This week a couple that I loved to observe broke up. It was hard on me 🙂 … partially because the endless sea of material for my snarky remarks I made to J about the romantic gesture deficit in our relationship dried up and because though throughly jaded I am a hopeless romantic (emphasis on hopeless). You can read more about this relationship here.
Full disclosure I experienced equal parts empathy and gawking like a 3D live theater performance of The Real World that I got paid to watch. Judge not my friend.
After the final hammer fell (I am acutely aware that the first 3 breakups don’t stick, and won’t be even remotely surprised if I show up to work tomorrow and their carrying on like Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks) I sent this message to my boyfriend:
It may be funny but it wasn’t a joke.
Why marriage? Why in a passive aggressive text on a Thursday morning?
Well, because it creeps up on me like a runners stitch. Just a dull pain until I start gaining speed and momentum. It doesn’t stop me but it rears its head and shows it teeth. I focus on my breath. Rationalize that it’s just my diaphragm trying its best to hold in my heart. The urge to pause and attend to it will subside. The last thing that I want is to be that guy in the gym drawing attention to myself. Looking needy. Acting presumptuous that I’m worthy of another’s life long commitment…. oh yeah this was supposed to be a metaphor. I push, finish the mile. Stretch. Assured that the next time that I hit my stride it’ll be back and there I’ll be squashing my instinct to fold over.
Is marriage instinctual? Biology says yes, on both sides of the gender line. Is it strategic for the modern age? Depends on who you ask. For the sake of love? No ring or vow could make me love him more. For pomp and circumstance? Well I’d hate for my kin folk and the church to know that I’ve been blowin in sin. For the security? Yes.
Are we supposed to say that? Probably not. In my case it’s not financial security, clearly I’m independently wealthy. It’s not physical security, I’ve got a dog for that. It’s not that I fear infidelity. It’s emotional security. The reassurance that someone has the balls enough to publicly decree that they are your partner and you agree. Is the desire to be married selfish? Yeah. To love is not for the sake of the beloved it is for the self.
Do I think that the sanctity of marriage is alive and well? No. Is it important to me that there’s a tactile event that celebrates and validates my love and relationship? Sure is.
All of that is to say that the proposition of marriage shouldn’t be a carrot to the horse. It needs to be a rational, responsible agreement ( so much for romance, huh). Mostly, you should be absolutely positively sure that this is your person.
The proverbial,”When/how did you know that such and such was the one” has always rung hallow with me. Primarily because I have never believed in there being a the one. I also don’t believe in the Holy Trinity or a magic bullet that killed Kennedy. I’m no fun, I know.
Until (in the first regard) this moment that I couldn’t explain then and can only begin to wrap my head around now. In the past nine months I’ve developed a new sensibility with the Devine. A new respect for the unspoken plan, interconnectedness, the oneness of the universe and the principles of manifesting your thoughts and energy into real tangible life-ness. I can’t explain it to you, or me for that mater. It is experiential.
In my new astute spiritual awakening I have a whole renewed sense of awe over the man that I have the privilege of sharing my existence with. A new compartment to file all of my past romantic hardships in, one that I can open and peruse through without all of my emotions spilling out. The buckets of tears, the dispaire, the anguish over lost love reveals its self anew. Just another lesson learned in time– girl.
Let me take a moment to throw some metaphorical salt over my shoulder and pound on the nearest wood. Mostly let me be clear with myself and the powers that be. I am happy.
Don’t take this from me. I am invested in flexing all of my cognitive muscles to keep S.S. Julius and Reagon afloat.
This is new. Not because I haven’t been madly in love before. Not because I haven’t felt like I was in too deep to turn around before but because I can say out loud and even more loudly in my soul that he is my destiny. That even despite curried tacos for dinner, piles of bills, opposing work shifts and all of the turbulence that is inevitable I will always admire him. Lust after him. Long for him to just hold me at the beginning, middle and end of every day.
This morning after my real boyfriend left for work I spent an hour with my old boyfriend. His words couldn’t be more honest. This poem says exactly what I’ve always known about J. (If you have a second to spare this is seriously one of the most beautiful poems that I have ever read)
“See, last night, I had a dream. And in this particular dream, I died in my dreams, woke not knowing I was still sleeping, decided to walk. You see that night, I walked in my sleep, I slept in my walk, I walked backwards until I saw you for the first time, and I could barely muster the courage to introduce myself all over again. You see, I’ve been trying to find the right words. I’ve been trying to take the right steps for what seems to me like thousands of years, but something always seems to go wrong between us.
We lived in Egypt, I was the Pharaoh’s slave, you were his daughter. Loving you led to my death, they claimed that I seduced you, and after they stole my life, I was resurrected as a mason. I made the foundation for your house. We met eyes for two seconds, you left, and I didn’t see you again until I died. I came back as a caterpillar. I turned into a butterfly, I landed in the palm of your hands, you brushed me away, and the rejection killed me. When I awoke, I was a kick drum, you were a snare, we were both owned by this drummer named Cozy Cole, and when he died, so did we.
But I came back just to look for you. I left notes in random places, hoping that you would stumble across them. I carved our names in trees, and then prayed that it would jog your memory. I whispered your name in the wind, hoping somehow, maybe some way, my voice would reach you, but it didn’t, and I died. I died early. I died young with breadcrumbs in my hand just hoping that you would find me, but you never did, so they buried me.
And when they buried me, they put these coins over my eyes, and I used them as bus fare to get back to Earth, just so I can look for you. That’s why sometimes, when we hold hands, ever so often, I tend to hold on a little too tight, and I’m sorry. I just don’t want to lose you again. “
I don’t want to let go.
Ohh yes I was going to offer relationship advice and not just gush about my jackpot of a man and blubber on about why he doesn’t want to marry my fine behind.
Here goes: You were wrong. I say this lovingly. In fact I referred to myself the other day as the breakup queen. A sash that I’m not too excited to wear, but I do. You see I too have been wrong, so very wrong. Here’s why I own it. Because it’s my story. My journey. I’ve tried to burry it, I’ve let it out to air but most profoundly I’ve made peace with it. You and the universe have a contract. A law of attraction if you will. Groblling, being angry and feeling slighted though easier, is a waste of your life.
I hate to interject about the coming environmental apocalypse (as I like to do just when someone thinks that things couldn’t be worse) at a time like this. But our time here is precious. Respect that. Be mindful of how you’re expending your energy. I’m definitely trying to.