Sex and the City did not prepare me for this. Carrie never sat down at brunch one morning and said, "Hey, girls, the oddest thing happened this morning-- I woke up, and Mr. Big was gone to work, with no note!" We never discussed what to do when you are left with bedroom carte blanche! I WAS NOT EQUIPPED FOR THIS. No one, it seems, has ever given much thought to this situation before, or at least, not thought of it as an issue that needed any forethought. We all know, at this day and age, what to do the morning after. But what do you do when you're the last person left the morning after?
There are common-sense general perimeters for this sort of case-- don't still be there when he gets back, because that would mean that I would have slept in...for another 6 hours; pick up and lock up after yourself; and for god's sake, don't snoop!-- but I still was wobbling between secure and frantic now that my training wheels had been taken off. Good sign? Bad sign? Indifferent sign? Maybe he just didn't feel like having to go through any early morning shit-chat today, you know: "How's the weather/What are you up to later/What are the headlines?" Or maybe he just didn't want to have to share breakfast.
So, like Carrie does with Miranda and Charlotte and Samantha, I turned to what I supposed was my best hope for a second opinion: two of my girlfriends, one in a committed relationship, and one committed to having lots of relations with lots of different men, for advice on time frames for sleeping in more and if I should text when I left or not. After echoing each other-- "No note?! Well, at least he's comfortable enough with you to leave you alone with all his things," (I certainly would never leave anyone alone in my room for more time than they could get in trouble in,)-- they came through with the same answer: you should be able to sleep in for at least another hour, but after that, leave quickly, and text to let him know. Done, and done.
On my walk home in bright sunlight and the gently drifting downward leaves of late fall, I was caught between reveling in my extra hour of sleep and worrying. I liked it, being left to my own devices, to wake, dress, and go home at my leisure on my day off. Was I supposed to like it? Or did I really want to be woken up and said goodbye to, properly? Or do I really love uninterrupted sleep more than waking up and having to fit some logical puzzle pieces together to solve the mystery of the missing man? Was comfort a good thing, or a bad thing? And most of all, why had no one ever pulled us aside before, like your girl friends did when they first discovered orgasm, and gave you the play book? Why did they never tell us that this was a situation to prepare for? Who had the answers before this morning? Who still doesn't have the answers?