Have you ever seen the movie, Killers? The one with Ashton Kutcher and Katherine Heigel. To the rest of the world it’s just another subpar romantic comedy, but for me it was the movie I watched on my first date. My very first date with my very first boyfriend. I can picture exactly what the two of us were wearing. I was wearing a flowy, bohemian black tank top with a jean skirt, (give me a break I was young.) He was wearing a pale yellow t-shirt that said, “jump if you’re wearing a mini skirt.” Don’t hold it against him. He’s actually the sweetest guy I have ever met. And I remember exactly how he kissed me at the end of the night on my front porch.
This was six years ago. In the end it just didn’t work. Both of us were young and were meant to go on with our lives and experience different things. Six years later the movie is just a happy memory. A moment that I look at with gratitude. They say time heals all wounds. It’s supposed to be this band-aid that you apply to heal your aching heart. When does it stop hurting? When can you finally be exposed to memories and reminders without flinching. When does it get easier to talk about?
I was lucky the first time. There was no dramatic confrontation, but of course that still didn’t mean it was easy. It was a brutal conversation that broke my heart to have but I can’t remember when it stopped hurting. I assume it wasn’t all at once. I don’t think I woke up one day and knew I would be okay. It must have been little by little.
There is no schedule to healing. No day that you can point to on the calendar that will be the end to it all, but in the mean time it unfortunately feels like being haunted by memories instead of feeling grateful for them. When do ghosts of the past pass over to the other side? The side where you can let go of attachments and resentments. Is there no exorcism? No spiritual guide that can burn incense and somehow separate bitter spirits from the happy ones?
At the present moment I’m trying to follow a schedule of healing. Taking comfort in remembering that six years ago I managed to heal, and then I healed two years after that. Because that’s life. It’s this cycle that you are doomed to repeat until you reach some sort of relationship nirvana, if that even exists. It’s really easy to curse the universe when ghosts of the past resurface. I used to feel like a cruel joke was being played on me every time I saw something that reminded me of a past relationship. The same kind of car on the road, a similar name popping up on a list, the reminders seemed to flood in of yet another heartbreak.
Maybe the universe isn’t cruel though. Maybe the powers at be don’t want to haunt me but are slowing trying to make things easier. There are things that still sting. Objects that bring up memories yet to be digested, but I can’t avoid the world because it has the potential to be a haunted house. I’m scared as hell, but I know this house is not a forever state. I won’t always be haunted. Someday I’ll be healed.