The internet tells me there are 5 stages of grief (or whatever therapeutic theories are circulating these days). And at first, when you told me it was over, I thought I had skipped all of those stages and gone right to acceptance. My maturity level had hit a new high. I was okay. We acted like adults, came to a mutual understanding, and respected each other’s feelings… I even gave you the benefit of the doubt — chalked you up to being a good guy.
But with time, I found out you weren’t so good after all; you weren’t the person I thought you were. So queue stage 3, anger. I would hate to be cliché, “the scorned ex”, but please, allow me this. I think what hurts are the lies and how easy it was for you to tell them. Did you think lying would spare my feelings; that it would make the end neater? In a city that is nearly 7 by 7 miles, you can’t hide secrets. And apparently you can’t hide your true colors either.
I wrack my brain, trying to understand how I could be so deceived. I never loved you, but I loved the person I was with you. I was foolish. So now that it’s over and you’ve moved on in record-breaking strides, I am saddled with anger. It’s not an attractive side of myself. Out of curiosity, when you are together, does she get to see your true colors? Does she get a different version of you — or are you like a blueprint, following the same lines and patterns relationship to relationship? (On second thought, don’t answer that. I’m not really sure I’m going to like the answer.)
I know with each day, I will think about you a little less (the one redeeming factor of time). I will spend smaller amounts of my day ruminating on your faults and, over time, will feel less annoyance and hostility towards you. But for now, being angry is easier than the constant dull ache of missing you.
Truly, I miss the person I thought you were: the charm, the wit, the seemingly innate goodness that you held behind those green eyes. I miss that sweet sincerity I felt every time I woke up next to you. Lying in bed, limbs tangled around each other, willing the clock to slow down or just give us a few more seconds before the real world beckoned. But missing that person is like missing a dream. In the moment, the dream feels nice, almost surreal, then you open your eyes and realize none of it actually happened. The veil of sleep lifts and you are stuck with the harshness of reality.
I will give you credit: you were so good at being “that person,” or I was good at being deceived. Who you are now is someone I don’t know. And that is something I can accept, I will move on, heal, and grow stronger. I know that as much as someone can bring their guard down, you always need to keep at least a couple of walls up. Those walls are your fail-safes, your moat surrounding the castle that is your heart, so to speak — because you can never be too careful who you hand your heart to.
So instead of the vast things I could say to you, I will tell you that I will get over you. I will move on this time more carefully and with a cautiousness that is new to me. Because this time I can blame you for my foolishness — it is easier to blame you for the hurt than myself — but next time the fault will be all my own. I can’t and won’t make the same mistake twice.