I neglected to give an update on Vix's investigation into her relationship with Doc. She finished reading through her email correspondence with him quite some time ago and, although it was wrenching, she seems to be the better for it.
I think the worst of it, for me, was the half day in which Vix turned on herself, placing all the responsibility for the failures of communication and understanding between her and Doc squarely on her own shoulders. She was awash in shame and guilt, then, and even wrote a note to Doc - who, at the time, was still incommunicado - apologizing for having missed his clear signals last fall that the shine was already wearing off and he was pulling back into more of a friendship.
That was a bad half day. It was also somewhat surprising in that, the night before, she had been placing all the responsibility squarely on Doc's shoulders - his immaturity, his lack of communication, his stunted emotional state, and so on.
The day after the low point, Vix read a little further on in their correspondence, and begin to see further mixed signals from Doc, much more the sense that Doc was - knowingly or not - stringing her along or, at least, feeding into her deeper love for him just to keep her from walking away from him.
Within a few days after that, her reading of the correspondence done, Vix began to settle into a clearer picture of the ways in which responsibility for miscommunication was shared between them. She also began to separate herself more from Doc, emotionally. She still cares for him, still values the friendship, still intends to spend time with him and, when he's back in the States, pursue some projects of mutual interest with him, but she sees more clearly his very serious limitations in his capacity to relate to other people.
She compared him to a toddler in a sandbox: he wants someone to play alongside him, or even just in the same box, but not to get too close or too personal, not to interact very directly.
We had a good laugh over that image . . . though I hasten to say it wasn't a mean-spirited laugh. It was more the laughter of recognition and, for Vix, it was laughter with a lot of affection in it.
The thing is, Doc really, really wants Vix to stay in the sandbox with him. It's important to him. And, within limits, Vix is willing to visit the sandbox again, to see what might be made of a friendship with Doc.
She says she's starting from square one, with no assumptions or expectations. I doubt it's that easy, but Vix has resolved to make it so, and I've learned to step out of the way when she has that look in her eye.
Doc started to come back into communications range a few days ago. Unprompted, having not yet read all the notes Vix had written in the mean time, he acknowledge his own responsibility for the misunderstanding between them regarding the terms and limits of their relationship.
He's at home now, in Europe, and so Vix should start to get a fuller picture as their correspondence resumes.
Vix is currently packing for a week away from home. She'll be one state away, touring around in pursuit of her avocation. Still buzzing from our date night, I'm generally quite calm about this absence . . . except that my younger daughter fell this weekend and seems to have fractured a bone in her wrist.
So, I spent a few hours in with her in the emergency room this evening, and now need to make arrangements to get her to an orthopedist in the next few days . . . amidst grading and meetings and after-school activities for the girls and . . .
I am staying calm. I am staying calm. I am staying calm. I am staying calm . . .
Last edited by hyperskeptic; 04-29-2013 at 02:06 AM.