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posted by [personal profile] bethofalltrades at 12:57am on 31/03/2009 under , , ,
I had a dream about my ex girlfriend last night. We passed each other in an office hallway as if we didn't know each other. I turned and held out my arms and she turned and saw and walked back to me.

She has no internet presence. No MySpace, no blog, no twitter, no Facebook, no Friendster, no LJ. Evidence of my current life and loves is all over the net but she's a virtual ghost.

We were always different in that way. I am an open book. She demanded privacy. Two ends of the spectrum, both strange in our extremes.

But now we haven't spoken in a year and a half and she's not holding up her end of the arrangement. She can view my triumphs and setbacks from a safe distance but if I want to know about her life, this woman who I shared the darkest parts of me with, I have to call.

I'm not going to call.

We have been apart longer than we were together. She moved on before the ashes were cold, leaving me railing and frothing about Staten Island gym teachers. She might be a half dozen women past that one by now. I don't know.

I am still sad about it. I don't want her back. I don't want to hit her or poison her dog or key her car. I don't want to ask why, because the why is simple: sometimes it doesn't work. Sometimes what you are feeling and what the other person is feeling are different.

Sometimes you can make yourself into what the other person seems to want only to find that she liked what you were before better.

I was a child in that relationship. I let her dictate the rules and the boundaries. She wanted someone she could mold and teach. She needed to be smarter and wiser and more worldly. She needed to be more balanced. She wanted an urban-trendy professional girlfriend so I bought gold slip on sneakers and wore khakis and blazers.

I am wearing a blazer today, but it's over a Battle Circus t-shirt. I pitched the sneakers for Doc Martens. Tattoos-- which she didn't like on me, she said-- have been revealing themselves on my arms like bruises and I love them because I finally feel real.

I say that no one dies. I calm my inner spastic freak-out princess. I breathe. I open my heart to as my people as I can stuff in it, I open my home to most who ask, I go to yoga when I'm not being lazy and I don't shower every day anymore. My ex showered twice a day most of the time and I got in the habit too, but honestly? I like being dirty sometimes.

In the dream, when I held out my arms, I saw the tattoos and wondered if she would still know me. Not recognize me. Know me.

I don't think she does. No matter how much of myself I toss out into the internet, no matter if she sees every photo of me flashing my panties at the merch table, no matter if she reads this blog, that girl doesn't know me any more.

I don't know her anymore either.

I don't think I want to.

But I want to know ABOUT her.

There are 17 comments on this entry. (Reply.)
posted by [identity profile] at 05:26am on 31/03/2009
That is a bit of a confusing feeling. I dont want to speak to a particular ex ever again but I do feel the need to know his whereabouts and his goings on, in a loose sense. Every once and awhile, I see if he had updated his blog and then I feel very depressed and sometimes he still mentions me even though it's been six years.

It's a strange thing, having loved and still loving but knowing better, no longer wanting. Strange indeed.
posted by (anonymous) at 05:37am on 31/03/2009
strange indeed, such an unbalanced feeling. in my case i think part of why i still love is because if i thought for even a second it wouldn't lead down the same barren road, and end in the same empty parking lot i would want again.
posted by [identity profile] at 05:45am on 31/03/2009
I....feel exactly the same way.

I want it desperately....but I am not willing to follow that path again.
posted by (anonymous) at 05:32am on 31/03/2009
you are such a gifted, insightful and emotive writer. i'm trying to learn the art of calming my inner spastic freak-out princess but i'm still very much in the n00b stage of that skill. i shower when needed, not on a schedule, it seems best that way. though there are those people who are a bit too lenient when it comes to bathing. doc martens are better than sneakers, what was her problem?

you are a person i think i'd like to know, but since i don't it sure is fun to know ABOUT you ;)
posted by [identity profile] at 07:45am on 31/03/2009
I'd like it boils down to nothing more than simple gossipy curiosity.

BTW. I need to hug you soon. It had been too damn long.
posted by [identity profile] at 08:23am on 31/03/2009
It's way different, but sometimes I feel this way about the Boy Who Disappeared.

That even if he came back to me in a few months, he wouldn't know me. That even though I am the same on the outside, I still wear my jeans ripped on the bottom because they're too long and my T-shirts wrinkled, that he would no longer know me because of all of the things inside that are churning and beginning to shake loose.

And I have no fucking idea if I would know him.

But closure, wanting to know ABOUT him from a distance when it no longer hurts... yeah, I understand that, even if the relationship is different, the timescale different.
There's a fine, fine line between love and a waste of time.

Such profound things to come from the mouth of a muppet in a broadway musical, but there is definitely some truth in them.

Beth, i love your blogs and i love bethofalltrades, who ever she may be, as i cannot say that i love YOU because i dont know you which is a TOTAL shame! But it's not my fault you didn't come to New Zealand but that's not your fault either, that's just life. BUT!

My story had a point...
Ah yes.

That curiosity...that kind of...part of your brain that shuts off for 23 hours of the day but then comes out when you're not expecting it...that is sometimes the hardest bit to deal with. Initial pain and ache and distress eventually passes in time, as we all know. But that curiosity...depending on who she was...can eat at you for years. Yeeeeears, i say. And it's bordering on bizarre sometimes, how you find yourself wondering...just wondering. It never ends at Goodbye...does it?

I think it is so fucking amazing how one human can impact another's life temporarily or permanently and mostly without any idea or intention at all.

Well you impacted her...
She's impacted you...
You're impacting me.

The fact that you've learnt from her is what makes that curiosity completely worth it.

Beth, @bethofalltrades, Miss Hommel,
Whoever you are,
Wherever you are,
Whether or not we shall ever meet...
I love you.
posted by [identity profile] at 01:51pm on 31/03/2009
I too often wonder about exes. I try not to think about them though. It's better that way most of the time. At least a bunch of mine have some kind of online presence, although none of them very big.

And why would you want to be with someone who'd want to be with a Staten Island gym teacher of all things?
posted by [identity profile] at 02:16pm on 31/03/2009

I feel like I probably say this too much, and maybe it loses its significance because of it, or maybe it makes me sound creepy as fuck. But you are such an amazing person, and I hope that you never let yourself change for anyone else. Because you are pretty fucking fabulous as you are right now.

I'll deliver a real life version of Amanda's virtual hug when I see you, and there'll be one from me as well, most definitely. Love needs to be shared at all times, especially ones like this, I think.
posted by [identity profile] at 02:27pm on 31/03/2009
I have an ever growing persistent desire to know ABOUT my exes, well, just 2 really... One lives 45mins away, and talks to me too much... One lives a 5min walk around the corner in the same apartment complex as me, and I never talk to her anymore...

And it's not that I'm not happy where I am, because I am, completely... I just want to know what they're up to. If *I* ever cross their mind sometimes, b/c sometimes when I least expect their faces will pop up, and it shakes me... and I just want to know if they do the same thing.

Even if you can never know someone again like you used to, a part of you will always be with you, a part of you will always hold them close to you with love... I think this is the part that "just wants to know"...

I briefly met you when I brigade-ed @ the DDolls show in Houston last year... you were bad-ass and made quite the impression on me... this new finding of your LJ has made me all sorts of happy. :)
posted by [identity profile] at 11:02pm on 31/03/2009
This might seem unrelated, but it's not. Have you read "Eat, love, pray" ? It's not my normal kind of read, but I picked it up for cheap, and because I had been told it was a good book. It is. I'm about half way through it, and every page I find something to nod at. The entire premise is about self exploration, and relationships (both with the divine and people). Pick up a copy...heck, if I can sit down long enough to finish the bugger I'll bring it to you.
posted by [identity profile] at 11:03pm on 31/03/2009
That would be "Eat, PRAY, Love"... whatever you get the gist.
posted by [identity profile] at 12:31am on 01/04/2009
I know the feeling. There are a few ex-gfs I don't want contact with (much less to rekindle past relationships), but I'm a little curious what they've been up to, if they've changed, etc... I'm not curious enough to actively seek them out, but still wonder sometimes.

There's one I might want to be friends with, because things ended when she got an amazing job offer far away, and it hadn't really been long enough to uproot my life and move with her. There are some with whom I am in contact, or at least sporadic contact.
posted by [identity profile] at 12:43am on 01/04/2009
Beth, I love you and this was beautiful.

But if you were to find out about her, it would be likely that you'd be forced to read grammatically hideous e-mails full of u for you and their for they're, etc. :)
posted by [identity profile] at 05:58pm on 01/04/2009
I should also mention that I completely echo the sentiment

"I don't know her anymore either.

I don't think I want to.

But I want to know ABOUT her."

I always want to know About.
posted by [identity profile] at 06:19pm on 01/04/2009
The past, with its loves and hates, memories and regrets, joys and laughter, never really is gone. It hides in the shadows of our souls, waiting to remind us that the decisions, the choices, the "coulda, shoulda, woulda" times are the things that ultimately help us grow into the person we truly need to be. Enjoy this time - your youth - and relish all your experiences. You are beautiful, you are brave, you are a formidable woman!
posted by [identity profile] at 07:33pm on 01/04/2009

There are sentiments that have bounced between the walls of this site and that, at times, echo my own thoughts. To the point where sometimes i wonder if you materalise them by reaching into the air.

One ex of mine left such a deep impact that i truly wonder will the appearances in dreams and random occiasional thoughts ever go away. At times i read a forum where they post and take some comfort in the fact that they're still alive(fighting a long battle with depression) and kicking.

Nice to see i'm not alone in this :)



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