Following a break up, I once posted an ex an extra-large bag of peanut M&M’s.
I picked these up on the way out of the airport following a holiday we were suppose to go on together, which I went on with my best friend as I had been unceremoniously dumped prior to it:
This I thought warranted a gift of M&M’s.
I have also texted when told not to text, called when told not to call, looked up solutions online, moved country-wise/snapchatted/facebooked/emailed and carrier pigeoned, as well as posting these obscure chocolatey treats:
I evidently do stupid things for boys.
I would also like to point out I too have been the recipient of awkward-ex post, which I conveniently left on the doorstep and don’t know why I later thought it was a good idea if I did it too, the receiver of many a song dedication in the name of green eyes and blonde hair (cringe) and I did not use a carrier pigeon.
In this post, I want to talk about the car crashes of our lives, the moments of intense embarrassment and tissue overuse, that keeper of allusive sanity and destroyer of all pride, intelligence, unblocked noses and sobriety;
I’ve had them, and most have had them too. These things just happen, but people barely tell themselves how they really feel or think about them, or about the stupid things they do in the aftermath; let alone tell their closest friends, or like me in this instance; tell everyone on the internet. They hibernate in their minds, repairing themselves mentally and physically from what inevitably ends up as a series of messy moments, where your texting speed becomes completely supernatural, and shaving your legs completely questionable:
Love equates to hate surprisingly quickly.
This changes to sadness, eating or starving yourself of your feelings, acts of random awkwardness and embarrassment that will hopefully be forgotten, watching Bridget Jones and How To Be Single on a loop, your friends trying desperately to get you drunk on nights out which you were forced or guilted into going on, getting into bed with your mum at 3am cause you’re sad (god) you attempting to move on and looking like an actual psycho-possibly-murderer to the next man who shows you any form of attention including trying to get you a drink (erm he’s the bartender), an obsessive cramp in your neck from constantly looking out the window to see who is at the door (it’s the postman, calm the f down), your public and utter refusal to go on Facebook but your stalking skills secretly getting to a new level of MI5, your selfie game being on a constant high of ‘MY LIFE IS FUN OK’/POUT, and an unswerving, forced and rather loud declaration that you couldn’t be more ok with this decision, and are in fact the happiest you have ever been in your whole entire life:
Tell your face that.
In my experience you also get cut you off, and they pretend you have never in fact existed, with the classic case of ‘if I can’t see you; you, your feelings and the best mate I promised never to hurt you to on pain of castration, do not exist’. They decide that girls with 5 pairs of fake eyelashes, the moral standing and intelligence of a goldfish, and a dress no bigger than my Nan’s tea-cosy are the road better travelled. Oh and that text you send all of us, the ‘its not you its me’ text:
Can I tell you now, we know it’s not us, its most definitely you because you are in fact a bellend.
Now some breakups don’t tag all the drama along in their wake. Break up’s are sad, and you grieve like the person you loved has actually died or something, and both of you feel the loss in this open and loving way, wishing for a way to repair it but struggling to find a suitable bandage, let alone a cure. This is an example of one of the ideal break up scenarios; beside the imaginary ‘staying friends’ following a split, that none of us can give a real legitimate example of ever actually happening to anyone, and even if you do want to be the best of buds following your split; the thought of them shagging someone else really does put you off a conversation about how his mum got on at slimming world that week.
I am aware at this stage that I should really be portraying myself as the strong and independent Beyonce of my romantic misgivings, but alas that would be an unfair portrayal, and if any men read my blog, they will most probably be laughing at my post-breakup desperado ways, but darling come on; we all know your mummy was the first person you called when that girl broke your heart, so lets be real here; men and women alike, about how break-ups turn us Kate Bush crazy.
The sad version of the split is harsh and kind of poetic, and through the equal heartbreak at least you can rest assured that they did actually feel something genuine for you, and that the love and also pain is mutual, which does make you feel better; though realistically things are harder with that knowledge and you go through the rigmarole of together/not together/together/not together until one of you inevitably dies. Sometimes, you are relieved to be rid of each other, sometimes you both are just over it and mutually decide not to drag this emotional fluctuation out any further, and sometimes things just plain don’t work out. Oh and sometimes, though not in my own experience I think, people cheat; and these people are actual scum. Bye-bye, see you never.
Now, I’m a romantic, a hopeless romantic. Much to the annoyance of said best friend who came on the just-been-dumped holiday with me, where my emotional range went from crying on the balcony to getting drunk and doing the Macarena on a bar. She said my romanticism is commendable but I can tell behind that text message she is giving a major sigh. Romance is lacking in this millennial time zone, and placing romantic dreams of reconciliation above true colours, there is not time for in our busy schedules of being fabulous.
I would point out here that this is entirely from the viewpoint of men being the wrong-doers, as a) I have never actually 100% broken up with someone myself, b) I am so undeniably wonderful that I cannot have been the issue and c) I am a heterosexual example, so cannot confirm similarities of mind with any other sexual orientations, only suggest that it is probably the same because men are nearly always emotionally constipated, and women are nearly always neurotic Facebook stalkers.
Photo from the pool bar on that holiday, 2015, with my gorgeous best-friend who is also a trained assassin FYI, and impeccable company that is preferential to any man, dreamboat or not.
Also, the photographer in the couples photo shoot we mistakenly yet hilariously took part in, obviously thought a high saturation was applicable in the Caribbean.
Equally, I have a terrible memory. So the good thing about being a girl with a short and loose memory is the utter neglect and forgetfulness of the comments given to you in the heat of the argument, the heat of the drama and the heat of the break up. In my case, I forget the words that were given with such haste and abandon that they feel they should become tattooed along my arms, and wrapped around my throat. I replace them with memories, but memories are the same for me. The bad and the ugly fade into the dimming lights of the past, whilst the good reverberate through both my dreams and my mind, setting up camp in my head and refusing to leave until every last tear has been shed. I forget about the bad times, and the words that made me sad once, twice, three times and the times when I just couldn’t breathe, unable to even fill my lungs, feeling the loss so much that physically I was just empty. Obviously there were good times, you don’t spend long periods of time with these people otherwise, so I think of that person with such joy and love, that I can never remember why I don’t see them any more, the exact ins and outs of the argument that concluded with my apologies for their insults and why we never speak.
Just to confirm, there is no reason to say your partner, or now ex-partner, is not having an equally shit time. They will NEVER tell you otherwise and so we automatically assume no matter what the circumstance, they are having a fabulous time without you (unless you are one of my exes who has no time to think that amongst my 3 million texts and M&M deliveries) and are already in the arms of someone cooler/thinner/better with money/thinner/not so obsessed with dogs/thinner/doesn’t post M&M’s.
The age old proverb of ‘getting over someone by getting under someone’ is true in many a case, but if that is what they are doing, when last week they said they loved you; then they are evidently an idiot/you are well shot and oh god, that poor, poor girl with the lazy sod beneath her.
We should really be feeling sorry for her in all of this.
Then, there’s another point of the breakup when the words get harsher as the days stretch out, with roads of insults rolling down the proverbial hill. Words you never would have said to each other when you were ‘Facebook official’. Comments are turfed out that you once told each other were things made of your deepest darkest self-hate, and are now used against you by someone you loved and who loved you back. Irony. You both miss each other, you’re both trying to get used to being apart. Rage makes it easier, particularly if that rage means you’re placing the blame elsewhere. It could be your fault, it could be their fault, it could be both of you. No matter how hard you tried, or even how much you cried, you get pushed down that hill of words to roll in the delight of self-loathing scattered around the ground at the bottom, until you find the will-power and/or the rage to climb back to the top.
From there; I forgive.
It takes a while sure, there are many, many screen shots sent to best friends in the interim that are replied to with impressive immediacy, and you are full to the brim with man-hating pep. Then one day you wake up, and you just don’t reply to them any more; physically or mentally. I forgive myself and forgive that person for hurting me, for hurting each other. Our past being full of such clean moments, that they and it can never be thought of as anything else. I can only have and have had, an ever lasting belief in the very best of people, and sadness at their ignorance of that best. I choose love from the people I know have that best, and when they can’t be that person they combust, and make it your fault that you believed in them in the first place, the last place, and all the places. I see the good in people so much that it clouds the bad; the eternal love optimist.
I fight for relationships, for that best I knew was in my grasp. I mean, sometimes that fight comes out slightly crazy.
75 emails, texts and unanswered phone calls do tend to make a girl appear as such, and at least try to admit defeat. But when I love someone, I want them to know it, and have no mistake that I chose them as the recipient of both my love and my crazy in equal parts.
Now I have a terrible habit, that I’ve only recently realised I subscribe to, which my friends have been witness to for years, and whose advice I have ignored on a daily basis; sorry guys. I treat myself terribly following a break up. I blame myself for everything that went wrong, I question what I did, how I should have changed it, what I should have changed about myself; analysing every moment that took place before that hefty collision. I have also allowed myself to change for another person, to disguise parts of myself or wrap them in a paranoid form of personal shame, never really knowing why, and constantly thinking I wasn’t good enough. This hasn’t always been the case and I have had men in my life who have supported and encouraged me, and I am eternally grateful for that. There are always things that were and will be my fault, none of us are perfect. I will admit I’m difficult, I take ages to get ready, I am emotional, grumpy, rubbish in the morning, dependent as well as independent, realistic, and I cannot for the life of me decide what takeaway I want, and I will take responsibility for my wrongdoings in any relationship.
It’s a difficult concept to consider, that we are shaped by those who hurt us, and that those low moments we’ve had with the people who let us feel at our highest contribute to who we become. I don’t mean in a ‘what to avoid in the future’ way, I mean in a way where we have life experiences and we are grateful for those. We spread our thanks out there, letting go of any rage and appreciating every moment for what it was, and how happy you were. Put ourselves on a pedestal, not them. A lesson learnt universally, is to only change for the better, and never because you feel that you aren’t enough; your flaws are the most beautiful and hilarious part of you. Charitable M&M giving included.
The point of this post isn’t to vindicate the men of my life, because you all know what happened between us, but this isn’t to accuse them either. I want to congratulate my exes, as well as the exes of all of us. I would like it known from me to them, and from all exes to their exes out there;
I genuinely believe I would not be the person I am now without the input of these men in my life; this woman of impeccable looks, talent, personality and of course; modesty. You taught me to fight for what I want, to be certain of my feelings and to not be afraid or hide them. You taught me to love. In the aftermath of these events I along with others have been a mess, but that proves how important you all were, to all of us. No matter what age or what happened; we grow with these people, we choose them to be our partners with whom we imagine a future. They are our best friends, our confidants and our heroes, and these things effect us in a lasting way, regardless of the hurt caused, the insults flung and the impeccable aptitude we all have for crazy-ex behaviour down the local post office and beyond.
Love is special, no matter the end result or how much your friends despise them.
People mess up, fuck up and cock up. We do stupid things following a split and I am not afraid to admit the down right ridiculous things I have done in the name of love. We fight each other to the death for the unaffected trophy, we give second and third chances to people who don’t deserve them, but amongst it all, we have some of the best moments of our lives. We learn to love, love others, and love ourselves. To determine what we want in our lives, and to live with the things that are out of our control. We send peanut M&M’s and 40 emails to our exes, and then quotes and brutal memes to our friends. We use every tissue in the house wiping up our tears, we drink all the red wine, we dance until the sun comes down and we pick up, gather, smile and we move on.
We loved our exes.
They made me who I am,
But they wont ever get a girl like me again.