Saturday, August 30, 2008
In All Honesty, How Sorry I'll Always Be
B and I met a few years ago, at parties and such, and though we became friends relatively quickly, I always thought that our friendship grew out of a pot of somewhat awkward soil. It was spring 2006 and though I had broken up with my boyfriend, I was still hanging around his fraternity brothers - one of them being B. At the time, and especially in retrospect, I truly wanted nothing more than a really, really good friendship with him. But, sometime during those long conversations, parties we went to together, and those destination-less drives at night, things got a little more complicated than I expected, or even noticed. I can safely say now that I didn't notice because I didn't pay enough attention and I didn't pay enough attention because I didn't really care and that was because I was an insensitive biatch. At the time.
And so we hung out, and then we made out, and one thing led to another and before I knew it he started calling me his "girlfriend". (PS: I think this trend in forming those friendship-to-couplehood relationships via Sudden (Druken) Making Out is really not a good idea.) The first time I heard him say it out loud in my general presence I think I stopped breathing for a second. But, being the coward that I was, I didn't express to him my discomfort with that idea and the word and instead, continued with the pseudo-relationship until I just couldn't take the feeling of being committed to someone anymore and then I just got on a plane and flew over to the other side of the world. Our time apart provided me with just about two months with which to think things over and realize what I had gotten myself into - something that I didn't want. So, our communication broke down over that time (mostly because I didn't write to him (because I was afraid of confrontation; again, see: the fact that I was an insensitive biatch)), and when I got back into the country, I decided not to tell him the truth in what I figured out, but to spin some sort of half-assed excuse about needing my independence and space, and wanting to see other people. How I managed to construe needing more time and space to myself and leaving room to see more people into any rational sense bewilders me.
But, of course, it didn't end there - what dysfunctional relationship does? We continued seeing each other... and though it was destructive, something can be said for the fact that sometimes, you really just can't let a person go that easily. You have to do something to hang onto them, even if it does mean compromising your desire for a full relationship (in his case) and well, as for me, I got what I wanted: an easy-going thing with a great guy, no strings attached. And then there's more - I go and start hanging out with my ex-boyfriend again. And so we hung out, and then we made out, and one thing led to another and before I knew it we were seeing each other again. And there was B, spending time with me completely ignorant of what had happened that day with another boy (who was, incidentally, his Brother), patiently listening when I finally told him about the ex-boyfriend, calling me again and again to talk through things and to finally tell me that he understood and that he was okay with everything the way it was, the way I wanted it. It was all about me, and he graciously gave into that.
A few weeks later we went for a walk. He told me that he had been really unhappy for a long time, and that when he thought about why, it was all because of me. He told me that he was going to take himself out of the picture, that I could do whatever I wanted (because that's what I was doing anyway). He called me out on all the awful things I had done, on how badly I treated him throughout the whole time, how dishonest I was - and he was right. I was silent the entire time; it was the dishonesty piece that really got to me in the end - I had no reasons or explanations because dishonesty pretty much speaks for itself. And it says so much more about a person's character than anyone would ever care to admit. When he was done speaking, he really was done with me. I walked home alone and cried the whole way. I hadn't realized how much I was hurting him and I didn't ever really mean to. And here was the kicker: I didn't think that I had done anything wrong. Selfishness is blinding. I finally saw that I had been on the verge of losing someone really great the entire time.
He hasn't spoken to me since that night. I tried staying in contact with him, but there were never responses to my messages or emails. In the beginning, I was really disappointed, and then I was angry (because really, how rude!), but then I was completely and utterly thankful. He ultimately taught me that you can't just go around treating people like that, like the way I did: dishonestly and selfishly, doing whatever you want to do without regard for others' feelings. Suffice to say, I definitely learned my lesson. The last email I sent was about a year and a half ago, in February of 07, and it was triggered because I was listening to a few songs from a band that he really liked. I attach meaning very easily to inanimate objects, but I do so particularly strongly with music. He never replied. And I bet I'll still continue to think about him every time I hear that band.
Sometimes you put up a fight when someone walks away because they've earned that spot in your heart and you want them to stay there and you want them to know just how much they mean to you and you really do just need their presence in your life because that bond...it makes little sense but it really is that strong. And sometimes, when the other person is being insistent, I guess you'll just have to let them walk. Or, maybe neither of those things happens because life and all its dysfunctional relationships aren't ever so cut and dry.
Either way, to B: Perhaps you'll never read these words for yourself and you'll probably never hear them either because you've done a very good job of kicking me clear out of sight of your life (and I admire you for that - you always had such strong willpower), but I truly am sorry. Though I never intended to hurt you, I was wrong to treat you like I did and it took some time, but you taught me that, even though you weren't around to see the change or reap the benefits. Ultimately, I'm thankful. I learned several very important lessons from you (too bad you had to be a guinea pig on that one) that I'll never forget. There was a time when I wanted to chase after you, when I would have given anything to be your friend again, but - and it's a bit odd to say this with little sadness - I guess it's better that we're not.