This post is part of “Getting Over Maggie,” a series about a guy whose girlfriend has moved out.
Just as you are about to close your browser, you see a picture of a girl you used to have a crush on: Emily Von Epp, whom you were so wildly interested in when you were 17.
You remember how every time Emily was around, your body couldn’t help but angle toward hers, how you couldn’t keep your eyes from drifting toward her no matter where you were: the bowling alley, Taco Bell, English class. You couldn’t stop it, and you always thought you were being so obvious. You felt exhilarated and miserable at the same time.
Eight years later, you see Emily’s picture, a suggested contact on some social network. It used to be that we could lose track of the Emily Von Epps of our prior lives, that they could exist only in our memories, floating up at times to be remembered. But that’s not how it is these days (thank you, Internet).
In the picture, Emily is standing cool in front of the Golden Gate Bridge, looking straight on at the camera, her face framed by those same blonde curls. Seeing her now, you feel nothing.
You feel nothing and you love it, because a long time ago, you felt a lot. Even though nothing ever really happened with Emily, seeing her picture six or seven years ago would have busted you up inside. Your stomach would have jolted a little, a signal that this person actually meant something to you, a reminder that (at that moment, anyway) Emily Von Epp was not Just Another Someone.
When you see Emily’s picture, you consider that one day in the distant future, you might see a photo of your ex-girlfriend Maggie and not feel anything, and that makes you both hopeful and sad. On one hand, it won’t be like this forever (so devastating and impossible), and thank goodness for that. But on the other, how crazy to think that everything that lives inside you now could (and will) one day be reduced to nothing.
P.S. Sound familiar? Want to talk about it? Schedule your Coffeeshop Session today.
P.P.S. What if it’s just love?