Claiming My Bed Back

Sitting in the Village with my dear friend K, I munched on a taco while trying to keep myself together enough to stomach the meal. Don’t get me wrong – K is great company and usually says all of the things I wish I could say, but never work up the courage to actually speak. Perhaps in a few years when I’m her age, I will.

We had just finished catching up in her apartment (which if she ever decides to leave, I will claim before anyone else can) and thought to grab an inexpensive bite about town. There, we chatted about her upcoming weekend with the new boy she likes – semi-tall, charming, funny, great in bed and most importantly, for the first time in a while – she just simply likes him. It’s nice to see her blush and if he doesn’t work out, there will surely be more – but maybe, just maybe, this one will be something. As she usually does when she gets on a roll, she shared a rather adorable conversation they had post-bumping:

“We were laying in his bed, talking, my head was on his chest. After a while, he interrupted me and asked if my feet were hanging off the edge. I’m so used to my feet dangling, that it never occurred to me  – I didn’t even notice. When I can’t sleep, I always kick a foot out of the covers and it soothes me for some reason. But because he knew we were around the same height and I was lower down in the bed, my feet would be hanging off. It’s funny – sleeping habits. We are both so used to being single that we also both sleep in the middle of our beds – that doesn’t always work with two people!”

As she’s happily telling her story with a little hesitation (somehow talking about the happy things makes them seem like they’ll disappear), I thought about how I’ve never experienced any of those things: 1- I’m rather petite, so I can’t remember any instance where my feet are anywhere but tucked closely to my body, several inches from the edge of the bed, and 2- Even when I’ve been single, I’ve always kept to my side of the bed, leaving lots of idle space next to me.

Well, until last night that is.

I thoroughly cleansed my room of Mr. P – took out pressed sheets, reorganized my dresser drawers, bought some new candles, packed away his photos, notes and jewelry for safe keeping, and bought myself a new bouquet of fresh flowers. I threw open the curtains and let the cool Fall air breathe new life into my apartment. After indulging in some much-needed therapy: good food, Desperate Housewives and Friends (the show and the real things), read a few pages in my friend’s book club book of the month and went to settle into bed. Without thinking, I instinctively scooted over near the window, until I heard K’s words in my head and decided…

…it was time to claim my bed back.

This bed no longer smells of him and while he was the last man to lay in it, he won’t be the last. He used to have that corner and that pillow, but the cases are different and the space in my heart is healing. He used to sleep on his side and look at his BBerry at 4 a.m., waking me up prematurely. But not anymore, this room will stay dark until the morning creeps in quietly, not via his loud BBM alert. Only a few months ago, I made a rather significant commitment to this bed – buying it with my own hard-earned cash. The comforter, I bought. Along with the pillows and the sham. I make it up every morning, only to ruin it every night by my incoherent tossing and turning that never wakes me up, but looks like warfare in the morning. I pay for the room this bed sits in – and damn it, it’s my bed! Determined, I moved over to the middle and laid flat with my legs reaching for the corners. I stretched until I couldn’t anymore and closed my eyes, feeling myself easily drift to sleep in my new cemented position.

Unlike any night in the last week, I didn’t wake up once in the middle of night to put my heart to sleep. It slept just fine on its own, without any assistance and it stayed that way, nestled in a Queen mattress from Ikea. When my alarm went off at 8 a.m., I groggily wondered if I was still claiming my bed back, as I so intently sought to do hours before. I was happily surprised to find that not only was I sprawled out across my entire bed, but I had one arm dangling off the edge, too.

Looks like I’m claiming my bed back. And my single status, too.

Sex(less) & the City

Sometimes I wish I was a skank.

Pardon my language –but sometimes, I think it’d be easier. If I could just jump from one bed to the other, not feeling (or at least pretending not to) anything, having incredible orgasms, and not worrying if they would call or if it would turn into love –I think I’d be a lot happier.

If I could be just nonchalant and easy-going, enjoy great sex just as much as I enjoy great wine and travel –maybe I’d be a little more “cool” or one of those elusive girls that men are always drawn to. But then, again I wouldn’t care if men were drawn to me –because I’d be mysterious and aloof.

While I tend to be forward-thinking about many things, sex isn’t one of them. Like love (big surprise here, huh?), I tend to find sex to be this very intimate, personal, and powerful thing that should only be shared with two people who sincerely care about each other. I think it can be very stress-relieving and dirty-passionate too, but I don’t feel comfortable letting my inhibitions and my panties go –unless I’m committed and in love with someone.

This kind of mentality, in my opinion, makes me classy (or a prude) –but at the same time, it can make for some pretty lengthy kiss-less and sex-less periods. I plan on the payoff one day being well worth it –but sometimes it just flat out sucks.

Even though I know how serious I take intimacy, and even though I’m doing the 12-steps, I decided that part of trying not to be a love addict is taking the pressure off things. If I want to make out with some cute guy or if I want him to run his hand down my back (or thigh, or both?) –I should be able to do that without freaking out.

Right? Ehhh…

Mr. Unavailable and I had a little too much red wine on Friday night and we took our platonic friendship to a different level that involved some kissing, some holding, and some regrettable thoughts the next day…on my part anyways. So of course, like any good love addict, I then spent the rest of the weekend obsessing about what in the world I had done.

No, I didn’t have sex. No, I didn’t sleep around. No, I didn’t fall in love or fall in hate. No, I just acted on the naturally burning and ever-evolving desire inside of me. I was longing to be cuddled, to feel sexy, to feel the weight of a man pressed up against me, and to feel secure –so I took an opportunity.

The problem is –no matter how much recovery I go through or steps I take –kissing and making out and being physical –will always mean something to me. And while I don’t think this is a bad thing, I also don’t think it makes me very good at being “single.” I mean, even Julia Roberts couldn’t handle it in “Pretty Woman” – she ended up falling in love and packing up her sexy hooker boots (they’re coming back in style, yay!) and letting her guard down with Richard Gere –and we never blamed her once for it.

My friend L says I should be using this time in my life to “have fun.” In her terms and before she was in her relationship, this meant random drunken kisses and sometimes even sexual partners. I think my friend is beautiful and wonderful –and so much freer than I am. If she would have made out with Mr. Unavailable, it wouldn’t have mattered much to her the next few days…but for me, it consumed my weekend.

And it hurt me. He didn’t hurt me. The situation didn’t hurt me. The kissing and the fire didn’t hurt me. The friendship didn’t hurt me.

The thoughts hurt me.

The punishing myself for “letting go” or “trying something new.” The pit in the bottom of my stomach that continued to grow because I know it would never become anything more than just a friends-with-benefits (term I hate, by the way). Even if I didn’t want more, knowing that it wouldn’t be more –hurt. And it hurt that I thought of my actions and the experience the rest of the weekend –during drinks, at dinner, while shopping, while sitting at the laundry mat writing this entry.

So why do I feel guilty? Or is it that I feel rejected? Or betrayed? And if betrayed –by who? By myself? By my morals? I knew what cards were on the table and I willingly made the decision to play the hand I played. There was no poker face, no leading-on, no mystery, no question –we both knew exactly what we were doing and we both said what we expected.

If I had no expectations and wasn’t even certain of my feelings or of what it would mean to me –why does it hurt?