Sta Hungry Stay Foolish

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

The pain of a first name

29 November 2019


Late Wednesday evening, just before midnight, a new Possibly Maybe crossed my path. She sent me a message that she is interested in me. She lives in my neighbourhood, which was a nice surprise. From a dating perspective, I seem to be living in no woman’s land. Everything changed when she mentioned her first name.

Any name brings back memories (see below). Some of them are sweet; others are sour. Occasionally, a name is almost repulsive. I wrote “oops” to her and explained my situation. She understood and stated that she behaves the same way: ignoring such a person (eg, swiping left), even though she has no negative connotations with her former husband’s first name.

I know that I’m projecting my pain onto the first name of my former wife. A new person cannot help carrying that same name. Nevertheless, I cannot imagine making love to someone with her name. Similarly, I cannot imagine introducing a new girlfriend with that first name to my family. My mother would probably bluntly ask if I’ve gone mad. That name caused too much pain.

I know I could try getting used to that name again. I know doing that might be self-punishment. I think I’m not ready for it. For some time, I’ve been wondering whether I’ve forgiven her for what she did. I thought I had but I’m less sure nowadays. I know forgiving and forgetting are separate actions. Forgetting is impossible. Forgiving should be possible.

I suppose dating someone, with the same first name as a previous partner, feels like jinxing our fate. Likewise, few people walk under ladders. The origin of this superstition is unclear. Any new break-up, with a person carrying that same first name, would only increase our superstition. Statistically, a break-up is quite more likely than a happy ending.

Since my relocation, there is zero chance on a random encounter, like early 2019 in a Grand Café. Shortly after noticing me, she and her date were gone, similar to the 1974 Sparks song “This town ain’t big enough for the both of us” (lyrics, video).

There might come a time (lyrics, music) when we must meet again. I’m not looking forward to it, although there will be no confrontation. She is like the air that I breathe – in and out (lyrics, video). I cannot even imagine anymore, having been with her for more than 20 years. Painful memories are all that remain (lyricsvideo).

Memories (2019) by Maroon 5

artists, lyrics, video, Wiki-1, Wiki-2

There’s a time that I remember, when I did not know no pain 

When I believed in forever, and everything would stay the same 

Now my heart feel like December when somebody say your name 

‘Cause I can’t reach out to call you, but I know I will one day, yeah

Note: all markings (bolditalicunderlining) by LO unless stated otherwise


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