I remember us driving down I-95 on a beautiful fall day, when you told me what my engagement ring would look like. Your mother had the family stone.
I looked at you and I was so happy. You were perfect. We were the best of friends, we loved going on adventures. We never needed space from each other – it was just so easy to be with you. But another part of me was scared, wondering how I could let my guard down completely without getting hurt again.
It was never your fault, but sometimes betrayal in a relationship can cause trust issues for a long time. Someone else violated my trust and it completely affected my belief system. It just made me always push people away every time I got close.
I knew you would never break my heart, but anxiety and stress had become my everyday companions. The possibility of a permanent future with you did not gel well with my fear of intimacy and commitment.
I wanted to forget about my past and start a new life with you, but sometimes when you get hurt, it’s easier to dissociate and just stay disconnected from everyone.
Growing up, I had seen similar incidents in life. I had witnessed lies, betrayal, and cheating as a form of everyday relationship. I was afraid I would get stuck in that web.
So I started to pull away; I know people called me a fool for what I did, but I was scared to get close. For me, I was just protecting myself because the scars of my past life had marked my heart. In the process, I did not think of how much I hurt you and for that, I am sorry. You deserved a girl who would give her 100% to you like you did to me, but you were with a broken person still trying to put the pieces together; you were with someone who never felt she was good enough.
You were everything I ever wanted. I know I loved you – you were probably the first person I truly loved. But I was confused, and I did not have a proper sense of who I was. I felt it was only a matter of time until you would hurt me. I prayed to God so I could fully love.
It reminded me of the quote from Great Expectations: “Let’s say there was a little girl, and from the time she could understand, she was taught to fear… let’s say she was taught to fear daylight. She was taught that it was her enemy, that it would hurt her. And then one sunny day, you ask her to go outside and play and she won’t. You can’t be angry at her can you?” You said it was just an excuse and that it was my choice.
I started to make impulsive decisions to push you away. I became emotionally numb. Being with me was a crazy rollercoaster ride, and I’m not sure how you lasted so long. The chaos in my life was too grand to have space for someone as real and true as you. I was not ready.
Three years later, a day before I left, you asked me to stay and that everything would be okay. You promised me a forever (again). I had been preparing myself to leave for months, wishing and hoping that you would stop me sooner, but not wait until the last day.
I still remember the day when we said goodbye. It was the saddest Tuesday of my life. It was always so unlikely for someone like me to be with someone like you. I wish it was still true.
(I wish I had stayed.)