Nothing is more depressing than separating two collections of DVDs. I couldn’t remember if I owned Anchorman or he did. So I took it. I also took a couple of things I know I didn’t own, but he won’t miss. I felt a little guilty until I looked at the dog. He gets to core out my heart, pack it up with leashes and dog toys… and me? I get the extended edition of the Fellowship of the Ring and the second season of Arrested Development. If this is a contest I am already losing. 

She pees on the bed now. Her life is turning upside down and the best thing she can think of to do is piss all over the sheets? If you’re looking for more three-way cuddles, Riley, you are going about it the wrong way.

I never thought it would be hard. I never do. I underestimate the extent to which men worm their ways into my life. It’s time to pack up and move on but they’ve let termites into the woodwork. My foundations are compromised. I feel like I have to cut away little pieces of me every time I leave someone. They are not just song and movie preferences anymore. Now, they have graduated to living creatures and entire qualities I used to love about myself. How can I purposefully emphasize the “ing” when pronouncing words anymore? With his voice echoing in the back of my head, laughing. How can I allow myself to sing randomly about the things I am doing if when I catch myself it will only remind me of that day in my kitchen when he interrupted me by singing along in an off-key duet. How can I identify with nicknames that he coined?

I know it’s not supposed to be easy but I never knew it would be exponentially harder the older I get. I can’t just turn off the radio anymore and with it silence the memories. They are inside me now; they are part of my skeleton and I can’t get free without hacking off the limbs. What is going to be leftover this time? Will it be recognizable?


2 thoughts on “Leftovers”

  1. I’ve managed to hold onto songs and movies by keeping them close, immersing myself in them. The most painful breakup I ever went through was the same relationship that crafted a good part of my persona and the brunt of my taste in music– losing that would have left me with very little, so instead of running away from them, I ran deeper into them.

    It sucks, but you’ve got to make things yours after they’re not “ours.” Otherwise you lose too much. Memories become out of bounds.

    An ex and I, to this day, talk to each other in the same weird, Scandinavian babytalk lingo that we had when we were together. I can’t imagine her calling me without saying “Moose?” rather than hello.

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