So: Along with relationships come experiences, and along with experiences come memories. And when relationships end, and I think virtually everybody can attest to this, some of those memories become extremely painful. This means you find yourself not able to listen to certain music, or go to certain restaurants, or visit certain parks or streets or watch certain TV shows because it hurts too bad -- even just the hint of certain stuff coming on the radio makes your heart break in two, even years later. Right? Or, god help me, is it just me?
Sometimes you never get it back. There's stuff from Major Relationship #1 that I still can't listen to, including the song we played at our wedding (which, dammit, is on my favorite album of all time, and yeah, it's still kinda ouchie even 15 years later). I can't play Belle and Sebastian because it reminds me of breaking off Major Relationship #2 -- not that I was sad to see the ass-end of that sucker (I wasn't -- believe me), but listening to "If You're Feeling Sinister" brings back memories I'd rather not revisit, including time spent in the psych ward of a hospital eating mashed potatoes and yams because they couldn't figure out a vegetarian diet for their one suicidal hippie. Yay!
So what I've done recently is seized the bull by the horns. I've decided that I'm reclaiming each and every thing I lost in the proverbial fire. Mostly music, granted -- that's the worst of it, for me. I mean, who cares if you can't go to That One Perkins On The West Bank In Minneapolis anymore? Big whoop. But to be unable to listen to records you dig? GAHH -- that sucks.
Lemme tell ya: even if its making me stronger (and it is, believe me) it is frequently no damn fun at all. I mean, its fun AFTERWARDS, when suddenly you find yourself able to listen to "Apple Venus Vol. 2" and mostly be reminded of the ten trips to and from Venice, CA you took while listening to it rather than the time your ex threw a scissors at your head in a fight (true story!). But during? It sucks, because you have to relive memories that at best are sorta ouchie and at worst you've spent quality time trying to bury so deeply even the dog can't fucking find 'em.
Ultimately, though? I see a time when I'll be able to listen to every single record in my collection without any pain of the heart variety, and that's awesome. Might take me ten years and a heapin' helpin' of vodka and tears, but I'm gonna do it.