Monday, March 05, 2012

"At the baggage claim you got a lot of luggage in your name..."

(Miranda Lambert, "Baggage Claim")

Well, when I went to NYC to visit my friend Andy, I didn't check my bags at the curb. I checked them at the gate, which means you waive the $25 fee and you don't have to wait for the baggage to come 'round the baggage carrel.

But I didn't realize that I had some other kind of baggage. Yes, there's more! In 1997-98, I dated a guy we'll call Dave. And part of his goal in life in our relationship was to spoil me for all other men. Things he did: he ran me a bath with rose petals one time. When I was sick for three months with bronchitis, he sometimes went to the grocery store for me. One weekend when I was visiting my folks in Virginia, I called him to come drive me home b/c I didn't want to take the bus back to Pittsburgh. And the creepiest one: he knew when I got my period (better than I did) and made sure to make me a lasagna b/c he knew I craved tomatoes that time of month. He pretty much made me dependent on him in every way. When we were through, I was more than a little lost. (Oh, and he wouldn't let me break up with him, even though I tried, about once a month for about four months out of the twelve-ish months we dated. What can I say? He was a sweet talking philosophy student, and I did like having a boyfriend.)

He broke up with me, I mourned, I went to live with my folks to deal with my brand new bipolar diagnosis, and I learned how to do things all my self again. Until I started dating Max. Remember Max? I dated him five years ago. He's still my first floor neighbor. Since dating for me = Dave, I expected Max to act like Dave and treat me like the princess I was never meant to be. I only fully realized this today, when due to the fact that NYC airports are mean mean mean (flight delayed FOUR times) and I was going to be with out a ride home from the airport b/c my ride was based on an 2:30 pm arrival in Pittsburgh and I didn't actually arrive in Pgh until 4:45 pm. And the boy couldn't pick me up for whatever reason (it doesn't matter what his reason is--he has a life too.) (I don't know what his reason is.) And I was bereft. And as I ate my airport McDonald's dinner and tried to calm down and sent a tweet to a friend saying "when did I become the damsel in distress?" I thought about Dave. And how that was his goal. To spoil me for all other men. Yep. I got baggage. Throw another suitcase off into the ocean folks, let's get rid of that extra weight.

Because, what would I rather have, a man who controlled me so much that he knew when to cook me lasagna and he broke up with me when I was depressed because "you've changed, you're not the same person anymore," or someone who makes me laugh on a cold morning as I check my email, preparing to embark on a day of travel? I have no clue if the boy is "the one" and that is not up for consideration, but I know that the fact he couldn't pick me up at the airport should have been more neutral than it felt at 4:45 when I got his last text saying he couldn't pick me up, with a frowny face. To me: it felt like a slap in the face, like "I can't take care of you" when it was more like, "I have other things going on."

 As I walked through the airport, dragging my wheelie bags, I thought of Sally; (my Sally, not "the" Sally), who last week while I was trying to figure out rides,  quoted Billy Crystal from "When Harry Met Sally:"

I never take girlfriends to the airport. Because at some point you don't take them to the airport, and then they say "you never take me to the airport anymore." 

I need to watch that movie again.

Learning, every day, learning. And now, dear ones, time to go to BED. Because when you spend over six hours of your day mostly in one airport waiting to go home and a little bit in another airport trying to figure out how you're going to GET home....well, it's tiring, physically and emotionally.

How did I get home? While I was gone, I had lent my car to a neighbor who doesn't have a car. She couldn't pick me up this evening, but her husband and daughter came and got me, IN MY CAR, at the airport. So it all worked out in the end. Oh ye of little faith. Good night.

No comments: