Writing left handed

One Month Later

It’s been one month.  One month—with enough snow to make anybody suicidal— and somehow I’m still waking up every morning, putting one foot in front of the other and getting on with my life.  I won’t deny that I’ve cried myself to sleep about a dozen times, or that I’ve drank way more than any self-respecting human being should, or that I’ve been googling “How to get over a break up” and resorting to self help books proclaiming “ancient Toltec wisdom” but somehow, at the risk of sounding ridiculously new age (I blame the Toltec wisdom), I feel at peace.  I feel good even.  I know now that he did us both a favor.

And I don’t even mean that in the sarcastic sense.  I mean it with the utmost sincerity.  In fact, he gave us both a gift.  He gave us our freedom.

After all, it’s not as though he said, “I hate you,” or “I never loved you” or “You have ruined my life” or “I never want to speak to you again.”  He didn’t say, “You were the worst girlfriend ever,” or “What did I ever see in you?” or “I’ve wasted the past two and a half years of my life on this mess.”  He simply said, “I feel like we are heading towards spending the rest of our lives together and I don’t want to spend the rest of my life with someone who doesn’t accept me.”

No histrionics, no accusations, just the truth.

My response, although invoked as a defense mechanism at the time, was also true: Yes, there are a lot of things I don’t respect about you.

And there were.  I tried so hard to be accepting, to shut my mouth, to stop “suggesting” things, to be okay with the fact that TWD and I vibrated on such different frequencies even though we were, for all intents and purposes, a great couple most of the time.  But I just couldn’t.  His quirks weren’t “cute” to me.  I didn’t find them endearing or adorable.  I found them irritating, even infuriating at times, and although I tried to love him for him, I wasn’t doing a very good job of it in the end.  (It takes two people, after all, not to say “I love you” at New Years.)

So he did what I didn’t have the courage to do.  He said his piece and set us both on the path to better things.  I hated him for it at the time.  Hated him for not wanting to try harder, to go to counseling, to change, but in looking back, after a month of writing, reading, reconnecting with old friends, cursing the universe and finally seeing the light, I realize that it was the ultimate act of self respect— and how can you not respect a thing like that?

15 Responses to “One Month Later”

  1. Christopher Snell

    When a guy makes you the problem for the relationship coming apart, that is a guy with little to no spine. He can’t take responsibility for his emotions and feelings, so he dumps his projections onto you, making you responsible for HIS failed expectations.
    I’m sorry, it turns me inside-out when I hear about guys that haven’t a clue on how to be responsible in relationships.
    My blessings to you…

    • Kat Richter

      Thank you for your kind thoughts, Christopher, although I’m afraid I might have given the wrong impression with this post. I don’t feel that he was being irresponsible at all (although there are always multiple truths and multiple interpretations for every situation I suppose…) the main thing is I feel a lot better and a lot better about the break up in general.

  2. becky119

    Glad to hear you’re keeping your head straight. Sometimes it just doesn’t work and it’s a good thing you guys came to this conclusion before purchasing a home together. On a more selfish note – now that you’re no longer together there have been a lot more posts which I always look forward to!! Is that a terrible thing to say?

  3. Josh Loomis

    This kind of hits me where I live. I’m heading for a divorce (my second one) and in this case, it’s not a matter of “I don’t love you” or “I never want to speak to you again,” it’s “we are heading in two different directions, and the longer we try to make this work for the rest of our lives, the more we’re going to resent one another and neither of us wants that for the other person.” I respect my wife too much to try and force her into something she might not want, and thankfully, she seems to have a similar respect for me. We’re making things amicable and friendly for as long as we can, but in the end, we’re going to go our separate ways, and wish each other well for the new horizons ahead.

    • Kat Richter

      Goodness, sorry to hear that Josh! Sounds like you’re going about it with the right attitude though, as right as one can be in these circumstances at least. Best wishes and smooth sailing ahead hopefully!

  4. hah5

    mazing!! My own thoughts after a bad break up after almost three years of the relationship. It’s all here written in plain script. I completely adore you for posting this. It kinds of allow me to better accept the past event and move on with my life…

  5. Amanda Sylvester

    I too have deffintly googled how to get over a break up. Your doing great Kat and its super cool to think about the adventure ahead of you 🙂

      • Jerseyite Lurker

        Went to the local library…looked up subjects in the Reader’s Guide to Periodical Literature…put the reel on the microfilm machine…plugged in dimes to make copies…

  6. casespace

    To me the suggestion that I didn’t accept a significant other would really hurt. It’s a statement that indicts. I’d think “How long have you felt this way?” So when I read the words, I thought “Ouch!” I feel sort of like one of the other commentators above. Did he at least acknowledge his own faults in the relationship? Perhaps not communicating enough? By the way, my feeling is in some way or another we always ‘accept’ the other person in a relationship, even when it doesn’t seem like it. Maybe I’m hung up on the word.

    You’re hanging in there, love. Hindsight is always 20/20. I think you’re seeing now, and you’re accepting now that you just didn’t work together. You’re already beginning to look back and say, “that was actually a favor.”

    By the way, I’m still trying to figure out Friday. I will text you if I’m available.

    • Kat Richter

      Yeah, I get what you’re saying. And when you put it that way, I kind of agree. (In fact, it makes me a bit mad at him, which is not necessarily a bad place to be when you’re trying to get over someone.) Let me know what you decide for tomorrow night!


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