I could write a dissertation's worth of background information and explanations, but I will spare you 10 years worth of history. In short, I've only ever been in love one time, with one person. In true cliche fashion, I fell in love with them in the seventh grade before I even knew what love was, and stayed in love with them the rest of my life. I've dated others briefly in that time, but never let anyone get too close. I've always kept my relationships very shallow, because (as terrible as it sounds) I've always known going into it that it wasn't going to last.
Well, my love, henceforth to be referred to as "J" (clever, I know) and I have had quite a Romeo & Juliet journey, with various obstacles throughout the years keeping one or both of us from being able to be in a relationship...with anyone, let alone with each other. However, about 3 years ago it had finally seemed like the stars were aligning for us. I truly, perhaps stupidly, thought that we would finally be together. What ensued was pretty heartbreaking, and its difficult for me to think about it. We basically got incredibly close, exchanged mutual feelings of unrequited love for each other, and were on the brink of finally beginning a romantic relationship.
Yet, despite having shared things with J that I'd never even considered discussing with anyone else, and having this feeling of "kindred souls," there was one thing that I couldn't bring myself to disclose, and that was my eating disorder. We had a mutual acquaintance that had struggled with bulimia and gone to treatment, and whom we happened to not particularly like, and J always thought it was funny to joke about. I callously laughed along, and even made some of my own jokes at her expense, all the while telling myself that I could never, ever let my own ED be known.
J had a family history of mental illness, as do I, and it was always an area that we both bonded over but were very sensitive about at the same time. In addition to my struggles with food, I've been diagnosed with various other *things* over the years, some that I believe and others that I don't. One of them happens to be the same thing that J's father suffers from, and because of that, J had/has a lot of negative and painful memories associated with it in childhood. I realized that no matter how much I loved J, it wasn't fair of me to not disclose information about myself that could potentially be a source of very big problems in the future.
So, as I am prone to do, and can't really justify, I completely fell off the face of the earth with no explanation whatsoever. I stopped returning J's calls, blocked their AIM account, stopped all e-mails and text messages...just went from spending at least 4 hours of every day with each other to no contact at all in span of 24 hours. Then I put myself in treatment. After about a month in treatment, I finally got up the nerve to call J and explain myself. When I did, I was met with so much more understanding than I ever imagined. J even dropped everything and traveled 5 hours the next day to visit me. I thought everything was finally going to be OK.
Well, treatment wasn't exactly the magical quick-fix that J had hoped it would be, and once I got out, I think J thought I would be "cured." But as I continued to have daily struggles, and because now I felt like I could finally talk about it, more and more of our conversations came to, at least in part, involve my ED, therapy, meds, etc. Like a lot of brothers and sisters out there struggling not only with ED but other issues, I have been and still am very resistant to medication, which became a really big source of disagreement between us, mostly because of the awful things J's father had done while unmedicated.
We had been growing more and more distant, and finally about a year ago I ODed in the bathroom of a bar and was hospitalized for the third time in about a 6-month period, which was then followed by being Baker Acted to a pysch ward. I called from there crying, asking J to please come visit me.
That one simple word, and I knew that it was over. I realized that this was the straw that broke the proverbial camel's back. When I got out, I tried for weeks to reach J. Nothing...the tables had certainly turned, and it really sucked being on that side of a communication cut-off.
Its now been almost exactly a year since we last spoke. I try not to think about it, and for the most part I like to think that I've at least partially gotten over it. I've moved on in a lot of ways: I no longer spend entire days crying in a fetal position thinking about J, I don't spend hours in bed at night thinking about all the "what if's" anymore, I finally stopped expecting J to have a sudden change of heart and remorsefully contact me, and I've largely accepted that it just wasn't meant to be.
Well, of course once I finally reached sort of a healthy mindset regarding what went down with J, I sign into my e-mail account yesterday to find...what? An e-mail from J. No subject. Just J's e-mail address in the "sender" section, staring at me. After all the progess I thought I had made, just seeing J's name and e-mail address made my heart completely skip a beat. I came close to bursting into tears as my mind screamed "FINALLY!!!!!!"
I briefly fantasized about what it would say, whether or not J was even still in town, if there would be an apology, maybe a peace-offering coffee date? Want to know what it said?
Nothing. An empty e-mail with nothing but a link that wouldn't load. I've come to the conclusion that it was probably just some stupid spam from J's account getting hacked or something. Sigh. I'm such a fucking idiot.
You know what the saddest part is? That I've been dealing with this by stopping all eating, and spending all my free time exercising. The same fucking bullshit that made me lose J to begin with. Somewhere in my twisted mind I still think, if I can just get thin enough, if I can just be pretty enough, if I can just prove that I'm good at SOMETHING...maybe someone will love me again one day.
One of my favorite movies is "The Holiday" with Kate Winslet and Cameron Diaz. I know, its really cheesy. I just love Kate Winslet's character so much, and I know the movie pretty much word-for-word. The title of this post is something she says while narrating. The full quotation is:
For some quite inexplicably, love fades; for others love is simply lost. But then of course love can also be found, even if just for the night. And then, there's another kind of love: the cruelest kind. The one that almost kills its victims. Its called unrequited love.