Monday, December 05, 2011

Dear ex-boyfriend: my pillow doesn't snore like you did

I am the queen of breakups. I realised this 2 years ago when I first came to live 'out in the sticks'. I was licking my wounds after an awful split, the one that seemed like it was splitting my body, soul and mind into a million fragments. Fortunately, that wasn't the outcome, and I pulled myself together, after a fashion.

I'm now nursing my third breakup since I've been in my abode - and for once, I can say that I'm coping a lot better. I used to believe that the more heartbroken and destroyed you were, that this meant you'd lost the love of your life. Well, on that basis alone, I must have had about 6-15 true loves to date. Lets face it. None of them were really 'the one'. In some cases, they were downright creeps who I'd cross the road just to avoid. Now, I think I have a little bit more self-respect and can skip the hysterical drama queen, crying my eyes out for weeks thing and deal with life for a few days with a slumped head and sloped shoulders.

Even though I feel the natural disappointment and missing the other person that you experience after a failed relationship attempt, I know that the intensity is no adequate measure of depth of feeling, affection or sense of loss.

Old habits die hard, though. On a cold winter's night, alone, a bit blue and thinking of all the could have's, should have's and why did I bothers, I pull out the usual comforts. Booja-booja rum truffles, red wine, sappy emotional break up songs, and revisiting the past through old letters and photographs. I re-read things I'd written 6 years ago and made myself laugh out loud. I contemplate phoning my ex-boyfriend. I write the start of a short story. I make myself an amazing dinner and feel happy about drinking another glass of wine without having someone there to judge or criticise me. I reset my iPhone to factory settings and look up things on the internet just on a whim.

As one friend said, although things are bad (not just the breakup), it's the closing of a chapter, and with the loss of life as we know it, we're making way for brighter and better things. Change is good, change is necessary; it keeps us alive, vital, on our toes. It shows us what matters, what's present.

Here are a few wallowing self-indulgent songs I played to fully milk the self-pity before feeling completely disgusted with myself. I'm sure there are a gazillion more to add to this list.

Music to break up to / get over it
Luther Vandross - Always and forever
Cat Stevens - Wild World
Neil Young - Only Love Can Break Your Heart
Yazoo - Only You
Isaac Hayes - Never Can Say Goodbye
Psychedelic Furs - Love My Way
R.E.M. - You Are the Everything
Brave Combo - Nothing is Permanent
Foreigner - I want to know what love is
Fleetwood Mac - Dreams
Gloria Gaynor - I will survive

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