I met Lewis the old fashioned way, a few weeks ago. I was invited out by our mutual friend Franciscus, first to sushi and then to singing at Show Off in Leicester Square. We both love theatre, we both adore gaming and other assorted geekery. We couldn’t keep from sitting next to each other; the casual brush of clothing and the gentle caress of fingertips can convey so much in the delicious early moments of a first attraction.
We went out a couple of times. He came over for films and pizza. He stayed over. We went to Franciscus’ house the next day for gaming, trying not to show we were hot from sharing the same bed, despite the fact that we were arriving together. Then I discover he still share’s the same house as his ex. I discover that he hates it and wants to move out into his own place. I discover that he cancels our dinner plans at the last minute to look after their cat. Yep, there’s a cat.
I like him, but several things charge into my head to spoil the glory of the initial attraction.
1. There’s an ex. An ex that he still lives with. An ex that now seems to delight in making his life as hellish as possible.
2. There’s a cat.
3. He’s not Wilt. The most stupid reason I could ever conceive, but it’s true. Lewis is handsome and sensitive, a little touch of the theatre-boy camp in an adorable way. Wilt was…Like a fire from heaven which lit me from the inside. Deliciously flawed, but still wonderfully whole.
Lewis is warm and sensitive, Wilt was a warrior – you had to remove his armour before the soft underbelly would reveal itself. He was strong in every sense. Sometimes when I look at Lewis I think a breath of wind might collapse his fragile inner core. Wilt was the sort of man who slings you over his shoulder and carries you through life’s problems.
But Wilt is gone. Gone and in all likeliness he’ll meet someone over in The States. He won’t be back in Europe for at least two years. And then? It’s very likely that we’ll never meet again, and even if we did…There are complications there. Complications in the Facebook update I saw in which he fully supported the right for Americans to bear arms. I don’t think our political leanings really align.
But then again, there are complications with Lewis too.
I always subscribed to the notion that when it was the right romance at the right time it would be as easy as leaves falling from a tree. The course of true love can and does run smoothly, sometimes. I may love the theatre but that’s where I think the drama should stay. I don’t need more of it in my day to day life. Especially not now. Not with job hunts and freelance work and interviews taking up all of my waking hours. I’m at a crossroads and I’m not sure where the next road will lead. It may sound self-indulgent or pretentious but I need time to work on me. To work with me. To discover what my next chapter is and how I want it to go.
In a strange sense, I don’t really want a man in there right now coming in and influencing that. In another, I’m too vulnerable right now to combat with fresh feelings of romance. I have problems. I have some big hurts and a lot of anger to heal. I don’t want to let myself get to a point, not now and not ever, where I define myself by my feelings; where the love of the romance eclipses my self-respect. When dependency becomes more attractive than independency, the balance of the relationship has been shattered and our own dreams become closed to us. That is not a position I could ever fathom myself being in.
And is it all really meant to be this complicated? I can’t help but feel with Lewis that there shouldn’t be the live-in ex, the last minute cancellations, the cat. But in truth, when he cancelled, I was just happy to have the evening to myself. I feel like I need to fall back in love with myself, and, you know, get another job, before I start looking to fall in love with anybody else.
That’s one plan, at least, which is delightfully simple.