This Is How It Feels To Be The Rebound


I remember seeing the pretty redhead in his old Facebook profile pictures. Aimee, or Amy, or something. He told me they’d broken up six weeks ago, which seemed a little soon. But I never saw any signs besides that.

Honestly, I thought this guy was the one. We moved fast, but I figured maybe that’s how the best love happens. We would text each other for hours. The first time we slept together, we spent the entire night making love and talking. We had so much in common. We had a strong connection. It was passionate.

And then it was nothing.

Our first date was at a coffee shop. Our conversation carried on long past our coffee cups were drained, so eventually left the noisy coffee shop and went for a walk. Then, having walked a few miles, we sat down on the riverbank and talked for hours. He was brilliant, and I was smitten. Eventually we kissed for what seemed like ages, my heart in my throat.

He smiled at me with his intelligent brown eyes, and I thought I’d finally found the perfect match.

Then, of course, there was the night we slept together, after watching a movie he’d picked. The time we stayed up and talked all night. I was not planning on sleeping with him. He took off my sweater and murmured ardently that I was beautiful, and I knew right then that I loved him. I couldn’t resist; I poured my heart out to him. I knew I was being reckless, but I didn’t care. I was just so sure it was the start of something for the ages.

He stopped texting me on a Monday. I texted him in reference to a poem he’d mentioned to me, and nothing. I figured he just needed space, or whatever, since we’d been moving pretty fast. Then his silence started to hurt. After three excruciating days, I texted him and asked if we were still hanging out Friday like we’d planned. Still nothing. I was starting to feel desperate, but I refused to act on those feelings on impulse. Finally, that night, I texted him asking what was going on with him, and, when I got no answer, angrily told him not to bother contacting me again.

I should have moved on. Instead, I spent a week in denial, thinking that he’d be back when he realized what he’d thrown away. After all, I was the kind of girl any guy would be lucky to have, and our connection was incredible. He’d have to be crazy to throw that away. So I wrote lovelorn poetry, continued to think of him as my soul mate, and imagined what I’d say when I saw him again. Of course, he’d have to work hard win back my trust, but he’d be back… right?

The truth hit me hard. One night, having still not heard from him, I decided to stalk him on Facebook again. I finally clicked on that redhead’s name, and saw that she’d changed her profile picture. The time stamp on it said, “23 hours ago.” It was an adorable couple’s picture of them playing the piano together. And just like that, in a sinking instant,

I realized I wasn’t the girl he’d regret. I was the girl he’d forget, the girl he’d used to sort out his feelings.

What can I say? At least I’m not the one who made the questionable moral decisions in the face of heartbreak. And you’d better believe I won’t now, not after Mr. Unavailable shattered my heart. Still, even though I lost sleep over him, and even though I got hurt needlessly, I can’t bring myself to regret what happened.

Sure, I jumped to conclusions like the hopeless romantic I am, and I learned that sleeping with a guy I really like too soon in a relationship is a terrible decision for me, emotionally. But it takes a little fearlessness to be as honest with someone as I was with him. It reminded me of just how much love I have to give someone, and I refuse to let him take that away from me.

And I suppose, in a way, he was honest with me too. After all, why would I want to be with someone who so callously toys with someone’s heart?

That pretty redhead can keep him.