((gulp)) We're having lunch tomorrow.
After months of praying and pondering whether or not I should reach out, I made a very Lisa-esque decision, pulling my phone out in the middle of the produce department at the grocery store and just doing it without thinking. Catch up over lunch? Clear the air? I realized it was a holiday; he'd be out of the office, and I'd have a whole day before a response.
He answered within an hour anyway. "That would be great..."
It was at that point I realized it was going to be just the two of us for the first time in a long while. No spouses, friends, or coworkers monitoring every surface-level, socially acceptable lip service that comes out of our mouths. Our first opportunity in a very long time to be painfully honest. On one hand, it feels totally natural. I have a strange sense of peace. This is someone with whom I've had a lot of these sorts of conversations. Been there, done that many times before.
But every once and awhile, I'm hit with the realization that I'm allowing myself to be once again vulnerable with the one person on this planet who has hurt me more deeply than any other. The thought terrifies me so much, I get physically nauseated.
(Oh, and did I mention I also realized after hitting send that I'm pretty sure I sent that email on his anniversary? Mmm, hmm. Yep. Perfect, Lisa. Well done. 364 other days to choose from, and you inadvertently pick that one. Somewhere, Sigmund Freud is laughing his pants off...)
If I'm honest, his positive response to my email alone healed some stuff. He had absolutely no obligation to do this; he could've very easily avoided it. He chose, instead - and rather quickly - to jump right in. Progress. This could be a very, very good thing. Healing. Closing the door on the past. Moving on. Letting go.
He's going to meet a stronger Lisa than He is accustomed to, that's for sure. I've grown and matured a lot in 15 years. But still, I have to remind myself not to hide my flaws or revert to old, bad habits. I will be authentically me, even after feeling such enormous rejection. I will celebrate myself, honor myself, including my areas of weakness. Time to take that self esteem I so vehemently preach out for a real test drive.
Translation: My God, I'm absolutely petrified.
The thing that scares me the most about tomorrow is a collision of both worlds. This is someone with whom I frequently discussed the future; specifically kids. He is the father of six; my miscarriages will come up. I can handle looks of heartbreak and pity from pretty much anyone; bounce them right off that crusty exterior I've built. But Him? He's way too close; I'm not going to be able to ping his response off so easily. It could very possibly break me right in half. ::insert emotional breakdown here::
Oh, good. This was a great idea, Lisa...
Mad props to my husband, by the way. You should've seen his face when I told him I needed to meet with Him to talk. "WHY?!?!?" I was honest; we had a long talk about good, old-fashioned Daddy Issues, what that first guy means to a woman who never had a strong male figure in her formative life, and why I need to come to terms with all of that. "I need to forgive. I need to heal. And I need that corner of my heart back, because it belongs to you." For the first time ever, I think he saw a parallel between my relationship with Him and his own relationship with his ex. He's since stopped making cynical comments about her, and he's no longer as knee-jerk angry at Him. Growth! After admitting he doesn't necessarily understand why we need to meet in person, he trusts me, and he's okay with me doing whatever I need to do.
My husband - my trusting marriage - makes me one insanely proud wife. No matter what happens at lunch tomorrow, I still come home to that wonderful guy. I've already won.
So, here's to personal growth. ((deep breath)) I can do this. Right?
Me: [mee] - pronoun
For more on that aforementioned wanderlust problem, click here.