The Awkward After

The after-the-breakup awkward is one of those uncomfortable period of adjustments that you just have to get through. There's no shortcut, no getting around it. If you are ever going to lay eyes on this person again in life, there's going to be something.

So there I stood, outside David's front door debating... should I knock, ring the doorbell? When you are used to pulling into the garage and letting yourself in, it's awkward to now follow rules of etiquette. With a sigh, I rang the doorbell. He came to the door, opened it and immediately asked, "Why didn't you pull in the back?" See? Awkward. I just shrugged, said hello and stepped in.

There's no delicate way to gather up your stuff from someone else's house. In the past, to avoid long drawn out awkwardization, I tended to tip over when I knew the person wouldn't be home. If someone was coming to get stuff from my place, I had it already packaged. (Or burning on the front driveway, a la Waiting to Exhale..."Get yo' shit!" Okay, maybe not) My favorite post break-up was the ex who mailed all the stuff I had ever given him to my house. My mom's face when she saw the cuff links she had helped me pick out for him tossed into a cardboard box? Awesome (not!). BougieYoungerBro now rocks those. I believe in recycling.

Moving on... so I had a suitcase and a tentative smile as I eased past him towards the bedroom. I had hoped that he had pulled all the random stuff together and all I had to do was scoop and go. When I noticed none of this had been done, I sent him The Look. He shrugged, "Until you came to get it, it's like you're still here." Ouch. I nodded and began tossing hair products, potions and lotions into the bag. Cleared out my drawer, walked into the closet and sighed. I had stuff all over the damn place. Thankfully, he turned and walked out. It was uber-awkward having him watch me unhang an item, fold it and pack it away.

When I walked back out to the den, he was on the sofa. It was all kind of weird because we were passed the sad phase and onto the resigned 'this is how it's gonna be' phase. Maybe because we both knew this day was coming. There was only one thing left to do. I handed over the garage door opener, the keys and the engagement ring I'd never gotten in the habit of wearing. That made him angry.
"Keep the ring." 
"It was specifically for you. Not like I'm going to give that ring to someone else." 
"Okay then, take it back to the jeweler and get credit or exchange or something." 
"Michele, I don't want the damn ring back. It's yours." 

I did not want to argue. I nodded, "Okay. Talk to you later," and as I walked past the front table, I set the ring down and headed out the door. Saturday, in the mail, the ring came back with a note, "I said keep it."  With the underline. Arrgh!

BougieLand, any nice neat way to retrieve personal items from exes? Has anyone had any drama with this? And let's take a straw poll - who thinks I should keep the ring and who thinks I should send it back? Thoughts, comments, insights?