Next Day’s Note: Um…I was pretty buzzed when I wrote this…so just bear that in mind as you read…
A couple weeks ago I went to the movies with my friend for the first time and he handed me my ticket stub. “In case you want to keep it,” he joked.
And I shrugged it off. “I don’t keep ticket stubs,” I said while both rolling my eyes and pocketing that stub for safekeeping.
A few days later I was going through my pockets, my purses, my wallet searching for that stub because I hadn’t meant to, but I lost it, and that really kind of made me sad.
It made me sad on two accounts. For one, OK, yes, I’m a cornball. I like this dude and I wanted to keep the damn ticket stub in spite of myself.
But it also made me sad because it made me grieve for the part of me that my actual romantic experiences have stomped out: the part that sees an..er..excursion with a guy I like as the potential for something that I would one day want to look back on step-by-step; something I would want to have mementos, tokens, cataloging how it developed.
Life experience has made me very aware of the fact that the way I would ideally like to function in romantic situations is very…ineffective.
See, I grew up on Disney and The fucking Notebook. Everything was special. You kept all that shit because everything was special. You had a little box full of his notes and your ticket stubs and you looked over them when he was away and you swooned. This is the shit that was in my head when I started dating.
And what happened?
That’s what happened to my heart.
Fuckin knocked over.
So I accept that. I can’t deal with these dudes like that–I can’t go into this with an open heart and hopes for what we could be. I have to detach; I have to date multiple dudes at the same time; I have to accept that we could be having a great time together or whatever but he could just be on that bullshit. Or shit, so could I. I can’t meet a dude, decide he’s wonderful, fill my third period notebook with doodles of my married name and sketches of my wedding dress and our seating arrangements. I can’t be debating how many kids we’re going to have mentally and I can’t be naming them or telling myself that he can name the boys.
I get that.
But tonight, just tonight, I am grieving for that girl. I don’t want to give up the idea of meeting someone, being caught up in the flush and treating everything like it’s special. But I must.
Still, I wish I’d kept that ticket stub.