Think of all the things that person did wrong, and how now you have a broken heart to deal with only because of their existence. Blame them for the days that are never ending and blur together. The days that only have life when something reminds you of them. Pick out every mistake they have ever made, and pretend that only those moments added together resulted in the shattering of all your hopes. Think that they are why you can never love again, that you are irrefutably broken and becoming a bit mad. Delete all the text messages. Ignore all their friends. Tell yourself that it’s because of them that you cry yourself to sleep each night and why the anxiety nearly suffocates you.
Breathe. Count to ten. Then count to twenty.
Take a step back. Think of all the moments where you caused them any pain. Sit with all your mistakes, and wish you could take all of them back, not to get the person back but to keep that person’s heart whole, new, without the cracks ready to give way under the pressure of losing someone. Deal with the harsh reality of having a role in the demise of a beautiful thing. Have a daily war between forgetting them effortlessly and then remembering every single moment with tedious clarity. Try to find them in other people, and realize how everyone falls just a bit short. Absorb how you look for ridiculous things in a new partner, like if when they eat, they vaguely remind you of a baby animal. Or if their feet look cute in socks or not. Or if looking at them makes you feel the impossible contradiction of an erratic heartbeat but a peaceful mind all at once.
Delete pictures one by one.
Or be a little weak and put them in a far away place you can’t get to every day. Act like you’re doing better. Let your friends think that you’ve moved on. Let yourself think you have too. Give into the reality on some nights and look back at old memories. Be cognizant of the fact that they deserve better than the broken pieces that both of you could not put back together. Slowly come to terms with the fact that they will not be coming back, that maybe they shouldn’t be coming back, and so you must stop waiting.
Wonder if the new girl they will love will be all the good things that you aren’t. Genuinely hope that she is. Inadvertently smile when you picture them with someone other than you.
Fast forward ten years, to where you stumble upon the place of memories.
Go through each one, feeling the pit of nostalgia forming with every remembrance. Think of how it was to be young, and how love seemed a bit simpler the first time around. Wonder what that person is doing right that second. Make up your mind that they’re doing well because you had a glimpse into their soul at one point in time, and they were filled with nothing but overwhelming brilliance.
Thank them, finally without any doubts, for the lessons that carried you through the past ten years- for the people you avoided, the people you loved, the people who are in your life now. Wish to reconnect and reminisce over what you still consider significant, impactful, transcendent. However, let go of this notion and keep it firmly in uncharted territory. Let that person be happy without you, and be okay with it. Vow to think of them more often now because connections like those are meant to last a lifetime, in any possible way.
Hope that they think of you too.