Blog by Yessica Maher, los Angeles Native.

She explores life after marriage, starting a career in her late 30's, relationships, breaking cycles of abuse, online dating, self care, fertility and depression. 

It's all over the place, but so is living. 

Welcome Distractions, or My Latest Crush

I prefer a good crush.  This has been decided.  I have yet to be convinced otherwise.  They're safe.  There are too many ready excuses why I'm not ready for a real relationship.  I think the biggest thing is my paranoia.  I'm low maintenance and easy going and that is so easily manipulated.  Most people that know me have noticed that I'm fairly resilient and adaptable to adverse situations and uncontrollable change.  That is an abuser's fantasy and I'm aware of that. I won't demand to see someone's phone, or insist they tell me every detail.  (Okay, so I would check my ex's phone, but it never occurred to me to look at any texts other than the ones from his sister that hated me. I might have seen the affair if I had.) I don't even need to be in constant communication or contact because I really love my time alone. I can be intense and passionate and dialing it back is always a challenge and not always a welcome one. A freefall into love means I'm giving it my all at 110% no matter what the return, or if there is one at all.  At the same time, I'm afraid of welcoming someone into my life that will eventually want to play house and I'll have to trust someone with my kids and that's the last thing I want right now.  I like silly crushes and superficial connections. I like playing it safe. My latest crush has very solidly placed me in his friend zone.  It was somewhere between a crush and almost a thing, but never really a thing.  I once joked that he keeps dumping me but we're not together. It feels like cooling off is leading to a final answer and while there is a little sadness because I always want what I want, I can accept it for what it is and appreciate it for what it was.  There was no leading on.  His honesty is new.  There isn't something to read into because his words have always matched his actions.  I think he was always flattered, somewhat curious, but he was always clear that I'm not the one.  I was never the right one for him. I won't explain his reasons but I will say I understand them and would never hold them against him. Maybe this moment is setting doves free.  I'm releasing what I have so carefully kept to myself.

There were a few moments when that friendship was a blurry dance but it's firmly back in place again and I'm okay with that.  Or I will be. It's where I keep all of the ones I refuse to let go of.  It's a good place to be.  I did consider a real and lasting relationship with him for a little while.  He's pretty amazing.  If being with him when I didn't have my kids could ever be enough, he would be the one. My kids have a way of creating radical change and I wouldn't want to change him.  I enjoy so much about him that shifting who he is would be a disservice to him and his eventual Miss Right.  He could only ever be Mr. Right Now but he's so great I would want more for him.  There isn't a time limit on Right Now, is there? Besides, it's not that serious. When I'm having a rough day, I'm not trying to hand it to him to fix for me.  We don't get into deep discussions about our dreams and our histories. We haven't actually gone out on a date. I'm very open and transparent and he's incredibly private.  I'm more into escaping into who he is and what he looks forward to each day than trying to fit him into me and my life. It's enough that on a rough day, a memory of a conversation or his shy smile can make me smile.

On a tangential side note, I'm listening to a playlist that includes Radiohead's Creep, Self-Esteem and She's Got Issues by the Offspring as well as Dramarama's Anything, Anything.  We won't analyze that, but I will leave it right here for me to notice and you to laugh at.  Go ahead.  It's a freebie.

What kind of man could catch my eye and hold my attention?

He's amazing and special.

There's something transcendent about his hugs.  To be wrapped in his solid arms and held against his body with that amazing scent that is so masculine and sexy . . . I will not admit or deny that there is occasionally drool involved. Bald men with healthy tans and hard muscles has always been a thing - my thing because I'm not above being shallow, but he has been a special treat.  His eyes are dark brown and so expressive.  There's a quiet calm in the way he slouches in a chair and it's almost like watching a wild animal that is bored between kills.  Lithe.  He has a beautiful lithe body. When he talks about astronomy, physics and geology, there's passionate excitement. I don't know if he's into Potter, but he'd be a Hufflepuff and that's not a bad thing.  I've always been a little more Ravenclaw but I can see that in him too.  He's well read and like a sponge, he not only absorbs what he's read, he can expand on it and watching him express what has blended together and mellowed into certainty for him is a special pleasure.  His eyes will tell you when he's unsure or insecure and there's a soft vulnerability in his gaze with lifted brows and full lips.  I could coddle him in those moments.

He's the strong and silent type but there's a vulnerability about him that brings out my protective side. In many ways he's so open, guileless and innocent. In other ways he's closed off and unmovable. Manchild isn't a dirty word if that's what would define him.  I rarely have this much patience or kindness for men since I realized my role as a wife was more important to me than being my ex's wife was. There's something about him that speaks to that part of me that needs to give and offer and not expect anything in return.  He brings out selflessness in me, and it's not about my vulnerability.  It's not that he needs to catch or protect me.  I want him to continue to be who he is, and whether or not he can offer me anything more than a smile is irrelevant.

He's beautiful.  I think most would say he's cute or a looker, (I may or may not have shared a glimpse of a profile picture with a select handful of women and maybe a gay man) but that's just based on his face.  There's a whole package and the thought of it is often my happy place.  Like, Peter Pan better find Tink because I'm ready to fly now.  There is solid muscle that looks amazing in a t-shirt and jeans. He has a runner's body and the lines from his broad shoulders to his hips are what Greek sculptors were commissioned to master. I love the body hair that covers his arms and peeks out of his soft and faded t-shirts.  He's so active that his skin is always warm and slightly dewy. (Perks of a fast metabolism.) His hands are warm and calloused and rough and manly. His chest is perfect. My hands are soft and sensitive and there is so much pleasure in what my fingertips and palms have felt.  I love the way his muscles strain to stretch across his chest and the thin flesh over his sternum throbs with his pulse and his stomach is flat and firm and fun to touch.  There is so much peace in wrapping my arms around him and just fitting. His kisses are deep and passionate and I imagine his hip girdle could make angels cry.  I wouldn't know.

For the first time in my life, I've been alone with a guy and kissed him and we've started something doesn't mean he needs to finish it.  We've kept our clothes on at all times and there's a purity in it that is worth holding on to. Some people call that respect or taking it slow, but it's so alien and I totally dig it.  I'm used to manipulation and aggression and guilt to go further than I want to, but there isn't a rush and I love that feeling. I really just enjoy sitting with him and talking to him.

I'm not into the idea of sweating.  I will sweat.  I just don't enjoy it unless I'm walking somewhere to see something beautiful or pulling weeds.  Exercise that doesn't look like fun isn't something I do.  He's so committed to being active and eating well.  He's mindful of what he's eating at all times and it's a choice I admire.  It's a lifestyle for him and has been since at least his teens and it's beyond admirable.  I thought being gluten free was a pain for me, but to stay off of sugar for nearly 20 years puts him on a meta human level, right? Dr. Xavier around, anyone?

I think the greatest pleasure I feel from him is in that sapiosexual itch he scratches.  He's so smart, and curious, and creative.  I've had conversations with him where I was dumbstruck by the ideas and thoughts he explains and I did mention he's gorgeous, right? He once told me about reading Einstein's autobiography and a lot of that conversation is a blur because I was struck by how intelligent he is and the rest of it was my slack jawed glory.  I'm sure it was comic relief because I could feel how stiff my smile was.  I must have been amusing to watch. More than once I've been lost in watching him talk.  He writes, and draws, and composes music and as public as my writing is, his craft is so much more private. I write to get it out of me, but he has ambition I've never felt before. I try to write daily and exhaustion often wins, but he is so dedicated to his craft that he's doing something creative every single day.  I was honored in hearing his music and he kept trying to explain away what he felt was wrong, but I was just lost in his ability and the way his music made me feel.  It really is something amazing when sounds aren't processed with meanings in lyrics. For a moment I thought about linking to the many posts he's made an appearance in, but it's easy.  He's been the one that makes me smile and has been inspiring posts since I first saw his smile at the end of May. He's been my muse.

He likes to stick to his routines because his goals are bigger than instant gratification.  He down plays friendships and relationships, but when people are leaving his everyday life, he takes a moment to honor their friendship by being present and communicating the value he places in them with an offering of his time.  He's deeply introspective and polite, often brushing off the possibility that anyone could offend him because of the thick skin that all artists layer on as protection. I think his transparency is far more genuine than the personas most people affect. He carefully sticks to his diet and exercise because he wants the results he's working toward.  Aside from physically pushing himself, he takes really good care of himself.  He could use more sleep and he could be more gentle on himself, but then that would shift who he is. He's passionate about politics because he knows what is right and wants his ideals to influence society because as much as he sees himself as solitary, he's also passionately interested in the good he sees in the world and wants to make it better because he can't ignore the bad that is all around.

I've always been up front that I want someone that can hold a conversation and he has to be eye candy, but we're just friends and it's not that serious even if he is beautiful because beautiful is never enough. At the same time, this post almost didn't happen for fear of a reaction that would make him hide from me and I can't have that influence the freedom in my writing, right? In theory. 

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