I got up the next morning and went to school. I think maybe I’d slept two hours. I stood in the shower crying. My head pounded as I dried my hair and got dressed. I could barely think about anything while I was there. I only had two classes and then my journal class but I don’t check in with Mrs. Walker till next week. So I could have left early and almost got in my car to drive to the hospital a million times. But it had been raining all day and I wasn’t used to driving on the freeways in the rain. And it just gave me more time to really think about everything. I knew that Jack would be thinking that I was just like everyone else running away from him when things got tough. Even though he “literally” drove me away. I realized what he was doing before we even fought about it. But I just couldn’t be the one this time to give in. I’d felt so stupid chasing him around the streets of Montery Park until I was convinced that he was actually trying to lose me. But I was prepared and nailed him when he finally tried to make the excuses that I’d already known he’d make.
Finally last night as I pulled into my neighborhood his car was parked just inside the entrance where it was impossible to miss him. I stopped because I just didn’t want to make a scene in front of my house and my dad was home this week and well, he would never tolerate the way Jack tends to get. I pulled in front of him and he got out and I moved my books and he got in. I waited for him to start talking. And he started in right away about how I just fell off the face of the planet but how it was to be expected because he couldn’t count on anyone in his life.
I have discovered in dealing with Jack, when he gets like that, the best way to handle him, is to just apologize and sympathize with how he is feeling. NOT this time. I’d had it. And I’d had time to do plenty of thinking. There’d been a time when I’d even jumped on his car’s hood crying when he screeched away, trying to get him to stay and talk. Never again. I was ready. I put my hand up to stop him. This time he was going to hear me out.
I told him that I didn’t even want to talk about what happened when I was supposed to be following him. I told him that he knew exactly what he was doing and that I didn’t know where I was going and he lost me. He started to interrupt and I held up my hand and he actually stopped talking and let me continue which I have to admit kind of empowered me. I said that I knew that it was an uncomfortable situation with his mom and that he’d always dealt with it himself and that it why when he’d come home, he’d lose his the girl and the semester. I told him that if he got it together this time, I was in it for the long haul and he wasn’t going to lose the girl. All of a sudden, he just relaxed and reached for me but I held firm and again held up my hand and he rolled his eyes and I smiled and kind of laughed. And told him that I was serious that he really did need to get his act together. That I knew he lost me because he didn’t know what else to do. But it hurt my feelings and he’s lucky I am smart enough to figure it out. But I meant it. He needed to get his act together. Then I let him in for the hug and it was different than any we’d ever shared before. It was as if we’d both grown up a little.