I suppose you could say I've been trying to pick myself up off the pavement for the past week or so since my last post. The trouble is, getting up has proved to be far more difficult than I could have ever imagined. Such is the burden of the guy who wears his heart on his sleeve. You see, instead of springing upright in a timely fashion, I've been more like the deer you see when you're one of the first people to pass the scene of its collision with an automobile: limbs flailing, painfully trying to bring itself upright and continue on its journey, only the pain and damage are too great for any real chance at success. When this happens, the police officer on the scene has the unenviable task of putting the poor animal out of his misery via the .45 he wears on his hip.
For the past week, I've been that deer, only no metaphorical police officer has responded to put me out of my misery. Therefore, I've taken that task upon myself - metaphorically and symbolically, of course. I've rarely applied these two little words to any task at hand in my lifetime, but I've deemed them necessary at this point. I QUIT. The game is over. Give me my ball back, I'm going home. The extent of my injuries this time are far too great to hope for a recovery. I went down swinging, and it just wasn't enough. I failed - for the last time.
There's only so much one guy can take, I don't care who you are. By now, all of you know my status as a hopeless romantic. You know what that consists of: wearing my heart on my sleeve, being real, being genuine, being honest, caring, willing to do anything...all of that. You know that's who I am. The risk that comes with being that guy is that you put yourself out there on a limb to get your heart ripped out. And well, I got my heart ripped out. It wasn't the first time, but it was the last. I quit, as much out of necessity as choice. The thing about being a hopeless romantic is that each time you get your heart ripped right out of your chest, the person ripping it out takes a piece of it with them. There's only so much of me to go around, and this time someone just happened to take the last piece. And not only that, they probably took the biggest.
Let me give you a scenario: Guy has feelings for girl, girl reciprocates those same exact feelings. She acts on them, albeit briefly, and just when you think a harmonious melding of two people is about to occur, it's over. She doesn't retract those feelings, she just refuses to act on them any longer. I'm not sure there could be anything more frustrating than knowing someone feels the same way you feel about them, only they choose to ignore those feelings and emotions. I have a strange suspicion that it probably feels worse than outright rejection.
It's funny how quickly life can change. One minute you're on top of the world, and the next minute you're blindsided by something so negative, so polar opposite that your feelings shift to the other end of the spectrum before you realize what hit you. I think people who read this blog regularly like to take a brief moment out of their own personal lives to live vicariously through me. Want to walk in my shoes for a minute or two? Imagine making love to someone for the first time and three hours later they tell you it's over; all the while they're trying mightily to mask their feelings for you, which are exactly the same as yours for them. I bet you want to take those shoes off pretty quickly, don't you? For those of you who still want to keep the shoes on a moment longer, spend a week thinking of nothing but that person, and asking yourself only "Why?" and "What could I have done differently?" Second chances are rare. There's no DVR in life. If there was I would have pressed pause two Saturday nights ago and rewound to earlier that afternoon, and replayed those few precious hours over and over. I guess that's what memories are for; they're virtual DVR. I recorded that day in my mind, burned it to disc, and filed it under the description "The Day the Last Piece of my Heart was Taken".
When you have nothing left in the tank, nothing left to give, you quit. It certainly wasn't easy to make this decision, but I take some solace in reminding myself that, like Sinatra, I did it "My Way".
And now, the end is near;
And so I face the final curtain.
My friend, Ill say it clear,
Ill state my case, of which Im certain.
Ive lived a life thats full.
Ive traveled each and every highway;
And more, much more than this,
I did it my way.