I never loved you.
I know that’s an understood fact but regardless of us both acknowledging that and having that mutual understanding I feel like it needs to be said. I wasn’t in love with you. I didn’t picture our faces molding together and forming miniature versions of us and I never thought about introducing you to my dad. You were around, you existed. You were a part of my life whether it be because I spew words onto my laptop about you or drink alone in bars because of you or because I couldn’t seem to shut off a part of my heart that I wasn’t aware still worked anymore. You did that.
But even through that, though the countless 5 AM conversations, the jokes, the laughs, through the times I curled up with my phone wanting to text “I need you” but instead just said “What’s up?” I know that I never loved you.
I never thought about holidays we could share and passing along traditions. Never thought about taking you home to the snow I left behind and showing you where I laid in the street filled with teenage angst. I never imagined you hugging my grandma and getting to experience what a tiny, Southern, woman who has an affinity for two-buck-Chuck is like to hold. I never thought about taking you back to the prairie and showing you the wheat fields where I used to daydream. I never pictured you as part of my life as anything other than someone who rolled around in my sheets for a while; even if that while was short-lived.
I didn’t care what my friends thought about you, about your appearance. “He’s such a bro, Kendra!” they’d quip while they’d stir their drinks with eye rolls and judgment calls. I didn’t listen to what anyone had to say because it wasn’t a factor because there was nothing to talk about. I didn’t love you; so their thoughts were ultimately irrelevant. If I had been picturing us with our hands clasped at my birthday party, whispering and laughing and reminiscing about Chuck-E-Cheeses gone by, then maybe I would have given a damn. But when you don’t love someone it doesn’t matter.
You made fun of my tattoos and I made fun of you for not having the balls to commit to anyone long enough to get to know their middle name or blood type. You didn’t appreciate my good days enough even when my bad days made you scared of me. You said unicorns were stupid and I made declarations about being unapologetically Democratic just to piss you off. Our arguments were less lover, more hater and try as I might I could never get you to admit that you took me seriously. I never loved you because I never felt like you could or would ever really be there for me in any capacity.
I never loved you because you always reminded me how disposable I was. You’d talk about other girls, other times, and never made me feel like your past was actually past tense. Whether or not you intended to make me curl up under blankets in a sad attempt to shield myself from my own feelings of jealousy and dirtiness I’ll never know. What I do know is that when someone shows me their true self from now on I’ll know they’re being honest. I’ll know if they say that I’m disposable, whether it be through their words or actions, I’ll know to not be surprised when they toss me aside with the empty Perrier they stole from my fridge.
You were indefinable and that lack of a definition carried over into whatever we meant to each other. I have pieces of what we were and I still replay the last thing you ever said to me over and over in my head, grasping for a hidden meaning or something that says you sit watching the sun go down and wonder what I’m up to too. I have repeated the words; said them out loud to no one and reread our conversations to the point where I give myself migraines and there’s just nothing. There’s nothing because you didn’t love me and I didn’t love you.
Even though I never imagined you as anything other than someone who made me clutch my pillow while the sun came up, I still wasn’t ready for you to not be around. Even though I can still taste your lips on mine when I squeeze my eyes shut it doesn’t change the fact that you aren’t here. And even though it still hurts a bit to admit I know that if you loved me, you would be.
And if I loved you, I’d be saying this to you instead of writing it down.
I never loved you. But now the sun is going to come up and I’m thinking about you and missing your smile again.
So joke’s on me. Because I never loved you but maybe I could have.