My ex-boyfriend J is getting married.
I’ve often said nothing good comes from a sentence that begins, “So I was on Facebook…”
That’s how I found out. His engagement was at the top of my news feed.
My stomach sank to my feet. Hope dashed. Fantasy abruptly ended.
I felt sad. Silly. Stupid. Ashamed.
I love J. I always have. I knew him the second I saw him. I’m pretty sure it was the same for him.
We dated in our 20s. Ours was a sweet, sexy romance – albeit brief. Our breakup caught me off guard. Perhaps because he more than one time said, “I know I’m going to marry you. And we’ll have daughters. I know we will have daughters.”
I’ve written about this – about him, about us – before.
The last time we saw one another was in California – about 17 or 18 years ago – on Venice Beach. I was returning my roller skates. Until I found him on Facebook. His profile picture was a photograph from childhood. I wasn’t entirely certain it was him, so I wrote, “Is that you?”
“It is indeed me,” he replied. “And it is indeed you.”
In the years that followed, we wished one another happy birthdays, occasionally commented on each other’s status, and traded inside jokes – mostly about Philip Roth and liver. We occasionally had lengthier exchanges. Like on his birthday in 2012. I was delayed in Brussels. He was on his way out for a crab dinner. I told him I was getting divorced.
This past summer we spoke for the first time since Venice. After hearing his voice, I remarked, “Oh…that’s what you sound like.” I had forgotten.
That night he told me why he ended our relationship. I had asked many times over the years but he had never responded to that particular piece of the conversation. This time he did.
He said I woke something up in him. A piece of him that desperately needed healing – healing I couldn’t give him. That he had to do for himself.
He had been attracted to me. To our sexual energy. And that something about my “honest, open, dirty, loving way” got under his skin. “In a good way.” And he ran.
He affirmed that I had been important in his life. Just not in the way I had hoped to be.
I knew J was in a relationship and had been for many years. That he always exercised terrific boundaries.
And yet, there was always a little piece of me that held out hope … that maybe one day J and I would find our way back to one another – in that way. I didn’t live my life maneuvering around it. Obsessing about it. But it was there.
And now it isn’t anymore. It can’t be.
A couple of weeks ago J showed up in my clairvoyant reading and healing. He had in the previous one too.
The first time he showed up, the clairvoyant saw us holding hands, smiling, and taking a big leap together. She said we may never connect again romantically, but that we are inextricably bound for life.
I didn’t like that so much – the first part.
The second time he showed up, she simply said, “You just let go of him.” And that 10 percent of my energy returned to me immediately.
I had no idea. I hadn’t even tried. And I didn’t like that so much either.
But perhaps she was right, because this afternoon I did something that surprised me. I was drafting a personal note to send, but chose to post a comment to his wall instead – just like hundreds of his other friends had done. Just another Bozo on the bus. Not claiming any special status.
“Mazel Tov! Wishing you much joy.”
Not even an “XO” – our usual sign off.
It is not untrue. This is what I wish for him. In the most honest, open, dirty, loving way.