Friday, February 16, 2007

in dreams begin responsibilities

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.


Auntie Mom said...

Ben may be wrong for you, but he's not unattainable.

He may not be making a move for a million reasons, but none of them is that he's better than you in any way. You could have him in a minute. I don't see why you should avoid him, or not go to the play. At the very least, I think you should see him to break the spell or it will continue to haunt you.

Dolly said...

Maybe you're right. But since he never told me specifically about the play and I found out myself from digging around online, it would look stalker-y if I turned up at one of his performances (it's a very small theater, so he would likely spot me). At this point, I haven't seen him in nearly three weeks and since he doesn't seem to be working while the show is running, probably won't until at least next month. So I just need to suck it up and get over him.

Elina said...

I don't think Dolly thinks he's too good for her, just that's he's one of those elusive types, which he is. And which is why Dolly is so attracted to him. My vote: don't go...Spend time with the doggy. How cute! And what a good lesson in reciprocal love.

Anonymous said...

What type of pooch is it? Dogs really are like having kids. Especially when they're puppies. I've had to stay home or leave gatherings early many a time to not leave my pup alone too long.
We even took him with us to a couple of christmas parties. As much as I miss the freedom of doing whatever I want and staying out late. I wouldn't trade the dog/cat/fiance situation for anything. Human kids are another story however haha.
I'd rather pay for doggy daycare than college :)

Anonymous said...

Pets give unconditional love. They're always there when you need them and after a trying day, there's nothing better than the sight of your pet waiting for you at the door wagging their tail. Enjoy the time you have with your puppy!

Do what your heart says about Ben! If you decide to attend it's up to you if you approach him at the end of the show, or maybe you'll get enough of a Ben dose just by seeing him perform.

Keep going on other dates and having a good time. By keeping an open mind, you may meet someone who will make you say, "Ben who?"


Auntie Mom said...

Hey Doll,

Oh, sorry. Thought he mentioned the play. I'm going through a major crush recovery myself, and part of it for me was being around him and breaking that mystique. But everyone's strategy is her own, of course. If puppy love and dating work for you, more power to you, love.

Elina, I don't know how someone could think someone else was unattainable without it being an "out of my league" statement, which is why I assumed she thought he was too good in a way. It's probably more the case that when we come across a real winner we may be intimidated, having spent such quality time with losers. And my Doll sure deserves a winner. I just want her to know it's well deserved and he's the one who's really getting the great end of the deal.

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