Life has become confusing, but not in an upsetting way. I keep discovering things new to me--things people around me simply accept. Today I was visiting a friend's Facebook page and noticed the year was no longer visible on her birth date, and just for a tiny moment I thought of my own birthday and for the first time since I was a small child I felt a twinge of excitement, not in anticipation of anything celebratory, but a simply feeling of "that is my day--that's when I was born," and it felt amazing. I seem to be discovering me, independent of the approval or judgment of any other person; I know of no other way to describe it.
When I went to bed last night, Darrin mentioned, as he does each year, that he was planning my Christmas present. I felt the customary protest form on my tongue: Please don't--let's spend our money on the kids. I don't need anything--or want anything, really. Just spend time with me, that's all I want... The words didn't come out. Thoughts flew rapidly through my head, memories of the time I spend choosing gifts for others, personalizing them, basing them on previous conversations or past experiences, appreciating the fact that there are people in my life I know and love so much that I find incredible delight in finding gifts for them. For so many years I have never allowed the people I love to do the same for me. I've discouraged and rebuffed their attempts to find out what I might like, selfishly keeping my deepest thoughts, likes and dislikes hidden from even the person who loves me so much he wants to spend his entire life with me.
I closed my lips over the habitual words and said instead, "I can't wait to see what you find." Darrin didn't say anything, but I found my hand suddenly held in his--too tightly. I felt a mixture of shame, regret, and oddly, anticipation and joy. It's a lot to absorb, but not unpleasantly so.
Today I cancelled a meeting and a rather crucial rehearsal. I will finish my work, pay some bills, do a bit more Christmas shopping and then go home to prepare food for our family tree-trimming party. Tomorrow I will meet with friends for our traditional pastry-making, and Sunday my last performances of the year will take place.
I am getting to know Samantha. I don't like all that I find, but I think I might be falling in love. And I don't really care what that sounds like. For so many years I've been running away from someone rather amazing. It's time for me to embrace her.