I've been working at purging CheckMate from my life in an effort to move on. I'm a big fan of clean breaks, though this one will be a bit difficult, considering we move in the same circles. But I'm doing what I can. I've burned every memento that I kept from our dates, I've erased his info from my Palm Pilot, and I've deleted all the email messages he sent me.
I went through the emails before I deleted them. I thought this might be painful, because it would be like reliving our entire relationship, but the emails no longer held the emotion they once did. They weren't as special as I had remembered them to be. I guess when that happy love haze is gone, everything loses its sheen.
Over the past few weeks, I've realized why I was so sucked in by him. It's because he was mirroring me. He doesn't have a strong enough sense of himself to be himself in a relationship; instead, he becomes the person he's with. When we were together, I thought we had the same personality type, the same interests, the same values - absolutely everything in common. In other words, I was dating myself. And, damn, was I a good date. Until the mirror smashed into tiny little pieces on the floor, that is.
In going through the emails, I came across one that I wrote to him after he discovered that his ex-girlfriend had deceived him and strung him along. Ironically, a few weeks later, he did the same thing to me. Looking back, I realize that I was actually writing the email to myself, because I thought he was like me. When I read it again, it sounds like a voice from the past - the me from a month ago, sending a message to the me today. This is what it said:
I hope you had a good sleep and are feeling a bit better today. I've been thinking about you a lot. Every day that I know you, I learn something new that deepens my respect and feelings for you. I'm glad that you're the kind of person who is honest, caring and expects the best out of other people. I know that means that you open yourself up to being hurt when you encounter others who don't live by the same rules, but it also means that you are able to connect with people and have friendships and relationships that have real depth and meaning. I feel honoured to have someone like you in my life. It gives me faith that there are still things in this world that are pure and good.
I just wanted you to know that. I hope you have a wonderful day.
Rather than tasting the cruel irony of what I'd written, reading my own words actually made me feel better, because they really were to me all along. I hope that they can also help those of you who are dealing with your own pain right now. You know who you are, and I think of you always.