He Cannot Be Your Happiness

Apr 4, 2015 by

“He makes you the oxymoron of yourself.”

– A friend


          It was September 11, 2014. I remember the exact date because it was my second last day at my old work. I was walking around the office in a white V-neck, a grey pencil skirt, and black stilettos because I happened to have time to make an effort that morning. It was one of those days that you know you look hot – on the outside. On the inside, I was just a hot mess. I was two and a half weeks from Paris, I missed him, and there was absolutely nothing I could do about it.

          “Hey, do you have a few minutes?” I asked as I slid my hands behind my skirt to take a seat beside one of my coworkers. “It’s not work-related.”

          “Yeah, of course!” she said. “Do you have a date tonight?” she wondered like everyone else that day.

          “No, I wish,” I laughed.

          “What’s up?”

          I picked her to talk to because she could relate. She had been in a similar situation for longer than I had, so not only did I know she’d empathize with how I felt, I knew she’d be able to stop me from doing something stupid. I knew I’d respect her advice, because it was coming from personal experience, rather than just the perspective of a concerned friend.

          “I’m going to be gone for at least three months,” I said, as she already knew. (Of course, this was before I knew I’d be flying home from Paris just five weeks after my arrival.) “I want to see him. Is it really that bad if I reach out?”

          “I think it’s sexier if you don’t,” she said, making me smile.

          I liked her approach. Most people would go the route of telling me how desperate I’d look if I did. I was desensitized to desperation by that point. I had already laid all of my pride out on the line. By telling me what I could embody by maintaining my distance, however, she made me feel like I still had some dignity left to hold.

          “Looking at you and reading your blog,” she continued, “you’re on this quest for happiness, and this guy isn’t doing anything to help that. In fact, he’s doing the opposite, so you need a clean break. Take off the jacket,” she said as she brushed off her shoulder for dramatic effect, “and leave it behind while you go to Paris. You’re a beautiful girl, you’re smart, you take risks, and you’re adventurous. Even as a female, I’m intimidated, so thinking about that from a male’s perspective . . .”

          I blushed. I didn’t believe that he was intimidated by me, but I appreciated her compliments.

          “Don’t fall for him,” she warned. “He could come to you one day and tell you that he’s been stupid, that he really likes you and wants to date you, and – look at you!” she interrupted her own point. “You’re smiling! I’m not even him, and you’re smiling!”

          “I know!” I laughed. “I hate it!”

          Somehow, maybe because a quarter-life crisis fast-forwards time, it’s been over half a year since that conversation with my old coworker. As was the case then, he’s not physically present now. Perhaps that’s for the better.

          “This is not you,” another friend told me as I cried to her through the phone. “You are not insecure. You are confident in every aspect of your life until he comes around. No one should make you this disheveled. You are your happiness,” she reminded me of my own perspective on life. “He cannot be your happiness. He cannot be the reason behind your giddiness. That is against everything you stand for. He makes you the oxymoron of yourself. You can’t have him and be the person you are, and that itself should tell you something.”

          “You’re right,” I said, wiping my tears.

Happiness Tip: It’s sexier if you don’t.

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