Sunday, July 03, 2005

War for Independence

I woke up in a funk this morning and I just can't shake it. Actually, the funk has been building for a while, but today it seems worse. I'm not sure why.

Check that. I know why. I had a dream last night. About the ex. I haven't seen the woman in more than 10 months. I have only heard from her once in the last 7 months. And now I live in a city where we had no shared history, had spent no time, and yet I keep tripping over memories of her.

How can that be?

Now she' mocking me in my dreams. In the dream we were talking. I was telling her that I had moved and that I was hoping to buy a house. She had bought a house, but she laughed at the notion that I might buy one.

In the waking world I've been wondering if I should tell her that I had moved. I had no plans to, but the thought keeps popping into my head. Maybe my brain is just making excuses for a reason to get in touch. To make sure she knows where I am. I don't know.

I've been trying hard to model my post-breakup behavior based on what women seem to do much better than I have ever been able to master. Women seem to be able to move on much better than men. I don't know if they ever think about their exes or not, or ever wonder where they are or what they are doing, but women do a better job of walking off and not looking back. Or at least they seem to be better at it. Perhaps women learned that lesson after Lot's wife looked back on the destruction of Sodom and turned into a pillar of salt. Maybe women don't want to make the same mistake their sister did, and just leave the destruction in their wake without a second look.

I'm trying to get better at it as well. And maybe, the key is not to get these thoughts and feelings out of my head, but not to act on them. Not to let them turn my head. I don't know.

I threw out a lot of stuff when I moved, including a couple of house plants, one of which I had had for probably almost 10 years, maybe more. But I kept this little "lucky bamboo" plant, which is now the only plant I have left. I didn't think much about why I kept that one, except it was bought as a replacement for another plant like it that my daughter and her grandmother bought for me several years ago. The ex killed that one. Before I moved into her place, she had no plants in her place. She had a knack for killing plants. But I was able to keep two plants alive throughout the relationship. And I kept the replacement bamboo plant alive too.

But I think maybe it's time to quit nurturing that little plant, which has lived longer than the relationship ever did. I don't know that letting it go will have any corresponding relationship to letting some memories go, but I do feel like I need to do something to exorcise the demons.

I thought that getting past the one-year anniversary of the breakup last month, and a move to a new place would finally put her memories behind me. But the reality is, it has gotten worse, not better. Before I moved, I could go days without confronting a thought or memory of her. Now, her name springs to mind several times a day.

For a while I thought maybe writing to her to tell her I moved might help get the thought of her out of my head. There would be no need to think about writing to her if I already did it, right?

I'm sure a lot of this is exacerbated by moving to a new place, starting a new job and knowing no one in my new city. My mind is grasping for things familiar, known. I'm trying to find me in a new place where I'm alone, and frankly pretty lonely.

Tomorrow is July 4th. America's Independence Day. I long for my own independence. But maybe there is a lesson for me to to learn from the story of America's history.

Colonist declared their independence from England on July 4, 1776, but that did not make America free from English rule. The Revolutionary War itself did not end until Sept. 3, 1783, when the Treaty of Paris was signed, recognizing the United States of America as a nation unto itself.

So, declaring independence is one thing. Truly winning it is something else entirely.

I guess I'm still fighting my war for independence. I just hope this fight doesn't take another 6 years to resolve.


OldHorsetailSnake said...

Wrapper: Sorry you're feeling sad. Better get out of the house and find some companionship in your neighborhood bars, the library, associations of recreational interests. Don't kill the bamboo: Let it be your inspiration to turn some corners. Hell yes, write the ex. and tell her where you are. You can't get hurt any worse. KEEP SMILING!

Anonymous said...

You know I support you, no matter what you do. That war is a tough one, but it can be won. di

Weary Hag said...

As I read this nicely written post, I was reminded of myself many years ago while going through a long-term breakup. I completely understand and empathize with your sudden influx of memories, your indecision and your loneliness.
Time is an amazing "fixer" of many dilemmas. The problem with time is that we have to sit on the sidelines until the "fixing" kicks in.
I say keep the plant, nurture it, and your own self along with it.
(don't mind my two cents... I read and before I know it, I'm commenting ~ no harm meant)
By the way, that was quite insightful about comparing womens tendancy to turn away and move on, with Lot's wife. You could be onto something there. Very clever.
Hope you begin to defunk soon.

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