God damn is the month of June stressful for high school teachers. Between marking papers and making exams (which I will then have to mark) my mind has been so focused on just making in through this month that I've hardly had any time to think about what happens once I'm done.
It's taking its toll on my personality. I've hardly talked to any of my "friends" at work, I avoid talking to Todd and others on MSN and I sure as hell don't feel like venting here. My mind is cloudy and I can't focus.
I started to notice the irritation about a week and a half ago, not long after the 90's dance, and the truth is it was partly because of what happened, or didn't happen, or almost happened, between me and Cathy at that dance. And what happened next.
An astute commenter asked me, on that entry, whether I thought men or women took rejection worse. Maybe I'm biased, but I really think it's women. I never took it very well, whereas a lot of the guys I've known seem to hide it really well, if they feel anything at all. And all this time, I didn't want to get involved with anyone, because I didn't want to get attached or complicate my relationships with the people in Rob's life, but the truth is, it's already complicated, and if anything I've made it worse.
A week after I declined to pursue a physical relationship with Cathy, I found out she started seeing Dean. I don't know whether it's just a casual fling, or if they have a fling (neither of them seems like the serious type) but it seems pretty much motivated by my actions, because now the two of them are, um, not my biggest fans.
As much as I want to pretend like this isn't my life and I shouldn't care -- what's more, this is probably best -- I'm actually losing sleep over the matter. I don't like the idea that these people, whom I considered my closest friends in this life, are now against me.
So I've had to go it alone. Where can I turn? My schedule doesn't really sync up with Todd's or Cliff/Tori's. I'm often too embarrassed of myself to express myself on this blog. So I went through my stress and my anxiety, feeling frustrated with the kids and the job and everything again, when who should call but an unlikely source of sympathy... Ingrid. The former Mrs. Rob Garcia.
Don't ask how we got to talking -- she'd been in South America for a lot of the winter, only to return last month, and she was checking in on me, I guess. You'd think a divorced couple could just extricate themselves from one another, but here you are. She wasn't even that big a presence in my life, and yet I'd be a liar if I denied that those big blue eyes and curvy hips hadn't popped into my head once or twice in my occasional quiet moments of reflective....... jerking off.
We ended up meeting up, and having a serious talk. Not about "us," but about life and the world and about how the things we do have unforeseen consequences on those around us. I lamented that sometimes the things you don't do can be as hurtful as the things you do. She gave a wicked smirk at that, alluding, I guess, to some unknown event in Rob & Ingrid's past.
She spoke warmly of her new love interest, a guy she met over the internet. I don't know why, but when she mentioned that, I felt like I was missing out on something. Despite my pledge otherwise, I can't help but feel some level of desire for this woman. Despite her hard personality and hot-cold nature, I can't help but be drawn to her. I wonder whether that's just my own confused psyche, or something more primal, ingrained in Rob's bones. Who can say where attraction comes from, or what it really means?
They'd met on a dating site, although he's apparently from out-of-state, which means they haven't physically met yet... which seemed odd for a woman like Ingrid, but I guess after a bad experience, you sometimes go a little nutty. I know from experience. I left the meeting still feeling a bit isolated, but uplifted.
I don't know. I don't know whether, by being in Rob's life, I've improved it or let it stagnate, even making it worse. I get a headache just thinking about it. I want to go home soon.
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