Fight or flight

“The “fight or flight response” is our body’s primitive, automatic, inborn response that prepares the body to “fight” or “flee” from perceived attack, harm or threat to our survival.” – MInd/Body Education Center

Do you fight or flee? I think life often dictates our response for us. However, last night I recognized my flight response in full effect . . . and while it was subconscious, it required conscious action, hence the recognition. 

Background:  I live in two cities. I have two separate lives. WIth the exception of my dog and my work, the components of my life fail to transcend their locale. Perhaps, that is why I have been seeking continuity . . . 

My home- New York, my new home, a Spanish-speaking Island. I go back and forth, bi-monthly. However, each trip to the island is extended . . My life here makes me happy. I doubt if I will fall in love here, but the continuity, the routine, the warmth, and like in Cheers, it’s where “Everybody knows your name.” For a newbie, I found these elements a relief from the stressful, obligatory, exhausting life I CREATED in New York. Yes, the life I CREATED. I too, have the power to create a New York life that is balanced. However, in the island it was effortless to do so. New York requires a spring cleaning of friendships, routine, belongings, and an introduction to simplicity. New York offers many things however, that are pretty amazing. So, my double life actually creates an inherent balance. 

So, last night . . 

At dinner I was silenced. Exhausted from the prospect of wine. In conflict because I wanted to order champagne and pay (knowing that I had to go to an event and acknowledging the wine would impede my ability to do so) However, as I knew the owner would pick up the bill, I couldn’t bear to ask for champagne. However, common friends came fifteen minutes after we were already served a bottle of pinot grigio and ordered themselves a bottle of champagne. I realized that there was a fancy activity before, I wondered as to what it was, why I was excluded. I figured it was for something specific. I sat exhausted. Trying to understand the Spanish, but following nothing. Pretending as if I was engaged. Trying to say something to counter my obvious mood, yet without understanding the conversation, I found myself mute. 

As I arrived at the later event with the common friends, a woman I know said hi to me wondering why I wasn’t at the fancy activity. I had no clue. I thought about whether I wasn’t sophisticated enough, or pretty enough, or was I too pretty, too young, too foreign? I looked around at the familiar faces, the smiling faces from the gym, the woman i thought were destined to be great future friends, and MiCarino who likes me SUPER. The “friends” all engaged, i stood in their peripheral, alone. I had nowhere to go. I realize that loneliness transcends locales.

 I longed to book a ticket to New York. My flight response, in full effect. I wanted to disappear from here. I want to run from potential conflict with MiCarino, escape to New York, impose a freeze in hopes that it will fix itself. Run from the knowledge of a potential superficiality in these new relationships that have warmed me and made me love this island and disengage from my old life.

I think of what waits for me in New York- Matt Damon, one great friend, many stalled friendships whose truths have been exposed from my geographic distance, new friendships still in their inception, parties, beautiful people, energy, culture, central park, cabs, food, smiles, low-key glasses of wine, a TV!, decisions and avoiding the weekend with Matt, or the conflicting weekend with the friend, making plans, obligations, stress . . . 

 

In short, my double life, an inherent tool, for my flight response has a catch. You can flee from both places, but when you return you will be forced to fight. 

 

I suppose its time for me to fight my stresses. Say hi to my subconcious.

Advertisements

Don’t fall for me

I have been single for more than a year and a half … And during that time, there have been many moments where I wonder what happened to the moments where men feel in “lust” with me–my good friend, “KidRobot” (one who I initially dated upon meeting and who told me he loved me) told me years ago people feel in love with the idea of me, not actually me. I believe it was his own rationalization, regardless, it may hold a certain truth.

I suppose it was a curse in a way as some of these men were only friends I adored. Consequently, hurting people and running away became a common theme. I punished myself. I wished for this to end, and my wish was granted. This past year has been without these men who appreciate me, my intelligence, my goofiness, my ambition ..instead its been marked by an emotional relationship with my hairdresser  and much suppressed pain over never-ending games with two unavailable men. Both “good guys”, generous, charismatic, loyal, handsome, ambitious ….the dialog or games continue…

You see as much as I am an independent woman, I am one who enters a room as an observant .. I am social but can be shy until the situation is assessed. My dealings with men are the same. (Men take note) I see it as a dance … I will remain in sync with you. I am not going to pursue you without reason to do so. I am not going to call you multiple times without you doing the same. I am not going to tell you how much I think of you, how much I crave ripping your clothes of, how much I would prefer to do nothing with you over anything else- if I fail to be any sort of priority to you. When you call, I still melt and I suppose this is why these relations continue …. No reason to end them. No psycho girl, no girl you can hurt– I am too indifferent, well seemingly.

However, as Mr. Titanium, one of the aforementioned ‘unavailable guys’ said, “You are so pretty and smart and unattainable.” …… “The problem with you is you’re too sane” referencing how I am not self-deprecating and don’t take men’s’ bullshit, my seeming indifference (If only you knew the countless moments and thoughts dedicated to Mr Titanium. As much as I seem above it, I fail to be emotionally so) … Regardless, thanks Mr. Titanium…yes I didn’t take your bullshit, and now you have raised the question as to whether I should have put myself out there ..

However, I know that when a man falls for you, when he stands to be the one who will be “all about you”, the one who is not going to be an emotionally distant boyfriend, there is something which I will call “when he goes SUPER,” much like the men who feel in lust with me. This term was coined last week as I explained a story to the owner of the restaurant next door to my apartment on the island, we will call him “MiCarino.” I was trying to explain how you know when a guy falls for you and when he likes you. I was trying to differentiate between a guy who is interested in you and a guy that is enamored with you- as I explained, MiCarino excitedly questioned, “When he goes SUPER?!” It must be explained I am on a Spanish-speaking island . . regardless, so SUPER it is!

So I explained to MiCarino how I may be returning to New York as the guy who I was spending time with in New York, “Matt Damon,” wanted me to come back for a certain event. I planned to go, but an uh-oh moment occurred upon the realization that if I went, he would fall for me. It would demonstrate that I was onboard… and I am not. I like him, but I will hurt him. How do I know? Because he went SUPER. My avoidance tactics are in preparation– I am ready to say goodbye to the moments I enjoyed and the many more I know I would.

I suppose after a year of unavailable men, i have started to attract the other extreme, again. Appropriately so, I have another problem, MiCarino has gone SUPER. I have seen him almost everyday . .

And I feel like a fucked up girl. There is nothing I want more than to share life and moments and the intimacy that only comes with a relationship. ….but here I am, looking for the brakes or to tie my laces and take off running ….kicking myself for kissing MiCarino the other night, kicking myself for telling Matt I missed him. Both actions are true and honest, both men make me smile.

Yet, they don’t feed my neuroses. I am not addicted to them. I enjoy both of them and I wonder to myself if that is enough. A part of me continues the path, as it feels right, but then I think about the future, I think about how I don’t foresee one. I realize I may hurt them if I enjoy these moments and get to know them any more.

And I am stressed out . . . If only I was better at confrontation.

KIDROBOT- for his creative genius. His departure from the suited world and into one of the extreme. For his refusal to dress his age and for his seeming refusal to act it- however, underneath, he is a man and is warm, kind, emotional and intelligent- and i do love his existent child. We are just too different, so we will be friends forever with the exception of our current fight. I think due to his underlying feelings (1-2008, “I have never stopped loving you”) and the refusal to admit that our futures don’t coincide- he has chosen to resent me instead.

MICARINO- Because he is warm and charming. Likable and sweet. I have only known him two weeks but he has an unmatched ability to make me feel cared for. Not attracted to him though and I see him as a best friend.

MATT DAMON- Because he bears an uncanny resemblance to Matt Damon. He is wonderful. Not my typical type, but a good guy. And not an unavailable good guy. Younger and I don’t know if he is enough of a man for me. I think I have his dream job. Awkward.