This morning I woke up to a cup of French Roast from my favorite coffee place, and sat on the couch and did nothing. I didn’t write, I didn’t read, I didn’t surf, I didn’t do anything. I just let my mind wander while I stared off into space for three hours. There are several things that those three hours gave me:
In the moment, making the decision to start a friendship I *knew* was going to undo me ahead of time was as big a split-second decision as I’ve ever made in my life. It felt somehow familiar, as if I’d been in that relationship before. It started out as the healthiest relationship I’ve ever had, and as time wore on, I just became so me that it wasn’t healthy any longer. I offer nothing that she did wrong, because it isn’t there. I’m the one that feels broken, not healthy enough for her, and I want to be. You just cannot imagine what a large statement *that* is.
The balance was off, way off, and I didn’t notice it for a long time. I will come clean about the fact that I have never met her, have no idea what she really does for a living, and am fairly certain that in person, I’d probably want to hit that. It doesn’t matter. I’m again, old and married. Plenty of people get my eyes, but never my heart if I can help it. I have to manage my boundaries with an iron fist now, because not knowing I had to was RUINING EVERYTHING and I couldn’t figure out WHY. You cannot imagine how quickly I lost control in this relationship and would have given her everything. She didn’t do anything to further this, it was just my internal freakout mode of OH MY GOD YOU’RE MY NEW BEST FRIEND CALL ME EVERY DAY. I couldn’t keep up with her. I couldn’t stay unbroken enough to manage my own expectations and boundaries, and I felt like I was failing because she has an arm, but there were getting to be fewer and fewer situations where I could catch the ball. That part I can safely step away from, because I didn’t like the feeling like I’d been dropped in the middle of Baghdad without any money, and the line from Indiana Jones ran through my head… “Marcus? Marcus would get lost in his own museum.”
Lost in my own museum just about covers the last year nicely.
I can hear you all reacting from THERE. What ABOUT Dana? This relationship lived in my head the entire time it was going on, and I didn’t have a clue until Dana started feeling like “second best friend.” If that wasn’t bad enough, my actual best friend started feeling like second best friend, and I noticed…. but it wasn’t until I started feeling like my own second best friend that I did something about it.
I am certain that I absolutely blindsided her. I mean, pushed her to the wall emotionally. It was not intentional, but that’s how breakups go. One person knows before the other. I knew it was time when I felt like I’d done something wrong, I got picked on for it needlessly, and I picked up my toys and went home.
It was a small thing that broke the camel’s back. The thing about abused children, and I am a work of art, are very adept at manipulation…. and I am a writer… and I am an asshole. We were emotionally doing lines on each other. It was all in the interest of healing, never anything negative, but the intense chord that ran between us started to hurt in a familiar way and I ran hard to get away from it.
The hardest part and the victory is that for once, I broke my own heart. I didn’t know I could do that. Just reach in and snap it in half. It sounds like a cold and calculating thing to do, and in some ways, I’m sure it is. However, she’s a fan. She’ll be able to see my heart as clearly as you can, and I hope that she finds the love for her there when she needs it the most…. and that by the time she does need it, my love is healthy enough to kiss her broken places, too.