An Audience of One

I thought it would be easier than this. I thought I would be able to handle it better. More to the point, I didn’t expect this to happen. I don’t know what I did expect. I spent twenty years, thinking, wondering, fantasizing, about it. But it was never going to happen. It’s like my fantasies of playing in the NFL. In my head I am a stud middle linebacker for the Giants, but in reality I didn’t ever expect them to call. So what do you do when the Giants actually call?? You go and live in the moment, expect to get your ass kicked, and come home thinking “Hey, for a day, I was a NY Giant”. All good. But then they say they’ll keep you around for a while! Holy shit! The universe said “ok, you want it, you got it. Now what are you gonna do?”

She’s always been different to me. She has always been proof to me, the unexplainable exists. From the very beginning years ago, I was drawn to her. There’s always people like that. Some people have whatever it is, that makes others gravitate toward them. Men, women, friends and lovers alike. She’s one of those people. She’s the Queen Bee. But it was different than that for me. I always felt connected to her in a way I was not with others. Connected in a way I could not explain, but was undeniably real to me, and it transcended my reality. I could deny it and fight it and win, convincing myself it was more a product of a fantasy gleamed from every romantic thing we learn about love growing up. I could convince myself it was just that, a fantasy, and not real. I got good at it. But the second I saw her, or heard her voice, or brushed her arm it would all vanish. The walls and denials would crumble and I would be left wondering how she had this hold over me. Eventually you just accept it for what it is, surrender to it, and stop trying to figure it out. There’s freedom in that. When you no longer look for the answer to why, and surrender to it, you’re free to just experience it. From there it was easy to move past just the romance. I decided I would trust her with my soul. I would trust her with things I neither showed nor told anyone else. And I would trust her with everything she told and showed me, and with whatever there was between us. Sure, there were bumps in the road, white lies and omissions of truth, as is with every relationship. I’m not naive. But I felt like I wanted her to be the one I would could be completely real and unguarded with. I wanted to be my best self to her and I wanted it to be unconditional. There’s huge risk involved in that, the possibility of hurt, but also complete peace when you find it and accept it. Maybe allowing yourself to be that for someone and believing in that in someone else keeps alive the fantasy romance we learn growing up. I never asked for that in return. It’s much more difficult for her, and I understand that. It was enough to let her know she is one of my five people, and that is unconditional. This could all end tomorrow, and that won’t change.

But I hope it doesn’t. Because after all this time it feels as if we’ve been renewed. We are on to something wholly new. Now, its far from perfect. Living in the same state would be a a nice start. But there was no way I was going to pass on discovering how much is there. There are countless reasons why I shouldn’t try, or it won’t work, but my first discovery was that it all pales in comparison to how she makes me feel, and how much I want her.

Once we moved pass the.. so that happened stage, and I wasn’t going to chicken out and she wasn’t going to run away, we started to settle in to a nice, exciting and completely captivating give and take. I text her when I get up in the morning, she texts me when you go to bed at night, and in between we text and sometimes talk. Every day. Much of the time it was about the next time we would be able to see each other, and what we hoped would happen when we did. Then something started to happen. I started to learn about someone I had known for almost 20 years. Not the stuff she allows for the world. That I already knew. There is the person we allow the world to know and the person we really are. I began to know her in a way I had never imagined, and it was like I was getting to know a whole new person. A beautiful, intelligent, witty, sexy woman, who has excited and opened me. We began to share an intimacy that very few, if anyone, had been privileged to know.

That’s when it started to happen. That’s when it started to move into that territory I hadn’t counted on. I never imagined this really happening, and I feel like I’m riding the wave right now, figuring it out as I go and holding on hoping not to crash. She has become a part of my life. Not a part of my life like meeting friends for football on Sundays is a part of your life. She has become part of what defines me. Part of what I am. Part of who I am. That’s what I didn’t count on.

I look at her picture because it makes me feel better. When we talk, or exchange voice notes, sometimes I close my eyes because I love the sound of her voice and can imagine her next to me. I drink coffee from the mug she gave me, and sometimes just sit and smell the pine that smells like her home. Mostly, I imagine the feel of her. I’m a little obsessed with that. How she feels to my touch, and how I feel when we’re together. Don’t get me wrong.. I have an extensive library of the more carnal fantasies I imagine. A library that started more than a decade ago, and lately it seems I have to build a whole other wing to house the additions. But it’s the new stuff, the things I never imagined, or the things that have become real and are better than imagined, like the feel of her body, that occupy my mind these days. She isn’t just a part of my life. She has moved into my life. Become ingrained in it. A part of it like a big piece of the puzzle, not just a picture in a scrapbook. She has changed my reality.

Can you imagine the impact of something like that? I couldn’t. You’ve got your life figured out. Your family, job, friends and every day existence is in tune, if not just routine. You know when you get up in the morning where you’re going and have a pretty good idea what’s going to happen. You settle in and get comfortable for the long haul. Then, because of one unexpected night, when you decide to live solely for the moment, forgetting everything else, your reality changes. I’m not talking about a change in reality brought on by a consequence of an event. Whatever the consequence just becomes part of your present reality. I’m talking about a change in reality brought on by a person, to whom you’ve connected. Doors are opened, possibilities are suddenly not so impossible, and you surprisingly learn new things about yourself after all this time. You think differently. You see things in a new light. You understand things and yourself a little more. Everything changes.

So now, much like in the beginning, there is no way I’m going to pass on discovering where this leads. She’s decided she wants to keep me around for a little while. We can’t be together nearly enough right now. But it excites me planning the next time we can. I’ll take what I can. It’s been too long since I felt her body. It’s been too long since I felt her against me. It’s been too long since I felt the peace of being with her. But it won’t be much longer. I need her.