Dr. L was in his desk, scanning my medical file as I walked through the door of his clinic. "How are you, Ryan?", he greeted me warmly.
"I'm generally fine, except for the terrible migraine attack that I had this morning.", I replied.
He took my blood pressure and my temperature, both of which registered normal. He then asked, "Did you drink last night?"
"I only had coffee, which put me to sleep."
"Not a drop," I proudly answered.
"Besides the coffee, what was the last thing you did before going to bed last night?"
"I wrote an email."
Trying to be funny, Dr. L declared, "That could've caused your migraine."
One hour past midnight, I received an unexpected sms from a man from my not-so-distant past. It read:
"I just read your blog. I didn't know until then that your contract wasn't renewed. I won't even say 'I hope you're ok.', coz I know you are. You're never not ok. I know that you will get yourself in a better place from here and I want you to know that I am proud of you, even as early as now, for the achievement that you are about to accomplish. I hope I am still allowed to be proud of you. I hope you don't hate me anymore."
After a short, yet emotional deliberation between my Id, my Ego and my Super-ego (with occasional intervention by my alter ego), I decided it wouldn't be too destructive to send him a response. I had already typed my opening sentence on my phone when I came up with a more appropriate way to answer him. I erased everything I had written and sent him the following message instead:
"Read your email tomorrow morning."
My email went:
"Hate is such a harsh word. To hate someone is a heinous thought. That's why I never hate. I dislike or abhor, but never hate. And even if my morals allowed me to hate someone, I will never have the will or the reason to hate you.____________________
I tried so hard to dislike you --- abhor you even. It was the easiest way to forget you. To stop myself from hoping you'd find it in your heart to give "us" one more chance. To stop myself from wondering what I could do to revive what we lost. I tried with all my might. I tried day in and day out. I failed. For despite how horrible our ending was, despite your flaws as a lover, and despite how frustrating it had been on my part to hold on to that thin strand of hope that broke eventually, I still can't deny that you are a wonderful person. Despite every reason I could find to be angry at you, the truth stands. And the truth is that you showed my family and friends nothing but love and kindness.
I may have learned to get over the thought of loving you romantically, and I may not see a lifetime partner in you anymore; But I have never learned to love you any less, and I haven't stopped seeing the beautiful soul you are made of."
Of course, I knew Dr. L was kidding when he said his last remark. But I just couldn't help but wonder, does love --- romantic or not--- have anything to do with it? My migraine, I meant.