Whoever said "It is better to have loved and lost, than to never have loved at all" either never suffered a broken heart, or never had to drive a car. Possibly both.
A pox on all those who would break your heart; a double pox with halitosis for those who break your heart, and who should know better.
When you get in a bad relationship, when you finally get out, you feel nothing but relief (oh, and a few niggly other emotions but you get over those fairly soon). But what happens when a good relationship fails? Those hurt the most. The pain may lessen over time, but I don't think it ever truly goes away.
I once had a relationship I thought was going to last forever. Apparently he had other ideas, and things came to an end. (Entirely his fault, and he'll even admit to it.) Interesting story, if you're someone else, but one I'll save for another time.
So he (as if I had much choice in the matter) ended it, and the damage was done, and my heart was shattered into a whole bunch of tiny little sharp pieces that pierced my body every time I drew a breath. If only I could have stopped breathing entirely.
So one day I find myself driving to school, my mind entirely not on the road. Next thing I know, my car has slowed down and moved over to the side of the road. It drifts to a stop, and I don't care. All I can do is cry. All the other cars go whizzing by, unaware of who I was, or what I suffered. Eventually, I made it to school, but I learned, the easy way, that one should never drive with a broken heart.
Sometimes I think it was sheer habit that got me to school that day, for it certainly wasn't conscious thought. For all I know, I could have ended up in Calgary before I knew what was going on.
The only way I made it home was to take my sorrow and turn it into rage. For the half-hour drive home, I chanted, "bastard, bastard, bastard," and kept my eyes open for any other car in the area, imagining them to run him over.
The next day I took the bus and it was at least a few months before I trusted myself to get behind the wheel of a car for a trip longer than ten minutes, or without another passenger.
If I had gotten into an accident, it would have been considered my fault, at least, legally. But we know who was truly at fault. Shame the law couldn't recognise and make culpable the one who breaks your heart.
Lilith Demhareis is an ex-pat bunny living in Australia, where she takes good care that her heart doesn't get broken -- although it does get bruised from time to time. Next time: Bureaucracy.