Confusions and Clarifications

Disclaimer: This post is from the archives, and may not represent the current views of the author. It also may not be at all interesting to read. Continue at your own peril!

Well, Melissa and I are no more. I just thought I’d hurry up and get that out of the way, since it’s going to be repeated all over the place anyways very soon. Last night was definitely a night out of the ordinary, and though I’m not sure exactly what I’m feeling right now, I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me start this entry with the retelling of the day before last.

On Friday night, I worked. Things were fairly normal, but busy. There was a display set up outside the theatre with this group of people trying to get others not to go see Saw 2. They said that it promoted smoking. The sheer idiocy of that campaign made me laugh. Here is a movie, rated 18A for gory content, which shows a bunch of people being brutally murdered by a perverted, sick madman who sets up impossible traps for them, and these people are worried about the guy who lights up a cigarette. Besides, of all the movies which depict smoking that they could have chosen to stand up against, they choose the one with the guy who’s dying of cancer. Uh, earth to stupid people. It’s not really “promoting” smoking if they’re showing a guy dying of cancer because of his bad smoking habits. That’s really just saying, “Hey kids, don’t smoke, or you’ll end up as a sick, perverted lunatic who goes around kidnapping people and showing them to their deaths. He’s sickly and weak, and he’s dying of cancer because he smokes!” Yeah. Not exactly a role model that many people would follow anyways.

Anyways, after work, I walked outside the theatre, and there were my friends: Melissa, Kristin, Michelle, Jordan, and Holly. Melissa said that they were hanging out at her house, and that I could come if I wanted. So I did. I went home and got changed, then headed over there. They had made a movie while they were at the mall, asking people questions and surveying them and such. So we watched it when we got to her house. That was interesting. Then we went downstairs and made another movie. It was one of those dating game shows, and it was quite strange. I was the janitor, and I made sure I was as obnoxious and awkward as possible. I made people move as I swept under their feet, and I made sure to walk across in front of people as much as possible. It was pretty fun.

The next day was Saturday, as generally Saturday comes after Friday, except in the case where February 29th of a leap year and a full solar eclipse occur on the same day. The calendar producers are too busy looking at the eclipse in that case to realize that Saturday is coming. Something like that, anyways. Most of the day was pretty boring. I went out and bought Star Wars Episode III, though, and then watched it, so that was good. Then my parents had their friends over, so I stayed for the food and then left for Erica’s house for her “get-together.” That’s what I called it when I told my parents about it. I like to use words that they understand, and since it wasn’t really a “party” anyways, that’s the term I used. It has so much less of a negative connotation in a parents’ eyes than a “party” does.

Most of the night was great. We went out to the park and had some fun and talked for a while, and then came back and started watching The Interpreter. That was where the fun began – and I’m using the word “fun” in the loosest sense of the word. Melissa very nervously asked if I wanted to go and take a walk, and I knew something was up immediately. Since we’re technically not even supposed to be alone, I knew that if she was asking to go on a walk, something wasn’t right. So I got up, and we went outside. Meagan got on her shoes to follow us for some unknown reason, and then she looked up and asked, “Am I allowed to come too?” Melissa just said, “Well, uh, it’d be pretty awkward.” And so we walked outside.

There are two things that a girl asks to talk alone to you about. There’s good things and there’s bad things. And within a few seconds, any person who’s not brain-dead can pick up on which it is. I could tell just by her nervousness that this was the latter situation. Something was up, and so I asked, “What’s going on?” (Stupid question, I know, but it tends to solve the conversation starting process rather quickly.) With a great deal of apprehension, she carefully chose her words. She, as you can probably guess from the opening paragraph of this entry, said that it was probably best if we broke up. I looked her in the eyes, and with both shock and understanding inside me, I asked the next obvious question: “How come?” She explained herself, saying that things just weren’t really working out between us, and although I was a great guy and everything, she just didn’t think that I was the right guy for her. And although I’m still working on interpreting that, since I know that girls always operate in codewords, at the same time I knew at least partially what she was talking about. Something wasn’t right between us, and although we still got along, it was something different than just getting along that we needed.

I guess the best way to explain it would be to say that there was a ceiling above us. When we first started going out, we did so with the full knowledge that we were not to be alone, and that we were only allowed to “group date.” It was her mother’s rule, and my parents’ suggestion, and with a few minor situations, we honoured that rule. I know that the rule was put in place with our best interests at heart, because I know what it’s like to be in a relationship where that isn’t enforced. So, for a while, things worked out. We hung out, and things were good. At the same time, though, I knew that the ceiling was fast approaching us. I knew from my past experiences that relationships need at least some physical attraction, and that physical attraction leads the couple into a deeper relationship with each other. It’s the bond that they share, and without it, they really can go nowhere. Sure they can get along and hang out, but as soon as the physical stuff starts, there’s no turning back. It’s not wrong in itself, but I know that this physical stuff that is so important to a “relationship” (as opposed to a friendship) also leads both people into a path that is similar, if not the same as, obsession.

If that makes any sense, I’m doing a good job here. For the most part, I tried my best to stay away from the obsession that so marked my previous relationship. I didn’t want to go down that road, and I didn’t want to hurt Melissa in that way as I knew that it eventually would. It was just inevitable. So, with this rule about group dating, I at least subconsciously decided that almost all physical stuff was out of the question. I mean, for the almost three months that we went out, the most we did was hold hands. I don’t say that as a good or a bad thing, but it was a necessary thing – we couldn’t go any further than that, or I knew that we’d soon hit our heads on the ceiling. We weren’t allowed to be alone, and though it was an important rule, it was a stifling rule. We couldn’t develop a deep relationship, because that comes with time spent with each other – generally time spent alone, although not always. So to prevent tension between ourselves and “the rule,” I changed. I didn’t let her in, I suppose. I mean, it wasn’t a conscious decision on my part; it just happened. I sort of put up a wall, and although I enjoyed spending time with her, I joked around more than anything to keep her from coming to close to me – or me too close to her.

I suppose this whole thing is likely an overanalyzation of the situation, but it’s how I sort through problems. I need to figure stuff out in my head, and by picking apart how things got this way, I can figure out just how exactly to feel. Right now I’m confused, and I don’t know what to feel – there’s a whole bunch of emotions in there, but it’s all a tangled mess, and I need to figure out which one I’m going to choose. But with all that said about the whole situation, I think it was ultimately for the best. I might not exactly like Melissa’s decision, but at the same time, I agree with it. In that sense, I guess it was a mutual decision – I just didn’t know it, really. I could feel that something wasn’t right, and yet I didn’t know how to fix it until it was too late. I doubt I could have fixed it anyways, but I didn’t realize what exactly was going on until she woke me up last night. She didn’t really seem all that enthusiastic about the decision either, but I guess it’s not really possible to be happy about something like that. It’s always harder to back out of a hole that you’ve created for yourself – or in this case, that we created for ourselves. That’s not to say that the relationship was a hole and that I hated it, but rather that we, to use the metaphor once more, hit the ceiling. We got to a place where we couldn’t go any further, and so the only option was to turn around and head back the way we came.

So I guess I say all that to say this: Although my decision would likely rather have been to work things out as best as possible rather than just terminate it, there are no hard feelings on my part at all. Most relationships that end involve a lot of tension and awkward situations, as the people who were once together now have to figure out where they left off. Generally, it’s nearly impossible to be friends once again with the people you go out with. Their quirks become annoyances, and since there’s no motivating factor to be nice to them anymore, the jokes that were once shared by the two people turn more into sarcasm than anything. And right now, I’m really not sure what’s going to happen, but I’d rather like to stay away from that. That’s what happened the time before with Kayla, and now the most we converse with each other is by a strange look at each other in the hallways at school. I don’t want that to happen with Melissa. I’m willing to let her go, but not to let her go worse off than she started off with me. One point that hit me in the book Every Young Man’s Battle was that we need to do our best to leave our girlfriends better off having known us. It’s hard to do that with a sudden conflict of feelings and emotions that try to turn us against the other person, but it’s important. Arguments and divisive conflicts are only a sign of immaturity, and if there’s one thing I don’t want to be called, it’s immature – even though, in all reality, I know I am.

Anyways, if you’ve read through all of this, give yourself a pat on the back. I really just needed to write this out so that I could sort things through in my head. It’s a bit more cleared up now, but still a bit of a mess. I just hope things turn out for the best in all of this, because I think that’s pretty much what both Melissa and I want. I don’t want to have this turn into a stupid shouting match. I have enough conflict in my life; I don’t need anything else right now. But with that said, I have not much time left until I have to go to church. This morning was Pastor Lyndon’s last Sunday, and so we had a big farewell presentation for him and his family. I think everyone will miss him, since he really brought so much to the church, and now he’s taking so much with him. He wasn’t only a senior pastor, but also our main worship leader. It’s going to be tight for the next little while at our church, but I think we’ll manage. We’ll have to. But anyways, I think that’s everything I have to say for today. You’ve just wasted your time reading the outpourings of my messed-up mind, and now the only option you have is to wait for another one tomorrow. It likely won’t be too messed up, but I never plan these things out before I write them, so I really can’t say for sure. But yeah. This is Jeff, signing off as a single man once more. Ladies, call me. (Just kidding.)

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