Miles From Fenway

The Ex and The Marines
January 11, 2005, 9:39 pm
Filed under: dating

God how I don’t want this to bother me, and yet it is. Here it goes …

A year and a half ago I was living on Long Island with my boyfriend at the time. He and I had been together for nearly 4 years, had had a wonderful relationship, hell, I had moved to NYC to be with him after college.

The only times the he and I had gone through problems was right before I moved here. He had been thinking of joining the marines, and I had gotten upset. It’s not that I oppose military service, what I had a problem with was the man I was in love with going off to get shot at. Right when we were about to move in together. I told him that I would support the decision, of course, but I’d be very worried/scared/sad. He decided not to.

So that was in June of 2002. In May of 2003 he sat me down one weekend and said he was thinking about the service again. My immediate reaction was to cry. I loved this man with everything I had in me, and the thought of something terrible happening to him just devestated me. We talked about it all weekend. Eventually his decision had been “I’m not going to enlist because I couldn’t bare the thought of leaving you”. I was still troubled by it, and had begged him that if he really wanted to do it he should because I didn’t want to be the reason he regreted the decision later on, but he stayed firm. He couldn’t leave me like that.

How ironic.

The very next weekend, that Saturday, I got up, made breakfast, had, what I thought, was a normal morning. The ex declined breakfast and as I sat there eating while watching TV with him on the couch he said that he was thinking about it again. This time I was firm. Ok, I said, if this is something you’re still thinking about, that it won’t go away, it’s obviously something you need to do. We’ll make it through it, I can move in with my friends when you go off to boot camp. But you clearly have to do this.

And then my world came crashing down.

He turned to me, with tears in his eyes, and said that actually the reason he thought he’d been so confused lately was that he wasn’t ready to settle down. He wasn’t happy. I forget most of the conversation here, it gets fuzzy, but about 5 minutes after he started rambling I looked at him and said if I’ve ever needed a cigarette (I didn’t smoke around him) I need one now, and i went across the street, in my PJs to 7-11. When I had left, he had been in his PJs. When I came back, he was dressed, at the door, with a bag in his hand.

He said he couldn’t stay here. He gave me a hug. Said the rent was paid for this month, the security deposit would cover next month, and that he’d come and get his stuff later. The entire conversation lasted about 15 minutes. I was so shocked I didn’t even cry until after he left.

It’s been about a year and a half now since that happened. I’ve heard various things about him through mutual friends (we went to college together). Apparently he was telling everyone it was a mutual break up, blah blah blah. I hadn’t let any of that shit bother me. It took me a long time to realize, but I finally got to the point where I was like, yes, I did love him, but why waste my heart on a man that didn’t even have the courage to really talk to me about this? Who couldn’t do more than just run away? I got over it.

But something I found out today got to me. He’s a Marine. I just found out through our college alumni site. He enlisted. It bothers me to no end. It bothers me that I didn’t talk to him before he left. It bothers me that he could get hurt. It bothers me that it bothers me.

And now it’s all I can think about. What if something happens to him and I had never talked to him? Am I still in love with him? Hell no. Will I always care about him and his wellbeing in a peripheral way after spending so much of my life with him? No question.

But do I contact him? Do I send him a note of congratulations seeing as how I know how much this meant to him? And where do I send it?

It’s just so weird. My life is so much better without him in it. I’m so much happier living in Brooklyn than I ever was on Long Island. I’ve explored the city more, I live with two wonderful women, I feel like I finally feel at home in NY and if he hadn’t left me none of that would have been true. So why do I still feel so sad when I look back at this story. And why am I so concerned about him now?

Ok, it’s time to stop rambling. KR, if for God knows what reason you ever found this blog, and figured out who I am, know that my thoughts are with you, that I’m very happy for you, and I hope you stay safe.



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