the ex-box

For almost a year now, most of my belongings have been packed away in boxes due to things that were out of my control (but you don’t have all day for THAT story!). Recently I decided to go through said boxes and make an assessment of things that I want to keep and things that could get thrown out. My mother was obviously thrilled since these boxes were keeping her from using her mud room closet.
As I sifted through the boxes and looked through the things I have collected in my lifetime thus far, I couldn’t help but laugh at some of the things I found; things that at one point I didn’t think I could live without or thT held some sentimental place in my heart. However there was one item that had a strange effect on me. I knew what it was the minute I saw it. My ex-box.
Most girls will know what I’m talking about. It’s the box. The box that holds every little trinket or memento from a broken relationship. I knew this box well. It was the oldest and most full one I have (yes, there are two). This box was from high school; from the longest relationship I’ve been in; from the only relationship I’ve said “I love you in”. It’s been almost six years since that relationship ended. I hold no attachments to it other than this box. I look back on it with fondness and no ounce of hard feelings. So of course I opened the box, curious to see what I had kept all these years.
There were the usual things: pictures, small gifts, cards; those things that were so important to me so many years ago. I began reading some of the cards, still out of curiosity. Many of them were pretty straightforward:


Hallmark words
Hallmark words
Hallmark words

Love, ****
However, two of them were not so simple. Two of them were apology cards. They were heartfelt and thought through. Specific words were chosen to get the apology across. Words like “I’m so sorry” and “You were right”, which any girl obviously likes to read! Then there were other words. Again, words that any girl, including this one at the time, would love to read. Words like “I love you so much” and “You are my heart”. This last one really got me. You are my heart. When I read it I immediately became uncomfortable; almost awkward in my own skin. It’s hard to describe really. It’s almost as though I’ve forgotten what it’s like to be loved and cared for that much. From a guy that is. Sure I’ve had relationships since this one; some great, some not so great. Each of them unique and yet similar in the fact that none of them have reached that same place. A few had the potential to but for whatever reason, be it timing or the guy or what have you, never went to a place of “I love you” or even a year’s span. I’m not bitter or depressed about this. What’s happened has happened and I’m a firm believer in everything happening for a reason.Β 
I guess the moral of the story is that I didn’t expect to feel so uncomfortable when I read those cards. It seems so long ago. Those words are foreign to me now. Or maybe it’s not so much the words as it is the feelings that went with them. {epiphany} It’s been six years since I’ve dove in and really been immersed in someone and vice versa. Six years. Maybe it’s been me, maybe it’s been the guys. I don’t really know. I do know that I want it again someday. A recent “almost” relationship proved to me that I’m capable of beginning to feel that way, or at least being open to it. While this “almost” relationship didn’t turn into an actual relationship, I found myself opening up in ways that I hadn’t in a very long time.
So I know I’m capable. I know it’s out there, somewhere. And right now, knowing is enough for me.

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