I've never really given much thought to the baggage we carry around. Some people may be lucky and have very little in the way of emotional crap, but what about those that do? I bet a lot of people would think, 'oh, I don't have that much,'. Take a closer look. It's more than you think.
So what sparked this train of thought off in me? As I walked into town the other week I paused at the crossing (you know, not a big fan of getting run over by twats and really big buses) and couldn't help overhearing a conversation behind me. I would be a bare-faced liar if I said I didn't like eaves dropping. As a writer I get my inspiration from everywhere and I find the lives of other people fascinating. (I HATE reality TV - go figure) So anyway, there I was about to cross the road when another couple mosy on into hearing distance. A girl was saying something I didn't quite catch, but then the guy came out with a doozy: "My ex pulled a knife on me." Girl: "...oh?" Man: (chuckle) "It's why we're not together anymore." YA THINK?
Pretty much the rest of the afternoon all I could think about was that couple. My first initial reaction was to turn around and catch the girl's reaction. But being in Britain and all, didn't think I would get away with it. Plus didn't fancy my chances, who the hell know's what the guy was like? Maybe to know a psycho you gotta be one, ya know?
Anyhoo, I started feeling really sorry for the girl. In the beginning of most relationships the Ex File is a big deal. No one really wants to open it, but at the end of the day we are either too damn nosy for out own good, or closet masochists and just can't help ourselves. We gotta know where our current partner has been. Just gotta be done. My very first boyfriend (or the Asshole, as I fondly think of him) had a Hell Bitch Demon as an ex-girlfriend who had been known to - ahem - assert her violent side on frequent occasions. I'm not vain or anything, but I kinda like my face the shape it's in, thanks. (And girls, you know it, I know it, everyone know's it, we all hate the New Girlfriend. Almost as much as the Old Girlfriend) So I very much feared for my face when she found out I was dating her Ex. In the end, she was actually pretty cool and I started to really like her. Until I found out she was still fucking him...then she went down in my estimations ever so slightly.
So, yes, way off track now!
All I could think about was that poor girl. She probably was all happy in that beautiful new excited way a spanking new relationship is and oh, what's that? A big thunderous cloud to piss all over your happy feeling? Shit. Nothing like a knife-wielding Ex to take a piss on your parade. If I had been that girl, I'd have been terrified. What kind of guy was he? Surely he couldn't have been all that stable himself to go with such a girl. But then...the more I thought about it, I felt pretty sorry for him, too. He had done nothing wrong (that I knew of, anyway) so surely it isn't far to be judged fairly harshly on the acts of another person. He HAD to know that kind of statement would send a girl scampering off in the distance to search for a guy with less baggage. So here is my question: How much does baggage matter, and how much are we willing to take? A suitcase? Carry-on? Little clutch purse?
I think we all need to take a breather and stop judging people so harshly. Not easily done, It's not unusual for me to bail ship if I think something is gonna be too hard. What makes me think now is, it could be me. I have a fair amount of emotional baggage that I carted around for a LONG time before accepting things and setting it free. Don't get me wrong, I still have some issues but now they are manageable and more importantly, they don't show in my relationship. If I met a really nice guy that I thought I could fall for, it would really hurt for him to ditch me all because of things that have happened in the past. (I should mention here that I am married and in no way do I constitute affairs, this is all just hypothetical). Plus, if one day down the line I find myself a single mother, hello! Huge child-shape baggage! I find that things aren't as easy as they once were. Relationships are getting harder and baggage is becoming heavier. Maybe this is all part of growing up. Who can honestly say they have gotten to the end of their twenties and have no baggage? Slim few, I reckon.
So, again, guys. How much is too much and what does it matter?