This Is How We’ll Grow Apart

D. Sharon Pruitt
D. Sharon Pruitt

I’ll stop telling you how I feel. Every night we spend at opposite ends of the bed, I’ll keep my mouth shut, my jaw clenched, every muscle in my body tense and turned away from you. I’ll take every stretch of silence personally. I’ll allow them to ravage my emotions, to cause me physical pain until I shake and tremble the thoughts away.

You will continue to ignore me. Continue to focus on yourself, your depression, your world-a world you believe is out to get you. You will never see me closing up slowly, inching away from you, building up my walls brick by brick. Those nights when you sigh, exasperated, your anger and rage palpable, radiating from every limb on your body, I’ll hold myself a little tighter, move a little closer to the wall and a little further away from you. The coolness of the paint will fade as my continuous breath heats the space in front of me.

You’ll fall asleep, wrapped in the tangled mess that is your life, unable to see through the fog. Unable to see me fading, slowly and steadily.

One night, I’ll realize how much I have been alone. How everything is like it was when I was single. How you are no longer there (maybe you never were) to listen to me. How your eyes never glance up from the light of your screen when I walk into a room. How you are so unaware of how many times I cry in a week, how many tears I shed for you. How your anger and frustration have been strangling me.

I’ll sit in bed long after you’ve slammed the door. You will put my sadness from your mind, welcoming the distraction of lines and beers. I’ll stare at the rooftops and watch the smoke billow across the night sky, disappearing almost as instantaneously as it came. I will reflect on my resolution to “love my body more” in 2014 and wonder vaguely, if I should first start loving and respecting myself more than this relationship.

This relationship that is now starting to look like sand already slipped through my fingers. A hollow shell I desperately cling to, hoping that you’ll momentarily pull yourself out of your black hole of narcissism and depression to notice that I’m still lying in this bed. I will feel my tears dry and my sobs stifle as you lay back down across the bed. You’ll sigh and I’ll put my hand out to hold onto the wall, only to wonder what I could have done differently. TC mark

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