I’ve clearly been dragging my feet about sharing this next part of my (our) story. But here goes…
It was February 2012 when I had the unfortunate incident with my co-worker at the winery. It was also that incident that got me to pick up the phone and call John.
I knew I wanted to tell him and get his support and I’ll admit, even a hug. Which is exactly what I got.
Over the next three weeks we talked almost every day. We played tennis and hiked and went to coffee and dinners together. Just like we used to.
He was still busy driving back and forth to the valley to get his house ready for the new tenant. But most days we were doing something together.
By week three we were even back to sharing an intimate relationship.
I was at his place and we went on this great hike together.
Afterwards we sat in a local pub talking and I mentioned the “incident” with my winery co-worker.
I said my entire life I’ve had no one who I could truly lean on.
John immediately said, “I could be that person for you.” It felt so good and so right when a hug led to a kiss that led to more. We were so close then and having a wonderful time together.
On March 20, 2012 John came to Napa and we met at our favorite little place. When I walked in, he was already there with a table for us. He stood up, tall and handsome with a smile and a sparkle in his green eyes.
It made my heart leap just a bit.
After a few hours of laughing and talking I opened my mouth and it came out again. Those words, that question that I had asked over a month ago.
“Do you see us in a relationship, John?”
His immediate response was the same as before. As my heart leapt earlier, it sank then. Why? I just didn’t understand. Everything felt so right between us.
We had the similar interests; our values were the same, our love for our kids identical. We had the same intellect and sense of humor. Hell, we had an amazing sex life. What the hell else could anyone ask for?
“I don’t get it. Why don’t you see us together?”
Then it happened. The words came out of his mouth that stung me like a bee. No, that’s not right, they hit me like a ton of bricks.
“Loretta, how many times and ways to I need to say this? I don’t ever see us in a relationship. As a matter of fact, I’ve been with someone else.”
There it was, all out in the open.
I stood up, said, “That’s a deal breaker” and walked out.
I walked to my car, not crying, just mad as hell. As I sat in my car trying to breathe and think, all I could come up with was, “No”.
So I got out of my car and walked right back into that little bar and saw John sitting on his bar stool, head down, staring blankly at my number on his phone.
… to be continued.