First: I don't know what to feel about this email. It disturbed me enough to throw me off my work flow. Some tears might also have materialised in my eyes; but I don't know - or rather, I didn't know what I was affected by, or what had affected me. I genuinely have no feelings whatsoever towards him, or my relationship with him, or the shit that he did to me. I genuinely do not care anymore; it is in the past, and it should stay in the past, buried deep in the ground.
The email, then, was effectively NEB taking a spade to the place where the past had been buried, digging out its decomposed remains, and placing it on my table where it then proceeded to stink up the entire room. The putrid stench of the rotting past is both unpleasant and a shock to the system. To say that he was the last person I would ever expect to hear from is no small exaggeration; in my mind, it was more likely for G to contact me than NEB. Hell, it was even more likely for the French prick to contact me than NEB.
He dedicated a few paragraphs to what happened between us. The gist of it is that he is sorry for what he did. The thing is, I got this memo when we met in December 2012 when I was home for Christmas break, so the purpose of his apology was obviously more self-directed and had less to do with making me 'feel better' about the past. That is fair enough. You do whatever you need to do to find the necessary cathartic release and closure.
However, I would be lying if I said that it didn't bring back memories. They are not memories of him, or of my relationship with him, or how I felt about him...or rather, more accurately, they are of how I felt about him, but these feelings are now encrusted in the dust of time, and I have no intention whatsoever to clean off the dirt. I remember the name that I gave them; I remember that I was in love with him; but I don't understand any of it. I don't understand how I could have done it to myself. I don't understand at all how thoroughly I debased myself for a man who was incapable of loving me.
That, essentially, is the thing that remains heartbreaking to this day. It is not about what he did; it is about what I accepted and what I made myself live with. It is about what I did to myself. It is probably true in a sense that, in respect of this current mutation of my memories of my feelings for him, I will never really get over it.
Second: I think that the last time I felt pure love for someone was when I was with Wei Chuen. I mean this in the sense that the love that I had for him was full, whole-hearted, unburdened by the weight of my experiences. It sounds odd to say that it was pure, given that I had gone through the shit episode with NEB. Nevertheless, I was really all-in; I was in for the long haul; I thought that he was it. This is what I mean by the purity of my love.
Now, I don't know what I am doing. I am consciously avoiding forming an emotional connection with Dominic not because I don't think it's possible, but because I don't know what the point is. If life after Cambridge doesn't tear this apart, then our fundamental difference will, and if all else fails, there's the very real possibility that I would lose interest after a while. That's been the pattern of my last few relationships, hasn't it? Distance, loss of interest, fundamental incompatibility. It is emotionally exhausting. I am more comfortable opening up emotionally to John or Barry; I tell them things that I don't tell Dominic. It is cowardly, perhaps, but I like the way things are now. I like keeping it at arm's length a little, preserving a part of myself for myself, and not surrendering the intimate to this thing between us just yet. I am really tired of things that end. And I have little confidence that this wouldn't eventually end, too.
I'm not sure if it's a good thing that I don't tell him any of these things. It is probably not a good thing. I suppose I am not inclined to sharing the burden with him because I don't want to complicate things. I like the simplicity of our interaction (by that I mean the lack of drama, not the content of our conversation, which is anything but simplistic) and for a change, I would like it to last for as long as possible before things inevitably become complicated. I don't bring up our fundamental religious difference, I don't ask him what his expectations are, I don't tell him that I'm tired of failed relationships and that I am actually looking for something that will finally end in marriage. I don't say any of these things because I am not yet equipped to deal with the fall out. I am not ready to stop seeing him. I know that it is very selfish of me, but I can't - I don't want to - stop.
NEB was not quite right when he suggested that my phase of sleeping around in London was attributable to him. In fact, he had nothing to do with it. Those random men embodied the destruction of my love for Wei Chuen, and although I have stopped the random sex, I am still reeling from the after shocks of the end of that relationship. It is presently unclear whether I have forgiven myself for my actions, but beyond that, I seem incapable of loving someone in the way that I loved him, incapable of opening up to someone the way that I opened up to him, incapable of believing in a relationship in the way that I believed in ours. NEB hardened my heart to men like him; Wei Chuen stamped out the hope and faith that I had.
I am not sure what my point is anymore. I am exhausted. I really want to read Julian Barnes, so I will stop indulging in these useless thoughts and go to bed.