La Petite Mort

“Each relationship when it ends really damages me; I never fully recover. That’s why I’m very careful with getting involved because…it hurts too much.”  – Celine, Before Sunset

Like Celine, I never completely heal from the ending of a relationship.  It leaves an open wound.  After 20 years of enduring these little traumas, I’ve gone into shock, unable to feel, to grasp my reality.  I’ve told you before that a piece of my heart resides with J.  He carries it with him now – and mine is diminished by the same amount.  I wonder if perhaps not just J has taken my heart, but every person with whom I’ve bonded – family, friends and lovers.  Each person cuts off a little piece, like a butcher slicing meat, sliver by sliver.

Now I sit here, hollow, the pieces of my heart scattered and consumed by those I’ve let in.  Is anything left beneath my breastbone?  I can’t seem to feel anymore.  I’m spent – a shell.

The French call an orgasm “la petite mort”, the little death.  Perhaps emotional bonds are as well.


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