May 15, 2007

Closure is a Mother: Part II (aka Cold Hard Bitch)

Posted in Karate Kid, Life, Love at 12:11 pm by Faith

Sorry for the delay in getting this exciting conclusion out to you. I’ve been wrapped up in post-graduation bliss. It was actually kinda hard sitting down and telling myself to write this, but hey, I promised you guys a conclusion, so here it is:

I already mentioned how I experienced a chance encounter with Lucille Larusso that gave me a little bit of closure on the train wreck that was my relationship with Karate Kid. As I was leaving from my conversation with her, I made a wry remark to Kitrah along the lines of, “I’m so glad she saw me on a good day. I know her. She’s going straight back to Karate Kid and telling him EVERYTHING.”

Ohh, boy, was I ever right. About three weeks later, I was doing my thing downtown and pulled into the gas station to fill my gas tank before prices got even more ridiculous. I had already parked and started to fill my car with gasoline when I noticed it. Karate Kid’s car, parked over by the entrance of the building. I’m not going to lie. My initial instinct was to run. Instead, I chose the more mature approach of actually paying for my gasoline. My plan (yes, I had actually formulated a plan) was to act like I hadn’t seen his car, calmly pay for my purchase, and then get the hell out of that gas station. I was hoping that our paths wouldn’t even cross. It looked that way for a while… until I was leaving the gas station. Then, I hear, “Faith, we need to talk.” I turn to my right, and there he is: Karate Kid. I had no choice. It was an ambush. I was going to have to talk to him: (EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the truncated version. The ACTUAL version went on for thirty minutes. Here’s your highlight reel)

Karate Kid: We need to talk.
Faith: (sigh, glance at her watch) Okay, but I have ten minutes exactly before I need to be somewhere.
Karate Kid: Fine. (pause) God, you look good. My mom said you looked good, but I had no idea… you’re tan, and you cut your hair… did you lose weight, too?
Faith: Yeah. It’s amazing what happens when you have time to go to the gym on occasion now.
Karate Kid: I don’t want to fight. You just need to know that I made a mistake. I never should have broken up with you. I want to fix that right now.
Faith: (long pause) What?
Karate Kid: I thought that you made me miserable, but you don’t. I’m more miserable without you. And my mom tells me about how well you’re doing, and I can see you and how good you look, and how confident you look, and… why couldn’t you have found that confidence when we were together?
Faith: Are you saying that my lack of confidence was the reason things didn’t work out between us?
Karate Kid: Well, yeah!
Faith: (shaking head, getting mad) And we’re just ignoring the problems that I had with you? Is that how this is working? (pause) Do you want to know WHY I wasn’t confident when we were together?
Karate Kid: Because you couldn’t find it in yourself to be that way.
Faith: (laughing) No. It was because YOU KILLED IT out of me. I spent my days walking over eggshells trying not to piss you off because of the things you’d say to me.
Karate Kid: But don’t you miss what we lost?
Faith: Yeah, I miss it. I’m not going to lie. But in losing you, I found someone who is crazy… and funny… and witty. Someone who dances around the kitchen half-naked at two in the morning just because they feel like it. I found someone who is comfortable with the skin they’re in. I found someone who’s happy.
Karate Kid: (angry) Who are you dating?!
Faith: Not that it’s any of your business anymore, but I’m not dating anyone. I was talking about ME. After you left, I found all those things in me. And I’m happy. Without you.
Karate Kid: You can’t tell me that you don’t miss me.
Faith: (sad smile) I DO miss you. (pause) I just missed ME more. (starting to walk away)
Karate Kid: Oh, so you’re just going to walk away from everything we shared?
Faith: (turns around to face Karate Kid) No, I choose to run. (gets in her car and drives off)

After I drove away, I couldn’t believe what I had just done. Karate Kid had said EVERYTHING I wanted to hear… but I was shocked that it didn’t matter to me anymore. I knew he was totally wrong for me. I knew nothing had really changed, except he was regretting his decision to leave me. Had I taken him back, it would have been the same old cycle.

When I got home, I did something that I didn’t expect. I cried. Not the sad tears of “Oh, I should have taken him back,” but the frustrated tears of “I so did not need that just now.” and “Why in the hell wasn’t that as satisfying as I thought it would be?” After I was done crying, I did something else that I didn’t think I could do for at least a few more months. I deleted his number from my cell phone.

Goodbye, Karate Kid.

May 8, 2007

Closure is a Mother: Part I

Posted in Karate Kid, Life, Love at 8:44 am by Faith

(NOTE FROM FAITH: I was going to save this post for much later, but I didn’t anticipate it being a two-parter so quickly. Part II should follow sometime today…)

Closure comes to us in really strange ways, I’ve found. For those of you just tuning in, I had a pretty bitter breakup with Karate Kid about six weeks before the inception of this blog. As readers, be glad that I spared you from such detail. In any case, I didn’t expect to get ANY sort of closure on my relationship with Karate Kid, but life has a way of surprising the heck out of you sometimes.

Case in point: I was walking with Kitrah the other day before class. It was getting late and we had mutually decided that we were in the market for some caffeine, hence a trip to the Student Store. As we were walking in the direction of the Student Store, I caught a glimpse of Karate Kid’s Mom, who I will (originally) name Lucille Larusso. Lucille and I had a pretty good relationship while I dated the Karate Kid, so it didn’t seem right of me to ignore her:

Faith: (calling out) Lu-cillle…..
Lucille: (spotting Faith and jumping out of her seat, running over to Faith) Oh, Faith! (embraces her) Let me take a look at you! You look great! You’re so tan… and you cut your hair! (pause)…did you lose some weight, too?
Faith: (laughing) Thanks. I’m doing pretty well.
Lucille: Well, yeah! You look great! (Hugs Faith again) God, sweetie. I’ve missed you!

The conversation continued for a few minutes and was very obviously pointed AWAY from the topic of Karate Kid and myself, something which was very much welcomed and appreciated. However, as the conversation progressed, the topic quickly turned to Karate Kid’s Child, who is apparently having quite a bit of trouble in school since my absence:

Lucille: (venting)… and Karate Kid is completely ignoring the issue!
Faith: No offense, but it sounds familiar.
Lucille: Oh, none taken, sweetie. I’m his mother. I *know* that Karate Kid is absolutely horrible at relationships. He has no idea to what a woman needs. (shooting Faith a pointed look)
Faith: (genuinely surprised and fighting back tears) THANK YOU for that.

I made a hasty exit shortly thereafter, citing class as my main reason, but it was because I didn’t want to break down and cry in front of Lucille. She’s been put in a bad situation already and I didn’t want to make it worse. It was amazing to me how she could level me to tears with just a few words, especially considering that I hadn’t really been upset over Karate Kid in quite a while. It was just nice to hear someone from *his* side of the camp admit that they knew I had tried my hardest in the relationship.

It wasn’t much, but it made me feel quite a bit betterl. Little did I know that the real doozy was yet to come…

TO BE CONCLUDED…

April 5, 2007

Reclaiming Faith

Posted in Karate Kid, Life, Love, The Infamous Ex at 11:20 am by Faith

I had an interesting realization yesterday. I got home from school and was greeted by The Pooch, who was very excited to see me. Generally, as The Pooch is an only dog, I like to leave the radio on for her so she doesn’t feel totally alone in the house while I’m gone. (Yes, I like to spoil my dog– anyone got a problem with that?)

Anyway, as I was giving The Pooch her usual hugs and scratches hello, one of my favorite songs came on the radio. I did something that I haven’t done in almost three years. I started DANCING, Ally McBeal style in the middle of my apartment. The Pooch wasn’t sure what to think. She cocked her head at me and then did something hilarious. Her tail started wagging and she started wiggling around and trying to jump up on me. It was like she was dancing, too!

girl-dancing.jpg

After a few minutes, I stopped dancing and sat on the floor with The Pooch in my lap. I realized that spastic solo dancing around my apartment was something that I hadn’t done since BEFORE I started dating The Infamous Ex (who came before Karate Kid, for those of you in the audience keeping track of my lame-ass loser ex-boyfriends. Quick Backstory: Engaged to The Infamous Ex and had a hellacious breakup, to be followed by a year of making up and breaking up before I finally saw the light.) As this realization hit me, I could only smile because I knew what the spastic dancing around my apartment meant.

Before all my drama with the men in my life, I used to be this bubbly, happy, carefree person with TONS of energy. Co-workers and friends called me “The Pint-Sized Powerhouse.” As The Infamous Ex and I dated, I was still this person… for a while. Then I got caught up in all the dramatic bullshit that comes with being part of a dysfunctional couple, and that part of me slowly disappeared. I didn’t notice until I realized that this part of me was so far buried that I had NO CLUE as to how to find her again. Realizing that The Infamous Ex was poison to my personality, I broke all ties with him. Then I started dating The Karate Kid. This worked, too… for a while… until I realized that I was in EXACTLY the same situation with him that I had been in with The Infamous Ex, only worse now, because there was a child involved. (NOT MINE!)

Now, as the dust is settling on my relationship with The Karate Kid, I’m seeing something that I haven’t seen since before I started dating The Infamous Ex: I’m seeing that part of me that is so happy with life that she just has to kick up her heels and rock out around her apartment once in a while. Yeah, my life is far from perfect. But it’s a hell of a lot closer to perfect now that Karate Kid isn’t in it anymore. That happy, carefree soul with boundless energy is slowly emerging from the wreckage, and I couldn’t be happier about it. To quote Randal from Clerks II, “It’s okay. I’m taking it back.”

Welcome back, “Pint-Sized Powerhouse.” I’ve missed you.

April 3, 2007

Observations From Work

Posted in Karate Kid, Life, Love, Work at 12:23 pm by Faith

You know you have to have been in a BAD relationship when, some three months later, a supervisor who you NEVER talk to (and for all you know, knows NOTHING about your personal life) pulls you to the side and says:

“Faith, you should break up with your boyfriends more often. You were a good employee to begin with… but now you’re just GREAT. It’s like this giant weight has been lifted off of you.”

Well, so to speak, I guess a huge weight WAS lifted off of me: My 170-lb ex-boyfriend, his 50-lb daughter, and at times, the 130-lb psychotic ex. Not carrying all THAT weight around would boost ANYONE’S morale… Just sayin’.

March 7, 2007

The Four Types of People That Need to DIE…

Posted in Karate Kid, Life, Random, Rants at 11:26 am by Faith

No, I haven’t read the book The Five Types of People You Meet in Heaven. I hear it’s good, but I’m not sure if it’s my thing. The type of book that I think you NEED to see on the shelves, however, is a book called The Four Types of People That Need to DIE.

For the most part, I’m a pretty gentle gal. I don’t really wish death on many people.. and mean it. There are a few, however, that manage to land on my radar:

1. The Constant VictimKarate Kid falls into this category. I don’t really wish him any PHYSICAL harm, but the man need to die. We haven’t talked in weeks, but when I think of the way the he used to berate me about always “playing the victim” and then follow it up with a “poor me” diatribe, I want to just PUNCH HIM IN THE FACE. Preferably with a tire iron. Right. I’M always the victim here, yet I’m also the one who put myself through college and grad school on my own, with only the help of loans and the occasional pity money from Mom & Dad. I’m two months shy of graduating from professional school… what is he doing? Selling pool tables. But that’s not his fault… rrriiigght. Maybe if you’d lay off the bong and get some ambition back, you could get your OWN degree, instead of simply staring longingly at mine. But I’m the victim.

2. The “Frien-emy”— Carrie goes into the politics of a “frien-emy” to quite some detail on Sex and the City. It’s basically the “friend” who keeps her knife hidden, but will firmly plant it in you the second your back is turned. I haven’t had any of these in years, thankfully, but I remember my main “frien-emy.” Her name was Jamie. She was a bee-yotch. She put on this facade of being my best friend, and then would try to steal my boyfriends behind my back. It worked a few times and I was stupid enough to think that it was totally innocent. Then I dated a boy I’ll call Perfect 10, because I have YET to find a guy that measures up to him. For some reason, Jamie HATED Perfect 10 with the fire of a thousand suns. My friends all pressured me to break up with Perfect 10… and it was high school, so I was stupid and did it. It was only LAST WEEK that I realized the reason Jamie hated Perfect 10; she had come on to him and he shot her down. I don’t know what’s worse: The fact that I dumped the only perfect 10 I have ever known, or the fact that it took me over 10 years to figure out what in the hell actually happened. In any case, I don’t know where Jamie is today, but I hope she’s in a lot of pain. Bee-yotch. (And no, I don’t wish any harm on Perfect 10. He didn’t do anything wrong. I’m the dumbass who dumped him. I’m sure he’s happily married somewhere, to some lucky girl. DAMMIT!)

3. People Who Cut You Off In Traffic, Only to Make a Right Turn 20 Seconds Later— This is self-explanatory. I’m not advocating traffic accidents here, but it would be fun to do a NASCAR-style bump into the back of their cars… just to remind them that you witnessed their act of stupidity.

4. Slow Baristas at Starbucks— I understand there’s a line. I understand that you’re busy. But did you REALLY have to take that extra minute to STOP WORKING and start TEXT MESSAGING YOUR BOYFRIEND?!?! When you’ve got a line of people almost out the door? Really? It’s not like we had to get to work or school or anything. That scathing look my professor shot me when I walked into class 5 minutes late was totally worth your little “LOL!” to your boyfriend.

Feel free to add your own to the list…

February 23, 2007

Let’s Get Dirty

Posted in Karate Kid, Life, Love, Rants at 12:04 am by Faith

Many good blogs have begun with the fun pastime of ex-boyfriend bashing. Why should mine be any different? So… I have this ex-boyfriend (who we’ll call Karate Kid) Karate Kid and I dated for quite a while. Frankly, it was the longest relationship I have had in my life. I’m not even thirty yet, though, so that’s not really saying much.

But I digress. In my relationship with Karate Kid, I found that he had a LOT of baggage to tolerate: Psycho ex-fiancee, spoiled rotten child, trust and intimacy issues, the list could go on and on.. and on. And on. Anyway, patience ran thin, and Karate Kid decided to end things. Yeah, I know. I was the stupid one holding on to the threads of the relationship, hoping that I could use those tiny little threads to mend the big gaping hole that had devoured our relationship. (Give me some credit, here, guys, there WERE reasons that I was holding on so tight. Reasons that I’m not going into just yet. Maybe later, when they don’t sting as much.)

The breakup was supposed to be amicable. Like most of the other breakups I have had, however, it turned nasty FAST. I heard a barrage of complaints; I was selfish, manipulative, demanding, impossible to please. I was childish. I threw fits everytime things didn’t go my way. I didn’t know how to compromise. Or communicate. Or listen. I demanded he place me before his child. I never understood that he was a father first. Everything had to be a debate. The list could go on and on… and on. And on.

The worst part about all of this? I BELIEVED HIM. I was so entangled in the situation that I couldn’t see what I have been trained to spot: the facts. I was so wrapped up in guilt and grief that even my closest friends and family couldn’t point it out for me, even though it was right there in front of me. I’ve tried to take the moral high road with Karate Kid, for the sake of his child and because I like to believe that I am a decent person. I am TIRED of always taking the moral high ground. So, Karate Kid, I have a few things to say to you:

Selfish? Manipulative? Demanding? Is this WHY I picked your child up from school almost every day, took them to their Karate class, took them home, fed them dinner, bathed them, and put them to bed? FOUR nights a week? When the child wasn’t even MY child to begin with? While YOU were at your Karate class? You didn’t even get home before 9pm almost every night that we lived together. I spent more time with your child than YOU and the child’s mother COMBINED. That’s right, ME. But I’m selfish and demanding.

WHY am I so demanding? Because I asked you to come home at a reasonable hour to read with your child and to tuck them in good night? Am I demanding because I wanted to spend some time with my boyfriend, who would rather spend his time drinking beer with his Karate buddies? I’m manipulative because I cried over this a lot? You’re god-damned right I cried. I cried because I felt USED. I cried because I loved you and I wanted the relationship to work and no matter how hard I tried, you still found fault with me. I cried because I felt trapped, because I wanted to have a life like yours so bad. I wanted to go work out five nights a week, I wanted to spend time with my friends, I wanted EVERYTHING you had. Don’t you try to tell me how much you sacrifice in order ot be a “good father.” You are the WORST parent I have ever seen. YOU MAKE BRITNEY SPEARS LOOK LIKE MOTHER OF THE FUCKING YEAR. Your child is going to have so many issues that you’re going to make one lucky psychologist a LOT of money someday.

I’m selfish? This is why I bent over backwards to accommodate your schedule, why I loaned you money when you needed it… why I CARRIED YOUR SORRY ASS. Right. Because I’m selfish. Read those words again, Macho Man with your hotshot colored belt in Karate. I CARRIED YOU. I paid over half of the rent almost the entire time we were together. What’s wrong with this picture? What in the HELL are you spending your money on that you can’t even afford to pay the fucking rent? YOU made more money than I did… so why was I the one making all the sacrifices to ensure that we had a roof over our heads? Right. Because I was selfish and manipulative.

You are no catch, Karate Kid. You are far from it. I deserve so much more than you could ever be. You have big dreams of making something out of your life, but you always find a way to bitch about how your plans were sabotaged by someone… how your life got flushed down the toilet when you had a child. GROW UP. You call ME the victim, but who’s the one who has gone through the break-up and the time after it without getting drunk or stoned? Can you say the same, Karate Kid? Given that you were drunk the last two weeks of our relationship, I’m willing to bet my right leg that you can’t. YOU ARE WEAK. You are pathetic. And you are not worthy of someone like me.

I’m not saying that I’m this fantastic catch. Far from it. I have flaws. I have issues. I have annoying quirks. No one knows that better than me. But I also know that I have enough faith in myself to believe that I can find someone who will accept me for who I am and not try to change me into the puppet that they want. I have faith to believe that I will find someone who won’t try to break up with me everytime we have a disagreement. I have faith to believe that there is something better out there.

I DO deserve someone better than you, Karate Kid. Fuck you for making me think that it was okay to settle. It’s time for a clean slate. I have faith that things will get better; because without you in my life, things ARE getting better. Now I just need to rediscover the ambition I had before we were together in order to make it happen completely.

I’m Faith. Welcome aboard.