It’s pretty fair to say that in the past, we’ve all been burnt by previous relationships. In fact, that’s why we refer to them as previous. If we’re no longer within them, then obviously something went wrong. It’s something of a rare occurance when you have a relationship that parts amicably. Either you mutually just lose interest and can easily part ways, returning your relationship to friends. Or, you end up with a very messy break-up, the likes of which will go down in the annals of local lore as gossip. I’ve had both. I was lucky enough to part amicably with a couple of girls, and on the other hand, I’ve also had some knock-down drag-out fights with exes that would place me way out of character to those who know me very well. I don’t want to get off on a rant here, but I’m going to anyway.

I recall a conversation a while back, when Abbie, one of my friends and exes, looked at me and said, “You’re damaged goods.” At the time, I didn’t quite know what to do with that statement, and I recall thinking about it for a great deal of time, because in a sense… aren’t we all damaged goods? We all survive bad choices and relationships and the hope is after each one, we want to look back at them and learn from those mistakes. But, how in the hell can you learn from a mistake, when you can’t apply it to the next relationship? Do we make a general assumption about the opposite gender and just say “This is so?” I’m not quite sure about that, because each person is different. Sure, we have some sort of weak frame of personality archetypes, but in the end, the individual personalities are too varies to really put some sort of demarkation against it. Even with all these personality quizzes and four-letter abbreviations of ENTJ or INTP, how can we really try and let others define us when we spend our whole lives trying. Does it give us some sort of sick forfillment to apply a title and say, “I’m (this),” just so we’ll feel better about it?

Where do we draw the line? What is it about fear that grips us so tightly that we’ll do or say the wrong thing in order to satisfy a sense of protection against future pain? Life is pain, to steal a phrase from a good movie. Pain lets us know we’re still alive. If we’re going to go through life by protecting ourselves from pain, then we’re really not living as much as we should. As for me, last night I had a conversation that ended up with me tossing and turning all through the night because I had said some things that made me sound like I was pretty much closing up shop and not willing to risk anything anymore. With anyone. I remember a time when I was much younger and I felt like I could take on the world and not worry about the consequences of my actions. With age supposedly comes wisdom, but in reality, I think with age comes a whole hell of a lot of baggage clearly marked “THE PAST.” When is it all right to let that shit go and move on? I don’t know. But maybe now is that time for me. The past is history, and I study the past with great passion. My own personal past holds for me a lot of experience and some minor wisdom learned the hard way. I’m going to try and take the wisdom, and leave the crap where it belongs.