THE LAST FIVE ...
Closing up shop
It may be time for a change
Entry in the air
Music of the moment
Or ... BE RANDOM!
Sunday, Dec. 09, 2001 - 9:31 p.m.
Maybe I put my hopes too high this time
I crawled into bed Thursday night all tired and worn out from the day and had all kinds of thoughts racing through my head.
I'd just received my first piece of mail - a Christmas card from Casey's (and Tessa's) mother - at my new apartment and read a letter my sister sent from France that was mailed to my house. As I turned out the lights, all kinds of thoughts started running through my head about Jess and her time in France, about Casey and her relationship with Tessa, about me and my seemingly nonexistent expressions of affection for my family.
I don't understand it - I have no trouble telling Casey how much I love her, or expressing to my other friends how important they are to me, how much it means to have them in my life. But I'll rarely come out with an unsolicited "I love you" to my parents or sister, or even a salutory one on the phone. I'll sign e-mails and cards that way, but that's about it. It's like I find myself about to say it and then, in an involuntary reaction, I hesitate, catch myself just before forming the words, and then I don't. I can't explain it. Lying in bed Thursday night - early Friday morning really - I found myself rationalize it as some mechanism within me that has me believing that because they're my family, there's less need to say "I love you," when, really, there's more of a need for it. I know what it feels like to hear it from my closest friends, and I'm sure it means the same to my family coming from me.
It bothers me when I see how others interact with their families and I know that I'm not as good at it. I know how Heather shows her love for her sisters and I've seen Casey and Tessa together. Granted, those are sister-to-sister relationships, but even Jaime and Brett seem to express themselves better than I am able to with Jess. It seems to me that I need a holiday or birthday or some other occassion to summon such outward displays of admiration.
So as I lay there in bed, I thought I'd write Mom and Dad and Jess letters this Christmas, explaining their importance in my life and reassuring them that although I might not show it or say it, their feelings for me are returned by me.
But too tired to turn on the light and boot up the computer, I drifted off to sleep, and all the inspiration, all the creative energy that had me composing the letters in my head there in bed, was gone when I awoke and began a Friday of taped television and Game Show Network reruns. I should respond to my itchy writing fingers more often, no matter what time of day or night.
So my weekend - something akin to a real weekend by most standards - was OK. I went into it with high expectations, then found myself feeling lost and out of place for some unexplained reason. Once arriving in New York on Friday night, meeting Casey at work, then finding Bryan and Mia at the restaurant and waiting for them in a bar across the street in Times Square, I felt so uninspired. I had no desire to decide where to go or figure out what to do. I was hoping the night would just sweep us up and decide for us where we'd land, but it never really happened. I think my own concerns over money and wanting to keep myself in check to be sure that I don't slide into an uncomfortable situation held me down. Casey led us down to the Village, and we had a perfectly fine conclusion to the night drinking pints in the Village Tavern, but although I was ready to leave when we did, it seemed to end too soon.
Saturday, while Bryan and Mia walked around Manhattan among the crowds and spent money - which we'd already done the day after Thanksgiving with Casey's family - Casey and I sat around her apartment, watching TV and movies and then driving back to my place for dinner. Bryan and Mia came over by 8:30, and Lori and Alex worked on the ravioli and we all sat on the floor around the makeshift expanded "table" - really a flat, plywood bed frame - and enjoyed a delicious meal. A quick game of pop-culture trivia (Pop Smarts) won by Casey, Kerry, and to a lesser extent, me, and all of a sudden it was 11:30 and Bryan and Mia were on their way back to NYC to meet up with another ND graduate.
And I remained settled in New Jersey. Normally during Bryan's visits, I'm still going strong when they're ready to pack it in. I'm wanting one more drink or one more bar when they want to head back to Mia's apartment. This time, I was weary and not up for a return trip into the city. I feel Bryan noticed and likely said something to Mia, and I feel the need to assure him it was a fluke thing, as if I was merely out of it this weekend, under the weather or something. I'll have to reassure him that our days of marathon drinking - like last New Year's night in Arizona or Julie's June wedding in Cincinnati - are not gone. But they just weren't there this weekend.
I almost felt like getting up and going into the city to join them for brunch today, but the idea of a slow morning in bed sounded too appealing. And as Casey discussed it, I was intrigued with the idea of getting up and showering in order to catch an early enough showing of "Ocean's 11" so I could make it to work, but we - I - decided against it, only to learn that Kerry was planning to go with another friend, and Casey joined them for the 3:30 show, a start too late for me to join them. No matter, because we're going Monday, hopefully, and I've been reminded how excited I am to see this movie, as I was a month ago when everyone else was gushing over that British book movie.
Ah well, things will be different tomorrow. I'll wake up at home and go play hockey and forget about my unfulfilled expectations and be happy again about the good things.
Next page: I'm smarter than Casey
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