Forgetting an Attachment

It’s a double entendre, that title. Earlier today, I talked about fully letting go of Sam. Then, I forgot to add all the tags I normally add so that the readers that normally read me couldn’t find me….. like forgetting to attach a picture to an e-mail when basically all you’ve said in the e-mail is “here’s a picture” and still forgot to send it. Basically, I’m writing another entry to notify my readers that there’s a new entry. The writer reader relationship in the digital age. I hope we’re in love, otherwise this web site is me being Pepe Le Pew. I am not that desperate.

I was amused when I was in Facebook Jail that I watched two women fight over my picture. They weren’t fighting over the right to ask me out. They were fighting over whether kd lang was hotter than me. I didn’t pay attention to the outcome.

Fuck yes I did, are you kidding me? I flat out won. I knew I would. People have called me a better looking kd lang since I cut my hair short back in ’95. I don’t see it, but a hell of a lot of other people do. I think it’s the brown hair and brown eyes, but mostly that’s where it ends…… except that most lesbians my age have the same resting bitch face. Maybe we look like each other in that way that when you live with someone for a long time, people think your facial expressions look alike. Therefore, it’s not even that we look like each other. It’s because we’re from the same tribe.

When I was a kid it was straight person code for “I know you’re a lesbian.” That amused me to no end, and I have gotten a lot of mileage out of it. I also can’t think of a universe in which it’s a good idea to tell you which straight people have said it, but that’s the funniest part of all. God, it sucks to be you.

Now that kd isn’t popular broadly and straight people have lost interest, I don’t get it that often. But put me in a room where everyone and their pets have listened to all her music on repeat since college and I am begging to get away from the attention. A stroke to the ego never hurt anyone, but after a while it gets embarrassing. I love attention to bits, but I microdose.

I actually think that’s why I was always so bubbly whenever Sam was around, because I was alone the rest of the time. It wasn’t that I wasn’t off doing my own thing and obsessing over her. It was that by the time she worked all day and put dinner on the table for the week, enough time had gone by that my social battery was recharged. I think it would have been a big shock for her to spend a long time with me to know that I am not bubbly in the slightest. The one thing that would never have changed, and hundreds of people will attest to this because they saw it with Dana for eight years, is the energy for me when Sam walked into a room. Time would just stop.

I had been married to Dana for four years before the accompanist at our church knew we were a couple. This is because Dana wasn’t a singer, and I drove myself to church so that I could sing and she could sleep in. When she walked into the sanctuary, all the joy rushed into my face, and it got warm. The accompanist said she just assumed that Dana and I must not be that close because I was always so happy to see her.

Quite the opposite. When we’d been best friends for three and a half years, we’d learned to talk with our eyes. She was everything I’d ever wanted and more. Neither one of us could breathe and not have the other one feel it. I didn’t tell her for a long time, because I knew I would be playing with fire. That I could destroy the most stable relationship in my life by losing myself to her, even if I was supposed to because relationships are all about compromise.

Our relationship did end, and it was traumatic. But I would go back in time and do it all over, knowing it either could or would end the same way. There are lessons I learned from Dana that she was there to teach me, because she’s the one in my life I felt was capable of doing so. Cooking was an authority I let her own. If we were in a professional kitchen, it was “yes, Chef.” Of course there were a couple of exceptions. Of course there were. But by and large, we were a dynamic team who could turn on a dime because when seconds counted, we could say things with a look. We could anticipate each other’s movements, because we had done it day in and day out for years at our house without missing a beat. It didn’t matter how a pro kitchen was laid out. Improvisation was our forte….. because Dana was loud. (I can’t wait until she sees that line and I hope it lights up her face.)

I didn’t just want any woman, I wanted Dana. It was obvious to everyone from the start, and our relationship lived on hope for quite a while in each of our minds, not knowing exactly how much platonic love had made room for romance while the other one dreamt.

I could have asked her so many times when we were alone, but I did not want to set the ball rolling on an affair, because that’s something that would have changed me and taken me away from who I was. No, if I was going to risk everything, I had to be sure.

I did and I won big. Just Kings full over Aces. To be clear, we did have an affair. We admitted our feelings to each other, and eight hours later, we told the people we were in relationships that we loved them, but that we were too close to each other to make it work with them anymore. They were unsurprised by this knowledge, and yet I apologize for the enormous amount of time it took for me to make my decision, literally and metaphorically. I’d cheated on my then girlfriend for eight hours, but I’d been leaning more on Dana for emotional support than anyone I’d dated for YEARS at that point. The clue phone was stalking me obsessively and I wasn’t picking up. Thank God I eventually did.

It took me two years to get it together, and eight hours for my life to absolutely fall apart. It was traumatic and painful for a higher purpose. We were both in relationships that were just fine. We could have been happy for a lifetime with them, but it wouldn’t be the fit we had. We weren’t breaking up with our significant others because there was anything wrong with them. Tokyo and Los Angeles are both beautiful cities but you’ll be miserable if your partner never wanted to come on the trip.

It wasn’t that they were wrong. They were wrong for us. We wanted cherry blossoms and strong matcha. They wanted Milk Bar.

Dana and I wanted an attachment we’d never forget, and that has been true. It was worth it to find the love of my life for a short time than never to have experienced a love like that at all. I reached out for fantastic, and I found it.

There’s one picture I love of Dana at my sister’s engagement celebration brunch at Brennan’s in Houston. She’s wearing a fabulous outfit, shoes, and jewelry that we spent the day shopping for, just giggling and laughing like we invented it. We’re at one end of the table smiling, and my mother is on the other….. also smiling. At the time, it was my favorite picture we took to display in our house.

Now, it is a beautiful artistic representation of what marriage looks like for me now….. my wife and I on one end of the table smiling, and my mother on the other.

It’s a shame I forgot the attachment.

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