There was a time you were fortunate enough to have opened your heart completely to someone. Days were spent laughing at inside jokes, fingers intertwined as you walked down the street to your favorite lunch spot, his dark brown eyes like a portal to a place only you knew about. Nights wrapped up in his arms, tracing maps on his chest of where you two would visit someday; falling asleep dreaming of that “someday.”
He didn’t need to break down your walls; you never built them in the first place. He studied you like a work of art; the brush strokes of your hair, the way it effortlessly curled around your ear he’d nibble on. The hues of pink that flushed your cheeks every time he called you beautiful. You were on full display, exposed, but never self-conscious. So extraordinary, loving someone who loves you back, you believed this must be a once in a lifetime feeling.
It begins with a forgotten text, a missed dinner date, a trivial argument. You spend less and less time together and you notice this fact less. Soon you feel more like friends, talking about work and the weather, that funny YouTube video you watched. The inside jokes which once brought so much laughter now result in a fake chuckle or grin. You walk a few steps ahead on your way to lunch now, one hand on your purse and the other in your pocket.
His touch no longer excites the butterflies in your stomach, the long and passionate kisses becoming shorter in length until his lips are mere strangers to yours. The same painting which only beamed exquisiteness, now appears incomplete; flawed even. Unwanted criticism sparks heated debate, leading to further disagreements. One night, you’ll fall asleep on the opposite side of the bed, dreaming of places you will visit someday. Only this time, it won’t be with him.
You’ll spend time alone; convinced the love you felt wasn’t real, or was too real to ever come close to again. Weeks will pass, his lingering scent now untraceable in your sheets. Months later you get that promotion at work and don’t think to call him about it. Your friends say things like “you seem happy.” And you are. So you’re hesitant when you begin to date again. You wait for that same feeling as before but it never comes.
You dismiss anything with potential because you’re not sure if it’s what you really want. Honestly, you don’t know what you want. The comparisons begin as you remember only the good in your last relationship, overlooking the bad. The truth is, you won’t find another love like your last one.
What you’ll find, though, is something new. Something different. Dare I say, something better. And, if you let yourself, you might just fall in love with light blue eyes that remind you of the ocean. His laugh will be deeper, his hands wider.
He’ll fight hard to tear down the new walls you built around your heart, and slowly you’ll stop resisting. His touch will give you butterflies; that extraordinary feeling you thought you’d never experience again. You’ll fall asleep in his arms tracing maps on his chest and realize; you never forgot how to love, and you never will.
When you forget how to love, let him in.