About 25 years ago, I was dating this girl. We dated for about a year and a half and I asked her to marry me. She said yes. We were both still in college at the time. It was over Christmas break. She was graduating in May. I had one more year to go. (I was pursuing a double major and was going to take an extra year.) Over the summer we picked a date, told our parents and started to make plans.
By the end of the summer she had gotten a job and I was heading back to school. A couple of months into the semester and stress was starting to show. I did not see it at the time, but in hindsight, the signs were there. At the end of October she went to a costume party at the home of someone she worked with. Many of her work friends would be there too. She did not invite me, but I could not have gone anyway. I did not have a car on campus so I was stuck there.
The next day she we were talking on the phone and she sounded different. I asked her about it and she told me at the party, she had hooked up with another guy. She said they just kissed, but I never really believed that. She broke up with me there on the phone.
I was devastated. Totally did not see that coming. I simply could not imagine that was happening to me. I tried (and failed) to save the relationship. She agreed we could remain friends and that made me feel better. I did not realize at the time that was just something people say. Most people don't really mean it.
It was hard to keep in contact with her but her job was a manager of a large store in my town. I would see her in there sometimes and we would chat. Sometime she would tell me she was busy and shoo me away.
The last time I saw her she was not happy to see me at all. She yelled at me in the store. She told me to leave and she didn't want to see me anymore. She was very angry.
I shouted something back at her and stormed out of the store. I was furious, but something clicked in my brain. I knew I was never going to see her again. I no longer wanted to see her. Any happy thoughts I had about her were gone. And to this day, I do not think about her with any sort of fondness (if I think about her at all). I am no longer angry but there is a complete indifference to her memory. I really do not care what happened to her after the moment I walked out of that store and I still feel that way.
The reason I am telling this story is not about her, or about how I feel about her. This was a true story and she is NOT a metaphor for T, the Chef or anyone else.
The reason for the story is the click in my brain. The epiphany I had that cleared my mind.
That happened to me again yesterday.
I have been talking to T a lot over the past couple of week. I love him desperately and I always will. (As if you didn't already know.) I want to be with him and at this moment I do not care about the other difficulties or frustrations we had. I feel so perfectly happy and safe and loved when I am in his arms and I miss that feeling with all my heart.
When we talk, he talks to me like a close friend. Like a family member. I know he loves me. He wants me to live my dreams and be happy. After the pain I put him through when we broke up, I am glad he is still talking to me. I am grateful he still cares about me and is willing to maintain a close friendship. I know he means that in his heart and its not just something he said.
Lately when I have been talking to him I would occasionally stray into talk about us being together again. About putting things back the way they were. Of course, this is not possible for many reasons. It has been eleven months since the break up and he does not want to get back together with me. He has healed the wound I caused and he has no interest in reopening it. Even if he did, he would forever be wondering when I would become frustrated and dump him again. So when I stray into that kind of talk, he would gently say, "Jim, you are doing it again."
But like a stale gag on a "Simpsons" episode I did not immediately take the hint. It would put me off for a couple of hours, maybe a day, but then I would be right back at him. He would say something nice and I would use it as an opportunity to get back into the crazy talk.
Last night was the last time. "Jim, you're doing it again."
I knew what he meant. At that moment any hope I had of T and I ever getting back together, evaporated. He would never be my boyfriend, or my partner. No matter how much I wanted it. It was never going to happen.
He was not like that girl from so many years ago. He was not mean or angry about it. He was not abrupt. He was gentle and loving because he knew I was hurting. He knew that I was having a heart ache like I had not felt before, but he also knew he was right.
Deep down..... so did I.
I don't know what exactly I am going to do next. I think I need to take some time to find myself. I have been too long with my head up my ass and I need to get it out. I need to figure out what I want for me and then figure out how to get it.
I suppose that is the direction the blog will take for a while. Anyone who wants to come along for the ride is welcome.
In other news, the Chef has apologized for the shit he said and wants to meet for coffee tomorrow.
That's a story for another day.