A New Year Doesn’t Change You, You Change You

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There I was. New Years Day with my right cheek plastered to the bathroom floor. I expected this would be the outcome. In my baggy band tee and granny panties, I sweated and puked out all my liquor from the eve before. Then I heard it; a female voice talking to him. It was 8:30am, which means she slept over, which means they fucked.

My eyes widened as if I couldn’t believe what I was actually hearing. I fixed my sweaty strands of hair back onto the top of my head. Was I really hearing it? Her voice, through my bathroom floor vent? I leaned away from the toilet, wiped the vile guck off my mouth and rested on my side, my ear pressed to the vent for more. I could hear the entire conversation. Her voice.

Her voice talking to him. Complaining about how he keeps throwing away her hair-ties. That was once me talking to him, sitting on his bed, smirking at the way he scratches his lower back when he’s nervous, and kissing his sweet stubble in the morning. But now it was her. He cheated on me for her.

I sat up again, distancing myself from the vent and back to the toilet. I was hoping the emptying of my system would clear out the jostling feeling in my stomach, wrong. It might’ve been the aching hungover feeling or the fact that my ex-boyfriend/landlord was fucking his ex…again and I could hear it, but I started tearing up. Not sobbing, but tearing up. One of those cries you get when you listen to a song that reminds you of someone you lost. I wiped a tear away with my bath towel gently hanging behind my sweaty head and pushed the bathroom door fully shut. I needed to be alone. With the toilet, my ex boyfriend, and his new girlfriend (or should I say recycled?)

The sadness always came quick when I thought about him. I was sad that I wasn’t it for him. That I wasn’t enough. That I didn’t make him as happy as she did. That I wouldn’t get to eat salads on the couch with him and help him shovel the snowy driveway. She took that from me.

I hated all the bullshit I heard that day about the New Year. It was just another day for me. Another day of living with the pain of things that have happened. Another day alone with myself. And that was my problem. I relied on other people for happiness, to fill me up, and give me purpose. I spent too much time trying to make someone else happy by pushing myself to be perfect. Many years, I’ve relied on the New Year, to make me feel better about myself, to make me stop doing dumb shit.

But, the truth is a year doesn’t change you, you change you.

And no matter how much you go to the gym or eat a piece of Kale or plunge in a serene bubble bath, you still might wake up on Sunday morning, puking your guts out, and stick your ear to the bathroom floor vent so you can hear your ex talk to someone else.

Maybe I will never let it go. Two days later and I’m lying on the bathroom floor again, stomach down, ear to the vent listening to her ask him how his day was. I should’ve stopped right there and asked myself how MY day was. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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