I don’t know what’s up with me today. I’m pumping gas and some guy is staring at me. At first I assume I must have something on my shirt. When I look down and realize that I don’t, I start feeling even more nervous. I want to run and hide and wonder why I didn’t just find a frigin gas station that had no one pumping at it. Some remote desolate gas station with tumble weed blowing through, like the kind you see on old TV westerns with John Wayne. Except that’s ridiculous, because tumble weed isn’t indigenous to Massachusetts.
Then I get to the grocery store and I’m picking out a head of lettuce. Red leaf and romaine are both $2.49, so I stand there paralyzed like a deer in headlights. Apparently this woman notices this and in an almost chastising way says to me, “it’s not going to jump off the shelf you know.” But that’s just it. I can’t make a fucking snap decision between Tropicana Pure Premium orange juice or Minute Maid.
Later, I walk to the post office to mail some seriously over-due bills, and I feel this pain in my left lung. It comes and goes, every few months. But because I used to chain smoke I have myself convinced that I’m a sneeze away from terminal small cell carcinoma. I start actually wondering who would come to my funeral, my wake, screwed up shit like that. In under a minute, my catastrophic thinking has me dead and buried. All from a pain in my lung…..Who fucking thinks like this?
Maybe…….just maybe……… this has something to do with seeing my ex yesterday.
He’s the ex-boyfriend, Daddy Dominant, sorry….. the sexual sadist. The man I’ve gone back to a thousand times after he’s treated me less than dog shit. As we stood there in a parking lot to exchange an important document, he told me in a voice void of any emotion, that he was heading out to fuck a 27-year-old at a local motel and didn’t have long. He is 52. He doesn’t even know her first name and will never see her after today, but he will “use her til she’s raw.”
Tears began to well up in my eyes and I felt like I was going to puke when he said that. He went on callously, “I’m sorry, but right now, sex with strangers is my number one priority. Maybe someday I’ll want to stop, now I don’t. I won’t ever forget you….you’ll always be my girl. I think it’s best not to call me anymore, for your own good.”
His words hung in the air like a garrote, suffocating the last bit of air between us. And as I sobbed, he approached me and stiffly put his arms around me for what seemed like a long time, except that I didn’t feel any emotions coming from him. It felt almost obligatory, staged, a mere perfunctory task that he must execute before moving to his next destination.
I can cook a mean lasagna.
I can give great head.
I can speak in several fake foreign accents and make everyone in the room laugh their ass off while doing them.
As a trained mental health counselor, I can de-escalate psychotic, suicidal, severely agitated, anxious patients in a locked ward.
I can read books to small children with enough enthusiasm to have special requests for” just one more”.
But for the life of me, I can’t love myself enough to walk away from him…..