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An old flame.

2004-07-12 - 11:52 a.m.

Almost everyone has a significant ex in their past. One who you wish things had gone differently with; not necessarily that you wish that youíd stayed together, just that events between you had unfolded differently, that there were fewer mistakes made, fewer feelings hurt on both sides. I am no exception but todayís entry is not about that particular ex. Todayís entry is about someone for whom I probably was that type of ex. I feel vaguely guilty that he wasnít such a significant ex for me, given that I probably was for him. I rarely think of him, in fact.

He and I were together for three years. We started dating the night we met and lived together off and on, constrained by the co-op system at our university. He was a good guy, mild-mannered, cute, nice parents (I used to refer to his family as the Cleavers). We had some arguments but who doesnít?

In the end we ended not with a bang but a whimper. We just sort of petered out. I wasnít in a happy place and couldnít find an outlet to constructively express my frustration. I needed more of a leaning post than he provided. It seemed like we just communicated less and less so the relationship started adding to my frustration, which made me more and more distant and unpleasant and round and round it went until I finally sacked up and ended things. And it was hard, sure, because we still had feelings for each other and there was nothing to point to and say, this, this is the final straw. There was no big blowout and he never did anything mean to me.

So why am I thinking about this now?

A mutual friend sent me a link to his website and he is happy and Iím so happy for him. We didnít keep in touch and so looking at this website makes me feel a little stalkerish, but Iím fascinated (and maybe a little jealous since heís escaped the cold) to see the life heís living now. He has a brand new daughter. Heís taken up carpentry and he and his wife are living in the country and restoring an old house near Austin, Texas, where they moved a number of years ago. They own a truck. They are xeriscaping and composting. He has become the sort of person I suspect he never would have with me as we just didnít bring out the best in each other.

Iím so glad we let things end so that we were both free to find the person who was the right one, the one who completed us and made us better people (though it took me longer and more false-starts than him Ė more on this topic tomorrow).

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