I feel like, if I hadn't become Rob, or somebody like him, (but still went to the Inn) I would've completely lost myself by now. I am able to get up the morning and go do something and focus on it, and it has nothing to do with me or my transformation, it's just a job. At times a frustrating job, at times a somewhat rewarding one, but definitely something to occupy my mind. When I get home, I'm at ease, I'm usually marking homework or relaxing, and there honestly isn't a lot of time for me to worry about Inn-matters.
I think December is that sweet spot, for me, anyway, where I'm really used to being Rob, no longer utterly freaked out or repulsed by it, but I haven't made the plans to get my body back, which Todd keeps reminding me will be soon.
I think about the way Todd has described his time as Anne-Marie, the poor guy sitting around a nice big house (probably feeling guilty about it) with nothing to do but sit and think about being a woman. Or Bryan, a guy I try to imagine in the face of many 14-year-old girls I see in my classes, and when I do so, it makes me laugh from the sheer awkwardness of the notion.
I asked Todd what he really felt about having sex with Hal. He's always been very vocal about his idea that sex and love are different. I never totally bought it, because for a long time I had only ever had sex with him, and only loved him. And maybe they're not the same thing, but when you have sex with someone you love, it's different.
He gave me a bunch of reasons why he did it. Curiosity, pleasure, convenience, pressure. Curiosity, I buy for the first time. He's never had anything particularly good to say about the pleasure he may have felt, which makes one wonder why he kept doing. Convenience, I buy -- there must've been something very appealing to him about being able to get it whenever he wanted it. I wasn't terribly guilty of turning him down during our time together, but let's just say there were times when he knew not to ask.
When I asked him what he meant by "pressure," he told me that after a few months, after he got used to being someone's "wife," he thought he was obligated to... keep things going. The remarkable thing I find about his story is that it was the real Anne-Marie who insisted he go through with it, to keep the continuity of their sex life intact and not disrupt things. The idea that her husband was effectively banging another woman did not seem to bother her, from what I've heard, because the other woman was her.
I asked him on a scale of one to ten to rate how sexually attractive he found Hal. He said "point five. I'm attracted to women, but I thought he was a nice guy and Anne-Marie's body was rigged to go with it." There are forces beyond our understanding that compel us in these situations. When you're a man, you will fuck virtually any woman who can get you hard. When you're a woman... it's a bit more complicated.
So he told me he looked at it as masturbation. The penis was his, he just didn't have access to it as often as he used to. Interesting way to think of marriage.
We talk about sex a lot, as you can tell. I want to ask him about the cooking and cleaning and taking care of the kids but for whatever reason I have an even harder time dealing with that idea. He has more frame of reference to deal with sex. That's just him.
He is of the opinion that I should pursue Ingrid. Maybe he wants to justify what he did with Hal or what he did with Donna by seeing me through the same situation. I've forgiven him, for whatever reason, we're in a situation where it feels like the normal standards shouldn't apply, and when they did I did some very wrong things so all my guilt has come back to me.
Ingrid seems to me to be a perfectly interesting woman, and maybe in another life I'd allow myself, as a man, to be attracted to her. And if she were a (decent-looking) man, she'd certainly inspire some guilty feelings in Alia. She's mature and smart, but has a clever, subtle sense of humour. But she can be very cold.
I have a feeling she wasn't meant for a meat-and-potatoes guy like Rob. and if I pursue her, then when I go back to my life, and Rob Garcia presumably takes his back, I am setting them up for more failure and I can't let myself be responsible for that.
Early in the archives, I read about Art/Liz's two suitors and him permitting himself ot fill Liz's role with them as a way of not screwing up her life. And that's the same as what happened with Todd... but that's not me, that's not Rob. Rob is just a guy who teaches by day, and goes home and tries not to think too hard about how he is really a woman named Alia by night.
And if I'm being honest, that's about the loneliest I've ever felt, realizing that just now.
Using common sense, I should probably just stay lonely, stay the course. But every so often my vision drifts over to the bikini calendar that I have left on July the way I found it, and I wonder how long it's gonna be before I go ahead and do something stupid for myself.
In happier news...
I was rather surprised to hear that, in the 21st century, a high school is not too timid just to throw a Christmas party. Granted, I'm talking about the faculty party, not anything that might involve the students and therefore potentially-oversensitive mothers. I mean, look at me -- I was raised half-brown and I love Christmas.
We're doing a Secret Santa exchange. I got Dean, which is fairly lucky since he's a friend of mine, but also I'm having some trouble with it. I simply have no clue what to buy a man. Most of the gifts I ever bought Todd were a) relationship gifts, or b) because I knew his very particular tastes. Dean, I don't know nearly well enough, and I'm guessing some guys might be prone to analyzing gifts given to them by other men.
(And so what if I did want to sleep with Dean? He's handsome in a creepy-nearly-middle age way.)
Maybe I'll just get him beer.
The semester is winding down and I'm going to have a lot of marking to do, so if you don't hear from me until after Christmas, I'll try not to freak out and go on a screwing-spree.