Tachibana

In the days leading up to it, I was more excited about Thursday evening than I had been for almost any other night.  Even compared to the trip that I took the previous weekend for Frostbite, Thursday night won out.  Why?  Because I was truly excited about where I was going, about who I was going there with, and about the experience we would have.

On Sunday, when I was coming home from Frostbite, I was talking with Sonya about picking me up, and how I wanted to repay her.  Her suggestion was that I take her out to dinner one night that week.  I gladly accepted this as compensation, both because it would be something she’d enjoy, and because I’d love doing that anyway.  Win/win situations aren’t the most common thing, but damn if they aren’t fantastic.

That same night, I had our destination in mind – Tachibana, the Japanese restaurant that we both love so much.  I weighed my potential courses for announcing this to her, and wondered, to an extent, what she would think or say about it.  It was a special place for the both of us – would she see any deeper meaning in it?  Should I even worry about that?  Eventually, I decided that my best course of action was going to be to simply ask her if she had any suggestions, or whether she wanted me to pick the place, and so I did on Wednesday morning.  When she found out what I had in mind, she seemed genuinely excited, and that only made me more so.  Thursday morning dawned with the hope of a wonderful evening, and so accordingly work took forever to finish.  I raced home, where we had agreed to meet.

Her outfit… oh, god, her outfit.  She looked amazing.  She wore a white flower-themed shirt atop a simple pair of jeans.  Black heels and flower earrings completed the look.  It was a fantastic outfit and I told her as such.  We left for Tachibana in high spirits, and the drive there seemed to fly by.  Parking was more of an issue than normal, and we had a brief scare when I tried to fit into a parking spot just barely large enough for the car.  I made it in alright, before Sonya convinced me that it wasn’t a good idea.  Backing out of that parking spot was terrifying for both of us, though she almost seemed to have a heart attack from it.  We got a “normal” parking space, however, and ventured inside.

Tachibana itself was as amazing as it always is.  We debated about trying new things, and eventually mixed it up a bit on appetizers, but we both ordered the “Special” sushi dinner.  I felt a bit embarrassed ordering the same thing as her, especially with wanting to be adventurous, but damn it, that was some good food.  We got age-dofu (fried tofu) and sawara miso yaki (broiled mackeral) as our appetizers, and they were both delicious.  Our sushi was fantastic, as it always is, minus the sea urchin roll.  I don’t think either of us really cared for it too much.  Our dinner was finished off with mochi ice cream, per tradition, and we got the white sesame (which, earlier in the night, I mistakenly called black peppercorn… kill me now) and green tea varieties.  The drive  back was a bit more quiet, but we did talk briefly about a trip to Japan.  Since it had come up, I had wondered if she’d still want to go with me.  She had told me that she would quite a long time ago, but I didn’t know how true it would hold, and I couldn’t think of a good roundabout way to ask her.  Finally I just did, and she said “maybe”… but she said maybe because she was considering her work schedule and plans, not because she didn’t want to.  That was enough for me.

She asked me, on the way home, if I’d like to play a round of Fortune Street before she left, and I enthusiastically agreed, as it had been a long time since I’d really gotten to play it.  The game went fine, though we both ran into some bad luck early on (her more than me) and we struggled through much of the game.  I ended up winning thanks to a lucky card draw at the very end of the game – if I hadn’t, I was going to give her the money to ensure that she would.  Letting a computer win would have been absolutely unacceptable.

The night was fantastic, and I enjoyed it a lot.  I’m glad that we can still enjoy each other’s company as much as we do.  I need to continue to enjoy the time I have with her while not longing for but so much more – I have to continue to focus on my own life before anything else.

As I told her that night, though, when I look into her eyes, I can’t help but be happy.  And then I can’t help but smile.  It’s literally an involuntary reaction.  That… scares me, a bit.

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Full Circle

About six hours until I fly out to Michigan.  I’m a little nervous, because I’m always a little nervous when I’m a.) flying, and b.) going to a bigger Smash event, but I think I’ve got an alright handle on it.  I’m packed (and I made a concerted effort to pack light for once) and have plenty of entertainment.  I have money for food, and my hotel room is set.  Really, the only thing that will be missing throughout the weekend will be regular human contact, since I’m staying in a room by myself.  That’s not a bad thing, necessarily, but it’s an interesting turn that somewhat mimics my home situation.

Cinnamon is leaving by the end of March, but for all intents and purposes, it’s almost like she’s already left, minus her stuff still being in the room.  For the past two weeks, she hasn’t spent a single night (that I’m aware of) at the house.  I don’t know where she’s been staying.  It’s really not my concern.  When I told her about wanting her to leave, she referenced that our friendship had become strained, which is somewhat accurate  – but now I find myself wondering if that’s really the case.

She mentioned that “it seemed like (I) didn’t want (her) around”.  She assumed that if we spent time together, I’d want to cuddle or do other physical things, despite conversations we’d had where we agreed that wouldn’t happen.  She flat out denied that she ignored people to focus on her boyfriend, even though it’s obvious to anyone who knows her.  To me, these aren’t real claims.  They’re excuses that she’s making to herself to convince herself that this isn’t her fault.  If she can spread the blame to someone else, she can delude herself into thinking that her way of life isn’t inherently flawed (hint: it is) and that she can just keep what she’s doing and not grow up and be an adult (hint: she can’t).

What’s most telling to me, though, is that I’m able to recognize this for what it is.  In years past, I likely would have not only accepted the blame for the split, but actively put it on myself, wondering what I could have done better.  But that isn’t the case here.  I can objectively recognize that she was willingly using me, as much as she could, and that once I realized it I was justified in ending it.  That’s the entire story – really, the entire story of our “friendship”.  She freely admits to using people as much as she can to get what she needs.  Why would I be any different?  It’d be stupid to believe that I’d be some magical exception, but the sad part is that for a while, I did.  Wizard’s First Rule, again – people will believe anything, either because they fear it to be true, or wish it to be true.  But I woke up, and now I’m kicking her out and I’m really happy about it.

Isolation?  So be it.  I’ll live alone again, but I won’t look at it as a bad thing.  I’ll look at it as the best correction to a flawed situation and make the most of it.  I think that’s the best course of action that I can take right now.

Also coming full circle is a situation involving Sonya.  It’s one that inevitably comes to mind whenever I fly, and it came up again recently, but this time there’s a twist.  One of my fondest early memories of her is a week when she took a trip up to New Hampshire to visit family.  We were out of touch for a week, and I wrote small things to her every day, because I missed her.  Somewhat on a whim, I made plans to pick her up from the airport, and despite several pitfalls I did just that.  Her excitement and happiness at seeing me in the airport terminal, combined with the joy and love in the hug we shared, is etched into my very soul.

This became somewhat of a bittersweet thing after we broke up, because every time I landed at Dulles and exited into the terminal, the memory would play in my head, clear as day, bringing with it a wave of conflicting emotions.  This time will likely be similar, but it may not be as bad this time around.  An idle comment that I left her yesterday led to a conversation this morning, and has resolved into the determination that she will dtop me off at the airport today, and pick me back up on Sunday.  I’m grateful for this, because it will save me a fair bit of money, but there’s more to it than that.  I feel like we’re getting back to the point where we can talk and be friends again, and I’ve missed that terribly.  Having that small portion of happiness back will almost certainly dull the edge of the memory I cherish.  I’m hopeful.

There’s work to be done, but I have no motivation to do it.  I’d love to take a nap, but in lieu of that, I’ll sip on my water and push through the day.  Only two and a half hours of work left, until I see Sonya and get on my way.  I can’t wait.

Roommate

Today, I sent my roommate a message informing them, in the nicest way that I could come up with, that things simply weren’t working and they needed to find a new place to live.  Their response?  It came as something along the lines of “Yeah, you’re right, you don’t want me around”.  We went back and forth a bit with this.  I brought up examples and tried to show her that yes, I did want her around, but she seemed to have no interest in doing anything other than smoking pot and being with her boyfriend.  She brought up that I seemed to not enjoy being around her as much, and didn’t talk to her as much.  … Well, yeah.  Because she didn’t seem to really care about me any longer – she only had room in her life for her boyfriend.

Whatever.  It’s done.  In a month, I’ll be living alone again, and truthfully, I’m really happy for it.  Living alone means that:

  • I won’t come home to a counter and sink full of dirty dishes unless I’m the one who created them
  • I won’t come home to a trash can overflowing with trash because someone’s too lazy to take it out and put in a fresh bag
  • I won’t have ants invading the house IN WINTER because people have left food out in their bedroom
  • Along those lines, I won’t have a refrigerator full of half-eaten meals that are never touched again and left to spoil
  • I won’t have recycling thrown in with the trash because someone’s too lazy to sort it properly
  • I won’t have the ENTIRE HOUSE reeking of weed because my roommate is a pothead who smokes all day
  • I won’t have an electric bill that’s almost double what it typically is because my roommate:
    • a.) Turns the heat in their room up and leaves the window open to vent smoke from smoking weed
    • b.) Leaves TV’s, computers, etc. on all day because they start something, walk away, and never come back
    • c.) Runs the shower for no apparent reason at random times of the day
  • I can do what I want during the days and nights without stressing.  If I want to put together a puzzle, I don’t have to worry that I’m making my roommate think I don’t want to spend time with them (because they apparently do)
  • I don’t have to worry about viruses and worms being downloaded onto my computer because someone wants to pirate software and movies
  • I can wear whatever the hell I want around the house without worrying about being judged or feeling self-conscious
  • I can talk to who I want, invite over who I want, without feeling like I’m imposing (especially my ex, who… well, that’s a whole different thing)

I think this is going to be good.  I’m really excited for it.  I would love to live with someone that I can get along with, that understands and accepts me, but more of all, is a human capable of taking care of themselves.  She isn’t.  What’s more, she forms opinions about things that she has no information on, which… okay, whatever, but then attacking someone on the basis of those opinions?  That’s just dumb.  That’s the biggest reason that I haven’t had contact with someone I care about – and it’s a stupid reason, and I’m already mad at myself for not realizing that reason sooner, but now that reason will be gone.

This was cathartic to write.  All of the anger and frustration and irritation that’s built up over the past few months is much more tolerable now.  I should do this more often.