I have a confession to make.
Last summer, I met a man. I met him at one of the camps I do every summer, while I was in Europe. He’s funny and has a great accent and plays awesome pranks. Friendship was fast. I definitely had a camp crush on him. But I don’t have time for that kind of thing.
And then we kissed. (Gross, I know. Bear with.) We kissed and held hands and snuck away for walks at night and had stupid jokes and shared looks from across a room full of kids who had no idea. The only thing better than kissing a cute boy is kissing a cute boy who makes you laugh. But I was leaving, and that sucked. It sucked every time I thought about it. As I got on a bus to the airport I tried to say goodbye and he told me he had feelings for me. He broke the “we don’t talk about feelings” rule we’d quietly established. He had Feelings and I had to get on a bus. But his Feelings made my Feelings ok, so I texted him from the bus and I didn’t realize how much I’d started when I kissed him.
We didn’t decide that we were going to try a relationship, because we didn’t really have a choice. We were in a relationship and he was my boyfriend and we were making plans. It was going to be hard but not trying was even harder. I could let him be a part of my mess because he wanted to be.
I went to see him in the winter. I was anxious on the plane, about to see this man that I had Feelings for, in real life. I was so used to seeing him through a screen. He’s tall. Tall in a way I’d nearly forgotten. We did couple things. We went out and celebrated the new year and he tried on new jackets and bought the one I liked best. We took stupid pictures and cooked and remembered how it felt to be in the same place. He made me happy.
We made more plans. We skype-met family members and best friends. We talked about places we should visit. He called me late one night (late for him…time zones are one of the worst parts about long distance relationships, other than the actual distance) and told me we were getting a dog. It was silly and he might have been drunk but it was all part of this thing we’d created and I loved it.
I loved it so much that I let myself forget that things end. Despite everything we’ve talked about around here, I forgot. I forgot that people leave you.
He stopped talking to me. Stopped answering my messages. Every attempt I made to contact him was met with total silence. So I stopped trying. I was suffering an overflow of feelings because I had no idea how to feel. It was two months of silence. For a while I wasn’t even sure if he was alive, but hoping his family would call me if something was wrong. We finally had three short text conversations, days apart. (I’ll save that for another day.) I was left without answers, crossing a trip together off my calendar.
I don’t know what happened. I’ll probably never know. But I do know that I deserve better. I’d rather be alone than this. I’ve been slowly removing evidence of him from my life. Things went in a box. I changed my facebook status. I don’t need two time zone clocks on my phone anymore.
I know telling you about all of this must be surprising. It goes against everything we’ve talked about around here for so long. It felt weird to not tell you, but I set certain rules for myself when I started writing this blog, and I’ve been pretty good about upholding them. Also, the Long Distance aspect totally set this apart from other relationships. You’re not alone!!! but you’re alone. It’s not like I was having regular, smug makeouts and then coming here and telling you all how much I hate seeing couples make out. (EVEN THOUGH I DO.) It's hard to tell you this because it's hard to tell anyone. It comes dangerously close to talking about feelings. It's shitty to talk about. And it's shitty to go to your ex-boyfriend's wedding while all this is happening. But we're into the honesty thing, right?
So…it’s time to get back to our roots. I’m fastidiously avoiding trips to Sad Town, where Adele is the queen and Hallmark movies are too much to take. Instead I’m living comfortably in Angry. It’s a lot of Ke$ha and P!nk and vengeful T@ylor Swift. (Girl, you should consider that name change.) It’s a lot of rage-fueled workouts and yes, ok, a few peanut butter cups, you don’t get to judge me, and that’s all WAY EASIER to deal with than Sad Town. So let’s move on and complain about PDA and the wedding bouquet toss. You with me?