for two, a table?

read somewhere about old couples sitting together in restaurants and eating without talking to one another. think it said something about them having said everything there was to say and enjoying their time together in silence nonetheless.

i’ve experienced that silence early on in a relationship and it wasn’t because we’d said everything there was to say. it was because one or both of us didn’t care about what the other had to say. sometimes i’d sit there eating and wonder why on earth we’d gone out and whether the effort to do something together meant more than actually communicating with words. i’d look around at people and consider how much we didn’t have in common and whether that was the reason we didn’t talk. i’d see a man reach over and touch the woman he was with while looking in her eyes and look away before being caught. i remember a loneliness, a sinking feeling, a sense i’d never know what that or any kind of intimacy outside of sex felt like. i wasn’t even sure if that was a thing. i wasn’t even sure if sex was intimacy, an animalistic need, or a way to feed my appetite for birthing children. we weren’t having sex anymore. i was done birthing. so i’d order enough food for two people because being at a restaurant felt as if it should be celebration and outside of the food i didn’t see what else there was to celebrate. i’d eat just enough to feel sick, to forget the old couples, the new ones, and the fact that the person in front of me didn’t have a clue who i was.

edit: this is a slight rewrite from a prior write and comes up from the depths as i sit here watching couples and how they communicate not just with one another but with their children, those with little ones. it fascinates me for a number of reasons and if i had the balls i’d walk up to these people and ask them deep dive type questions about their relationship, not because i’m nosey but because they all have something they can teach me. but geez how awkward i’d cause them all to feel. on another note i haven’t thought about my ex this way in a long long time but now i can appreciate that he taught me how to recognize the difference between a painful silence and an enjoyable one.

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