Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Refl-Ex-ions of the Past

I saw Ex again this afternoon. She was walking down Oberlin toward Hillsborough Street, near the NC State Bell Tower. This time it was unmistakably her, which can only mean that she's back in school, probably working on a Master's Degree of some sort. I was tempted to pull over and offer her a ride, but I thought better of it.

For the next few hours I actually found myself fantasizing about a potential chance meeting in some eatery along Hillsborough and what the conversation would be about. Permutation after permutation wound their way throughout my mind like a boa constrictor until the life was drained from me.

I had almost begun to forget about her. The thrice daily prayers for her return to my life to no God in particular had dwindled to perhaps a once a week afterthought, and I was actively weighing options for looking for a new face to fill the loneliness. Then, almost as if by clockwork, Ex walks back into my view to remind me that she's still alive.

Don't get me wrong. I don't want her to NOT be alive, I just don't want to be reminded that she's alive and not with me! Or, perhaps more to the point, I don't want to be reminded that she's still with HIM, the guy she left me for.

It's really hard for me to get away from the sense that I was cheated out of something. I was, after all. But, after all this time (it will be three years the first week in June) what do I think Ex could possibly do to rectify my loss? I mean, she did give me almost a year of her life. But her cheating on me took almost three years away. The problem, of course, is that she can't give me back those years... I took them away from myself. I'm the one who allowed me to become saturated in a thick sauce of sadness and regret. And it was me who allowed myself to subconsciously place Ex in the familiar role of a mother who shouldn't have been my lover and who left me before I was ready.

The anger and misplaced jealousy that have kept me tethered to Ex for the last three years is the same anger and jealousy I experienced as a child, years before I realistically should have. The real tragedy here is that it is the debt of my mother which I have been waiting for Ex, and numerous others before her, to repay. It is a debt that has taken far more from me than Ex ever could. And, unfortunately, it is a debt that no one can ever repay.

So, I suppose if fate were to one day make that chance meeting with Ex occur in real life, rather than waiting for her to apologize to me for any supposed misdeeds, it might be in order for me to offer up my own apology to her. After all, no one should be made to pay for a crime they didn't commit.

Keep living life... or some approximation thereof.

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