There's this guy at my gym who tries to talk to me every time I go in there. The first time I saw him, he smiled and said hello, and I said hi to be polite. The second time, he called me "little lady" (apparently, he got his pickup lines from Western movies that were made in the 1950s) and said, "Hi, I've seen you around here a lot." I merely said, "Yeah," and walked away.
It was rude of me to do that, but I just wasn't interested. I must admit that one reason is because he looks like he's about three hundred pounds. I wish I could say that looks don't matter, but physical attraction is important, though of course, it's not the most important thing. I think it's good that he's working out and trying to lose weight, though.
You'd think that would have ended it, but he still tries to talk to me a lot. The last time, he literally stepped in front of the stationary bike I was on and waved at me, even though I had my headphones on. I didn't smile or say anything, and he walked off.
That's why I no longer work out at night and started getting up earlier to work out at the gym in the morning instead. And that's where, one morning a couple weeks ago, I saw the Model.
I didn't know he worked out there, but I recognized him from far away. I'd had fantasies of seeing him again, though preferably when I was fashionably dressed, at least twenty pounds thinner and hand in hand with Ryan Gosling's long-lost twin, not when I was in sweaty gym clothes and with my hair pulled back in a ponytail.
I debated going up to him. I knew I would regret it if I didn't, so I finally mustered up the courage to do so at the end of my workout. We talked for a few minutes. I told him that I had cancelled my Tinder membership, and I asked if he was still on it. I must admit that I was curious to find out if he was dating someone else. "Not really," he said. "I've been working all the time, so I've been really busy."
I wanted to say that I still wanted to be with him and that I still thought about him a lot. I wanted to ask why he'd ghosted me ("ghosting" is apparently a way that a lot of Millennials break up with each other, where they don't even have "the talk" but just stop responding to messages). I wanted to say that I'd felt nothing but numb for so long and that he was the first man I'd felt anything real for in a long time, and it broke my heart that he no longer wanted to be with me.
But I didn't. I remembered how a couple months ago, I'd texted him on two separate days about seeing him again, and how he didn't answer either time. It was painful enough to be rejected like that over the phone, and it would be even worse to be rejected in person.
I also thought of the guy at the gym whose persistent advances made me change my exercise routine; I didn't want to be like him. He reminded me of this woman who comments on almost every single one of the Model's posts on Instagram (I know I shouldn't look at his posts, but I still do, sometimes). She leaves long, personal comments that reveal details about her life, her admiration for his muscular physique, and pleas for him to DM (direct message) her. She must have begged him to chat with her online at least half a dozen times, and he obviously never has or she wouldn't keep asking. He usually doesn't respond to her at all or merely says "thank you" to her compliments. I didn't want to be like her either. I didn't want to become the person who can't or won't take a hint..
Finally, he smiled and said, "It's good to see you," and he hugged me. I hugged him back and walked away, even though I would have been happy to keep talking to him that day, and every day.
In my previous fantasy of seeing him again, I'd harbored the hope that it would rekindle his feelings for me. It didn't. I haven't talked to him much since then, except to say hi in passing at the gym.
I don't know why it's been so hard to get over him, especially since we didn't date for that long. There's also the fact that I knew in my heart that I wanted more than what he was willing to give. I've had unrequited crushes before and I was able to come to terms with them and move on, but this is different. I suspect that this will take longer. I think it's partly because I slept with the Model, whereas I wasn't intimate with my other unrequited crushes.
I tried dating other guys, and at least half of the guys I've dated in the last three months wanted to keep dating me. Several other guys I talked to on Bumble and Tinder were interested in meeting me too. But I rejected all of them for various reasons, and one major reason was that I wasn't over the Model. I didn't feel that it was fair to form a relationship with someone while I was still thinking about someone else.
That's also one of the reasons why I've decided to take a break from dating, so that I can focus on work and so that I won't keep watching videos like this one (though I do like the song):
I know I need to move on with my life, but it's hard to do that when the person you're trying to forget is all over the Internet (he's become even more popular on Instagram, accumulating thousands of followers in just the past month), who also lives in the same town as you, and who goes to your gym. But on the other hand, I know that if and when he leaves town someday, it would make me feel even worse because then I would never see him again.
Side note: I can't afford to switch to a new gym. I can't change my workout routine again because the only other time is the afternoon, which is when I'm teaching or have office hours. And I don't want to go back to exercising at night and run the risk of running into the Guy Who Won't Take a Hint again, at least not until I've learned karate.
What about you? Has it ever taken you a long time to get over someone? What kinds of things did you do to get over that person?
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