…relationships: ripped jeans

I’m wearing a pair of ripped blue jeans from an old boyfriend today.

They weren’t ripped when he first handed them down. They were worn but still in good shape. He had outgrown them, but he felt they were just about right for me.

They seemed to fit well, but soon a small hole appeared in the left knee. I ignored it and kept wearing them. I thought it gave them character, perhaps lending them something that originated with me. I loved the fit, but I felt uneasy knowing that they came from him. No matter how close I was to him, I craved a sense of personal ownership. Ownership of choices, even everyday ones like a pair or ripped jeans.

The other cause of uneasiness revisited every few months. He would consider me ungrateful, extraneous, or undeserving and demand things back. Even things he couldn’t use or didn’t need. Things that nevertheless were just fine for me. Even an old pair of ripped blue jeans.

Eventually the hole became so large that the left leg drooped significantly lower than the right. It was obvious that too many threads had unravelled.

But today I’m wearing the ripped jeans. They are mine now. The hole is large and bares more skin than I usually care to reveal. They’re also frayed, riddled with abrasions, and faded to a vibrantly pale shade of blue.

Now, finally, I’ve made them mine and I’m proud to wear them. And nobody can take them.


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