~Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Meet the Parents

Since Abraham's parents learned that he met both my mother and my father, they planned an impromptu road trip that just happens to go through the city. Coincidentally. And since they just so happen to be in the area, they thought they would stop by, you know, for the weekend. And maybe Abraham could bring me around?


"They must really want to meet me," I responded when Abraham relayed the story to me.

"You think?" he said sarcastically.

I wore my current favorite good-girl outfit: a yellow flowy top that was bestowed upon me from South Carolina Bestie, skinny blue jeans that are cropped just below the knee and black ballet flats. I put diamonds in my ears for good measure.

I alerted Abraham when I arrived at his house. He met me outside.

"You ready?" he asked.

Abraham had it easier than me. When he met my parents, he met them one at a time. Then he only had to smile for two hours and be done with it. This, this was an entire weekend of good behavior.

They greeted me with welcoming hugs. Abraham looks like his father. Anxious smiles all around.

We then headed to a local Mexican restaurant. Abraham quickly ordered a pitcher of margaritas for the table. The good ones. I felt sweet relief at the sight of tequila.

The conversation was very official, very Welcome to the Family. They compared meeting me to meeting their son-in-law. They commented on how nervous he was.

"We've been married for over 40 years," his father began. "And I do know how much easier being the same religion is on the relationship."

I knew my Christian Southern Belle status was an obstacle for these New York Jews. I just didn't think it would come up at the first meeting.

"I just want my son to be happy," interjected his mother.

"You do know that for children to be Jewish, the mother has to be Jewish?" the father continued.

I nodded wide eyed. I knew. It was the first thing anybody has ever told me when I said I was dating a Jew. If I got struck on the head and had amnesia, I'd remember that the mother has to be Jewish.

I'll be honest: I didn't like the pressure I felt. I was grateful that Abraham and I have already had this conversation, and we'd already decided on a solution that works for both of us. I was so glad I already knew the answer to the question that his father was asking. It relieved some of the pressure I felt.

But I never gave him an answer. I haven't even told my parents what we decided to do. I didn't want to tell this man something that I felt was so personal on the first meeting.

Abraham grabbed my hand under the table. I laced my fingers in the comfort of his. In the beginning of the relationship, he'd always whine when I reached for his hand. Now it's second nature to him to reach for mine.

His mom gasped.

"Look!" she said to her husband. She moved the pitcher of margaritas out of the way and pointed to our shoulders. "They're holding hands!" She was positively giddy.

Abraham had told me that he felt pressure to marry a nice, Jewish girl growing up, but this dissipated somewhere around 30. By 35, he was told they just wanted him to be happy.

He was. I am. We are.

~Monday, July 23, 2012

The Best Time I Got Fat

It happened all at once, yet not at all.

I got fat.

Fat to me is about 10 pounds. I know exactly how I got this way. Abraham joked that instead of doing the Couch to 5k, I did the 5k to Couch. It's been a year since I ran my last race, months since my last run. Abraham couldn't keep up with me, complaining of a hurt knee, and my geriatric dog just wanted to smell the river. So after 2 miles, we packed up and went home. Forever. 

Our nights were spent together with beers in our hands, at local bars, at concerts, at hockey and baseball games. Because our nights are spent together, I stopped buying perishable food. Perishable food! Also known as real food! Fruits and vegetables and cheese and meat! I switched from skim milk to organic soy milk, just because it lasts longer. When I did go to the grocery store, I loaded up on eggs, canned tuna and ramen noodles.

Abraham wasn't any better behaved. His house has dog biscuits, leftover matzo from Passover and a few canned goods. He keeps a jar of dark chocolate peanut m&ms on his nightstand because he knows I love them. He has no milk product, soy or otherwise.

The excuse is we're busy. Work. Kickball two nights a week. Parties. Friend invites. Sunday Funday. I can't remember the last time we've had a night in. Eating has efficiently become a social activity.

But my pants still fit, so it kept me in denial. How fat can you really be if you're wearing the same pair of pants?

Abraham and I have been invited to four weddings in six weeks. Last week I pulled out my beautiful dresses from last summer and laid them on my bed. Which to choose to wear? It quickly became evident. I would wear the dress that zips. Only none of them did. I'd get them all the way up to my breast and they wouldn't budge.

I got fat. There is certainly shame in no longer being able to fit in your clothes. I panicked. I called South Carolina Bestie and asked her how many tears would I have to cry to burn enough calories to fit in my dress. Turns out it was more than I had. I tried a corset with my dresses. Nada. I was just fat.

I called Abraham next. I told him my predicament. He heard my sniffles.

"Are you crying?" he asked.


"Are you lying?" he asked.


His voice got soft. He assured me I wasn't fat. I remembered what The Leader once told me, "If a guy really liked you, 10 – 15 pounds wouldn't make a difference." The Leader was right.

I told Abraham I wanted to start running again. He agreed. I said I needed to buy a fat girl dress this weekend for the first wedding.

"Anything you want."

I asked his roommate for dieting tips, knowing she was also in the midst of losing weight. "My boyfriend is responsible for 4 – 6 pounds," she told me. "It's a nice trade off though, isn't it?"

That's what everyone tells me when I say I got fat. They've been called "happy pounds" or "relationship pounds." But the way she phrased it—as a trade off—it soothed me.

"I'd rather be happy than skinny," I said.

"Me too."

The next day I dejectedly walked into Abraham's house after work. He stopped what he was doing and rushed across the room to greet me. He held me so tight. "You're not fat," he said. "I'm sorry you were upset last night and I couldn't be there for you. I love you."

It is a nice trade off.

We have since run 6 miles. We're starting back at the beginning of Couch to 5k, and he signed us up for a 5k in September. He told me he was proud of my running and my drive.

"Do you think I'll lose the weight?"

"And then some."

"What if I don't lose the weight? What if I look like this forever?"

"Then I'll still love you."

~Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Where are they now?


Light Facebook stalking years ago revealed that he is married. She's not as pretty as me. Talk about wasted tears. At least I got a blog out of it.


Conor sent me a text back in April late one night. He told me he inherited a lot of money and was now independently wealthy but didn't want to tell anyone. He fished around as to whether I had a boyfriend. When I said I did, he stopped responding. He's had the same girlfriend for about 3 years.


Facebook had the last laugh.


Jack contacted me once via LinkedIn. Unfortunately I was in a really horrible place, so I sent him a weird response (i.e. "I'm good! I followed your advice, but I got laid off! And now I have cancer!"). Naturally he never responded. Nor did he follow through on any of my LinkedIn connections for a job. I have since deleted him from LinkedIn.

The Musician

Abraham and I went to go see his band last week. On the way there I was like, "Uh, so you should know that five years ago I went on two dates with one of the band mates."

I couldn't tell if Abraham was jealous or not. I thought he may have been since he told our entire party, including people I've never met, that I went out with the Musician. But on the other hand, the band seemed a little sadder this time. Five years ago the band mates were in their twenties. Now they're in their thirties, still working their day jobs as servers and still playing the same songs at the same venues. Five years later and they are no more popular. Nothing has changed for them except for their receding hair lines.

I don't know if The Musician recognized me or not. I've changed a lot since then.


Several months ago S' step-mom phoned me. S was back in jail.

"When was he in jail?" I asked.

Apparently he was sentenced to several months in jail for beating up yet another girlfriend. And he was being ordered back in for violating his probation and appearing in front of the judge drunk.


Christopher. I don't know if he sold his email address or joined some marketing strategy, but I started getting those horrible, spammy emails from his address. The ones with a single link to Canadian Viagra.

I reported that his email address was hacked. I still got the emails. I sent him three emails kindly telling him to change his password. I still got the emails. So then I blocked him.

Valentine's Day he sent me a friend request on Facebook. I had deleted him after I dumped him years ago. I accepted and now he stalks from afar. LinkedIn reported a few months ago that he is now living in Illinois, so y'all are on notice.


I never heard from him since the night he dumped me. I've never looked him up. I don't want to know anything because I don't want to be sad. He will have to remain a mystery.

The Hungarian 

The Hungarian tried to have sex with me on our last date. I turned him down cold. I never heard from him again. Funny thing, it took me about 2 months to realize it.


No one has seen or heard from him in about a year. I've been tempted to send him a text to make sure he is alive, but it's not my place.


Statham now lives with the ex-girlfriend, who is no longer an ex. They came out to Abraham's tailgate about a month ago and we were all drinking together. She didn't speak to me, but Statham was his usual friendly self to Abraham and me. Everybody acted like nothing ever happened.

~Monday, July 09, 2012


Someone made a joke Saturday night and I'm 99.8% sure the joke was aimed at Abraham and not at me. But still it hit a sensitive topic: our beginning. Our beginning in which he was slow moving and I was inexplicably patient.

Two or three frozen margaritas and a gin and tonic later and we're laying in his bed, away from the person who made the joke.

"Did I pressure you to be with me?" I asked.


I adjusted myself in his sheets. The lights of his room were still on. "Did I pressure you? Because I flirted with you at the bar, and I made myself available to you, and I was here when you weren't sure."

"I'm a grown man who can make my own decisions," he said simply.

Free will. Oh yeah. Right. I didn't really consider that. I acted as if I had some super power that I had cast over him, absolving him from accountability.

The answer had satisfied me for the most part, but I still protested in circles.

"I love you. And you are overthinking things," he tried again. "Things are easy between us. It doesn't have to be complicated."

It's what I needed to hear to snap me out of it. He said the word "easy." It's the one thing so ingrained in me that I have to work hard to overcome it. I'm not used to easy. I don't trust easy. In my life, love never came easy.

We don't fight, a normal occurrence in healthy relationships, and I question it.

If it's easy, it isn't real.

"My father left when I was really little," I admitted quietly. It was the first time I spoke of any kind of fear. "What if you change your mind?"

Abraham sighed. "There are no guarantees. But I have no intention of changing my mind. I don't know what happened to you to make you doubt easy—and I'm sorry those things happened to you—but I love you and I'm here."

As he said this I burst into tears and cried in a way he hasn't seen me cry. I've usually gotten away with the one tear that folds over the lashes and silently slips down the cheek, but this, this was the ugly cry. My face crumpled into itself like Popeye.

Because he's right. He doesn't know. He doesn't know about S, but he knows something had happened that causes me to feel timid and unsure at times. Something happened that makes me think about things really carefully so I don't choose the same decisions I've made in the past.

To be honest, I don't trust him with that information. People who have healthy relationships their entire lives can't imagine the horrors of unhealthy ones, specifically why good people tolerate them. I don't want to have to explain to him my role in an unhealthy relationship. How years ago, I wasn't ready for Abraham.

But what I heard him say to me was that it was okay. Maybe the specifics aren't needed. It doesn't affect my day-to-day life, instead flaring like a flash in the pan. The tears were gone as quickly as they came.

"Does it matter how I got to you? How twisty the road was to you?


I believe him. It will be okay.

~Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Like a Glove

The days since the great unveiling of feelings have been easy. We're not saying those little three words frequently—it still feels a bit scary and overwhelming—but love is all around us.

Abraham: "Can you get me a refill while you're up, my love?"

Me: (After being teased) I think you've gotten too comfortable.
Abraham: That's what love does to me. Love makes me lazy and comfortable.

Me: (Kidding) You are expensive, boyfriend.
Abraham: My love is cheap.
Me: And easy. Heyo!
Abraham: Truth.

I guess we're trying love on for size. It's fitting.


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