

Ah, well... until next year!


Monday, May 18, 2009

And so it goes...

MAY 5th, 2009:

It's still raining here and I can feel it in my bones. This is not an easy week for me. Today I'm thinking about 5/5/5. On Thursday it is the 19th anniversary of my dad's death. And on Saturday I'll have three years sober.

A lot is happening. I feel sad right now. I suppose I should be grateful that I can feel at all. I usually walk around this work perplexedly numb to the many things that "should" make me wince with emotional pain. I had a panic attack on the subway earlier in the week. I don't feel like talking about that. But again-- a sign that there is something there for me to be "feeling" about after all. On Thursday I met Narc and his friend Ethan at Cercle Rouge. After "drinks," we all stayed up late at his place watching "The Millionaire Matchmaker." I ate from the cereal box that I leave on top of Narc's fridge. It felt kind of crappy to have a third party there-- all of a sudden the silent dynamic between me and Narc-- all that I let go unmentioned-- was screaming for an explanation. No explanation was offered to Ethan. He probably didn't care. I'm probably the only one who cared at all.

On Friday morning the three of us ate dumplings in Chinatown. Narc said if his mom were a moral person she would have aborted him. I had my favorite bubble tea for dessert. We walked West towards the Tribeca Film Festival. I left the boys over coffee and headed to the Village to meet Hammer. Hammer and I hung out at her apartment for a bit. I was supposed to meet Meema to go to the gym later, but she flaked. So, oddly enough, I ended up at home, without plans, on a Friday night. It was not a good idea. I was super-anxious.

But, at last, morning broke and Saturday came. StarGazer and I got pedicured and went shopping. And after a prolonged silence, I finally caught up with Brick on the phone. Then I came home to get ready for my "date" with TT. Somehow I had agreed to try a proper date with him. Even though, I am fairly sure we are not destined for each other, I agreed to give it a shot, having explained to him that I am sort of a roller coaster and he can take it or leave it.

We met at Swing 46-- a swing music/big band supper club on restaurant row (not that far from where MJ took me out a few weeks ago)...


MAY 18th, 2009:

I started writing that post a few weeks ago, and as I'm in a totally different head space now, I thought I'd just leave it "as is" and move on.

I was going to tell you all about the date with TT-- mediocre conversation followed by some making out in the street that was sort of okay, but ultimately left me in neutral. Right afterward, I saw Narc. When I met him at BG he was reading tarot for two drunk middle aged, but scantily clad Russian women. He was of course, quite drunk himself, and proceeded to ignore me for a good amount of time, until I dragged him home and we had fucked up psycho-sexual sex (and some tears) that went on for a few hours and left me half elated and half disturbed.

The next morning, Narc and I had brunch with his friend Steve (an event that stretched on well into the afternoon), and I had to head straight to my AA meeting from there, in the ridiculous heels and little dress that I had been wearing the night before.

Anyway... TT followed up with the typical round of phone calls and texts, which left me feeling a little uncomfortable. (Guilty, maybe? Obligated? I don't know...) I don't think I'm into him, and I've known that for a while. Why do I keep forgetting the fact? In any case, we went on a second date to see Star Trek. This time, as it was a casual movie-thing on a Thursday night, I felt even less romantic and when he kissed me in the street after, I sort of just wanted his tongue out of my throat.

I had put a "status-update" up on Facebook, that I was "seeking a Romantic encounter with a text." Perhaps it was unclear that I was referring to a literary text-- a historical document, to be precise, but TT texted me to ask if he should do anything in response to my status update. First of all, if I did mean "text message," why would he assume that it was pointed at him. When I explained to him that I was referring to a document, he apologized for being "paranoid." Paranoid? Ug. That icky feeling of obligation-- where someone wants something from me, and I don't have it to give, was creeping up on me. Not good.

But all that feels like it took place so long ago. He has texted me and called several times since then and tried to make plans with me, but I have proven to be very elusive. I am probably sending him mixed messages. I haven't heard from him in about three days now, though, so perhaps he is drawing his own conclusions.

The weekend of May 9th-10th was a busy one for me. Once past the hurtle of my dad's death-anniversary, I had to deal with the emotional implications of three years of sobriety. The day before my anniversary, Hammer and I hung out all afternoon at the Sophie Calle exhibit in Chelsea. It was amazing. Afterwards I helped Hammer and the Alaskan paint long wooden sticks that are somehow going to be crafted into a chuppa for their wedding. That night I met up with Jake and his friends to celebrate Jake's birthday. We started at a Thai restaurant in the West Village and somehow ended up at a roof party at Astor Place. I haven't been to an old school roof party like that in a long time.

I eventually got myself home by 2:30 AM, as I wanted to wake up early to make a 9:00 AM AA meeting on my anniversary. As luck would have it, however, Narc called just as I was getting home. He wanted to meet me at Cheers, but I had to avoid the place, as TT had texted me earlier in the evening that he was there. So, I told Narc to meet me at a new pub down the block. He was wasted when I arrived and we proceeded to get into a nasty fight. I tried to leave, but the rain was coming down in sheets, and I felt guilty leaving him drunk and alone in my neighborhood in the rain. So, I stood in the doorway of the pub for what seemed like forever. He thought I had left for real and called me as they were closing up. I came back in and told him I had never left.

That seemed to end our fight, but it only led into more really strange sex. I swear-- it was like the old days with me and him that week. We were up until nearly 6:00 AM and needless to say, I didn't make the AA meeting. I sort of felt like shit about that happening on my anniversary. Narc and I ate lunch at Cheers. Sunday, May 10th was his birthday but I had to be on Long Island for Mother's Day. So, I wrote him a note and folded it into his hand.

"Don't open it until midnight," I said.

My note said something cheesy and loving and I don't feel like re-writing it here.

That night I headed to Long Island where I met up with my family for dinner to celebrate (at an Armenian restaurant in Douglaston) and then headed back to my parent's place to stay over.

Narc texted me after midnight: Just read your note. I love you!!

See-- this is why I'm so crazy.

Anyway... Mother's day was great-- BigSis' first time celebrating! It helped take me out of my own head. When I got back to the city that night, I met Narc, Mike and Steve at Cowgirl in the West Village. Narc is obsessed with their corn dogs. I hadn't seen Mike since my birthday party.

"I didn't recognize you, as a blond!" he exclaimed.

Narc was already tipsy. He had spent the afternoon drinking beers in Steve's courtyard. His friends took off and so Narc and I headed to Cercle Rouge for dessert. We had their amazing banoffee pie and the bartender there, an adorable French girl who knows both of us pretty well, took pictures. In one picture we were kissing.

"I'll put them up on Facebook!" she said.

(More potential Facebook drama...)

I was worried that she would tag me in the photos and that TT (who is a Facebook friend of mine) would see me kissing Narc and just feel crappy. Thank God it all worked out. She posted the photos on Narc's wall, but didn't tag any of them. Phew!

I wrote him a beautiful card and I think he finally heard me.

"I'll save this card forever and ever," he said.

I saw him put it in a drawer of his desk. Quite a difference from the time he tossed my Valentine's Day card in 2007.

We went to the Tavern before we headed home and then it was beautiful back at his place. Yeah-- it was kind of a beautiful night. It's the first birthday of his he has ever chosen to spend with me. I was angry and resentful and also "sane" at the same time as I was participating in our beautiful illusion.

The following week, I was mired down in grading, grading and more grading. I had one more strange sex night with Narc. (It was a Wednesday night at 9:00 PM when I arrived, but he was wasted.) Things were so (bad? awesome?) strange that I went into the bathroom and called my sponsor in the middle of it all.

"If you can be 100 % giving to him, you can stay," she said. "But if you can't, you should go, because you're only going to get hurt."

At first, her advice made no sense to me. I AM 100% giving, I thought. I basically am doing whatever he wants... am letting him do whatever he wants.

And then I had a new thought-- that letting him take from me is not the same as having something to give. I let him take all the time, but end up resentful, looking to have expectations met, exhausted, depleted, out of control. Just something I've been thinking about.

My sponsor and I met last Friday at the Hungarian Pastry Shop and then at St. John the Divine, and moved through steps two and three. I had a lot of reading and writing to do around step two and it really felt good. The only caveat-- now I'm back on Step four. Yuck.

I finally got the grades done for one of the colleges at which I teach. I went to the NYU graduation at Yankee Stadium to watch my cousin Jol graduate, and I had to grade papers right through Hillary Clinton's speech! The new Yankee Stadium is weird, by the way. It felt so clean that it was cartoonish-- like it was a Yankee Stadium built for a faux New York in Las Vegas, or like it was part of Disney's Epcot Center or something...

On Friday night B and I went for Filipino food and then to see Angels & Demons. His wife and the baby are out of town visiting family. The movie was pretty bad, but in a way that we enjoyed laughing about. On Saturday I met BigSis for some afternoon shopping and then headed off to Radio City to hear Leonard Cohen perform. My mom and I went together as we are both big fans. It was absolutely amazing. God presence. And maybe because I've been working so hard to find God in this world and in my life, the music seemed especially pertinent. I kept hearing over and over man's alienation from God and our efforts to re-find what is holy in interpersonal love or through song. But the "holy dove" will never be free.

On Sunday I sang in a recital that my voice teacher put together-- the first time that I've ever performed a Wagner piece! I sang Einsam in truben Tagen from Lohengrin. It was awesome. I saw Cherubino there for the first time since our "break-up." It felt good-- like there was something waiting to be rekindled. I hope that we can keep our friendship strong. Afterwards, I had a bite to eat with my voice teacher, Cherubino and another guy in the vocal studio. Then I went down to Tribeca for a double header of The Tudors with Narc. I am sooooo obsessed with that show.

This morning he left to take a course at some New Age institute in Virginia-- something that will teach him how to see things out of body and make predictions about the stock market or something. All of that stuff that he thinks about is a little beyond me.

But it's funny-- whenever we're apart he is suddenly very present. Yet, when he has me, all he does is push me away. Since he "left town" he texted me several times from the airport and called me once from the campus. He doesn't have good cell reception there though and I missed the message. I was watching the ultra-hotness that is Hugh Jackman and Liev Schreiber in Wolverine. NDN, Tamika and I went to the movies!

And now I'm home, and need to go to bed because I'm tired... and because I have a lot of work to do tomorrow.

Good night!


Thursday, April 30, 2009

Cherry Blossom Gray

I'm heading out to see the cherry blossoms at the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens today. But the sky is gray. And it's only 55-degrees. I hope I don't regret it. Rain for the rest of the week. Ick.


Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Perfect on Paper Does Not Equal Perfect

Round two with MJ was not a success. Nope... Not so much. I didn't see him for two weeks or so, as he went home for Passover and I went home for another breast surgery, Passover and Easter. That was a nice weekend, despite the fact that it was difficult to cook and manipulate a 20 lb turkey without flexing any chest muscles. In any case, I got to see GoldenFinch and BabyBird and I spent plenty of time with the delicious little Sesame. Oh-- and my breasts are now restored to perfection. Yay! I hope they stay that way.

The following weekend I suffered a little Narc-related-stress. I received several drunk voice messages followed by crashes and incoherent mutterings on a Friday night and when I hadn't heard back from him by the following evening, I got nervous. I got so nervous that I thought he was dead. I was on the verge of an anxiety attack past midnight on Saturday. I texted his friends and was applying lipstick to head out the door and search for him (yes-- I wear lipstick on all occasions!) when I finally heard from him. He arrived at my house in a drunken state, issuing many loving and delusional speeches-- so loving and delusional that I can't bear to repeat them. He wants us to live in a house on a river where I can teach and he can write. He wants us to spend every night together again as if it hasn't all been broken. Enough said...

Anyway, the weekend after that I finally had date number two with MJ. He took me to the Firebird-- a fancy 19th century style Russian place where he said we could "pretend to be Romanovs." I was looking forward to it. I knew that I hadn't felt any sparks on the first date, but I was willing to give it a second try. Dinner was delicious and waaay too expensive. I felt guilty that he spent so much money on me. I arrived late and in a flood of apologies laughed that he had now seen one of my "character defects."

"I don't see any flaws," he said. "You seem perfect to me."

Up onto a pedestal I went. I don't like the view from there.

He ordered us a caviar course. I don't usually eat caviar. I was in a red dress with a plunging neckline and four-inch heels. I felt a little silly. I ate chicken Kiev for my main course. We talked a lot about our families over dinner. I told him about my mermaid-obsession. I wouldn't mind being friends with him, but he still seemed too meek-mannered and something was just "off" about our dynamic. I felt too powerful-- as if I might bowl him over with the sheer force of my personality. It made me feel clumsy somehow. Again-- I didn't like it.

After dinner, we walked down the block to "Don't Tell Mama's"-- the renowned theater district piano bar. There were no tables available in the main room, so we sat in a lounge off the main entrance until our table would be ready. I went to procure us some diet cokes. When I came back, he was still looking at me with that dreamy, strange look on his face- as if he wanted something from me that I couldn't deliver. I decided to probe a little further.

"Do you have a wild side?" I asked.

"I don't really know what you mean by that."

"You know-- that little spark that gets lit up-- for me it's a nocturnal thing."

I didn't know how to articulate it.

"I've been known to have a few drinks, if that's what you mean," he said.

That's not what I meant. We were on different wave-lengths.

He told me that he had died his hair green once in high school. I laughed and asked if he had used "Manic Panic." And he told me that he had a self-mutilating phase.

"What? You did???"

"Hasn't everyone?" he said, in that same quiet, somber tone.

"Um... I guess."

He suddenly seemed very sad to me. I told him so.

"I'm not sad. I'm quite happy," he said.

But I didn't believe him.

After a period of silence, he tried to fill in the gap. Clearly, he felt awkward.

"My mind is a blank," he told me. "You make me nervous."

"Really? I thought that the silence just meant we were both content."

"You're a very intimidating woman, Hyde."

"I am?"

I don't want to be an intimidating woman. I want a boy with that spark.

In any case, we finally were seated in the main room, right up close near the pianist. I thought the pianist was cute, but he had the same first name at Narc, which somehow made me feel sad, frustrated and mad at myself all at the same time. MJ tried to take my hand. It lay there like a limp fish. I clearly felt awkward.

"I love your hands," he said, as if needing an explanation for his move.


We resumed watching the very mediocre performance unfolding on the small platform stage in front of us. It was an open-mic night, so I untangled myself from the uncomfortable hand-hold and requested a song-- Can't Help Lovin' Dat Man of Mine-- a safe and sturdy choice for me. The pianist played about three keys too low, but it was fine. I tried not to look at MJ while I sang, but I caught his eye once or twice all the same.

At around 1:00 AM, I yawned and told him that I wanted to head home.

"I'll take a cab," I told him.

"I'll ride with you!" he volunteered.

"Aren't you going to Brooklyn?"

"Yeah, but we can make two stops."

I moved to the farthest corner of the cab. The bag of leftover food perched on the middle seat between us. He placed it onto the floor and took my hand again.

"Your office is near here, right?" I said, distracting myself from the feeling that I had been invaded.

Then something awful happened. He awkwardly lifted himself off the seat and came towards me in what seemed like slow motion. It was an obligatory kiss. I didn't want to be kissing him. I felt like he was playing out his own script and I wasn't event here.

"I had to do that," he said.

I hated it, but smiled.

As luck would have it, he did it again before the cab pulled up to my corner. I just wanted to get out of the car.

"Can I call you to go out again?" he asked.

"Oh- um, yeah...sure! Call me tomorrow. Thanks for dinner!"

I raced out of there, tottering along the uneven sidewalk in my super-high-heels.

TT had texted me earlier in the evening that he was at Cheers. He works in television and had gotten a hold of several extra-large Elvis poster-boards. They were being held in the Cheers basement. He asked if I wanted to come by and pick them up. I just wanted to see a familiar face, to be defined by a familiar gaze to restore normalcy. He was tipsy when I arrived, but his face lit up to see me.


"I need a hug," I whined.

"What's wrong?"

"I don't know. I'm an asshole. I just feel like an asshole," I said.

I was confused and felt guilty and disappointed and somehow robbed of myself all at once.

He locked me into an embrace.

"You're not an asshole," he said. "You're Hyde, my friend and a very special woman."


"Do you mind if I ask what happened?"

"I don't know... I was on a date... I didn't want to be on the date at some point. I mean, I did, but I didn't want to be kissed. And somehow, I kissed him anyway. I just feel guilty and terrible and like I'm making mistakes left and right."

TT seemed surprised that I was dating. He decided to make his play.

"You know how I feel about you," he said. "I could fall in love with you so easily... so easily. I would love to take you on a proper date. I think we could have something really real between us."

I just looked at him.

"I don't want to confuse you any more," he went on. "But I don't want to miss my chance either. Do you want to go outside and talk about it?"

We went out into the streetlight. I was still standing with my hands around his neck. He continued to make his case. I didn't know what to do or say.

"We're both in a different place than we were years ago... better places. I mean, I know how much you've changed. I thought you were great then and I think you're great now. I just want to keep you safe," he said.

I didn't know how to respond, so I kissed him. Then I kissed him again.

"What do you think, Hyde?"

"I don't know. I need some time to clear my head. Just give me a call tomorrow."

He went into the bar to get me my Elvis pictures and then walked me home.

I couldn't sleep a wink that night. A third of my brain wondered where Narc was and what he was doing. The next morning I had to be up early for a follow-up with the plastic surgeon on Long Island. I was unbearably tired. When I got back to the city, I fell asleep for a three hour nap. Upon awakening, I had two voice mails-- one from MJ and one from TT. Guess I set that one up. I didn't bother to answer either of them. Instead, I got dressed to meet my friend Drew in Tribeca for dinner and an "Annie Sing-Along" at the new branch of the 92nd street Y on Hudson Street. Narc had sent me a text so I stopped off to see him for a drink before finding Drew, as I was meeting her in his neighborhood.

"I wish it didn't have to be this way between us," I said. I was bursting with wanting to tell him things that there is no point in telling.

"I just don't know if you and I are in the cards," he replied.

"Yes, you do. We're not in the cards."

"I don't know, Hyde... That's all in the future."

"The future is where I'm trying to go."

I was glad to get away from him and to have a nice girls chat with Drew over a big bowl of pasta. The Annie Sing-Along was great as well-- just what I needed. I sang and danced in the street on my way back to Narc's that night.

By the next day, I had received another text message from MJ and several from TT.

I'm getting nervous. I must have really freaked you out, TT wrote.

I called him back right before my Sunday night AA meeting. I tried to be truthful.

"I'm not entirely over that other guy," I said (Narc, of course). "And I don't know what you expect from me by 'going on a proper date.' I don't want to drag you on an emotional roller-coaster with me when I don't know what I want."

"I'm willing to take the risk," he said. "I don't want to lose my chance. I'd rather you take me on that roller coaster than some other guy."

"Give me a few days to think about all of this," I said.

Narc was supposed to come to my place after AA. We had spent the morning looking for his favorite ducks at Battery Park and had agreed to meet up later. However, when I texted him about it, he told me that he was going for drinks with CouchSleeper and the boys, as Couchy had just come back from Ireland. I felt blown off and powerless.

Here's how it went down:

Hyde: Are you blowing me off? Our plan was for 9-ish

Narc: Was just going out for a little bit, really want to see Couchy, can still meet you later, though how late are you up?

Hyde: I don't want to wait up for you. I don't like the feeling. I'll just see you some other time. But seriously, I thought we had plans...

At that point he called me and I told him only to come if he could come before 11:00 PM. He agreed. In the meanwhile, I went down to NDN and Tamika's apartment and ate dinner with them and NDN's friend, RDN. They made fettuccine with clam sauce and NDN's famous garlic bread. Yum.

At 11:00 PM, not having heard from him, I sent him another text: ?? On your way?

No response.

Hyde (11:22): You are inconsiderate of me. I hate being treated this way

Narc (11:32): I was just heading off!! Taking forever to get check, figuring it out... If you're to bed soon though I can just head home, get up early and run

Hyde: You were supposed to be here before 11

Narc: I know I know, was trying to get out. Leaving in few but think I'll just go home. Closer and really want to get up and run etc.

Hyde: Just leave me alone.

Narc: (11:53) Heading off.

On Monday, after therapy I set off to babysit Sesame. In the middle of our playtime, I got another message from MJ. (He had also sent me an email at some point over the weekend.)

MJ: Hey Hyde, Are you having a good Monday? Everything go ok at the doctor and at Annie?

I took a while before answering, but I finally wrote back: Weekend was good. Hope yours was too! Had a great time & we def have a lot in common. But I'm just not feeling the right connection as far as a relationship.

MJ: That's terrible! Mind if I ask what u don't see in me?

I didn't answer. About an hour later, I got another text from him:
Sorry, better you don't answer I guess. U seemed perfect to me and my soul felt like it died at your text. I wish you had given me a chance to not be nervous with you. I'm sorry.

All I can say is-- HIGH DRAMA! It never would have worked out.

Meanwhile, Narc and I hadn't spoken all day. On Tuesday morning I noticed that he posted on his facebook page that he was planning to see a movie that afternoon that we had agreed to see together. So, I left him a comment-- "Weren't you going to wait for me?"

"Thought you had 'Idol night' with NDN and Tamika, " he responded.

"Whatever..." I wrote.

Then our little tiff shifted to text.

Narc: If you really want to see Anvil I will wait, just didn't think I was going to see you for a week or what not.

Hyde: I just feel like we said we were going to see it and you are just going to blow me off again. It makes me feel rotten and sad and not worth much to you.

Narc: I said I wanted to see it in the next couple of days, and that was several days ago. I know you're always into scheduling and planning everything out, etc. but sometimes I feel like being spontaneous and just going to see a movie. If you want to see it, when are you free next?

Hyde: Do what you will. I am too upset to attempt to figure this out. My feelings were really hurt on Sunday and you never apologized. We are on different planets.

When I got home that afternoon, I had a lengthy email from him:

So let me see if I understand this... I told you I was going to see you on Sunday, and I was. My impression was that you, after AA (around 8:30), were heading home to, I don't know, "do other stuff / mellow out / relax / whatever", and that you weren't expecting me until a bit later, like 10-ish. If I'd known you were expecting me IMMEDIATELY after AA, at 8:30, I would have gone straight from M's place to yours, as it was only 15 blocks straight up. But, because we wrapped early at M's, and I thought I had about an hour to kill, and because CouchSleeper, one of my best friends, had just gotten back into town after SIX MONTHS away and wanted to see Mike and myself a for a little bit, I thought I would see him, and then go to see you. We all met, I iterated right up front that I couldn't stay out long because I was heading off to see you around 10, and CouchSleeper said that was fine, as he was jetlagged all to hell and didn't want to be out for more than an hour or so anyway. So we had a couple of pints, and attempted to get our check (which happened rather slower than I would've thought, but still, we finally got it), and off I was, about to head to you, when--

And let me see if I have this now...

You. Hyde. Hyde -----------. Gave me grief. Because... I was: "late".

You. Really. Of all the people in the world. Were upset... Because, though I kept my plans with you (despite the fact that everyone ended up trying to keep me out later anyway), I ended up running 45 minutes over. Seriously. You. Upset at me. For being late.

You see where I'm going with this? Because really--

That. Is. So. Fucking. Funny.

Tell you what Hyde--from now on, I'll just stop talking to you every time you're late, and we'll see how far we get with all that. What do you say? Given the fact that you run anywhere from 30 to 90 minutes late EVERY SINGLE TIME I see you, I'm thinking we're looking at a lot of "Leave me alone, don't talk to me" responses from me from now on.

Sound good?


I guess I pissed him off. So I wrote back:

Oh, Narc...

I don't want to be in a fight with you. I hope you don't want to stay mad at me.

I wasn't mad because you were late. I was upset because I felt rejected & blown off. A simple "I'm sorry" would probably have made me feel better. I just felt dispensable and taken for granted.

In any case-- I'm sorry if I overreacted, but maybe I'm just sensitive in general when it comes to our relationship. It's hard to deal with the toxic feelings of mistrust and rejection that I shove down all the time. I know that I either need to find a way to live with these feelings or cut things off with you. I go over and over this issue in my mind and it always runs in the same circle. I feel like shit, and so much of what has happened is emotionally unbearable for me, but I love you and want you somehow in my life. So, I'm trying to bear it. I'm still trying to live with these feelings but it hurts and yes-- probably makes me overly sensitive. I hope you can understand all of that and act with some compassion and largess towards me when these things arise. This had nothing to do with lateness. It had to do with the fact that I feel rejected by you, who I love so very much.

It is what it is. You are who you are and I am who I am. Let's just let it go.


And finally from him:

I'm sorry. I'm sure I overreacted as well--I'm just sick and tired of all the drama, and am, really, looking for a drama-free life at this point (or at least as much as I can manage). Am sure we can probably put this behind us.


Later that night he sent me a text: Haven't watched Tudors yet if you want to watch it together.

Hyde: Yes, want to watch it with you. Just got home and am making spaghetti. Got your mail. Sorry I bring drama. I also bring love. Love you...

I ended up staying at his place that night and we made vague plans to go see "Anvil" (the movie) on Thursday. There were two shows-- an 11:00 AM and a 1:00 PM.

Needless to say, when I called him Wednesday night to figure out the details, I couldn't get a hold of him. Then all day on Thursday he didn't answer any of my calls or texts until 5:00 PM when he wrote:

Hey, just got up little while ago., Couldn't get to sleep until like 6 AM! Then slept in all day...Ugh...

I think it's complete and utter bullshit. I haven't spoken to him since but I really am so sick of this. I'm sick of boys in general. I want to give dating a rest for a little while and just do something else-- my school work, for example. And I want to start painting again. The only time I ever truly feel like myself is the one hour a week in my voice lesson. I want to make that bigger.

I did have a nice day yesterday even with Narc blowing me off. I met Pixie in the afternoon and we walked through Central Park and I ate a snowcone and declared that the statue of Robert Burns was my boyfriend. She said she prefers Walter Scott across the way. We watched "Thoth" singing under the bridge by the fountain. He has some new female protege. Afterwards I met Drew and we went to the gym, to our AA meeting and then all of us out to the diner. We ended up sitting with that guy I sort of dated last summer from my home group (although it was really more like a series of "non-dates.") He said that he wants to memorize the last speech given by Archbishop Romero of El Salvador, in Spanish, and recite it at the next AA talent show. I love being surrounded by interesting people. For a brief moment, I really appreciated my life-- here... in NY City... young and energetic and financially secure and totally free. I have complete freedom. I'm lucky that way.

In the meanwhile, I got another email from MJ:

I saw this and thought of you. I guess I should stop that. :)

I decided to answer:

I'm going to be in Vermont that weekend. No mermaid parade for me, I guess! :( Didn't mean to make you feel bad. Don't know what else to say about all that, so I'll leave it at that. Hope you're having a good day.


And then I got what I think is a very strange response-- an email to which I gave no reply.

I've been to the Mermaid Parade once, but I was told the one I saw had less nudity than the previous year, so I was disappointed.

I don't begrudge you your cruelty. It helps balance out wicked things I've done in the past. Eventually, when I suffer enough, I'll reach some sort of peaceful equilibrium.

On that note, I'm working from home today because I have a doctor's appointment. I have these antibodies that often accompany auto-immune disease, so I have to monitor them closely. It's all part of the same plan.

Hope you're having a good day as well.

Anyway, this weekend a major event is taking place-- NDN and Tamika are tying the knot in Philadelphia! My parents are invited to the wedding, so they're picking me up tomorrow afternoon and driving there. I'm excited to wear my Nicole Miller gown. I'm even more excited to see them bring in this next phase of life. It's really kind of amazing. And I'm soooo grateful and relieved that NDN picked an awesome girl like Tamika.

So... that's it for now. I'm exhausted from re-hashing all of the garbage that went into this post.

Hope you are all well out there!


Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Meeting MJ

It has been a busy few weeks around here. B and his wife asked me to be Godmother to their daughter. I am so honored that I am without words. Some kind of real healing has truly taken place. The baptism is coming up on Saturday. I bought her a beautiful gold locket. yay!

On Friday afternoon, despite the rain, I kept my appointment to have a Brazilian Keratin treatment on my hair. They instructed me that I could not get my hair wet, clip it, put it in a ponytail or even tuck it behind my ears for four days! I finally get to wash it tonight. I also had to endure some gynecological torture before meeting Hammer, the Alaskan and their friends at synagogue that night. The Alaskan has been working for about two years towards his conversion to Judaism before their wedding in June. The ceremony took place on Friday. He made such a beautiful speech. I was really quite moved. Afterwards, Hammer hosted a little dinner party at their apartment. I got to meet some of their new friends.

In other news, I finally had the date with "perfect on paper," from now on to be known as "MJ." When I posted last, we were supposed to go out that night, but he got sick and had to cancel. We rescheduled for Saturday. I spent most of the afternoon hanging out with NDN. We went to Bloomingdale's where I sugar-crashed a little bit on Forty Carrots frozen yogurt and NDN had his makeup done at the Lancome Counter. He is into being a rocker these days, a la Adam Lambert. Back at my place, we took topless pictures of him making love to my plastic Guitar Hero guitar and a dagger that I brought back from Russia while I got ready for my date. I tried to ignore the gnawing Narc-anxiety present since I hadn't heard from him on Friday night. I need to just assume that he is doing the worst of what I fear at all times, since it's not in my control anyway.

MJ and I met at "Kefi" on the Upper West Side at 6:45. I had to set the date early, as Contessa's housewarming party was later on in the evening.

(HYDE: If you wanted to, we could have dinner on Sat and you could come with me to the party, but that might be kind of weird for a first date. What do you think?

MJ: I think we need more context to determine how weird that would be. How about we do dinner on Saturday and then decide whether I accompany you further?)

I don't want to turn this date into something blog-dissected, but the bottom line is that we got along really well. He is very, very, VERY impressively smart; he is randomly interested in all things Russian (as am I-- we were even both in St. Petersburg the same summer in college) and he was kind and chivalrous and I felt comfortable with him. He is also responsible (as in he has a good job and lives like an adult), he's close with his family, and he nurtures his spiritual/religious side. I'm not 100% sure that the chemistry is there, but I think I need to give it a little more time before I can tell.

Since dinner went so well we decided it was best for him to continue on and accompany me to the party. We looked for a homeless person to donate our delicious dinner leftovers and he treated to a cab up to Inwood. As Contessa is an architect and her husband is a composer, the party was full of interesting artistic types. I barely knew anyone there, but in a way it was better that way. When we first arrived, I had to use the restroom and when I came out, MJ was talking to two strangers. I thought that was a good sign--that he is comfortable in his own skin.

At one point, a choreographer asked if we had known each other long.

"Um, no... we just met," I said.

"How wonderful! You are still discovering each other!" she declared.

Also-- I told him I don't drink, although I didn't explain why (he didn't ask), and he didn't have a single drink the whole night. It was very sweet and respectful and wouldn't you know-- there are people who can comfortably socialize with strangers and on a first date without alcohol!

We stayed at the party until well after midnight. In the cab on the way home, he asked me to sing something in French and held my hand. I was grateful that he didn't try to kiss me. I think that at this point in my life, I need to develop friendships first in dating. I can't deal with much more than that right now.

Anyway, it was all great. The only problem is that he's not really my "type" (which may be a good thing, given the guys that my "picker" has picked for me). It may never click though, and I don't want to force it either.

Later that night (at around 1:00 AM), as luck would have it, just as I had put Narc momentarily out of my mind, he called. I went. He was at "Edwards" reading Tarot for his friend Miranda. I had met her a few times and said my hello's just as she was saying her goodbye's. He was in "I love you mode," making out with me, groping me at the bar, and all that. I felt conflicted and strange, but blissfully obliterated in the black hole of him-- a place from where I need not deal with anything else or anything real. We were up until 5:00 in the morning. It was one of those nights I wait for-- the ones that make it worth tolerating all of the other crap. (Well, sort of...)

On Sunday I stayed with him and we watched "Forgetting Sarah Marshall." At around 3:30 we took a walk to Battery Park to look at his favorite ducks. It seems that they haven't yet arrived for the season. I had to leave to meet Sugary for book-work and a meeting at 5:00, but I went back to Narc's at 9:00, still in my date jeans and tight lacy top from the night before. Ug. In some ways I totally suck. My sponsor calls it "powerlessness." I have to agree...

MJ sent me an email:

I wanted to tell you that it was well worth the wait to finally meet you. You seem like an amazing person. To quote the choreographer from last night, I hope you'll allow me the opportunity to continue"discovering" you, he said.

Yesterday I babysat for Sesame again. She is just a delight and a doll. When the rain cleared I took her for a stroll on Austin Street and we stopped in at Victoria's Secret. Some pushy saleswoman kept asking me what kind of bra I wanted.

"I'm just looking," I said.

"Can I measure you?"

"I'm alright. I'm just looking."

"Alright. Are you nursing?" she asked.

"No!" I looked at her as if she were an idiot and walked away.

It was only moments later that I realized that she asked me that because I was with a six month old.

Oh no! I thought. She probably thinks I'm the kind of mom who doesn't nurse. I WOULD nurse if she were mine!

I wanted to go back and explain it to her, but then I laughed at myself and decided not to bother. I did end up getting measured, was very surprised at the size, became convinced that I should take advantage of their sales, and so, I bought some very sexy lingerie. woo hoo!!! (Not that there's anyone in particular to share it with, but whatever...)

Anyway-- this week is busy-- I've got Passover and Easter and the christening. I hope you are all well out there. Off to teach another class in a few minutes. World War II is about to begin...!


Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Puerto Rico & Puffery

I'm back from Puerto Rico! It was a great trip-- the sunsets were amazing; it was wonderful to be with my family; Meema was easy going and fit in well with the whole crazy lot of us.

My parents like to travel off the beaten path and several years ago, fell in love with a surfer town on the Caribbean West Coast of Puerto Rico-- Rincon. My mom is always talking about buying some real estate there. (If any of you have read my blog from the beginning, you may recall that I was there in Jan. 2005 with my family and Hammer). I think I was a little nervous about going back to the same place, given that the last time I was there, I was in the throes of alcoholic misery. But I had nothing to fear. All in all- it was a very successful vacation!

Meema and I decided that we wanted to get tattoos together, but the town was so small that they didn't have a tattoo parlor. We drove up to the Atlantic Coast on Thursday and found a tattoo place there, but couldn't get inked because to do so would have meant staying out of the ocean on our last day. (Sigh.) I guess we'll have to go together somewhere here in NY and maybe just pretend that our tattoos are Puerto Rican. In any case, I wore my bikini and felt good about it; I ate coconut (always a favorite activity of mine); I drove a jet ski and I went horseback riding on the beach. So perfect.

NYC was somehow so gray when I returned. (Has it always been this gray?)

I will try to post some pictures here in another day or two.

In any case, it was also nice to have a week away from Narc and dating and teaching and all the rest. He texted me a few times while he was gone about some horrendous case of pink eye, but I tried not to let it make me stressed. We talked on the phone once and he told me that he loves that new VH1 show "Tough Love" due to his misogynist streak. (Yes, he actually said that). He likes to see the women "put in their place, for once." I tried watching an episode when I got back to NY but found myself nauseated. I've decided not to become a viewer.

But worse than that, my friend Drew is going through a personal crisis and texted me every two minutes about some drama that she decided to increasingly complicate with her every decision, taking none of my advice. I am really frustrated with the whole thing because I"m worried about her and she doesn't seem to want to help herself. There's nothing more I can do except to ask her to meet me at a meeting. I spoke to my sponsor (Sugary) about it and felt a little better.

On Saturday, when I returned, NDN and Tamika and I went out for NV's birthday and then down to the village to another birthday party. They taught me a new word: "PUFFERY." I like it. (It reminded me of Narc, but they explained that it usually applies to the claims of commerical enterprises. For example, see "Custy's World Famous International Buffet.") I am going to try to find ways to incorporate the word into more daily use.

I'm trying to recommit myself to AA these days, as I have had several mounting resentments about stupid things. Sugary and I are going to start meeting regularly on Sundays. Also, I have been listening to Joe & Charlie and I love their calming voices.

The week before I left for Puerto Rico, Narc came up to my place drunk and told me all sorts of ridiculous thing-- that I am "better than a fairy tale" to him, his "one true love," his "goddess," "better than any novel," etc. I think it's really unfair of him to keep doing this to me, although I know that by allowing it I'm really doing it to myself. I asked him the next day if he really meant it or if he was just drunk.

"A little of both," he said.

"So, you do love me?"

"Of course I love you!" he said. "Like I haven't loved anyone. But who knows about the things I say when I'm drunk. You remember how it is-- none of it counts."

oh yeah...

I'm trying to forget all about that because I have a date on Thursday with a co-worker of my friend Jake. (I think I already told you all that in my previous post). I'm excited about it and nervous, because he's so "perfect on paper," but at the same time, I'm already starting to write him off because he's such a "nice guy." Why do I DO that? I really want to control myself and give this guy a chance. He has called me a few times, including to welcome me back from Puerto Rico-- he doesn't play games. Then again, I haven't even met him yet. He could be awfully unattractive, in which case all of this speculation and all of these nerves are pointless. I'm going to get my roots done before the date, anyway. All of that sunshine oxidized my hair and turned it redder. I want to go more blond.

I suppose that's it for now. I babysat for Sesame again yesterday. She is so beautiful and delicious and I just love her so, so, so, so much!! I love how she loves me, too. She is always excited to see me.

It still feels like winter today. When is spring coming?

Hyde-- the world's most fabulous blogger.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Getting the Hell Out of Dodge! (via "Idlewild")

I'm getting ready to head to Puerto Rico with my family! My mom booked a ridiculous flight. We're all meeting at JFK at 4:30 AM. I'm just gonna stay up straight through.

I went to the hardware store to pick up a plastic squirt bottle for my hair gel. The guy who works there always flirts with me. He sold me a bar of soap by likening me to Cleopatra.

"Caeser will fall to his knees!" he said.

He says he's from the Dominican Republic, but I think he was an Egyptian in a former life.

I never wrote back to BottleRocket. I decided his email was a little gross and not worth my time. Jake is setting me up with a colleague of his, though, and I think there's some potential there. I saw Narc again. I love him and hate him and love him and hate him. I so have to break this stupid cycle...this stupid, stupid addiction.

I started reading "Variety of Religious Experiences" by William James and I downloaded the Joe & Charlie tapes. A girl can only do so much. Despite my attempts at spiritual growth, I'm still listening to Carousel and with half of my heart, seriously asking "What's the Use of Wondering?"

Anyway... I have to go finish packing, shower and then maybe hit the piano bars. The St. Patty's Day drinkers are out early. Gross. I've always hated people who drink on St. Patrick's Day-- even when I was a drunk myself.

I'll be wearing my first bikini on the beach in another day or two. It's hot pink. Wish me luck!!


Tuesday, March 10, 2009


In the spirit of TT, I have yet another suitor who likes to say "Howdy."

I went on a second date with the guy I had the museum date with. His name is BottleRocket. He just sent me an email in which the subject line read "howdy:"

Hey, that was fun the other night. I especially liked talking and walking and thinking on our feet. I think next time, however, we might want to spend a little more time kissing and less time walking and talking. Don't you think?


Um...what do I do if the answer is "no?" Does that mean I don't like this guy? I just don't think I'm ready. I slept with Narc again-- twice. God, I need help...


Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Two steps forward, One step back...

Well, I guess I never got around to writing out everything that happened with Cherubino. The bottom line is that I now have a new sponsor. Cherubino went through a break-up and stopped attending our home group, going only to meetings in Brooklyn. For about six months, my program grew completely stagnant, as I only went through the motions. I was angry with her and it was a bad "break-up," but I think with time we will be friends again. I am going to re-work the steps with my new sponsor, and although transition is never easy for me, I feel like it's a real opportunity to grow.

As for the rest of it-- I made it 38 days without seeing Narc. The museum date that I mentioned at the end of the last post ended up being really nice-- the most promising date yet. However, that freaked me out a little, because, to tell you the truth, I don't think I'm really ready to date. I'm not sure yet whether it's good for me to push myself or whether pushing myself is just adding more stress and discomfort to my life right now. In any case, the museum guy wanted to see me again as well, but I ended up with laryngitis last week and couldn't date anyone.

In the meanwhile, Narc texted me on Sunday February 22nd. He said that he missed me and that he didn't know what to do. I was in an emotional head-space when I got the text, so I wrote back right away that I loved him and that I missed him too and that I was sad that we couldn't be together. I already wrote about all this in an earlier post.

We ended up texting back and forth all week long.

The following Monday while I was babysitting for Sesame, I sent him a text.

How was your Oscar party? I asked.

A few hours later I got a response:

Just woke up. Masturbating and thinking of you. Want to come in your mouth.

Well, I didn't know how to reply to that. So I wrote him something telling him that we couldn't be sexual with each other anymore. He insisted, trying to get me to call him to have phone sex, and I just didn't answer.

Several hours after that (while I was in the Gap with Sesame), he wrote again asking if I would have dinner with him. Even though I knew I shouldn't, I found myself in that strange mental blank spot, agreeing to meet him.

Only if I DON'T go back to your apartment and no talking about anything emotional, I said-- as if that were possible.

We met at Blaue Gans and it was as if no time had passed. All the chemistry was still there. I hugged him and he put his hand on my leg and everything felt so right and I missed him so much. The bartended smiled to see me and said she hadn't seen me in a while. I told him I had tried dating. He told me he had been drinking heavily and not eating because of it. He had a hole in his pants and was anxious about a particularly bad blackout the night before. I don't know if he intended to be manipulative, but it certainly pushed all of my mothering buttons. Before long, I was back in his apartment. He told me how much he loves me. I said it wasn't enough.

"I want to be cherished," I said.

"I'll find a way to show you that I cherish you."

"You can't, Narc. I want to be with someone who feels lucky to be with me."

"I DO feel lucky to be with you!"

"No, you don't."

We talked briefly about the whole cheating thing (which he still denied).

"Even if you were just flirting and getting phone numbers, that's still not good enough," I said. "That's not what I want."

"I guess I wasn't a very good boyfriend," he told me, with a sigh.

I think that's as close to an admission/apology as I'm ever going to get.

Obviously (as you all know me by now), I spent the night.

The next morning I had to wake up at 6:00 AM to get home in time to change and then get to teaching. He called me in between my classes. I'm too lazy right now to go through the whole conversation, but the bottom line-- he asked to see me again that night and he asked to borrow $200. He had blown through his monthly allowance on booze. For some reason, I agreed. I called him back a few minutes later to tell him I was uncomfortable lending him the money and he promised to try to borrow it from Mike. But I reassured him that if he was in a real jam, I'd help him.

That night, after AA, he came over. It was as if nothing had changed. We cuddled and said "I love you" and watched Obama give his State of the Union address. I loved sleeping next to him again. I should have known it was too soon to see him when I'm still so in love with him. But when we left my place the next morning, he told me that he had been unable to get in touch with Mike. We walked to an ATM, and I uncomfortably lent him the money.

On Thursday I went to meet him at his apartment and after having sex again, we went for dumplings in Chinatown. I told him that I felt addicted to him and that it was sick and that I felt helpless because I wanted so badly to be moving on. He seemed sad and said that he loved me and didn't want to not be a part of each other's lives. We spent the entire afternoon together until I had to leave for AA. He humored me by shopping for makeup at the MAC counter in Bloomingdale's and watching me try on sundresses at Old Navy. (I'm going to Puerto Rico in another week or so...)

On Friday night he came back to my place and spent the night again. It was the second day I had awful laryngitis and absolutely no voice and so I couldn't hit the town. He brought some DVD's and I felt cozy in my pajamas.

On Saturday morning he left early, as my mom was coming over to see my new pink walls, to see me try on my new bathing suits (including a bikini- yay!) and to pick me up to go to the opera. We saw an amazing production of Il Trovatore which, for some strange reason, in fifteen years of season's tickets to the opera, I still hadn't seen. I texted Narc twice that afternoon and he didn't answer me. I wrote to him again that evening and he didn't answer. I was feeling anxious.

By Sunday the anxiety had overtaken me. I felt stupid for getting sucked back in. I felt powerless and was full of self-doubt and feelings of rejection-- exactly where I started when I was pushed into ending it! How could one simple dinner on Monday night turn into a week of binging on his company, and end with the same feelings of regret and pain and shame and doubt and anxiety? I had the welcome distraction for most of the afternoon of Tamika's bridal shower. She looked beautiful and her friends made a really lovely tea party. But I knew I had to get to a meeting that night, and I'm glad I did.

My new sponsor has a lot of sponsees and they are all welcoming me with open arms. Many of them were at the Sunday night meeting, and one of my new "sober sisters" and I went for a long walk and chatted about it all. I also got to talk to my sponsor after the meeting, which helped to calm me down and gave me a sense of direction. With all of these feelings of powerlessness and "unmanageability," I am exactly where I need to be, re-starting step 1.

On Monday night, Narc texted me that he would be over at around 11:00 or maybe later, to pay me back my money. I was a little pissed off. I had spent the day grading papers, holed up in the snowstorm, and I hadn't heard from him since he had ignored my texts for the previous two days. I didn't want to wait up for him while he was out drinking with his friends. For all I knew, he could have showed up at 3:00 AM and drunk. And I had to be up at 7:00 AM to teach. So, I told him that he shouldn't come.

How about Tuesday night? he asked.

I'm busy, I said. But you can drop the money off tonight or tomorrow at your convenience. Just leave it with the doorman.

On Tuesday (yesterday), he called me in the afternoon and asked if he could come up and see me and drop the money. I happened to be home, unable to take my voice lesson, due to last week's laryngitis. I agreed to see him.

I felt that same mix of pain, sweetness, love, frustration, anxiety, self-loathing, love and love that I always get and I knew I had to give myself the space to get better. So, after spending an hour or two together, I told him that I needed at least two months apart from him with no contact. He was frustrated and pointed out that he would be entirely alone, as he goes days on end without talking to another human being and his only mode of interaction is over Jack Daniels. He had renewed his resolve to get off of hard liquor because he wants to finish one of his re-writes.

"Now I'll really be alone," he said.

Again, my buttons were pushed, but I stuck to my guns, only because I can see no other solution. It was so sad. I love him so much. He walked me to the corner of Lexington and waited in the cold until I could get a cab to my meeting. As the cab pulled away, he waited and waved. It was unlike him.

Yesterday was a strange day in other ways as well. I don't know if you all remember the story about the OldChoirMan-- my choir director from college. In any case, it's a story that I really don't care to recount, except to say that he left me pretty emotionally fucked up back then. I found out, yesterday, that he was just arrested for having a sexual relationship with a 15 year old high school student. He's in jail right now, awaiting bail. The whole thing makes me feel very sad. I can't sort through it much more than that. Sad.

Sad about that. Sad about Narc.

But here I am, another day, and I did what I had to do to keep myself safe in terms of Narc. Yes, I spent a week with him, but I haven't forgotten the lessons I've learned and I don't want to end up back where I was. So-- that's progress, right?

I'm looking forward to Puerto Rico. We're leaving on the 15th. My whole family is going and Meema is coming along for a few days as well.

Anyway, I should go eat breakfast now.


Friday, February 20, 2009

On Dating...

So, I've tried to immerse myself in the dating world, given that I am attempting to fully and finally move on from Narc. This is not an easy task, as I am still in love with him and probably will be for quite some time. That said, how much of myself do I have to emotionally expend to casually date?

I think I first made the decision to really do it when at my birthday party, Jake's girlfriend offered to set me up with a friend of hers. She is a total matchmaker. It's in her blood. I was mad at Narc, having just fought with him when he left to go drinking with his friends, so I agreed that she could give that guy my phone number.

I didn't think much about it in the following few weeks because I was caught up in my surgery and the holidays and my general anxiety about Narc cheating on me. As you know, I broke up with him in that horribly sad fight on the morning of New Year's Eve. I was feeling very weak at the time and feared that my iron count might be low from all of the surgical blood loss. Plus, I have low iron to begin with and take prescription pills for that. I had scheduled an appointment to get my blood checked and was sitting in the waiting room of the doctor's office when I heard a woman call my name. It was Jake's girlfriend. Even though I had only met her once before and even though I was a teary, bleary mess with hardly a touch of makeup on, she recognized me and came over to say hello.

"Did that guy ever call you?" she asked.

I told her that I hadn't heard from him and I told her about my breakup with Narc.

"Good riddance to him! The guy is a loser," she said. "You deserve so much better!"

We talked about her most recent (pre-Jake) breakup and about how she moved on. She insisted that plentiful dating was the cure. She suggested an online profile.

"Oh God, that sounds awful," I said. "I wouldn't know what to write. I can't stand the idea of packaging and selling myself like that!"

"Don't worry, I'll help you with it!"

I was convinced that our paths crossed that afternoon for a reason and I resolved to take new risks and to try to truly move on.

I was scared of dating. In some ways, I still am. First and foremost, I have never tried dating sober and I couldn't imagine taking my clothes off in front of a stranger without the lubrication of alcohol. All of my friends laughed at that idea and told me that dating didn't necessarily mean taking my clothes off. But I guess, being new to dating, my only real experience lies in drunken one-night-stands. What is dating without taking your clothes off? Somehow, that idea seemed even scarier to me.

In any case, the guy finally emailed me and we set up a coffee date for the first week of January. The only problem was that in the interim, Narc and I got "back together" and he became my boyfriend. I kept the date anyway. That afternoon I was shopping with Anxious, and bought some smoking green eyeshadow at the Mac counter. I was so nervous to meet this guy, but when I arrived, I realized that all my fears were unfounded. He was just some nerdy, nice, smart guy. I was afraid of being judged, of not being pretty enough, of not knowing what to say... But I ended up feeling pretty gorgeous and smart and felt for the first time that I have choice. I think my old M-O was to wait for someone to show interest in me and then to just take that person hostage. I so don't need to do that anymore.

Anyway, the date was fine, but there a was no real chemistry. Besides, I was back with Narc and felt guilty for even meeting this guy. I tucked it away as a neat little reference point for future dating and I moved on.

Narc and I remained officially "together" for another two weeks. After the second breakup I was devastated and could hardly breathe. As much as I was bolstered by my good friends and family, withdrawal from him was sharp and painful and I could hardly bear it. I texted Jake about my awful withdrawal pains and asked if I could meet with him and his girlfriend for the help she promised setting up an online profile.

So, we met the following week after a Thursday night AA meeting at a little cafe on the Upper East Side. I really like her (I should probably give her a proper blog-name. How about Shadkhen!). After dinner and conversation, the three of us went back to Jake's place to work on my profile. She wrote something cute and breezy that didn't sound at all like me, and pulled some pictures off of my facebook page. Then, it was just a matter of waiting.

Well, there are plenty of guys looking for love, that's for sure. Many of the men who have contacted me are just not to my liking. But there was one guy who seemed cute enough and also interesting. He works in equities, but also plays bass in a band. I thought it was an okay balance. We emailed back and forth a bit via the website before he sent me his phone number and asked me to call him. I was a little annoyed at being asked to take the initiative (I want to be courted, for god's sake!) but I sucked it up and made the phone call. We played phone tag for another day before I finally got a hold of him while I was at my parents house on Long Island.

He had a sexy voice, which is very important to me, and seemed nice enough, but it was the most awkward conversation I've ever had in my entire life. It was so artificial and weird. In any case, we set up a coffee date for the following Thursday.

I met him not far from Union Square and we had a quick lunch. Everything that came out of my mouth seemed to impressive him. Well-- whether or not he meant it, he kept on remarking about how "impressive" I am.

If I'm impressing you so much, you must not be smart enough for me, I thought.

I realize that I have to be careful though. I'm one of those people who doesn't want to be a member of any club that would accept me as a member. A sign of low self-esteem? Probably.

It was a nice lunch. I wasn't totally feeling him, but I wasn't sure if that were due to lack of chemistry or due to my total emotional confusion. I just have a really rusty radar and I'm not used to trusting it. He said that he wanted to see me again, and right away. He asked if I were free for dinner that night. I agreed to meet him for a quick bite.

From there, I was off to get my roots colored. I was so unsettled by the experience of a date with someone other than Narc, that I freaked out and told them to make me a blond. (My hair was a dark brownish-red). About halfway through the bleaching process I freaked out again and told them to keep it red, but a blondish red. It actually turned out really pretty. It's a reddish strawberry blond now. I might go blonder this summer, but I'm not sure. There's something about going blond following a boob-job that just doesn't sit right with me!

Anyway, I went to AA after getting my hair colored and then back downtown to meet him at a little cafe in the West Village called La Lanterna. Our conversation over dinner was fine-- passable, I guess. But I was still having a really hard time sorting through my feelings. He was telling me that he's a fan of Star Trek, Next Generation. I laughed and told him that I had never seen the show but was willing to remain open minded.

"I'll have to show you an episode," he said.

He said a lot of things like that. When I mentioned the opera he said "we'll have to go!" When he mentioned roller-blading he said "I'll have to teach you!" When I mentioned a road-trip I once took he said "We'll have to go on a road trip!" It was weird.

After dinner he suggested a walk. We walked past Lupa.

"I'll have to take you to eat there!" he said.

It was a cold night and I was freezing. I didn't want to go for a "drink" with him. I sort of just wanted to go home. He, however, didn't want the night to end.

"We could go back to my place and watch an episode of Star Trek," he suggested.

Of course I knew what that meant. But, I found myself being rather passive and robotic, and for some reason, agreed.

He lived around the corner in a grimy studio apartment with a large flat-screen TV. The futon was at a weird angle to the television.

"You'll hurt your neck. Better off sitting on the bed," he said.


But, I did.

Anyway, I don't have to go into every detail in order for you to figure out what happened next. He started trying to kiss me and make out with me. At first, I tried to resist a little, but I just couldn't deal with the discomfort of putting him off, so at some point, I just decided to detach and let it happen.

"Do you have a condom?" I asked.

"Yes!" he exclaimed, running to get one.

I think I completely surprised him with my candid offer of sex. Why did I do it? I just didn't feel like making out with him anymore, nor did I feel like having to find a way to make my exit.

As Cherubino put it-- "With you, Hyde, you always choose to be miserable rather than be uncomfortable!"

The next thing I knew, there was some guy making a nauseatingly dreamy face on top of me, with Star Trek playing in the background. I didn't really want to be there. And I hadn't had sex with anyone except Narc since September, 2005. Ugh. What was I doing???

Afterwards, I tried to make an exit, but he kept pulling me back in and telling me that he wanted to do it again. He apologized over and over for finishing too fast.

"I haven't had sex in a month," he said.

I didn't care-- I was grateful for the fast finish. And besides, a guy should never apologize for his performance. It wasn't attractive.

I ended up staying a while longer.

"I wish you could spend the night just like this," he said, pulling me onto his chest.

I didn't like how slim he felt compared to Narc. I was starting to feel rotten.

When I finally got out of there, yanking on my jeans and making a hasty exit, my head was spinning. The guy was nice enough to give me cab fare, but it somehow felt even more gross to be handed a $20 bill on my way out the door. That's when I texted Narc.

My head is spinning. Everything is so fucked up right now, I said.

All I know is that I miss you and I still love you and I'm dumb for writing this text, but I don't care.

Anyway, that was that. He texted me the next day, but I never wrote back. I decided to let that one go.

I had a fun weekend, in which I put it all out of my mind. On Friday night I went out with Jake and Shadkhen (and got free drinks all night, thanks to my low-cut shirt) and on Saturday night, I went out for dinner, drinks at Tao and dancing with the girls for Valentine's Day. Fun, fun, fun!

On Sunday morning, I met my friend Farb for brunch near Gramercy. While we were eating, the waiter came over with a note for me.

I would love to take you to dinner sometime. Perhaps even tonight? It read.

It was signed with a name and a phone number. Farb and I were a bit bewildered and didn't know from whom the note came. The waiter told us it was from the general manager of the restaurant next door and that he had been in the restaurant but had since left. Very weird-- why did he not come over himself or at least try to make eye contact with me? Farb asked the hostess to point him out to us if he came back. She said he was a nice guy, not sketchy, and when he came back in, she signaled to us.

He was really cute. I could only see him from across the room, but he looked sort of like Hugh Grant, with a lot of stubble. He was wearing a suit with an open collar and no tie.

"He's hot. You should call him," Farb concluded.

I agreed. But who does that kind of thing? Who calls random phone numbers passed to them by waiters?

Hyde-- that's who.

I was happy to be able to access my old Hyde free-spirit-ness without any drugs or alcohol in the mix. I sent him a text the next day.

Hi. You sent me your phone number via the waiter at brunch yesterday morning. I have to ask why you didn't come over and say hello yourself. :) --Hyde

He wrote back pretty quickly:
I didn't want to be intrusive. Would you like to meet later on for a coffee? Around 7?

Anyway, we went back and forth for a while, making a plan. I wrote again:

Ok. So-- Irving & 17th at 9-ish? How will I know you? Or will you just recognize me?

I'll recognize you. How can I forget? came his reply.

So, I got dressed and headed out. (Before I left, I stopped by to say hi to NDN and Tamika. She was having some drama about having cancelled for a friend's bachelorette party.)

I got to the coffee shop first and sat on a bench outside, smoking a cigarette. A charming guy approached. I kind of knew it was him, but played it as if I didn't.

"Do you have a light...Hyde?" he asked.

This guy was definitely a slickster. He had a bad boy vibe, and I couldn't help but be attracted to that.

It turns out that he is 33 and is from Tel Aviv. He was a bartender there and followed a girlfriend to NY three years ago, although they've been broken up for a year and a half. (When he asked me about my last relationship, I tried to skirt the issue, and only said that I was coming out of one). He is also a short story writer and has started taking a class in screenwriting. (Yeah-- I know). We had really great conversation chemistry, talking about everything from the metaphysics of history to religion, philosophy, travel and food. He is really into food and wine (two things I can't really partake of) and was going on about the sensual nature of food that has been crafted with intention.

He tried to extend the date a little, but I had to be up early to teach and was scared I would end up giving a repeat performance of the Thursday night debacle. So, instead, we shared a cab and he dropped me on my corner. Before I had a chance to make it to my front door, he had written me a text:

I enjoyed your company, Hyde. Have sweet dreams. I would like to see you again soon.

I didn't answer his text.

The next day I got another text from him:

Hyde, I'm going to leave the next meeting in your hands. I know it is hard to get used to others. Ciao beautiful.

I wasn't sure what to make of that. Why is he leaving it in my hands? Didn't he leave it in my hands to call him in the first place? I like when guys take charge, so I was a little annoyed. I waited a day before writing back:

Well, this week is turning out to be pretty busy but maybe dinner or a drink next week... I enjoyed our meeting on Monday.

His response:
Hi Hyde. I had a good time. Wish it could be longer... I can make myself available in the beginning of next week.

So-- that's that. We'll see if anything comes of it. In the meantime, I have a possible date tonight, picked out of the deluge of improbable matches coming through the online profile. Some 40 year old guy wants to take me to the Met Museum. We still have to work out the logistics.

Bottom line-- no one can accuse me of not putting myself out there.

And that's Hyde "on dating."


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

On Narc

So much has been happening that I think it's time to blog about some of it-- and I can only think of it in three broad categories, "On Narc," "On Dating," and "On Cherubino." And I guess I'll have to do it in installments because there's so damn much to say!!

So... here I go.


I will try very, very hard to make a long story short.

Last April, I tried to break it off with him. After all of the torture I went through, staying with him while he was traipsing around with PopStarChick, I knew that I couldn't put myself through that again-- sticking around while he was with another woman. When he started hanging out with LA-Girl, I was ready to be done. Well, it's obvious that I didn't want to be done, but I just couldn't survive it emotionally. Rather than allowing the break-up to happen, we both talked ourselves in circles until he agreed to be monogamous with me, but not to be my official "boyfriend" in title. I thought that it could and would be enough. We had one other bad night-- around the time of his birthday in May and I told him that it was over between us, yet again. But by the end of May and the start of June, I had buckled and allowed the status quo to return.

Over the next several months, Narc and I grew closer and closer. When he got sick this past summer with another blood clot, he stopped going out and drinking as much, and we started spending more "down time" together. There were no other women in his orbit and I was with him 5-6 and sometimes 7 nights a week.

Around Halloween he even acknowledged that he might have a problem with his drinking and that he wanted to change his life.

Then he backed away from that idea and started having more and more "boys nights" out with his latest crew. I had the nauseating feeling that he was trying to pick up girls on those nights out, and the suspicion and fear was hard to deal with.

In November it became more and more clear that my suspicions were based in reality and I had to confirm them. I saw that he texted some girl "Next time I'll have to take you on a proper date." There were other confirmations as well. It made me feel sick to my stomach (especially as that incident happened while I was on Long Island having surgery!) and I started to throw up more and more often from anxiety, but I tried my best to ignore it and not rock the boat.

I was anxious about my birthday and about whether or not he would come to my party, buy me a present, or anything else. It turns out that he did come to my party even though all of my AA people were there along with my mom and BigSis. Narc brought two of his friends and didn't really talk to many other people. Even though I wasn't serving alcohol, he and his friends had some sort of stash and were drinking. They left the party mid-way to go to a bar and Narc and I got in a fight about it. I told him I didn't want him to leave. Later that night, he came back to my place (at around 2:00 AM) and the party had already wound down. He was drunk and we had a fight in which he insisted that he's "not my boyfriend" so he had "no obligation to stay." I told him that if he wasn't my boyfriend, we had to stop acting like he was. He insisted that all of my friends were rude to him. (They weren't). I told him that he was just being paranoid that they don't like him because they know how he has hurt me.

"You make your bed, you lie in it," I said.

He was angry at me, but we ended up erasing it all with awesome sex.

On my actual birthday, we had a beautiful night. He took me out to the Russian Tea Room, bought me a beautiful present and I felt happier with him than ever before. We had amazing sex that night too.

So... it was all a little confusing, to say the least.

I was very anxious about going to Long Island to have my next few surgeries in December because I was afraid that while I was gone he would pursue other women. The anxiety was horrible and mostly manifested itself through terrible nausea and a feeling that I would call "paranoia," except that it was too much based in fact for it to be true-paranoia.

Narc and I had tickets to go see John Edward, the psychic, but once I had my surgery scheduled I could no longer go. We were together up until the very night before my surgery, but I was convinced that he would try to take some other woman to that event. After my surgery I was horribly depressed. The combination of anaesthesia, morphine and percocet in my system, mixed with my anxiety was too much for me to bear. I was trying to get to the computer to see if he posted a craigslist ad even though I could barely sit up and move, let alone shower myself or get to the bathroom. It was really just sick, sick, sick. My brain was in a fog and I couldn't stop crying. As a testament to my utter exhaustion and vulnerability, I even opened up to my mom about this-- something that I never thought I would do.

"Why are you doing this to yourself, sweetie?" she asked. "You are supposed to be healing your body right now. You are supposed to be taking care of yourself. This is a happy and exciting moment. Why are you toxifying your life with this kind of fear and pain? It's just not necessary!"

For some reason, even though I've heard that a million times before and from a million other people, I actually heard her. I had one of those "moments of clarity." Why WAS I putting myself through all that? I decided that I had to get help and that I'd probably have to end it.

In the meantime, I could barely get hold of Narc via text for a few days. Then, we finally spoke and he was very sweet. He texted me all sorts of loving messages. "We'll be together again soon, darling," he said. He told me how much he missed me.

On Christmas Eve I was determined to get a present to him. No one else had bought him a present for Christmas and he had no plans for the evening-- a "Christmas Orphan" once again, as he likes to say. It was hard to find a service that would deliver on Christmas Eve-- harder still because I was so incapacitated. Narc had talked about wanting to make a gingerbread house together and I found a place that brought him a gingerbread house kit and a giant Hershey's kiss. It was the best I could do.

Later that night on the way to my aunt's house, I sent him a text. (I don't still have all of these texts saved, so these are approximations).

Did you get any surprises tonight? I asked.

Narc: There was a package at the door, he said, But I didn't pick it up from the doorman yet. Was that from you?

Hyde: Maybe it was from Santa. What are you up to tonight? Merry Xmas!

Narc: Just coming back from drinks with Scott. Merry Christmas to you too, hon.

About ten minutes later, he wrote again: A gingerbread house kit! I love it!

Hyde: A kit and a kiss. Love you.

I texted him again later that night, but he didn't answer. I texted him once more before bed, still no answer. I was a little anxious about it, but decided to let my psyche rest. After all, it was Christmas. And I was trying to heal.

Over the course of the next few days, Narc wrote several times to tell me that he couldn't wait to see me. I was originally supposed to be back in the city on the 26th but decided to push it off until the 27th because I wasn't entirely self-sufficient. On the day I returned, he rushed up to midtown to meet me in my apartment that afternoon. We went out for Ethiopian food for dinner. We were inseparable for the next two or three days.

However, all was not well. The amazing sex seemed to have dissipated. He wouldn't kiss me during sex. I kept trying, but he wouldn't. It really confused me. And get this-- remember that back in November he texted some woman "Next time I'll take you on a proper date"? Well, I saw that he had, indeed, invited that woman to go see the John Edward show with him. She couldn't make it because she was in France. He tried to set up a date with her upon her return. His texts were very flirty.

Can't wait to see you darling. Kiss kiss, he wrote.

Ugh. I felt sick, but did nothing.

On Tuesday, December 30th I went down to see Narc after my regular AA meeting. He was finishing up some part of a video game. We had plans to catch that Vampire movie at the Angelika-- "Let the Right One In." I went into his bedroom to check my email while he was finishing.

Narc's computer opens the Internet browser to his yahoo account as a home page. He was logged in to his email. I had no intention of looking at anything, but I glanced at the page as I was typing in my gmail address. There were four or five messages in a row from someone named "Mona." My stomach turned. I knew right away that something was wrong. I decided to look.

I didn't have to look long or even very carefully to figure out what this was about. Narc had met up with this woman via Craigslist on Christmas Eve. They met for drinks at Cercle Rouge.

"I'm sorry we didn't get you up in time with the alarm!" he wrote to her. "Too bad you were late to meet your family on Christmas."

So-- she slept there. I literally thought I was going to die. I went into the bathroom and started to throw up. When I came out, he asked if I was okay.

"No." I said.

I just stood there, the lights pounding in my head. I could feel my heart thudding. It was like everything was in slow motion.

"Narc-- are you seeing other women?" I asked.

It felt like the voice that asked that was coming from somewhere far outside of my body.

"Of course not," he said. "Why would you ask me that?"

He continued to vehemently deny it, insisting that I was just creating drama because I'm a drama queen and because I had just come from my AA meeting.

I can't and won't attempt to reconstruct that whole conversation. The bottom line is that he denied any wrong-doing. I didn't want to tell him I saw those emails, so I simply said that whether or not he had been seeing other women, I felt like he was, I felt degraded and rejected in our relationship and that I couldn't go on seeing him on a daily basis, sleeping with him, saying "I love you," and not being his girlfriend. I was also concerned about his New Year's plans. He was going out with "the boys." I wanted to be with him. I wanted to share a New Year's Kiss. But most of all, I was just worried about him trying to meet someone else. He said all sorts of terrible things. I pointed out that he stopped kissing me during sex since my surgery. Then he told me that I couldn't be his girlfriend because he didn't feel chemistry with me. That confused the hell out of me. The only thing we have ever consistently had is sexual chemistry. When I challenged him, he said that he used to feel chemistry for me, but not since he stopped drinking. (Do I need to point out that he never stopped drinking? I pointed it out to him.)

"Well, from when I switched from hard liquor to beer."

"You're telling me that we can't be together because once you laid of whiskey you don't want me anymore? What do you even like about me?!"

He wouldn't answer.

"Why am I even here, Narc? Name one thing you like about me!"

"I'm not going to play these games with you, Hyde."

"What games?! Name one thing!"

He wouldn't.

I was hysterical in tears.

"We're going to miss the movie," he said. "Do you still want to go?"

"Um... okay."

So, I pulled myself together and we went to the movie. I cried through most of it. Afterwards we went back to his apartment. I sat on the couch crying and eating Brazil nuts.

"Is this how it's going to be all night?" he asked.


"You sitting here and weeping?"

"Um... I don't know."

" 'Cause if it is, it's not going to work for me."

"Are you kicking me out? You can't kick me out!"

I promised to go to bed and to try to stop crying. He said he was going to stay in the living room and read. I climbed into his bed by myself. I couldn't stop crying. I heard him at the door. I thought he might say something comforting, but he didn't. Instead he closed the door tightly so he wouldn't have to hear me.

I think we clung to each other in our sleep that night.

The next morning, I woke up with all of this sitting in a lump in my throat. I told him that I couldn't let it go. The conversation and the pain started up all over again.

"The only reason we're not together in that way, Hyde, is because you want to have a family and I don't."

"That's the dumbest thing I ever heard," I said.

"Really-- I can't have a girlfriend with whom I know there's no future. That's why you're not my girlfriend."

The conversation went on in some circles.

"You've told me time and again that I'm not your girlfriend and I should stop acting like I am."


"Well, I think I finally hear you. I'm going to stop acting like I am. I'm going to stop seeing you, sleeping with you, practically living with you, supporting you, telling you I love you."

"Hyde, that's not what I meant."

"The bottom line is that I finally hear you!!! I get it. I can't do this on these terms anymore. I love you, but it hurts too much and it's destroying me. We have to say goodbye."

I left in tears.

It was New Year's Eve. That afternoon I went to see B in the hospital. His daughter had been born the day before. For the rest of the evening I cried.

Meema came over to drag me out for some New Year's Eve festivities. I wore a hot red-dress and got tons of attention. Everyone stared at my brand new breasts and some guy told me I had on the hottest dress at the party. I felt numb though. And it was hard to dance, given my recent surgeries.

I came home that night and went to bed around 3:30 AM.

When I woke up in the morning, I had several missed calls from Narc. It turns out that he came by my building at around 5:00 AM. Obviously, he was drunk, and the doorman wouldn't let him in. I called him back and left him a message telling him that I hoped he had gotten home safely.

Later that night, I missed a flurry of text messages and phone calls from him. I was hanging out with NDN and Tamika and didn't have my phone on me. These text messages I actually did save (at least the ones he sent. I don't have my "replies.")

9:14 PM: Can we talk at some point tonight? I don't want to see anyone else, and I don't want to live a life without you.

9:51: Can I at least come up so we can talk for a little bit? I don't have to stay if you don't want me to.

10:11: Darling, please let me come by tonight. I love you and I don't want it to be like this.

10:26: I don't want to reject you, I just don't know where we can go together if you want a family in a few years and I don't know if I can do that.

10:27: If it wasn't for that, you know I'd want you as my girlfriend in name and all.

10:29: Can I at least come by so we can talk?

10:33: There's a lot I want to say that I didn't get to say yesterday. Please, I don't want us to be apart. I don't want to see anyone else. There must be something we can work out.

10:36: If I said I wanted to be your boyfriend and you to be my girlfriend, would that change anything?

(To which I said something like- it would have meant everything- respect, etc. But it's too late-- there's no trust).

10:42: What do you mean no trust? I've never been anything but completely honest with you.

10:45: I don't want to be with anyone else, but at the same time I don't know how I can make you happy without committing to a family.

(To which I said something like: The Dominican Republic Girl, UN Chick, Exhibitionist, PopStar, Laurie, LA-Girl, etc. Clearly you are "just not that into me.")

10:47: What are you talking about, Hyde?? I spend ALL of my time with you!! And have for years!! How could I not want and love you?

10:51: The only woman I dated since having met you was PopStar, nothing happened with any of the others. And we were not exclusive then at any rate.

10:52: Jesus, all I did last night was talk about how much I missed you and wished you were out with us.

10:57: Well, part of what I wanted to say is that I think you're the most amazing woman I've ever met. I'm sorry I couldn't tell you that yesterday. I guess I was just flustered.

11:02: And also, I love you more than I've ever loved anyone in my life.

11:05: Can't we at least talk about all of this a little bit?

Anyway, we did end up finally speaking on the phone. I was sitting on NDN's couch. He kept writing me encouraging messages like "Be Strong!!!" And "Don't forget about MONA!!!"

I said everything I wanted to say and I really stuck up for myself, but the fact that I was bothering to have the conversation at all meant that a part of me still believed in salvaging something. And hasn't it been proven unsalvageable at this point??? He kept turning the conversation to this issue of having kids and having a family and saying that we want different things. I was having trouble remembering that this all started with him cheating on me. I asked him about that text "Next time I'll take you on a proper date." He said it was sent to his friend Monica-- that she had a bad internet date and he was trying to cheer her up. It was a nice try, but I knew for a fact it was a lie. I couldn't tell him that though.

In any case, we talked for hours and got nowhere. We both went to bed that night alone and exhausted.

After that I didn't see him for a few days and it was painful. He tried to inititate a meeting, but I refused. Then, by the end of the week I buckled. I called him and asked to see him. We made a plan for me to go down to his place and we were going to cook dinner. I hopped into a cab with groceries.

"I'm still at Forge," he said. "Meet me here."

I was expecting to arrive at the restaurant to find him paying his bill or something. Instead, he was sitting at the bar, drinking Jack Daniels, and chatting with two of his friends. He barely looked up to say hello to me (despite my pounding heart) and I couldn't drag him out of there until after 10:00 PM. I was angry. He made up some lame excuse about bad timing and having to catch up with his friends, but none of it made any sense. How could he treat me like that after everything we had just been through?

Back at his place he became loving and attentive, trying to make out with my while I was cooking, and kissing me deeply and passionately. I let myself go-- I just gave in to it all, but it was still pretty damn confusing. In my mind, it had to be a one-night deal.

The next day (Monday, January 5th), he called to see if he could come over after his Tarot class.

"No, Narc. We can't do this," I said. "I am not your girlfriend so I'm not going to act like I am. You can't have it both ways."

"So, if you were my 'girlfriend,' I could see you? We could be together? It would really change that much for you?"


(Did I mean that? I didn't know anymore.)

"Okay," he said.

"Okay, what?"

"Let's try it."

"Being boyfriend and girlfriend? Really?"

(I knew how dumb this was, even as it was happening, but I let it happen.)

"I can't be without you, so let's try."

I agreed. And I set out to meet him at "The Perfect Pint," a new pub in the neighborhood.

Over the course of the next week, things got worse. Narc started to ignore me. He had two "boys nights" in a row. On the first (that Thursday), he didn't return my texts and I felt sick in the pit of my stomach. On Friday, January 9th I went to see a Professional Bull Riding rodeo event at Madison Square Garden with NDN, Tamika and their friends. I asked Narc if he wanted to join up afterwards.

"Only if Mike can't hang out," he said.

I felt awful being relegated to second place and we got in a fight on the phone. Things were not going well.

Still, I swallowed it down and hoped for the best.

Another week went by.

I saw that Narc had texted Mona, the Christmas Eve girl, and invited her out on that Thursday evening boy's night. I felt sick and betrayed, but said nothing.

Finally, on Friday, January 16th, the shit hit the fan. It was a freezing cold day that day-- 14-degrees before the wind chill. I was teaching up in the Bronx in the morning. When I got out, Narc had sent me a text.

"Come cuddle!" he wrote.

I went down to see him. He was blood-shot and woozy and hung-over. We had amazing sex all afternoon though and watched "My So-Called Life."

At some point he got a text message.

"Oh, that's from Scott," he said.

I thought it was strange that he bothered to announce who it was from.

Then the smoke alarm in someone else's apartment went off. Narc left me laying out the Thai take-out while he went to tell the front desk. I looked at his cell phone while he was gone. The text had been from the Exhibitionist.

Are you seeing anyone these days? she wrote.

Nope. Pure as a monk! he answered.

Do you want to be seeing anyone?

If the right woman were to come along,
he answered.

I felt sick all over again. That same thudding in my ears. That same wave of nausea in my stomach and my limbs. He came back into the apartment.

"What's wrong?" he asked.

"What do you mean?"

"What's wrong with you?"


"Hyde-- something is wrong. What could possibly have happened in the two minutes I was gone?"

"Nothing! I'm just a moody girl, okay? Let's just eat."

He sat down on the couch. I drew my knees up to my chest. I was going to crack. I knew it... I knew it. I didn't want to tell him I had seen his phone because I knew he would turn it around and attack me. But I had no strength left-- there was nothing in me to try to make this work anymore.

"I saw your phone," I said. "I saw what you wrote to the Exhibitionist."

"You looked at my phone?"

"It fell."

"I don't think it fell. I think you looked at it."

"That's not the point. I saw what you wrote."

He claimed that he was being "sarcastic."

"That's bullshit I said."

"You know what, Hyde! Get out. This is the reason I broke up with Natalie. I never thought YOU would turn out to be such an untrustworthy bitch!!! Get dressed and get out!"

"My pleasure!" I shot back.

I started to get dressed.

"You know what, Narc? You're a fucking liar! You're a liar and a cheater and you spend your whole life playing the vicitm. If you're alone it's because you make it that way! You choose to be alone. You make it fucking impossible for anyone to love you!"

"What else do you want to see in here? What else, Hyde!" he said, scrolling through his iPhone.

I walked over and peered over the text message list.

"Who's Mona?" I asked.

The texts were right there-- the ones I knew were about him inviting her out for boys night.

"Mona is Monica," he said. "That's just what I call my friend Monica sometimes."

"That's bullshit!" I laughed. "I'm not stupid. Do you really think I'm that much of an idiot?!"

He kept insisting.

"Fine. Show me that you don't have Mona and Monica both listed in your contact list, then!"

"I have her home phone and cell phone-- it's under two names," he said.

"You are such a fucking liar. And who's Anna??"

(There was some other text messasge to a girl named Anna.)

"Just a girl I met out with Mike who wanted me to read her Tarot. God damn it, Hyde! Aren't I allowed to meet people?"

"No! You're not allowed to go out to bars and pick up girls and read their Tarot."

"Mike was trying to hit on her, not me."


I turned away and continued getting dressed.

"I really, really love you Narc. I really do. You make it so fucking impossible though! I hope for your sake that Mona or Anna or whoever will love you a fraction as much because you drive everyone away. You must want to be alone."

"I don't want to be alone, Hyde."

He seemed vulnerable for a moment, but then changed his tone.

" You know what, Hyde? I wasn't cheating on you. I wasn't seeing anyone else. But now I will! Now I WILL!"

"I-DON'T-FUCKING-CARE!!! See who you want, Narc! It's over between us! Dead! OVER!!!"

I was standing at the door now, fully bundled up in my wintercoat, layers of tights and scarveas and my snuggly winter hat with the pom-pom on top.

"WHO THE FUCK IS MONA!?!?!??!" I screamed, at full volume. "STOP LYING TO ME!!!!!"

I think I must have startled him, because he changed his tone. I kind of startled myself.

"Fine, fine," he said, sort of flustered. "Mona isn't Monica. She's some girl I met months and months ago at The Auction House. She just got in touch with me and asked me to do a reading for her. I didn't want to say because I knew you'd be upset."

"You're a liar," I said calmly.

"I'm not lying."

"So... if I come over there and look at your phone it'll be all about Tarot?"


"Let me see."


He pulled the phone back closer to him.

"Fucking, liar," I said.

He then tapped the screen of the phone as if he would show me after all. I walked over to the couch and peered over at it.

"Gone, gone, gone!" he said, tapping each text conversation and erasing it.

"Gone? Well, then I'm gone too!"

I stormed back over to the door.

"Don't call me!" I shouted.

"That won't be a problem."

Those are the last words I heard him speak.

So... A month went by. A freakin' impossibly hard month. I've been counting one-day-at-a-time. I've been crying. I've been working. I've been living my life. I decided to start dating. I've been trying to re-group. I've been spending time with good friends. The night after the break-up, NDN and Tamika took me to Atlantic City wtih them. I've been trying not to look back.

But I miss him like hell and it hurts like hell. Last week I had sex with someone else (a story that I will tell you all about in my post "on dating") and it fucked with my head. I sent Narc a text right after.

My head is spinning. Everything is so fucked up right now, I said. All I know is that I miss you and I still love you and I'm dumb for writing this text, but I don't care.

Four days later (on this past Sunday), he wrote to me.

I know. I miss you too. Don't know what else to say.

I wrote back:
I love you so the bottom of my heart. So much. And whether or not we can be together or friends or whatever, I will always, always love you. I hope that someday we can at least be in touch and that I don't have to lose you forever.

Narc: I love you too. I don't want you to not be in my life.

Hyde: I'm so glad you wrote. To know that I'm not alone right now in all of these feelings. What we were wasn't working. I don't know what we can be to each other. But I say good night to yo before I close my eyes. So just know that for now. I don't know what else to do either.

Narc: I thought it could have worked, but I guess we didn't do it right. Still, that doesn't mean that we can't know each other, love each other as friends perhaps.

And no-- you're not alone in your feelings.

Anyway, another day or two went by. He sent me some innocuous text about Kiefer on "24." I answered just as innocuously. Then, last night just as NDN, Tamika and I were wrapping up our American Idol night, he wrote again:

Narc: Just getting home now, take it you already watched 'Idol'? Was going to see if you wanted to come down to watch it.

Hyde: Yeah, we can't do that anymore.

Narc: Hyde, I wasn't inviting you down for sex, which I'm not up for at any rate, but just to watch 'Idol.' If you've already seen it then no worries, perhaps we'll get together some other time.

I couldn't think of anything to say to that, so I didn't answer. Then, right before bed, I felt anxious, so I called him. I haven't heard his voice since that day in January. He didn't pick up, so I left a message.

"Just thought it would be better to talk in person," I said. "I don't know why I'm calling. It's probably too soon. Didn't mean to upset you with my text. Just trying to figure this all out. Anyway, have a good night..."

I was surprised when he wrote back:
Don't really have the energy to talk on the phone right now, really just want to zone out, watch 'Idol," go to bed. Can talk soon.

Hyde: Ok. Have a good night. Maybe it's too soon anyway. Be happy & healthy. And enjoy Idol.

Then I was really surprised with what came next--

Narc: I'm fine with the amount of time that has passed, or hasn't passed, but because you are the woman and make all of the decisions, we are of course at your discretion when it comes to whenever you feel like hanging out again. So maybe we can leave it at: you can figure that out and let me know when you like.

By the way, didn't mean that to sound harsh, or difficult, just too tired to talk and feeling like a passive player in your self-scripted drama isn't helping. Feel like we'd just get into an argument if we talked now, when really, I just want to watch "Idol"... At any rate, sure you're in bed now, sweet dreams. Maybe we'll talk soon.

So, I responded...

Hyde: I'm sorry you feel like a passive player. I have no script. Just want two opposing things at once-- to see you b/c I love you AND to move on b/c it hurt and it wasn't working. I will try to stay away until I have had time to fully move on emotionally. I don't want to make you upset or uncomfortable or feel jerked around. So-- I apologize for that. I'm doing my best. Sweet dreams to you too.

Narc: I know, I want to see you too. Sleeping alone is no fun. But again, you're in the driver's seat (or "driving the cattle" etc as Dr. Phil might say), so you'll have to let me know what you want to do eventually etc., about perhaps being friends and all the rest of it. Anyway, off to bed...

Hyde: You drive your cattle and I'll drive mine. I do miss you and love you. But I want to be healthy and whole and I wish that for you too. Good night. I'm sad that you're lonely tonight. xo.

Today he sent me some dumb email about a list on and also a text about the possibility of Kim Raver and Kirstin Davis being cast in a script he hasn't written yet. It's raining out and I have to go teach a class in Brooklyn tonight.

There is so, so, so much else going on-- my recent dates, the emotional upheaval with Cherubino, etc. But that's the Narc story. I feel like I did my duty by blogging it. So much of this blog has been my relationship with him, that I felt unsettled not keeping it up to date.

I want so badly to be healthy and to not get sucked back in. But the fear and anxiety I feel when the tie with him is cut is almost as terrifying as the pain when I'm with him.


Anyway, hope you are all well. I'm doing better than this post has surely made it seem!!!

lots of love,