I'm still not dealing with Brian's leaving. I'm not writing about it, I'm not thinking about it. It's just there. All the time it's there. It hits me as I drive home, as I wake on the wrong side of the bed.

I don't blame him at all. I could wish he saw things differently, but if he hadn't left when he did, I'd still be waiting for the other shoe to drop.

And - I'm reluctant even to admit this, but it's true - sometimes when I sit alone wondering what to do, the thought hits me that I'm free, that I can go where I want, see whomever I choose.

I will. Soon. As soon as I can make myself stop waiting by the phone.

The BBS has taken on a new and somewhat disturbing life. I've had a slew of private emails, too. I'm pleased to see the message board finally becoming active, but some messages make me wonder if I should continue the journal at all. Hell, I even wonder if I should drop the domain name and delete the site.

Then, not only are the threats discouraging, but I have a problem with the attitudes about what others should be able to expect of me, as though my own feelings have no importance at all.

Yes, Brian is a nice guy, and yes, he deserved to know what was going on with me. But does that mean he deserves me, as he wants me? God, there are so many things wrong with that way of thinking that I don't even know where to start. He certainly doesn't deserve worse from me, which is what he'd get if I didn't consider my own feelings.

And what about Keith, why automatically assume that he's not a nice guy? I think he is, and I know him. You think I just let some jerk manipulate me into bed? Have you any idea what you're saying about me?

Enough. I'm getting angry, and that's the first time the site has ever done that to me.


Rain! Last night! Thunderstorms, wind, but most important, water. And cool temperatures. Today even felt a little cold, but that's probably just comparing the temperature to the blast furnace of the last few weeks.

Selky, my fat storm cat, didn't climb onto the bed to hide under the covers. Instead, I found him cowering under the bed, and he yowled as I lifted him up. But then he slunk under the covers and curled up against me.

Selky has been behaving strangely - as if any cat ever does anything else - since Brian left. Sometimes he ignores me completely. Sometimes he's over-affectionate. And sometimes he wanders through the house crying like a female in heat.

Until now, I thought he was pining for Brian, and maybe he is, but I'll take him for a check-up tomorrow.

Yesterday would have been the Big Day. In spite of my current hurting, I'm still glad that we didn't go through with it, even if I wish we were still together.

What I want, as ill-defined as that is, seems so far from what everyone expects of me that I do find myself wondering if I am letting myself down.

Before Brian, I didn't have any intention of looking for a long-term relationship. He changed my mind about that, even now it isn't the long-term part that I have a problem with. But I got "long term" confused with marriage and its associated trappings.

If marriage is necessary to staying together, then I guess I won't be looking to settle down within a guy in the foreseeable future. And as for the BBS message predicting future regrets - I can tell you that I would regret thirty years of being in a situation that I don't want to be in far more than I'll regret thirty years of drifting, if that's what my future holds.

Listen. I'm sorry that I treated Brian so badly. But I'm not sorry that he didn't get what he thought he wanted. He'd have been hurt far worse in the long term. And if he finds someone else to love, and ends up happily married, I'm sorry, but I don't see that as a reason for despair. He deserves a partner who will care for him like that, if that's what he wants.

Even if I had Done the Right Thing and told him what was going on with me, he'd still have been hurt, probably every bit as badly. Yes, okay, at that point it would have been his choice. But don't pretend he wouldn't have been hurt if I had tried to put things right earlier. He would.


I took Selky to the vet yesterday. He has some kind of blockage. Probably a hairball. He had lost about three pounds since his last vet visit. I'm worried about him, but the doctor thinks he'll be fine, I've got medicine to make him pass the hairball, and instructions on changing his feeding habits until he's eating normally again.

Today the vet called back. The results from the lab work he did came back. It looks like Selky's liver function is weak. That isn't the reason he's blocked, but it might be part of the weight loss. The vet wants me to put him on a special diet for older cats. Liver failure is irreversible, but I might be able to keep it from getting any worse for a time.