Have you heard this term? It drives me crazy and I’m not entirely sure why. I first noticed it a couple of years ago popping up in hashtags and captions of NFL players I follow on social media. There are commonalities among the players who use/d it most frequently, some of which are stereotypes that I won’t bother perpetuating here because they’re irrelevant in this context anyway. In football, it’s used in the context of defensive coverage. Safeties “lurk” to disrupt crossing routes mid field and (some of) those players are wildly obsessed with calling themselves part of the #lurkgang. Usually those players are flashy showboaters who far too rarely back up their talk with actual disruptions and clutch plays. But I’m a curmudgeon who gets annoyed with the young kids’ gridiron antics.
I was reminded of this term earlier this week though when I was talking to my therapist. We were talking about a topic that I wanted to noodle on a while before digging in and she suggested I blog about it this week. I laughed and said that I hadn’t written here in months and, when she asked why, I struggled to come up with a succinct answer on the spot. The best I could muster in that moment was that there have been times where I’m deep in thought or there’s something I want to bounce off of someone but don’t really have a friend for that particular topic or whatever, and I do think about writing, but I hesitate to sit down and do it now. In the past, writing was always my easiest, most comfortable outlet but that, like so many things, has become less natural as of late. I told her that at least half of the reason is just laziness and general malaise; easier to turn on the tv and doom scroll rather than intentionally sit down to write. But I also said that part of it is the lurk gang.
At some point in the past month, when I saw a current picture of him laughing and wearing a wedding ring, I finally deleted my Finsta. Yes, it was hurtful but not because I still feel the acute pain of it all. It was hurtful because it caused my hate and rage and thirst for retribution to ignite again. I HATE that he appears not to have suffered from his selfish behavior and incredibly cruel choices. He is still playing football, laughing, and living his fucking life as if he didn’t willfully destroy someone else’s. Exactly one year later, I am painfully aware that I cannot control that. But I can control whether I have to see it. So, it’s gone. Poof!
Since that fake Instagram account was always the largest and weirdly consistent generator of visitors here (even when I haven’t posted in months), I thought maybe that would help curb the lurking. Though I fully recognize and accept responsibility for being the reason all of those individuals found their way here in the first place, it is also okay for me to miss the anonymity of the origins of this blog. I miss interacting with regular readers that I also follow. I miss the feedback and the interaction and the input from strangers that always felt/feel like a real community and, although that still exists when I do write publicly, I also must acknowledge that I am reluctant to share things now because of all the people who have come here over the past year only to read about my heartbreak. A few are my actual friends in real life and I have no reluctance in being vulnerable with them at all. This has actually surprised me over the past year since this went public and I used it as a way to tell a story I didn’t want to actually talk about. Instead though, it is all of the friends and family of my ex and his now wife, and presumably one or both of them as well — even though I pulled back that protective cloak of my own volition and with the sole intention of knowledge being power, I am also allowed to no longer want those people to read about my moving on, my healing. That is the lurk gang that I’d prefer an option to filter out.
For instance, two weeks ago, Covid finally found me and absolutely wrecked me, inside and out! It was a wild time. I felt so alone, both physically and emotionally, but I had so much time to do nothing but sit and think. Every single part of me hurt, including my skin and my eyes so holding a book to read or watching tv were pretty much out. Instead, I listened to podcasts and MasterClasses and thought lots of existential thoughts that I wanted to get out. But I didn’t. Yes, partially because everything hurt and I don’t think I could have if I tried, but there was also a part of me that didn’t want “the lurk gang” to know I was suffering. It’s totally ego-maniacal, I know!! Why would anyone care? But Covid-brain is wild. You think wild things, particularly when you spend entire days not interacting with any other humans. I kept thinking, what if they think, “Good! The bitch with all the words and thoughts and feelings has been struck down.” After the fever-dreams and fugue state faded, I could recognize that thought pattern as paranoid lunacy. But two weeks later, the remnants still linger a bit. The what-if of it all.
My therapist asked if I regretted sharing my blog with him and her and their village last year. That’s an easy answer: NO. I truly do not regret it. I am still wildly proud of myself for daring to be courageous, standing up for myself, taking a modicum of my power back, protecting myself if for no other reason than ridding myself of the poison and putting it squarely around their necks as a yoke instead. The verbal equivalent of a scarlet A, I absolutely 100% still hope they feel shame about the truth. I still look forward to the day Karma rears her head. I still hope their friends and family know the truth and judge them for it. Clearly, there is a lack of accountability but, honestly, that’s not my business. It never was. My business was sharing the truth, my truth. I did that.
So, while I eventually would love to get back to writing about life and music and general musings, I’ve still got some baggage left to unpack. I’m just going to make the conscious choice to skirt the defense, undercut their coverage, and move my bags down the field regardless. They can lurk all they want. It wouldn’t be the first defensive end I’ve left in my dust 🙂
“I want to destroy you
I want to move fast
I want the attention
I want all the cash
I want all the ass
Is it too much to ask?”Lurk – The Neighbourhood