Having come to the realization, two and a half years ago, that, statistically, "someone" has to die alone, that the "someone" could well be me, and that I had better make good and sure that I was happy with my life--the one I could control--my actions my choices my responses--I gave up. I decided that I would rather be alone than settle, having settled for periods of time in the past. I would rather be alone than be struggling to win--his notice, his approval, his love, his devotion. I would rather be alone than go back.
My almost ex-husband in, what I believe was a combination of trying to win me back and trying to elevate himself above me, once told me that he worried about me; that no one would ever be good enough for me; that I would wind up alone.
It was "you won't find anyone better than me" and "I am better than you" all rolled up neatly in his nasal cartoon voice, a scoff at my choices. And I believe I listened in silence or I shrugged or maybe I said that he shouldn't worry about it. In any case, it didn't work. I didn't take him back, and I didn't feel chagrined.
And I did wade through a shallow sea of not better but different, pounding out the same weary lessons like stones on grey laundry. I never looked back to him. Only to me and those tired habits of unresolved emotion that included the fragmentary figures of men past and present. Until I washed up gasping with the effort of trying to control control mold and change what I could not.