Put it out, please. This is a smoke free zone…

This is the conclusion to my three part series.

 

I have been experiencing post traumatic second hand-smoke syndrome. I decided that my new crush didn’t smoke. Since I got over myself, I decided to invite him over to spend some quality time. When he arrived he reeked of smoke. Ewww Yuck!!! I had already asked numerous times, so I was not going to go through the charade of asking him if he smoked yet again. However, this sent my brain into a overdrive, so I needed something distracting that didn’t involve talking. We decided to watch a movie.

 

Not a good idea. As I settled in under him, I was overcome by the smell of smoke. I inhaled smoke vapors every time he exhaled. It was so pungent that I had to move to the opposite side of the couch. I didn’t know what to do or say. I mean had we not already talked about this strange smoke smell on numerous occasions? The only thing I could pin him down on was an occasional cigar. So I just prayed and asked that the smoke smell be replaced by something more aromatically pleasing. If a person is smoking an occasional cigar should I be able to smell it weeks later? Damn that’s a strong cigar.

 

As I sat there, each breath made me more distraught and agitated. I wasn’t able to focus on the movie and I kept thinking either this man is lying to me or I am crazy. Both are bad, but I was hoping it wasn’t the latter. I couldn’t hold it in. So after the movie I decided to voice my suspicion once again. I didn’t know how to broach the subject, so I just blurted out,

“You smell like smoke! I keep smelling smoke and it’s driving me insane! I really think I’m losing it. Are you lying to me? Please tell me why I smell smoke.” I suddenly felt all hot and I thought I was going to cry.

He just stared, then he took of his glasses and spoke. “Well I have a confession. I DO smoke, but I’m trying to quit.” Then he kind of smirked, or it was like a coy smile.

 

The horror, the tragedy, the woe, the grief. I don’t believe I was actually prepared for the truth, my worst fears were literally being spoken before my very ears. What was worse was that he said it like it was a joke, something funny we could both chuckle at.

 

Uhm No! You make me think I need to go see a therapist and you think we are about to laugh about it. I was relieved to say the very least. No couches for me, at least no time soon. I was hurt that he had lied to me because where is the point in lying in the beginning. The hurt quickly turned to irritation. I was all excited about the possibilities of having someone in my life, and now I had to deal with the fact that he was dishonest with me. What else has he lied about, fudged the truth on, embellished. I would have much rather dealt with him smoking. We would have worked through that easily. Lying is a nasty habit, that doesn’t go away with 12 step programs. That’s a character flaw, it’s exhibited everywhere, but to varying degrees. You have to decide what degree you are best suited to handle. I know what I can handle. I can only take “of course I love all your friends and family they are the best and your farting aunt, we all have our ticks that just makes her more endearing.”  Little white lies is all I can do. So while he is all grins and little boy charm, you know the grin, the one that relays I know I got caught and I know I’m wrong but please forgive me because its not like I did anything too bad. I’m just quiet.

 

He actually proceeded to tell me it wasn’t a big deal and we could work through it. He wanted to quit, had been trying to quit, and didn’t think something this minor should impact us. He explained that he was hesitant to tell me he smoked after I initially asked, but had been dishonest when I first asked because he wasn’t sure how he felt about me so he didn’t feel compelled to tell the truth. He felt by admitting to the cigars he was fessing up. It all sounded so sincere, but I couldn’t help but to remember all of my anguish over the origin of the smoke smell. This made me chuckle, but he mis-interpreted my chuckle and obviously thought I was cool. So he said,

“I’m so glad we are good on this, sometimes women have a way of blowing things out of proportion. That’s why I like you. You are always so cool about stuff.” And then he had the nerve to start chuckling himself.

Since he had no clue why I was chuckling, this instantly made me even more irritated. If I was going to forgive him, this instantly disappeared after his first chuckle. I suddenly didn’t feel so smitten, the butterflies flittered one last time and then died a painful death in my stomach acid, I didn’t want to giggle I just wanted to grumble, my heart returned to its normal pace, my sigh became a yawn, the excitement turned to exhaustion, he no longer sparkled and glistened he actually looked dull and a little greasy in spots. It was starling to see him in this light. Who was this in my house? I had no clue.

 

What happens to a dream of a man deferred? Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun?

Yes, it shrivels into something unrecognizable.

 

Thank you Langston Hughes!

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