A friend of mine wrote recently how she hates break-ups. Especially in the age of social media. She went on to explain that she did not understand how two people who once shared a love that was so intense, that it eclipsed all other things in their lives, only to have be as if they had never known one another at all. Having all evidence that there was ever a couple, erased from existence. Pictures gone, statuses taken down, and mutual friends discarded of. Poof, the love is gone.
I read her status from a few different angles. I placed myself in her shoes and tried to reconcile how she could feel the way she did regarding this issue. In doing this, I birthed an analogy. The analogy is this: If you were to be shot, struck down by a bullet, would you keep that bullet that almost killed you? Now, depending on who you ask, the answer will vary. Some will undoubtedly say ‘yes’, while others will say with unwavering conviction, ‘hell no!’ Neither are incorrect. You see, I believe it’s based upon circumstance, and not the idea of love itself. The idea of love is what gave life to the romance, reality is what took it away.
For me, I chose to erase all ties and tangible proof that I ever knew her, even though, I had known her for seven long years, and continue to know OF her. That night, the night that I came home and found her in bed with someone else, I was confronted with a leveling truth – our relationship had just ended, and my heart had just been broken – again… Love was gone, pain was born. A deep, agonizing pain. The pain only a woman can cause.
Standing there, feeling embarrassed to be in my own home, while in my own room, our room, looking at the man who had replaced me, I felt a punishing sense of shock, of betrayal. This was of course made worse by the fact that I knew him. I knew who he was, he was a cop. We had been on many calls together, me, as a paramedic, and he, the cop, now betrayer, had seen many tragedies together. Now he was both contributing, and witnessing mine. They both sat upright in bed, my bed, staring at me with I what I am sure is their version of shock and embarrassment as well. After having gone through that, I had no problem erasing her from existence, my existence. A task easy to say, and harder to accomplish, considering we are still back and forth in court… four years later…
I get it, I get why pictures of vacations or photos of happy times are deleted, erased from record – it feels like a lie, like a dream. It feels like deception, slight of hand by a master manipulator. Only, at the end of the trick, there is no smiles and speculation, there is only pain and realization, realization that you have been dooped.
I no longer believe in love. The idea of it, sure, but the reality of it, the reality is that love is always selfish, always timed. Love always fades. Red roses and Valentines day cards are replaced with the blocking of messages and last words. It’s the idea of love that we chase, that we crave. Our love, the one we want. The one that often fails. Stats are on my side of this one…
As a man who holds onto the past, or, the past holds onto me, either way, let me tell you something; DON’T, don’t hold onto the past. There is no reason to. I mean, if you meet someone else, do you really think they want to see all the pictures of a how happy you were at one time with someone else? We all know that the person we meet will have a past (meaning having been with other people), but no one wants blatant reminders of it!
Think about it, what’s the first thing friends of those downtrodden, heart broken folks do? Take them out to meet new people! To make them forget about the person that just crushed them. To show them that there is other people out there. Other people to ‘love’ and other people fuck…
No one wants to go home and stare at an illuminated screen of the guy or girl that no longer wants them. No one wants to feel unwanted, unloved, unworthy.
But, that’s just my opinion. Don’t take as gospel, it’s not (although, I think it is). Take it for what it is: people meet, people love, people cheat, and people leave, people are people, and people are selfish, and sometimes, in the age of social media, that means you get deleted. Search, no match found.
So, I guess my answer to my friend is this, why keep reminders of something that makes you feel not good enough? None of us are special. We are just people, on this planet, until we’re not. Photographs fade, memories do not. The end of love is not sad. The end of love, is reality, one we face every day.