My sense of grief regarding my recent break-up is much like my manic depression; unpredictable, rapid-cycling, and unhealthy. I haven’t done any drugs (except the treats from the doctor) and I’ve not been drinking *much* more than usual, I haven’t started on an ill-advised, no-strings-attached situation with any friends. I have, however, booked myself in for a triangle tattoo, started applying for jobs in London, rekindled a friendship with the last person who broke my heart and booked myself onto a “Witch Camp” in Pendle with the hope of becoming an actual Pendle witch. ‘Take each day as it comes’, they said, and they were right. My behaviours aren’t entirely normal right now but they’re not entirely insane either; I have always had some level of oddness about me and of course it’s going to come out more in a time of extreme stress.
In this time, I’ve had a lot of friends distracting me to the point where I’ve convinced myself I’m TOTALLY FINE AND OVER IT and decided I should JOLLY WELL MOVE ON. But of course, then the evening comes in, and I’m remembering the good times, and the idea of “moving on” seems quite distant. I don’t feel like it would be being unfaithful to the ex because he’s been so dickish during this that I can’t see myself somehow in the future being all: “Hello handsome, kind potential lover. Please do not put your genitals near mine because a long time ago a man was mean to me and I feel some kind of obligation to remain celibate in his honour”, it’s just the idea of anything in the future that evolves into a deep love doesn’t seem unfaithful, it just seems impossible. It’s something that happens to people once, and it’s happened to me twice in my life now. The last time of course, was the biggest time. Whatever. You are all assuring me that this is quite normal and that I actually WILL meet the love of my life, and the last time was just a practice run. Doesn’t feel like that right now, but that’s normal, isn’t it? The thing I need to do right now is learn to stop loving him. There’s no formula, so for now, it’s constant distractions. I have been asked on – at last count – FIVE WHOLE DATES WITH FIVE COMPLETELY DIFFERENT MEN – and it’s like okay I don’t even know what to do about that. It’s nice to be asked, I guess. There’s also a really surreal situation slightly unfolding to do with someone I know, but I can’t talk about that right now without breaking a confidence and I won’t do that. But it seems not everyone who is in love, is necessarily happy.
Everyone’s been brilliant during this. It turns out you’ve all had your hearts broken before, a lot of you in a similar circumstance. It’s a wholly demoralising and humiliating experience, and it’s made me quite frantic in places. It made me not recognise myself too, which makes sense because when I was deeply in the throes of ‘True Love’, I didn’t recognise myself then, either. Have been having ridiculous epiphanies that are completely unhealthy too, the most common of which is “He left me because I’m too exhausting and not a nice person. Maybe I should just also be with someone who is a lot like me in that respect because we’d fight a lot but at least we’ve both got someone to love”. See? Totally screwed up logic.
In the spirit of Keeping Myself ‘Happy’, I’ve planned a lot of things and aforementioned old friend is sort of facilitating that in some ways. Mainly because he’s thinking “what an excellent opportunity”, or maybe he’s just thinking “someone I care about is sad about something”. I don’t care really, I am enjoying the distractions. Picking up a friendship with someone you’ve fought bitterly with in the past is actually quite humbling. You can sit and reflect on your own ridiculousness when a new ridiculousness has just occurred. It becomes apparent the only reason we’d been arguing whenever we spoke before was because there was a tension placed by a situation that made the friendship dysfunctional. The thing I can thank the situation for is that I regained an old friend. Our friendship is now much better than before too, because there’s no underlying sense of who did what and why. I always thought he was a right prick but that’s because I used to think I knew what it felt like to be in an adult relationship. I didn’t. I’ve learnt a lot from this whole mess and the main thing I’ve learnt is that i need to change some things about myself if I ever want to be happy in a relationship again. It’s made me want to be a better person for the next time I fall in love, if that should ever happen again. But yes, in light of me seeing my flaws and behaviours afresh, suddenly the friendship can work, because there’s no imbalance. There’s no huge sense of injustice. I suddenly feel like an adult who can actually say, “Yes. We are not children. Life is complicated but thank-you for propping me up recently.” and that’s liberating. So yes. That means I can go to London quite soon and kip in a spare room for a week or something whilst I sort my head out. Manchester is too full of my former relationship at the moment, my bedroom is a place I do not want to be right now because I don’t want the uncontrollable crying to come back. I’ve also had a nice meal out today and had some of the best Indian food I’ve ever eaten, then there was a tub of Ben and Jerry’s with salted caramel, then a nice nightie because I can’t just go to people’s houses and sleep naked there can I. Not unless I want them to see me naked and I DON’T.
Sorry for the lengthy blog post, I think I’m only just starting to work things out in my head now. I’ll leave you with a poem by Zachary Schomburg, one of my absolute favourites. I’ve been reading it a lot in this break-up and it sums up how I feel, how I still feel. It’s called The Abandoned Hotel.
Inside the woods is an abandoned hotel.
Trees grow in the lobby
and up through the rooms.
Limbs jut out through the windows.
It looks like outside
I climb the trees
through 1000 rooms.
I look for you
in each of them.
You’re a long shiny line.