Clouds in my coffee

12 Nov

I wasn’t going to write about this but looking over my posts of this past week, I realized how solemn they all sound. I also realized how difficult posting anything of worth has been this week. I owe you an explanation, and in giving it, I hope that I can resume my regular posts, get this out of my system and move forward.

One year ago this week, my heart broke for the very first time. I didn’t think I would recover from it. This week, though, has not been one of mourning for the one I lost, but rather an introspective look at how far I have come since his betrayal.

This post is not about him. That statement is rather like Carly Simon’s “Clouds in my coffee” though, isn’t it? Her whole song was about her unrequited love, and yet the subject would be vain to recognize himself in her words:

You’re so vain, you probably think this song is about you
You’re so vain, I’ll bet you think this song is about you
Don’t you? Don’t You? Don’t You?

Again, and I mean this free of irony, this post is not about him.

Like Carly, I had some dreams. They were lost when he and I said our good-byes (although he didn’t so much as say those words, just vanished completely from my life). The point is that I was terribly silly to think that things would work — looking back there were so many red flags and signs that I chose to overlook. But being the romantic, wistful dreamer that I was then, I forged ahead, allowing my heart to take over logic’s domain.

Afterward I was a mess. I’d find myself crying over the kitchen sink, gripping the counter and silently pleading for him to come back or at least, at the very least, tell me why he’d left. Even now, knowing the reasons (have I mentioned my penchant for research?), I am still occasionally gripped with the lingering question: why wasn’t I good enough?

I will never know. And I don’t need to know.

In order to recover, I fully immersed myself in the task of living. I did laundry. I painted. I scrubbed the toilet, the sink, the floor until they sparkled and my knuckles were near bleeding from the effort. I put one foot in front of the other and walked the balance beam of treacherous emotions — this was almost worse than the death of a loved one, a pain I did experience about a month later when my beloved grandfather died.

My dreams had died. My confidence was nearly decimated. I made poor choices simply because I valued myself less and didn’t think I could or should demand as much from a partner. I clearly was not deserving, I thought.

Months went by and I thought about him less and less.

I learned to trust again, but that trust was tempered by a weariness that wasn’t present before. I guarded my heart, second-guessed anyone who showed an interest in me, kept everyone at arms length until they jumped through the appropriate hoops and were granted entry into my private thoughts.

I met several men from online forums. Some of them translated into lasting friendships, most of them I do not know anymore. And one of them sneaked his way into my heart.

In the eight months that we have been together, I have thrown many roadblocks D’s way. In fact, and I hope you know how uncharacteristic this is of me, the first night we met I cried while he held me. I told him the whole story, sobbing into his shoulder and then curling away from him while his body embraced mine. He let me cry, encouraged me to cry, recognized my need for it.

I owe much of my healing to him. I don’t owe him my self-confidence — that I regained on my own — but I owe him my recovered faith in people. He showed me that people can be who they appear to be and free of ulterior motives.

I don’t know what the future holds. I can’t guarantee that a year from now I won’t be crying over the kitchen sink again. There is one major difference: I will never allow anyone to define my worth again. I define it. I do it every day.

24 Responses to “Clouds in my coffee”

  1. Libby November 11, 2010 at 10:05 pm #

    I love it. Very interesting to know about you. The painting is so beautiful, also! Very pre-Raphaelite. xoxoLib

  2. Erica November 11, 2010 at 10:08 pm #

    Pink — you're lovely. And you're right; no man is responsible for that. It's just because you're you. And very deserving of the wonderful relationship you now have, seems to me. 🙂

  3. paddlemepink November 11, 2010 at 10:44 pm #

    Thanks for sharing Pink. Sounds like you are a much stronger woman because of it. All I can say about whoever broke your heart is….what a dumb ass.

  4. Kirsten Blessed November 11, 2010 at 11:41 pm #

    Thank you for trusting us with that Pink, it was lovely.Hard, but lovely.I am a widow. My man left on a short business trip and never came home. I had to go to him, kiss him in his box, and watch them throw dirt on his face. I am not sure which is worse, death or abandonment, (they're kinda the same), and I cannot say "I know how you feel/felt".But I know anniversaries.Grace, love, peace, and hope to you my dear friend.Kirsten. xx

  5. Brett B November 12, 2010 at 2:24 am #

    I think no matter how strong you are, that's a painful thing to go through. Your words are wise. Whatever the future holds, you're going to still be the same beautiful person. XO

  6. Michael November 12, 2010 at 5:52 am #

    Pink, you are an amazing, lovely, person. Thank you for sharing as I know it must have been very painful as just reading about your feelings a year ago clutched my heart. You are so right that no one defines your worth but you, not D not anyone. That being said I feel you are priceless, like sunshine, rainbows and the uniqueness of a snowflake. Priceless.

  7. ronnie November 12, 2010 at 6:37 am #

    Pink, thank you so much for sharing with us what must have been such a painful time for you Your lovely Pink and it's his loss not yours.Love,Ronniexx

  8. Scarlet November 12, 2010 at 8:35 am #

    Pink, that was beautifully said. I love this: "In order to recover, I fully immersed myself in the task of living." Wonderful and wise. And the picture is gorgeous.

  9. command November 12, 2010 at 9:02 am #

    Pink, you have a huge heart for people. In our time together I've watched you extend your time and talents to those who take from you more than they give back. I admire that quality in you. Unfortunately, it's a truth that takers break the hearts of givers. I do believe that you have exorcised your ghosts now. I also believe that a catalyst in this effort has been your blog. Where your ghost didn't believe you could write one, I knew you could. You've come a long way, baby!Ghost Buster

  10. Viola November 12, 2010 at 10:25 am #

    Oh, Pink, thank you so much for sharing that. I'm so glad you're happy now 🙂

  11. November 12, 2010 at 10:35 am #

    Thank you everyone. I cannot express enough my appreciation for your words. I had a lot of fear in posting this, but knew that it must be done sometime…a necessary exorcism.I am deserving, something I couldn't believe a year ago. And, not to knock him, but he was a dumb ass, like PMP said, and totally undeserving of what I so eagerly gave him, as so many of you have said. Thank you, thank you, thank you for allowing me to express this here (and for not falling asleep). I feel so much better now — I can breathe.Thank you again.Hugs, Pink(And extra special hugs to Kirsten, whose comment made me cry a little. Anniversaries are the hardest things, especially when you try to forget the ones that hurt.)

  12. Nakedjaebird November 12, 2010 at 3:38 pm #

    I lovet that, I remember going through that, letting someone else dictact who you are and how you feel about yourself. Good for you Pink! I've actually been having quite the week myself 😦 But, perhaps that's a story for later…

  13. November 12, 2010 at 4:09 pm #

    Sending you some hot cocoa, Jae, for your bad week. Hugs, too…never short on those. 🙂

  14. Anonymous November 12, 2010 at 6:48 pm #

    Hey Pink. Thanks for sharing and very brave to lay your soul so bare!Reading your words though, there is no doubt in my mind that you are now a far stronger and confident person than you were a year ago.So perhaps in some strange way you should be grateful he left????keep doing what you're doing!Jxxx

  15. Traci November 12, 2010 at 7:22 pm #

    Thank you Pink for being so transparent. Growth is such a beautiful thing and sometimes can be so painful. I am so happy for you that you have found such a wonderful man and he is more than lucky to have such a lovely, strong, and talented woman like yourself. I couldn't help but tear up at this post just thinking of how beautiful that is. If women who are in bad relationships could only feel what a good one feels like for one day, they would never go back to abusers and manipulators.

  16. babygirl cricket November 13, 2010 at 1:10 am #

    Sorry this is a late response, been sick this week. I can only echo the above comments in saying thank you for sharing something so personal with us. It warms my heart that you met someone who encouraged you to cry and get those feelings out, and has been so wonderful to you. I am proud of you! *Big hugs*

  17. Season November 13, 2010 at 2:50 pm #

    Hurray for the men who sneak their way into our hearts and help us heal! I recognize myself in your story and it makes me want to give my Michael extra hugs and kisses today. Thank you for sharing, Pink.

  18. November 14, 2010 at 10:15 am #

    J, hello and welcome! (I don't think you've posted before but I could be mistaken.) With the advantage of time, I am grateful for his departure — not only for the strength that emerged, but also for finding the true thing instead of the fake. There is a huge difference between what I had then and what I have now (partly because I have changed, too).Hope you're feeling better, cricket! And…thank you! I'm proud of me, too. 🙂 Hugs!Season, yes, give that Michael extra hugs and kisses every day. It sometimes takes something not-so-wonderful for us to recognize the truly wonderful things we've been gifted with. And you and Michael seem like a fantastic match.

  19. Raven Red November 14, 2010 at 10:42 pm #

    When I read this, I saw myself, but I sometimes still find myself clutching that kitchen sink, not always believing that I AM good enough. And how it continues to affect me today – the insecurities about my looks, my weight, the clothes I wear, my shyness (believe it or not!). Old false doubts have been creeping back into my life, and this post has reminded me again – I AM good enough, I AM worthy.Thank you.

  20. November 15, 2010 at 2:56 pm #

    I think everyone has those days or moments or scenarios that reawaken old doubts or insecurities. But knowing, at the core, that you are good and deserving and loved (even if only by yourself) no matter what, really helps see you through those sink-clutching moments. And you are, Raven. I can tell from your writings what a beautiful person you are! Hugs!

  21. Veronica November 24, 2010 at 6:17 am #

    You hold in there girl! You are a beautiful, strong and proud woman inside and out. xoxo

    • Barely Pink November 24, 2010 at 12:37 pm #

      Thanks, Veronica! 🙂

      You know…this post finally exorcised the last of my sadness. It really was a beneficial and cleansing post. Everyone’s comments, like yours, helped me a lot, too.


  22. wordsmith June 9, 2011 at 9:43 am #

    Something that puzzled me, answered. Something I sensed, explained. So glad you have found your way to happiness. I share the view of your friends above, that you are a special person. A much-too-late hug from me 🙂

    • Barely Pink June 9, 2011 at 1:47 pm #

      Thanks, Wordsmith. A lot of what was needed was time and perspective. Having this community of friends and support certainly helped.

      I’ll still take that belated hug, though. 🙂

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