I recently met a woman whom I liked immediately: sharp, funny, and considerate. We spent some time together on my last trip to LA and upon my return she texted to ask if I was still in LA, she was hoping to get coffee. I answered "No, is everything okay?" She proceeded to send me a cryptic text and asked if we could get dinner the next time I was in town. Apparently we had "shared history" she wanted to discuss. Oh, so we fucked the same guy. I immediately responded "I don't care."
And for real, for real, I don't care. But then I it dawned on me that I would be devastated if it was my ex and my mind started racing at a velocity and in a direction that only begets dread: he spent a lot of time in LA, they could have easily found themselves in the same rooms, etc. So I had to ask: "Who was it?" And those few minutes between my question and her answer were excruciatingly long; my blood ran like mercury through my veins, I could barely breathe. It felt like she was torturing me with each second that passed. When I finally got the response and it wasn't him, I felt a sense of relief, the likes of which I don't recall feeling in years.
Until recently I only ever thought about how the grief for someone who's passed away can blindside you. But this picayune exchange showed me that the loss of love can lurk in the corners of my heart which, thank god, still beats with ferocity and abandon.