We Share the Sadness

I always wonder when to write about someone. When to introduce them on the semi – public part of my life. I’m weird about it. Just like I’m weird about becoming friends with them on social media or keeping their phone numbers in my phone, stored away as permanent. It takes awhile. Especially if I’m really interested in someone.

It’s a control thing, ya know? A safety mechanism. Maybe if they aren’t intertwined it won’t hurt as much if they leave. I always think back to that night deleting everything that ever existed between the Jock and me. If I could just erase him, maybe I would wake the next morning and realize the last 5 months had been a bad dream. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind style.

So I’m hesitant. And maybe rightly so in some ways. I’ve been written about, as a girlfriend and ex-girlfriend, and it’s curious and terrifying to read how they process the end of everything. So I’m cautious and maybe calculated.

It’s usually when I think they will stick around and be a permanent part of my life. When I think it’s safe and I won’t look like a fool if I get rejected. When I hope it’s something worth shouting from the rooftops and letting everyone celebrate with me. And yet, this time, I wrote quickly. I shared soon. I opened up in a time when things were uncertain and unknown and unsafe. Because this Mystery Man can no longer be called mine.

There’s something to be said for the timing in our lives. For the patience and steadiness and waiting. Something I maybe didn’t pay as much attention to as I should have.

And while it hurts to process this loss of sorts in a public way, I have learned so much from Mystery Man. He’s known since the beginning about this place I’ve carved out for myself and has said my words and my thoughts and my feelings are mine to give, regardless of other people’s opinions, and that’s partly what makes them precious. He’s given me permission to say the things. And maybe that’s why I said them so soon. Because I could.

and it stings when it’s nobody’s fault
’cause there’s nothing to blame at the drop of your name

There was a moment, not too many weeks ago, when the air crackled between us. There was palpable tension as we just looked at each other. Almost curious in a sense. Wondering if we had been kidding ourselves this whole time. Afraid to admit it but wanting it more than anything. I ignored the voice in my head. The one that sounds suspiciously like my counselor’s. Because that tension. That crackle. That draw. That feeling of home. And safe. And waking from a deep dark slumber.

I still wish you’d fought me ’til your dying day
don’t let me get away

But the space crept in. The distance. The complicated. The days and nights. The tears and the wounds still tender to touch. They couldn’t be reconciled. They couldn’t be erased or forgotten or ignored. As we both hung on by the skin of our teeth, we watched it fade. Wandering into the wilderness of each other’s heart. Both wanting more but not being at the place to give it.

we share the sadness, split screen sadness

So we find the sadness. Together but apart. Drawing close but pushing away. Walking fine lines around the boundaries of his heart and mine. Trying to find the balance, sometimes getting it right and sometimes getting it wrong.

Which leaves me in a place of hitting my capacity. It was like this last year too, around this time. I found myself looking in the mirror wondering who the girl was looking back. The striving and the wondering and the fighting for more. The last few weeks have been a whirlwind to say the least — emotionally, physically, spiritually, and mentally. I was in the emergency room, only to leave the country a week later, only to get stranded in a foreign city because of snowstorms, only to come back to the ending. My heart has been trying to find which way is up. Which it tends to do to the point of weariness.

I had been feeling the stretching and breaking and pulling when I jumped on the plane to Mexico. I knew it was there, lingering like an unwelcome guest. I hoped the sun and sand and salt water would ease and mend.

And while it did in some ways, I know time and rest is the best cure for the weary. So I’m taking some time. Time to detox and re-focus. 21 days of no booze, boys, or bumming. To quiet my heart with some good old fashioned time on the treadmill and swimming in a pool. A chance to make space and room, clear the clutter, and find my way back gently.

I can’t wait to figure out what’s wrong with me
so I can say this is the way I used to be

For now, I’m hopeful these few weeks will be good. To choose to be quiet and alone, instead of being forced in to it. I don’t often choose quiet and alone. I often choose loud and many. One to distract from another. Keep walking forward regardless of how slowly or quickly. But this time, I’d like to just stop. And let things settle a little bit before I keep moving on. Because there are wonderful things ahead. And I see them. And I hope for them. And I believe they are there. Nothing wrong with taking a little time to make room for them with anticipation of what’s to come.


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