Today I let go of two things. Both have, in different ways and at different times, played a big part in my life. Both have influenced how I’ve felt about my life and about myself. Both have bought joy as well as anguish. Both have had their moment and now is the right time to say goodbye.
The first of the things is Facebook. As I mentioned in my previous post, this has been brewing for a while. I found myself using it less and less, then getting irked whenever I did go on. I’ve also begun to think more about how we use the web and the way that the big internet firms affect our lives, becoming more uncomfortable with their control over how we see things. I knew it was time to let go when I found myself saying to someone on Friday that if I wasn’t already on then I wouldn’t join now – habit or routine being insufficient reason to stick at anything, let alone something that you question.
The second thing is less tangible than Facebook but feels possibly more significant. I have let go of my longest surviving crush. When I say longest, I genuinely do mean long – as a fraction or percentage of my life, I have harboured this crush for longer than I haven’t had it. Admittedly this has ebbed and flowed in intensity over the years, but at no point would I have doubted that he was my dream man if given the pick of anyone. Recently this idealisation (or perhaps that should be idolisation) has undergone a resurgence as I realised that the qualities that I most admire in this person could actually be a useful benchmark for thinking about any future partner – a sort of “what do I like and why” exercise. And therein lies the key. It’s taken almost seventeen years, but I’ve finally learnt the lessons that this crush had to teach me. All the things he embodies, all the qualities I admire in him, are what is important. This only occurred to me today. And with that moment of truth, while affection and admiration for him remain intact, my school girl crush evaporated.