17 August 2010

He Broke My Heart in San Francisco

I want to tell you about July. I want to tell you about Jesse's parents' visit and the things we did. I want to tell you about our trip east, where both of my parents got remarried. I want to tell you about the brother I met for the first time and the nephew who (at 18 months) has decided he does not like me. I want to tell you about the cruise and the eating and the failed attempts at being healthy. I want to tell you about the new detox I tried afterward, about the never ending cold in San Francisco and about how the computer almost died until Jesse explained to me how I could nurse it back to health. I want to tell you about graduate school and explain why I've kept it from my blog. I want to tell you everything that has happened before I tell you what I am about to tell you. But I can't. I'm paralyzed. I'm consumed with one thought that is all encompassing.

Jesse broke up with me.

And there you have it. Maybe my largest fear (aside from drowning) realized. So now you ask "what happened" and I tell you I don't fully know. I last saw him really happy in May, before he went to Vegas for Memorial Day. He got too drunk. He lost too much money. He returned a different person, determined not to drink or to gamble and set on finding a new hobby. But there hadn't been time. June & July were booked. Our last event before vacation was my dad's wedding and reception. Sometime between the nuptials and the reception, Jesse got too drunk. He vanished, roaming the streets of Manhattan for hours. He returned. We went on the cruise. We talked. He suggested we talk after the cruise. I knew what that meant. And I tried to push it out of his mind.

We came home. He suggested we break up. I said no. He pleaded his case, saying I don't deserve to be embarrassed like that. He reasons he's irresponsible, can't take care of me and needs to learn to be his own man. He said he hasn't been as good to me as he could have been and I deserve better.

I told him I don't want him to take care of me. I want him to be my partner, my equal other half. I asked him why he couldn't just be what he thinks I deserve. He said he tried. I don't remember finding him lacking, so I think he succeeded. Obviously he disagrees.

Negotiations (as I call them) went on for weeks. I rationalized everything I could. I named every awful thing I ever remembering doing to him out of spite. I told him I'm not perfect and he should remember that. I offered to pack up and leave this city we both love, thinking the financial stresses of last year were lingering. I offered to quit my job and live on student loans so he could be chief breadwinner. I made every promise I could make to keep him.

I thought it might have worked. We had good days together. We had normal squabbling and comfortable laughs. I caught glimpses of sadness in him and I tried to get rid of them. He moved into the living room and declared our unit, broken. And know what? There's no rejecting that.

It feels worse than I could have imagined.

It's as if there's not enough air in the whole world. I feel like I'm suffocating in an open room. I feel that I've failed. I feel helpless. I feel alone. And I know I'm not. Kate and Melissa are going to swoop in as soon as they can. I have lots of offers to talk at any time. But as verbose as I am on your screen, I can't form a sentence without wailing.

This could be the best decision Jesse has ever made.

And that hurts too. He said we've grown up together and we're different adults. He's right. He probably does really need this. And maybe this is best for both of us. Maybe we weren't meant to grow old together. Maybe this is temporary. Maybe he'll disappear and I'll never see him again. Maybe he'll find his passion and be happier than I've ever known. I don't know. I can't know. But what's done can't be undone. We're going through with the big B(reak) U(p).

Right now he'll stay in the living room. We're both going to find new places. We'll need security deposits and a lot of other stuff to live separately. We have to sort our stuff. We'll probably be just roommates for a couple of months. Neither of us is angry. Right now we're a mopey, pathetic lot. But the sun keeps rising (or so they say, we can't see it in San Francisco) so life is going on around us. I should say 'around me,' as I am no longer part of a team. But you get the idea.

John Mellencamp at the Fargodome. April 2005.

When Tab & Mike first visited us in 2005.

Watching the World Cup at AT&T Park. June 2010.

At the Boardroom. June 2010.