CAUTION: Extremely Long!
I had such a strange evening tonight, and I am so full of thoughts and emotions that I can't quite sort them out. Guess I've decided to let you all deep inside my brain. In order for that to work, I need to fill you in on some back story.
9 years ago, I moved back in with my parents after dropping out of college and trying to live on my own in the real world and maxing out my credit card. Shortly afterwards, I decided I needed a hobby that could get me out of the house. I had always loved to dance but I had limited exposure to it for most of my life. I was listening to country music at the time (more about my changing music tastes another time) and I found out that a local bar does a lot of dance lessons for both partner and line dancing. I started going regularly and I was hooked. For about five years, off and on, I was going out dancing as many as 2-3 nights a week. I was still overweight (around 180-190 pounds) but my legs were super toned and I built up enough endurance to dance for half an hour straight before needing to stop for water. Oh, I forgot to mention that several months after I first started going, I met my first real boyfriend there, L. That whole relationship, if that's what you could even call it, was sort of messed up. I don't remember everything, but one of the breaking points came when I wanted to get hold of him but he didn't have a phone, for whatever reason, so I had to wait for him to call me from a pay phone. That was the first of several one-sided relationships I would have. We were only really together for a month or two, but at 21 or 22 and having my first real relationship, it was pretty significant. I should also mention, for an unrelated story, my Purple Shirt Guy, who taught me at least half of what I know about country partner dancing. I guess the short version is that he taught me a lot, I enjoyed dancing with him, I was fond of him (though he is my parents' age), and I spent more time dancing with him than anybody else. Most guys I would get a song or two, but it is with Purple Shirt Guy that I built up my endurance enough to dance for half an hour, nonstop. Anyway, all good things must come to an end, and about 4 years ago, I ended a relationship, changed jobs, and changed hours. Having to be at work at 7:30 5 days a week did not lead me to want to stay out late. So I gave up dancing for a while. This past Januaryish, I decided to get back into it again. I started with a line dance class, where I met my female friend, K. It was her first time at that bar ever, and it was my first time back in several years. Through female K, I met male K2. I was intrigued by him at first, a young single guy taking dance lessons, but I was much too shy to talk to him, especially with other acquaintances hanging around. Then one night, female K had to leave early, and our other acquaintances weren't there, so I decided to go out of my way to talk to K2. He turned out to be really interesting once I got him to open up. We had danced several times before that evening, and I had helped him out a little bit, which he
crazy dogs trying to bark at people at 11:40 pm. ugh
Anyway, K2 always went out of his way to introduce me to his acquaintances as "The one who helped me find the beat." That felt pretty cool. OK, back to the night in question. Both Ks were taking an advanced two-step class together, and I told K2 he could throw the move they had learned that night at me to see if I knew it. I didn't so he taught me and was impressed that I picked it up so quickly. Then he randomly asked me if I wanted to play pool. Uh, sure, why not? Turns out he's sort of a pool shark, so I said, in my sarcastic attempt at flirting, "Oh, I see, you wanted to show off that you're good at something other than dancing, right?" He just tilted his head to the side and shrugged his shoulders in a noncommittal but totally admitting way. I figured he must have wanted to show off for me because he was interested in me. So that's the night I became definitely interested in him and wanted to get to know him more. So exactly 3 weeks ago, we had that chance. Few of his other acquaintances were there and neither was female K. So we spent the better part of 2 hours just talking to and dancing with each other. He was going out of town for 2 weeks for a business trip, so as I was leaving, I slyly said, "Hey, maybe you might want my number in case you get bored out there..." He took it, although I didn't have a ton of hope that he would actually call or text. As I got home and mentally reviewed everything that we had talked about, I realized that we would be much better as friends and would not do well long-term as a romantic couple. So my brain has known this for three weeks. And he never called or texted, so I knew he felt the same. My head knew things would never work between us. But my head forgot to tell my heart...
So tonight was the advanced Cowboy Cha-Cha at 7:15. The advanced class is offered the first Saturday of every month. I went for the first time last month and got to dance with K2 the entire time. Female K was there with male acquaintance R who has helped all 3 of us become better dancers. It was a lot of fun, so I made sure to go tonight. Female K was taking lessons somewhere else tonight, and R is out of town, so it was just K2 and I. It was a lot of fun. It was really hard, and K2 was on the verge of quitting at one point, but I was able to encourage him enough that not only did he stay with it, but he finally got it, and I did too. Class ran late and we stayed after class to practice some more, so I probably had an hour and a half alone with him. So then we went up to the main bar area and met up with some of his other female acquaintances. Now here's where things get really weird.
I noticed a guy who looked a heck of a lot like my ex from 8 or 9 years ago. I wasn't sure it was him, and it took me most of the night to decide to go up to him. Meanwhile, K2 is busy dancing with all of his other female acquaintances or having conversations with other people that it is too loud for me to be able to hear and participate. I did get to do one Cowboy Cha-Cha with him out on the crowded dance floor to practice the new moves that we had learned, but that was it. I didn't even get a single two-step - not just with him, with ANYBODY. I did 2 or 3 solo, crowded cha-chas and a few line dances in, but not much. Around 10ish, K2 was off dancing with one of his girls and I decided to be brave and walked up to the guy who looked like my ex-boyfriend and said, "Excuse me, are you L?" He just smiled and said, "How have you been doing? It's been a long time." "You remember me?" "Yeah, Jennifer, right? So how've you been?" We chatted for a while, and I had this weird dynamic in my head alternating between "Man, he is so obnoxious, how did I go on more than one date with this man?" and "I really hope he asks for my number, it would be nice to go on a date." Confusion, confusion. Oh, and it turns out he had been married for 7 years but got divorced last fall. Not that it's relevant. Anyway, the conversation was nearing its natural end, and a song with a Cowboy Cha-Cha beat came on and I told L that I needed to go find my cha-cha partner. L understood and said "Go, go" in a friendly sort of way. I couldn't find K2 in time to dance with him - he wound up at the edge of the pack with one of his other girls. After the song ended, I said hi to them and made a joke, then left the dance floor to find L. He wasn't where I had left him. I saw him talking to a sound person, but he didn't turn my way when I approached, so I kept walking. What more was there to say? After another failed attempt to find K2 for a Cha-Cha, he and the girl he was dancing with directed me to the table they were sitting at. I had already confirmed to myself that K2 was not romantically interested in me because not only did he not call or text me when he was gone and had my number, but he also forgot to ask me how a couple of things went that I had told him 3 weeks ago were coming up. If he were interested, he would have at least remembered to ask about those events. So I know I'm just another friendly dance partner to him. Well, my brain knows, my head knows...So he gets up to dance with M, and the lady at the table who I had just met and I don't remember her name asked after a while where K2 was. J replied (I think, it is so loud in there) "He's probably off to the side talking to M, that's the girl he likes." My heart crashed to the floor. I think it was OK for him to not be interested in me, but for him to be interested in somebody else - somehow that hurts more. I don't know why, except that my heart definitely did not get the message from my head that we aren't supposed to like him anyway. Unfortunately, my heart despises logic. A few minutes later, L came up and asked J, who was sitting right next to me, to dance. I don't know why, but mentally I just snapped. My ex-boyfriend has this whole long conversation with me and then asks the lady next to me to dance? What the heck? Why do I care? I shouldn't care, he's obnoxious. And K2 was nowhere to be seen from my seated location. It was creeping close to 11 pm, and I have already been up since 5:30 and I have to get up at 5:30 again tomorrow (well, technically later this morning now that it's after midnight), so it was definitely time to leave. I saw K2 before I got to the exit, so I said good night, and, I'm not sure I heard this right, but it sounded something like, "Thanks a lot for tonight, Pal." Pal? I mean, yes, I guess that's what we are and should be, but it was just the icing on the cake to leave me feeling unwanted, unloved, loaveable, unLIFE. Most of the time I am OK being single, but then crap like this happens and...I feel like the scum of the earth. I'm only worthy of talking to or dancing with? I'm not worthy of actual time, real time, not bar time? I'm not worthy of kissing, of loving? Is it all because of my weight? Is it my insecurity about my weight? Maybe there's something inherently wrong with my personality that nobody can connect to. Of course not, it's my weight, most men are turned off by my weight (I guess since I told you I was 180-190 before, I am currently just under 230). Which makes me want to get back on my diet. Except then I'm losing weight for the wrong reasons, which never lasts. I need to want to lose weight because I'm tired of my back hurting and I'm tired of being tired all the time. But DAMMIT I should NOT have to lose weight to fall in love! There are some guys out there who prefer bigger women. I just have to find one who neither has nor wants kids, is okay with and not allergic to my dogs, and would be okay with the fact that I am bipolar. I have other criteria, of course, but these are those MUST HAVE/CAN'T STANDs. Can't stand. I can't stand myself sometimes. How can I eat so much? How did I let myself get so fat? Why don't I have better will power? I don't even like myself half the time, much less love myself, so how in the hell am I ever going to find somebody to love me when I don't love myself? But how can I? I'm gross and fat and lazy. I can barely even keep up with my laundry. I have two novels just waiting to be finished, but neither has been touched in months. And I have to deal with myself, all of myself, for the rest of my damn life. Depressed, manic, whatever, it's all me. You're supposed to love all the different parts of yourself, right? Fat lazy still borderline depressed WG does not feel very lovable right now. I have a lot of customers who love me because I am good at my job. I have family who loves me because they are supposed to. But what the hell. I feel like such a waste of space sometimes. No, I'm not suicidal, nobody panic, I'm just so terribly FRUSTRATED right now. I want to change. Why can't I change? I've gone 4 years without placing a bet of any kind (I'm a compulsive gambler) but I can't go a day without chocolate/sugar/junk food? What's that all about? And I want to be a writer but I can rarely even be bothered to write blog posts, much less work on my novels. Is this what my life will be like for the rest of my life? Lazy, unmotivated, ALONE and miserable? Man, I certainly hope not. I should be able to change. But how? How. How?!?!?! I don't know. I really kind of hate myself right now. If I hadn't tried to find K2 for the cha-cha, how much longer would I have chatted with L? Does it matter? He was obnoxious, why would you want to date somebody that obnoxious? You're not that desperate. Are you? Are you?! I don't know, maybe...it has been almost 2 years since my last attempt at a relationship, and that was a nightmare.Ugh. What do I want? What do I want from life? What do I want from myself? Why am I writing this all? Why am I sharing it? NOBODY is going to find this interesting. It's a boring journal post! Nobody is going to read it aside from your mother. Ugh. Why do I even have the urge to share this? Maybe somebody out there can relate and be happy that they aren't alone in these thoughts? Maybe somebody will read this and tell me I'm crazy? Is that a good thing? I don't even know.
X Bar and men. Then. Now. Always.
And my stupid head forgot to fill in my clueless, dumb, useless heart.
If you managed to read this far, THANK YOU, and if you have any advice or other comments, I would be happy to hear them. Sorry about the spam filter, I was up to my eyeballs in spam. Also it is now 12:43 am so forgive me for any typos I missed.