Wednesday, June 2, 2010

32. Bittersweet Goodbye

This whole time, Cayden and I were still emailing every few days. We still talked about what was new in our lives, so he knew all about Addam. The email I sent Cayden right after Addam first mentioned Iraq was a rant about how I had shitty luck with men. I took it out on him. He responded with an apologetic email, saying I didn't deserve to have to deal with that again, apologizing for how badly he'd hurt me with his decision.
Out of the blue, Cayden added me as a friend on Facebook. It was weird that we had been talking for seven month and this hadn't happened sooner. I accepted.
This also meant we could use Facebook chat to talk instantly, instead of waiting for email replies. Our once-every-three-days emails turned into everyday chats. I was always shocked that we hadn't run out of things to talk about. I talked to him more than I talked to my mom, more than I talked to my friends. I could tell him anything. This also meant he had to put up with my complaining when things started going south with Addam.
Addam hadn't heard back about the job. His mood changed. He didn't talk about Iraq. His eyes stopped lighting up. He didn't come over when he got off work anymore. His cute text messages were few and far between. He was using his days off to sleep instead of to see me.
"I just need some time. Not time off from you, just time. Shit's fucked up and I feel like I've been treating you badly."
"Take your time. Let me know if there's anything I can do to help."
He didn't want help. He swore it had nothing to do with me, but refused to say anything else about what was going on in his life. I didn't hear from him the next day, or the day after that. That Friday my phone rang while I was at work. It was Addam, so I snuck into the conference room to answer it.
"Hey, Whitney. What are you doing?"
"I'm at work. You?"
"Oh, I'll let you go then. Go back to work."
"No, it's fine. How are you?"
"Fine. My brother is moving back to Michigan, but other than that, nothing new."
"Is that what you're upset about?"
"Part of it. Now go back to work."
He sounded sad or bored. But he didn't try to make plans to see me. I never wanted to be the girl waiting by the phone. But I was that girl. All night and all the next day, finally I decided I needed to go out. Luckily my friend Katherine was in town from Houston and wanted me to meet her for dinner. At 8 pm Addam called.
"What are you doing?"
"Getting ready to meet my friend Katherine for dinner. You?"
"Oh, I guess I should have called you sooner. Just wanted to see if you wanted to hang out."
"Oh, sorry. Well, you're welcome to come to dinner with us. I'd love for Katherine to meet you."
"Nah, go have fun."
The next night he stopped by for about an hour. We didn't talk about anything important.
I talked to Cayden about it. I talked about how I was pissed Addam wouldn't confide in me. He couldn't expect me not to take it personally if he didn't even feel comfortable enough to talk about these things with me.
Cayden was always the perfect person to go to for advice. He could separate emotion from logic.
"Whitney, you have the perfect job. You love where you live. You have close friends, and you're close to your family. The next logical step for you is to want to share that with someone. You wanted to share that with Addam. But Addam hates his job, hates Texas, and now he doesn't even have his brother nearby. He shouldn't be in a relationship. He needs to be happy with himself and his life before he can be happy with anyone else."
Suddenly it all made sense. I couldn't make Addam happy. No matter how hard I tried, I could only make Addam like one aspect of his life. I couldn't make him like his job. I couldn't make him like Texas. It hurt, but it was relieving. It answered all the questions I couldn't ask Addam.
From that point on, I hoped and prayed he'd get the offer. That was the only thing that would make him happy at that moment. Also, I needed to break up with him. But were we even still together? Had he already broken up with me? Maybe this was one of those understood break ups. He texted me once that week to see what I was doing that night, and I had already made plans to go to a concert. That weekend I asked if I could see him on Sunday. He said, "I have to work." I said, "You're off at 2. Can I see you after that?" He said, "That should be OK."
That Sunday I went to brunch with my friend Maddy. She knew the Addam situation and agreed someone needed to break it off. As we were paying the bill, Addam texted me. "Something came up. I can't see you today."
Something came up? People really say that?
I texted him back, "Are you sure you don't have any time? I really wanted to see you."
He called me when I was in the car.
"What's so important that you want to see me?" he asked, sounding annoyed.
"Well, it's not a conversation I want to have over the phone."
"Why not? Just say what you want to say. But hurry, something really did come up, I can't talk long."
"Addam, are we even still together?" I asked, pissed we were really about to have this conversation on the phone.
"Um, I think you made it pretty clear we're not."
I was stunned.
"Excuse me? What the hell is that supposed to mean?"
"You've bailed on me the last three times I wanted to hang out."
"Addam, bailing on you would imply that we had plans. But we didn't! You never made plans with me! You can't expect me to sit by the phone and wait for your call so I can drop everything I'm doing to see you when it's convenient for you."
"I never asked you to wait," he said with the most hurtful tone I'd ever heard him use.
So that's how it was going to be. We started out perfectly. Everything was perfect for months, and everything went to shit a matter of two weeks. I cried so hard that day, even though I was prepared for the break up. It was just a horrible feeling going from so happy to so sad. I drove to my parents house and spent the rest of the day there.

Three days later, Addam called to tell me he got the offer. He was moving to Iraq. He sounded happy, thrilled even. You would have never thought this Addam was the same Addam who had purposely made me feel terrible just days before. A huge wave of relief rolled over me. I had fallen in love with Addam, and I wanted nothing more than for him to be happy. He asked if he could see me on Sunday, the day before he left Texas to head home for a few weeks. Sure, maybe we could leave things on a peaceful note.
It was 75 degrees without a cloud in the sky that Sunday. Addam picked me up in his convertible and we went out for Thai food. He was smiling, laughing, fun. He was happy. We went back to my place and had mind-blowing sex. And then I was happy. Talk about leaving on a good note.

1 comment:

  1. So I stayed up all night reading your blog! I'm so excited for you! If nothing else, have so much fun in London! It's a great city!