My friend Aaron and I came up with “afterthemath,” because it’s our shorthand for emotions over logic. My afterthemath is hurting. I think I broke it. I have to put it in a cast and eat ice cream and listen to breakup songs until my world turns right side up.

She could take me to heights I’d never seen, and when the mountains became valleys, I started to feel small. That’s because when we met I exploded with joy all over the place. Finally, a place to put *my* secrets. Even though I post most of them on my web site, there are still skeletons, like the extent of my damage from the PTSD I’ve suffered over time. The extent is very, very scary, and I wish I was making it up so that it wasn’t so terrible. Whatever you’re thinking, it was worse. My mind and body lived on anxious high alert every day, all day, and when she started kissing my broken places, the anxiety felt like a combination of pain and freebasing crack.

She helped me decide things that helped me to feel like my choices that day were to stay normal that day or freebase crack, that’s how jacked up I was on adrenaline. When you are old and married ™, there’s not a lot of excitement that goes with it. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that married relationships aren’t strong. I am saying that they are not anything close to the explosive dopamine of “new relationship.” I wish I could tell you what caused this explosion, because it wasn’t sexual. She’s straight, I’m gay, and never the twain shall meet.

Sufficed to say, she put a story in me that will never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, go away. And I considered typing ever a hundred more times.

And then I couldn’t *choose* between freebasing crack or not.

I ended the relationship because I needed emotional rehab immediately. I don’t want her to think I don’t love her. In some ways, I love her more than myself because emotionally freebasing crack causes my heart to beat outside itself.

I just know that I have to take care of myself, first, rather than her, because she’s got a support system in place that rivals The Kremlin. All I can do is offer up my brokenness to God, and say that I’m sorry I ever thought I could emotionally freebase crack in the first place. Her secrets are so large that I could fit inside them. Easily. With room. Blankets and teddy bears and Twizzlers all over the place, understand? She’s built a huge house in my heart and mind… but I had to look at the chord differently when I realized that I was living in it instead of attending to my own needs. I fought like hell to get out of a relationship that encouraged me to give up myself, and the timing wasn’t right for me to be in another one. I know this all sounds terribly romantic, but it’s not. I just can’t express the depth of emotion involved unless I go there. I don’t have enough words for this relationship, and I constantly pay for using the wrong ones, because a lesbian can’t be close to another woman unless there’s sex involved, or at least that’s been the line in the lesbian community since Moses gave me his beeper number.

I felt so much that I stopped taking care of myself. I won’t stop the resurrection if this problem is resolved, but it is too big a problem to sit in my head all day, every day, until I’m dead.

There is no wish in me greater than to tell you that this is all a joke, that I’m overreacting, etc. Maybe I am. Maybe I’m cutting off a relationship before its time… and at the same time, this is not a problem that can be fixed in an hour a week. There’s going to have to be some major apologizing all around, and first, I at least need to spend my 40 days and nights wandering the desert to understand myself a little better. I am no use to anyone if I’m trying to carry secrets in an empty basket.

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