A friend of mine keeps getting back together with her Ex, even though she admits he is not good for her. I got all judge-y and gossipy about it with another friend who said, “I guess we all have an Ex we go back to.”
I’ve never gone back to an Ex of the male persuasion, primarily because I’m a spectacular grudge holder, a keeper of a list of All Wrongs Done To Me Ever. (I know, I know, I’m working on it.) But I stalk other good-for-nothing’s I’ve broken up with, and I usually end up getting back together with them.
I hook up with sugar when I’m hungry for more than life is serving me. I get engaged to the TV when I’m bored. I flirt with my phone when I’m not having fun, and I go on surfing dates with the Internet when I don’t want to deal with The Real.
I know these things are leading me on, promising to fill a hole WHICH THEY NEVER DO, which is why I broke up with their sorry butts in the first place. But then: LIFE, and suddenly I’m an amnesiac, stuck in a rut of bad behaviors, thinking this time eating a bag of candy corns is going to make me feel better. They’ve changed! They’ve grown up! They’re no longer made of sugar, corn syrup, confectioner’s glaze, dextrose, honey, and nineteen other forms of sugar! Now they are made of broccoli!
Why do I succumb to their charm and fall into their arms again and again?
It feels good. The saying, “familiarity breeds contempt,” does not apply to toxic habits, instead they feel like friends who get me. The kind of friend that makes you feel less lonely and uncomfortable because they’re just as dysfunctional as you are. Quinoa does not get me. Celery does not get me. But Snickers? They get me.
I have a fear of scarcity. I loathe lack. Physical lack, emotional lack, lack of constant positive affirmation, lack of appropriate bowing down to me by the humans in my house. I feed my face rather than face my feelings, check out of life and check into TV and social media to escape the madness and the loneliness.
I deserve it. All. Day. Long. I’ve dealt with demanding, irrational, emotional
teenagers people, terrible traffic, an imploding uterus, and DRIVERS WHO CAN NOT DRIVE, all the while denying myself CARBS. Now it’s 5 o’clock (somewhere) and I deserve that glass of wine. Or two. And all of the cheese in the house. And Real Housewives of Orange County. And many, many, candy corns.
It’s what I do. The route to my Ex’s is a well worn path, the path of least resistance. I’ve driven it so many times, I don’t even realize how I got there until I wake up in the morning so full of regret my jeans don’t fit.
I think we can be friends. I tell myself, There’s nothing inherently wrong with a little “something something.” I don’t drink every night. Everything in moderation. A few hours in front of the TV isn’t a big deal. All true. But I’d never go to a party with an ex-boyfriend who lied to me and made me feel terrible, so why should I hangout with these losers?
Everything is permissible, but not everything beneficial, and if we become slaves to it, then its time to breakup. Like forever. Like we are never ever getting back together.
Caveat: I’m not going to break up with TV, or Buzz Feed videos, or those super important life altering Facebook quizzes (what type of Disney dog are you?) or sugar, or cheese, or candy corns (gah!) forever unless God asks me to, because the last thing I need is another self-imposed self-improvement project to make me feel like I’m in control WHEN I’M NOT. But I will ask him. Probably after the holidays. Because, cookies. But I will seek His Will in this, because this struggle is bull crappy. I’m tired of holding hands with habits that steal, kill, and destroy my joy.
What are your thoughts? Do you have lousy lovers in your life that need to be kicked to the curb? Do you find yourself reaching for comfort from things you know are not good for you? Have you found a way to like, forever, break up with no good habits? What worked? What didn’t?
Thanks for taking to time to read my brain words.