When I fired up my cell phone Sunday morning, there was a text message from X which was clearly not intended for me, but for his shiny new girlfriend. “I MISS YOU, etc” (caps and all). Whaddaya fekkin kidding me??
I’ve spent the past two days sorting through our stuff in the basement and recoiling every time I came across a couple-y photo, an “I will love you forever, I promise” note, and sixteen metric tons of wedding crap (where did this stuff all come from??). X’s text did not come at the most opportune time.
Oddly, I was initially more bemused then upset. When he called later to see if he could come pick up some stuff, I mentioned his little faux pas. His response was a consternated, “Well, the phone didn’t tell me it did that.” Way to step in and take responsibility, pal. Hey waiter, send over a compassion salad for this guy!
So I stewed.
I took what was left of his crap in the upstairs closet, jammed it into a couple of boxes, and dumped it by the front door.
Finally, after he had come, collected his things, and was getting ready to leave the house I turned to him and said, “I need you to do something for me. I know that text message was a mistake, but would you please tell me that you’re sorry?”
“I’m so sorry. I know you didn’t need to see that.”
It was a little thing, but it was a big thing. It was nice that he apologized with what seemed like real sincerity, but what mattered more was that I spoke up for myself and simply communicated what I needed. I was still sad after he left, but I wasn’t wound up anymore.
I realized that I had found something else. Something I have missed terribly. My voice.