It’s already been two months since I last saw you. Since I last was wrapped in your embrace. Thinking back now, things seemed great then. But, underneath our masks of happiness and ease, we were both exhausted with what had been drawn out for far too long.
It only occurred to me recently that I blurred the significance of my having own identity when I was with you. I stopped listening to the music I loved. I tried dressing up for you, and I started wearing less for you. I broke rules I had set for myself prior to meeting you, in hopes of keeping you interested.
I learned to keep quiet. I learned to not expect answers to real questions about where we stood when I really did deserve explanations. I learned to deal with your impatience. I learned to keep to myself and not expect you to hold my hand in public. I grew to understand I’d never be more than just some girl you had some ‘thing’ with once.
I should be through with you. The toxicity you filled my world with resembled the exhaust from 1,000 cars on the Brooklyn Bridge during rush hour. You brought thunder and lightning to my cloudless sky and left me alone after the downpour. You instilled a fear of voicing my concerns and questions with others, for fear of annoying them with my uncertainty. My uncertainty, which stemmed from an insecurity you had grown over the years, one that you projected onto whatever we shared.
There were countless nights I’d lose sleep because you had made me feel worthless. You made me feel stupid and irrational for even feeling like we could ever fall in love.
You would create a push and pull mechanism. You would push me away and hold me at arm’s length for weeks. You’d leave me out to hang dry during rainstorms for no apparent reason. Then, out of nowhere, you’d create a sky full of rainbows and the sound of birds singing. You’d pull me back in with your soothing voice and deep brown eyes that led me to believe I could see your truth. You’d have me mesmerized for months to follow, and the cycle would ensue.
Still, after all the trouble you’ve caused me, I miss you. I miss your consistency, but then I remember how often your moods would fluctuate.
I miss your loyalty, but then I remember you always left me questioning if I was the only girl in your heart.
I miss being able to predict how you’d react, but then I remember I used to love spontaneity and unpredictability. I lost that love when I was with you.
I miss your intelligence, but then I remember how inferior you’d make me feel for not understanding your rationale on how the Earth could possibly be flat (when it’s actually a fact that the Earth is round).
I miss the excitement in your voice and how your eyes lit up when you were two days away from seeing your favorite rappers in concert. But then I remember, you changed my interests in music, and I was under the false pretense that I thoroughly enjoyed anything you did.
I miss your embrace and how safe I’d feel in your arms, but then I remember how alone I’d feel the second I’d get home and you wouldn’t pick up the phone for another two days.
As much as you brought light into my life, it was artificial. You kept me enclosed in a windowless room for months on end, narrowing my view and seeing you as my only option. My only hope for a first love.
But I needed to fall for you and believe I was in love to see that what I felt wasn’t love. And if I can feel so deeply and genuinely care for someone who isn’t worthy of my real love, I can only imagine how much I’ll be able to love the right person.
So thank you for not loving me. You pushed me to my limits. You set my soul ablaze and left me alone as I watched our memories burn to the ground. Despite it all, I’m grateful still. And I miss you still. But only because you taught me more about myself than I’d known before, and I now know my capability to love exceeds yours.