If they say experience is the best teacher, then I agree wholeheartedly. In fact, it is more than that. To me, experience is also a vivid reminder.
I am not nicknamed The Elephant Memory for nothing. They say I store a lot of memories – good and bad ones – like either precious treasures or scars that stay visible. Many of them have been from years before. For this reason alone, I am feared by quite a plenty of people.
There are a lot of examples that have turned me to become this way. For starters, I have stopped sharing stories about boyfriends with so many people. The reasons are varied. They either don’t take me seriously or always suspect the guy’s possibly ill-intentions. They don’t have to clarify, but I know it every time they look at me. It’s either my extra fat or the fact that I’m not that girly.
It’s even worse if the guy happens to be good-looking – according to society’s general standard. They suspect him even more. I have noted down their questions like typical standard procedures. How do you know he’s not playing you? What if you’re only a flavor of the week?
Then, if it turns out they’re right about the guy, they’ll tell me that they’ve been right about him all along. It’s a silent blame game once again. Why didn’t I see that coming? I should’ve known. I should’ve been more careful. How could I have been so stupid? You’re too nice. You’re too confident. That’s your problem. That’s always been your problem all along. It doesn’t matter that my friends are much kinder, by telling me that no, I couldn’t have known.
I’ll never cry over guys right in front of them. It’s pointless. They’ll probably tell me to just get it over with and move on. They don’t care if I don’t want him back.
I always cry over stolen security. I cry over the stolen time I’ll never get back. I also cry over the emotional investment I have made – which has gone to waste. Who says being kind is always free? Who says love is easy? So, no. It’s not about the guys.
Of course, eventually, I’ll pick up the pieces and carry the memories within me. I have to make sure that I’ll never make the same (stupid) mistakes again. However, this is where it gets confusing. The same people who have told me to be more careful now complain about me being too hyper-vigilant, almost paranoid. The funny thing is, they also can’t point the right direction for me. They’re not even mind-readers to the potential monsters among the people.
They can only scoff at me: “Come on, #notallmen!” without being able to let me know which men are safe for me. If that is the case, then who the hell are they to call me stupid for being fooled by some men? Who are they to tell me that I should’ve been more careful?
I know, I can never win with them. What’s there to win anyway? Since then, I just let them think whatever the hell they like about me. I know some also suggest that, if I date anyone next time, I shouldn’t introduce him to all the girls I’m friends with. They say, there’s a chance that one of the other girls might steal him away from me. After all, women always compete against each other. That’s what they (choose) to believe.
I simply laugh at that old, misogynistic idea. People are not objects. He is never stolen, especially since he is a human being too – just like me. He has the will of his own. If he is willing to go with her instead of staying with me, then the only thing stolen and wasted here is my time with him.
One thing is for sure, though. I refuse to be the damsel-in-distress here. I will simply tell them this:
“I’ve never been the begging type, and I sure as hell won’t even start now.”
If he wants to stay, then he can stay. If he wants to leave, then just leave instead of pretending that he still wants to stay. Don’t waste my time with hope, because I don’t want to have anything more stolen from me. These days, I barely have enough left for myself.
I don’t give my heart away. Nobody can steal the key. The only problem it gets broken from time to time is the wrong guests I mistakenly let in.