I’m saying goodbye to you again, but this time is not like the last time. Our last goodbye was full of tears and pain. Our last goodbye you knew it was the end when I didn’t. I’ll never forget that last time, sharing my twin bed feeling like I’ve never been so close to someone, sharing the same breaths, though yours were measured and even while mine we shaky sobs, and yet feel so far away. That time when we said goodbye I was sure it wasn’t the end of our story, but somehow you were, maybe you had been for a while.
This time I am saying goodbye to you even though our last hello was over two years ago. I’m saying goodbye to the lingering idea of you. You are going to marry the girl who you loved after me. I am going to marry someone I loved after you, even though I’m sure I haven’t met him yet. He might be out there right now, telling another girl that he loves her, promising her all the things you promised me, not ever knowing that someday he will meet me and his entire world will be flipped upside down. I wonder if that’s how you felt when you met her.
When you left me, I thought my life was over. It’s funny that in many ways I was right. A life did end when you left, the life that I had envisioned with you had died on the very day that you told me you didn’t love me anymore. I’ve lived a few more lives since then. I’ve reinvented myself two, three times maybe, leaving behind the ghosts of girls I used to be, girls you could have loved. Today though, I will say goodbye to those girls too. They are a part of you too after all. They are the girls that pined for you, lived in spite of you, and craved your jealousy and regret.
Those girls served their purpose, propelling me to the woman I am now, but they too are toxic and I will say goodbye to them today.
How do you say goodbye to someone when you can’t even remember your last hello? It was probably something like “Hey baby, I can’t wait to see you tonight.” How crazy is it to think that those days are so far away now. They float through my memories like puffs of smoke. I can’t quite make out anymore the curve of your lips or taste of that one spot on your neck I liked the most. I forget what your arms felt like around me. Were they a comforting embrace or a suffocating hold?
So much has changed since our last goodbye, I’m the girl I told you I always wanted to be, or at least I’m getting there, most days. I wonder if you know that I finally did the things I told you I would, and I wonder if that makes you happy for me. I hope that it does.
I wonder if we will ever have another hello. I wonder if I’ll pass by you on the street in two or ten years and I wonder if you’ll hug me and say hello or if you’ll just avert your eyes, treating me like any other stranger, which is exactly what we have become.
I will say goodbye to you in every breath that gets easier, in every passing month that I stop checking in with our old friends to see how you are. I will say goodbye to you little by little until there is nothing left to say to you at all. I will get the closure I thought I wanted by making peace with myself instead of you. I will let go of the want to revenge or regret by realizing that just be living better after being broken I’m winning a fight that was never against you to begin with, it was always just me vs. me.
So this is goodbye. One last time.