Chameleon Boy

Here we are yet again. November 24th, a date which has been stuck in my head for quite a long time due to the significance of everything that happened. Of course, memories that aren’t written down get a little distorted when they age so last time I referenced the date a few years back a few things were still a bit skewed. I knew the date had more significance than what I could remember, I just couldn’t remember exactly what it was until a few months ago. It was then that I went back and read an article I wrote in January 2014 and really put the pieces together. Anyone who understands how trauma therapy works, knows that’s part of it. Certain things about certain memories are simply locked away until you can properly deal with them. When you’re emotionally ready, the fog lifts and the details come to the surface. It’s not a matter of creating things that weren’t there, but distorting things that were into something less emotional and easier to comprehend. SCIENCE.

Anyway… so now that I’ve dealt with the emotional side of things clarifying the memories, I felt like sharing the story. I tried to find the original piece I wrote regarding my apprehension surrounding November 24th, but it seems to have gotten lost in the shuffle of blogdom over the years, or I’m simply not looking in the right place. Its in my archives somewhere, as I committed to never edit them once I published something at the relaunch this past January. You can’t edit the past after all, you can only recognize your mistakes and learn from them. So why should I go back and edit my writing when the basis of everything has been my recovery? That’s not recovery. That’s the exact opposite.

But I digress… Version 2.0 if you will is this:

A bit of back story before we jump right on in here, while I eventually ended up in a relationship with the boy in this story (Kiosk Kid), at this phase in our lives we were merely coworkers and friends, working together at a small franchise of a fast food place. I’d figured out he was the boy I’d pretty much always been drawn to by this point, but he was dating someone else. The attraction was still there, but I wasn’t going to step on anyone’s toes, or ruin any relationships just because of some ironic coincidence. So, friends and coworkers we remained. We had spent time together out side of work a few times, but never in any sort of romantic capacity. I had exactly two friends whom I could count on and confide in including the boy, and even if we hadn’t ended up in a romantic relationship down the road he would have always held special place in my life. Especially considering he is the only one to ever stand up to my mother and call her out on her abusive behaviors.

Upon working together one evening in mid November, the topic of the approaching holiday came up.  His girlfriend had returned to her native European country to attempt to renew her visa, plus he had expressed that his family was going to be out of town, he would be spending the holiday alone that year, and I found it particularly sad that anyone should be alone on the holidays regardless of the circumstances. So I insisted he join me at my family celebration, with a running joke between us  that he bring a Hershy’s Pie. (There’s a story behind the Hershy’s Pie too, but I’m keeping that one to myself.) He agreed and we made arrangements.

That entire conversation leading up to our arrangements was so choppy and convoluted, it took me literal years to figure out what he was talking about. I’m not sure if he was distracted, exhausted, or just avoiding something that was emotional when talking about his ex-wife, and family but a lot of things he said were all TRUE, but not a on a lineal A+B=C thought pattern. I misunderstood at the time, and then when I set out to write about it the first time, myself lost in overwhelming emotions all I could recall was the misunderstanding. I’ve managed to straighten it out memory wise, but without a link to the post I’m referencing it’s pretty pointless to add those corrected details here. Especially when they’re not really vital to the story, only my integrity. Yes. I was WRONG. Here I am, admitting I was WRONG in my recollection of an event. Anyway…

It was Thanksgiving day, November 24th. I had worked late the night before so I slept until about an hour before we were supposed to meet. I got up, showered, and waited to hear from him. Since he was so apt to forget appointments he had told me he would call me when he was on his way so I wasn’t waiting around for him. I had agreed and appreciated his honesty and thoughtfulness this time around. It was nice to see that the more I got to know him, the less annoying and arrogant he was becoming. In the back of my mind I wondered if it was a defensive stance he took on life, much as my cruelty and anger had been. Eventually my phone lit up and the ringer indicated that it was him. I answered, happy and excited to hear from him. I was also proud of him for being pretty much on time. He was running a few minutes late, but nothing extraordinary.

“Sorry I’m running a little behind. I forgot the stores were closed today so I’ve been driving all over the place looking for a pie.” He explained, after we had said our hellos.

“Pie? Oh! You didn’t have to bring it. It was more of a joke.” I said with a laugh.

“Really? I’ve been driving all over the place looking for this pie and I didn’t even need it?” He asked.

“Yeah, you didn’t have to bring anything, but it’s okay. We’ll enjoy it anyway.” I answered still kind of amused that he had even remembered that I mentioned bringing pie.

“Oh well… now we have pie. I’ll be there in like ten minutes. See you soon.” He said before he disconnected.

As I headed out the door I told my family that I was going to get him and would be back momentarily.

I arrived in the empty parking lot of our designated meeting place a few moments before he did, but soon he pulled in and parked beside me rolling down his window.

“So, how do you want to do this? Do you want me to follow you, or you could just give me directions.” He asked.

“I’ll just ride over with you.” I answered, turning off my car and hopping out.

“Uh… how are you going to get your car back?” He asked, unlocking his car door as I hopped inside.

“You can bring me back over when we’re done.” I answered. “We live like five minutes away, it’ll just be easier.”

“Why can’t I just follow you? I’ll show up. I’m here. It’s not like I’m going to change my mind and run away or anything.” He protested, with an amused look on his face.

“Well I didn’t think you were going to bail on me now after coming all the way down here. It’ll just be easier this way. Come on. We’re going to be late.” I insisted as I opened the passenger door of his car and hopped in.

“Okay, I guess. Where to?” He complied, following my directions and heading out of the parking lot.

We arrived at my grandparents house a few moments later to extremely nervous and awkward introductions. The afternoon spent with my family went much better than expected. Everyone was a little nervous at first being the first time any of the granddaughters had invited a boy to a family function, but he quickly warmed right up to everyone and became the life of the party. After the two course meal, dessert, and several hours of conversation we all decided it was time to pack up and head back home. He was very appreciative toward my family for allowing him to spend the afternoon with them and the food and then we headed out to his car so he could return me to my own.

“What are you doing later?” He asked, as he opened the driver’s door.

“Absolutely nothing, why?” I answered, before opening my own door.

“Want to come over and watch a movie? I’m supposed to go up to my parents house and take care of the dog, but after that I’m just going to be sitting around at home. I’d like the company, if you’re up to it.” He asked, fidgeting around with his keys.

“Sure. What time do you want me to come up?” I answered, gladly willing to give him some company as I slid into the car.

“I’ll call you when I’m done up there, but probably around like eightish or something. Not too late.” He answered also sliding into the car.

“Sounds like a plan to me.” I said, as we pulled out of the driveway.

“Okay, that’s a relief. I really didn’t want to be alone tonight. I mean, I was okay with it, but after hanging out with you this afternoon it is really depressing to spend the holidays alone.” He sighed more to himself than to me.

“Yeah, kind of. I’m ready to get away from my family anyway. One afternoon is more than enough.” I replied.

“They don’t seem so bad, the way you described them I was worried they were going to try convert me or exercise me or something like that.” He said, as we made our way through the empty streets.

“Why on Earth would they do that? They liked you. I knew they would. You have a sweet personalty once you get underneath all the arrogant bullshit.” I laughed, not really thinking my compliment would be taken any other way.

“I don’t have a personality.” He replied as a matter of fact as we turned the corner and into the parking lot pulling up to my car.

“What do you mean you don’t have a personality? Of course you do! Everyone does.” I retorted.

“No, I really don’t. I just sort of absorb whatever I’m around. Like an iguana. I assess the situation and behave however everyone else is to fit in.” He explained.

“An iguana? What the hell are you talking about?” I asked, still amused, missing the seriousness of the conversation.

“That lizard that changes colors? Isn’t that an iguana?” He asked, slightly taken aback by my dismissal of his serious soul bearing conversation, and a bit flustered that I seemed to be mocking him.

“You mean a chameleon?” I asked, smiling.

“Oh yeah. Chameleon. Whatever. That’s what I am. I used to have a personality, but I got tired of being treated like shit and taken advantage of all the time. One day, I woke up and decided that I wasn’t going to be that person anymore so I killed him. He doesn’t exist anymore, now I’m just a chameleon. I can go anywhere and be anything everyone likes.” He explained, the air of severity finally beginning to sink in with me.

“But why? Why do you want to be a chameleon? You’re funny, smart, and kind. What’s wrong with that?” I asked.

“I’m only funny because I absorb what other genuinely funny people say and repeat it. Most of my jokes are from movies. I couldn’t come up with that stuff on my own, most people just don’t pay attention like I do so I can get away with it. I don’t have favorites either. Like music? I just listen to whatever’s popular so I can relate to people. I’m just a shell of a person, really. It’s better this way. I like it.” He continued. “Changing is easy, you just have to commit to it. I’m not going to be that guy anymore, and then… don’t.”

I sat quietly trying to understand what exactly he was trying to tell me, and comprehend why anyone would want to sacrifice the very essence of self to simply fit into the crowd. It tugged at my heart strings, here was this sweet boy who had been so tormented by loneliness in his early life he had convinced himself living as a shell of humanity was better than embracing his individuality. (Also, after starting my studies I realized he was basically listing off the DSM definition of a specific mental disorder. Which he did a second time, not so long ago the last time we spoke. I caught it the second time.)

We sat there a few moments in silence. Me trying to process everything he just said, and he not sure what to say next after dropping his facade. The moment soon passed as he eventually said: “So… I should probably go before the dog destroys the house. Are you still up for a movie later?”

“Well yeah… why wouldn’t I be?” I answered honestly, still completely unfazed by the bombshell he had just dropped as it whizzed right over my head.

“I don’t know… you got all weird and quiet all of the sudden.” He said, pointing out the obvious.

“It’s just the turkey coma kicking in. I think I’m going to go home and take a nap.” I answered with a smile.

“That sounds like an awesome idea actually. I’ll call you later, okay?” He said, returning a half hearted smile of his own.

“Okay. I’ll see you later.” I said, opening my door and jumping into my own car. I sat in the parking lot as it warmed up, and waved as he drove away. The only thing that struck me about his awkward vulnerability was the incredible sadness behind it, how such a wonderful person could feel so ostracized and unappreciated. I listened through a CD or two before I finally decided to head back to the house and patiently wait for his call.

The evening passed ever so slowly as I waited for his phone call. Eight came and went, with no word. I figured much like the rest of the world he had gotten home and fallen asleep so I didn’t take it personally, but I was a little disappointed. I had been looking forward to spending the evening together. Just as I was changing into my pajamas for the evening around 9:30 my phone rang. It was the boy and just as I suspected he had fallen asleep. He apologized, and invited me up to his apartment. I quickly redressed, and made my way upstairs and headed toward the door.

“Where are you going?” Mom asked as I passed through the living room where the rest of my family was watching a Christmas movie on television.

“To hang out with Lynda.” I answered with out second thought. (The first time I had spent the evening with this boy, {our first “date”} I had used the same excuse that I was spending time with another coworker of ours. It was true, nothing sexual was going on between he and I, but I didn’t feel like explaining or arguing with my mother about it.)  

“Oh okay. Have fun.” Mom said as I continued out the door.

I arrived at his apartment, let myself in as he said I should and found him fighting with a giant area rug in the kitchen.

“Hey, what are you doing?” I asked as I patted his dog on the head and tossed my purse and keys on a small wicker corner shelf just inside the door as if I had lived there for years.

“Trying to get this rug laid out. Lowe’s was open and I stopped in on my way home to check out the sales, I needed a rug for the kitchen so I picked this up.” He answered man handling the rug into place before attempting to cut the ties and unraveling it.

“Okay, well a rug I can see, but isn’t this a little excessive? It basically covers the entire floor.” I said taking the liberty to pour some cat food into the cats’ dish as they both batted and meowed at me.

“My ex wife hated walking around on the cold tile so I just kind of got used to carpet in the kitchen, and it was on sale.” He answered.

“Oh well, I guess I can see that, but what about all the food and spills? Doesn’t it get really gross?” I asked stepping out of the way as he slid the rug into place.

“Not really.” He answered as he unrolled the rug and made minor adjustments.

“Well whatever. It’s your kitchen. What are we watching tonight?” I asked.

“I don’t know. What do you want to watch? Pick something from the shelf.” He answered. “I need to take the dog out. I’ll be right back.”

I wandered out into the living room, and started browsing through his massive movie collection. I found one that I had seen in theaters and greatly enjoyed so I wanted to watch it again. It was really the only one I was familiar with it the entire collection. I picked it off of the shelf and returned to sit on the couch with it in hand as I kicked my shoes off by the door and made myself comfortable.

He soon joined me, removed his jacket and plopped down next to me on the couch for a moment before getting up to put the dvd in the player.

“What’d you pick?” He asked, as he took the movie from me and hopped up. “Hide and Seek huh?”

“Yeah, I saw it in theaters but I haven’t seen it since. It was really good. Actually, funny story about that. When I was there I saw one of the GM’s wife with another man. She turned around and asked me a question. Thankfully she didn’t recognize me, or maybe she did. I don’t know. It was really awkward.” I answered.

“Wow. Seriously?” He asked as he returned to the couch.

“I know. I didn’t say anything, obviously, because I mean… I don’t know. It could have been a guy from work or something. I didn’t know, and I wasn’t about to go around destroying lives for no reason.” I explained as the movie began.

“Yeah, you’re right. Come here.” He said pulling me close to him. “I had a really nice time this afternoon. You’re family really isn’t so bad.”

“No they’re not so bad in small doses. You don’t have to live with them.” I laughed, as I snuggled up next to him, and then decided instead to rest my head on his lap and stretch out on the couch.

“You’re dad’s pretty cool. I can see how your mom gets on your nerves, but I like your dad.” He said as he rested his arm across my shoulder and settled into his corner of the couch.

That was the last we said as I dozed off watching the movie.

Our evening went much like the first night we spent together. Although instead of the awkwardness that came with the first invitation to his bed, we were much more comfortable. It was just sort of understood that after the movie we were going to go upstairs to sleep. (The original Netflix and Chill lol)  Some how I had managed to get the next day off. I don’t know if it was just the luck of the draw as I was generally always off on Friday’s or if it was intentional because his good friend was in charge of scheduling and knew we were planning on spending the holiday together. Either way, I was glad I didn’t have to wake up early and work on a hectic post holiday schedule.

“Hey, would it bother you if I slept in my boxers?” He asked as I plopped down on the bed fully clothed.

“No. I don’t care. It’s your house, you can do what you want.” I answered. It honestly didn’t bother me, and I wasn’t entire sure why he was asking me since we had spent our last two encounters cuddling together. While we weren’t sexually intimate, everything else about our relationship was very personal. I did like the fact that he respected me enough to ask, it just seemed to come at an unusual time.

“Oh my God, thank you. I hate sleeping in clothes. Well actually I sleep naked, but boxers are way more comfortable than my clothes.” He answered. “Do you want a tee shirt or something more comfortable to sleep in? I’ve got a closet full.” (See? Totally went right over my head. I’m blaming it on childish innocence. Older, wiser me remembered this exchange and laughed. It’s funny to me at the beginning stages of our friendship/relationship that he was so subtle and coy, because once we actually started dating he was very blunt and to the point about everything. His lust for me, his feelings, the whole nine yards. Although that might have been because I was so oblivious to his more subtle advances early on. Derp derp)

“Thanks, but I’ll be okay.” I answered, quietly watching him haphazardly undress and toss his clothes into a pile in the corner.

“Are you sure? If you change your mind just let me know. Do you mind if I sleep under the blankets tonight? I mean just because it’s cold.” He asked, hopping into the bed. (The first night we had spent together, he invited me upstairs and our sleeping arrangement had been he on top of the blankets fully clothed and me underneath.)

“Sure, I got a little too hot the other night anyway. You were freezing. I covered you up before I left.” I said as I rolled over to face him.

“I noticed. Thank you. I was pretty cold.” He said with a smile as he crawled under the blankets with me and extended his arm to pull me close.

I complied and scooted over next to him, which was honestly a little weird with me in my khakis and sweater while he was practically undressed. We laid there talking well into the morning about everything and nothing. The only thing I really remember is discussing how he was looking to find another roommate, but expressed concern over inviting another young woman into his home after the mess that had resulted from his first attempt at a female living partner. We’d talked about it before, but he went a little bit more in depth to the saga as I quietly nodded off to sleep, snuggled securely in under his arm.

The next morning we woke together. It was nice to sort of stir to life at the same time, and funny that we had both opened our eyes and stared at the ceiling in silence until he finally asked: “Kelli? Are you awake?”

“Yep. I’ve been awake for like half an hour, but I didn’t want to disturb you.” I answered honestly, rolling over to face him.

“That’s pretty funny. Me too.” He replied.

We both laughed as he hopped out of bed.

“Hey, I’m going to take a shower, do you need the bathroom?” He asked as he stretched and lumbered across the room to his closet.

“Yeah, I guess I better.”

“Okay.” He answered sitting down at his computer.

I sat there in silence for a moment, until he looked over at me with a puzzled look on his face.

“Are you… gonna’ go do, that… or?” He asked.

“Where it is?” I asked returning his expression.

“Oh! Yeah, it’s just out the door to the…uh… left. Left, yes.” He replied after pausing to look at his hands to figure out what direction the bathroom was in.

I laughed to myself as I rolled out of bed and brushed past him into the hall way, where I also had to get reoriented with proper directions before entering the bathroom.

“Thank God, I’m not the only one.” He yelled after me as I found the bathroom and closed the door behind me.

For being the bathroom of a single man it was surprisingly well kept. Everything was very organized and clean. I returned to the bedroom just as he was getting ready to head to the shower.

“After I get out of the shower I’m heading up to hang out with a buddy of mine before work, but you’re welcome to stay as long as you want. Make yourself at home.” He said with a smile as he bounced past me into the bathroom.

I didn’t have anywhere to be, or anything else to do so I snuggled back up into the bed closing my eyes waiting for him to get out of the shower. I could have made my way down stairs, but I just wanted to lay there. The one place I’d found away from my mother where I felt the safe and secure, the place that calmed my racing mind and where I was able to fully and completely relax. I hadn’t intended on going back to sleep, but listening to the water running in the bathroom, and with the room warming up as the sun rose higher in the sky I couldn’t help myself.

The next thing I remember was a hand placed lightly on my back and a gentle shake to roust me from sleep.

“Kelli? Hey, I don’t mean to run you off or anything, but I’m getting ready to head out the door. I’m already like an hour late.” He explained softly.

I opened my eyes, and rolled over to see him staring down at me with a rushed, but content smile.

“Oh I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to fall back to sleep. I’m up.” I said, sitting up and rubbing the sleep out of my eyes again.

“It’s okay. My buddy has known me since we were like nine. He doesn’t expect me to be on time, but he lives out of town and is only here for the night. I need to get going. I’m going to go let the dog out. Wait for me, and we’ll leave together so I can lock the door behind us.” He said, heading out the bedroom door and quickly down the stairs.

I followed closely behind him and as he headed out back to let the dog out, I headed to the living room to check my phone. I had turned the ringer off and left it down stairs on purpose. I assumed that my mom would call when I didn’t return home, but what I hadn’t expected were the hateful, accusatory voicemails she left. I plopped down in the middle of the couch, picked up my phone and punched in my voicemail password. (Boy that dates things lol) Listening to the first voicemail wasn’t too bad. She was upset, but mostly concerned that I hadn’t returned home nor had I called to tell her I was okay. The second voicemail she left started to get a little hateful. She informed me that when I hadn’t returned home by morning she went to look for me. When she hadn’t found me at work, she asked where she could find Lynda. She found Lynda, and asked where I had gone after I left her house. To which Lynda honestly replied that I had never been to her house that evening. I had been caught. She asked me to call her back. When I hadn’t returned her call, she called and left yet another voicemail. I was upset by the second voicemail, but the third one I couldn’t even finish listening to.

“I know you weren’t with Lynda last night. You were with that boy weren’t you? You’re still with him aren’t you? How long has this been going on? Are you sleeping together? You’re nothing but a deceitful little whore, how dare you lie to me…”

After listening to that, I burst out into tears and collapsed from the couch onto the floor, throwing my phone across the living room. I lay there crying, curled up into the tightest little ball I could contort myself into. There were rarely any moments that I felt so completely helpless that death seemed like a welcome release. That was one of those moments. I was crying so hard trying to purge the pain from my soul, but the only thing that came was more tears.

“Kelli, what’s wrong?” He asked concerned, as he walked around the corner. “What the hell happened?”

He pulled me up off the floor and sat us both down on the couch, I was still sobbing uncontrollably as he immediately put his arm around me.

“I got voicemails from my mom. She found out that I wasn’t staying with Lynda so she went looking for me. When she couldn’t find me she assumed that I was with you and called me a slut and a whore for spending time with you. I don’t know what to do anymore. I just don’t know what to do!” I sobbed, still too emotional to fully articulate what my mother had accused me of.

“Wait what? What did she say?” He asked pulling me closer and holding me tighter.

“She called me a whore because we spent the night together, she won’t believe me when I tell her nothing happened. She never believes me, that’s why I didn’t tell her I was coming here. It doesn’t matter. I can’t take it anymore! I can’t! It doesn’t matter what I do, it’s never good enough.” I choked between erratic sobs. In so much pain and agony from everything regarding my mother coming to a head with these hateful voicemails, I wailed: “I don’t even want to live anymore!”

At that I collapsed once again onto the floor, my head landed on his lap and he placed his hand on my shoulder as I cried it all out.  It was the first time I ever felt completely broken, open, and truly raw. I had done my best to keep my head up through out the life time of abuse inflicted upon me, but at that moment my spirit was so heavy I just didn’t want to go on. All I wanted to do was fade into nothingness.

(My hope had been once I turned 18 that my mother would back off and leave me alone, but instead things had only gotten worse. She had always threatened to kick me out of the house when I didn’t comply with her demands even from the time I was very young, but now that she wasn’t legally obligated to provide for me her threats intensified to the point where it was almost a daily occurrence that I was threatened with being kicked out onto the streets. I had my own car, and a steady job but my salary was too low to be able to afford an apartment on my own, yet too high for any sort of government assistance. Mom knew this, she knew I was stuck and used it to her complete advantage. I don’t think she expected me to find a place to live, or find someone who would challenge her behavior and treatment of me. Thankfully, I inadvertently had.)

“Kelli, you’re not a whore. It’s okay. Your mom doesn’t know what the hell she’s talking about, don’t listen to her. That’s not right. She shouldn’t treat you that way. You need to get out of there. That’s not a healthy environment for you to be in. You don’t need that.” He reassured me.

I looked through my tears into his eyes riddled with concern, sadness and an ever so slight tinge of anger and told him: “But I don’t have anywhere else to go. I can’t afford my own apartment on my salary, and I don’t really have any friends. Other than you, and Lynda, and… well that’s really everyone.”

He searched my face looking for something, or thinking to himself. “Are you SURE you don’t have anywhere else to go?” He asked.

“No… not really.” I answered honestly as I began to dry my tears and pulled myself up off of the floor on to the couch. We sat there silently for what seemed like an eternity before I stood, picked up my purse, keys, phone and headed toward the door not entirely sure what I was going to do, but silently hoping that an auto accident or some other means of quick and painless death would meet me.

“Where are you going?” He asked, as I headed toward the door.

I shrugged and replied: “I don’t know. Probably home. I don’t have anywhere else to go.”

He looked at me, and with a sigh said: “No… don’t do that. Stay… stay here. You can stay here.”

I looked at him, noticing the concern and worry that blanketed his face and asked: “Are you sure?”

To which he honestly replied: “Well no, I’m not sure. But we can work something out. Just don’t leave right now, or go back to that. You need to calm down.”

I looked into his eyes, and started to tear up for an entirely new reason. Here he was, this rough and tumble reckless man, taking me into his home against his better judgement for no reason other than he wanted to give me a safe place to stay away from my mother. I made my way back to the couch and sat next to him as he stared at the corner of the coffee table with an intensity I hadn’t seen from him before.

Again silence took over the room for an unusual amount of time before he eventually looked up at me and asked: “Are you going to be okay here by yourself? I really need to go, but I’m not going to leave you alone if you want to die.” He nearly whispered,  searching my face to see if I would answer him honestly.

“I’ll be okay. You can go.” I answered, honestly.

While I had been on the brink after listening to the voicemails from my mom, the fact that he cared about me enough to open his home quickly brought me back to reality. My life wasn’t truly all that bad, and there were many solutions to the problems that had just taken over and completely weighed me down. I was so tired of battling it alone, but with someone in my corner I found a renewed sense of strength and the much needed boost in courage to continue fighting.

“Are you sure? I don’t need to like take the razors out of the bathroom and hide the knives or anything do I?” He asked, still not sure I had recovered. “I don’t want to come home to your body bled out in the bathroom or something.”

“No. Thank you. I promise I’ll be okay.” I answered with a small smile.

“Well, if you need anything, and I mean ANYTHING, you call me. If I don’t answer call again and I will. I’m meeting my buddy, and then I have to go right to work so I won’t be home until pretty late.  If you get bored or really lonely come hang out.” He said as he stood up and headed toward the door. “Hey, your mom is wrong. I just want you to know that.”

I smiled with tears in my eyes as he turned to check on me one last time, then headed off to meet his friend.

We lived together from that day in November until February of the following year. There’s quite a story to go with the reason I ended up moving out, but it really deserves it’s own post. We went our separate ways from February until early April. I never really had any interest in pursuing anything further after the situation leading to my move, but I did owe him a substantial amount of money for rent necessitating a few more interactions. One thing lead to another and we wound up together. Maybe it was denial because I hadn’t yet processed everything that transpired between us in those first few months, maybe it was youthful idealism where I thought I could save him, maybe it was genuine love for the guy, or the fact that I couldn’t shake the instant attraction that I’d always felt for him? I don’t know anymore, it’s been too long and whatever feelings I had in the beginning have long since been replaced.

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