Oh, the tangled web we weave.
People say an ex is an ex for a reason. If someone cheats, steals your identity, has a serious criminal record, could possibly be a threat to your well being, etc, those are certainly good reasons to live by that saying.
But, sometimes, an ex is an ex just because two individuals needed time apart. Time to grow. Time to heal. Time to learn and time to think without worrying about anyone but themselves for a little while.
So with that notion, after the self-growth, what happens when two people consider trying to work on getting back together after you broke up? That's one of those situations in life that no one ever teaches you how to navigate because there is no set course. You're somewhere between being on the journey to the promised land or standing outside in a sh*t storm.
It's a gamble. It's a crap shoot. It's absolutely nerve-racking, and it could potentially be one of the best OR one of the worst decisions you have ever made in your life.
Think that might be a tad bit stressful? Welcome to my life as I currently know it.
Contrary to what most of my articles discuss, I am not one who typically would prefer a random hookup with a new girl every night of the week. Don't get me wrong: Casual sex is awesome. It's fun. It's exhilarating, and it provides one hell of an ego boost (Lord knows I don't need that.), and it's always a new experience in at least some way.
What I don't write about, and what many fail to realize is… that sh*t is exhausting (and could be considered risky to people who are actually responsible).
Another thing that many readers fail to realize is I haven't spent most of my life living like a vagina-crazed frat boy. I haven't spent years embracing and loving my bachelorhood. I've had many more years of solid, committed, serial monogamy under my belt than I've had random women under my bed sheets.
The fact of the matter is, I went through a painful breakup, and I resorted to the coping mechanisms that I know how to use: alcohol and promiscuity.
I was doing all right. I wasn't doing great, or even OK, by any means, but I was, at least, surviving and healing bit by bit every single day. I've been through tough breakups before. I've read this book, I've seen that movie, and I wasn't going to be thrown off by any plot twist. Or so I thought.
Until she texted me.
We talked. We cried. We apologized. We talked some more. We became friends again, which is something we lost. We felt the love return. And, most importantly, we missed each other. Terribly.
I was spending so much time swimming in pools of booze and p*ssy that I never really took the time to process the emotions; I just stored them in the back of my mind and felt like the regret and the pain would slowly dissipate.
They never did. And now, here they are, in full force again.
It's not going to be easy for us to work on this. It might be the hardest thing we've ever done, as individuals and collectively. Yet, we still trudge on, assuring each other this is what we want. This is what we need.
But f*ck, damn… maybe we didn't quite burn the bridge, but we sure as sh*t took a jackhammer to the pillars and a saw to the cables that were holding it up.
Thinking about this now, as emotionally detached as I can possibly be, this is a daunting task. Getting back together with and loving an ex-partner, without letting the past get in the way of the future, is hard enough. Forgiving all mistakes and learning to live with regrets for the greater good of the relationship, that's even more difficult.
Compartmentalizing things that may have happened during your time apart, or toward the end while it was all sinking, might be the hardest thing of all.
None of these are impossible. Neither is doing a 5k race while walking on your hands, but I'm pretty sure every mother f*cker in the world who's capable of that could fit into a f*cking minivan.
I lied before. Multiple times. Never about infidelity, I NEVER cheated, but I lied about dumb sh*t: where I was, what I drank, if I smoked any weed, general stuff like that. It was never a situation that would have ended our relationship, but I was immature and selfish enough to lie simply to avoid a petty argument.
I've written an article about this after having my epiphany, and thinking back, I'm dumbfounded at what I couldn't see. It wasn't a matter of WHAT I did; it was a matter of HOW I would admit to it. Or, to be more accurate, not admit to it. I became someone she couldn't trust all because I got tired of arguing and decided it was easier to lie.
Is this something she can get past? Is it possible to prove to her that my mistakes have been the best teacher, and I'm not the same sh*t-bag liar I used to be? I don't know, but I'm willing to try. I'm willing to work to make it work.
She used to degrade me. My writing was never good enough. My songs were never catchy enough. I never had enough money, and my career path wasn't stable enough for her. She felt like because it was slightly unconventional, that my dream (my drive) could never be attained.
Can I believe her when she tells me she said this out of spite? Do I think she'll support me? Am I convinced she really believes in me as a person and, therefore, believes in me as a writer and artist?
I don't know. That cut deeply. It's a wound that still hasn't fully healed, and it will certainly take time. It was also the fuel I needed to start working harder and creating more, which has been a great benefit.
I have no idea if that's going to be something that sits there in my subconscious, if I would see this doubt behind her eyes every time we looked at each other. I couldn't tell you how us getting back together would impact me creatively.
I don't know, but I am willing to try. I'm willing to work to make it work. I'm willing to work with her.
We weren't separated for that long. The things I've done, can she look past them? Yes, I was single, and I had every right to, and plus, these are things that will never come up in my life again. Women I will never see or hear from or even receive a text, or call, or even Facebook message from, for f*ck's sake.
Still, even if it's not present in my present, it's always going to be in my past. And thus, indirectly in hers. Can she still look at me with respect and want to be with me intimately?
I don't know, but I'm willing to find out.