Yesterday, while I was on a walk, I saw an older gentleman who had to be in his seventies, walking his small dog along the same sidewalk I was on. I had my headphones in, gently removed one to allow me to hear if he engaged in conversation, and simply passed saying “Excuse me, little doggy.” Then I smiled and kept on walking. He smiled and tended to his pup.
In that brief interaction, I thought to myself, “I wish I were his age. I wish my life were nearly complete. He’s so lucky.” I instantly brought myself to a place of sadness and depression that can only be described in that moment as “wishing one’s life away.” I’ve been told never to do that, that life moves fast enough on its own, but I did. I couldn’t even help myself.
I thought about my grandfather; about all grandfathers and grandmothers who will soon be nearing the end of their cycle. What a morbid thought to have so early in the morning when the weather was beautiful, the leaves were falling, and I was zoning out. Trying to, at least. Why on earth did I think to myself, “I wish I were in his position?” I don’t know his life. I don’t understand his struggles. For all I know, he wishes he had 30 more years to spend on earth, and here I am at 29 wishing mine away. Despicable, Mathieu, really.
When I was younger, I would imagine what my death would be like. I never envisioned dying later in life. It was always earlier. Before 30, actually. I had this almost-fantasy of dying young. Part of it stemmed from my desire to be with my family earlier on than living 70+ years to see them again. Another part was because, selfishly, I wanted to die before experiencing another traumatic loss like of my aunt, or cousins (who I’m convinced will outlive even a cockroach — move over, Cher.) I can’t stand the thought of one of my close friends passing, so I assumed (and hoped) I would be the first to go so that I wouldn’t have to mourn them. Again, who are you, Mathieu?
Each day that passes, I feel I’m getting stronger, emotionally, mentally and physically. I feel myself manifesting more and more positive energy within myself, that I hope I’m exuding outwardly to others. People can tell I’m still down. And I am. I’m not going to pretend that everything is great when everything, right now, is just alright. I’m learning, still processing and adjusting to whatever happens.
In speaking with my mentor (who calls dying “transitioning,” and not in the sense of the modern use of the word which could indicate a male-to-female or female-to-male transitioning), she explained that when you transition, it must mean your work here is done; that whatever your purpose or job was here on earth is complete. Not a new concept, sure, but suddenly, dying felt very different from transitioning, and I realized I wasn’t ready for either one yet. I have so much more to accomplish in my life, and I know that. I have more people to meet, to inspire, to be inspired by, but most importantly, I know what I have to do with this situation involving N.
When the time is right, I want to apologize to him. Now that I’ve had time to process things and elevate my mental capacity free from anger, I realize he made valid points in what he shared. I was blinded by my love of him, that I stopped viewing him as a friend and wanted so desperately for him to choose to love me. That isn’t fair, nor is it a comfortable position for he or anyone to find themselves in. I tried to not have expectations of his time here, but I did, of course. I led with my heart and my head and created the world I wanted so desperately to see. When I woke up and realized this world is non-existent, that I can’t make him fall in love with me no matter what I say, do or give, that he doesn’t owe me anything, I got hurt. I felt abandoned. I felt left behind.
So what did I do? I took the literal action of abandoning him. I blocked him from social media and from being able to call or FaceTime me. I wrote him a 14-page goodbye letter and sent it in addition to the start of a new journal I was going to give him (and mind you, the last entry was anything but kind). And worse, I returned a bracelet that he always wore. One he gifted me while he was here. I left him to deal with his issues absent of me so I could deal with my own and I took, what I felt at the time, was a heartfelt approach to opening his eyes. Now I realize, I should have opened mine.
I made some errors along the way. I did things I regret even though, at the time, it felt right. I was angry. I was lost. I lost control of my emotions and harnessed in on negativity. As a result, I hurt him, both by choice and by accident simply because I was hurt. That isn’t a fair way to fight. He did what was natural for him: Shut down. Nothing I could say or do at that point would make a difference. He decided, like I decided, how he wanted to view me. And with fighting, someone has to lose. So why not do what it takes so that you’re both winners? Neither one of us were ready then. Maybe one day, we will be.
The bright side to all of this is that I realize that N and I are not compatible as lovers or boyfriends. What he wants to accomplish in his life doesn’t require a man by his side. I, however, do want that. I’m at a point in my life where I’ve had a career for however many years and no one by my side to share the ups and downs with. N said many beautiful things to me throughout our two and a half year friendship, and I feel I, too, opened up and said things to him I’ve never said. Believed in a life I never saw before. He was a dream, but he was never meant to be my reality… not in the romantic sense anyway. But there is somebody out there that will “fit the bill” for me one day. I just have to be open to that possibility.
Tonight, I really miss N. If you read these entries, you’re probably thinking, “You always miss him. He’s all you talk about.” Valid point. And to some of you who heard me speak of our troubles, you’re probably thinking, “Oh, Lord. Mathieu’s backsliding.” Naturally, I will counter that and say I’m not; that the reason is because, once again, I’m hearing my heart and it is telling me to let go of this anger and sadness towards N. To stop expecting things of him (or anyone else for that matter). To accept people for who they are as they are and let the chips fall where they may.
N is very charming. He’s so handsome. He has beautiful eyes and such a happy smile. I enjoy(ed) making him happy. He is patient, which is great, but also hard-headed, which is not so great (at least not for me). He can put up a wall like you wouldn’t believe, and he is rarely ever the first person to apologize for something he did.
But I miss him. I miss him very much. I don’t want our relationship to end over something like this. I want us to create a new and different relationship free of past judgments, free of expectations and free of assumption. I hope to one day truly see him as he is and take him for just that. I wish I could go back in time and step outside of myself to say, “Mathieu, calm down. Think about what you’re doing. Is this, long-term, what you want?” I can’t go back, though. And why would I?
I shouldn’t wish my life away, but I also shouldn’t regret choices I made because they wouldn’t bring me to where I am today. I know what I want in my life. I know what I’m willing to give to have it. And I didn’t realize that until after all of this happened. I wouldn’t have unless this happened. I made humanistic mistakes, just as he did. I want to atone for those mistakes one day.
One thing is for certain: when the time is right, I want to reach out to N. I want us to have an adult conversation and see if we can start anew. I’m still not completely over everything, and I reckon he isn’t either. He may truly hate me for the rest of his life; believe I’m the biggest disappointment that’s ever happened. I could take that same path, but I am railing against it. Deep down, I hope there’s a part that reminds him of my true character as I recount his. We both made stupid mistakes and said things we didn’t mean, but we also did share a love for one another.
I hope he’ll read the journal entries I gave to him when I was writing from my heart. I want him to remember that Mathieu. Not the crazy “obsessed-with-me” Mathieu, but the one who meant every word and longed to see him be happy. I don’t want him to carry hate around forever. I truly had some of the best times with him while he was here last month. I wouldn’t trade those memories away for anything. Luckily, I don’t have to.
While things have changed and will change, I want him to get to a point where he can think of me doing or saying something and just smile. The moment he found out I was taking him to Orlando, a dream of his… The moments we shared together overlooking the Smoky Mountains… The way we opened up more than we ever had countless times on this trip… And the way we held each other his last day here… I remember his smile. Those are and will be the highlights for me. Those are the true moments we shared where there wasn’t anger, ego or insecurity in play. There was simply a bond between two people, and it was beautiful.
When I think of him, I’ll remind myself of these times we shared together. And I’ll just smile.