Now I'm Almost Over You, I've Almost Shook These Blues, So When You Come Back Around, After Painting The Town You'll See, That I'm Almost Over You
Intentions are dangerous things. One can believe one's intentions are honorable and relatively harmless, but actually harbor fairly illicit intentions beneath. Whether this truth is due to deluding oneself or the inability to distinguish right from wrong, it is a problem that plagues almost all of us on one occasion or another. It certainly plagues a lot. More than not, I act out of an interest to better my situation, but this can come in many forms. Sometimes I act out of an interest in making a new acquaintance, in which case I will go out of my way to act according to the Rachel ideals that I seem to preach a lot. Sometimes I act out of an interest in relieving the stress I see around me, in which case I will try to be the bigger man and apologize for wrongs that might not seem that wrong to me. Sometimes I act out of a purely selfish interest, in which case all the rules of civility and well manners get tossed out the proverbial window. However, it's the times when I think I'm doing something noble, but am actually doing some by all right reprehensible that eats at me to the core.
A situation has arisen which serves as a perfect template for this. I've recently undertaken the task of planning my next vacation in May. I've narrowed it down to three possible destinations--St. Louis, Boston, or Chicago. While most years the biggest concern I have is what to pack, what to sightsee, and what restaurants I simply must sample, this year a confluence of forces has materialized to burden me with a more momentous dilemma. It quite possibly may be the biggest dilemma I've ever had to face.
I had mentioned to Breanne that it's been almost ten years since we last did anything together--since we've traveled together, since we've talked in person together, since I've even seen her in person. Because of that I tossed out the ridiculous notion that she should come out on vacation with me. You have to understand I practically ask everyone I know who I think is fun to come out on vacation with me. No one ever accepts. This year alone I've asked my friends, Elio, Meg, and Carly to join me on my excursion with the full foreknowledge that such a plan is wishful thinking at best and foolhardy at worst. When I ask the question of their willingness to accompany me, it is much in the same vein of when I ask my co-workers of going to Peru for our one-hour lunch or ordering a deep dish pizza from Chicago delivered to work; it is a request to be taken with a grain of salt. You can imagine my surprise and consternation when my friend, my good friend Breanne, actually told me she would take it under consideration. I attempted to laugh it off, but the very notion of bringing back the P & B dynamic duo was too mind-boggling to process carefully at the time. I deluded myself into thinking it would be a good thing and that was that. I left off the conversation expressing my full support for the idea.
The deal with Breanne, as some of you may know, is that I love her dearly. She's like the little sister I never had, the confidante I always wanted, and the intellectual peer I've always tried to surround myself with, all wrapped into one appropriately attractive package. I haven't given my heart to very many people, let alone to many who actually deserved it. I don't usually heap praise upon individuals strictly in order to be on their good side; I like to tell a person my honest estimate of them without embellishment or colorful language. I hate when others choose to indulge their personal feelings for a subject and allow themselves to be compromised objectively. With all that understood, I still believe that Breanne is one of the finest examples of a human being I've ever encountered. There is no single other person I would place in highger regard than her. Because of that the thought of being able to spend a week with her, just the two of us, should do nothing if not bring an everlasting grin to my face.
For the first few days, as I mulled the idea over, I saw nothing but positives. Two friends as close as we are should get together every couple of years. It's a natural desire to keep in touch with someone you feel close too. I already know I can have fun with her and she would probably turn an okay trip into a vacation that I'll cherish forever. For the first few days it occurred to me the whole plan would be win-win.
Then, after a few more days, the troubling mire of where my intentions lay came into the picture. I started to ask myself if the real reason I wanted her to come was because she was my friend and that I wanted to see her again or if the real reason I wanted her to come lay elsewhere. It's no secret that more often than not I've come to regret not seizing my opportunity to spend the rest of my life with her when it came along. I didn't see it for what it was, life opening the door and inviting me into the party. I let it slip by and it never came around again. Not only was the sticky question of whether I could rekindle her passion for me entering back into my thoughts, but another more sinister motive started to rear its ugly head.
Possibly or probably, I've always known that she and I will never get back together. When she met Greg that pretty much was game over for me. But like the stupid ass I can be, I always left the door just open a crack for the possibility that it was fate for us to be together again someday. I was (or am) like one of those people who get scammed out of their money by a loved one who keep expecting that all will be made right in the end, even when circumstances dictate that they should probably cut bait and run. They keep hoping to the bitter end that their predicament will change for the better. I guess I always believed in the chestnut that love, if true, will find a way to reunite separated souls. However, pragmatically, I steeled myself for the inevitability it wouldn't happen. One thing I didn't give up, shamefully, is the idea that there might be a chance, however remote, that I could spend one last night with her.
I think that's where I sincerely believe the plan for her to come with me to Chicago or Boston or St. Louis might be a bad idea. I've never met Greg. I don't even really know him. From what Breanne's described of him, I think he's a decent fellow. And, even though I have my personal (and probably childish) reasons for disliking the guy, I though had enough maturity to not wish ill on him because of something he really can't be faulted for, which is marrying my girl. The more I ponder it more and more, the more I come to the conclusion that, given the history, given the connection shared, given the fact she has never ceased to be anything but beautiful to me, I would, in fact, have sex with her one more time. Even if it meant ruining her marriage or causing her to hate herself, my honest assessment of myself would be that those consequences would matter less to me than fulfilling that particular fondest desire I've held in for so many years. That's why I think the idea of us ever going anywhere alone together is a recipe for disaster. I mean--the whole informal treaty of her and Greg never again venturing into California, and I never gracing the ground of Georgia again, was struck mostly to keep peace between Greg and I. But I think there was also the idea that it also partly for mine and Breanne's benefit too.
Then again, I can't speak for her. I believe I know her and I think she could be mulling over the same fantastical ideas. Yet, for all I know, she has more common sense and self-control than I possess. She probably does. The only evidence I can go on is what you read here. I don't think it's just my imagination playing tricks on me when I imagine that there is something of a spark, albeit small, between us. I don't know of any set of exes, aside from those relationships that ended violently or tragically, that does not harbor residual feeling for one another. There are parts of me that miss, I mean really miss, DeAnn. There are days when I truly hate the fact I can't remember much of Tara. The fact that Breanne and I stay in constant contact doesn't help the matter any. The mere routine of reading her thoughts on a regular basis only stokes the flame of how much I care for her. When you add the posts she writes about what it was like in the beginning and those wonderful days visiting her or her visiting me, then you can't fault for me for wanting to recapture that. Truth be told, I still want her a lot and damn whatever consequences may result from it. I feel what I feel. Or, as she likes to say, I can only be mojo--no more, no less. I'd sooner abandon my kidneys or my liver than my enamoration of her.
That, in a fairly big nutshell, is the situation I'm in. I could go ahead with the plans to invite her and pretend to her that I'm fully over her, when we both know the truth. That would probably lead me to not enjoying the trip as much as I could and probably coming back regretting I didn't take advantage of a situation that will never come again. The alternative would be doing something that I honestly want to do but would probably ruin at least three lives, two relationships, and one blog site in the process. I wish my intentions were pure. It would solve so many headaches. I wish I could enjoy my time with my friend and want for nothing more, but I have a skulking suspicion that my lack of self-control coupled with my somewhat tenuous grip on ethics or morality shall lead me down a path of wickedness that I've probably never strayed too far from.
I want to be able to express to her that, should she come along, nothing would happen and I want that expression to be the truth when I say it. I want to put on display just how much I've put my old feelings for her behind me. I want to be cocky and brazen in just how much I don't still think of us as a couple. I want to flirt with fucking redheaded hostesses originally from Canada right in front of her. I want to be able to say good-night to her after a day of non-sexual or non-romantic adventures and have it really be all I need for a good night. I want to look her in the eye and tell her that where we are is a place I'm 100% completely comfortable in being.
But all of that would not be the truth.
As aforementioned, the public cover story I'm giving to anybody who asks is that it's just two friends getting together after not seeing each other for almost a decade. Nothing scandalous going on here, folks. But beneath all the spin and attempting to appear to be virtuous is the simple truth I still think she belongs with me, which will come spilling out one day or another into the trip if we do go on it.
The truth is I would never sleep with a married woman. I would hate myself for even considering it.
Yet I would sleep with Breanne one more time, no doubt.