I recently broke up with my girlfriend because of some parts that did not work.
For months we had talked about the same things; fought over the same things; repeated the same things. Each time leaving me drained.
She is not a bad person – neither am I – but some parts just did not work, so I broke up with her.
Straight away she called my Ma, then my sister. I got a call from her uncle, and her sister too! Things got messy as everyone had a point of view they wanted to share. All through this however, I kept mum around family. Only talking to a couple of friends, friends who, naturally, felt the need to offer advice – all of which I listened to, but none of which affected my thought process or decision making.
When, after three weeks of drama, I ran into her at a random event, the buck and kick I felt in my chest told me, more than anyone ever could, that I should give the relationship another try. I called her up and suggested we met and talked about stuff. Truth be told, I still loved her. Probably always will.
We agreed on her place, and on the day I made myself available.
After two minutes of awkward silence, and three more of senseless small talk, she assumed her cut-to-the-chase posture. And I braced myself.
“I have a few questions I want answered,” she started. “Not like it matters or anything like that. Please don’t think I am accusing you of anything, or suggesting you did stuff. It’s just that I’ve been hearing all this talk, and I just want to know..” All this hedging, and I knew what she was leading up to.
“Like I said, it doesn’t matter as my mind is already made up, so your answer doesn’t change anything. Please keep your mind at ease and be completely honest with me. I am a big girl, and can deal with the truth.” She paused, took a deep breath then rushed on. “Are you seeing anyone presently? Or when we were having our problems, before the break up? Please don’t think I am accusing you of anything. But even if it was just a fling, I need to know. So please tell me.”
She had been pacing, and by this time she had come to stand opposite me, arms accross her chest which was rising and falling like she had run a mile. She would not make eye contact with me.
I took my sweet time to compose myself.
“I have never lied to you,” I said. “And do not intend to start today. While it may not matter, it mattered enough for you to ask, so I will say this to you. Yes, there have been two people. One old, the other new.
“Remember the first time you broke up with me, and didn’t speak with me for three weeks? I met someone then and we had a thing, briefly. I broke it off when we got back together. That’s the new.
“And recently with all our problems and stuff, I confided in my ex. She’s been a pillar. She helped me stay focussed. But on one of those days, I was feeling really low and she was there for me.
“Whatever else you think, know that I never broke up with you because of a woman. Breaking up with you drove me to other women. All of that is past. I am here now, ready to do whatever is necessary to keep you in my life, because I know without a doubt this is where you belong. Right next to me.”
As she walked toward me, I figured all was forgiven and was preparing myself for the ’embrace and make up’. I planted both palms firmly on the cushion to give me a lift off the sofa, a smile making it’s way accross my face. My behind was a few inches off the seat when her backhand colided with my face – rings and all. The smile stopped dead in it’s tracks. I tasted the metalic saltiness of blood; saw a few stars; my mouth hung in the ‘O’ position; and my brain struggling to process what was happening when her palm cracked accross my face. The second slap planted my behind firmly back in the seat. Then she went off. “How dare you?! How could you?”
I heard a ringing in my ears, felt the heat rise from my neck to suffuse my entire face, and I must have blacked out for a moment, because when I blinked she was standing accross the room, arms accross her chest, a quizzical look on her face as she repeated, “So tell me.”
I can not lay claim to any special powers – clairevoyance or precognition – but in that instant I knew I had seen into my future.
I got up, walked to her, held her hands gently but firmly, pulled her close and looked her dead in the eyes.
“No. I have never been with another since you.” I said with as much feeling as I could pack into those words. I felt her slump, in relief I was certain. Her head drooped, she lifted both hands to her face and started to cry. Great shuddering sobs wracking her entire body. “I am sorry, I am so sorry.” She mumbled. “I know I shouldn’t have listened, but the way things were between us, it all seemed to fit. I am so so sorry.”
I gathered her in my arms, held her close to my chest and, very slowly, let out my breath.
Call me what you want, but I am not a coward.
I know honesty is the greatest ingredient in a relationship, but love does not care for it one way or the other. Love cares only for itself – for love is a selfish shedog!