After ten minutes of cuddling on the couch, Andrew pats my head and says, “Caitlin, I think we need to talk.”
Oh great, the talk. ‘THE Talk.’ I didn’t want the talk. Sure I was confused as to what he was feeling and where, if anywhere, we were going but not enough to make me want to define our relationship. The truth is, I wasn’t sure what I wanted. Flirting with Andrew was fun and the idea that maybe one day we could date was also enjoyable. But here? Now? Why now?
“Really?” I ask, hoping that he will say, “Psych!” and we will continue watching the NatGeo feature on Landslides.
“Yeah,” Andrew responds. “I feel like you want to ask me something but you haven’t. Last weekend when you texted me asking if I liked you… I feel like we need to talk about that…”
Again, I mentally slap myself in the head for ever sending that text. I had just flown down to Irvine to visit my friend Amanda and the UCI campus for the weekend of Halloween, and some combination of the frustration of not understanding Andrew, the freedom of being miles away from responsibility and the recent altitude change (maybe the humidity had a little impact) somehow made me forget all social rules. Result? I texted Andrew the previously stated text. Right afterwards I regretted the decision.
“Yeah about that…” I started, “ We don’t have to talk about that. It was just a text and we haven’t talked about it this far. We are fine.”
“No,” Andrew says. “I feel like you, subconsciously or not, want to ask me something, to figure something out, and I want you to know that you can ask me.”
No Andrew! Contrary to popular belief I do not want to know if you like-me, like me and if we have a future. I’m not ready to screw up whatever we have by trying to advance things to the next level, either by succeeding when I am not prepared or by you telling me otherwise and ruining our relationship. No sir. I do not have anything to ask you. Nope.
“Caitlin,” Andrew pleads. “You know what you want to say.”
“Andrew, I am not ready for anything serious,” I begin, “and I don’t understand you. I don’t know what you want. You are inconsistent in your actions. I can never tell what you are feeling.” So much for not saying anything…
“Caitlin, I’m attracted to you, but when we hang out I realize,” Andrew takes a dramatic pause, “I realize that I just think of you as my little sister.”
There it is. Are you happy? Low-blow straight to the privates. I am somewhat floored because that came out of nowhere. I thought he was madly in love with me. All signs pointed to yes. The only worry I had was keeping the marriage at bay, but I guess I was wrong. Oh how I was wrong…
“Oh,” is all I manage to get out.
“So did you get what you were looking for?” Andrew Asks. “Did I answer your question?”
“Uh… I guess you did. Wow. That clears a lot up.”
He begins the “You Just Found Out I Have No Feelings For You” blow-softener speech. You know, “You are really intelligent and funny and beautiful blah blah blah *insert failing comforters here.*” But I stop him before he can get too far. I know I am great. How can you point it out and see it in me and still not want me? Enough of this crap about finding someone like me who I deserve who will make me happy. Obviously I thought I could be happy with someone unlike me, someone like you. I don’t need an optimistic relationship forecast from the person who just dumped me. We weren’t even in a real relationship and I am still finding myself being hurt and appalled and angry and wanting him back. Inside I’m experiencing an emotional rollercoaster. Outside, my face and voice stay composed as I try to sound like the “bigger person” while I slowly retreat back to the comfort of my apartment.
“Well I should go to bed,” I say. “It’s late and cold outside. And you are up way past your bedtime Grandpa.” I try to joke to make the awkwardness seem less suffocating.
“Yeah,” Andrew replies, “I’ll walk you to your door.”
The walk is really just about 75 seconds but it feels like an eternity before I am gripping the doorknob to my apartment.
“I’m really glad we had this talk,” He says.
“Yeah,” I say attempting a smile.
He goes in for a hug and all I can think is how much I don’t want to hug him right now, how I don’t want to be friends and how I am definitely not keeping up with his texts.