Sunday, 01.16.2011 - 10:56 am.
I woke up this morning feeling as rested as I hadn't in a long time. I'm home alone and the only thing that bothered me was my cat and my dog coming in asking to be fed. I couldn't believe I slept so well (AND, I dreamed I was going to an Aerosmith concert! It never started, though, it was all about anticipation). To quote Fight Club, babies don't sleep this well.
But let me tell you where my mind has been these days. I have dedicated my days to being a psychologist, reading and practicing. The first friend I made at the hospital has passed away. I saw him agonizing on his bed on friday, I don't think he is alive by now.
I've been a good girlfriend, too. Texting Q in the middle of the day, seeing him every evening. We went to a motel one of these nights, it was my first time in one. We did it twice and it was halfway heaven. I get neurotically worried about being pregnant but we've done protection by the book. I know that's still not 100% safe but it's safe enough to avoid unnecessary concerns for now. My period is due today and assuming I'm not impregnated, as soon as it goes away I start a second form of contraception.
I started to think of Joseph one of these days, when I was telling Q about Watchmen. The last time I saw Joseph, he talked about it. Then I told Q about other graphic novels and we mentioned The Crow. I remembered that that's Joseph's favorite movie. And I wondered what he did with the movie poster I gave him. My best guess is that he threw it away.
I'm into Q, I really like him and my life is better with him in it, but I often find myself hugging him and feeling nothing. Or remembering I used to feel something when it was Joseph. I ask myself directly: do you miss him? Do you wish your current boyfriend was him? Most of times, I say no. Other times I say, I don't know. But then I think doing this is disrespectful to Q and I also realize that I'm not fully living the moment, for having thoughts on things that are out of my control. Eventually, I answer "yes", followed by "so what?".
On friday night, I finally met with CR and Lighthouse, I hadn't seen them since the second week of December. I took Q to meet them. They both were delightful and gave me late Christmas presents: CR gave me a tiny jar of honey and roses (gorgeous!) and Lighthouse a small drawing to hang on the wall, from an artist whose name I can't recall but does an insane work. I'd seen those drawings in his bathroom, they blew my mind. And now, I have one of my own. I have to say, I was surprised by the thought both boys put in those gifts.
We caught up on our lives and it was a great evening. Q got along with them, they laughed, and CR even took out a Bible to quote something. It took a lot of my strength to bring Q to meet CR and Lighthouse. These guys...they were my boyfriend, remember? For two years they were my wingmen, the ones who walked me through the world, the ones who figuratively saved my life in the middle of the cataclysm that was Joseph. I kind of felt like I was betraying them when I started dating Q.
But I don't think they cared that much. Maybe they saw me holding hands with Q. I think CR noticed and I wondered if he'd tell Joseph. CR mentioned him once, without a name, "a friend who got married". Lighthouse mentioned him when we were talking about CR's missing tooth (it's an old thing) and asked hey, your ex had something similar happen to him, right? That's as bad as it got, and in perspective, that was not bad at all. But after Q dropped me off that night at home, I couldn't stop thinking about Joseph.
Even though it seemed like a hardcore case of relapse, I knew it'd pass, as it always does. And I was looking forward to Saturday morning: M, the housekeeper, was leaving for the weekend and I had no patients to see. I could wake up and clean my bedroom and catch up on whatever and put on my music loud. The freedom of having the place to yourself.
I put on the DVD Q got me for Christmas: the four Ed Sullivan shows with The Beatles performing. I put it on, such an awesome black and white blast from the past. The phone rang and it was my best friend Victoria. I assumed she was replying to my text, about how she was doing and if we could meet up this weekend to hang out.
I remember her voice telling me I saw him...I saw them; I remember myself staring blankly at the screen, some performer in black and white; I remember the hole in my stomach and the automatic impulse to pull away the phone from my ear and scream at her, "I DON'T WANT TO HEAR ABOUT IT!".
But she went on and I let her. Because a shameful part of me did want to know. Victoria was at a bar at the beach, and so he was. He approached her. They friendly greeted each other. She asked how he was. Alive. I couldn't ask for anything else. And the baby, 9-months-old, the most beautiful thing. And his wife, over there with some friends. Victoria said there were some seconds of crickets chirping...I think he wanted to ask for you and I wanted to tell him so many things! To insult him for what he did to you, to tell him that you're doing great, about to leave for Chile, with a nice boyfriend... [I don't know if I'm going to Chile, really].
And then she told me how happy his wife was to see her. Victoria and Joseph's wife grew up together, they were neighbors. Funny, I gave Victoria rides for years...all that time, the girl Joseph dumped me for and married was literally in front of me. Victoria and her, Carmen, had a laugh remembering their childhood, although Carmen was probably a little intoxicated. But in a nutshell: there you had a happily married couple, taking a night off from their lovechild to enjoy their relationship.
And I was devastated. When we hung up, I started to cry so hard, I started to cry like it was 2008 and I'd just realized Joseph is living with her. I admitted, I'm not happy that they're happy. I don't wish them bad, I don't wish them anything, I suppose. I just wish I never had to hear from them ever again.
And this is a burden in my heart that I couldn't shake for the entire day. How, in retrospective, I was just a long parenthesis in Joseph's life, something to keep him busy while this girl he once dreamed of and couldn't have when they met, came around and came back for him. Doesn't it sound like a fucking fairy tale? How happy he seemed to have given me up because better, much better things came for him afterwards.
I got over this as I started to get ready to go out in the afternoon. I put on music, got dolled up. But I still had this awful feeling, I wish he could see me now. Q came for me and we drove around, went to some places, until we landed at the movies. Joseph was on my mind the whole time and I had this painful ball of tears in my heart, struggling to explode.
I went to the restroom before the movie and called myself down for doing this. For giving Joseph so much power over me when he isn't around anymore. For not focusing on what I have or how I have led my life after him. For being unfair to Q and not dedicating to him my mental energy like I should. I made the effort. But during the movie (entangled), the Joseph thoughts kept interrupting me and making me want to cry.
It helped going to Q's house afterwards, to greet his family and have him pick up his dinner (he's on a strict diet to gain some weight). It took my mind off things. Then he came to my house, to have dinner and watch Fight Club on TV.
Ah, yes. Fight Club. My favorite movie (and book) ever. The movie Joseph gave me in November 2008, as the last Christmas present, wrapped in simple aluminum paper; I still thought we were on a break, he was living with her. The movie I returned to him in October 2010, with the letter posted on my last entry, because the things you own end up owning you, and I was owned by that DVD that I kept hidden in a drawer because I had no desire to even look at it.
The movie that I asked CR to return for me. And CR looked at Brad Pitt as Tyler Durden and said, "Hey, it's Mr Smith!". The movie Mr and Mrs Smith. That's how I used to call Joseph and his wife and to this day, when I turn into a pathetic comedian, I consider myself the Jennifer Aniston of the story.
So Fight Club was on last night and I was looking forward to seeing it. While we waited, Q and I played house, having dinner and cuddling. He fell asleep for most of the movie but I didn't mind. I thought it was cute, really, and it was equally comforting having him by my side as I watched it.
I know the lines by heart. I recited them, I knew when they were coming. Q asked why I loved the movie so much and I gave any answer. It wasn't the entire answer but pretty much all he needed to know.
You know? The thing is, I am The Narrator. Joseph is Tyler Durden. I have no idea how, but he got so much under my skin...I was this dull person, right? And then he comes into my life. He wakes me up and shows me a world outside my own. He teaches me things, street knowledge for a bookworm. I play along but as things are changing, I resist. I'm not entirely ok as how some of those things are. But as I resist, and without noticing, I'm setting myself up. Then I realize, he's part of me. He's some things I want to be but to his eyes, I blew it all. We're the opposite to each other, but if one of us is destroyed, the other one is too. That's, perhaps, how come I feel a part of me is dead.
And in real life, I find myself visiting patients of terminal cancer, and there I really am the warm center of the universe.
Q left at 1 am, after the movie. There was no action. I was tired and more importantly, mentally drained. I didn't feel like crying anymore, as I felt that the movie made me re-ellaborate my relationship with Joseph, in the same way painting or modeling clay did (when I took that art-therapy crash course last September).