You know...there's a certain way that my mom has been looking at me lately that has become a rapidly increasing cause of discomfort for me. It's not just that she's looking at me...it's more like she's examining me. She looks at the way I walk, she analyzes the way I talk, she pays closer attention to the way that I dress...I mean, am I being paranoid here? This can't just all be in my head. Why is she watching me like that? Why does she sometimes smile when she catches me staring off into space for a quick moment during dinner? Why do I feel like she tries to eavesdrop in on my conversation whenever I talk to Lori on the phone now? She's being a damned detective again, isn't she?
All I can think about now is how Lori keeps telling me how blatantly obvious it is that I'm in love. That it flows from every pore and that I'm practically fighting my every sissy urge to keep from skipping through the streets, whistling showtunes. Is my love for Jesse really making me that transparent?
I was sitting at the dinner table with her tonight, chowing down on some tasty chicken stir fry and drinking a soda...when I noticed her giving me this really awkward smirk. She was all dreamy eyed and being weird, sort of playing with her food instead of just eating dinner like a normal human being. NOW what did I do???
I'm like, "...What?"
"Nothing. Can't I look in my son's direction without arousing suspicion?" She grinned.
"Not if you're going to look at me like that. No." I tried to just focus on my food, but I think she actually 'sighed' as she watched me eat a forkful of food. I swear, at this point, I'm just going to start eating dinner on the back porch or something from now on.
"So...you're still going way back out to the big mall on Saturday, huh?" She asked.
Does she not understand that trying to force me to talk to her about this only has ONE outcome? And that is me wanting, even more, to AVOID talking to her about this!
I didn't even answer at first. I just gave her a brief look and took a sip of my soda. She stopped pushing, but she seemed a little sad that I didn't want her so closely involved in the naughtier parts of my life. That wasn't what I wanted. I'm not trying to hurt her feelings or anything, it's just...ugh! It's hard enough for me to figure this out, what help can she possibly hope to offer me? Seriously. There's probably a whole week long dialog that she and I have to have about me being gay in the first place that has to happen before we even come close to getting around to falling for a boy I saw on YouTube.
I'll tell her! I promise, I will. Just...not right now. Not at some random moment over a plate of chicken stir fry and a soda.
I just wish she could be a little more patient with me on this. It's like she can't WAIT to jump in and start being 'Super Mom'...which is great. It really is. It's just not what I need right now. I hope she can understand that for just a little bit longer while I find my own footing on this. Thinking about it is awkward enough. Talking about is going to take some more practice. Well, when it comes to my mom, anyway.
I just remember washing the dishes, and then making sure to give my mom a kiss on the cheek to let her know that I loved her. It was hardly a graceful substitute for actually talking to her about my 'gooey gumdrop' feelings for the cutest boy on the internet, but at least it was better than a total rejection. Maybe it'll keep her from being too sensitive about it all until I'm ultimately ready to spill the beans.
To be honest, I'm actually looking forward to being ready. It might actually be a huge relief for me.
I went to my room and shut the door. I had homework to do, but my mind was hardly in the mood to concentrate on anything for longer than a few short seconds at a time. Anything other than my new boyfriend. Wow...I still get this awesome 'rush' when I say that word to myself. Boyfriend. I think about Jesse kissing me on his front porch...and at the mall...and in his bedroom when we...well, you know. I heard myself sigh out loud and I just laid back on my bed, practically squirming from the quivering sensation in my tummy. I couldn't sit still. This was killing me.
A big part of me really wanted to be happy. To run through the streets, half naked, and scream from the highest rooftops that I was completely swept up in the glory of true love. But then...there was another part of me that was so inexperienced, so confused about what I was doing, what I was feeling, what it meant, and where it was going...that showing any brazen confidence in this situation felt like a set up for an utterly embarrassing failure. How can I be proud of something when I'm so hopelessly lost?
Fuck this homework! I've got to call Lori. She'll listen to me bitch and moan for a while and maybe I'll get rid of some of these infatuated jitters before they start making me nauseous.
I pressed her contact and Lori picked up on the first ring. "Talk to me, gorgeous." She said.
"Help me..." I groaned.
"Ugh! Not again. Are you kidding me?" She groaned back at me. "Hold on a sec. Let me get some place quiet."
"I'm sorry. Am I being a pest?"
"I'll let you know in a minute. Give me your 30 second pitch, Cupid." She said. "Is this a good Jesse moment? Or a bad Jesse moment?"
"Ummm, neither, actually. And...both. I don't know." I hope that didn't sound as crazy to her as it did to me. "I think I just need to...talk about him. Channel my excess energy into something positive, you know? I know that sounds lame..."
"That doesn't sound lame at all." She said.
I rolled over onto my side to curl up into a ball. Where was this overflow of emotion even coming from? "I can't stand being this hopelessly in love, Lori. I feel like it's eating away at me and I don't know if I want it to stop. I barely know what to do with myself anymore."
"I'm pretty sure you've had quite a few ideas of what to do with yourself before you called me up, and I hope to God you washed your hands afterward. Hehehe!"
She got a soft giggle out of me, but it quickly went back to a dreamy sigh, and I rolled over on my other side to curl up again. "I really am sorry about this. You know...whining to you about him is my only outlet for this insanity. Without you, I honestly think I'd explode."
"Lucky for you, I don't charge for my particular brand of best friend therapy. But, for what it's worth, I couldn't be more selfish about deriving pleasure from seeing you like this. How long have we known each other now?"
"Too long." I grinned.
"Darn right. And I've seen your ups and your downs and everything in between. There have been times when I was really worried about you feeling so alone, Tristan. And it sucked because it was an empty spot in your life that I couldn't possibly fill." Then she grunted, "Then that friggin' Neanderthal, Jason Fixx, got involved and he ended up making things infinitely worse. But...some of that was my fault too. I kick myself every day for allowing that situation to go as far as it did."
"What? What are you talking about? Jason was just...a stupid mistake on my part. One that I wish I could take back, or at least erase from my memory." I told her. "But none of that was your fault."
"No, Tristan. I feel like it is. I knew that guy was trouble from day one. I knew it. From the second you secretly pointed him out in the hallway to the first time you went down on the creep in that alley. I just...I bit my tongue and I refused to say anything because you were happy. At least, temporarily. You had this big smile on your face, and a sparkle in your eyes, and it was like...you didn't seem so empty anymore." She said. "God, I hate Jason Fixx sooooo fucking MUCH for breaking your heart the way he did!!! But...you're the best friend I ever hop to have in this life. I wasn't going to keep you away from a few moments of freedom away from feeling so isolated all the time. It was really scary for me to watch you spiraling downward like that, Tris. I wasn't quite sure how else to help you other than standing out of the way and letting you get some while I secretly hoped somebody better would come along. You know?"
"Still, though...that wasn't your fault. I was blinded by the misguided belief that there was somebody out there for me. Not Jason, specifically. Just...somebody. Anybody. It was such a foreign concept to me, the idea that I'd ever be able to kiss another boy and..." Suddenly, I clammed up and walked over to my bedroom door to peek out into the hallway to make sure my mom wasn't sneaking around again. I quietly closed the door and sat on the floor at the foot of my bed. "...I never thought I'd be able to kiss another boy and have him like it the way I liked it. Or that he would want to kiss me back. It certainly never crossed my mind that another boy would want to kiss me FIRST! That might as well have been science fiction as far as I was concerned. So many cute boys...and they were all so hopelessly out of reach. I couldn't talk to them, couldn't touch them, couldn't stare at them for too long for fear that they'd catch on to my intentions. I'll admit, it hurt. For a long time, it really hurt." I said, "I guess that pretty much made me an open target for somebody like Jason Fixx to waltz in and get me all screwed up in the head, huh? I totally made a victim out of myself."
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