Ending a relationship is hard enough but the after effects are almost always a series of tremors. What do we do once it’s all over and the volcano of your affections has roared itself into a tiny growl? The person you once were so familiar with has become a stranger, one of you are hurting to the point that you surrender to the ego and let it rule you, possibly making mistakes that you will never be able to repair. Setting aside the emotions and damages for a moment, what do you do with all the stuff that houses all the memories? There are CD’s, personal belongings; the toothbrush is almost always the first item to be tossed into the bin. There are bubbling residuals of cards, notes, shower-gels, ornaments of affection and the lingering smell on the sheets. No amount of detergent or vigorous scrubbing can wash away the memories that were built.
So what do we do? Does the love stay, stray, linger or become converted into a soap-opera type of disdain for the person you once thought so highly of. Adding more mini stabs to the wound is when the man that serenaded you (slightly out of tune) and told you he would die a thousand deaths for a glimpse of your face in the morning has replaced you and is seducing some other woman with qualities similar to yours.
I should add that if most relationships ended somewhat amicably there would be no reason for me to write this at all. I believe all disgruntled people have nodded in unison.
Some of the lingering volcanic after-tremors that amuse me are when the grapevine news comes swinging through from some of your mutual friends. They tell you that he tried to return the Ipad you bought him, was more interested in your financial assets than you, still misses his ex girlfriend, was seeing someone when you both were dwindling on the word ‘over’, or that he secretly thought you had an obsession for cleaning. Did he not know he sprayed like a walrus in the bathroom? Suddenly your ‘mutual’ friends are looking slightly one–sided and at times may borrow a dart or two from your ex and even aim, leaving you gaping in amazement. The same friends that cheered for you two to be together are now converted pimps, hooking him up with anything that has reproductive organs.
Then there’s all sorts of revenge we plot in our heads, don’t lie; you’ve done it at least once. Even if we are the dumper or the dumpee . Yes, I made those terms up. We all want the other person to know that we’ve moved on and fabulously so, or put them in all kinds of evil scenarios that include the strategic placement of hot curling irons, stalking their FB pages, trying to peep at their twitter feeds, posting pictures of dating someone new. Shameful? Maybe, but I believe it’s part of the process of relationship growth. See, this is where I’ve finally evolved after a long time, I’m simply happy residing with my own self. It was an epiphany that hit me the way one of my stilettos in my overcrowded closet falls on my head. Some people had apples I had a shoe – just the geography of enlightenment I suppose.
I’ve learnt that it’s important to move on with regality. That means clamping your lip- glossed mouth shut when someone asks you for the dirty details. Let’s learn a thing or two from the French here shall we? Let’s not hang our skivvies on the fine line of gossip for everyone to see, as delicious as is it for the unpinning of dangling delicates, dry them inside. Try to think, keyword try, of all the good that came of the time you had with this person and regardless of how you have hurt them or how they have hurt you, forgive them and forgive yourself, then move on. No creeping on Facebook walls, move on, click on something more productive. You ended it for a reason, or they did, so take some time to shed some tears, call your friends, scream, eat a box of cookies and then dust it, yes, even the crumbs.
Then there’s the hurt, even if you were in a relationship where you knew it wasn’t right for yourself. You know, the kind where you stay because it’s like one of those dresses you hang in your closet, waiting for the right occasion to wear it and once you do, you realize the color is putrid and it’s two sizes too tight. Of course you didn’t gain any weight, you must have been dehydrated the day you bought it. I know it’s trite, comparing relationships to garments but the sentiment resonates, you thought it was right but until you didn’t delve into it, there was no way of knowing it wouldn’t work. I once asked a happily married woman if she thought her relationship was forever. Her answer surprised me. She told me that there’s a line up for ‘forever’ and not even sure if there are any more tickets available. ‘Even being married offers you no guarantees.” That’s just the way it is, we can stake our claim, choose another, but have zero control if the other person chooses us and places the rosy crown of love on our heads and if they do, there is no guarantee that it won’t slide off or poke us with a thorn. It’s all a bit gloomy but it gets me thinking about how there should be some dignity in breakups, sort of how there really should be ethics in business. Don’t snort, I said should be.
Know that it’s over for a reason, that there is something much better out there waiting for you, and in the meantime hang out with yourself, look for something that creates a spark in you, where only you can have the jewel encrusted lighter to, one that can light up your surroundings. Be ethical; don’t hop into something or onto someone trying to alleviate the hurt, that’s selfish and completely unfair to them, a lack of respect to yourself and to a relationship you once had. You’re one of a kind and so very special, a piece of a large puzzle of this magnificent life. Build that puzzle of your life with integrity and all the other pieces will fall into place and something so very strange may happen. You may just love your own company so much that anyone else that sets foot in your rosy life is just an added bonus.
* Dedicated to all the women that have been hurt, survived it and have found themselves a champion.