It's that time of the year when Linkdin tells everyone I've been at my job for X amount of years, and people I sorta/kinda know feel compelled to keep the lines of networking open and shoot me a "congratulations." Linkdin is a mixed bag of people. It's mostly surface acquaintances that put out a thread of "keep in touch" for a "just in case" moment when my knowledge or connections may benefit them...and vice versa.
While I've been careful to keep my FB free of random dates or hookups, I've been lenient on Linkdin. To be frank, with the exception of a handful of blue collar types (which have typically been my best connections for various reasons) most of the men who have spent some time with me on a social level have been successful as far as NY standards go. Business cards were exchanged, and before I knew it I was getting requests to keep in touch via professional networking, even when I didn't bother to keep in touch via text.
When this time of the year rolls around, I inevitably get the "congratulations" messaged, and the "hope you're well", and even the "let's get lunch sometime". Lunch is considered safe and polite, when it comes to old hook-ups.
And no chance of sliding backwards for a re-run of old times.
I ignore those invites. Unless I'm looking to hook-up again, there is no reason to meet up with someone from the past that I haven't stayed friendly with. If we weren't cool enough to stay in touch for real, why does a work anniversary warrant an occasion to catch up?
That's a lot of words to set up my latest message. I almost forgot this person and I were connected. Besides the congratulations on the work milestone, I also was sent the url to the above video, and a one-liner about "I'm happy that you're happy; only wish that you had been that happy with me."
Without going into detail about the Who What When Where Why of this man, let me just say that I tried. I wasn't dead set on ending up with him, but we had fun together, and the on and off went on for a little bit of time. As things became clear that we were not going to stay together romantically, I opted to try to stay friends. I thought he was a smart, funny, intriguing individual that I would have loved to keep in contact with. However, when it was clear that the Booty Factory was closed, my texts were ignored when I suggested staying friends.
That's cool. I moved on and the world kept turning. But, as I'm reading his short little message with this very intimate song, I wanted to let my fingers start flying over my keyboard. You're "jealous of the rain?" You "wish me the best of all this world could give?" Really? It didn't seem that way. All those times I answered a text after months of silence, all those late night calls I took anyway when we both knew I should have declined, and each time I showed up for a last minute drink or dinner invite; where was all of his "best" then?
Was he wishing me happiness as he used my kindness to vent about work or life? Did he wish me the best as he used my body for his own satisfaction? So now, maybe he see's a picture or two thrown up somewhere, and he assumes it's okay to tell me he's giving his blessing on my happiness, but only wishes he had that with me in the past?
It's simple. If he wanted it in the past, then he would have been happy back then. Not now. Not because he's FOMOing over me at this point in time. Does he miss me? Miss my off-color humor? My always-touching hands? My willingness to accommodate even the most inconvenient requests? Let's say he's a gentleman and he really does miss my personality.
I remember this other man told me he kept coming back to me because I "amused" him. I kept him entertained. While I was railing at him for ghosting, I was able to make him laugh. Geez. Thanks, Mister. That sure does make me feel swell.
Was it surprising when the day came that they realized their texts wouldn't be returned or their calls wouldn't be picked up? What could I possibly be doing? Who would I replace them with? Afterall, didn't the sun rise and set upon their arrival and departure from my life?
Why do people go backwards and throw in an "I miss you"? If you miss me so much now, ask yourself why you didn't appreciate me when you had me. If I'm so great now, I assure you that I was just as great back then when you had me in your arms. When my full attention, affection, and devotion was solely on you; I was still the same person I am right now; the girl you're missing.
If I wasn't good enough to hold on to back then, I sure as hell won't make the cut now.
I don't know what I bring to the table as a partner. I always had my brains and my sexuality to keep me apart from the masses. At my age, at this point in my life, what do I have to offer someone? Why would anyone want to be around me 24/7 for the rest of their lives?
I spent the better part of last year pining after a man who treated me like a side piece. Of course he was divorced (in case you're coming to the party late), but it didn't change the fact that he hid me away from his ex-wife and kids like I was some dirty whore he picked up on the avenue. The more I look back at the 4 years I spent being head-over-heels in love with that person; the more I cringe at my behavior.
With some distance from the thick of it and with clearer eyes, I see a pathetic, desperate, lonely girl trying desperately to hold onto a man who made it cringe-worthingly, painfully, obviously clear that he only wanted a warm hole to keep his dick happy. A real-life fleshlight. A living sex doll. Not a partner; just an object he could pull off the shelf and dust off at his leisure whenever the mood struck him. All the deeper things that make a relationship tick like; respect, emotions, value, and consideration. All those things were kept in a different room, reserved only for his meaningful connections like his wife and kids and family and co-workers. I didn't really have a place in his life; just a function. As time wore on and my shine faded; I was replaced. The same way you would replace the batteries of a dim flashlight. Out with the old; and in go a fresh pair.
It hurt a lot when I came to terms with that. My pride hurt. My ego was beaten up. My brain refused to accept it. My heart had been broken long before, so at that point my chest cavity was numb. In my head, I just kept telling myself- "That can't be."
Oh, but it was.
Forgive me if I feel contempt towards a past connection trying to Bogart MY methods to get my attention. The man who sent me this video; he's never done anything like that before. And I never sent him any, either. This is something he saw me do on social media and decided to mimic. I'm not amused. In fact, I was so angry I deleted him from my network.
Some would say you're not over someone unless you can think about them with nothing but apathy. I disagree. You can get to the point when you realize that some people don't deserve a polite spot on your shelf anymore, and you can toss them out with the rest of the trash that doesn't belong in your space.
Early on in our talks, C admitted to keeping touch with a psycho who broke into his home twice. I don't mean keeping a copy of a key and letting herself in. I'm talking about crawling through unlocked windows, eating the porridge, and taking a mother fucking nap on his bed. He said they were still friends and she would text and message him still.
My eyebrows shot up through the fucking ceiling. WHY?! Why would a psycho still have the right to keep in touch after violating your space and threatening your safety? That didn't make sense. It's like me giving my ex-husband a key to my apartment and telling him to feel free to stop by anytime, and all that silliness of our past (you know- him beating the shit out of me) was all forgotten and it's all cool now.
Someone who allows danger into their lives does not have a place in mine. A man keeping ties to assholes is not someone I want in my life. I don't want assholes in my life. I have dated a lot of assholes. I don't want them in my life any longer. They are not welcome.
Just as I silently decided that if C didn't know how to cut ties to the damaged goods he dated one after the other; I would not stay with him- I, too, had to do my own culling. The same way it puzzled me on why he aimed to try to keep a friendship with the wife that shit all over him; it wasn't cool for me to keep even threadbare friendships with people who did me wrong, too.
If I couldn't see him with respect and attraction as I imagined him supplicating himself to these garbage women, how could I look at myself with respect or attraction by doing the same with garbage men?
Like I threw down the declaration that our road would not go any further together until he cleaned up his baggage, I was tasked to do the same with mine. You can't throw a fit at someone tracking shit onto your clean carpet if your shoes are covered in mud, as well. C tells me that he knows his past is clear because he doesn't think much about it at all, and the actual events are hazy because they are fading into nothing.
I call bullshit on that. I don't want to forget. Do you know what happened when you forget about the people who hurt you, and how they hurt you, and how badly it felt, and how much it affected you? It happens again; sometimes with the same people. I've done this. I've forgiven old friends who did me wrong because time passes, we had gotten older and mature, and why hold grudges over past mistakes, right? Wait a little while and 98% of those people come back around to do you dirty all over again. It's happened to me more than I'd care to admit. It doesn't keep me up at night, and I don't shed tears over betrayal or lost friendships or love. It makes me angry.
I'm angry at myself for allowing it to happen to me. I'm upset I was stupid enough to open the door to demons and inviting them to have a seat in my very peaceful space. I felt foolish for being fooled. So, I keep my lesson fresh. I remember everything. Every tear I shed, every word broken, every foul touch- it's all there under the surface to remind me not to repeat the same mistakes again.
I get that everyone has to heal in their own way, but healing a wound and not fortifying it against infection or future wounds is stupid. To blindly forget what someone did to you is stupid. I understand forgiving someone for your own sake and draining bitterness and hatred away. It is needed to live a happy life. You can't invite a fresh start when your space is still stained with the anger of the pain from the past. Forgive in order to free yourself; not them. Never them. I can forgive almost anyone in my past for their shortcomings, and for hurting me. But, I'll be damned if I forget. I won't. I can't.
Yeah, so thank you very much Mr. Way Back for sending through a pretty song. It's actually really beautiful and would probably move me to tears had it come from someone who actually shared love with me. When did we love each other? We had fun. We seemed to get along okay. But we never really got past the first level Boss did we? And when I tried to move things to a peaceful friendship, you weren't having it because the supply to the orgasm factory was shut down.
Just like you're happy that I'm happy and you only wish I was happy like that with you? I like that song a lot. If only it came from someone worth remembering.