~Friday, October 21, 2011

Night After Night

I was horrified. HORRIFIED. I have thrown up 100% of the nights I spent at Abraham's house. I did the math.

I sat slumped over my desk, doing my best to just. sit. still. I had to work over the weekend to make up for this; I knew that much.

Abraham commiserated with me via text. He had stolen out to his car to take a nap that afternoon. Abraham was great through the whole ordeal. He's the hero of the story. I'm certainly not.

The thought I'm not ready kept circling my mind. I am not ready for love. I am not ready for a real, live, grown-up relationship. If I was, I wouldn't have done something so childish as to get stupid drunk and consequently stupid sick. Here was a boy I liked and he's already seen me at my absolute, absolute worst.

As the days passed, I still heard from Abraham. Every day.

"He's still talking to you? You may have met your match," laughed Schmoozer. It was Schmoozer's birthday and we were at a café sharing a piece of birthday cake. My present to him was the story.

"You wouldn't have taken care of me?" I asked curiously. Surely, a friend such as Schmoozer who knows me better would have taken care of me.

"I wouldn't even give you one of my spare bedrooms. I would have stuck you on that shady couch downstairs in my house that everyone is afraid of. I would have also made you clean up your own mess. And I would have made you leave as soon as you were half-drunk instead of drunk."

He described to me the different girlfriends who have thrown up in his house and how he put them in cabs or driven them to friends' houses to get rid of them. He talked about kissing the one girl who disappeared for a little bit and then discovering that she had vomit breath. He said he would have given me a 24-hour kissing ban and that Abraham was a better man than him.

"Your BF said he would let me yak in his bathtub as long as it was a one-time occurrence."

"I could see him being okay with that," chewed Schmoozer.

"Yeah, he said it's because he's done that to other people before."

"That sounds about right."

"I bought Abraham a new bathmat. I'll give it to him the next time I see him. It's one of those orthopedic ones that feels all squishy between your toes. But I couldn't remember the color of his original bathmat."

Schmoozer laughed again and shook his head. "He's still talking to you and you bought him a bathmat. You two are made for each other."

It had been two weeks since we had seen each other and the whole horrible incident. I was sitting with friends as I saw him stroll into the bar. I was tucked away in a booth in a corner. He didn't see me. I watched him go through the bar and talk to various people.

The boys I were with mentioned Abraham and his pitching skills. "Sarah's boyfriend puts a good spin on the ball. His pitches are tricky," said one guy.

I whipped my head around. "Wait, what?"

I didn't know who knew what. After I left with Abraham two weeks ago, I had not spoken to anyone or left my apartment. I spent the time drying up from the booze. But I know the Leader was probably there when I stumbled out of the bar hand in hand with Abraham and I know how quickly rumors start when he's around.

I moved to another table of friends and sat catching up with them. Abraham was standing on the patio with his back to the window. I was always aware of where he was. But we usually don't talk until flip cup starts. I didn't want to change the protocol.

As I'm talking with a friend, he turned around and peered through the window. I found him staring at me before he quickly turned around. He was looking for me too.

I took that as my cue and got up and went outside to the patio and began talking to the people next to him.

I found the Leader. "Hey, three different teams have come up to me and asked me when flip cup is starting," I told him. We again set up the tables. I moved the tray of free shots to the side.

"Bring those here," ordered Abraham.

I put several paper cups of shots in front of the two of us. He lined them up.

"We're going to play King of the Hill. You ready?" he asked me.

"Ready."

We picked up each shot and downed it and then flipped the tiny paper cups. He won. Then we moved over to the flip cup table and played. I told myself I wasn't going to act differently around Abraham after sleeping with him, but as the shots and flip cup took effect, I found myself casually grazing his butt with my hand. He didn't protest.

As the night wore on, we kept an eye on Abraham's watch. Instead of spending all night at the bar hanging out, we were both counting down until an acceptable time to leave. Midnight, he decided.

"It's 11:46. Close enough," he said.

"Let's go."

We raced out of the bar without saying goodbye to anyone. In front of the bar, he returned to his previous routine. He looked down and shuffled his toe in the ground. "You okay to drive?"

"Are you asking to ask, or is this an invitation?"

"It's an invitation."

"Let's go."

It was like seeing his house for the first time. In his bedroom, I pulled out my bag and presented it to him.

"I got you something."

He pulled out the bathmat. "You didn't have to do that. I washed the old one and it turned out fine."

"Abraham, your bathmat died a valiant death. Just take this one."

He crossed the bedroom and entered the bathroom and dropped it on the floor. He stepped on it, looked at me sitting on his bed and smiled. "It feels nice. Do you think I can have two bathmats?"

"You can have as many as you like."

He pushed it in front of his sink. "I like it here."

"That's a good place for it."

He left the bathroom and walked back to me sitting on his bed. He cupped my chin and kissed me. I love the whoosh before the first kiss. The rush of excitement I feel as his face approaches mine. The adrenaline of Things To Come.

He climbed on the bed, continuing to kiss me. They were soft, gentle kisses. Kisses being given for the sake of it: without demand and without expectation.

When Lawyered first heard about the bar make out, he did a double take. "He kissed you for an hour without making a move? What person our age kisses like that anymore!?" he hollered. He then told his fiancée, who reacted similarly.

Lawyered made me feel like something was wrong with lingering on first base, but it never occurred to me the very first night or even the present night that things shouldn't be this way. We had entire conversations punctuated with kisses. He told me about his day in between kisses. And in the days that followed, it wasn't the sex I would think about; it was the kisses.

Afterwards, I laid on his shoulder.

"I couldn't find you tonight," he admitted.

"I was there. I was in a corner booth when you walked in. You didn't see me. But I knew where you were. I always knew where you were."

He puffed out his chest. "I almost got you to go home with me that first night." He was proud of himself.

"You never asked. You asked if I was okay to drive. You never explicitly invited me. Had you, I would have gone."

"I did. I asked. I just asked very quietly."

I nestled into him. "Are we going to go on a real, live date now?"

"I don't know," he paused. "I'm Jewish. There's a lot of pressure from my family that I marry someone Jewish." He never asked me what I was, but I guess he already knew. I already knew about him, but it was from my Facebook snooping. It didn't bother me.

We had been sidestepping the religion talk for awhile. The previous week when he traveled home to be with his family, I asked him if he had any big plans. He declined. I only knew it was for Rosh Hashanah because of the Someecards.com email I received. He had the opportunity to tell me and he didn't.

"Does that mean never?" I asked quietly.

"No, not never."

"What are you looking for?"

"Nothing."

He was making this hard. He doesn't like talking about dating. It makes him squirmy, both that first night at the bar and again tonight.

"Okay, I didn't ask the right question," I said. "What are you open for?"

"Anything."

He asked the same questions of me.

"I know what I don't want. I don't want to be the girl from kickball you hook up with." I paused and looked at him in the darkness, "I chose you."

"That's sweet," he said genuinely. He reached his arm around me and stroked my hair.

I stopped asking questions. I didn't want to ask anything that I wouldn't like the answer to.

"A bunch of us are meeting Saturday morning for an impromptu game of kickball. I'm making hunch punch. Would you like to come?" I asked.

Abraham sighed. "I would. Any other weekend I would join you, but I can't this Saturday."

"Is it because of Yom Kippur?"

"Yes." He seemed relieved that I asked about it and he could talk about it. I could feel him relax underneath me. "I can't have any food or water, so I'm just going to camp on my couch and watch football."

"What's it for?"

"It's an atonement of your sins."

"For how long? From sun up to sun down?"

"No. It's for 24 hours."

"WHAT?"

He in turn asked me questions. Whereas I asked superficial questions like whether he liked dogs, Abraham's questions were much more serious in nature. He asked about my family, trying to determine whether we were of an acceptable caliber. I realized he knows a very specific, very irresponsible aspect of me. He still doesn't know me. He doesn't have the same security in me that I have in myself.

I gave him credit for regarding me seriously and asking those questions. Abraham's deliberate; I'm capricious. He's hesitant. I'm hopeful.

24 comments:

Bathwater said...

I got to tell you, I don't like how this is going. It sounds too clinical. But then again I am not religious and take few things with any type of seriousness.

WannabeRunner said...

Well, I'm hooked. Sweet of him to be so cool about the Exorcist scene from last time, but it sounds like religion might be the deal breaker?

KingofHearts said...

It sounds awesome. I'm loving your blog which I found about a month ago. Your blog kinda has a different feel to it, its cool.

Je m'appelle Danielle said...

So will your next post be a big reveal that your becoming a Jew, ah la Charlotte?

I've never been able to work it out with religious guys. If they believe in something, thats fine, I don't care. I believe in science and thats never going to change. Even though I don't make a big deal about it, it always becomes a big deal to someone, or pressure from his family.

I think its weird to narrow your search for your sig other to only a specific group of people for which the only common denominator is religious beliefs.

Anonymous said...

Figure out how much of a dealbreaker religion is. I know from watching my sister be involved with a guy who's Jewish. It's heartbreaking when you get in too deep to realize that it will end. She would have been better off to not have invested that time....even though the guy was a great guy....he didn't see himself married to anyone who wasn't Jewish.

crazytownusa said...

open communication is the basis of any relationship and you guys have gotten off on the right start - hey, i'm going to party it up, barf on you and then he told you he wanted to marry a jew. you're both entitled right?

truth be told, it was my ONLY requirement in dating, that we be the same religion. it's not as important to me as it is to my parents and i made choices.

had i met the right man that didn't believe what i did and wasn't willing - at the very least - to raise our family as such, i'm not sure i could have imagined a future.

that being said, think about whether or not you will (both) eventually be up for a compromise without giving up yourself. because that's a deal breaker.

da3d2ac8-3880-11e0-9bda-000bcdcb471e said...

Oh boy. Long time reader, very infrequent commenter. I can relate to your dating life since I have been on over 100 first dates the 12 years I dated. Thanks tot a last ditch effort on chemistry.com, I met my fiance and got engaged at the ripe old age of 24. Yes, I had to go through a lot of assholes. The boyfriend before the fiance was Jewish. I am catholic AND half arab. His family knew about me and that I was catholic but didn't know about the arab part. To make it easier for him, I erased any mention of my ethnicity from facebook. Didn't matter. His mom didn't like me and his sister was a huge bitch to me, even though she loved throwing herself at all guys, except for jewish guys since she wasn't interested. Anyway, I wasted 7 months with him and his similar non-committal answers only to find out he was a chubby chaser and that I wasn't the only chubby girl on his radar. However, I should thank him for being a perpetual liar since if I hadn't broken up with him, I wouldn't have met my fiance who is everything I wanted and even more. Oh, and he's irish catholic. It just worked out that way, I wasn't aiming for it!

da3d2ac8-3880-11e0-9bda-000bcdcb471e said...

Ha ha! I realized I typed 24. Actually, I meant to type 34!

Red Stethoscope said...

Listen, the religion may be a potential issue, but he sounds SO into you. He kept calling after you threw up...a lot...and showered with your clothes on! I say try to work it out, because this sounds very promising indeed.

Paige Jennifer said...

I double dog dare you to wear a ginormous cross when you go out with him again, preferably one with the body of Christ. Of course, this is purely for my own entertainment.

Eleni Zoe said...

"Abraham's deliberate; I'm capricious. He's hesitant. I'm hopeful."

I loved that. I also love that it sound like you would make a really good team.

The religion thing is something that I think about a lot. It can work and it can't work. I think the it can work camp would argue that as long as you both respect each other's beliefs, there shouldn't be a problem.

Emma said...

I'm not Jewish. I've dated two Jewish guys.

One, his mother just hated me and I was never accepted as part of his life. It sucked because generally parents LOVE me. His house was so weird and sterile, despite being very nice and there was certain cutlery I wasn't allow to touch because I wasn't Jewish (?!). It made me feel unaccepted for something I never though was important. Hated it.

The second, his family was much more accepting but I was always wary and worried about the future and what if we have kids? Do they have to be Jewish? I'm very Atheist so I wasn't sure how much I liked the idea.

Overall, not the most positive of experiences for me.

J said...

Hmmm. Religion is always a tricky area to navigate. I think things sound promising, but I would just urge you that, if, at any point, there are signs that his family won't accept you or he won't be able to stand up to his family, to heed those warning signs. I have a friend who is Jewish and dated a guy whose family is Daoist. They never fully worked out the issue that his family wasn't thrilled about her and that his religion was important to him and isn't inclusive of those who don't subscribe to it. They lived together for two years and she just moved out. They're still together and trying to work it out, but I can't help but wonder if she could've saved herself a lot of heartache by not ignoring these issues that she knew of right off the bat.

j said...

Despite the religion issue, this sounds like it is headed in the right direction.

Breeza said...

That's a tough situation. Just take it day by day would be my advice.

Private Asian Girls said...

No matter what the issue there is behind this story, I don't care. I just love the way you write it. It makes me want to read and read until I finish it.

Scrumps said...

The way you write Sarah is awesome. Every word you write is believable and I am so pleased I found your blog when I was probably at one of my lowest points. Because it helped me. A lot!

So - I like the sound of Abe. He sounds like a good guy. And one who's definitely thinking about the long term - otherwise he wouldn't have brought up the religion issue. However, I would be cautious too. It's the worst feeling in the world to get in too deep and lose it because of something that you knew at the start.

(I love how none of my comments never offer any constrcutive advice - apologies!).

Anonymous said...

A new reader to your blog (although first time commenter) and am loving how this story unfolds. Think he sounds lovely. Thought it was interesting that he chose to say that it was the pressure from him family to marry within the religion rather than his own desire...

Can't wait for the next instalment.

L.

Anonymous said...

P.S. I found your blog through Northern Lass' but hers seems to have disappeared. Do you know where she's gone?

L.

Charlotte said...

I really hate to generalize, but I've seen this all too many times before (and it's quite flattering anyway): Jewish men know how to treat their women (oddly enough, I'm half Jewish and haven't been able to find a NJB=nice jewish boy to make the ol' man happy). I'm not remotely shocked that he takes his time with you, calls you after the vomit incident, and kisses you so passionately. Hold on to that hope. I mean, the religion may come up at some point; it just depends on whether or not he's going to allow the pressures of his family get to him. This sounds promising!

Sarah said...

Anonymous - Northern Lass shut her blog down. I miss her too :(

heisschic said...

my parents both teach bible study (hard core catholics) and the bf is jewish.

as with any relationship, you can only work through it if both people want to.

Dawn said...

I should have commented on this earlier...

I'm Jewish. Observing a few holidays (the big ones, like Yom Kippur) does not make you "religious." It makes you "traditional" -- as in, following the traditions of the religion into which you were born.

If Abraham were religious, he wouldn't be eating or drinking in establishments that you go to. He wouldn't be touching you. He wouldn't be interested in you.

I have a number of Jewish friends who have married non-Jews. Can I say that the families were thrilled? No. But each family realized that the PERSON (the person who their child LOVES) is more important than the religion of the person.

Gretta James said...

I am slightly concerned by the hesitance. He can't date you but he can shag you as much as he likes. I don't like that. Sorry CHick. I just don't.

Gretta

 

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