Last week I just about drove my girls crazy with repeated playings of Suzie Bogguss’s “Aces” CD. This week it is Reba’s “Greatest Hits III: I’m a Survivor”.
So many of the songs on this CD are saying something to me about Michael or Ryan or life in general, and “Myself Without You” continues to be one of the most important songs in my life. It has held that place of distinction for the last five years and always, always reminds me of just how strong I am and how much more of life there is to live, no matter what happens. I survived what seemed like the absolute worst-case ending with Michael and it laid me low for three days. I cannot, will not, and refuse to be broken by any man.
“The world still turns and the sun still burns
And that’s what I’ve learned without you
And the days roll on and my heart gets stronger too
Don’t think I didn’t love you
Just because I made it through
But I learned to love myself
Ryan works three blocks from my house. I wonder idly how many times in the past four years we have passed each other at the traffic light. He comes to work about the time I am leaving to take the girls to school. Have we seen each other in that vague unrecognized way that we all see hundreds of people each day?
Jennifer worries that him being so close will make this ridiculous affair even easier and more tempting. Ryan is not tied to his office, he comes and goes as he pleases and can easily spend an hour or two at my place without being missed by anyone. (Why do I never get involved with men who work by the clock and who are required to be in the same place nine hours a day? Chris owned his own business, Michael was on call and never worked a schedule, Theo was unemployed, and Owen ran his own non-profit. Perhaps it’s the personality type I attract and to which I am attracted – the free spirit who refuses to completely conform.)
Ryan thoroughly believes he is going to have the chance to live out his fantasies through and with me. He was playing poker with the neighborhood boys last night (this man is so traditionally, red-bloodedly, All-American it almost makes me laugh. It would, in fact, make me laugh if I wasn’t so set on finding a traditional, red-blooded, All-American man for myself) and wrote me a quick email during a break. He’d figured out the reason he’d impulsively asked about coming over to see me after the game: he’s always had the fantasy of hanging out with the vanilla guys all the while knowing he was going home to the “wildest, kinkiest, sexiest woman of all the guys.”
I tell you what… having an ego boost like that makes it hard to want to tell him he’s being silly and to go home to his wife instead. But I did. I saw the absolute uselessness of him living out this particular fantasy and quietly, successfully discouraged him. Put one in the “Common Sense Wins” column for me, please.