He calls me when he’s drunk and he says beautiful things that I’ve only ever dreamed of hearing. Beautiful things about me. I listen patiently as he repeats himself a time or two. Then he waits for a response and…well, I don’t know what to say.
A drunk man is too honest to be predictable. I can’t keep calculated responses saved up for moments like this. That only leaves me with the option of simply saying whatever comes to mind…you know, the way normal conversations tend to work. Except I can’t do that either.
Saying what I actually feel when he’s waiting at the other end of the line is far too dangerous for our relationship. First, because I can’t always be certain of what he’s saying when he starts to ramble. That’s half of the problem because I’ll respond to one thing and he starts saying something else. In turn, he takes my reply as one to Part 2 of the question. So far, that always leads to me giving the wrong answer.
Plus, you know, not every word is coming out crystal clear to begin with. So then if I do point that out, or even if I don’t, he’s suddenly accusing me of lying. That seems to happen every time he calls me this way. I tell him otherwise, but it’s no use.
The second reason I can’t respond on the spot is that I’m afraid he doesn’t mean any of it. He says these lovely things and I find myself falling harder and faster than ever before…but I can’t quite let myself totally believe what he says. I do think there’s truth to that phrase “drunk words are sober thoughts,” but I don’t think those thoughts are always ready to be told yet. So yeah, maybe he really does think I’m all of those wonderful things he said, but maybe he isn’t really ready to tell me that.
All I ever really manage to say in response to his compliments is thank you. His beautiful lists about me leave me smiling in the dark for hours. But I can’t start diving into the reasons I like him so much. I’m terrified to do that even in the daylight, let alone at 2 in the morning when just one of us is still sober.
To top it all off, I don’t know how much of tonight he’ll remember when he wakes up, so I have to do my best not to get my hopes up. It’s hard not to, but being let down is harder.
Maybe I shouldn’t have answered the phone. I didn’t the first two times, after all, but the third one got me. I can’t help that I sort of enjoy these phone calls. I love the honesty, even if it makes me nervous afterward. I’ll be up for a while now. I wouldn’t stand a chance against my mind in this frenzied state.