Strangers in the Night

by Jane Moneypenny

Well, Mel, you called it. Out of nowhere, Pen is back in my life. Although we’ve kept in touch on and off in the last year through emails and occasional Facebook conversations, I never thought much about it.

Then out of nowhere last week, we ended up talking for 4 hours until 2am on Facebook chat (for anyone who knows, this is dedication because it’s a crappy application and he’s an hour ahead of me in NY). A few more all-night chats the last few days and I think we’ve probably talked about everything most people avoid on the first date (sex, past relationships, religion, work…). Before all this, we had thrown around the idea of him visiting with Mr. Bruised Ego in the fall, but last night, out of nowhere:

“So, I have kind of a big question. How do you feel about a visitor in early August? I would love to spend time with you.”

I, of course, told him it was a great idea, but inside, I was panicking. Because, WHOA. This has never happened to me that a guy that I’m actually attracted to (more on this later) actually is interested and NOT because he’s trying to get in my pants. He’s probably the last existing old-fashioned single male out there with only old-fashioned dates, maybe a kiss at the door and sex only when it’s serious (ha, remember when I was like this a year ago?).

It feels foreign, strange, terrifying and exciting. My friends don’t seem to grasp why this is scary, but emotionally, how is it not? Every guy that I’ve ever been interested in or attracted to was either completely unavailable or running for the hills because they only wanted to get some. And now, there’s a guy who isn’t looking for that and is interested in me for solely me. Yes, it’s great, but it’s also making my chest freeze up and my heart panic.

Firstly, it feels like we’ve been online dating and we’re about to meet for the first time even though we’ve already met. Will be be awkward? What if it’s completely wrong in person? What if it’s just uncomfortable?

Secondly, I’m not sure the physical attraction is 100% there for me. This grows over time, of course, but as most girls know, once you realize there is none of that chemistry/attraction, it’s over and the guy is delegated to the friend zone no matter how much you like his personality. With Mr. Pilot and Mr. Co-worker, the physical attraction was so instant, but of course never made up for the lack of spine on their part. What if it doesn’t show up? Having been here before where the guy really likes me but I feel nothing because of the lack of attraction physically, I just end up feeling awkward.

Third, I’m not terrified of getting hurt at all (strangely) in this case, but more the fear of what this COULD mean. A guy who actually is upfront, doesn’t play games and compliments me sincerely? What am I supposed to do with that?!

So I guess I’m going to just breathe and roll with it and be myself with no expectations. Easier said than done…