A few months ago I blogged about the struggle of opening up and letting my guard down for the first time in a while. It was scary and exciting and I jumped in with two feet. I not only was open in telling this person how I felt about him, but I actually allowed myself to feel it! I wasn’t looking for it. It just happened. I wasn’t prepared for it and didn’t know where it would lead but I was tired of fighting the strong feelings I was having and just admitted it. Vulnerability is not something I am used to feeling. (It took me several months just to write this blog). I have worked so hard to not show vulnerability and by not admitting my true feelings even to myself kept me from feeling any more heartache than I had already experienced. It was a good system that I know was messed up, but it was working for me. To let that guard down meant I wasn’t afraid anymore to be hurt. So be it.
Naturally, the way my life goes, shortly after I made the decision to tear down the walls with this person, he decided he couldn’t see me anymore. It was quick and it was painful. I was blindsided because things were going so well. We were getting along perfectly, he had let me in to a personal part of his life, we seemed to be getting to that great place at the beginning of a relationship where it’s all exciting but we are comfortable with each other and all smiles all the time. That “new love” sort of feeling, that I was trying so hard not to feel. It didn’t make any sense to me why he would want to cut it off.
I know this sounds like a common tail where the girl is dumped by the guy and she doesn’t see all the red flags right in front of her face. But I am not the usual girl. I look for flags and immediately assume not to trust the person I am dating. I always can see why it would have never worked out with someone, at least in hindsight. My usual approach is “well, this will do for now, but it will never last”. I didn’t have any of those thoughts this time. I certainly saw challenges that may arise but I wasn’t afraid of them. I didn’t obsess over any flaws because there was too much good there that any flaw was welcomed. It would make him more human. And he certainly had enough good things to say about me. I have every compliment he ever gave me embedded in my head because they always came off as genuine and candid, rather than some line.
I was a mess for weeks. I wasn’t acting like myself. I have been through some tough things in my life and yet this knocked the wind out of me. Of course I never skip a Crossfit class so I still went that day. My coach could tell I was off and when he asked me what was going on I burst into tears! That doesn’t happen. That led to a few weeks of being asked every day if I was doing okay….love that. I picked a fight with the X that was so out of line. Even though I enjoy taking things out on him sometimes, I knew I had to apologize…and started crying AGAIN! I didn’t cry the day we got divorced, but I cried to him on the phone over a call I got from our daughter’s school. Poor guy…he had no idea what was happening and was worried someone else in my family was dying. I couldn’t talk to my friends about it without welling up…there are several restaurants I never want to walk into again. I opened the flood gates and there was no closing them!
Therapy wasn’t helping, talking to friends and family was no help – I even saw a psychic to know what was going to happen in the future. (Something I have been exploring lately, but that is an entirely different blog post). We were never exclusive so I was seeing other guys that I thought would be a good distraction, but it just made things worse. It made me sadder to be out on a fun date with someone else thinking I wanted to be out with him. I ended all communication with any guy that I was talking to at the time. I tried moving on and finding someone new but would just cancel the date hours before. I couldn’t get him out of my mind and I couldn’t reach out to him so I was just paralyzed. Sitting in this misery that I couldn’t shake. It bothered me so much that this was bothering me so much! We hadn’t known each other that long, why can’t I just get a grip!?!
The problem was he hadn’t done anything wrong. I had no reason to get angry with him or see that he wasn’t good enough for me. For the first time this guy actually was! Although his delivery sucked I knew why he was pushing me away. His life was messy and he was overwhelmed by it. He had mentioned this overwhelming feeling to me before but I hadn’t realized the severity of it. So instead of getting angry with him like I should have – or wish I could have – I was just worried about him. I so badly wanted to help him get to a better place, help him talk through things and be a support for him. He was so down on himself and I wish he could just see what I saw in him – an incredibly kind, funny, passionate, ambitious, intelligent person who is completely selfless and is a great dad. I knew he didn’t want me to help him so I just stayed away. I refused to believe that we weren’t going to see each other again but I had no idea when that would be and what it would mean.
We have talked via text a couple times since then. He apologized for pushing me away, asked if we could “catch up” sometime – still not sure what that means – but he isn’t ready for that at this time. Everything I know about him tells me that he is being honest and sincere. I would like to think that this is really what he’s feeling. But then everything in my experience with men and my lack of trust in people in general tells me it’s all bullshit. That he is just too nice of a guy to tell me he’s not into me and he thinks this is a gentle way of letting me down.
Let me just break for a minute for a quick PSA for all men –
We don't like your wishy washy excuses for not dating us anymore. Just say it! We will appreciate the time back that we would have wasted wondering what we did wrong and making thousands of excuses for why you aren't texting anymore. Thank you.
As I was saying…I don’t think he is the type to do such a thing, especially after all of the open communication we already had with each other, but I can’t help but have doubt. I even tried to embrace this theory to help me move on. I try to tell myself that I misread this whole thing and he just isn’t as into me as I am into him. No harm, no foul, but it’s time to move on. Yea…that didn’t work. And then I feel like an insensitive, selfish jerk because he is going through something real, and all I can think about is how it’s affecting me.
But regardless of my conflicting thoughts about it all, I am in the same position. I can’t be with him, no matter how much I want to be. So where do I go from here? I know I cannot continue to wallow in this misery of missing him, not opening up to anyone else, and hoping he will come back one day. He may never want to talk to me again. I have to face that reality.
I have been trying to move forward and have met someone new. I am surprised every time that I am not having a meltdown just before I see him because I am too sad about Mr. Wonderful. New Guy is adorable, super sweet, a lot of fun – it’s great. We have a perfect balance of making sure we both still want to be in this. And we have no emotional connection to each other, which makes it perfect. Walls are intact. Just the way I like it. I think about trying to focus on New Guy a little more and see if an emotional connection is possible, but then I crawl right back in my rabbit hole. I’m not ready…and I am pretty sure he isn’t either.
I think I am afraid to move on and put my effort and my heart into someone else because I will put that wall back up with Mr. Wonderful. Although it is a goal of mine to get out of this habit, I can’t help but be all or nothing in matters of the heart. I only know how to love one way, and that is unconditionally. It takes a lot to sever that love, but once it is, that’s it. I become completely closed off and cold (just ask the X). Will I end up missing out on the best connection I have ever had with someone because of my harsh protective instincts? Or do we have a connection strong enough it won’t matter what I’m doing if/when he comes back? Can you open a chapter again once it has been closed? This is unfamiliar territory for me. I haven’t ever had a relationship of any kind end without at least a part of me wanting it to. I don’t know how to navigate this. All I can do is take it one day at a time and see what happens.
Because I am SO GOOD at not having control of something...