You’re aware of how it must look to everyone else, so cartoonish and unoriginal. There you are, sitting with your phone on the table, feeling your stomach tighten with every beep, aching for an answer you know you won’t get.
You’ve gone ahead and done the thing everyone warned you against. You pinned all your hopes and heartsick desires on one face. One stupid, stupid face you can’t seem to erase.
You never thought you’d be the one waiting. It’s just so not like you, you imagine them saying. Because it isn’t.
Or, it wasn’t.
Something incredible happens to us when we fall for someone. It’s really like we fall, slipping on an invisible banana peel and losing our grasp on everything around us. It becomes this nonsensical combination of slow-motion as you watch it all play out, and then everything blurring to such an extreme, it’s hard to see anything at all.
Yeah, you could pull out the science behind it and spew facts about oxytocin — a badass lil’ hormone. It’s not just there for euphoria. It has a serious impact on all kinds of important things like relaxation, trust, and yep, you guessed it, psychological stability.
We’re always talking about how love makes us crazy, and it definitely does, but when we’re deprived of it? When we can see it within reach, but no matter how hard we try, we can’t grab onto it? When it was there, and suddenly, it’s just…not?
Oh, that will drive you up the f*cking wall.
And when someone you love casts you aside, or maybe even worse, comes back when their first choice doesn’t pan out?
It will split you in half.
But you aren’t ready to admit to this damage right now. You want their love, their smell, to just know they are in this with you, fully. So you’ll rationalize whatever you can. Your brain goes into overdrive, ready to make something completely irrational somehow sound logical. You’ll find trivial reasons to wait, or stay, or whatever the game is you’re stuck playing. You’ll swallow little bits of pride when no one is looking and decide second choice isn’t that bad.
When you do this, you allow someone else to dictate your worth. And trust me when I say, I understand. There are times when love overpowers us so much that we’re willing to hide in the darkness for it. We’ll do the things we said we wouldn’t. We’ll say the things that burn our throats. We’re ravenous for this love because we can’t remember how it felt before. Right now, everything feels on fire.
But you deserve someone who feels that fire for you. You deserve the oxytocin explosion aimed your way, too. It’s not enough to be a secondary character, someone waiting for a moment to be seen.
Don’t be someone’s second choice because you won’t be able to forget your place in line. Even when you try to. Even when you do such a good job of convincing yourself everything is fine. Because everything isn’t fine. You were a second choice, and part of you will just continue burning when you think about who came first.