peace. and quiet? july 26th.

it's strange being alone and happy about it.

and it's strange doing everything without music in the background. i do it pretty often, just because i can. and because, when i do, there is no noise at all, except for my upstairs neighbor thudding around, and downstairs landlord banging tools, muffled by the sound of my wall unit's hum and the box fan blowing.

today was good for a monday, but weird for any other day.

i biked to work without breaking a sweat, because it stormed last night and literally dropped from 96 to 72 in an hour. there was a fantastically cool breeze for a summer day all day today, from what i could tell. and it really didn't get all too hot today. almost ninety. but in the shade, a cool breeze. this is why i love summer in phila.

the thing is, i woke up well rested. and i forget that sometimes i require a lot of sleep. always when i'm on the dot. but i rarely treat myself to it.

yesterday i slept in after going to bed early on saturday night. and i didn't really get out of bed for more than a few hours yesterday. again... something i never do.

but yesterday was such a good day.

i spent a lot of time thinking. a lot of time writing. and a little time reading the second volume of dream whip that i just bought when nina was here. and of course, i spent a lot of time on fb, chatting and emailing with people. and flirting with chalk.

i guess i wrote that blog post. and then i was back in fb. and i had an email from brownies.

she had written me last week and it took a few days to get back to her. but when i did, she got back to me. and it was this looooong email. it was very involved, and scattered, the same way i write and think and feel. i read through it really quickly at first, then re-read it again while i simultaneously spent probably two hours writing her back.

it's so crazy to me. i got over this fear i had. and this pride i had. and set aside my stubbornness.

and look at where i am now.

all these years i lost. wasted. because i was too afraid and too stubborn to say something.

what's even more interesting is the difference between what i got from closure with brownies vs coffee. they were my top two priorities for the trip. and i'm really glad that i didn't back down, and that i didn't skirt the issue with either of them.

i expected the closure i got from brownies from coffee, and even less that i got from him, from her.

i expected to have this, 'i was thinking about you the whole time, too. i've missed you, too. i'm happy to have you back in my life, too.' from him.

and instead, i got it from the person who i thought i had so wronged, so abused, that she would never forgive me, and certainly never let me back into her life. and also, i thought she had completely moved on and would never look back.

it's funny. i've posted a lot about friends, and best friends, and friendships in general in the past.

and here's one more to add to the pile.

she wrote this line that was really great, because it's how i think, but am usually afraid to say. it went something like, 'not that we can go back to where we were, but this is so much better'.

it made me feel like i wasn't crazy.

because there's something very natural about picking up with friends where you left off. same thing happened with nate. and it was like no time had passed at all.

brownies is a different story, because we were so inseparable for so long, and closer than i've probably ever been with anyone except for nina.

and the way things shook out was so ugly and angry on my side, and so hurt on hers, that we can't really pick up where we left off the way nate and i did.

first we have to tear the house down to the foundation and fix that. then try to take a stab at building a more sensible house that probably won't be as big or as lavish as the original house, but it will be safe and warm and shelter.

and the fact that we're on the same page is a great place to start.

i hope that i can help her in her life, and i know that i'll learn from her, too.

it's nice to re-make an old friend. i wish i could hang with her more often.

so after all of that for hours yesterday, i was at work today, making sandwiches for the majority of the morning. and i wasn't really talking or singing along to the dance radio station here that rules our coffee shop, like i do everyday.

and when lauren came in, she noticed it. she asked me if i was okay, or mad at her.

and i realized that i'd been zoning out for a long time, just thinking about everything.

thinking about chalk and this coming weekend. thinking about brownies and the emails we sent back and forth yesterday.

and i told her that i was just thinking and didn't even realize how quiet i was. but as soon as she pointed it out, i realized that i'd been working in silence for most of an hour.

my mind is a scattered crazyplace. it always is. but i usually have two or three main things that i bounce back and forth between.

added to the mix yesterday/today was a lot of stuff about ever. because i was explaining a lot of stuff to brownies, and so it forced me to think about a lot of it.

and, related to that, today something happened that set me back a little bit, in my head.

i got home tonight from an adult swim after work with kit, and checked my email. low and behold, email from my divorce lawyer guy.

saying that he received the filed divorce complaint back from the courts. and that he is mailing it to ever today.

it goes certified, to verify that he receives it.

and the letter he wrote to go along with it was actually pretty nice. asking him to sign it, and call if he had any questions, or have his attorney call if he has any questions.

the things that set me back were these:

first, it lists my address. so ever will now know where i live. which i do not like.

but he is finding out THE WEEKEND I HAVE A MAN COMING TO STAY HERE. goddamn shit timing.

second, i said i would warn him when it was coming in the mail.

and since i said that, and told him about a month ago that it would be, i don't want to right now.

i feel like if he knows it's coming tomorrow, he won't answer the door. so i want a surprise attack.

regardless, the anxiety level is rising, because it's do or die time. it's time to see if he'll just sign the shit and fucking get over it. or if he's going to do everything in his power to prolong this shit and be a giant fucking baby and refuse to sign it for two years, until the court forces him to.

the letter was also nice, because it says that he (lawyer) is drafting up the settlement agreement, where we split up marital assets and explain how the house gets handled. and that he hopes we can do this amicably and without issue, basically.

third, after a month of not talking to him, emailing him, writing him, texting him, dealing with him at all, now i'm at the crux of the end of our marriage. and all i need is for him to sign the paper. so i can sign some paper that testifies that it is, in fact, his signature. ??

and then, in 90 days, we can take the next step. but i'm not totally clear on what that is. maybe it means that, if he refuses to sign, we can do the next thing.

i don't know. this is avoider mechanism at work again. i cannot deal with him in any form right now. i don't want to. i won't. and i don't know when or how or in what way i'll be able to again.

i cannot express the gratitude i feel for having my shrink appointment tomorrow.

i know that 45 minutes won't even cover the tip of the iceberg. and i also can't even figure out what to tell her, because there is so so much to tell.

i think chalk is important. because i am two weeks from the six month mark of our split, and feeling pretty confident that i can have premeditated sex without an emotional attachment. for the first time ever.

and also because i've figured out on my own that i will not date for at least another six months, because i know for a fact that i am not ready for that yet. and that i might need to reevaluate in another six after that. because in all likelihood, i'll need more than a year to return to the dating pool. luckily, i have lots of reconnaissance to do in the meantime.

but what else do i cover with her? coffee is so important in my head because of how much it affected me before i went home. but at the same time, she knows very little about him, and the effect it seems to be having on me at this time is minimal.

she knew about brownies from before, when we met up for the first time, with nate, so i can talk about that. i guess now the biggest thing is this brand new, two hour old news of ever and the divorce complaint. and, obviously, moving home. and what that means, and when it's okay to act on it, and how it all makes me feel.

it's so crazy that i haven't seen her in a couple months. i was going every other week, and a couple weeks in a row there for a while.

i'd like to have that back. tomorrow we can make that happen, because she books her own appointments now. but i feel like it will take four sessions to get to the grit of it all.

there's just so much to talk about and think about. and more than anything, i just want to hear what she has to say about it. which rarely happens, but specific to chalk and specific to moving home, i think she can help me find some answers and give me some timelines and guidelines for each thing.

but honestly, i am afraid of what she'll say about chalk. i talked to aubree about it today. i was afraid of her input, too.

but she was pretty funny, and didn't really get too into it. her only fear, which is probably what the shrink will say, is that she's afraid i'll get attached to him, because i'm such an emotional person.

and i can't explain it, but i'm going blue in the face here, that i just don't have those feelings for him. and the fact that it is purely physical to me is a mystery. he's really really good at what he does. he's very intense. but it's not even a physical attraction for me. it's an attraction to knowing that there's more where that two hour makeout fest came from.

but i also know that intern would be dangerous. so it's best to just let that little fire in my pants die out. because he is exactly the type of boy i'd attach to. it was fun trying to lie to myself. just saying... i'd still sleep with him. he is my dream boat.

but chalk, no. chalk will be a lot of fun. and kinda scary, probably, because i'm so self conscious and so modest, and such a prude, up until now, now as in this coming weekend.

but i'm not going to fall for him. and this is all in good fun.

this is all to fulfill a need. and to see whether or not i have what it takes to survive in this world that changed all the rules while i was busy being married.

i don't know if i do. if it was anyone other than him, i'd have some pretty serious thinking to do. but knowing someone for thirteen years, despite the fact that i haven't spoken to him in eight, makes it okay with me.

so here i am. an hour and a half after i started this. still listening to the hum of the wall unit and the box fan blowing on me. alone.

peace. quiet. stillness. thinking. feeling.

and really, really needing a cigarette. it's been three and a half hours.

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