As I walked down a less than crowded DC street, I felt sad. As I strolled, with plenty of time to reach my destination, I pondered my feelings, the subtle ache in my heart. I wondered, Why am I feeling this way?
As per Doc’s request, I have been more tuned into my emotions in the moment, noticing how people feel about me, and actively noting my feelings towards others. I thought for a moment, thought about my day, and it hit me.
I didn’t want to admit, still don’t want to admit it, but that doesn’t make it any less true.
I miss the Gent.
He came up briefly at my last session, just a passing mention that I hadn’t contacted him since August.
But then, walking towards my gig, it hit me. Yes, I missed… miss him.
I tried to think of why this was coming up now (since missing him has been mostly just background noise since I stopped contacting him). And I realized, almost as abruptly, that I was inadvertently triggered last night.
I was pulled over by a cop at 3am, his only comment (since I wasn’t speeding and had not consumed any alcohol that evening) that I needed to change out my bike rack. Apparently part of it obstructs my license plate (grounds for a ticket). He gave me a verbal citation, asked me if there were any illegal items in the car (“drugs, guns.” “Oh God no!”) and then let me on my way.
One of the last times I saw the Gent, one of the last times I saw his smile, big and wide filling his entire face, he commented on my bike rack. He asked me how often I rode, and when was the last time I used it. And then, in only a minorly asshole-ish way, he verbally jabbed me for having a bike rack but not riding my bike.
As I walked down a DC street, past the Mall, dark at that time of night, I thought about him. As I passed a few people in the middle of Chinatown, a few faces made me think of him too.
It was then I also admitted a hard fact to myself: I was sad each and every time his face did not pop into my view.
I may never see him again, may never speak to him again, may never anything with him again.
In one of my previous sessions with Doc, I likened my feelings about the Gent to alcoholism. Doc said I wasn’t that far off.
My feelings, emotions, my desire to keep going back to a man who was not all that good for me is like fighting an addiction. My brain is hard wired to seek out love from unavailable people. I was given the example of an absent father and my brain has equated my mother’s relationship with him as to how love should be.
But that is not the kind of love I want.
When we started, the Gent was great. But then he began doing shitty things and never apologized for them. Cutting him off was, and is, a healthy choice for me.
Everyday, every moment, I make the decision to not call, not text, not contact him. With every breath I am fighting my brain’s impulses, fighting my learned behaviour, fighting for a happier healthier love life.
So far, I’m winning the battle, but who knows how long the war (and my resolve) will last.
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