All on the table
I was talking to a friend..
I was talking to a friend yesterday on the topic of old
girlfriends, and I remembered Juanita. We never did get much
of a relationship going, but she was beautiful, sexy, very
smart, witty, funny, and so very together, and I so much
enjoyed being around her. Two big problems, though - she
was 20-some years older than I was, and I was dating her
daughter. Or at least, it was the younger woman who would
get in the car with me to go out on a date, but it was the
older woman I would talk to at every opportunity.
I thought It was a terrible shame her daughter wasn't more
like her. Her daughter was more like her dad: easy going,
laughs often, great conversationalist, just glad to be around
people. It was Juanita, though, who had focus and purpose
to her life.
I remember when her husband got a demotion at work, and
they decided she had to go back to work again as a nurse -
I hadn't seen her so happy! She was tired of the dutiful
housewife routine, fitting the 1950's stereotypes, and she
quickly landed a job as an operating room nurse again. From
what we heard from the surgeons, she was damn good at it
too - very in control, one step ahead of everyone else, and
ran the OR like a sergeant so the surgeon could focus on
the task at hand.
I think she felt strongly about me, too. I remember one day,
after I had stopped dating her daughter, I was a guest
instrumentalist at the church she attended. She came up to
see me after the service, huge smile on her face, gave me a
big hug, then took me by the hand to lead me to a side
room where we could talk away from everyone else. Talk
about setting my heart thumping!
What struck me today, though, as I was telling this story, is
how strongly I felt drawn there in my late teens to a woman
who enjoyed taking control. She didn't always get her way
around her house, but when she didn't, she was moody, and
God I was so attracted to her and her attitude when she
was in a mood like that!
I guess at the time I thought I wanted a woman who would
have a will as strong as mine, so we could be equals. What I
didn't realize is that my will isn't that strong at all - it is
quick to be shy and pull away in favor of anyone else's
desires. It willingly lays down in the road for strong-willed
people to run over, thinking that it is doing everyone a favor
in the process - everyone but me, of course, but "that's OK."
And, of course, not that's NOT OK. I can't do that to
myself. I'm not doing anyone else any favors when I do that
- what good does it do anyone to deny that I have wants
I suppose that realization - finally now - is why my marriage
has been crumbling, and deserves to collapse. I certainly had
a part in making it that weak, and that's too bad, because I
can't fix it now.
Juanita, my sexy, strong, alluring, wonderful older woman! I
wish I had learned more from you back then, and maybe I
would have realized why in so many ways you were wrong for