Thursday, August 18, 2005

Protecting the past

On my commute to work this morning (yes, for those of you who know me in real life and know how long my drive is using the word "commute" is a disjustice) I had Alanis playing in the background. I picked up on a couple lines of lyrics that, not like I haven't heard them over and over again as Alanis is one of my favorite artists, caught my ear. To me they were very empowering lyrics, especially for those who might have just ended a relationship. Obviously I am a happily married woman but before I was happily married I was frustratingly single with even some very badly ended "relationships". Now, I use that term loosely as my past "relationships", especially during college, might not fulfill your expectation of how you would define one. But, nonetheless, no one has come up with a better term, so I shall use that. There was this one "relationship" in college I was in, the one that was so horrible that it makes you stand in awe of your husband even on his worst days. This one was bad. It was unhealthy and I left it feeling quite spent. It was that bad one that made me swear off men in general. I left it so torn apart and doubting who I was. It was one of those.

Recently, maybe a year or two ago I got the opportunity to talk with this individual. We hadn't spoken since months before my college graduation. I left P.A. leaving my past and all it's ugly secrets behind hoping that they wouldn't be able to find me. I did very well with this plan. I put myself in the Protective Services Program of past relationships changing everything about me, moved to NY hoping that I would never be found out. Unfortunately your past will always find you. No matter where you live, how happily married you are and what name you are being called by now, unless you have squashed it's ugly head, it will be there. After devoting a month of therapy to this subject, circumstances allowed me a conversation with this person. After 4 1/2 years, we spoke again. D knew of this pending conversation and was okay with it because he knew I needed to be okay again. He knew this and supported me. So, we spoke. And during that conversation somehow when it ended I was the one who looked like the bad guy. I was the one who made him fall. If I had been strong, he said, he would have followed. He said he lost respect for me because I reminded him of himself. This concept was so far fetched that I felt winded afterwards. I couldn't be to angry at him because I asked him to be honest with me. I should be careful for what I asked for. This was his own reality though and although I couldn't change that but I didn't have to agree with it. The conversation did help, I got the opportunity to say those ugly things I held inside for so long and in his defense he heard it. But those statement he made, to say that I was the reason for the demise stuck in my head for awhile. I knew I wasn't the main reason. He was unhealthy before me. His actions had nothing to do with me, that I knew. The fault that I would have to claim was allowing this relationship knowing the unhealthiness of it.

Supposedly, he had now found Jesus. He was in some high powered government job and working on his PhD. That was great for him. And yes, for a moment I did believe that maybe there was some truth in his belief of the demise. I believed the absurd concept up until recently when I heard news that confirmed my view, that, no, it wasn't all me, it might have been you. As if it was a flashback to our college years, he had gotten some woman pregnant. Someone he barely knew, but like in college, he found himself drinking too much again and found someone who fulfilled that physical need. Now here "Mr. I found Jesus and you made me fall", fell. Obviously he found more than Jesus, he found his past. I don't know why, but somehow this has compensated my feelings of powerlessness.

So, when I hear these lyrics by Alanis, this one part of the song, I feel empowered because I am not sad anymore nor do I miss him. I'm in the healthiest relationship, my dream relationship and couldn't ask for anyone better. D is everything I ever wanted in a spouse. Although I did carry these chains from these bad relationships, they have only made me appreciate more of what I have and every time I think about my past, I don't cringe, I just cling stronger to my stability.

I'm not saddened
and I don't miss you
Cause I have moved on too
I'm not concerned about your new lover
Cause I have a new lover too

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