[Disclaimer: this is a more personal post so…hush with your nonsense :)]
A few days ago, a sudden resolve dawned on me. Something in me awoke, stood at attention and declared I’m going to get over him. I cannot say where exactly this resolution came from, my best bet is that it has been slightly over a year since I left America, since I left him and in the last year I’ve discovered a lot about him, about myself and about the “us” we once were. I am not familiar with this territory, the “post” part that you don’t expect from a relationship you thought would lead to marriage, children and a life together. I don’t know the “supposed to” of what happens after the breakup. (Perhaps there aren’t any?)
I’ve heard a variety of advice and input: “It takes twice the amount of time you were together to get over him.” My god, I still have two more years to go? “You won’t fully move on until you move onto someone else.” Well then where is this someone else? “You’ll never really get over him” I’m screwed. “You’ll get over him” I don’t know that. “It’s his loss, he’s an idiot.” What does that make me? The list goes on.
A few days ago, something in me said I didn’t want to waste spend another year like this. I don’t want to give him anymore time of my life aching for a love that is gone and hoping for a future that will never be. I felt ready. I was proud of myself and perhaps as a way of keeping myself accountable I subtly and bravely told a few friends about my new decision. This year, I’m getting over him. Immediately after this, I felt oddly accomplished (odd because I hadn’t actually done anything) and my newfound lightness was followed by “am I going to meet someone now?” The last time I had resolved to embrace being single, it took less than a month before I had found myself in open loving arms, with him. Will there be a repeat? I decided to keep my options open, no expectations.
What I did not expect was to hear about his new girlfriend. It was only a split second that I had allowed myself to think that maybe life would bring the “right guy” my way now but it had never occurred to me that he was ready and already moving onto another woman and into another relationship. This discovery (made on facebook no less) came as a surprise. I had heard about a girl he’d been seeing, but to my knowledge it had been a casual thing, nothing official. Not then anyways. There in front of me, on my computer screen was the stupid heart facebook adds to a new relationship status followed by the notification that he was “in a relationship”. I think my first thought was “oh”. I didn’t know what I felt, and in the seconds that followed I became aware of this weight in my heart that I couldn’t place. I had to pause and ask myself, how do you feel?
Happy? No. that wasn’t it. Sad? I didn’t think so. Hurt? Perhaps a tad, but why?! Confused? Yes. Confused. For some reason unknown to me, I felt a welling in my eyes and I allowed the few tears born of my stunned confusion to slide down my face. Why was I crying? The tears stopped as suddenly as they had begun. What now? I sat staring at his name and my friend (who was around at the time I found out) in her infinite wisdom told me that I was officially banned from facebook for a while as staring at his profile (or stalking “her”) would benefit me none. I obeyed. She advised I go to bed, but I knew that a pillow beneath my head would not provide comforting thoughts and even if I willed tears to come, there would be none. So, no more tears then.
I sat and wondered, why was I so upset? I didn’t want to date him again, that I was certain of. It’s true I still love him,(deeply so) but I’m no longer “in” love with him. What does that even mean? His commitment to a woman unknown to me confirmed two things: 1) he was completely, undeniable, irreversibly over me and 2) I’d never hear from him again. The first confirmation wasn’t a surprise or a shock; for the past year I’ve known how silly it has been to hope that maybe there was a part of him that still missed me, that still thought of me that still ached for me the way that I still missed, thought and ached for him. It was the second truth that gave meaning to the weight in my chest. I’ll never hear from him.
The last 9 months of my year without him has been quiet on his end. Dead quiet. He, without telling me, decided that he couldn’t have contact with me. I accepted this as his way of moving on and I dealt with it the best I could. It’s better for him. In moments of weaknesses I’d send him a line or two hoping for a reply I already knew would never come, they never did. I hated how he was still the one I wanted to turn to when I was sad, and it hurt me to realize that he was the first one I wanted to share good news with too. Neither of which I could do. It’ll just take time.
It’s been a year, and instead of him getting to a place where he want to have contact with me again, he’s found someone new and I fall into a category in his past where I am destined to stay. Being with him, I never, not once, had any reason to doubt his commitment to me. I had no grounds for jealous feelings and any insecurity I might have had about his relationships before me were laughable. Being the object of his attention and affection I knew that out of respect for me his ex-girlfriends would have a huge red “x” (or “ex”, har har) stamped over them and he would be dedicated wholly to me. Now, in light of his newfound interest, my name, our past and his memories of me all get boxed and placed on a shelf in his mind where settled dust never rises.
It hurts. Of the brief fantasies and silly fleeting notions in the last year, my biggest mistake was allowing myself to believe that we’d get to a point where we were okay. I am no fool to believe that the relationship we had had would leave room for us to be best friends. I didn’t expect that. I hoped that in due time, maybe we’d write each other a line here and there to say “this reminded me of you” or “thought you’d appreciate that”. All I want is for contact to be an option. So long as that option doesn’t exist in his mind, I am bound to unspoken rules that say I have no place in his life. One day. But now, that day will never come.
It’s past 3 in the morning and I’ve allowed myself to give in, to sift through emotions trying to make rope out of wisps of thread. Do I have anything to hold onto? I think about happy memories, towards the end he was always so insistent that I remember the good times. I remember them. My fingers haven’t forgotten the touch of his skin, I still know the pitch of his laugh and even without the aid of photos the colors in his eyes are distinct in my mind. His voice however, is fading in my head and I fear that should I ever hear it again, it’ll take a while for me to place the sound that had been a part of my daily life for close to two years. I miss him. I miss him. I miss him. I remember the good times, do you?
A part of me laughs and is relieved that I made my resolve to get over him before finding out about how he’s more than gotten over me. It’s like quitting your job then finding out you were about to get fired anyways. Still leaves me jobless. It makes a difference. Right? After all this, there remains one question looming over my head. So what now? Now? Now I choose to be happy for him. With her, he might hear answers to questions I had no reply to. With her, he might discover a happiness that for whatever reason was denied to us. With her, he might find what he has been looking for. Who am I to want anything else for him? I am a woman that once mattered to him, I am a woman who hurt him, I am the very same woman who helped give way to the man in him and I am a woman of his past. Above all, I am a woman who will continue to love him. I heard somewhere that if you ever say you love a person and then at any point afterwards you say you don’t love them anymore, you never really did. That’s not the way I love. If thirty years from now I won’t be able to think about him and still feel love then these will be some 1600 worthless words. Until then, I’ll grow into the woman he helped me to be, my heart will grow and I will still hope that one day he might give me a call and we will find a way to keep loving each other in a way that is different and better.