I woke up in Brooklyn knowing that this was going to be a tough one. The alarm went off, and I pretended not to hear, wondering if I could feign sleep and continue dreaming. The flight to Salt Lake had taken off two hours earlier – it was all happening, whether I liked it or not. Twenty minutes later, I was headed to the West Village to undergo open heart surgery.
My family arrived two hours later, uncertain of what was going to open the door. But here I was, packing, not a tear. And while not skipping, you never would have known that anything was wrong. You wouldn’t have guessed that I was going from room to room removing my memories from all surfaces.
I was in packing mode and when advised to pack the ice cube trays, I mechanically took them out of the freezer. Then I burst out laughing. I heard Tom Arnold’s voice in True Lies lament to Arnold Swarzenegger that his wife moved out…”She took the ice cube trays out of the freezer. What kind of a sick b*tch takes the ICE CUBE TRAYS out of the freezer?” Needless to say I put them back. And laughed all day about it.
We went to the new apartment, where we met the landlord, who decided hey, let’s give this nice girl two weeks of free rent. Um, yes please. Then, for four hours, my sister, good friend, and mother scoured my home until we could see our faces in the stainless steel sink.
The next destination required some beers – continuing the packing in my old home. Maybe it was the shock, fatigue, or sadness – but i didn’t shed one tear. For four hours, my mother and I sat and packed, wrapped up the glass, listened to iTunes, and made microwave popcorn for dinner. I cried only once, and for about 30 seconds when it was all done, and felt, more than anything, utter disappointment.
I think it’s natural to feel despair when the person we love decides to leave, but the truth is it’s not our loss. For they’ve left a person would advise them in their indecision, would cheer them on in their wins, would console them in their sadness… someone who wouldn’t give up on them.
The past week, I went through some of my old emails from my another ex-boyfriend from several years ago. I wanted to read the ones that were from the end of our relationship in summer 2007, to see my patterns, to see if I could learn anything. Although that relationship ended in a different fashion, one of his last emails gave me pause. Three years ago, a line was written to me: “I am sorry. You deserve(ed) a lot better than I ever gave. You are too good.” The sentiment was identical to an email I received last week.
Evidently, I have not changed much in three years. Or learned anything at all. So I guess it’s time to sit up and pay attention. Maybe I deserve to receive for a change, instead of giving it all away.
For the person who is left, the hardest part about moving forward is not looking back. But t’s almost impossible not to see the cracks in everything. Having your heart broken is destined to harden us, and I suppose the most difficult part is not letting it.