Saturday night. We meet at 9 pm around a table, one hour before the concert, we have wine, eat some Spanish tapas at a cheap place and we each pay for what we ordered. That is what independent single ladies (struggling to make ends meet in a slow economy) do these days.
“I can´t understand people and relationships anymore as we grow older. You meet someone, you hit it off and then one of them (often the man) draws back, scared, protective of his or her own space and life. Two days have gone by since I heard from him last. This leaves me wondering and waiting anxiously and I hate that”.
“You can´t feel married to your lover or at least you shouldn’t”. Crushes are supposed to be fun! I said. “Can’t you just love yourself and embrace what life has to offer without obsessing about another man so soon? You might meet someone else tonight”.
But women in this state don´t want to hear that. They want to run into their crush and if they don´t, they become a real pain in the butt for their friends. All night, all week. Period.
It was obvious that we were just her “in between” plan until her real plan unfolded. She kept looking at her phone over and over to see if anything came up. Meanwhile, she took advantage of every minute that she had on a one on one basis to bring up her topic: him and the hypothetical reasons for this silence.
“But why? Why can´t I have a crazy crush and obsess about someone if that is what I am feeling right now? Isn´t a crush supposed to be a crazy obsessive thing? Why can´t I have sex with my ex boyfriend? Why can’t I think about a second chance with him? What are all those rules about second parts not being good and crushes never evolving into love? What is it about people needing time to feel and reconnect with themselves after a break up? Really, who the hell wrote those rules and why do we have to obey them?” I must say she had a point. There is no reason to follow rules when it comes to human emotions so I shut up and finished my Chardonnay.
Aggie was also there, she is about to get a divorce but she does not find the guts to hand out the memo to the recipient. She can’t stand her life next to her husband anymore and it is painful to witness the situation from up close. It is sad to have to testify and confirm that everything is so done between two people that once decided to get married and build a family. This reality reminds me that everything comes to an end, us included. She says that his lack of drive is driving her mad and that she now needs a man that takes control and has more initiative… whatever. In the end, when you are out of love, any excuse will do.
Crocodile used to ignore me altogether. He would not value any of my qualities but could go for hours taking about my shortcomings. That is all we see when we don´t love someone: shortcomings, imperfections, perhaps our own.
The same thing happened to Anne. We met briefly at the Bahamas when she and her husband were trying to save their marriage. I would spend hours arguing with crocodile on the phone while in Paradise (how fun) but while I walked up and down the white sand beach, I was able to observe Anne and her now ex husband. They were a picture of Prince Charming and I a few years back in Mexico. A young couple away from their first baby trying to reinstate the spark in their relationship. They looked so done.
Last Thursday she posted a picture of her civil wedding. She got married in Paris to a famous interior designer. Congrats.
When we do love, shortcomings don´t bother us, we accept them with open arms. But here we were, another case of two people getting passed each other and another case of two people not daring to get to that point. Another broken promise and another proof that happily ever after is not what we need these days but what is it that we need exactly?
When Saturday night comes, expectations rise that is for sure.
I was feeling quite disgusted myself because being the extremely sensitive person that I am, I could feel for all of us. Seven single ladies (myself included) in their late thirties out on a Saturday night while their cats waited for them at home knowing that they would be back that same night.
Anna was looking pretty tonight, really pretty and I had spent hours getting ready for something that never happened. At least not the way I had envisioned.
But we were alive. And free.