The Stone Tradition: Hold a Grudge to the Very End

Besides a quirky deafness, I've a quirky memory. An even quirkier way of holding onto things for a long time, drop them for decades because I forgot all about them and pick them right back up again when something stirs the tendrils of my mind. I guess that's called, "revisiting an issue" or "having an epiphany." I think it's because at that moment there's nothing better to do. Or focusing on a dead topic will get me through whatever dire circumstances await me that I can't deal with.

It's a trait from the paternal line: the Stones hold a grudge to the end of time. I don't want to get into the long, boring story of that. Let's just say this is the fodder of Lifetime TV. Which brings up the perennial question: is it nature or nurture?

Sadly, I'm one of those people who allow bad situations to accrue until I break down. And that's when I freak out, acting like Fritz the Cat. Granted, I'm much better today, although the last 'romance' showed me that I back pedaled.

Small things get to me. Shit, I'm lying. EVERYTHING gets to me. But, that's the beauty of being a kvetch.

In this posting, though, I'm addressing a simple issue that has driven me batshit at times over the past few months. I didn't realize until an hour ago while drinking my customary trough of coffee in front of the laptop chatting with Bill Eggler, aka Sophia Walker, Editor-in-Chief of The Last Goddess Magazine, strategizing in my position as Editor.

The small issue came to surface from a weird dream last night. It stems back to a relationship I had in my very early 20's. I just came off a very bad breakup with a walking turd who wanted to annihilate me as a human being. This has been a recurrent theme throughout my life as I tend to gravitate towards sub-par men. Superficially, on paper, some of them have incredible backgrounds. Trust me, they're all shitheads. I guess I wouldn't want it any other way, because if I did, I wouldn't gravitate to them.

At any rate, I was heads over heels with this guy who I'll name Tom. This was a keeper. Tom was GORGEOUS (and still is at 60), vastly intelligent, world traveled, cultured, funny. And I cheated on him with an older man who brought nothing to the table. So, I self-sabotaged. Why should I have an extraordinary guy in my life when shit's readily available?

For the ensuing 14 years, we maintained a loosey-goosey sort of friends with benefits relationship. Then, he got married and moved. After his divorce, he visited me. It was bittersweet. Over the passing years we intermittently kept in touch. Until the Facebook connection.

Facebook has been a thorn in my side. People from my past haunt me. Some I vaguely recall, others make me gnash my teeth. Childhood battles resuscitated and I lost over 300 followers in one day. Worst of all, ex-lovers found me. Some from over 30 years ago. I wasn't suitable enough for a commitment back then, but damn, look at me now! Yes, I got staying power! Suddenly, I'm more than hot, I'm golden. They look at their wives who succumbed to age, gravity and their whims and now they want to chuck 'em for me. Fresh new/old meat.

They can go fuck themselves. They had the opportunity eons ago and guess what - it's gone.

Tom and I of course FB friended. He was terrific fun at the onset and when I faced medical challenges a few years ago, improperly diagnosed (what else is new?), he phoned me with support. But then there was that little thing that chipped away at me.

Tom and I had a few mutual friends from the time when we dated and through FB got reacquainted. Then, he posted loads of pics of himself, friends, places during that time. And none of me.

Got that? NONE.

Tom was an avid photographer. Yet he had NO PICS of me!

I never remembered him taking a photo of me.

So, I asked him about that through FB chat. He sidestepped the issue. Then, said he had a pic of me that I gave him that drove scads of women crazy for over twenty years until one of them destroyed it.

I wasn't appeased. It stung.

Then, he posted pics of a trip to Brazil on his FB page several months ago. A woman commented, "Oh, I remember when you did that. It was when we dated."

I lost it. The motherfucker two-timed me! I felt guilty about cheating on him for years and kicked myself up for fucking up that relationship with the only great guy I ever knew.

Well, I wrote a sarcastic comment and she responded, "Are you the one he dropped me for?"

I replied, "Hell, no. It must've been another woman."

Needless to say, I went ballistic. Tom messaged me to calm me down, saying he dated her way before me, how much he loved me, but knew I wasn't ready then. He pulled out all the stops.

It quieted me down. Then I forgot about the entire incident.

Until last night.

Last night's dream was strange. We were in one of those matrix-type cities where skylines, buildings, streets were contorted, stretched and distorted. Tom visited me at my place. He showed me a picture he drew of himself from when we dated way back when. It was childlike, stick figures of something. Then, he showed me a picture he just drew which was almost identical to the one 30 odd years ago.

Upset at me, he said, "That's why I have to go," and left in a huff.

Fuck knows what that meant. It was irritating and that scene repeated at nauseum in a loop. Tom showing me that pic, getting upset, leaving in a huff. I was only awoken when my neighbor's nasal, whiny voice bore through my deafness like an alien eating through my brain. He was on a cellphone 100' away and THAT I heard.

Double fuck.

Getting back to my caffeine-induced epiphany, I realized the reason why he never had pics of me. The truth always manages to be a low blow. The revelation cut me to the core. I felt flayed alive.

So I sent him a message on FB:

Bottom line: I wasn't as important to you then than I am now. If I were, you'd at least have 1 picture of me among the millions of photos you took of everyone else.

It's been four hours since then and he's been on FB. I doubt if I'll hear from him. It really doesn't matter because now I'm done with the past where I was burdened by guilt, where I convinced myself I fucked up. I didn't. I was caught, but he wasn't until 30 odd years later. A door swings shut.

Incidentally, I had a pic of him. But now no longer.

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This blog and all its posts are a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

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