Don’t you despise those articles, “12 Reasons Why You’re Better Off Without Him?” or “15 Ways He Will Ruin Your Self-Esteem?”
Don’t you resent the fragile people who are taking stock in these articles?
Don’t you cringe at the friends who ask you, with complete irrationality in their voice, to analyze their relationship with them whilst interpreting pages of text messages, opened (or unopened) Snapchats and you repeatedly saying, “No, that’s not him in the background shadows of her Instagram post from 152 weeks ago. I swear.”
My eyes are rolling so far back into my head as I sit here writing this now.
Who could be so illogical?
I am perpetually emotionless. I’ve always been so proud of that characteristic about myself. I guess I never was educated on the importance of having a significant other. Boys were just there.
I went through high school never having a boyfriend. There were boys who liked me, who would ask me out and I would decline every time. Not for any reason except that I preferred myself as I was.
But then college came and so did Jordan.
I was one week shy of making it out of my freshman year when I wrote this in my diary in May of 2012:
“This morning he asked me to be his girlfriend and I know he likes me a lot more than I like him, but he’s already growing on me so much. This is weird.”
I can honestly report that after that, everything is a blur.
He said I love you, I said it back, we laughed together, we rapped together, I made him mixed CD’s, he made me mac n’ cheese. Jordan was my best friend.
But Jordan was so bad, that I became good. Good at looking the other way.
Like I said, I am perpetually emotionless.
In an effort to spare you from combing through my archived list (actually, it could be more comparable to a catalog, alphabetized and dated by specific offense) of the hurtful things I experienced, I’ll paraphrase it with a quote by journalist Benjamin Dover.
“Its okay to look back at the past, just don’t stare.”
Update: Not so emotionless.
In a week’s time, I found myself waking up in the mornings and being completely exhausted before I had even stood up.
My public speaking class was one that I dreaded going to because I was incapable of giving a presentation without tears streaming down my face.
Receiving Facebook notifications for an unread private message induced nausea in me, and still does, for fear that it was another girl contacting me, mocking me for my naiveté.
Everyone knew what was going on with me, but no one really knew.
I was hurting so much that I stopped.
I stopped laughing, stopped talking, stopped going out with friends, stopped eating, stopped taking care of myself.
No one was allowed to know about my pounding heart beat at night or that I was getting in my car and driving to empty parking lots just so that I could cry privately, away from all of the concerned looks from friends.
I used to be so proud of my strength. How the hell did I become this person?
Life kept going whether or not I wanted to get out of bed that day.
I started running, started friendships, started remembering that I used to be damn funny and I started to forgive.
I am thankful for so many things in my life. I am thankful for my family, for my education, and more, but I can easily, without hesitation, say that I am most thankful for Jordan.
Sure, he made me cry but he also made me wise.
I am thankful for the year that I spent down on the ground because it was there that I found humility, maturity, kindness and (on occasion) my voice.
My point in all of this is that we don’t meet people by accident. Be aware of the fact that each individual that you come across will sculpt you, so practice caution with whom you let in.
Our youth is too short to miss out on being really, really happy so start forgiving when you’re sad, go for a run, learn to be alone and maybe even hug your cat more.