Between Crazy and Comedy

I was wrong when I said the saddest part about breaking up with TWD was breaking up with his kids.  That was a sad part but the actual saddest part was breaking up with him, as evidenced in the unpacking.

We had the handoff on Sunday morning.  I gave him back his house key, the ID badge he’d accidentally left on my desk, some Star Wars candy I’d forgotten to give him for Christmas and the letters for his kids.  Everything fit into a small brown paper bag.

He gave me a huge box and two large bags: the robe I’d bought so to avoid accidental exposure around his children, the “soccer mom” pjs, the Game of Thrones tank top and matching flannels he made for my Christmas present last year, the yoga pants, the toiletries, the pumpkin spice scrub his sister-in-law gave me, the wine he’d bought for my parents, the copy of Love and Other Demons I’d loaned him, the boots I’d left in his closet in the hopes of someday going for a romp through the snow with my boyfriend…

Par for the course, everything was neatly packed and perfectly folded and I don’t know why but the folding put me over the edge.  Of course he’d fold it all perfectly.  He always folded everything perfectly.  Even my underwear.

But that wasn’t the worst part.

The worst part was finding the nightgown that I must have worn the last time I spent the night at his house.  It still smelled like him.

Everything else just smelled like laundry detergent or the inside of his dresser drawer but not the nightgown.  It smelled like him, and smelling him put me over the edge all over again.

I didn’t even like how he smelled half the time.  I was always after him to open the windows, to get some fresh air.  Sometimes I had to remind him to brush his teeth before going to bed.  In fact, the first time we had sex, I made him shower before and after.  But there was something—his soap, I think, or maybe his shampoo—that I never could get enough of.

So being the rational person that I am, I decided I might as well listen to some decent music if I was going to stand there sobbing over a stupid nightgown, and being the masochist that I am, I figured our song (Stand By Me by Prince Royce) was as good a choice as any other.

I’d successfully avoided it all week.  It was that song that convinced me not to break up with him in August and even though that was the right course of action at the time, it was not the right course of action this time.  I didn’t want to back slide.  In fact, I’d been doing a pretty good job of keeping busy all week.  I went to yoga on Tuesday, met a friend for drinks on Wednesday, met another friend for drinks on Thursday, went to the art museum for more drinks on Friday and went to not one but two parties on Saturday.

After the handoff though, I couldn’t help myself.

It would have been funny if it were a romantic comedy: me dancing around by myself, alternately smelling and blowing my runny nose into said nightgown.  I even considered burying it beneath my pillow for the occasional sniff but eventually decided, after some deliberation, that only a truly crazy person would do a thing like that.  (And that I, being less crazy than truly crazy, would simply toss the whole godforsaken snot-covered, tear-stained mess into the laundry as soon as our song ended).

The problem with romantic comedies is that break ups are always followed by sexy rebound men and slightly-less-sexy but-nonetheless-decent happily ever after men.  I know I’m not ready for either just yet—probably not for some time—so in my case it’s not funny.  In my case I’m just a crazy person burying my nose in an old nightgown.

20 Responses to “Between Crazy and Comedy”

  1. deenie12

    Just going through something like this myself and… I hear you. On all of it. Try to do whatever you need/want to do and be gentle with yourself. Nothing really makes these feelings any easier except time, but if you can, let yourself recognize the tiny moments of happiness, wherever they are. But… it’s hard. Thank you for sharing these pieces of your story.

    • Kat Richter

      Thanks, Deenie. And sorry to hear you’re dealing with the same thing! I’m debating between going back to be and reading a novel before I have to get ready to go to work or trying to get some “real work” done… I think I just might allow myself the former this morning!

  2. Laurie

    It is my experience that we humans do not deal very well with loss, and that grief accompanies loss, especially the loss of relationships, friends, and loved ones, and that grief is uncontrollable. You can’t help but cry and feel blue right now, and only time will help to heal. Give yourself plenty of time. Be patient. You are an amazing person with a huge heart (think of those little tappers eager for your attention, and your amazing family, and you’ll know what I mean). Someone in your future will be a Very Lucky Person. Meanwhile, know that you are not alone, and we (your loyal readers) understand. Sending you Lots of Love.

    • Kat Richter

      Thanks, Laurie. I do feel a lot better this morning than when I first wrote this post. Not 100% but closer than I’ve been at least. It still sucks but I do know that time will make it easier… that’s the one good thing about have been through this sort of thing before– I know I’ll get through it again.

  3. K.

    Smell is an extremely powerful sense, especially when it comes to remembering past times. You’re doing fine.

    The worst for me is noticing certain things I use on a daily basis were gifts from exes. Like my favorite pair of wireless headphones–got those from an ex. Or a really nice chef’s knife–that was an anniversary gift. On the plus side, whenever I think about that ex I’ve got a sharp object in hand! =)

    • Kat Richter

      Haha– I guess that works! (Although in this case, I don’t actually want to stab anyone.) I wasn’t sure what to do at first with the bathrobe I bought for his place because I was afraid it would remind me of him and make me sad but it’s just too darn fuzzy and comfortable to get rid of, especially now that we’re in for another blizzard here!

  4. Carol

    Aw, Kat, I’m so sorry! I deduced that something was up when I started seeing fewer photos of the two of you on fb. I know these things are never easy, breaking up just blows. I hope you find some hot in the meantime man to help your blues whenever you are ready. Too bad he wasn’t the ONE, but better to figure that out sooner than later.

  5. becky119

    These posts make me want to give you a hug!! I’m glad that you aren’t backsliding though, I’ve done that before and it was just bad for all parties involved (and there weren’t kids to think about). Let me know if you want to meet up for a drink and a hug!

  6. Heather

    The scent will disappear, whether you wash it or not. And it will fade like your current pain. Just maybe not at the same rate.

  7. Chicago-Style Girl

    Wait a minute. No rebound man? You’re not supposed to be ready for the rebound man, in fact you’re supposed to be hilariously un-ready. That’s the only way to ensure they stay a rebound and nothing more.
    Anyway, kudos on staying busy, I know how easy it would be to fall into a trance and wake up three weeks from now grateful to still have a job and friends.

  8. Zak

    Late to the party, and this probably won’t help… other than to perhaps show that what you’re feeling is real (and good) and not at all silly.

    Someone from Canada was reading through old blog posts (I look at my “stats” page occasionally). I randomly clicked a few they had looked at, having almost forgotten them entirely, and I came across a post of my own yesterday:

    I hope I wasn’t wrong to share.


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