Buffy: I’m brainsick. I can’t have a relationship with him.
Willow: Not during the day, but you could ask him for coffee some night. It’s the non-relationship drink of choice. It’s not a date, it’s a caffeinated beverage. Okay, sure, it’s hot and bitter like a relationship that way, but…
Yes, a Buffy quote which further illustrates that (A) my Buffy obsession is continuing to grow, and that (B) I find it way too easy to relate to a decade old television program. However, I’ve chosen that quote because coffee seems to be the word of the day.
Here’s the thing, for the last couple months I’ve been on a roller coaster of good and bad days. Without a doubt there have been some serious ups and downs. Part of me hoped this summer would be my summer of freedom, and while I have certain had some good times, or rather drunken times, there has still been a part of me that’s held back. Call it fear, or call it self preservation, but I’ve been very scared of what truly letting go can mean. And while I’ve been a broken record, repeating today was the day I moved on, the actual moving on part has kind of escaped me.
But, the last couple months, there has been a chance for change, which comes in the form of a cute and sweet guy who I’ve been chatting with. Now this is no stranger, but a guy who I went to high school with, who happens to hang around with my same group of friends. We actually hadn’t talked in a while, aside from some random run-ins. But after a couple meet ups, he added me on Facebook, and we started chatting regularly. Now, without a doubt I’ve kept myself very guarded, so when he admitted he liked me, I wasn’t sure how to react. This whole dating thing is very strange and foreign to me. Especially when I’m surprised with a gorgeous assortment of pink daisies at work on a whim. It was pretty much the sweetest thing anyone has ever done for me in longer than I can even remember.
So, then, why have I been so scared of even going out for coffee with him?
That’s the question that has been plaguing me for the last two weeks. I know part of it has to do with the fact that after being in a relationship with someone for six years, the freedom of being on my own is kind of nice. But I think the answer lies more in the fact that I’m terrified of getting hurt again. I can go on and on how happy I am now (and I am, that’s not a lie) and how I’m glad I’m finding out who I am on my own, and a bunch of other things, but there is no doubt that I’m scared. I’m scared of opening up again, of letting someone into my heart, and of being betrayed in the most violent fashion.
But the thing is, and this is what the girls I’ve talked to about this whole situation have let me in on, is that I’m never going know either way unless I put myself out there. Agreeing to coffee is coffee: it’s a chance to get out there and see what might happen. While it’s wonderful to be on my own, and have the freedom, I can’t use that as an excuse to hide because I’m scared of what might happen.
And so, I made a choice. And I asked him out for coffee, tomorrow night. Yes, coffee. The non-relationship drink of choice. Trust me when I say this is a big. I’m letting go, even temporarily. I’m letting myself see: I’m not making any promises, but I also don’t want to die alone a crazy bird lady. I still am adamant in the fact that I really don’t think I want a boyfriend right now, not quite yet, but I also don’t know what it’s like to date. To go out, to meet up with someone, and have a great conversation over a drink or a meal. And so: coffee. Not quite a date, but a caffeinated beverage. And you know what, I think I can handle that.