November 22, 2016

This Is How I’ll Make You Stay

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Sergey Zolkin
Sergey Zolkin

Here we go again, you packing your bags full of promises and sweet impromptu speeches as I stand in the doorway not moving an inch to even grab your arm and convince you to stay. Maybe you have grown tired of me, wanted an adventure that wasn’t etched into my skin.

You grab your carry on and I see your back bear the weight, but you didn’t let it show; tell me why? You know you can fall apart with me. You can fall the same way I let my head rest on your shoulder as we watched my best friend at the hospital, the flowers on her table had our nicknames on the card to make her laugh.

When you met me, I think you didn’t notice that I came with a volume of directions and instructions for you to take note of. I didn’t have a heart to give you back then; I had a heart made for you. It went through a long process of rejections, anxiety, nervousness, doubt and the occasional regrets but finally, I brought you my heart, had it wrapped up in a box with a blue ribbon on top of it.

I gave it to you when we had our first kiss, the stars I swear have never shown brighter than they were that night; your eyes had that same glow. I gave you the box, my heart inside of it; but you forgot that it was fragile; you didn’t read the reminder on top of the box that said “handle with care”. Instead, you shook it, lifted it up forgetting that it said “this side up” and in a flash my heart dropped out of your hold and crashed on the floor; the pieces and shards of it glistening, you didn’t know what to do, you didn’t expect that my heart was that fragile, that it was that selfless, you got scared and ran away, like a little kid who got scared of clowns.

As you close the door of the apartment, you left the tiniest crack at the door, barely seen. My heart was still on the floor, staring at it with so much numbness, I couldn’t feel a thing. What was I supposed to do? I walked on it; glassy shards of transparency got corrupted with my blood. I guess this is why hearts are of the color red, they were once transparent, crystal-like at the most, and when someone foolish enough to break it, you are left to walk on it as your blood sinks into the glass, the memory of them tainted in your chest; like a dart hitting the bulls eye every time.

Until now, I’m still picking up the pieces, I sometimes flinch but I know this is what’s best for me. News from the neighbors said that they saw you holding hands with another soul, you moved into their apartment. It’s okay, if this is what makes you happy. It’s okay, you need someone to guide you on your journey. It’s okay, you deserve all the love in this world. It’s okay, I miss you. It’s okay, I love you.

You come to me in dreams at night you know, I always do the same thing: I reach out to touch your face, to caress it and feel the warmth and touch of you on my fingertips as I whisper, “I miss you”, and I wake up; I hope you are enjoying your new adventure without me holding your hand anymore. I’m letting you go now. I’ll try my best not to be afraid. I’ll let go of my thumb, which used to signal you that I’m always safe and sound when I’m with you. Next is my index finger, which used to point at you whenever I tease you around. My middle finger, for all the bad times that we had that I thought would make us stronger. My ring finger, it misses the warmth and coolness of the metal from the ring you gave me for our anniversary, sometimes I get this feeling that I forgot to wear something. Lastly, my pinky, for all the promises that we made for the past three years, the universe knows how much I wanted to keep those and pursue them with you.

But I’m letting you go, I’m letting you go not because I don’t love you anymore, that would be the biggest lie I could ever say. But I’m letting you go because you don’t need my love anymore in this part of the journey.

Maybe, you need to travel your life without my love for now. You’re strong; I know you can do it. In time, hopefully when fate decides, our paths will cross again and I’ll be the better version of everything that you left behind. The apartment changed as well; and my heart, the one you broke is carefully placed inside a glass cabinet and the key hanging around my neck.

Foolishly, I will hope that somehow in this unexpected world, you will need my love again. So that tiny crack you left when you closed the door of my apartment so many lifetimes ago will be wide open again.

You can knock three times, just to make it sound comical; your suitcase full of adventures and fond memories in your left hand, and a bouquet of sunflowers in your right hand, and a nervous smile playing on your lips. I will open the door and invite you in, I won’t hold your hand or pull you inside, and that’s your choice. If you take a step inside, I will invite you to sit down as the warmth of my apartment welcomes you home, that I missed you, and that you can stay. TC mark

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