And I’m here to remind you Rocky of the mess you left when you went away
It’s not fair to deny me of the cross I bear that you gave to me
You, you, you oughta know…
‘Cause the joke that you laid on the bed that was me
And I’m not gonna fade as soon as you close your eyes, and you know it
And every time I scratch my nails down someone else’s back
I hope you feel it…well can you feel it?
Last night, as I watched Monday Night Raw with my laptop open to twitter, it finally dawned on me. All of this rage toward the Rock that John Cena has bottled up inside of him comes from a familiar place. A dark place. A black place that grows inside of you over time, threatening to consume everything that makes you who you are until you have no choice but to explode, let it out, scream to the sky and rain hell down upon whoever is in your path at that moment. It is a place so many of us have been, and will return to someday. It’s abandonment, it’s loss, it’s heartbreak. John Cena is… heartbroken.
“I used to love that chant. It’s tough for me to even call him ‘The Rock’ anymore because I used to love the Rock just like you guys.. and then he morphed into Dwayne.” – John Cena.
This statement by John Cena rings true of so many statements which have been made in the aftermath of a breakup. It sounds a little like “I used to love you, but you’ve changed.” John Cena is clearly having difficulty with the fact that the Rock became a different person (although, more accurately, he was always Dwayne Johnson.. “The Rock” was a fictional character) and he’s struggling to come to terms with the nature of his reality. Things are different now, and despite all of the love that existed in the past, things can never be the same as they used to be.
“He is a Champion with people. He has an entourage of his little goons. He has Brian, you saw his picture on the tonight show, the guy who writes all of his jokes…. he’s got a crackpot staff of rentacops to make sure nobody messes up that million dollar smile.” – John Cena.
Here, we see, Cena has moved on to the next stage of accepting the deterioration of the relationship. Here, Cena is attempting to find someone else to blame. It’s that “Well, I didn’t do anything wrong, it can’t be me” state of mind that, ultimately, leads Cena to laying blame elsewhere. All of these people have gotten between them, they used to be close, there used to be a connection but now, no matter how hard he tries, Cena just cannot get through to the Rock anymore. (Needless to say, Cena has an entire WWE creative team writing for him and, last I checked, there is security to stop people from jumping in the ring to mess up Cena’s fifty thousand dollar smile.)
“The thing I’m most proud of, the thing that makes me sleep at night, through all that B.S. I always showed up and I never left. And when it comes down to Dwayne, the first time that he got a taste of the bright lights of Hollywood, he was out of her faster than I could say ‘Rocky don’t go.’” – John Cena.
Typical jilted lover behavior here: “I didn’t change, I didn’t leave. You left me, you gave up on us.” John Cena is hurting. The Rock left him, the Rock decided that after a decade of physical pain, a grueling schedule, difficult situations and countless complications, he had to move on somewhere better, somewhere he could be happy. John Cena hasn’t yet come to accept that, Cena hasn’t yet reached a place where he wants The Rock to be happy. He’s still in that scorned lover ‘I hope you get caught in a car fire for breaking my heart’ state of mind.
“Finally, The Rock has come home, and he’s never leaving again… and then he left. Again.” – John Cena.
I imagine that, most nights, when the lights have shut off and the arena has grown quiet, Cena prepares to drive away from the building after he steps out of that ring. He slumps at the shoulders, drops his bag into the trunk, slides into his driver seat and has a good cry as he rolls out of the parking lot singing Alicia Keys: “You wore the crown, you made my body feel heaven bound. Why don’t you hold me, need me? You told me you’d never leave me.”
“April 9th, the Monday after, when I’m at Monday Night Raw and Dwayne’s on a movie set sipping a Mai Tai, laughing at his stunt double… I promise, Rocky, as entertaining as you’re gonna be, as much as you’re gonna try to bring it, as many boots as you want to put to as many asses, you don’t got the club in the bag, son. I’m here, I’ve been here, I’ll always be here.” – John Cena
Finally that emotional volcano has erupted. John Cena is finally living true to that broken heart. He isn’t going to lay around at night smelling Rock’s pillow and crying over him anymore. He’s going to take a long, hot shower, brush his hair, put on one of his ten thousand “Hustle. Loyalty. Respect.” shirts and go out there to show that the Rock hasn’t broken him. No matter the pain, no matter the consequences, John Cena is not going to be afraid to love again.
John Cena marches toward Wrestlemania 28, where the true challenge will be. He has to try and show that, not only does he not still hurt, but he’s better than he was when Rock broke his heart. It’s like that awkward moment when you bump into your ex. She’s slimmed down, gotten in shape, wearing that short skirt with those long legs. She’s waiting in line, checking out some candles, cooking supplies and hanging on her arm is the guy she’s bringing home with her that night. He’s clean cut, muscular, nicely dressed and offers so much more than you could. So you just try to avoid eye contact, ring up their items, take the money and bag the merchandise.
When the dust settles, maybe Rock’s got the better life, but John’s still got the right to love again. Well, that and his fancy shirts and camoflouge shorts. After Wrestlemania, when John Cena takes the elevator up to his hotel room and his body is sore and aching from that clash between he and the one who broke his heart, he’ll crawl beneath the covers, look up at the dark ceiling and whisper to himself “I’ll never let another man break my heart.”