When I was a child, I lived on the Atlantic Ocean. I loved walking on the wet sand and seeing the footsteps I left behind. I loved to see the rippling waves moving ever towards me, criss-crossing themselves to reach the shore, and then swirling around my ankles before pulling whatever they could back out to sea.
I remember digging my toes down in to the sand, and feeling the waves erode the foundation right out from under my feet. I suppose that’s how I could have felt yesterday when I got my ex-boyfriend’s text.
“When would be a good time to talk?”
I stared at the phone for a minute.
“Umm. Are you ok?” I typed back.
I thought to what could be wrong: something medical, the passing of a family member or friend, a bill collector trying to track down my ex-husband.
Rather than be distracted all day at work, I stepped outside and gave him a call.
He apologized for bothering me at work – he hadn’t meant to upset me. He asked how I was doing and I was able to say confidently, “Great – and you?”
Really good, he said. And then he told me he and the woman he had left me for were getting engaged. They would marry in December.
“When it’s right, it’s right.”
I wished him all the best and we got off the phone. I would be lying if I didn’t say I was surprised. One of the major reasons why our relationship ended was because he had stated that he didn’t see himself ever wanting to live with someone else, let alone get married.
It’s funny how things change.
Had I gotten this news even a few weeks ago, I might have been angry and bitter and devastated. I would have felt the tide pull away my foundation. But the same waves that took him away, brought something better back to me. And I’ve picked it out of the tides and have taken it home with me.
As I told a friend when discussing it, it just doesn’t make sense to hold on to what has ended – it just delays me from grasping hold of what can be.
Whether it be the waves below, or the ocean of stars above, I cannot regret losing what was never mine to have. I will enjoy the things the waves brought in and out of my life, and my voyages on this life’s sea.
So, in the words of Jean-Luc Picard, Engage Number One!