So Nice to Come Home to
"You know what I really love? The way you always make people feel at home. The way you just smile at people when they come in and make them feel comfortable. You have a real gift there."
We had sat down on the couch and she smiled at me like I had to thank her for the compliment. It made me feel awkward.
"I don't know what to say to that...just..."
"No, it's okay. It's just something I hope will always be there, you know. Between us. This is really home to me."
I felt the words like a stab, but it also brought a dizzying instance of insecurity with it. What was she saying? Did she want to come back?
"But this is not your home anymore, Lynn. This is my home. I just wanted for you to get your stuff, maybe... I don't know, I thought maybe you wanted to say something to me. Not that, not feeling at home here. I can't have you say that."
"Oh, Henry, I..."
"Don't 'oh, Henry' me, darling. You left and suddenly you say this thing to me about this being your home. It's not. You left. And this is my home. Just because I'm too nice to put your stuff out with the trash doesn't mean... anything. It means nothing."
She made a face like I had just ruined a kind of reunion, something she might have feared, but thought would go okay when I smiled at her, inviting her in. But I'm not the one who made shit awkward between us. She did.
"Listen, I know I... made a mess of things--"
"You hurt me."
She closed her eyes, but nodded. "Yes. And I'm sorry. Break-ups are never easy and it hurt me, too. Having to hurt you."
I wanted to interrupt, I wanted to tell her that I didn't need to hear about her pain. But what do you do? You sit, you listen, you get very angry over the bullshit that just spills out of your ex's mouth. To think I used to kiss those lips!
"But I really want us to be able to maintain a kind of... civility? If that's at all possible. I mean, you're important to me. I loved you so much, and there's still so much feeling."
I smiled, but she didn't seem to interpret it as bitter. Feeling. Her feelings. It was always about that. Her feelings for me in the beginning, she was overwhelming. And then I changed - transitioned, as they say. And her feelings were mixed. She explained a lot - about her feelings. But we didn't have sex anymore, she didn't like my hairy chest, my hairy face, the hair that thinned on my head. And after the surgery, she told me how she missed my boobs. I didn't miss my boobs. My boobs were always uncomfortable to me, something I had explained to her on our second date. My feelings about my boobs didn't matter as much as her feelings about my boobs once they were gone.
And so it ended. After that last time when I fucked her like God knows how hard. And she came, and came, and came again. And three days later she told me it was over. And two days after that I saw her with this girl, kinda like me before the transition - butch, but with gigantic boobs. She saw me, too. She looked awkwardly away, but I knew that her feelings were bullshit. Her feelings were superficial. She never felt for me, she felt for my boobs, she felt my boobs, she felt comforted by my boobs. The way I felt uncomfortable with anything to do with my boobs.
"You know, I want you to take your stuff and go," I said. I looked her straight in the eyes, saying it.
"You're being hostile."
"Well, you're being ridiculous. You never loved me, or you couldn't have hurt me like that."
Her face says that everything that happened between us was my fault. My transition, my changing - only she knew from the beginning what would happen. Did she think my feelings about my boobs would change, just because she loved them?
She has this incredulity on her face, like, how dare he? If she even thinks of me as he, I was never sure.
"You know, I'm not an asshole. I didn't mean to hurt you. And it was you who..." She points at my body - my chest-area, of course - and blows her cheeks. She doesn't say it, because she knows there's transphobia hidden in everything she is thinking right now.
"You knew I was transitioning. I never lied to you about that."
"I thought you would reconsider."
Now I laugh. I always knew. The label 'girl' always made me uncomfortable. I hated my first name. I detested when people called me Mrs. ... and I had told Lynn all that. Not just once. She knew and knows, she just chooses to ignore, because she wants me to be responsible for the break-up, for her breaking my heart.
Whatever. I'm so done.
"I just want you to take your stuff and go," I repeat. I'm tired of this. I have no patience anymore.
"What is all that even? I thought I'd taken everything with me."
"You haven't. It's bits and odds, just little things."
"I probably just wanted you to throw those out. Kinda telling that you called me about something that is basically trash."
"If you wanted to throw them out, you should've just done that. Do it on the way out, you know where the trash cans are."
She looks at me. She's pissed. She wanted to make nice, play the 'lesbian friendship forever' card. Well guess what, Lynn? I'm not a woman anymore, I don't have to be friends with people who treat me like shit!