I haven't posted in a while. Part of that's because my life, as Doug, is strangely ordinary. Okay, it's still a bit weird to look in the mirror and see a stranger, but I've gotten to know that stranger a bit. I know how to handle his business. I don't try to "act" like him, but so far nobody's looked at me and said "Hey, that's not something you would do." Even when that's true.
Work's been stressful too. My boss, the regional manager, put the screws to me to improve business for the holidays. A lot of my staff are teens and twenty-year-olds who don't take their minimum wage jobs that seriously. I'm trying to figure out how to motivate them. Admittedly, I've been more into work than I have the marriage.
I'm not really in this marriage. A lot of the time, when we fight, or it looks like we're going to fight, I just bite my tongue and roll over, where as Shaun I probably would have stuck it out. I hate having to suppress my feelings like that, but like I said, this isn't my relationship to mess up, like the last one was.
Sometimes it's unavoidable. A while back we were driving somewhere, and I was sticking to the On-Board Navigator instead of taking "her" route, even though "I" should have known my way around. And damn did I get an earful. And instead of "Shut up Goddamnit, I've never driven this way before, I'm not even your husband," I just had to shrug and say "I was trying it out."
Another reason I've been avoiding this blog is that I just didn't want to talk about it. One of the comments on it insinuated that I would enjoy "taking advantage" of Nia. Whether it's true or not, it was inevitably going to be an issue and I just didn't want to discuss it. I mean, it wasn't that long since my finacee broke my heart and I wasn't ready to take up with another woman, let alone one I barely knew. If I had wanted someone on the rebound, I might have picked up on the signals I was getting from Lisa back before we transformed.
Of course, Nia doesn't have this perspective. To her, I'm her man, I have certain responsibilities, and if I don't pay her attention she worries, asks why I'm not after her.
I was avoiding the issue. I knew it was on the table, that it was an inevitability, but I wanted her to bring it up, because I wanted to be sure I wasn't going to get in trouble for asking. I didn't want to seem like I wanted it to happen. In part, I didn't want it to happen. I would have been content to be one of those couples that spends every night side by side in bed, breathing softly in unison, until they drift off and roll over to "their sides."
Then one night I was lying in bed asleep when I heard her come in. She tends to work late, this was maybe 2 AM. She appeared in the bedroom doorway, leaning on the frame for support.
"Me and the girls went for drinks. Did you miss me?"
"Miss you?" I said, "I wasn't even aiming!" It was a dumb joke I had with my old fiancee, which Nia just shrugged off.
She crawled into the bed, carefully placing her hand on my leg as if to say "This is mine." She starts kissing me on the lips. I don't pull away - I know I can't - but I don't really kiss back either.
"How long has it been, Dougie?"
"Too long," I sigh, half-honestly.
"I don't wanna be one of those couples that never touches each other. Gimme some right now."
I had no choice but to obey. Doug's body was making me, and Nia's hand was placed in just the right place to be able to tell. "Hello," she said as she reached over my pajama waistband.
As reluctant as I had been, I liked this part of it. She's a very sexy woman, so it was easy to get over my hesitation. I haven't had a woman pay me this kind of attention in months, and the feeling that this was... new, maybe even not totally right, was kind of a thrill. While it was happening, I tricked myself into believing Nia knew me, and not Doug. But when it was over, I felt awful.
Well somehow I convinced myself to do it a few times since then. You know, taking one for the team.
The real hassle is the holidays. For Thanksgiving, I invited Zane over, because he's technically my "sister," and it would be nice to have someone on my side for my first meeting of both "our parents" and Nia's.
Admittedly, Zane didn't seem to enjoy himself much. He was very sulky, as you might expect. And that girl's face has a way of conveying sadness that makes you feel truly awful. It was really awkward to see "our mom" pry info out of "Clara" about her modeling career prospects. I was hoping I could do something to help his mood, but maybe dragging him out to a family gathering was not the right idea. It doesn't help that Nia's got a pretty low opinion of Clara, and asked me not to let "her" come to dinner. But that was one of the few instances where I stood my ground.
She respected it, but there was no lovemaking that night.