Robot and I broke up this week. He tried to apply to all the jobs in Boston he could, but none of them panned out, and between his job ending, his rent being raised $700 a month, and all his friends leaving Boston, I am the only reason he had to stay. So, he's not. Instead he'll be subletting a room in New York for the next few months, and isn't sure what will come after that. He cares about me but needs time and space to figure his life out. I am settled into my life, with a job that is satisfying and a condo I love; he is in a different, much more tenuous place in his life.
All of this is very sad. I've never had a breakup quite like this before, where there was no feeling except for sadness. Usually it's a mix, a lot of sadness and a little bit of anger, or relief, or hurt, or "Well, I see now that we weren't really compatible." He's the first person I've dated who's been able to have real, adult conversations about his feelings, and even when he's being brutally honest ("I really like you but I need more time together to be CERTAIN about us"), it's refreshing. It's hard not to feel confused and angry about the arbitrariness of it all -- why did his damn landlord have to raise his rent now?? And why couldn't we have met a year, or two, or three ago? Or even 5 or 6 years ago, when we were both living in New York?
Because Robot is moving into a tiny Brooklyn room, and will be moving again shortly thereafter, he is purging all his worldly belongings. When I arrived at his house to tell him that we needed to stop seeing each other, he had a pile of things he had picked out waiting for me. I was too overwhelmed with emotion to think clearly and took all of it (except for that giant box of Ikea tealight candles that every single person seems to have erroneously thought at one point they needed, which I refused).
When I got home, I unpacked it all. There was a body pillow, a new winter coat (white, stained and a smidge too big for me), and two scarves that he had bought as gifts for his grandma but never had a chance to give her before she died. Then there was a book about digital photography and a not-very-good one about Belle and Sebastian. A NordicTrack that he'll deliver to my house sometime soon. And last but not least, a leopard print blanket with arms that his grandma gave him a few years ago. "I never want to see this again," he told me flatly while packing it up for me.
At least I've got a new outfit for my life as a single girl, once again.
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