To be half-hearted is to be half-fake. And so is this job. But I won't go there because why complain about the obvious. Why complain about anything at all.
Mr. Nine once said "wow you complain a lot don't you". And I said well "nobody's complained about it before".
I would berate him as an asshole if it weren't for the fact that no heartbreak was incurred on my part. Besides, as he used to say about me, and I quote, I think of every asshole as just misunderstood or weren't hugged enough by their parents when they were little, like Pol Pot and Hitler.
He sets up a lunch meeting with me a while back. Returns a few things I lent to him. Shows me pictures of his new girlfriend. Tells me about his plans to visit her parents and other very serious things that I can hardly bring myself to write in public because it is simply none of my business. I warmly wish him success on all fronts. I suggest that he not to rush into things. I am genuinely bubbly and cheerful. He nods. He looks at me with concern and asks me whether I'm okay. In general life, and specifically after the breakup. And were any tears shed?
Were any tears shed?? Oh the heavy lightness of a question. The insensitive sensitivity of a question. The polite audacity of a question.
I turn my head away for a minute and pretend to be choosing my words. Inside I suppress a mixture of guilt and lightheartedness. I did not shed a single tear, you silly boy. But the concern on his face was not convincing. It was the damnest thing. I couldn't decide whether I would be disappointing him or reassuring him with my lack of a heartbreak.
I couldn't decide.
I finally tell him that it was exhausting (mainly referring to prior the breakup instead of post, but somehow forgot to add that little detail). He nods. I gain a bit of confidence. I tell him that it was tough, and therefore it feels like a weight lifted off my shoulders. He nods again rather uncertainly. I then tell him that I'm very happy with my life right now. Because I am. He smiles. Tells me that is good to hear.
I feel a little ridiculous that I am allowing myself to be subject to condescension from him just to reassure him that I am alright. At the same time I am not even sure that is what his ego wants to hear.
I become slightly flustered.
But even assholes can fall in love or think they are in love. And I've certainly felt that he loved me sincerely at some point, which is more than I can say for myself. It is a shame that I realize post-mortem that I should never go through a relationship with only half a heart. So maybe I should just consider myself lucky and leave it at that.
He described his new relationship as "life-changing". I smiled and told him I think every relationship is life-changing.