I like going back to old conversations.
Letter-writing went out of fashion a generation or two before us. Today, we neither have the perfume nor the handwriting. We have nothing to touch, nothing to hold. I would rather keep turning pages and pages of long, long letters but I try to make do with what we've got.
I scroll up our chat-archive; up, up and up until I find conversations garnished generously with " :P ". Then, I scroll down slowly to find more " :) ". It may mean nothing but to me it marks an important transition. It's when the need to pretend you were just kidding when you said something nice gave way to saying it, and letting me know that you really meant it.
The conversation never ends. I know when you woke up and what you did all day. I know where you went, with whom you were, what you ate, what made you angry and when you slept. It really isn't a lot of important information but it made me feel really special knowing the ordinary things about somebody.
I like going back to old conversations especially those that we pretend never happened; those that we will never have again. I go back to them to find some lost happiness; and I do, but now it is tinged with pain. Not intense; but chronic.
So much has changed. It is awkward to even say "hi" anymore. Wouldn't it be better if we pretended to not know each other when we meet now? It feels worse to just shake hands and meet like acquaintances. But it doesn't matter. You and I will just be a fraction of all the letting go we will have to do in our respective lives.
Have I let go? I like to think that I most certainly have. It isn't really about reminiscing anymore or even regretting. It is more about acceptance that all this is a part and parcel of life. Some stories find their conclusions while others just meander their way into oblivion.
If I have let go, why do I still go back to our old conversations? It is a tough one to explain, but I think I go back to feel sane. It would drive you crazy to feel a great pain in your shoulders for no reason, but if you saw your dismembered arms, it'd make sense that it hurts. The old conversations will always bear testimony to the fact that there was something we let go of.
An evening by myself usually leads my thoughts to strange places. I'd much rather step out, get a good cup of coffee, and find someone to have new conversations.