In Love with a Stranger? Is This Possible?

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I started working out at a particular gym in my neighborhood to get off some pesky pounds. The gym has several sections to work out at, one of them being the “Weight Room,” which I avoided at all costs due to the large number of men. After about four months, I realized that although I lost some weight, I needed some help, so I hired a personal trainer.

On the first day, my trainer, Cassie, met me in the “Weight Room.” I was nervous because I did not feel “thin” enough or in great shape to be there, but after awhile I realized that nobody paid any attention to me (or so I thought), so I adjusted quite well and after several sessions I could walk in there and workout with confidence.

One day, my trainer commented on this one guy who was amazingly good looking. At first, I thought, yeah he is gorgeous, but way too young for me, so I just agreed with her and moved on. Well, after a couple of weeks, I busted him staring at me. It was like he was trying to get my attention. Of course, I was flattered but I was in the middle of a separation with my current husband. My husband and I had been separated for almost a year and he recently moved back in to the house due to financial problems. My husband and I agreed we were both still separated and our marriage was over and this living arrangement was temporary, but out of respect for each other, we agreed not to see or date other people. So when this guy looked at me, I just turned away. 

This “silent flirting” continued for about three months. I would catch him looking at me, or he would come right behind me when I was in between workouts at the water fountain, or he would work out very close to my trainer and me. I could hear his conversations with his guy friends and he could hear my conversations with my trainer. It was like we were getting to know each other through these dialogues with other people. Oddly, he never said a word to me and I did not know his name—and still don’t. He would look at me or smile at me and I would ignore him. He probably thought I was a “B—H.” I guess I could have smiled back and then we could have been friends but my feelings were so intense, I honestly did not trust myself to be “just friends.” I wanted this guy and in a very bad way.

I got the sense that he was “scared” to talk to me because it seemed like he was being prodded by his friends to talk to me, but then when I would start imagining being with him, I would convince myself that he was too young, probably around his mid-twenties and I am almost forty. I know he did not have any children and I have three children, plus this whole separation-divorce crap was a big mess. I convinced myself that no matter how strong my feelings were, a relationship with him would never work, so maybe it was a good thing that he never spoke to me and a good thing that I ignored him.

I also convinced myself that I was just “imagining” his interest because one night I walked out of the gym and he was outside talking on the phone. I looked at him, he looked straight at me, then turned around and ignored me. I was a little hurt that he ignored me, so I thought, well if he really liked me, then he would have ended his call, and talked to me—right?

Then everything changed one evening. I was at the gym and he was there with his workout buddies. I noticed he kept walking by me but again he never said a word. At one point in the evening, I saw both him and his friend standing in the corner staring at me, but I just ignored him and tried to focus on my workout. Something felt different about his behavior this evening but I could not put my finger on it. It was like he was testing my reaction to him and his friend was watching me also. The good news is that my soon-to-be ex-husband had just found another apartment but would not be out for another two weeks. So I told myself that once my ex was out, I would smile at him or just simply make my move then. So I needed to be patient. Then I finished my workout and he saw me leaving but he never followed me or said a word to me. That was the last time I saw him.

That was over two months ago from today. Every time I go in the weight room, I look for him but I don’t see him. I have seen his friends there but not him. When I think back to the last night I saw him, I wonder what he was thinking because he was acting so different that evening. Maybe he knew he was going away or not going to be around for some time, but when I think about it, I get really upset because I miss him. I think about him and I wonder if I strangely fell in love with him, if that is possible. 

I also remind myself that I did the right thing because I made a commitment to my ex, and I did not want to disrespect the agreement we had made. My ex has moved out and is settled in his new life. I am by myself and I find it ironic that now that I can actually talk to the guy, he has vanished. Also, I am not one to chase a man and I firmly believe that if a man really likes a woman, come hell or high water, he will chase her, try to talk to her, or find her, no matter what. Maybe I am old fashioned in my thinking, but I wonder if he really even did care about me at all and maybe I did “imagine” the whole thing. There I go reasoning with myself again. 

So in the end, I feel rejected and alone and although I miss him terribly, and yes, I have cried and prayed that I will see him. I believe that if it is meant to be, he will cross my path again, so I wait patiently, but my door is open to other men in my life who will make the effort to get to know me.


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