Wednesday, February 3, 2010
Notes on a Former Lover
His interest became evident when he heard I was separated. He approached my boss to see if it was appropriate to ask me out. They had a good relationship; she liked him and she liked me so she was all for it. I'd had dinner with him many times on a business level and we got along great. Dating was about to change the whole picture. First of all, he invited me to accompany him to Kyoto. His San Diego station had an annual client trip to which he was always invited with a "guest" and he invited me. It was a week long excursion. We'd never even kissed. I called my mother and asked her what to do.
"Go." she said.
But my father got into the act. He had been a national rep too. He'd had his own business for thirty plus years before retiring. He was bat shit. The phrases "Not proper" and "conflict of interest" were applied liberally.
All my co-workers wanted me to go. It was the trip of a life time and I was separated and my husband, soon-to-be-ex, was on the east coast.
"Go!" they urged.
I didn't go. I couldn't reconcile any of it: the conflict, the feelings I had for my husband and the fear I felt about being with the new guy. Turns out, I'd have had my own rooms and needn't have worried but I was too inexperienced to ask. He was very disappointed but when he returned we began to date and years later I realized I might as well have made the trip because, in the eyes of his competitors, I did compromise myself by dating him. He always claimed I was much harder on him when it came to negotiations than I was on his competition and he was right. But only he and I knew that. It was doomed from the beginning but we became very good friends.
So last night he dropped me a note and it was sweet. He was bringing me up to date on his grand kids, his life. He is still single having married and divorced twice, once before I'd met him and once after. He ended the email referring to himself as an "elderly gentleman". He just turned 67 which kinda blows me away as I remember his 40th and 50th birthdays. We lost touch after that.
As my transition guy, we were better friends than anything else. He was somewhat of a mentor, usually a good sounding board and very helpful through much of my career. I was never in love. I just had a serious crush.
What are the ramifications of looking up an old love? Are they sweet? bittersweet? sad? Do we only want to see the ones that ended not too badly? How many of us know where our ex loves are? How many of us care? Food for thought.