It was a nice lunch. I haven't seen these gals in about a year.
And you know what? There's no going back!
I love my lifetime friends. I will always be interested in where life leads them and seeing their children become adults.
But I have no desire to allow any of them back in the inner circle.
That may change, actually.
Right now, I don't trust women.
The first woman I trusted with my whole story is now living with my husband. Other girlfriends knew what was happening between them and didn't tell me. Still others judged me as lacking until they knew what Joe was doing. Many of my friends were objects of Joe's lust over the years, which really isn't their fault, but still makes me wary.
Though I have made new girlfriends (and very darling ones, I might add), most of my close friends are men (and family, but that's different).
That works well for me because I am more like men emotionally and spiritually than I am like women. It also works because they don't need to examine every detail of everything I say or judge my choices. Plus, when it is evident that I am a dumb girl, they are willing to help me fix stuff.
There is one that stands out of the crowd for a little different reason.
I met Dave through Plenty of Fish last October just as I had decided dating wasn't for me. He is completely different than the main characters I've known, my dad and Joe.
He is a man who is not afraid to be a man, with deeply held convictions and strong faith. He is sometimes crude and always opinionated. He does research and shares what he knows. He is passionate about things and has a booming and infectious laugh. He loves letting me cook for him and he let me organize his Texas household when he moved (cooking and organizing are two of my favorite things). He is a man who is not afraid to say he's sorry and listens long enough to know when he should be. He is a man who knows how to cherish a woman and who is not afraid to be vulnerable to her. He is a man who has been wounded and who goes out of his way to avoid wounding others.
I love him even though I didn't mean to love him. I trust him even though I don't trust anyone. I take his advice even when I am pretty sure he is wrong.
And in return, he has told me that I am precious cargo. That he can see my soul in my eyes. That I matter. That he believes I have a bright future. That I am brilliant. That I am beautiful. That he has never known any woman like me. That - even though he didn't want to - he does love me. That GOD put us in each other's lives just exactly when we could offer each other something important. That coming back to my space from wherever he's been feels like coming home. That he's proud of my successes. That he thinks of me every time he sees how I made his home and vehicle comfortable. That I'm fucken awesome.
I don't want to share the nooks and crannies of our story, nor do I want to define what's between us. What is between us is rare and incredibly valuable to me.
I just know that every moment with him somehow defies the pull of the pain of the past and the lure of dreams of the future. And in each of those moments I am free to offer him all of me without being judged or hurt or ignored.
In exchange, he gets all of me.
I don't want to change anything about him and he wants me to be who I am. I feel free and unfettered. So does he.
This is a beautiful thing for right now.
In the conversation with the gals, one of them asked me if the relationship stayed the same for the next 15 years, would I be happy?
Oh, hell yes!
I don't need another person to be happy. I am happy all alone and independent. I am making my way into the future with great hopes of success I never imagined. I am boldly recovering from my past and letting who I am emerge as if from a chrysalis. It would be impossible for me to be anything but happy in this whimsical new world I have created.
I do not choose to be with or love Dave because I need him. I choose to be with and love him because it's what I want right now. And when one or both of us feels differently, then I believe we will be forever friends. I don't know if that friendship includes marriage or not, and it just doesn't matter.
This is an amazing sort of love. It's a God love. And you can bet I thank Him for it every day.
That reminds me. The verse I am living in every day is from Psalms: I AM THE APPLE OF MY FATHER'S EYE! Isn't that freaking awesome???? I couldn't be the apple of my earthly father's eye, but then there's my Heavenly Father!!