Shortly after my 22nd birthday, school and work were really taking up my time and energy, and I was really stressed out over my summer school classes.
But since I was so busy, I didn’t have much social time. Most of my girlfriends had boyfriends or didn’t have time or money to go out, which often left me hanging out alone. I fell into a rut of cooking myself dinner and then taking myself to a movie, before coming home to study. Sometimes, it was nice being alone, but I knew I needed some social interaction.
Austin and I were talking a lot and things were going well. There were only two weeks left until we got to see each other. I was really excited to see him, but I was scared, too. I loved talking to him on the phone, but I was being reminded of my days with Adam. Since we weren’t in the same state, we couldn’t do those little things together, like run errands or grab lunch. Austin and I were lonely, and I wondered if our miseries were just clinging to each other.
Austin had met a few guys through his job and was starting to go out a little bit. I wanted him to make friends, but I was curious to know if he was meeting girls and possibly sleeping with them. Although him and I weren’t exclusive, I didn’t feel like I was in a position to ask him about it. I knew there was no way I could smoothly ask, “Sooooo did you meet any cute girls tonight?” I knew it would only come across as jealousy, because it was.
At the same time, I felt in control since I wasn’t telling Austin about any guys in my life, because there were none. I started to worry that I was respecting Austin too much by not putting myself out there. But I was going to wait until our visit to see how I felt. He said he wanted to have a “talk” when I got to Dallas. Depending on what we talked about, I knew I didn’t want to be the one waiting on his calls and avoiding dates if he wasn’t doing the same for me.
The other part of the conflict was the whole me-moving-to-Dallas idea. I was extremely flattered that he was thinking about it, and even more excited that he was telling me. The problem was, I didn’t want to move to Dallas. I hadn’t been there yet, but I had wanted to live in Los Angeles my entire life. I had a job lead there and had been searching for apartments online.
The other half of the problem was premature, but of course I’d been thinking about it. If I couldn’t agree to move to Dallas, where would the relationship go? It wasn’t fair because I would be sacrificing my dream of living in Los Angeles, but I knew Austin would not see it that way.
I knew the best thing for me to do at that point was to stick to my original plan to work, graduate, move to Los Angeles and see what would be there for me. I thought Austin was a great guy, but I wanted to leave it up to fate.
That same week, I had a dream about Eddie and Paige. In my dream, they came into Abercrombie and said hey to me. Although that was pretty much the gist of it, it was a setback. It made me wonder why the whole thing with Eddie happened in the first place. I wondered what he was doing. I began to miss the fun we had together.
Summer has always been a hard time for me to be single. I dated Adam over the summer and then Eddie. I had many summer flings, including Zach. That summer combined with my extreme loneliness was bad for me. It made me desperate for company and it made me miss Adam and Eddie.
I needed to go on a date, bad. One night I asked Austin if we were still having that “talk” he mentioned the week before. Of course, typical Austin, said he never said we were going to have a talk, but that he was just going to convince me to move to Dallas instead of LA.
Later that night, Austin called me and we had a meaningless conversation. He had me on speaker phone for the whole conversation, which was annoying because I could hear myself talk but could barely hear him. He was making and eating dinner while we talked, which was okay, but it made me feel like he could barely fit me into his busy schedule, and I knew Austin was not that busy.
During our conversation, he started to get rude. Austin was making fun of me for organizing my closet and shit. Sometimes I seriously wanted to be like, look dude I am not the loser here. So out of nowhere he was like “well I have to go take the trash out so that means I have to get off the phone.” Like we were in the middle of a fucking conversation! So he can tell I’m pissed and his defense is that we had been on the phone for one hour. I was thinking wow, what’s it to you because you haven’t even been paying attention. So he said he’d call me the next day during his lunch and I just hung up on him.
I wasn’t going to answer my phone if he called me. Not to be a total bitch about it, but if he didn’t want to fucking call me, then don’t call me. Because I didn’t want to hear the fucking bitching. If you’re going to do something, then go balls out, don’t half-ass it.
A week later, I cried on my drive home from work. I felt like I’d cried so much that summer, but I couldn’t pinpoint why. I had several things pulling me down. I was still excited to see Austin, but my fears were growing worse. Whenever I had flown to see a guy, he’d left me. This had happened on several occasions, Adam, Nik, Gabe…
I couldn’t handle Austin leaving me. The weekend before, we went two days without talking—the longest we’d gone since he left, and I was devastated. The thought of never talking to him again was miserable. We’d grown really close in the last month. I felt really good about the way things were going; Austin was my best friend.
But I was still scared.
There were things I was afraid to tell Austin. I felt pressure to “go with it” since we were so far away and we were not dating. But my heart couldn’t just go with it. I was trying so hard not to fall for him, harder than ever before. I was so afraid of getting hurt from him, again. I was afraid of getting hurt by anyone.
Austin had already talked to me about his loneliness, saying he wished someone was there when he got home from work. But he didn’t just want anybody. He talked to me about moving to Dallas over Los Angeles. I laughed to keep my heart out of it, but I couldn’t lie, and say I hadn’t thought about it.
But his excuse was, “you’ll be closer to me.”
I couldn’t move somewhere that wasn’t where I really wanted to be just to be near someone who wasn’t my boyfriend, could I?
What I was most afraid of was getting used to Austin’s calls. We hadn’t talked everyday like that since we’d been dating. I just wished he’d tell me more, but I figured he was afraid.
I was too, but not of that.
I was still afraid he’d meet that Dallas girl, whoever she would be. I was scared the only reason he was talking to me was because he had no other girl. He said he didn’t realize what he had until he lost it, but who knew?
I thought the trip to Dallas would tell me a lot, so I need to stick it out until then, and we’d be able to talk it out in person.
Posted on November 22, 2010, in The Ingredients and tagged Austin, college, college life, Dallas, dating, fighting, heartbreak, Holly A. Phillips, How to Make Lemonade, humor, life, love, relationships, sex, summer love, The Bitter Lemon, twenty-something, writing. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.