Forgetting to Forget

It was late. We had a long day of adventure and beauty and my friend L and I were ending it sitting at my dining room table, wrapping up some to-do lists and mindlessly scanning through social media.

It happened in an instant, uncontrolled and painful. I saw his face on the screen, saw his words and thought “That could have been….”

Before I could stop it my heart reminded me how disappointed I was that this big, dreamy potential relationship was accessible no more and I let out a weak sigh of resignation. The time that had passed answered questions, freed and healed – except when it was the middle of the night and I was weak and tired.

“What was that?” L asked me.

“It is just late, and my mind is tired, and when it is tired I have a hard time controlling how much I think about him, wish we were still connected, want to be connected…” Was my pitiful sounding, but honest response.

“Why are you still friends with him?”

“I don’t really have a reason not to be…”

“What about protecting your heart?”

What about protecting my heart? I had taken my disconnection as far as I could. No more emails, chats, texts, expectations. No more dreams, day dreams, journal entries, no more bringing up his name in conversation without context, no more reading the same books, but there was this one last connection across the fiber-optic wires that I hadn’t attended to. Occasionally a well timed update threw my willpower into the wind. L was right.

The small pointed finger hovered over the Unfriend button and I hesitated….

“What are you thinking?” L asked about the hesitation and worry on my face.

“What if this is it? What if he notices I unfriend him and then doesn’t contact me because he thinks I am not interested?” What if I close this last feeble door and have to admit that there is no secret acknowledgement of my existence from his end? That this really was always one sided?

Two questions came from L: “Do you really think that God is that small?” and “Have you ever seen He’s Just Not That Into You? I refuse to be the girlfriend that sits here and says ‘Maybe he is busy’ or ‘Maybe he just needs a little time,’ He knows how to get a hold of you if he wants to.”

Ouch. And thank you.


No more profile updates, no more status updates, no more knowing what was going on in his life without him telling me directly.

The same goes for Twitter. Nails in the coffin, deadbolts on the door.

The next day I realized how often my mind really did wonder about him.  I wished it a little more temporary, but actions speak louder than words and his (lack of) action showed me that the disconnection was total from his side.

I don’t like being the girl that holds on to what ifs and maybes in the blatant and sometimes cruel face of reality. The new freedom feels good and not nearly as lonely as I feared.

I believe women are made for connection. I believe we feel deeply and unreservedly when we allow ourselves. I also believe that the severing of connection is painful and a process that takes longer than we like to admit.

For the sake of my heart.

For the sake of the maybe in my future.

For the sake of a great man that would never make me wonder about his intent, I pulled another weed in the unruly garden of my heart.

I write about it here wanting to place a disclaimer, wanting to say that I am not crazy, I am not a stalker, I don’t have a hard time getting over people. I am admitting that I let a connection go deeply without it being returned. I am not the only one. I am fearing judgment and ridicule at my misplaced feelings and barely controlled emotions, but I tell the truth – Love is not easily reconciled. I can not explain the depth that sometimes emerges, I can not explain the lack that persists without reason. I can not explain why hearts get broken and why some people have the power to be the breakers. I can not explain why one person would love so passionately and so deeply and could be looked in the eye and told the strength and depth is not returned.

Over the past few months I have heard the heartbreaking stories of ended marriages and ended engagements from three loving, good, dedicated people that were 100% committed. As the questions cross their faces and interrupt life, as the bitterness tries to take hold and is fought off with varying amounts of dedication, as the world continues to turn I wonder about this crazy thing called LOVE…

Love is as strong as death,
    its jealousy[a] unyielding as the grave.
It burns like blazing fire,
    like a mighty flame.[b]
Many waters cannot quench love;
    rivers cannot sweep it away.



37 thoughts on “Forgetting to Forget

  1. I can relate. Just recently unfriended “him” as well. It felt weird and sad at first but now it feels much better. There is a freedom to not seeing how happy and how good his life appears to be without me in it. It feels good and made me realize, I am okay.

    • Thank you for sharing! It does feel weird and sad, I agree, but there also seems to be growing room in my heart that wasn’t there before. I will probably always believe and wish the best for him, but I have to start believing and wishing the best for me, too.

    • I think it will be easier to NOT know. I could draw so many connections from what I knew, but had to admit that I never knew because he invited me in, I knew because he generically blasted it to the world and I responded personally.

    • I have not forgotten, just trying to take the small steps towards freedom. Even when they are difficult and when they really hurt. I do wish you more than luck! I wish you courage and wisdom and belief in the beauty of your future!

  2. What a wonderfully written blog! You stated my feelings and thoughts to perfection. I recently deleted the text messages from my phone that were remaining from “the love of my life”, who abandoned me six months ago. It had been months since I had scrolled through the texts and read the remains of our banter to each other. Suddenly, I wondered why I was holding onto them. I opened the messages, without reading a word, selected “Delete all” and hesitated for more than 5 minutes. Once I formed the will power to press the button, my heart broke all over again. The hope of having someone return your affections and a potential that they awake one morning to realize how special you were to them overpowers the heart on many occasions. Thank you for sharing, your feelings are not crazy, we all experience this at some point in our lives.

    • Isn’t it amazing how difficult it can be to push one little button? You put it just right, “A potential they awake one morning to realize how special you were to them,” is just the way I have been viewing this. Thank you for sharing and commenting.

  3. You have put to words every feeling and thought in my head. I beg to disagree with me but I can really relate and just feel like the world just doomed on me. Whenever I try to unfriend him or lose connection with him on social networking sites or stop texting him I feel this strong urge not to. What if he concludes that I am being bitter and he might dislike me more or I could no longer know nor hear about him when I lose the connection or he might just think that I have given up. I just don’t know. Some people think of it as an easy task, but no. Letting go and moving on is hard, and it’s not that we want others to go through the same stuff we’re going through, it’s just that we hope they’d understand more and be more sensitive about what we feel because they do not have any idea how our chests hurts. Forgetting to forget someone who means a lot to us and has shared a lot of memories with us is indescribably hard and painful

    • You are not alone! Protecting your heart is important – what do you need to do to be able to tend the pain and wounds without him opening them up again? We support you and believe in you. Do not fear.
      I had to admit that seeing him and knowing his life from a distance was not the same as knowing him and didn’t count for a connection. It isn’t easy.

  4. Thank you for writing this blog. Its timing was perfect for me. I too must learn to let go and walk away from unrequited love. I also love that your friend L was honest with you, and have repeated her line, “Do you really think that God is that small?” Wise words from your friend, and I am taking them and your blog to heart. I wish you nothing but love, happiness, and freedom.

    • And I return the wishes – LOVE, HAPPINESS, FREEDOM for you. May you find the courage to let go and know that the space you give yourself will be GOOD. It is a process. One small step at a time.

      • Thank you so much! Yes, one small step at a time. I look forward to your next post. Reading your posts helps me realize other people are out there going through similar experiences. It helps me stay strong and helps me let go so I can move forward and open that space up for all the goodness to come into my life. Cheers!

  5. I can relate to this so much. I’m the exact same way, except my ex doesn’t have facebook. My last link to him is getting him off my cell phone, which I’ve had ample opportunity to. I think it’s just that that’s the only thing left holding me to him and I’m so scared to cut that tie. But good for you for unfriending him on facebook. I hope you will be able to breathe well and not be so based on what he’s doing anymore. 🙂

    • The phone is just as bad because, if you are like me, you can come up with all kinds of excuses to contact him, and then you have to go through the roller coaster of his response/not responding, etc.

      I will tell you, though, that there is a lot of freedom in cutting the tie and isn’t nearly as scary with it cut as I imagined it. It is like hanging from a rope off the side of a cliff and when you cut it, you realize you could touch the solid ground the whole time.

  6. Yes its important to get it done cause the updates and all in your feed just sends that “thing” through you and then there it goes all over again.

    And also, very well written!!


  7. Pingback: Past and Future | I Heart Change

  8. I really like what L said “Do you really think God is really that small?”. I can completely relate to what you were thinking as I have thought just that. What if he can’t find me? L is right. If it is meant to be, it will be. We deserve to be fought for.

  9. I loved this blog entry. I can relate all to well for allowing deep feelings to develop when they are not returned. The holding out of hope is so painful. Glad you were able to cut the ties that bind. Sometimes that is the only remedy

  10. Pingback: 3/100 // Love | I Heart Change

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s