10 November 2008

Ireland is Brilliant!

There's nothing like a trip to Europe with a good friend to pull you out of a depression. And there's nothing like coming home to pull you right down that dark hole again.

From Nov. 3-9 I was in Ireland with my friend and sorority sister, Taran. We booked and planned our trip to the Emerald Isle about two weeks before we left. I was offered a new job and decided that I needed to go away for a while before slaving away in New York and selling my soul to the Satan that is Corporate America. Ireland was an obvious choice for one very specific reason. J and I had talked about going on a bike tour around the island next summer (he rode 300 miles on his bike around Ireland about 10 years ago, so we would retrace his route). I needed to know that I could go to Ireland without him and still have a great time.

Well, mission accomplished! Taran and I had an amazing time tooling around Dublin, renting a car and driving around the Irish countryside and shopping in Dingle.

Here I am on a beach on the Dingle Peninsula:

Me drinking Jameson in a pub in Dingle town:

Taran and I at Malahide Castle, just north of Dublin:

In Ireland I had this amazing view of my feelings for J. Despite being 3,000 miles away from New Jersey and not talking to him for days, I felt close with J, knowing that at one point his 17-year-old self rode his bike along the same streets down which I was walking. While in Ireland, I was able to accept that it is okay to still love him, even though I know it's over. By accepting that I still have feelings for this man, I am able to look back on the relationship, remember our good times and be happy that I was able to be with him for the short duration of our partnership. "When life offers you a dream so far beyond any of your expectations, it's not reasonable to grieve when it comes to an end," writes Stephanie Meyer. And this is the truth! Or, at least it was, when I was in Ireland. No more than an hour after landing in Newark airport, my parents and I were driving down Route 1 in East Brunswick, and who drives past us? That's right...J. What timing! I wasn't ready to see the bane of my existence, the source of all this emotional pain, the man who made me happier than I had ever been. I freaked. And there, I was sucked back into the vortex of grief I was able to pull myself out of when I was 3,000 miles away. With one, unexpected look, I was sad again. Sad that he let me go. Luckily, Ireland was brilliant and I was able to deal with his absence better than I thought when I was hanging out with Irish lads...

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