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I don’t know what that means other than it’s a song lyric. Guess the right song without Googling and you’ll win nothing more than the satisfaction of knowing you’re pretty good at music trivia.

I used my magic ear plugs at work today and spent 8 hours in complete and utter silence. I can’t begin to explain how wonderful that was.

My life has been extremely chaotic lately, which means that when I need to really think about something, I can’t. There’s too much noise in my head and it destroys my ability to concentrate. Other thoughts break in, or people interrupt me, or I have homework, or … the list goes on. But today? Today I was able to divide my brain. One half did my job and the other half spent the day considering my life and what has brought me to this place.

Although I’ve never used these exact words, I think it’s pretty obvious that “Bridget” broke my heart. Over the summer and part of the fall I was able to push it aside and concentrate on everything else that was collapsing around me but the last few weeks have been hell. I can’t get her out of my head. So today, I tried to figure out what she was trying to tell me, when she broke up with me and now, when she is haunting me.

I miss her. Clearly. I miss the face that goes with this hand.

And I miss the woman behind this camera.

I don’t think I’ll ever understand exactly why she left – and sometimes I think it had more to do with her than with me, but it always takes two to make a relationship work or to make it fail. I need to understand my part in it because today I was finally able to glimpse a sort of pattern.

I never walk away. I don’t even know how to walk away. It’s easy to meet people and realize you have nothing in common after two dates, but that’s not what I mean. Once a relationship starts, I go into high gear. The concept of “taking things slow” makes sense on paper, but I’ve never done that. Not even once. To my credit, though, I did try to move slowly with “Bridget.” But for only the second time in my life, I fell in love – and I thought it would last forever. I could picture myself with her in 25 years – and it was a sweet picture. When she left, I was lost. Truly lost. I no longer had an anchor; but she wasn’t the actual anchor, the anchor was the knowledge that someone loved me and accepted me and wanted me just the way I am. When that was gone, I was completely adrift. I did everything I could think of to make her change her mind and I drove her further away by acting like a lunatic.

Six months later, I still dream about her. I still hope that one day she’ll pick up the phone and call me. I hope she’ll change her mind. That’s slightly unrealistic; I know that, but I hope anyway. Because I don’t know how to quit.

I could recount some stories about nasty breakups and how I let the person back in, only to be trampled on again. Rinse and repeat. “Bridget” didn’t do that – she’s not that kind of person. Whatever her reasons were, it was never about hurting me. So maybe she’s a bad example. This is really about me and why I find it so difficult to walk away from a closed door.

It’s about fear. Abandonment. Low self-esteem. Control. Anger. It’s about all of those things – and none of them have a big impact on my life in any way except when it comes to love. “Bridget” was an amazing upgrade. The relationship was different on every level – except for the ending. I have to ask myself what my patterns are because I’m tired of repeating them.

I didn’t think I deserved love. I didn’t think I deserved “Bridget” – and somehow I managed to make that a self-fulfilling prophecy. That’s the issue. I finally see it. I even know what it stems from.

I just have no idea how to fix it.