Or maybe not specifically about sex or even about relationships past, but about the lasting effects buried deep inside us that just find the most vulnerable moments to resurface. Only me? Well, this is going to be fun.
Let’s start off with the serious bits first… My past is a lesson in what not to do with your heart. I am every father’s nightmare case of the bad things that could happen. I met a boy who was charming and filled a need. Like every 18 year old girl with identity issues, I thought I knew everything and was too cool to be cautious with anything – especially my heart. There were so many warnings that even as the ignorance and arrogance of youth raged within me, I was aware that something was off with HIM. The problem was was that it was exciting and the drama made me feel like I was a part of something important. I was a part of a whirlwind romance, and it was definitely dizzying and all encompassing.
Without going into too much detail, my first love (and I’m using that strictly as a cliche term because what we had was far from it) was an absolute head case. Narcissistic with a mixture of insecurity, sadism, and daddy issues – oh and let’s add in a sprinkle of steroids to really get the party started. After 4 years together, this asshat left me (the first time) on Christmas Eve (like literally jumped on a plane and flew across the country), only to come back months later and emotionally, physically, and sexually abuse me multiple times. The strong woman I had considered myself to be was in a classic battered woman mentality. Well, eventually the whole thing just erupted and thankfully, I walked away bruised and shattered but alive and still me. I like to think that he may have dulled my light, he never was able to fully extinguish my flame – thankfully (deep breath).
This effected me in ways that I couldn’t even begin to understand. I was 20 and naive and just carried on, pretending that the trauma didn’t actually happen, drowning in a drunken numbness that lasted years. YEARS… years of my life living in an invisible shroud of shame, like I was stained with this ugliness and filth. I still feel it now – my skin has been scrubbed raw. During the day, I was successful in my job, far surpassing all of my peers in terms of career advancement, and at night I was reckless and a complete mess. I didn’t see how broken I was at the time.
But this isn’t a story about how I overcame anything – because I did and like most women who get out of messy, traumatic situations – we do survive and overcome and reclaim ourselves. We come out of these situations Veterans of the broken heart. It’s hard to stop the floodgates once they crack open so let’s move on to the point… I think this is more of an exploration of how deeply the people we open ourselves us too just stay within us.
What got me thinking about this was something totally cringe-worthy that I am having a really hard time moving past at this moment. Just thinking about it is just making me just internally lecture myself. Since having kids, I have barely had a drop of alcohol enter my body. I went from drinking pretty heavily to not at all – and never felt better. I don’t miss it, nor do I glorify drinks like I used to. At one point, I honestly thought I was an alcoholic but whatever I had, was resolved when my first baby entered my life.
Either way, once every few weeks, I like to pay homage to my past and stay up late and just get silly drunk by myself and my computer. This is never a good combination but oh, it is so so so fun when I’m doing it. I get some of my best work done (editing, designing and such) when I have that happy glow and just a little piece of quiet. For me, it’s honestly like catching up with an old friend- just the silly nonsense of me and my computer. The problem is when it starts to turn in those last few hours- the happiness turns to impulsiveness and nostalgia… see where I’m going here? I always know it’s coming and I honesty try to curb it, but my “fuck it” nature tends to overpower any sense of self control. (Thus this blog was born – seriously. This was a drunken decision gone right, so far).
This Saturday night, I’m getting happy and feeling the chains of responsible motherhood loosening as I blare Nelly through my headphones. I don’t know what triggered it but I started searching exboyfriends on Facebook. Not the crazy one – because we have each other blocked – but all the others that I either mowed them over during my reenactment of a trainwreck all those years or humiliated myself in from of. Each fling is like a caricature of whatever grieving stage I was going through – but that’s a story for another time.
So there I am Facebook stalking and judging and I wind up on K’s page. K has a new girlfriend. This is going to the pits pretty quickly. That eye twitch and this carnal feeling of ‘let’s start some shit’. Now K and I never really had a relationship in terms of commitment. He was my midnight call for years. He wanted more but clearly, I wasn’t at that place. I still continued my middle of the night escapes after our rendez-vous, peeling his warm embrace off of me. It wasn’t about running away from him, it was about protecting myself and perhaps him. But each time we saw each other, we danced and laughed for hours. He didn’t care that I was broken, maybe it even intrigued him like most men in my life.
He was there in the background from the first moment we met and just waiting patiently for this tornado that I was to come back to him over and over again as the years and scenarios revolved around us. He was happy with what I could give and never asked for what I couldn’t. As sad as it sounds, he was my safety net that just always knew how to pick me back up. I don’t think he ever knew that and I wonder now what I really was to him, why did he stay there. Maybe I was just a good lay – the cynic in me tries to rationalize. But all that aside, he was kind and gorgeous and adventurous, more carefree than I could ever imagine to be. Kind… probably the most important trait I look for in people now.
So there was K – staring back at me with this new girl. It wasn’t jealousy I felt but a longing of something I was missing or had missed. I can’t explain it but I’ll try. I don’t miss him and I don’t want him but I think I miss whatever it was that we had. But they had what I couldnt give for all those years… and though I know without a doubt I am married to my soul mate and have the best life… I still wonder and perhaps mourn what I’ve lost…
And maybe the sometimes stagnant part of my life right now just is begging for the destructive drama that my first relationship imprinted on me. Life is perfect now so let’s destroy, says the drunken witch of PTSD… the inner demon HE had left behind.
I messaged him. *Cringe* After years of nothing, I messaged him. I haven’t talked to him since I’ve had kids… since I’ve been married and here I was at like 2am on a Saturday (how obvious is that) I sent him a message asking him about “sailing lessons”. What the fuck? How fucking stupid is that? I woke up the next morning with this horrible feeling. I knew it was wrong. I had guilt just reeking through my pores, just like the hangover. This felt like cheating.
But it wasn’t cheating – and though the guilt still lives on- it wasn’t about him. My husband is the best thing in my life besides my kids. He is everything I ever wanted and more and no man, especially no ex, could ever hold a candle to him. My contact with him had nothing to do with wanting to reconnect with him. This was about me. And this lack of connection I have to my past. These imprints that men have left on me and what their relationship with me really can show me about who I was because so much of it all is a blur.
Remember kids- DO NOT drink and ask your exes for lessons to an obscure hobby they used to have. Oh and to K’s new girl- i deeply apologize and I do not want your man -honest.
Thankfully K is just so chill that what is an incredibly embarrassing situation for me can just easily be brushed under the carpet. But until then, I guess sailing might be in my future depending on how far I need to follow this white lie.
The ocean terrifies me