Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Oh, To Feel That Way Again

When Dylan chose Kelly over longtime girlfriend Brenda on 90210, the woman scorned shut herself in her bedroom and put REM's "Losing My Religion" on repeat. Tired of hearing Michael Stipe's whining every minute of the day, Brenda's twin, Brandon asked his sister why she insisted on playing that particular song over and over and over again. Brenda explained to him that that was the song playing in Dylan's car the first time they broke up two summers ago. At the time, she thought nothing would ever hurt that badly. Unfortunately, this new pain cut deeper, burned hotter, and hurt a thousand times more. So she listened to that song hoping to feel the way she did back then, because that pain was more bearable than the one she currently felt. Damn, that Brenda was a GENIUS!
In high school, no one did unrequited love better than me. Hell, even Angela Chase managed to get her lips on Jordan Catalano a few times in the boiler room before he dumped her for not putting out then boned her best friend Rayanne Graff (FYI: I am still campaigning for the return of My So Called Life). But me, I never had that kind of luck. So I yearned and pined for boys who either didn't notice me or didn't want me. I built big dreams in my head and let my heart ache for them to come true. I vented, I stalked, I cried. Oh, it was all so deliciously dramatic. In high school, love is drama, evidenced by the proverbial lunch room break ups and school dance meltdowns complete with all the melodrama a teenager can muster. I figured if I couldn't be part of a real drama, I could always be the star of the theatrics in my head. And what a star I was! Sitting in my room, listening to a pathetic soundtrack that include such maudlin classics as "Glycerin," "You Were Meant For Me" and my absolute fave "How Do I Live," I swore that wanting someone who didn't want me back was the worst pain known to man.
Turns out, I was wrong. Wanting someone who used to want you back, but doesn't anymore is a thousand times worse. I've always said that finding someone you like at the same time they like you is almost an impossible feat. One party usually misses the boat. A few years ago, I thought I managed to accomplish this impossible task for the first time in my life. He liked me, I genuinely liked him. All was swell until he changed his mind. Words cannot describe how badly it hurt. For the first time in my life, tears weren't enough. My heart broke, and I felt it fall apart piece by painful piece. Confusion, lonliness, anger, and an overwhelming desire to forgive converged on me like a tidal wave and the only person who could stop the onslaught was the one who caused it in the first place. At that time, I wished I was still in high school. I wanted to trade the current anguish for the past drama. Compared to the new grief, high school's trials were easy and I desperately needed an easy way out.
It's been almost a decade since I've done the unrequited thing. I don't have the energy to sustain a one sided romance. I'm an adult and adult heartbreak involves real loss. Sometimes they don't love me anymore. Other times I don't love them anymore. And oftentimes love just isn't enough. I can't decide which is worse. But I do know that missing what I never had was more of a sweet agony. And when I'm missing something that I once had, all I want is to feel that way again.

16 comments:

K said...

Oh boy, comparing notes, I'm a moron (hence my oil debacle) and you are BRILLIANT. This was an awesome post, I remember my first stalk in 8th grade--his name was Karl with a K and he wore a ratty flannel and had long blonde hair and the only reason I liked him was because he wore a ratty flannel and had long blond hair and somehow I thought he was a good subsitute for Kurt Cobain...and of course he didn't like me back because I was a skinny 8th grader and he was a sophomore in high school...
I'm sorry for that pain you felt for a real love--the mourning of an emotion that is no longer there has got to be the toughest thing of all...

Chesty larue said...

Wow, your last paragraph was fucking great (excuse my French but I couldn't think of a better adjective)!

But, I will say this. Memory is a tricky thing. As much as you think you can remember how bad or good something felt, you really can't. As cliché as it sonds, time truly does heal all wounds. My highschool source of pain was Leon Steven Neufville. Oh, how many times I listened to "I Never Wanna Live Without You" by Mary J. Blige! In the words of B.I.G., "I let my tape rock 'til my tape popped", and I felt my life would truly end. You think by virtue of "been there, done that" you would be able to deal with the pain more readily the second time around; but pain is pain is agony is fucking pain no matter how you dress it up or who's wearing it.

In college, CEG introduced me to a level of pain I didn't know was possible! I would think back to Steve and assume I must love CEG that much more b/c it hurt that much more. Later on (during my rehabilitation and emotional therapy) I wondered if I had just forgotten how bad it hurt with Steve since 5 years had passed before my second near-death experience! =D I don't think I'll ever know and I don't think future heartache will be any easier to deal with. But knowing I eventually did get over it gives me some comfort and confidence that I can do it again.

Leah said...

Here's the worst: The kind of love where you're both totally into each other but can't be together for some reason beyond your control. THAT is the worst. The other stuff still sucks pretty hard, though.

marrow-from-harrow said...

Far worse, I'd say, is when you're in love with someone obscenely FIT, and they won't, because they're too FIT for you.

So I've been told.

Madox23 said...

I’ve been there! My friend and I were talking about guys in our lives and it dawned on me that every relationship/date or guy I talk to I compare to an EX! It’s crazy when it hits you like a ton of bricks, I was seriously thinking of locking myself in my room and playing “Lover you shoulda come over” By Jeff Buckley on repeat. I remember 90210, I had a crush on Dylan, but dumping Brenda for Kelly was not cool.

~Deb said...

It’s amazing what a break up does to you sometimes—especially if the feelings are one-sided and not mutual. Often enough, a break up can feel almost as bad as a death…sometimes even worst. The other person that broke up with you is still ‘there’---living---choosing NOT to be with you. It hurts more. I hope that makes a bit of sense.

When my girlfriend and I broke it off—I went through such a hard time recovering from it all. I cried so much that I created my own heart palpitations. My eyes were red and puffy, and my cheeks burned from my own tears.

After my psychotic dramatic moments that lasted way too long, I decided to go to God with it. I thought, “What else do I have to lose besides my sanity…”

He heals the brokenhearted, binding up their wounds…~Psalm 147:3

I hope your heart feels better, and that you know God is there to protect you...

Remember, we go through that phase of 'distant distortion'--which is basically remembering ONLY the good times in the relationship. Keep focused on the reality of the relationship as well.

Peace...!

Cece said...

I will leave the details about my 1st unrequited love/staler experience private as it followed me from 8th grade to high school and I would like to leave it there. ;-) I will say that you were for me is one of the crying songs ever!!
PS. Marrow What does FIT mean? Im on a diet so my brain is slow to comprehend these days.

gr8gatsby said...

I love the way you write! Girl, you ROCK! I'm gonna add you to my blog. Hope you drop by sometime! Kisses from east London: xxxxx.

Obese Girl said...

"I can forgive you and soon I'll forget all my shattered dreams
You took the love that you wanted and left me the misery

Now I'm almost over you
I've almost shook these blues
So when you come back around
After painting the town you'll see
That I'm almost over you"
~Lila McCann

webchic said...

I can soooo remember actually telling my best friend in junior high that things weren't quite going so good with this guy and that I was thinking of breaking up with him and getting back together with my ex. She looked at me like she had never laid eyes on me before and said, "Oh that's so cute, you and your pretend thing". It was then I realized I had used my "outside voice" to discuss an imaginary relationship that had become so real in my OWN head that I thought for sure someone else must be aware as well. Pure agony on every level, and a pain I thought nothing could ever equal. Until at 28, twice divorced, I fell madly in love with a married co-worker. Talk about pining away-- I was a complete loon and made myself miserable for months. Fortunately, persistence does pay off on rare occasions-- Cutiepie is mine all mine now (and has been for over five years)-- but it has been a long, hard road for both of us, a struggle I wouldn't wish on anyone. As corny as it sounds, I do believe that there really is someone out there for all of us. Be true to yourself and trust what you really feel in your heart and you won't have to go looking for him, he'll show up where you least expect him-- believe me on this one.

Sober In the City said...

You seem to have struck a nerve with your blogging community. Nothing stirs 'em up like nostalgia. And girl, you write it so well.

Jay said...

Are you me? Seriously. Any of the last 3 posts could have easily been written by me. If I had the wherewithal to string together more than 3 intelligent sentences, that is. My brain is turning to mush.

Lynn said...

I never thought about it in quite this way before. All of it is painful and frustrating, I am very glad that I am through my stalker stages of unrequited love, though. Not sure what it feels like to have the other kind of hearbreak, though.

CrankyProf said...

Oh. Oh, damn. ZDid you nail this post,or what?

For me, it was DAR. My first real, true love. The man I still (after several years of marriage and two kids) wonder about. Occasionally dream about. The FIRST, in every way --who trampled my heart and opened the door to serious heartbreak.

Every time I think I am ove rthis...

Pratima said...

i need u to write a book liz. i swear u'll be instantly famous.

Alicia said...

Speaking of WRITING BOOKS...ahem...