1993

Beau and I live with Nana. We split her mortgage and all the bills 50/50. Beau and I share a room.

I haven’t seen or heard from Luke. I know he’s around because Beau tells me that he sees his dad across the street from his school all the time. This breaks my heart. The one thing I promised myself is that my kids would always have their dad around. I feel like a failure.

Beau is 5 years old now. 13 more years until he is 18. I don’t want to be alone for the next 13 years but I don’t want to rush Beau into growing up. I love being his mom and I love watching him grow.

I spend six months just being a mom to Beau and after he goes to bed I go out with friends. Austin is seriously dating Hannah now so I haven’t talked to Austin in a while. I have no desire to hang out with Hannah.

I’m still at the insurance company. There is a guy there, Jeff, that I am friends with. I think he’s good-looking. He’s really shy but he has his life together. He is almost 30, never been married and owns a condo. I know he has a crush on me.

We have been going out to the movies and hanging out but he hasn’t tried to kiss me. I have never been shy. Sometimes people think I’m shy when they first meet me but it’s not shyness. I’m a very private person. I’m not going to open up to anyone until I really get to know them.

When Jeff and I go out, we meet up and leave my car at work and usually take his truck.

We went out to the movies again and he drives me back to work so I can get my car. He pulls up next to my car and I know he wants to kiss me but he just never does. I can see him struggling. I don’t realize until years later that sometimes I just push my way thru life thinking everyone feels like I feel. I decide for everyone. I am either charging thru life telling everyone what to do, or I don’t care about the situation so I don’t do anything at all. Tonight, I’m charging thru. Someone has too, right?

It’s not that I like being bossy, I just tend to surround myself with people who need bossing around. I’m a decision maker. Sometimes I make bad decisions, but hey, at least I make decisions. I’m impulsive sometimes, but I always deal with the consequences on my own. I don’t rely on any one but myself.

So Jeff not taking control is making me crazy. Alabama at her finest, taking charge and making decisions.

I ask Jeff “Are you ever going to kiss me?”. He is shocked and just chuckles. So I kiss him. He kisses me back. It’s nice. He’s sweet.

Then I tell him what’s going to happen because that’s what I do. I tell him that we can never be serious because I have Beau and he can’t ever meet him. There will be no I love you’s, ever. I tell him that we can be boyfriend and girlfriend and we will sleep together and if he decides to sleep with someone else that’s fine, he just has to break up with me first. And he says ok.

It’s nice being with someone who has their shit together. When he tells me he is going to do something, he actually does it. And the sex is good. He is shy at first but gets over that, thank God. He is the third person I’ve slept with. I have never slept with anyone other than Luke, Austin and Jeff.

On New Years Eve we went to a club. On the way to the club, out of no where, he asks me “What would you do if Luke came back?”. That shocks me. We have never talked about Luke or Beau.

I tell him that I will let him see Beau, of course. Luke will always be Beau’s dad. He tells me that I shouldn’t do that and that pisses me off. He isn’t a parent and I have told him from day one that he wasn’t a part of that. He has no clue.

There is an awkwardness the rest of the night. We have never argued before. He is drinking and getting progressively drunker by the minute. A guy walks by and hits on me but he didn’t see Jeff standing there. When he did, he apologizes to Jeff and walks away. Jeff starts to get all macho like he is going to fight him and this is so not like him.

Looking back, I think he was trying to take control. I didn’t realize it until after Luke died but I take control and it makes people, men, I do this with men and it makes them feel unmanly. I emasculate them. I don’t mean too but I’ve never had a dad around so I just really don’t know what a man’s role is.

Jeff is really drunk so I stop drinking. They have a buffet so I get him food, hoping to sober him up. We are with our group of friends outside and at one point he falls, face first, into his scrambled eggs. I am embarrassed and irritated. We did the countdown and he kisses me and then I tell him I have to leave. I need to get out of here. What do I do to these men?

He walked me to my car and kissed me goodbye. And then he told me he loved me. My heart sunk. This could not be happening.

I don’t say anything back to him. I get in my car and leave. He calls me all day the next day but I won’t answer. I don’t know what to say to him.

I go to work the next day and try to act normal but it’s awkward. My birthday is in two weeks and we have already planned a weekend vacation. Now I’m not looking forward to it at all.

We have fun my birthday weekend but I can’t get over the “I love you” bomb. Now I am thinking about my future. Jeff loves me and I know we can’t ever go any farther in this relationship. I won’t have a step dad for Beau. So I know I have to end this. I do and I feel so bad. I still have to work with him.

I don’t want to be alone forever. I track Luke down and marry him three days later.

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