Letting go of the Past

In the AA big book there is a very poignant passage about what our attitude should be about the past. It says that we do not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. Wise words to live by, but fuck that ain’t me.

Last year in September I proposed to my girlfriend and she accepted. Yeah for me!!! The big day will be in October and I know without I doubt that I chose the right woman. I should be very happy. I should take solace knowing that I will never have to go through the process of dating again. I will never have to try and filter out the potential right one from the wrong ones. My life is good, I should be ecstatic, but instead I am filled with remorse about the past.

I have gone over this time and time again. Scrutinized my fiancé with a fine toothed comb and she always comes out a winner.  She always comes out as the right choice. However I keep having these lingering thoughts of remorse from my past. I think about past girlfriends, more accurately girls that got away. For some reason I am dwelling on this feeling that I missed out on experiences I was supposed to have years ago. I am obsessing on whether or not I made right choices considering certain ladies way back in the day. Why does it bother me that I missed out on things in the past when my present is good and my future will be awesome? Is it  because I hate to be wrong? Is that it? Do I hate knowing that I made a bad decision at the time, even if it was decades ago? Do I feel like I cheated myself out of valuable life experiences that others got to have. That I missed out, even if it means missing out mistakes? What the fuck is wrong with me? I regret not making more mistakes? Oh boy!!!

We will talk about the first one and we shall call her DEF Lepard. you know, the UK glam metal band from the 80’s. She used to wear a DEF Lepard shirt. I actually wrote a blog about her earlier the one with the whitney Houston song and the girl with the Def lepard T shirt. The thing with her is that I was scared. I think I knew that I really liked her. I knew she was kind and sweet and I could really get emotionally caught up with her if I were to take the next step and actually declare my affections for her and actually have physical contact with her. I knew how to keep my distance. I knew if I never kissed her then she couldn’t hurt me. Whatever other guys she would flirt with whatever other guys she would mess with I would not be mad or hurt because I had no right be we had never consummated the relationship so to speak. Ultimately I was afraid she would make me jealous. I was afraid I could not trust her. I was afraid I might love her. My lord!!! Fear is all over this. Anyhow, we talked for a long time, which was very common for young people to do back in the day. Nothing ever happened, just talk. Oh I hated that shit. Whenever I liked a girl the more and more we talked and nothing happened the more likely I was to find faults in her. The more likely I was going to find an excuse to not initiiate anything with her. The more likely I would just let things fade away from attrition from stagnation. I really knew how to kill a budding romance, just ignore the subject, never bring up feelings, never take action. It became very predictable that if I never mentioned anything, If I never professed an attraction neither would she and I would never have to face it, I would never have to deal with it, I could remain safely wrapped in my cocoon. It was safer to remain sexually frustrated than to be emotionally vulnerable. It was safer to be angry with myself then to be hurt by somebody else. If I fucked up then I had myself to blame. Then I knew it was all my doing. That I was in control and I loved the thought of being in control, even if the outcome was misery and frustration. Made complete fucking sense to me at the time. Anyhow, after dodging the issue for as long as I could she actually brought up the issue of us being together. Oh yes, this is after taking me out to dinner for my birthday and singing ” I will always love you” to me acapella, just her and me at the pizza place and I actually found a way to fucking dodge that situation as well. Once it happened I did what I always did, I said “that was nice” and then did not address the issue. When it was all over and we said good bye I didn’t even hug her, made no mention of what it meant or how I felt, the only way she was going to shit out of me was to actually ask me how I felt, point blank. I was fucking brutal to deal with. I was a clam, I would not open up. Anyhow, she finally asks me if I could see us together as boyfriend and girlfriend, I guess this was months after the pizza incident, and you know what?I copped a god damn resentment. Who the fuck is she to find out how I feel first? Why doesn’t she have the balls to tell me that she wants a relationship? Why is she playing it safe? She should tell me what she wants and then ask me what I want? I should not have to make the declaration first. I was so messed up. So what I did was I found a way to fuck it up. I said that I couldn’t see us as boyfriend and girlfriend but I could see us having sex. Well of course, she said that would not happen and that was that, issue done and over with. I remember before the incident one of my friends asked me how I felt about her? I said that I hadn’t told her yet and she should be the first to know. I was smart enough to figure my answer would get back to her. I didn’t want that. So later she calls me and asks me if I have anything to tell her, I played stupid, “no, not that I can think of, like what? “Anything.” she said. “No.” I said. And that was that for the time being because I knew she would not directly me ask me.  I was ruthless. If you couldn’t ask me then you didn’t deserve to know. I had control issues up the wazoo.

The other lady we shall call red. I flat out loved red. Red fucking owned me. My heart completely went to her. The problem was, my body didn’t. yet again control issues. I would not get physically involved with  her. Same issues, couldn’t trust her, she slept around on her boyfriends she was huge flirt. But I loved her because she made me feel valuable she made me feel wanted as a person, I knew I was important to her. But I also knew that being said, she was promiscuous and I can’t cure that.  I did everything I could to paint myself out to be a horrible boyfriend. As I friend I spoiled her I gave her all the attention she desired, I gave her love, I valued her, I spent money on her. Let her boss me around, let her have her own way, pretty much she was boss, but, I told her I didn’t spend money on girlfriends, I didn’t spoil my girlfriends, that if I date a woman I will have sex with her but I won’t spoil her financially.  I was so full of shit. But she bought it, I guess.  Not that I have a history of spoiling women but at that point in my life I would have given her anything she wanted, anything if we had gone to the next level and physically had a relationship. I would have been done. Knowing how vulnerable I would have been I never took it to that level. I kept a safe distance, although we were close. This way she could be promiscuous and I would not feel hurt because she had no obligations to me. She could do whatever the fuck she wanted and I could still love her. I could yet again be safe from a distance.

Maybe I just regret that I missed out on things. I regret, who I was? I look back on my old self and know how restrained I was. Maybe what I should be feeling is sad. Maybe I am supposed to feel sad for the young me. The young me that was self tormented. The young me that was so pained and so frustrated and so restricted. Maybe all this dwelling on the past is meant to lead me to mourn the younger me, I think I am supposed to allow myself to just be hurt. To not be angry, but to be hurt. To let go of the past, I must allow myself to mourn it, not be angry about it, not regret it, but to simply mourn it.

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