I have been enjoying the company of a very special male this week. He's affectionate, attentive, playful, and a great cuddler. He shows boundless joy when he sees me and is despondent when we have to part ways. He has also been waking me up at ungodly hours and is responsible for my current weary, sleep-deprived state.
In other words, I'm dog-sitting. Luckily, I'm looking after one of the most lovable pooches on the planet. This is why I can forgive being woken up at 7:30am on a Saturday. It's why I have tolerated extra commutes to come home, walk the dog, and take the subway back out into the city for my evening plans. It's why I didn't even get too upset when I came home the other night and found the garbage can overturned, trash strewn on the kitchen floor, and a puddle of leftover Chinese food vomit in the living room.
I knew a dog was a lot of responsibility, but this is the first time I have taken care of one on my own. It has surprised me just how much of a dent it has made on my schedule and lifestyle. Saturday night, I walked him before and after (we're talking 3:00am) I went out, in the hopes that I would get to sleep in, and was still woken up early (though he was kind enough to wait until 9:00am). And there's nothing like navigating snowy/icy streets in the bitter cold, waiting for a dog to do its business.
At the same time, it has been such a pleasure having him around. I find myself not wanting to go out as much (though I've had to because of a number of social obligations) and feeling a bit guilty when I do. I have this crazy, protective love for the dog, because he is so dependant on me to take care of his basic needs and loves me back, unconditionally. It's also a bit intimidating.
This week made me realize just how much I enjoy my independence. Some day, I'd like to have the full package (husband, dog, child), but can't imagine it being any time soon.
I wonder if I'm developing some committment issues. The idea of being responsible for a living being is terribly daunting to me at the moment, especially in the romantic sense. I can't even deal with being instrumental in providing for a dog's happiness, to say nothing a human being's. Obviously, I should remove the word "date" from my vocabulary for the foreseeable future. Whenever I have started feeling a bit emotionally open in recent times, it has spooked me, made me want to go away. If that doesn't say "not ready" I don't know what does.
Still, I've crossed paths with a few interesting men recently and want to keep an open mind. I might even have a date this weekend.
Maybe it's easier to focus on a romantic illusion. Yes, Barman Ben. Yes, he is still haunting me. Not as much, but enough.
Ben still hasn't sent out the email about his play, but it's now running. I want to see it, but cannot just turn up, because I'm not supposed to know about it yet. Whenever I think about him, I feel something tightening within me, a ghost pain, a terrible sense of longing. How did a smart woman like me get hung up on somebody so perfectly wrong for me, so unattainable? I try distracting myself with a myriad of activities, but the only thing that helps, that makes me truly forget him, is flirting and going out with other men. It's like having some kind of emotional virus. I wish I could get Ben out of my system once and for all. I thought I did, but had a bit of a relapse in recent days.
I'm looking forward to this upcoming three-day weekend. I need to spend some time on my own, shake off some of this confusion, and (maybe most importantly) sleep. I've had a minor setback with some of my personal projects and need to get back on track. Right now being alone, being responsible for only myself, is the most appealing thing I can think of.