I'm not an idiot, but I also try not to presume too much.
Maybe he just was coming over to drop off my stuff.
Maybe he just wanted to catch up, old friends style.
I mean, we haven't spoken, or caught up in, what, over a decade? A long time, anyway. Maybe he just wants to say hi.
I texted a friend. He's coming over. I feel weird. Wary. Suspicious. Cautious.
"How's his marriage?" she asked.
"I don't know. I don't want to know."
Because if he comes over and starts telling me how bad his marriage is, isn't that when I'm supposed to jump in about how awful she sounds and shouldn't we have sex now?
Suspicious. But reminding myself that I'm maybe wrongly so. Am maybe assuming too much.
The good thing about reuniting with a long ago ex is that you no longer particularly care how you look.
I mean, I was happy that when I saw him on Friday I was looking good, but now he was coming over to my space. Jeans and a hoodie would do. One layer of mascara.
"I'm putting on pants for you." I said.
"PJs would have been fine," he answered.
I was nervous, and when he chose to sit on the couch next to me as I went through my box of mementos he'd returned, I don't think my body language could have been any more closed off. Had I been leaning any further away from him, I would have tipped right off the couch. Eye contact? Nope. Smiles? Polite ones.
I flipped through the cards and letters and photos, told him I was grateful he'd kept and returned them, and he talked to me about his life.
And, no, it's not going well.
Which is too bad. But also too convenient, if you're cynical, like me.
There was no talk of what I'd said the day before, and I listened, and we chatted a bit about my life too. He asked about my parents, I asked about his, we retold a couple of funny stories from when we'd been together and I relaxed as the time went on.
Eventually, I asked him if he needed to get going to his event, and he said yes, and I walked him to the door.
We hugged, was a friendly hug on my end. Sure, he looked charming again in his less formal clothes, he smelled the same, which always triggers memories, but I'd already made my decision, and I had no desire to do anything more than give this married ex boyfriend of mine a hug.
He went in for a kiss, most likely just intended to be a friendly peck, and I gave him my cheek. Better safe than sorry, I figured.
It was awkward. I kept wanting to ask him why he was there, why it felt like he was wanting to feel out what might be possible between us. I wanted to ask him had he cheated on me? Had our relationship started when he was still with his ex? Was he trying to end another relationship by cheating, this time with his wife, or had I just imagined all of these things?
But I didn't.
Didn't feel like I quite trusted either of us enough to even bring up the topic of sex at all.
Because I know I wouldn't sleep with a married man. But that doesn't mean I don't want to sleep with this man.
Not because he's married. Not because I'm particularly attracted to him anymore. Just because I want to know if it would be the way it used to be.
And if it was? Well, that would be a problem. But would be worth it for that moment.
And if it wasn't? Well, maybe that would be both better and worse. Better because then I could move on, knowing that how things were back then would only ever be a memory. And worse, because I'd be disappointed it wasn't better.
So, yes, there's a part of me that wants to sleep with him just to see.
Almost experimentally. Scientifically.
And I wish he wasn't married.
I almost wish I didn't have morality. Wish I could just give in to the hedonism of it all and stop thinking about things so damn much.
But I won't.
And I'll just keep telling myself that.
So now I think I shut him down enough that I won't hear from him again.
Or, perhaps he had no intentions of going down that road anyway and I'm obnoxious for thinking otherwise.
But here's the thing. I believe I know this man. I lived with him. I nearly married him. Sure, people change, but do they change that much? Do I think I know how he would react, if, right now, I sent him a text? "hey" Do I think I know how he would react if I asked him to come over, told him we needed to talk? If, then, I switched up my body language? Do I think I know how I could, easily enough, make this happen, if I wanted to? I believe so. Call it a hunch.
Call it the instinct I've always had for reading him. (Right up until the day he said he didn't want to be with me anymore.)
And man, that idea, that thought is ... powerful.
The idea that I am the one who's stopping anything from happening. That I suspect he's waiting for an in.
(And how I also really hope he's not. That I want him to not be that guy.)
So as you can imagine, my weekend was a mind-messing one.
And, honestly? I think I'm still processing it.
A good friend of mine told me I obviously hadn't thought through what would happen when I told him that. And I had. I just hadn't thought through all the possibilities. But the same friend is proud of me for saying it. For doing what I wanted to do, and not talking myself out of yet another thing.
I didn't mean to open the can of worms that I did this weekend, (well, last weekend, really, since it took me this long to type out three days worth of mind-mess) but I think I did a pretty good job of closing the can back up again.
And I know I want to open the damn thing back up, but I'm not going to.
Even though I want to.