Redux: Emotional ADD: Affection-Deficiency Disorder
“It had been a while since she had been on a date, but in light of the week’s events (and onslaught of emotions which followed) she thought it would be a nice break to be in the company of someone other than the ghosts of her past. She met Jackson online using a website she visited rather infrequently. A profile she created several months ago, after a dating hiatus. It had served to be a rather disappointing reintroduction into the dating world, but she didn’t bother to delete the profile.
Jackson had made consistent efforts in getting to know her. He sent frequent messages and would regularly try to engage in conversation with her and on occasion, would ask her out. She was not as enthusiastic about him. He was good looking, established and ‘stable,’ but she wasn’t attracted to him. She hadn’t been attracted to anyone lately, not since them. She was relatively uninterested in responding to his messages, let alone getting involved with him romantically, but he was persistent… and polite. To avoid the guilt of rejecting such a ‘nice guy,’ she continued to talk to him.
Two days ago he asked her out again. She didn’t respond right away. In fact, she waited until he was offline to say ‘yes.’
It was Friday night, and he was taking her to a fancy new restaurant in town; it was obvious he was trying to impress her. As they waited to be seated, he expressed his gratitude in being afforded the opportunity to take her out. She smiled politely, but had her suspicions. She knew he was sincere, but she was a stranger to chivalry.
As the evening progressed and his courtliness continued, she struggled to take him seriously. She looked away when he complimented her and avoided making eye contact in moments of silence. She even noticed herself retract her hand when she thought he was reaching to hold it while talking to her. He was reaching for her glass to top it up. She couldn’t accept his feelings for her. She didn’t understand his attraction towards her. She felt overwhelmed and numb at the same time. Why was this happening?
Was her heart really broken beyond repair? Had she become immune to emotion?
Her distress was evident and Jackson quickly assumed culpability. She assured him that her mind had merely wandered to her office; a blatant lie. She couldn’t tell him the truth, not when she still refused to accept it.
Seeing another opportunity to ‘make her smile.’ Jackson asked whether she would like dessert, pointing out that they had her favourite. When she looked confused, he reminded her of the conversation they shared several weeks ago discussing her penchant for desserts and her particular favourite; Tiramisu.
She looked up from the menu. She noticed the curve of his smile and his endearing laugh lines. She looked into his eyes saw her reflection. She did not see any laugh lines or the curve of her smile. She was not smiling. As she sat in the company of this kind-hearted man, who seemed to want nothing more than the opportunity to adore her, she felt nothing. She politely declined and he excused himself to pay the bill before they proceeded with the remainder of the date. Jackson had mentioned the date entailed more than just dinner.
She noticed two tickets in the inside pocket of the jacket he rested on the chair beside his. She had no doubt they were tickets to the theater. After all, she had mentioned her interest in live theater once. She reached into the pocket and retrieved his cell phone. 8:04 PM
It had only been an hour. She felt suffocated. She hastily grabbed her jacket and bolted out the front door.
Jackson returned to a vacant table and saw the note his date had left behind;
He frantically looked around before running out the door in hopes of catching her before she disappeared.
She was gone. He pulled out his phone to try and call her and noticed her number and contact information had been deleted. He drove around the block, desperately trying to find her, he needed to know that she was safe. No luck. Distraught and disappointed, Jackson sat in his parked car and logged onto the dating website and tried to retrieve their thread of messages. Gone. Her profile had also been deactivated. At a loss for words, Jackson sat in disbelief.
Unbeknownst to Jackson, his ‘disappeared date’ sat in a cab across the street, watching him. She couldn’t blame this one on them; this was all her. She tightly closed her eyes and a tear escaped, rolling down her cheek. For the first time that evening, she felt emotion. She felt grief. It was then that she realized, her healing had just begun.”
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Segmented, her thoughts.
Distracted, she is.
Unfortunate, the events.
Closure, she seeks.
Darkness, she finds.
Hidden in lies.
a Sinner in Disguise.
“Bring your love baby, I can bring my shame
The familiar beat echoed through the room.
Bring the drugs baby, I can bring the pain;
The lyrics enveloped her.
I got my heart my here. Got my scars right here.
She lost herself in the music.
The poison of betrayal coursed through her veins, swallowing her in its bitterness. A part of her knew she was a fool to have thought things would be different this time. She knew the moment those three words left her lips (despite the fact that she never stopped loving), things had changed. It was about power for her, [name] was convinced now, more than ever, that’s all it ever was for her. Here they were, months later, re-living the past. She had willfully neglected and selectively omitted, but however beautifully articulated the deception was, it was just that: deception.
She had lied then and now, again.
[name] felt her heart sink into stomach as she heard about the re-kindled love between the former lovers. How could she, and who could she tell? Suffocating her heartache, she maintained silence as her best friend confided in her. She quickly discovered that he had lied too.
She was hurt, embarrassed and angry. Together, they had shattered whatever remnants the meaning of word trust had for [name]. Like a glass once broken, she would never be the same…”
NOTE: Explicit Lyrics
“The date from the other night had made her uncomfortably aware of her emotional unavailability. Her body held no sanctity in her eyes. Without a heart to cherish, it had become a mere cavity for her organs.
Love doesn’t live here anymore.
A glint of carnal desire reflected back in her eyes as she stared into the mirror before her.
She remembered how he lovingly caressed her arm and kissed the nape of her neck, while tightly holding her hair.
She remembered how she forcefully pulled her closer by the buckle of her belt.
She remembered how they had loved her within hours of one another. Different lovers, different days. The only commonality between the them was that they were all strangers mere hours before.
These drunken (and occasionally drug-induced) sexual trysts were desperate attempts to fill the void where her heart… and soul, used to be. But each night and every lover seemed to perpetuate the hollowness that encompassed her and her hunger grew insatiable. She could not stand to be alone with herself. Her thoughts ran rampant. Self-deprecating. Attention-seeking. She needed to feel… something, anything. She scrolled through the names in her contact list of her iPhone.
There was no last name. She sent him a text.
Wanna come over?”
Pieces of me; still Untitled.
“It had been a few days since the dream. The intensity of her feelings towards them had faded and the pining had subsided.
She logged onto Facebook during her break and saw he had commented on a mutual friend’s post, and that she had commented shortly after. Two days ago, she would’ve struggled with herself, debating whether she too, should comment, just so her name would show up in their respective ‘notifications.’ But not today. She continued scrolling. She didn’t want to see her name alongside theirs anymore. She no longer felt a knot of conflict and longing in her stomach. In fact, she felt nothing. The journey which initially (and always) started as sweet reminisce went through bitter revelations before arriving at indifference. In two days she had gone through the entirety of her relationship with them. Re-living both, the best and worst days of their time together.
Did her bleeding heart bleed itself out of all emotion and affection for them? Or did it shut down in self preservation? Or, did reasoning and logic give her a swift kick in the ass? She couldn’t tell, she never could. Yet, she was amazed at the strength and consistency of the cycle to compel such emotional extremes even after all this time had passed.
At least they’re not as long and as frequent as they used to be, right?
She cheekily smiled to herself and her ability to laugh at the situation. She had almost lost hope that a day would come when she wouldn’t be plagued with their memories. She shook her head in relieved disbelief and returned to work. This cycle had passed, but she wasn’t so naive to think it was the last.”