In part 6 of The Shawna years I discover what I was truly seeking from Shawna. In this one I recall one of the truly fulfilling moments of our friendship. I realize what had triggered me from part 3 The I Love You Conundrum. When it comes to true love who comes first? Read on and find out what happens next.
It is now the middle of 1996 and I am out of Job corps living in downtown San Diego on my own. For the first time in my life I am living independently. Making ends meet by working 35 hours a week and 6 dollars an hour. I couldn’t afford much so I was living in a residential hotel in a room so small it would make a prisoner complain. But it was all mine. Even though I had to go down the hall to take a shower, in a private room of course, I was proud to be on my own.
Shawna and Tim were still together and both at Job Corps. We still kept in touch and one day she decided to come over with Tim to visit me. Tim and I got along great so there was no tension between us. I think that when Shawna told Tim that I was the reason they got back together it smoothed our relationship. She let him know in no uncertain terms that he would have been done for if I hadn’t talked her back into getting back with him. Tim was great to her. I liked him for her so being that I loved her and wanted the best for her it was only right that I think of her and not myself and let her know she was making a mistake. Once Tim knew I was not some asshole male friend waiting for his opportunity to swoop on in like a vulture he knew he could trust me. He was old enough to know that a lot of guys who are just friends will take the first chance they get to denigrate the current boyfriend so that they can have a shot at a girl. But that is not me. I believe that love does the right thing and love is not supposed to be selfish. Sometimes Shawna and I would go out to a movie on our own and Tim was like “Did you enjoy the movie?” And he was totally cool, he never gave me any kind of crap nor did I give him any. Having Tim as her boyfriend allowed me to be happy for Shawna which in and of itself had a lot of value to me so I will always like Tim for that.
Tim and Shawna come over to my not so deluxe apartment in the sky and Shawna had been drinking a little bit. She wasn’t drunk by any means but she was feeling it a little bit. So here we are some 13 months after we had met, some 7 months after I first told her I loved her and with Tim right there she tells me”I love you,Marc.” Nice timing, Shawna, real nice. I said nothing. This was really awkward for me. Tim is right there, what will he think? So of course having said nothing Shawna repeats herself “Did you hear that Marc? I love you.” Sometimes I just think the Universe is out to fuck me, and this was one of those times. I sheepishly told her ” I love you too.”
That moment meant a lot to me. I had secretly been stewing for 7 months about her not telling me she loved me after I told her. All of those feelings I had about not being valued the same as others had come to the surface. I wondered why Rachel got an I love you and I didn’t. I had thought about an old fried Natalie who knew me for years and had never hugged me and then met my friend and within 20 minutes when they said goodbye she hugged him. These kind of things make me feel like I am some sort of an asshole. These things make me feel undervalued. Instances like these make me feel like women. although the like me, they enjoy being my friend don’t have a real connection to me. Natalie is the reason I was triggered by Shawna’s missing I love you from months ago. These things anger me. But anger is just hurt covered up with several blankets. Her I love you although awkward and poorly timed was what I needed. I needed to know I meant something to her.