A Moment in My Life – Thursday, October 7, 2021
Jeannie Yee Davis
When I think back to days not so long ago when I used to hand out my calling card with every contact information I had on it to strangers, I get the willies now. I was so trusting. Everything felt safe and uncomplicated. I remember my older sister asking me one day if I was giving out too much information to people, and I shrugged my shoulders and continued doing what I was doing. I wanted to live what I preached, and that was that I’m an open book. What you see is what you get. Lucky for me, I never ran into any problem people.
Although people back then were more reclusive and tended towards their little clique, and that was it. Not a big deal. It wasn’t like I was hard up for friends. I have many cliques of my own anyway. I wanted to connect with and be friends with everybody, and that was pre-FB. I believe you can never have too many friends, that’s all.
I didn’t expect the different flavors of people I would recently meet that ended up challenging me in unexpected ways. One thing for sure I did not expect, and that was to lose trust in people. I’ve never been afraid of people before. One time, I was about to ask a street person home for thanksgiving. Thank God I couldn’t find him so that I couldn’t invite him. Later I learned he was a fugitive on the lam wanted by the US Marshalls—like in the movie. That’s another story for another day. My point is that I wasn’t afraid of people.
You don’t know what you don’t know until you know. That’s how we learn about life. Who would think that an old friend from high school would have you jumping out of your seat because he couldn’t keep his hands off you from across the table? You know, I love cuddling and hugs just as much as the next person, but I tell you, there is a time and place for everything. I don’t welcome being grabbed or touched, especially not by certain people. It baffles me to think that we’re all adults here and behaving like school kids.
Yeah, we had a crush on each other back in high school, and our story was a lot like a movie where we lost touch, went our separate ways, and he found me on FB one day. Now we’re both single, and he thinks it’s our second chance. It’s one-sided thinking. The feeling is not mutual, especially when he wants to skip the getting-to-know-each-other stage and take me on a road trip in his RV. I think not. I’ve never been and never will be that kind of girl. Here’s where I told him, “Hit the road, Jack, and don’t you come back no more!” After this incident, I lost trust, and I feared this guy. Luckily, he couldn’t come to my house because he never bothered to jot down my address from my Christmas card, and my older sister would be so pleased that I refused to give him my address when he asked for it.
On the opposite end of the spectrum was my stalker, who, unlike Hit-the-Road-Jack, who couldn’t care less about getting to know me, Stalker got into every nook and cranny of my space. Stalker came into my life soon after the incident with Jack, and I don’t know what it was, but I felt red flags from the get-go, and something inside me hesitated, so I did not give Stalker my contact info. Thank God for that! Initially, I wasn’t sure if it was nerves from the rawness of the Jack episode or what, but Stalker didn’t help. It was too much, too soon—both of them pushed me out of my comfort zone into areas that I did not want to go.
It’s been a challenging year where one friend told me I needed to change my venue for meeting people. I laughed. I know he meant well, but I wasn’t trying “to meet people.” These episodes happened to happen, and that was it. I’ve lived a pretty uneventful life with normal relationships. Then these episodes happened, making me question the purpose. They sent me on a journey that I never expected before, and maybe they will end up in my fiction stories—that’s the only place I plan to let these stories play out.
Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about what my older sister said. She’s right. I need to be wiser in what I share. These two guys didn’t know where I lived, but still, for a spin, they had me pretty scared that they might show up on my doorstep. I had nightmares of Stalker sitting outside in his car on my street watching me. Not a healthy way to live. Since then, I’ve redone my calling card with select contact information on it.
The takeaway from these experiences taught me that it is good to give people the benefit of the doubt, but I shouldn’t be so quick to trust everybody because we need to earn trust. If trust isn’t solid, it doesn’t take much to lose the trust.