I hugged the tattooed 26 year old father goodbye, and waited for my friend to pick me up from the airport. People exited the airport, and I’m one of the five people left. My phone goes off. “It’s so cold outside!” , reads a text from the man who left me minutes before. I smile. It makes me happy to know that he is thinking about me.
We talked a bit over text during my time in Edmonton, he even asked me out to dinner one night. I should have gone, but instead I was counting on having dinner with my friend whom I went to Edmonton to visit. That didn’t happen. When I arrived back in Ottawa, we began to talk more and more. We were texting back and forth constantly. What was I doing? Did I actually like this guy?…
I’m chit chatting with my roommates a couple of weeks after meeting him, and I go to check my phone. Missed call from the tattooed man. So, I called back to see what was up. “Hey” … “Hi..?” I replied as a sort of question, and there is a pause, so i continue, “you called?…” “Yea, how are ya?”.
That ‘how are ya?’ got me every time. There was something about his voice when he said it, like he actually cared how I was. His deep voice, with that Canadian country accent. I can still hear it when I think about it. Damn, I loved his sexy voice.
He had called me just to talk. Who the heck calls “just to talk”. This is a rarity now-a-days, but I love it. And so, our texting turned into mostly talking on the phone. We would talk in the morning, while he was at work, as soon as he left work, before my classes, after my classes, before bed. Whenever we were both free, we were talking on the phone. There is one time I remember that stands out. He sent me a Snapchat telling me he was having a shitty day and needed me to call ASAP. So, I called right away. He had ditched a piece of machinery and was waiting for someone to arrive to help him with it. This moment actually made me feel really special. He was frustrated and stressed, and I was what he needed to calm down. I’ve never been needed in that way before, it felt really nice, it made me happy actually. I was nice to feel needed… This may have been when it hit me. Shit. I was invested. I liked him.
About a month went by of us talking very often. I actually started to miss his voice when we went more than a day without talking. Again, what was I doing!? He worked two weeks in the oil field and then spent one week at home. That was his rotation. Oh well, I was willing to try it out.
He came home the week of the first Ottawa Senators vs. Toronto Maple Leafs game. He had asked me a week in advance if I had wanted to go because he had an extra ticket. (I later found out that he didn’t actually have tickets and just wanted an excuse to ask me out. He found tickets on Kijiji). The day of the game rolled around. The day Ottawa was struck by the devastating shooting of the soldier who had been guarding the War Memorial downtown. The game was postponed, and he felt it be best if he spent the day with his son. I completely understood. So, I didn’t see him that week.
He flew back to Alberta, and a week or so after that he stopped calling as much. I seemed to be the only one calling, and I started to feel kind of stupid. It started to seem one-sided. I decided I would ask him what was up. He told me that he had just been busy with work, and that everything was fine. He told me that he liked me and was willing to see where this went. But come on. I wasn’t that naive. I could tell there was something more. Days past and the conversation between us dwindled. My calls began to go unanswered. Except sometimes he would answer, sometimes he was really into the conversation, sometimes he was full of compliments. Why would you tell me you liked me and then ignore me every other day?
The next time he came back home, was 5 weeks after the week of the shooting in Ottawa. He had barely been talking to me, but I suggested that he stop by on his way home because I live relatively close to the airport. His response to that was that he would have if he didn’t have to pick up his son. The next day, he was being very flirty with me and was full of compliments. And then, the silence came. The silence that made me lose my appetite for days. The silence that made me lose sleep. The silence that gave me anxiety. A few days of silence and I noticed he had unfollowed me on Instagram and unfriended me on Facebook. All that and still no communication.
What did I do wrong? A couple more days past and I had an epiphany while sitting in class one day. The answer came to me. Nothing! I did nothing wrong! Usually there is something that I did that I shouldn’t have, but this time I was trying to be different from my past attempts. I was accepting of his baggage and his many flaws. I liked him. I gave up trying to understand what happened. I accepted that I would never know. The moment I accepted this, the sickness in my stomach that had been affecting me for days disappeared. I had accepted not knowing.
Almost two weeks had past by when I received a text message; the morning after I had celebrated my birthday.
“Sorry I stopped talking to you.”
My thoughts: Really bud? Really?!
I explained to him that it was really uncalled for and that I was wanting a reason… and then here it was. The reason…
“I’m trying again with my ex”
My thoughts: Oh yea? That ex that you claimed you never again wanted anything to do with. But ya, I get it, it is the mother of his one child. It is complicated.
“It has nothing to do with you Holly, it’s just for the best. I had to get myself away from you.”
My thoughts: Pfft. Damn straight it has nothing to do with me!.. you have to get yourself away from me? So what? Why are you telling me this now. Have you realized I was nothing but good to you. Ugh.
“You still look good in your pictures though…. You know, the ones you sent me.” (to clarify, those pictures were of the sexy variety but not nudes)
My thoughts: HA. HAHAHA! SERIOUSLY!
I told him it was disrespectful to his girlfriend to have those pictures and to say things like that to me.
So, there is it. Things ended just as suddenly as they started, but I guess that’s life sometimes.
The story of the tattooed 26 year old father. The one I tried to open my heart to.
The tattooed 26 year old father: The immature douche bag (that I didn’t know was a douche bag) that I met on October 2nd, on a flight from Ottawa to Edmonton.