Monday, June 13, 2011
The Math Teacher: Part 5
After jolting from MT's bedroom like steam from a kettle, I might've thought about what that all meant if I didn't have to work a 10 hour day on a Sunday the following day. Hungover. Okay...really hungover. And then the 12 hour work days Monday through Thursday blurred together like one and the same until five days had gone by without even thinking about the Math Teacher. Or David either for that matter.
Then Thursday arrived and I was supposed to have dinner with him. He had texted at some point and suggested a little Middle Eastern place he'd been wanting to try and if I was up for it did I wanna go? I had said yes, but as the day arrived, I grew more and more tired. I was EXHAUSTED. I am ALWAYS exhausted it seems.
"I think I have to cancel for tonight," I told my co-worker Amber. "Not again!" she almost shouted at me. "You cannot cancel on him again." He will NEVER go out with you EVER again if you do this to him twice. It's not cool. It's not nice. Its....RUDE."
"I know, I know it is," I whimpered. "But I could barely keep my eyes awake in that meeting. And we have hours left to go in this day. I hate being this tired. I hate it. I really am this tired. I swear!"
Then I told my co-worker John about my plan. I needed a second opinion: "I'll just say I was stuck here. Stuck in a meeting. I couldn't leave. And say I feel really REALLY bad about it." "I mean, it doesn't really matter what you say," he replied. "It's obvious you just don't like the guy. Obvious to me. And it will be obvious to him."
But hearing those words. I realized it wasn't true. Because if I really didn't like the guy, I wouldn't be trying to think up the perfect excuse. I wouldn't be worried that he'd never go out with me again. I would assume that he would think and assume I didn't like him and stop asking me out and I'd stop going out with him and that would be that. But that's not how I felt. I felt REALLY, really, really conflicted. Conflicted between my complete and utter exhaustion and inability to do nothing and my desire to go spend time with him. I really did want to have dinner. So much so that I was still considering going - despite my growing weariness and hopelessness at life.
"If you're gonna bail, tell him now," Amber said. "It's not fair to him." "I know, I know, I know," I said. But what if I feel better later and change my mind?" Amber just looked at me. With that bitchy, no-nonsense, handle your business look of hers that said: "Tell him now. The end."
So I texted him. That I was stuck in a meeting and I was REALLY disappointed but I wouldn't be able to make dinner that night. But that I knew our friends were getting together for happy hour and then karaoke the next day (Friday) and that I was hoping he was going and that we could go together. Perhaps he could meet me at the metro near my office. I usually get off work between 7 and 8 but I would get off at 4 and we could get there before anyone else and spend some time together before the whole gang arrived. How did that sound?
He said it was really too bad about dinner. But he would meet me. And we would go together. "Thank you for understanding," I told him. But I could tell, he wasn't as patient and unaffected as he had been the last time.
I got off work at 8pm. I was too tired for the walking and the metro and the bus so I hailed a cab and paid the $15 to get home just a little bit sooner and without any effort. Just sitting there. Defeated. Downtrodden. Disjointed.
I did not stop Go. I did not collect dinner. Or a conversation with the roommates. I went directly to the bedroom and collapsed into the pillows - my own kind of heaven, but my own kind of jail. I couldn't escape my confused thoughts and my put-upon heart. I lay there, thinking "damn." "Damn, damn, damn, damn." "I should've gone to dinner....there's something about him..." And I was worried, for the first time - that I might lose him. This amazing guy who had grit. Who stayed. Who never faltered. Who let me be me. And liked me. And who was so good looking that no one would ever kick him out of bed for eating crackers. And I started to get the sinking feeling that I had ruined something that could be something - maybe even something good.
To be continued...