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27 August 2010 @ 08:31 pm
What happened.  
Ok, so the short of it is that we broke up.

I got back from the Japanese program and things were, emotionally, pretty much where they've been for the last year or so - not good, but not terrible, and sort of in this in between place that's what ever.

Saturday we're waking up and I'm having my first cup of coffee and Neil looks sad and so I suggest we go have a smoke and talk about it.  We sat down and he pretty much started with "I think we should separate".  So we talked about it a little bit - what were the good things?  What were the bad things?  The good thing was pretty much that we still loved each other.  The bad was that we'd lost our 'spark', that we'd been going in two different directions and he wasn't sure he could comfortably continue to do that (he felt like he was having to put his life on hold while my academic life was determining where we were and where we'd go in the future), that neither one of us was truly happy or making each other happy.

And you know, it hurt.

But it also wasn't untrue.  So I started pretty much crying because from the second we'd started talking I could feel things changing and it really being ... what it was.  Us ending a 15 year relationship.  I called a girlfriend to come pick me up because I couldn't stay in the apartment, surrounded by our things and our life together, not knowing it was ending.  It took about an hour, during which time Neil and I sat together and kind of cried, holding hands, but mourning in our own way I think. 

My girl took me to my other girlfriend's place (both of them are fabulous but one had an open extra bedroom), and they sat with me while I cried.  And stress smoked.  And swore because it hurt.  And cried while swearing.  It was a whole chain of smoking crying swearing.

And I kind of cried myself out with two of my friends there to support me and let me know that I wasn't totally alone and that maybe, just maybe, this would open up places for me to go that I hadn't considered, allow me to do things I hadn't thought about, and maybe it would be good for us both (that us, i'm trying to work on not using that 'us'.  but it's still there in some ways too).

I went back over the next day and Neil and I talked a little more and kind of mutually agreed that yes, this really was it.  We still really care about each other, and we want each other to be happy, but I think we both kind of started to see clearly that we couldn't do that for each other (not like we had in the past).  And we were both scared, so scared of what's going to happen.  But being afraid of the future isn't enough of a reason to stay together.

Also I think those two conversations, the one on saturday and the one on sunday, were probably the closest we've been emotionally in months, perhaps years. If that doesn't tell you something.... yeah.  We weren't sitting closed off, barricading ourselves or anything, but instead holding hands, and hugging.   And crying.  I packed up enough clothes to last through the week, and some books and my computer and all through it we were crying.  Because that was really IT.

And I drove back that afternoon to my girlfriend's house, and looked at Craig's list to see if there were rooms to rent somewhere in the city, went over to my other friends for dinner and just sat and talked and got hugs and support and cried a little and stopped crying and came back to the room I'm staying in, and picked up Dune to read until I could fall asleep (which wasn't easy or early, but eventually happened).

So then the first day of the rest of my life started. 

I met my friend for lunch at a famous LA french dip restaurant before I had to go to class, and we talked a little bout life and the future and ate some really fucking amazing french dip.

I went to my first class of the semester and discovered one of my favorite Japanese books (Masks by Enchi Fumiko) is on the syllabus, and saw classmates and friends and talked about my summer in Middlebury and got excited about the semester and the word I'd be doing.

I got into a little intellectual tiff with my advisor (for a couple of minutes until she backed off), picked up a paper from spring with amazing comments from another professor, and left school feeling knowing that classes and those things? those are the right thing for me. 

I went and had dinner in Silverlake at a little french coffee shop that served brie and bread and salad while I read an article for class.  I looked at a room in an apartment in an area of the city I'd really like to live in (but it was a little small).  But it felt like a good thing to get out there, to think about the possibility of moving forward, even if it was something I was doing on my own.  I came back to my girlfriend's house and read some Dune after talking with her and (eventually) went to sleep.

I woke up the next day and had a bad morning.  They're going to happen, and I'm not going to beat myself up for feeling sad.  So I cried on the drive into school. 

I had to do an oral interview with my Japanese teacher to confirm I'd learned things during my Japanese summer.  I actually asked her (in Japanese) if I'd improved and she said I had.  It made me smile, and feel like I really CAN do this.  Really.  And when you're learning Classical Japanese and going to be reading the Hojoki and even your nemesis seems happy to see you, you can't feel all that bad.

That night was the monthly 'drink and cigars' night for some friends and while it's usually just the men who get together and do their drinking and smoking me and my girl stayed and hung out and tried the summer drink of the month and listened to the men get raunchy.  I had to tell a mutual friend Neil and I had broken up and while he was dumfounded and didn't know the right reaction, I reassured him that I still didn't know the right reaction -- and it hurt, but it also felt like i was starting to make a clean beginning.  And while I had two drinks I didn't have the impulse to have more, but instead was pleased to sit and listen to the men entertaining themselves and told some stories and listened to others and found that spark within myself that told me that maybe this was going to be ok.

And there's more - there's the visit to my old place that I made on Wed where Neil and I, it turns out, can be in the same room with each other and it's ok.  It's a little weird, but I want the best for him, and I think maybe now he'll get to choose some things he felt he wasn't able to before, and that will be good.  And when I realized that I found that my heart wasn't that heavy.  Oh, I'm not naive enough to think that there won't be bumps in the road; emotional ones, mental ones, whatever.  But I love him, and I want the best for him, and he loves me, and wants the best for me, and right now?  that isn't us together. 

But that isn't us out of each others lives either. 

So I'm going one day at a time, one night at a time, one cigarette at a time (stress smoking, i'll have to quit soon), one dog pet at a time.  And I think I'm gonna be ok.  Different.  Gonna learn different things about myself.  Gonna probably make some different choices than I might have and that's scary that I'll need to and even a little disconcerting that I want to.  But I think I'm gonna be ok. 

and thank you, all of you, who dropped me message on my last post. I'm sorry i haven't replied to everything yet, but every word of every comment meant so much to me. made me feel like i wasn't alone. made me smile. even made me cry (but in a good way) because i knew i wasn't alone. i'm blessed to call you my friends.

also posted to dreamwidth | you can reply here or there | um, but don't worry, i'm still an lj girl
missus_grace: comfortmissus_grace on August 28th, 2010 06:10 am (UTC)
Aw sweetie, I'm so sorry. I'm glad you have friends there to support you.
*hugs from afar*
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:38 am (UTC)
thanks lady. *hugs*
(no subject) - shehasathree on August 28th, 2010 06:11 am (UTC) (Expand)
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:38 am (UTC)
thanks darling.
Malmalnpudl on August 28th, 2010 07:07 am (UTC)
Oh, Kate. I missed your last post, so this is fresh news for me, and... *tears and heart hugs*

Been there, done that. You will be very much in my thoughts.
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:39 am (UTC)
thank you lady. very much. *hugs*
Arielkikucutie on August 28th, 2010 09:16 am (UTC)
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:39 am (UTC)
thanks darling. *hugs back*
literate and stylish: hug youmishloran on August 28th, 2010 09:58 am (UTC)
Kate, I'm so glad you have people around. It's really important. And you seem to have Perspective, which is ace. Feelings are insanely mixed up (heh, I am not saying 'oh my situation is worse than yours' but perhaps I am in a place I can kinda understand the crazy post-break-up period a little?) and it sounds like you're not completely in pieces (although, to be honest with you, I think a little stress-chain-smoking and crying-whilst-rocking-backwards-and-forwards would totally be allowed, okay and perhaps also necessary!) which is good. You have the academia, and you know that is the right thing. And sometimes, I suspect, knowing that you're doing The Right Thing for you? That is the most important thing. And although this situation has been forced on you, it will work out eventually, and feelings will return to normal. (At least, that is what I tell myself!)

I do not know if any of that is helpful, intelligable or anything like that! But! **hugs and snuggles** I just wish I were closer so I could give you real life snuggles! xx
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:41 am (UTC)
me too - i go in and out of having perspective (like at this moment i'm kind of crying, you know, it happens every day and i do it for a while and then i don't and i go onto the next thing). at least i do have the academia because otherwise wow this would be shit. most of the time yes i do know that i'm doing the right thing for me, which is good. sometimes the perspective slips, and then i smoke and try and get hugs from people.

it is helpful! it's just helpful knowing i have you in my corner lady. i wish i could actually be around you to have mish!snuggles too. but internet ones still count.
Taraelementalv on August 28th, 2010 11:25 am (UTC)
As much as it hurts, it sounds like it was the right thing to do, and that you're both moving forward in positive ways. I'm just sorry this hit after being away from him for so long.
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:42 am (UTC)
thanks lady. i go through the moments of knowing it was the right thing and then the moments of not, but i think in the end i will make my way. it just hurts sadly, but then again, it would be worse if it didn't. i have no idea if that's coherent, but anyway, thanks.
hawera on August 28th, 2010 11:31 am (UTC)
I am so sorry for the pain you are going through. It will diminish, but meantime all you can do is copy the French retreat from Moscow, keep on putting one foot after another.
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:48 am (UTC)
thank you so much lady. i appreciate the advice - i am pretty much taking it a day at a time (though sometimes hour by hour). *hugs*
seldomifeverseldomifever on August 28th, 2010 01:09 pm (UTC)
The end of a relationship is always sad. There's so much to mourn. *big hugs*
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:49 am (UTC)
it is, and sometimes i'm more philosophical about it than others (on a moment to moment basis tonight it seems). thank you for the hugs lady - they mean a lot.
anyjayanyjay on August 28th, 2010 01:40 pm (UTC)
This is a hard, hard time, but it sounds like you are handling it in a very healthy way.

Know that lots of people are sending you good wishes as you start this new part of your life.
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:51 am (UTC)
thank you sweetest. i'm trying my best (some nights i do better than others, though at the time i wrote this post i was feeling philosophical ... well it changes, but i'm trying not to be too hard on myself when it does. thank you so much for the good wishes (and thank you for your offer in the earlier post too - i don't know if i responded but just you offering? made me smile, which was really appreciated at that moment). *hugs*
(Deleted comment)
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:47 am (UTC)
thanks midomi-chan. i'm taking it a day at a time (some are better than others so far).

and yeah, classical! it is kind of cool - we're reading the Hojoki as our main text.

Professor Fancypants von Deth, Esq: Dinolovedwg on August 28th, 2010 07:36 pm (UTC)
*hugs* It sounds good that you're dealing with this as it comes and have the support of your friends.
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:46 am (UTC)
thanks darling. i'm taking it moment to moment, even the crying ones, and just glad that i have so many shoulders to cry on. *hugs*
Cordykitten: japewierd  hugscordykitten on August 28th, 2010 08:03 pm (UTC)
Haven't seen your last post yet.
I'm sorry. *wishes you strength*
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:45 am (UTC)
thanks lady. it's been a back and forth thing, but every day is new and i just keep telling myself that. *hugs*
I am Derek's vocal eyebrows: jd; cs [me]literati on August 28th, 2010 11:41 pm (UTC)

I hope things get easier for you. *lots of strength vibes*
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:45 am (UTC)
thanks darling. every day is one step forward. *hugs*
BJ: Sighdara_starscream on August 29th, 2010 07:53 am (UTC)
(snuzzle) So far you seem to be handling the situation with remarkable grace . . . but just so you're aware, falling apart is okay. Not saying it's mandatory, just okay.

(hugs tight)
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:45 am (UTC)
yeah, well, when i wrote the post i was doin ok, but you know, i go in and out. thanks for the reassurance about the emotional stuff lady - it's happening too (right now in fact) and i figure i'm allowed, especially because you guys won't think less of me if i do. *hugs back, tihgt*
Sofysoft_princess on August 30th, 2010 03:29 pm (UTC)
*hugs hugs hugs* I am thinking about you, sweetie. *hugs more*
my monkied brainkatekat1010 on August 31st, 2010 05:43 am (UTC)
*squishes you to itty pieces* thanks lady. it means a lot.