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Putting out the fires
March 21, 2013 11:09 AM   Subscribe

We have incredible sexual attraction and were best friends to boot, but nothing good will come of this. How to kill it off?

We had incredible sexual chemistry unlike anything either of us had ever experienced. Something about him pinged every trigger I had, and vice versa. We were fantastic friends to boot but just plain miserable as a couple. We brought out the meanest, pettiest, fightiest parts of each other and we split up rather than stay in a beautiful-but-terrible, drama filled, love-is-madness-and-pain relationship. The breakup was amicable and I carry a lot of fondness for him and genuinely hope he finds someone who makes him happy.

He makes a living from the hobby that we both share, while I am not making money from it, I am at a semi-pro level and it is a passion that keeps me physically fit, mentally challenged, and personally fulfilled. We've both been working hard to maintain No Contact, I'm even moving apartments in part to reduce the chances of running into him in the neighborhood, but avoiding each other in the long run requires either moving out of state or one of us accepting serious setbacks in a major aspect of our lives.

I'm currently seeing someone else who is a much better (and healthier) fit for me. We have a lot of fun together and it's working out well. I heard through a mutual friend that he is also in a relationship and I honestly wish them the best. He had ceased to appear in my thoughts and my rational brain was back in charge, or so I believed.

A few days ago I ran into him in a chance encounter and the tension was sizzling. Lightning bolts fell from the sky and there was drunken euphoria on both sides. We hastily retreated to No Contact territory. Seeing him and feeling that familiar chemical cocktail of lust coursing back into my loins was a serious shock. Falling back into something with him would be a one way train to Bad Things, and I refuse to be a victim of my own hormones.

Even meticulously planning hobby events around each other's presence and studiously avoiding parts of town we'll still have the occasional sighting. What else can I do to kill this off? I'm already moving further away. I've put heavy restrictions on a serious hobby that represents an incredible amount of effort, dedication and commitment. I'm avoiding him on social media. Despite my fondness for him I've given up any real hope of remaining friends. I'm in a new, healthy, and happy relationship. I thought I was disentangled but was laughably mistaken, and I fear making the same mistake again.

Should I hire someone to dump cold water on me whenever I see him?
Enter witness protection?
Wear a shock collar and zap myself at the first sign of a libidinous thought?
How do I keep my brain in control?
More importantly, how do I know when it really is and when I'm deluding myself into thinking it is?
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (24 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
Remind yourself endlessly of all the Bad you left behind and all the Worse you would be jumping into by stupidly going back.
posted by Michele in California at 11:16 AM on March 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


Should I hire someone to dump cold water on me whenever I see him?
Enter witness protection?
Wear a shock collar and zap myself at the first sign of a libidinous thought?

I can't tell if you're joking here or if you're really overly dramatic.

My guess is you're really overdramatic. And you're really overdramatizing your relationship.

Lightning bolts fell from the sky and there was drunken euphoria on both sides.

Come on.

What you should do is go no contact, reread what you wrote here and see how completely over-the-top you are, and consider ending your current relationship, because this isn't fair to your new guy at all.

And find a new place to do this hobby and stop running into this guy.
posted by kinetic at 11:23 AM on March 21, 2013 [18 favorites]


How long ago was this breakup? Can you email a mod and have them update? Because if it was last month then this will pass, but if it was like a year ago then this is getting into 'you might need mental help' territory.
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:24 AM on March 21, 2013 [4 favorites]


Additionally: you seem like you may be unconsciously feeding your desire for this guy because you LIKE the way it makes you feel. You LIKE the fact that he makes you crazy. And that isn't healthy at all.
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:26 AM on March 21, 2013 [22 favorites]


There's gotta be more than one place/way to pursue this hobby, surely.

If not, then I'd suggest just rolling with whatever the feelings are, until they go away (and they will). Which is what everyone has to do after a breakup. As long as you don't act on them, no harm done.
posted by Salamander at 11:27 AM on March 21, 2013


I agree with kinetic and ablazingsaddle, you are dramaticizing like whoa, and as long as you keep thinking and talking about it in such extreme over the top ways you are going to find it extremely difficult to ever disengage. You may "refuse to be a victim of [your] own hormones", but damn if you aren't being a victim of how you are choosing to think and describe this. What you wrote here frankly reads like the back of a pretty badly written romance novel, but it ISN'T a novel. It is your LIFE! I get it, the melodrama makes things feel more exciting and interesting, but it is really counter-productive at the moment and you are taking it to an unhealthy level.

It is time to take all your superlatives and melodrama out of it.

Write out exactly what your relationship was like, but don't use any dramatic big descriptions. No "sizzling" or "lightning bolts" or "chemical cocktail of lust coursing back into my loins". I don't think you are safe to use ANY descriptors beyond "good" and "bad" at this point because you seem wholly and enthusiastically obsessed with the drama of it. Write it as though it were written by a vulcan or as if it were for a scientific study. Get some cooled down perspective on this. You frankly may find it too hard to take the melodrama out of it, so talking to someone else (yes, therapy) may be what you need to gain some rational persepctive.

I wish you luck. I'm someone who descends in to melodrama from time to time too, I know it can be hard to break out of but I assure you that you need to if you're ever going to move on from this.
posted by PuppetMcSockerson at 11:49 AM on March 21, 2013


I disagree with those that are telling you to enforce the no contact. Don't set him apart as a forbidden fruit. He's just a guy. See him with his girlfriend, hanging out, losing his phone, being a person. It'll fade. Imagine him sitting on the toilet when you see him.
posted by fingersandtoes at 11:50 AM on March 21, 2013 [4 favorites]


I'm just wondering if you did anything to try and save the relationship rather than giving into the drama? You love him, you like him, you want him, you have interests in common...why aren't you with him? Why are you settling for the nice, healthy guy who clearly isn't going to be enough for you in the long run? Did you two try to work through the pettiness and fightiness like adults, rather than assuming great love must equal great pain? Maybe you should think about trying to just bring out the best in each other, and the thrill that comes with that, rather than assuming passion must equal volatility. Being dramatic isn't a bad thing per se, and doesn't mean you need mental help, but maybe you need to channel it better. You're fighting against something you want - why not go with it but stay in control of it next time?
posted by billiebee at 11:53 AM on March 21, 2013 [8 favorites]


You are way too wrapped up in and excited by the drama you have created around this issue. All this is is an ex that you still have feelings for, try to avoid making it the plot of your own personal movie about forbidden temptation. You could also focus on that whole new relationship you have or let the new guy go for his own sake.
posted by jnnla at 11:55 AM on March 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


IME, narrative is the problem. You're narrating this as "we had something really special, implicitly because we are special, and there's an element of fate or inevitability in it", which is an exciting, interesting and coherent narrative. You don't have to be some kind of drama queen to narrate life events this way.

When you think of him, try switching your mental story to "we dated, it didn't work out and now he is with someone else; everyone in the world has a couple of 'instant chemistry' experiences, it's not that special". Repeat this until you start feeling sort of flat and blah, and then think about something else. It's a drag, but it's the only way.

I add that I personally have only ever had "instant chemistry" with people who were bad for me. My theory is that for some of us, the "I know this person is bad for me" piece is part of the chemistry.
posted by Frowner at 12:00 PM on March 21, 2013 [17 favorites]


Well, of course it's dramatic. That's what makes it "passionate".

Putting aside the lecturing for a moment...

You hear the story about the woman who was a civil rights marcher who finally managed to quit smoking by telling her friend that she would donate $5,000 to the KKK if she ever smoked again? It worked.

Think of a cause you're passionate about, then promise yourself you'll donate money to the cause's most virulent opponent if you mess around with him. Example: if gun control is important to you, give money to the NRA.

I think there's even a website that will hold donations in escrow for you. Can't think of it just now.
posted by dry white toast at 12:36 PM on March 21, 2013


Here is a helpful exercise:

Picture your bedroom door as clearly as you can... What colour is it? Which side is the door handle on?

Now picture your favourite restaurant. The walls, the floor, the tables, the sounds, the ambience... Now picture the chair you usually sit in. Now picture him sitting in it. Now picture him sitting in it PICKING HIS NOSE really grossly!! Watch it in slow motion!
This is hard to do but if you are committed to your friendship picture him picking his nose on a regular basis, it takes mental discipline but I swear it works.
posted by dinosaurprincess at 12:49 PM on March 21, 2013 [3 favorites]


I think people are being overly harsh. Dramatic feelings are real! During a thankfully brief unwell/despairing period, my chest actually started to hurt at one point and I was like, What the fuck! I totally thought "heartbreak" was a bullshit literary cliché with no experiential referent! Nope. So when you talk about lightning, or reference with tongue in cheek needing an electric collar-- totally get it.

As others have said, though, no contact. Think of it like an addiction; heroin might do something mighty powerful for you, and it might make you feel good, too, but that sure doesn't mean it's good for you. And nobody, I think, who's succeeding at kicking a heroin habit is saying to themselves "oh, I'll just shoot up and maybe nothing at all will happen this time!"
posted by threeants at 1:09 PM on March 21, 2013 [4 favorites]


Listen, you parted on good terms and it was jarring to see him after not having any contact. Give yourself a few days to calm down. Think about all the shitty times you two had in Drama Town. Then forget it and focus on the new guy, who sounds like a much more stable partner for you. Trust me, I have had the drama relationship and the non-drama. The latter is built to last.
posted by futureisunwritten at 1:47 PM on March 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


If that's overly dramatic, put me very firmly in the Drama Queen category. I have had relationships with sparks of that sort. My above suggestion works: Just remind yourself endlessly of all the bad stuff that is part and parcel of this relationship. You cannot separate the two. So instead you should try to very strongly associate them until you react with hives to the Excitement!!!

Years ago, I kept a file on my computer titled "The Why (guy's name) is an Asshole" File. I eventually got over him and moved on. I currently know a different someone whom I think is Smokin'. He has also been an unremittent asshole to me. Those fires are quietly dying.

I knew one man who was very, very respectful of me and I was crazy about him. It felt safe to be crazy about him. There wasn't all kinds of drama, even though it was a super steamy relationship. I want another relationship like that. I am so done with putting out the fire with gasoline. I have been burned enough. It really, really cools my jets to remind myself that lightning strikes start forest fires, black smoke interferes with my breathing and I have respiratory problems to begin with, etc.

Put on endless loop until my reaction is "Oh. It's you. Meh." (crinkle nose like I smell icky smoke) instead of "Oh! It's You!!!!! Excitement!!!!!!!"
posted by Michele in California at 1:49 PM on March 21, 2013 [4 favorites]


I've had great success in one relatively similar situation with the whole "think of something repugnant" angle: in my case this image of a pig's head was spontaneously super-imposed over my ex-lover's head as he approached me; my jelly legs instantly firmed up and my heart slowed down. But we hadn't split up amicably, he'd been a jerk.

You could also read Ephraim Kishon's Oh, Oh Juliet for a funny, but sobering account of Romeo and Juliet "x years later".
posted by miorita at 2:04 PM on March 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


How do I keep my brain in control?

One little piece of this is that rules to control your thoughts will inherently backfire. We don't have some mental scalpel that can just remove thoughts about X. So a control-your-brain strategy like "I must not think about X, I must not think about X" is guaranteed to achieve nothing, and also to hit part of your brain like "blah blah blah X! blah blah blah X!"

The attitude you want instead is, it's fine for thoughts about X to pop up sometimes. You have a brain with one piece that's currently built to think about X, and it'll get triggered sometimes and that's fine. Other pieces of your brain will pop up a million other random things in any given day, some more distracting than others. But you're a grownup and you've made a thoughtful decision about how to live your life, and chewing over thoughts about X seems to interfere with the things you care about. So when thoughts about X pop up, you don't need to yell at yourself -- you can just say, "meh, thanks brain, but not what I was looking for. Anyone else have a contribution?"

Let the thoughts come, let 'em go.

Once you start paying attention to this process, you might discover that you don't want to let the thoughts go -- that when you try to let thought X slip away, the thought-X part of your brain hits you with a spike of painful emotion. "No, you're losing something!" Now here's the key: it's easy to make that bad feeling go away by thinking about thought X again, the way it wants. But if you flinch away from a painful emotion that way, that's when you lose control and your brain's thought-X circuit gets to be in charge. If instead you embrace the painful emotion, pause for a second and just be open to feeling it, you'll find that it's one of the most alive moments of your day and you'll be the one in charge. You'll be free to go on, despite thought X, as an adult, doing the things you care about.

As a bonus, turning toward those spikes of negative emotion and listening to them, instead of flinching away from them, will tell you exactly what you're losing by giving up thought X. So you won't have to listen to us guess about what's going on in your head -- you'll just know.
posted by jhc at 3:15 PM on March 21, 2013 [3 favorites]


I don't think you are being overly dramatic. It's the great sexual chemistry that you have with each other that is standing in your way of getting over him and making that relationship seem more special than it was. I get it. When you have that kind of sexual chemistry with someone, it kind of knocks you over and makes you think it is fate or destiny or you are soulmates - it feels THAT special. I get it. It sucks that things can be so awesome, you just click sexually and as friends - but you just can't make it work in a day-to-day kind of relationship - you make each other miserable. THAT is what makes it so hard, the hot/cold part - how can someone who makes you feel so good make you feel so bad? It would be so much easier for you if the sex/friendship was crap. But it wasn't. Chemistry can be a little bitch like that.

The thing is you really just have to let go and move on. This relationship will never work out the way you want it to. Sexual chemistry can only go so far. I know it sucks to hear, but it really won't work. I'm sorry. My quote for getting over my similar relationship was something like, "getting over something is like playing on the monkey bars, you have to let go in order to move forward." I liked the childlike/playful image that quote evoked, so that worked for me as my mantra. I HAD to move on and you do too. Things are not going to change between you, there won't be a magic moment when you both realize, "OMG! This is what we've been doing wrong, let's change and be together!"

You are spending way too much time planning things around him. Stop doing that. Just live your life and do what makes you happy. Odds are you will run into ex-boyfriends again, no matter how hard you try to avoid them. The amount of time you are giving this is not healthy for you at all. So what if you run into him and he gives you goosebumps? It happens. This time it surprised you at how it made you feel physically, but that is just what your body is used to when you are around him, pheromones and all that - it will fade in time.

Lastly, take it from someone older than you - you don't want to waste your life with this kind of relationship - you can't look for someone else to have awesome chemistry with if you're still holding a torch for him. And despite you saying you're happy for him moving on, a reading between the lines of your question reveals you're still carrying that torch. Put it out! Play on the monkey bars and have fun!

Good luck!
posted by NoraCharles at 3:16 PM on March 21, 2013 [3 favorites]


[folks - answers directed towards the OP don't be fighty towards other folks, thanks.]
posted by jessamyn at 3:31 PM on March 21, 2013


thought I was disentangled but was laughably mistaken,

Just about everyone thinks this when they see their ex again after a long time. But you're catastrophizing going down a slippery slope based off of nothing particularly meaningful. Nothing has actually happened.

In your case, how can you really be over someone who dominates so much of your decision making? How long ago did you break up? Maybe you need more time. And space. And reminders of how miserable you once were together and how much happier you can be apart.

I am more than mildly curious to know what the hobby is, mostly because this kind of question revolving around sharing/splitting a hobby (that no one can give up) with an ex comes up so often around here, but not in my real life.
posted by sm1tten at 5:19 PM on March 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


I had one of these, and did two things:

1. Whenever I was hanging out with hot friend, I'd ask after the wife and/or kids whenever I thought we were getting off track.

2. I acknowledged that at least part of my attraction was projection. Real chemistry was there for sure, but there was a lot of fantasy fuelling that, a lot of fantasy based on ideals and needs that originated in me. Owning that really helped me keep the IDEA of this person I was attracted to as an abstract, and helped me to divorce the sexy fantasy from the real person.
posted by L'Estrange Fruit at 9:21 PM on March 21, 2013


1. Whenever I was hanging out with hot friend, I'd ask after the wife and/or kids whenever I thought we were getting off track.

This is actually a really good idea. I'm a single female, and I do this with male friends if they show an inkling of veering in the wrong direction.

I am more than mildly curious to know what the hobby is, mostly because this kind of question revolving around sharing/splitting a hobby (that no one can give up) with an ex comes up so often around here, but not in my real life.

Ha, snap! I have been wondering exactly the same thing...and also thinking, wow, people must have way more intense hobbies than I do!
posted by Salamander at 9:55 PM on March 21, 2013


just chill out a bit and give it some time. try not to be a drama llama, okay? you will get through this. moving out of state seems a bit much, imo.
posted by wildflower at 11:28 PM on March 21, 2013


First off -- I read this AskMe and most of the responses last night, and, as is often the case,I sortof am annoyed by how different I am from so many who populate this site, people who can see clearly even when blinded, and/or they just don't get blinded, and don't get blind-sided, and they're able to make remarkably sound responses *without much fanfare* to pieces of life that eat me alive.

The reactions of many from here are just so measured.

I get this image of precise measuring cups, and one of those sets of spoons, each of exact size: add this much Willingness to be in said relationship, and this many pieces of Giving, wait for that many pieces of Receiving before adding in even the smallest spoon-ful of Your Heart, which only gets added way late in the mixing process. There are of course lots of other ingredients but maybe you catch my drift; only the easy to find, less expensive ingredients are added at the start, with the real goods mixed in only after the rest has been at 150 degrees for a long while, timed -- of course -- with a very accurate timer.

Does any smoke come off of it at all when it's brought toward a higher heat? And, if there *is* any smoke, at all, if the smoke detectors go off at all, why, chunk the whole damn thing down the drain; only continue to add anything if there is no smoke but rather a healthy aroma coming from that oven.

It's like everyone here has taken these cooking classes, and they stick absolutely to The Recipe, down to the smallest sprinkle, and they have precise timers and stuff.

I do not own a cookbook. I've bought them, and had them, but they always seem to have disappeared when it's time to try to cook something up, I'm standing here with all these ingredients, seems it's mostly luck if I get something tasty, or nourishing, or what-have-you. Most of the time it ends up that there's shit all over the kitchen, I've got a big mess to clean up, plus I'm still hungry as I wash down the walls and sweep and mop.

Those dopey love songs on pop radio, where love just falls on someone, where it just happens to them and they're stumbling and tumbling under its weight and its sway, sometimes I look in the mirror and those songs are in that damn mirror. Most annoying. I no longer act upon all of it thank god but oh man, do I want to act upon it...

I'm 58. Many learn about this shit in junior high school. I don't like them.

~~~

I just re-read The Godfather, one of the stories woven into the whole was of Michael Corleone seeing Apollonia and getting hit by what was called in Sicily "The Thunderbolt" and he's gone gone gone, he's just got to have this girl, it makes no sense and he can clearly see it yet he's still got to drink a bottle of wine each night to be able to sleep.

Books have been written about this shit. Songs in their millions. Legends, myths, maybe your grandparents, maybe mine. Why else would anyone get married, why would anyone take those vast risks were they not temporarily insane? They wouldn't.

~~~

I said all that to say this -- I damn sure do understand your plight, and so do lots and lots of other people; they just don't cough up the five bucks to come here and pontificate. Quite frankly, you're doing great in the face of it; you're in someone else's arms and able to give them your love and receive theirs, you're able to do the right things, you've not untied yourself from the mast even as you hear the sirens wailing. You're strong.

~~~

We had incredible sexual chemistry unlike anything either of us had ever experienced. Something about him pinged every trigger I had, and vice versa. We were fantastic friends to boot but just plain miserable as a couple. We brought out the meanest, pettiest, fightiest parts of each other and we split up rather than stay in a beautiful-but-terrible, drama filled, love-is-madness-and-pain relationship. The breakup was amicable and I carry a lot of fondness for him and genuinely hope he finds someone who makes him happy.
Guy by name of Harville Hendrix wrote some books about this, how sometimes we seek out those who show us the worst in ourselves so that it can be brought to the surface and healed in the others presence. And Michael Ventura wrote a great essay entitled "Why Love Sucks", he states that we go to/for love for safety, for peace, for adventure, for family -- for any number of reasons or maybe none at all -- but Love doesn't give a rats ass why we come there, that once we get there we get shaken down, and all of our broken pieces rise to the surface, to be healed in that love. A great essay, Ventura a great writer, he pretty much says in an essay what Hendrix drones out over two books. So anyways, none of this makes any logical sense, and it's sure not intuitive, but I think he's got something. I've a copy of that essay somewhere, let me know if you're interested.

Also, there's a French (Truffaut) movie, The Woman Next Door, maybe early 80s, Gerard Depardieu and Fanny Ardant star. It's not a pretty movie but I do believe it's honest and human, too, and it's no hollywood ending, no happy music swelling, no flower petals falling from the sky; it's more about what it's really like when obsessive love is let run. Hell of a movie, or so I thought. You wanna see what happens when you move next door to your heartache? Watch this flick.

He makes a living from the hobby that we both share, while I am not making money from it, I am at a semi-pro level and it is a passion that keeps me physically fit, mentally challenged, and personally fulfilled.
A yoga practice, right? And he's a master, he's a big piece of the heart of yoga in your area. I can't think of anything else.

We've both been working hard to maintain No Contact,
Good.

I'm currently seeing someone else who is a much better (and healthier) fit for me. We have a lot of fun together and it's working out well.
You are lucky to have this, not everyone can step out of one thing easily and gracefully into another; I'm thinking here of my mirror again.

A few days ago I ran into him in a chance encounter and the tension was sizzling. Lightning bolts fell from the sky and there was drunken euphoria on both sides. We hastily retreated to No Contact territory. Seeing him and feeling that familiar chemical cocktail of lust coursing back into my loins was a serious shock. Falling back into something with him would be a one way train to Bad Things, and I refuse to be a victim of my own hormones.
Yep, here's the sappy love song part, here's the sirens singing their hearts out to you, hoping to get you to come close so they can eat you. And you're right, you've called it right, it *is* a chemical cocktail, and the very first thing that chemical does is insist that this time it's for real, yes, yes, every time in the past you've followed this down you've got hit by a bus but *this time* it's going to be different. Tells you that this is The Real Deal. Hell of a drug.

Even meticulously planning hobby events around each other's presence and studiously avoiding parts of town we'll still have the occasional sighting. What else can I do to kill this off? I'm already moving further away. I've put heavy restrictions on a serious hobby that represents an incredible amount of effort, dedication and commitment. I'm avoiding him on social media. Despite my fondness for him I've given up any real hope of remaining friends. I'm in a new, healthy, and happy relationship. I thought I was disentangled but was laughably mistaken, and I fear making the same mistake again.
Ever see a hot-air balloon being inflated? They've got these big honkin' gas burners pointed into the balloon, it's blowing up and lifting off, it's inevitable that it's going to lift off what with all that hot air being dumped into it. I try to use that, the balloon is that chemistry, I see myself running 'round that balloon with a sharp-ass machete, tearing rents into it, all that I can to keep that bastard from lifting off and floating away, because I know from grim, gruesome experience that it's going to drag my lame ass with it when it lifts and flies off on its bumbling way toward wherever the damn winds carry it. Man.

All too often I've been dropped into the thorns, brambles, desert thickets. Drowned, and more than once, dumped into icy seas.

Should I hire someone to dump cold water on me whenever I see him?
Nope, we're in charge of our very own cold water dumping. Though friends, mentors, therapists, sponsors -- these people can sometimes see when we can't. Beware that one friend who doesn't know shit about love chemistry, though; you'll want to listen to that voice, I sure hope you won't.
Enter witness protection?
You've taken great precautions. You're doing great. You've entered whatever it is you need enter, now just still have to use the protections.
Wear a shock collar and zap myself at the first sign of a libidinous thought?
You're going to think them, these thoughts, and they're going to think *you*. In time, it'll still be bittersweet, much more sweet than bitter.
How do I keep my brain in control?
When those chemicals are in your veins your brain is not in control. Control your actions, your thoughts are just clouds passing over.
More importantly, how do I know when it really is and when I'm deluding myself into thinking it is?
Time. The chemistry is so damn deceptive, it really does tell us that we really are set this time, that it's for real. Hollywood hasn't got any special effects that come near to that chemistry. Only over time will it come clear if it's for you or not. Meanwhile, you've got to step close enough to that person for that amount of time, to see how it resolves, and sometimes you're going to get cooked, you're going to get into what you're into now.

~~~

I thought considerable about Laura yesterday, which isn't unusual, truth be told. It's more that sweet thing by now, much less the hurts in it; she really does need to stay married, and Paul, he's such a great guy, *I* want to marry him myself, she ought not to consider anything else, and she's not. But I think of her. I like most to think of her on wet rainy nights as I drive here in Austin, late late, coming down toward the capital, looking down Congress Avenue through rainspattered, foggy windshield, the traffic lights are most all set to yellow flashing caution lights though there's plenty of other colors, too, and looking down that direction, it's like four miles of lights down that street, it's like one of the night paintings of the pointillists, it's one of my favorite sights in Austin, it's so beautiful, I'd love to share that with Laura, hold her hand and talk, hear her voice, her laugh. I told her about that, told her the last time we spoke, which had better be the last time we speak. She knows I love her and I know she loves me, we all of us -- including Paul -- know that Paul is the better for her. Bittersweet, yes, but more sweet anymore, mostly.

~~~

I think you've got to take risks with your heart sometimes. If you want the goods, you've got to use the cards in your hand, make your bet and call their cards. Fuck ingredients. Sometimes it's card games. Play what you've been dealt as best you can. Hope. Cross your fingers. Wear your lucky shirt.

And you did that. And it was a bust. And you've walked away, and walking tall and straight. He knows you love him, you know he loves you. Let it rest. Though you've taken a lot of flak here for being human, the fact is that you're walking tall and straight in a direction you need to walk. Personally, I think you're doing great.

Good luck.
posted by dancestoblue at 11:50 AM on March 22, 2013 [6 favorites]


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