The One That Got Away

IT recently dawned upon me that two little words were engulfing my life. ‘What if’ had become a constant train of thought and that heavy cargo load was stuck on a roundabout. What if I went with my heart instead of my head? What if I told him how I felt? Or the one most relevant to my life in the moment– what would have happened if I wasn’t so drunk?

Take Sam, for example. For months I blamed myself for it all going horribly wrong between him and I. To put Sam in context, we both fell for each other even though we were in relationships at the time. This was worsened by the fact that we were all in the same group of friends. Eventually, we both ended up leaving our partners for each other. I had broken up with my boyfriend by exactly a week when Sam asked me to be his girlfriend there and then or no offer. I said no. This was back in the day when I cared too much about my reputation and was worried what others would think of this convenient timing. Him and his ego went off in a huff and never wanted to see or talk to me again. Devastated, I kept giving out to myself for not just going for it. What might have happened if I had said yes? Perhaps I would still be with him and be happy. I somehow, in my rosy cloud of optimism, failed to imagine the far more likely option: I would, by now, be just another name on the extended list of failed relationships this particular boy now has.

I was recently at breakfast with a close friend and our very cute waiter instantly caught our attention. Just from the ‘hello’ he had us drooling over his very sexy American accent. I very maturely called ‘dibs’. We made excessive requests for unnecessary items for our table so that we could get to know this little blonde waiter a little better. It was obvious he was enjoying the attention and even made us some egg-nog and gave us a present of some of his favourite cake. He was smiling, chatty and not doing very much work because of us. Then he went on his break. And it was definitely time for us to leave. I had two options. Either walk out the door and wonder ‘what if’ or be bold and leave my number on a napkin like they do in cheesy movies. Encouraged by my friend I took the second option. Guess what? Mr Sweet Talking waiter didn’t call me.

There is a lot to be said for closure. Ironically, we would rather that guy text us a horrible message that said he wasn’t interested instead of not replying. It is so much easier when something goes so horribly wrong in a relationship that it is beyond any point of return. After years of pulling my hair out imagining the best possible scenario that I may have missed out on, I have decided to get rid of this damning regret and think of these ‘ones who got away’ as more of ‘ones that weren’t meant to be’. And that is the best closure a girl can have.

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