A Realization of Important Growth and Closure; My How Far We’ve Come (12/18/19)

Today was my day off, and it was a day where I was surprised by the unexpected closure I received, having dinner with my friend and ex. Now for some context, my friend Liz and I dated my junior year of college, from September 20th 2016 all the way to March 27th, 2017. Even though it was only six months, it was still a relationship that meant a lot to me, and it was my first experience of “love”. When things ended, I took it hard, as you do at the end of a relationship. Her reason for breaking up with me was the simple truth that she didn’t love me as much as I loved her, and that was that. As we sat crying in her car, having one final chat after she had ended things a few days prior, I remember saying how I wasn’t sure if I’d ever find love like this again. I was definitely being quite self-deprecating, but I don’t think that’s surprising, you know? When relationships end, you start lashing out, whether it be at yourself and your inadequacies, or at those around you. I am not a fan of lashing out at other people, so I lean much heavier towards attacking myself and my self worth in these instances; I know it’s incredibly unhealthy, but it’s something I’ve been working to become better at dealing with. This is being a good two and a half years later now, it’s still crazy to me how far I’ve come, and how far I’ve grown as a person. Maybe I’m making things up in my head, but I truly believe we both have become such different people than who we were when we began dating in 2016. And that’s not a bad thing! It’s just that up to this point, I really haven’t been able to compare myself in that way, since I didn’t have a good base point to look at.

Forgive me for rambling on here, but let me backtrack just a bit before diving into what happened, and my realizations during our time eating tonight. So today started with me waking up around 12:30, planning on getting a haircut at long last; I mean my hair has started getting quite shaggy, and I don’t think I’ve gotten a haircut since right before my dad’s wedding. I mean I let it grow out for no shave November because why not, but with it now being December… now I’m just being absent-minded and lazy. Well not today! I mean I still got out of bed pretty late, showering around 2:45 and, after finishing up getting ready, leaving around 3:10PM to catch the next 4 to Manhattan. Now my plan was to get my haircut at 4PM, but worried I would be a bit later, I decided to hold off making an appointment until I was on the train and moving. Unfortunately for me, by the time I got on the train and went to make the appointment, the 4PM and 4:20PM appointments had been filled, and the only other option was the one at 3:40. Now I KNEW I wasn’t going to make it all the way up there in like, 25 minutes, but I figured why not try, right? Well unsurprisingly after transferring from the 4 to the N, and taking that train all the way up to 42nd St. Time Square, it was 3:50PM. I mean it is what is is, right? Now I had been texting Liz throughout the start of the day, just confirming that we were on for dinner, and planning when are where we’d go. I knew she didn’t get out of work until at least 5:30, so I took the excess time I had to kill and checked out a CVS nearby. You see, I’ve been running really low on some acne medicine and moisturizer, along with my multi-vitamins, so I desperately needed to pick all that up. Unfortunately, after checking out the CVS and a nearby Walgreens and coming up empty handed, it was time to hurry on home; I was definitely lacking in the time department.

By the time I had made it all the way back to Crown Heights, it was already hitting closer to 5PM. Now Liz had asked if I wanted to eat at Murray’s Cheese Bar, which I was down with, so I figured just in case there wasn’t much substance in the food there, I should eat something. Side note- I hadn’t eaten at all yet today, so I definitely needed food in my system. After grabbing a six-inch from Subway, I headed on back to my apartment, where I quickly ate my sandwich and got changed into some proper clothes, before it was definitely time to head on back out. By the time I made it over to Murray’s Liz was waiting outside for me, so after a quick hello we headed on into the bar, hoping to get a seat. Unfortunately for us we probably wouldn’t be able to get a seat for a good 30 minutes, so we headed on out and started walking, trying to find somewhere to eat. We ended up walking a good few blocks before stumbling upon, what I think was The Taco Shop. Now earlier on in the day when we were figuring out where to eat, I started looking at burgers, but then I began considering mexican food, because I know from dating Liz that her favorite two food types are burgers and Mexican. We decided to check it out, with snow thinking about coming down again; sorry, the “snow squall”. Genuinely didn’t realize that’s what it was called, but here we are. We got a seat almost immediately, and as we sat down we started catching up a bit. Liz also suggested we just get a couple appetizers, since the entrees were pretty pricey, so along with a mango margarita each, we ordered our food and were good to go. Well, she ordered the food and I went along with it because I was down for whatever honestly.

As we began catching up, going through everything that’s happened the past year since we’ve really talked, spilling some hot tea which I won’t get into because private conversations are private, I dunno, it felt nice. Now I think Michael from even Spring 2018 would have been over the moon getting to grab dinner with Liz again. And don’t get me wrong, I was definitely happy to see her again; however something was different. The two kids who began dating in 2016 while studying abroad had grown into two adults, and we just didn’t click in that way like we did then. In 2016 I worried that I would never find love again, and fretted about if I would ever get over Liz, but tonight truly confirmed to me that I had at last moved on. In these two years I managed to find love again, and even though I lost it once more, the fact that I found it again proves so much; and the fact that I can now recognize how different we are now and know that I’m finally over her was something that filled me with this sense of closure; closure that I think I really needed to experience. All the same, getting to see my ex again and have us just be friends was nice; I mean we chatted about our time abroad in Wroxton, England, re-hashing the insanity that was that semester, and I was happy. I wasn’t pining after her anymore, trying to get her to notice me that way again; we were finally looking at each other on equal footing.

However, the night couldn’t go on forever, and so we paid and I walked her over to the PATH, so she could get back home to New Jersey. After a quick goodbye we parts ways, and as I walked away, mulling over these thoughts of self-growth, I stepped inside a nearby CVS, looking to hopefully grab the acne medicine I’d been looking for all day. Thankfully they did have it, and after picking up everything I needed- except for some air freshener, which I completely forgot about until just now as I write this blog post- I quickly used the stores bathroom before heading out and catching the 1 downtown. Now as I rode the train downtown, transferring to the 3 at Chambers and then the 4 at Fulton, I continued thinking about this, discovery I guess I had after hanging out with Liz. I think I’ve been stuck back in my old ways, pining for the attention of an ex, hoping they’d notice me again like they did previously. I forgot to mention yesterday, but the card I sent out wishing my ex Elle a happy birthday got returned to me, and instead of trying again I just tore it up and tossed it in my trash. Now having this closure with Liz, I honestly felt like I got some closure with Elle in some way, you know? It just confirmed the fact that I can find love again, and I’ll be fine. It’s hard getting over someone you care about, and it definitely takes time, but that’s okay. Maybe someday Elle and I will grab some dinner and catch up on everything that’s been going on, but even if we don’t, I know I’ll be okay. I can’t change how she feels about me, or how she sees me now, but what I can do is stay strong, look at my mistakes, and continue growing. I will find love again, I just have to keep looking.

Heading on back to my apartment, Julian ended up having a girl in his room at the time, so I quickly scurried into my room, and played League for a good bit until she left. After that, the two of us just chatted for a little while before Julian had to get some sleep, and I of course have stayed up playing League and writing this blog post for the last couple hours. Well I’ve been writing this post for a good hour now, League… well let’s say I’ve been playing that for more than an hour tonight. Tomorrow I head back to work, but tomorrow night I actually am going to head uptown most likely, to grab some drinks with my friends Amanda and Rachel for Amanda’s birthday. Now Amanda also invited a couple people who I have zero idea who they are, but as long as Rach is there, it’ll be fine. For now though, I need sleep.

Until next time,

-Michael

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