I experienced this today. I ran into an ex of mine. I was out in the city running errands. I recognized my ex as a cashier at the store I was in. I was tempted to pull the guy behind me in line and tell him to go next when she annouced that she was ready for the next person. That would have been childish, I know.
I stepped forwards, and said hello to her. I was all bundled up in winter clothing. My ex was ringing some purchases into a till. I kept my head down and hoped she didn’t see me. Was this childish of me? Perhaps. Maybe she didn’t recognize me.
Years ago, she was the second female I ended up dating. We were friends while I dated someone else. When my relationship ended, we became closer friends. We started dating soon after. She went through the whole, “I love you. I’m gay, be my girlfriend.” to “You’re never there for me” (we lived over an hour apart). Our relationship progressed and in the second month of dating I met her parents who seemed nice but couldn’t believe their daughter was dating a young woman instead of a young man. We went out together on dates,held hands and did all the other things couples do. Some people where we lived called us dykes when they saw us holding hands (I love how mature men can sometimes be). Some guy tried to tell me to grow my hair out to be more beautiful. My girlfriend then stopped texting me. Communication became very difficult and she was not able to have conversations face to face. It became a very dysfunctional relationship, and our communication was so poor she was not even able to speak with me via text about her feelings. It was “I dunno” every time I asked a question even when I was trying to be gentle asking things. When I asked if she wanted to break up, it was “no”. I don’t want to assume she cheated on me, but I know that I couldn’t deal with a relationship like that. When she told me she needed a break finally, I was able to grieve. Hey, I was young, and it was my second same sex relationship. Kind of intense. She left me with “I need a break” and I knew what that meant even though it should have been said like “I am breaking up with you” to show finality.
Well anyway, I said hello to her. To me, she looked the same. I wonder if she recognized me, if I would look the same to her? I think some times we are snap shots in the lives of one another for a reason. We are there to teach each other things about ourselves, other people or find meaning in different ways. She played a snapshot part in my life, and now I can say that I am not the same young woman that I was when I dated her years ago. I know that I’ve grown.
Sometimes I think back and wonder how my exes are doing. Most of my past relationships involving exes that left me heartbroken, I still wish them well. They played a part in my life. I played a part in theirs. We went our separate ways and have (hopefully) grown into something better.