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. 

Anatomy of a Catfish, Day 7 & Day 8

Day 6 started with me finding out I don't have my job anymore, but I'm fishing for a catfish so I wasn't going to let him know. Day 7 I met a friend and another friend of hers for brunch so we could brainstorm ideas and discuss my career direction. I also needed the connection and support.  I told them about my latest catfish and one of the women at our table told me about the one that forced her off all sites for good. Her situation required a police report. Yikes!

I was still in shock from some of the many turns my life is taking right now, but still super confident that this man talking to me is only lying to me.  He was very missing throughout the day, reaching out to say he missed me and loved me and wanted to leave Brazil and come home to me.

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Of course he encourages the clinginess.  That's how he knows I would do anything for him.

I was amused by this exchange because nothing can come between us, but his being right back waited several hours.  I was busy, so it wasn't a big deal.

Day 8 came and I was going through the stages we go through when faced with change in our lives.  Call it grief.  Call it disappointment.  It was stages of exhaustion, frustration, disappointment, and hope.  And in my abnormal weakness, his words penetrated in a way that was unexpected.  I'll spare you the screenshots.

 Promises of love

The reason I am writing this today is because I can’t stop thinking about you, and I can’t stop myself from imagining how happy we will be. Let this be a promise to you that I will do my best to be the man I want to be for you. I may not yet know all of the difficulties that come with a lifetime commitment, but I have enough relationship experience to know what I want and how I picture my life with the person I will commit to and that is you Yessica. I promise to do my best to make you beam daily, so count on many surprises. Your smile will be my priority. I get weak knees when anybody smiles, so just imagine the effort I will make to be the source of yours. I promise I will always look at you with the same adoration as I did the moment I realized I loved you. I promise to try to ignite the same sparkle in your eyes I see when you’re surprised, inspired, motivated or when you are about to lean in to kiss me. I promise to hold your hand when we’re 80 years old with the same liveliness that I did when I crossed that line to hold yours for the first time. I vow never to let the excitement of dating me die down; I will surprise you with the location, the reason or the activity itself. I promise to keep you guessing where we’re going next. I promise to do my best always to interest you. I will keep reinventing myself, gaining new hobbies, new knowledge and new interests to keep you and myself entertained. I promise to kiss you throughout our life do my best to remain physically attractive for you, and I will do my best to be healthy in order to keep up with our kids someone has got to teach them Muay Thai kickboxing..lol...I’ll train you, too; I want you to know how to fight and defend yourself, just don’t use it against me. Lol I promise to help you to be healthy, both physically and mentally. I will cook and clean for us. Expect the best breakfast: traditional Armenian tomato and pepper omelets, followed by fruit salad with… well, I can’t give all the secrets out. I promise to strive to be a role model for our children. I want both you and them to see me as a source of motivation. I want to inspire them in the same way that my father inspires me.I promise to do my best to love your family as you love them and to be by their side as much as I am by yours. I promise to always listen to you when you simply just want to be heard; when you want someone to vent to about something or when you want advice. I will listen to you especially when you don’t feel comfortable sharing your thoughts with anybody else, and to the things you try to tell me when you’re not even speaking. I promise to always listen. During our life together, I promise to make sure that you feel as though you are the center of the household — I know you will be — and I will always try to show my appreciation for you because of that. I promise never to let my guard down in taking care of us. I know you won’t be one to be satisfied with the bare minimum. I promise to do everything that I can for you without taking away from your independence physically, intellectually or emotionally. I promise to create family traditions and to make sure that your legacy lives forever through our children. I promise to encapsulate the moment when I realize that I am in the most magnetic, amorous and erotic love with you, not to let that feeling dissipate to the best of my ability and to relive it with you constantly, always.....I love you Yessica Please don't break my heart!!!

And this is where the doubt creeps in. When I got through this I felt a lump in my throat and my mouth went dry.  My heart was beating against my rib cage in a rabitted race. I couldn't form the words to engage with my son. I couldn't move because my body was holding me in the moment that called out to my soul. How could he speak so intimately to the many desires of my heart I never knew I could yearn for?  In the hours following, I felt so conflicted.  So much of my right now is up in the air and all that falls around me is the loss of anomie, and he's here, saying he'll be the anchor I need.  I had to go back and actually read what I had written since he became the subject of my blog posts. I had to remember that it's only been 8 days and this is not normal.  This is not okay.  But I didn't feel anger.  I felt gratitude.  He offered words that invoked feelings I thought were dead.  I thought that part of me had been broken and the times I feel a fluttering, I can only feel gratitude.

I wondered if what I'm doing is wrong.  I wondered if it's possible that he's a genuine man that really did fall in love with my smile and maybe he really did picture a forever.  It would have had nothing to do with me and everything to do with the fantasy in his head of me, but what if he's being honest? What if he really is drawn to me?  What if my blog is going to strike again as the destroyer of relationships? It has happened. It will happen. I hope to find a love that doesn't care what I write.

Then I remember that my feelings and thoughts are valid.  I remember that he really hasn't convinced me that I want more kids, and if he's genuine about what he says, he wants a child and I couldn't at this point offer that.  I have only been talking to him for 8 days.  I've never seen him in person and I've never heard his voice. This isn't a relationship but an illusion.

And then I wonder what it would be like if I wasn't who I am? What if I was the girl I was out of highschool? What if I had my past insecurities? What if I needed to hear what he was selling because I couldn't see the ways in which I am amazing. Briefly the thought of other women occurs to me.  What about these women that need to hear these things more than I do today? What about the women that would spend thousands on keeping a man happy to keep his affection.  I want to be angry and rage, but I can't.  In this moment, I let his words wash over me, and pretend for a few more moments that I have no doubts.  I pretend for a bit that we are the picture of love he's been painting and I indulge in a fantasy because my boys are yelling and his fantasy is so much better than my present reality. And I ignore the fact that aside from tomorrow night and Christmas Eve and some friends that are welcoming me on Christmas Day, lost in his fantasy, I will still be alone.  He hasn't solved the problem I had in going online to find a date.  I still don't have a date, even if he promises to be here Christmas Eve to be with me. And it occurs to me that I have nothing to wear because there's enough doubt that I wonder if he will show up.

Anatomy of a Catfish, Day 8

Waiting on My Miracle Between Jobs