If you’d asked me a few months ago, I would have told you God had answered my prayers. My first love had found me on Facebook, and I became swept up in the magic: wrapped in our dreams from over 20 years ago and believing that nothing would ever break our magic again.
Let’s back up a few months.
I stared at the friend request on Facebook for what seemed like forever. There he was in a grainy photo in which I could barely make out his face and his black framed glasses. It looked like him, only a little different. I didn’t really know how to react. I could feel my heart bubbling with a weird excitement and my brain telling me that it might not be wise to accept. Of course, I ignored my brain and went with my heart. I accepted not knowing if he’d ever type a word to me.
The silence lasted a couple hours. Long enough to go to lunch with my coworkers and tell them how dumbfounded I was by the request. And then, there in my notifications, Penguin had responded to my post. I scoped out the reply and it was advice to help with my shoulder ailment. “Just like him,” I thought, always there to give his own brand of helpful advice.
What I thought would be our only interaction turned into a two hour phone call just hours after I accepted his request. It was like no time had passed. We were the younger versions of ourselves. We could remember every happy moment of our life together. It was like a mix of just the right music and just enough champagne. I was intoxicated and happier than I thought was possible to have him back in my life.
In just a few days, we were talking about our reunion and how our love had never died. We started trading I love yous. He made my heart melt when he talked about my child. He was in awe of her. He fell in love with her and she with him, and I fell in love with them. We felt like a complete family. It was odd because we still hadn’t had a physical reunion, but a mental one. It felt so real. Real enough that I thought that I was going to have to change my blog title or find some single mommas out there to carry on the name.
There were doubts in my head, of course. The biggest being letting my daughter get so close to him, but he was after all, only a fictitious voice on the telephone. I mean, we were all living in a Fantasyland. It would take physical uniting to make it all real. I steadfastly told myself this. I even told Penguin that this was Fantasyland despite his protests to the contrary, I had to tell myself this to protect my heart.
We lived in our bliss filled bubble until a Sunday afternoon conversation I had with Penguin. He was again lamenting his loneliness in his current location and talking about how he couldn’t wait to move “home”. I don’t know why it stuck me this time. I don’t know why I asked, but I asked, “Well if you’re moving home, what does that mean about me?” And with no breath and no hesitation he said, “I didn’t mean to hurt you, but I’m going home. I don’t want to live where you are. So.” And that was really it. Just like that, he threw me away, again. There had never been any discussion from me about him moving here. I mentioned it once when he talked about a sister company to the company he worked for being nearby. I think he took me saying it should be easy to find a company to relocate to as my demand or desire to stay put. My response was, “I would have moved, but you never asked. You never gave me a thought.” There was no retort, just silence. Then I knew, I was not important enough to him to make plans with. The magic crumbled all around me like confetti but it thudded as it hit the floor.
Until recently, I have been able to keep our friendship intact, but I am starting to question if that’s healthy for me. Am I just disappointed that he won’t fight for me like I’d fight for him? Maybe I’m the only one who feels like we broke up, but it left a piece of my heart broken again. The piece that believed he would love me forever and someday we would be able to love each other again fully.