Tom and I met for the fifth time yesterday afternoon. I took the train to B, a town fifteen minutes away, where he lives and works. He met me at the platform and once again seemed to want to shake hands while also kissing me on the cheek, which seems really weird to me. I had already put my hand on his shoulder, though, and just didn’t react. He had planned a small tour of the town with the help of a friend (a female friend) who knows it well. Tom himself has lived there for years, but never been to most places he took me yesterday. We got lost a few times which seemed to annoy or bother him. I told him we would find our way eventually and that it was fun to get lost a little. It seemed more adventurous and I really didn’t mind.
We walked through a beautiful park full of autumn melancholy, ducking under low branches and discovering statues. It could have been romantic as well as beautiful, but he again made not the slightest move. I had talked to Mrs. H and promised her to at least try to FACILITATE contact if I was too afraid to initiate, so I kept my bag out of the way and let my hand dangle by my side, but it seemed as if Tom actively tried to keep his hand from accidentally touching me. I think our elbows touched once. Then we climbed a steep hill with a ruined fortress on top where we had a wonderful view over the town and surrounding landscape. I found out that Tom is afraid of heights. I am, too, but only if I fear falling. If there is a wall or solid rail, it’s ok. Again, the thought crossed my mind that it would be a romantic place for a kiss or something. But by then I again wasn’t sure if I even was attracted to Tom.
We went to a cute little café for coffee and talked and after a few silences, conversation flowed a little more easily. We talked about music, about the music he had introduced me to, and I tried to explain how it made me feel. We also talked about our passions. His is old languages and mine is music and movement. I told him again that I am often at the mercy of my emotions, but am learning to manage them better. He said he was more the rational type, but he doesn’t seem exactly cold or machine-like. I wonder if and how much he feels his own emotions. He must have some; everybody has emotions. Could he love? Could he love me? Would it be enough for me? I know I have the potential to love very deeply. And maybe I could love HIM deeply. But while it crosses my mind often, I am keeping back. He needs to give me a sign first. I just can’t take the first step. And I don’t want to, either, if he is too shy, because I can’t respect or be attracted to a man who is SO reluctant. It isn’t manly in my opinion. And he CAN: he wrote to me first, he said he wanted to get to know me, told me my photos were pretty, suggested a meeting, told me he wanted to see me again, told me I was great, told me he really liked me when I told him the same. He is making plans for dates in December. He says things like ‘I’m really glad you like x’ or ‘you don’t like y’ as if he wanted to spend more time with me in the future. So, what does he want? Does he find me attractive? Or am I too fat, or too tall, too old-looking, or is it my personality? Maybe he thinks I’m a coward and not up to his standards because I am not ambitious in my career at the moment. Or he thinks all this ballet and exercise is a waste of time while I could read books and improve my mind? The fact is that through ballet and exercise, I am able to connect with myself and slowly heal all the damage I did and grow into a real person at last. But I can’t tell him that. I would have to tell him about my history of eating disorder, obesity, etc. and those are VERY unattractive things. Things I am ashamed of and don’t want him to associate with me. Or not at the moment. If we get closer, I will tell him, of course. But it would be weird to do it now. After all, we have only known each other for a few weeks.
Maybe there were more silences again yesterday because there are so many things I want to ask him that I feel I shouldn’t or am too afraid to ask. Maybe he feels the same. And we’ve covered a lot of other topics by text message, too. I really wonder about his history with love. I wonder about his friends. In the two weeks we have been writing to each other daily, he never mentioned meeting a friend. He is either at home or at work or at University. Is he lonely? Or does he like it this way? Is it just because he’s busy, or does he meet people but not mention them? After all, I didn’t tell him about Joel, either. But yes, if he is a member of that dating website, he must at least be wishing for a girlfriend. It’s a website you have to pay for, matching your personality to others’ with the goal of long-term relationships.
When we said goodbye last night at the station, it seemed to me as if he took a little more time with the kisses on the cheek. Or maybe we both did. At least, I remember the feeling of his cheek against mine clearly. We also have another date next week. Maybe it just takes a LOT of time?
Oh, why is this so complicated? I’ve come up against things I never considered before starting this dating adventure. I used to think it would be much more straight-forward. All those wondering thoughts, fears, insecurities are very confusing. But I must say that it is also very interesting! It has definitely shaken me up and given me new perspectives to think from, new worries, new joys. I don’t regret taking this step.