Lydia and Trevor were officially boyfriend and girlfriend from four months after they began dating until they broke up six months later.
January through June were exciting for Lydia – she had a guy commit to her! They were doing couple things, like going to see a movie and then not watching the movie because they were busy with other activities. And sure, their time together was going to be limited when Trevor left for his job on Cape Cod over the summer, but that was a problem for future Lydia. Except Lydia never saw their time apart as a problem. She memorized bus schedules and planned her life around when she would be able to visit Trevor. And then on one of her first visits to Trevor during his time on the Cape, Trevor broke up with Lydia. Their break-up tainted what had been an enjoyable day spent with sand sneaking between their toes and salt creating a light crust on their hair. And it made for an awkward ride back to the bus the next day.
For a month this queen of independence questioned how she could have forced this boy away from her. Her internal struggle between self-torture and…no, it wasn’t a struggle, self-torture won. Her internal monologue attacked her, creating a narrative that painted her as the catalyst for their break-up. Isn’t it funny how our internal monologues conveniently forget that relationships involve two people? Her grief for their relationship was not helped by Ginger, who set up Lydia and Trevor, and her celebration of her and her girlfriend’s one year anniversary.
But time and distance heal most wounds. When Lydia left for her annual two weeks spent in at her grandparents’ home along a northern coastline of a small fishing village, she had been consumed by doubt, confusion, and loss. Her feelings were all heightened by the gnawing thought that she was responsible for their break-up. And then she inhaled that first breath of air that brined her lungs. Lydia is rarely happier than she is every moment she spends in the fisherman’s village. Here, as the waves carried away her self-loathing, is where she fell in love with herself.
No matter how often one may repeat the mantra “I don’t need a man,” it is hard to deny the profound effects of receiving another person’s validation, especially when that person is validating your looks, your sex appeal, and your talents. It’s hard to cope when that evidence that you are desirable is taken away, and you need to, once again, find validation from within yourself all while your mind is telling you that you are accountable for your grief. But a change of pace and a distinct lack of self-sabotage reminded Lydia that she had been okay before Trevor and would be okay again. Trevor would not be the only person who found her remarkable.
With a new clarity and because she missed their friendship, Lydia invited Trevor back into her life that fall. She’s actually watching the movies they see together now, but their time together is no less enjoyable. Although her friends warned her that seeing Trevor again could be catastrophic (and, on some level, she knew they could be right), Lydia decided that she would rather test the waters rather than fear them. The water may not be as warm as it used to be, but it’s no less comfortable. Their love for each other may have changed, but then, so did Lydia’s love for herself.
Besides, there are still a few more Star Wars movies set to be released. What is Lydia supposed to do, see them by herself?