“I’m leaving you.”
There are moments in your life that one would call “defining”. I do believe I experienced one of those moments right then.
He was sleeping and I was more acutely aware of my raging unhappiness than I have ever been before. Looking over at him, I watched the even rising and sinking of his chest. I liked him better when he slept, because at least he wasn’t actively ignoring my existence.
Excusing myself from bed, I made my way to the living room. My phone sat open to a photo of us I took when I arrived in this foreign place over a month ago. I packed up my semi-put-together life for a life full of unknowns.
I felt pretty foolish if you ask me. Thinking that after three years of not seeing each other that we would be the same people who fell for each other at 19 on a dance floor in northern Texas.
I stared blankly at the bookshelf built into the wall. It housed the works of literature I brought with me; it housed my little snippets of home. There were seven cracks, eight scuffs, and three visible nails. The shelf was about three inches too far to the left and it has bugged me since day one.
I get sucked into the thought of how easy it would be to pack everything I have in this little hell and leave while he was at work. By the time he got home, I would be at least three or four hours away. Too far gone to feel bad that I left without a word.
Sometimes it makes me feel like an ass, and other times I know damn well I deserve better.
“I didn’t move all this way to feel like this.” I said softly.
The days seemed to pass without purpose, I didn’t exist in his world. I was a warm body to sleep next to and occasionally have sex with. If you could call it that.
This is not the life I wanted.
I noticed the feeling early on and ignored it, hoping that it was a fluke and things would change. I began to feel as if I were standing in quicksand, inevitably sinking. Looking at the cable box, it read 3:47 a.m. I didn’t do much sleeping since arriving. Something just didn’t sit right, it didn’t feel right and I could feel the uncomfortableness in my bones.
Dragging the blanket down from the back of the couch, I wrapped myself up and stared at the blinking light coming from the router next to the tv. How did I let my life get this way? Why am I staying with someone who clearly doesn’t make me happy?
I needed adventure, craved a new beginning, something exciting. I needed and wished for everything he lacked. I wanted everything he wasn’t.
“I’m going home.” I slurred tiredly as I fell asleep both alone and lonely. I didn’t sleep for long before I heard the unbelievably agonizing sound of the coffee grinder.
This was every morning; my sleeping didn’t mean much to him. Rubbing my eyes, I peered over in his direction and then to the cable box once more. It read 5:02 a.m. One would figure since it was Sunday that sleeping in was an option, but it apparently didn’t exist in his world. I got up and made my way to the bedroom; he didn’t notice me over the noise of the machine and his incessant need to chug glass after glass of water. P
lopping down on the glorified air mattress I let out a loud sigh. I hated this place, and I was beginning to hate myself for staying so long.
“Babe, want a cup of coffee?” He hollered from the kitchen.
“No.” I grumbled back.
I wrapped myself in the blankets once more and try to shut the world out, maybe get some sleep. Sundays used to be my favorite days, full of relaxing and doing the things I once loved. But Sundays have become just another day, where I sit quietly in the bedroom and fold laundry and he sits in the living room drinking endless amounts of alcohol and feeding his man-need to watch football.
I woke a few hours later, alone, which was to be expected. It was eight a.m. and coffee sounded great. I got up and dressed myself in cozy cool weather clothes and grabbed my keys. I headed to the door and left without a word. I was feeling more like a roommate than a girlfriend at this point.
The weather was beautiful for the fall, warm enough to not need a coat. I made my way to Starbucks and got my coffee. For about thirty minutes I just sat in my car in a parking spot thinking about how to go about leaving. Whether or not to tell him.
Feeling lost and unbelievably helpless, I called my mom. I began to cry. “I’m leaving him. I’m coming home.”
I had done a lot of that lately, crying. I felt like there could be no possible way that I could cry any longer but there the tears were, streaming effortlessly down my cheeks.
“I’m not happy, this was a mistake.” Sobs emit from my chest.
“If this is what you want, I support you.” She says. I remained silent for a moment thinking about how I could have possibly let my life fall apart like this. Leaving is what I wanted to do.
“I’ll call you later.” I sniffled, “I love you.”
I hung up and decided to take ahold of the life I was given and to stop being so damn scared. I drove home in silence, going over in my head how I was going to do this. Clouds came roaring in and raindrops began to fall from the sky. Perfect weather, I thought. Pulling up to the apartment complex, I sat for a few minutes just listening to the calming sound of rain hitting the roof of my car. I argued with myself, thinking whether or not I gave it enough time, whether or not he could change.
I blamed myself, and then finally I realized something. This is who he is, and this version of him is not someone I plan to spend my life with.
“You come first.” I told myself as I placed my hand over my heart. And with that thought I walked through the rain, took a seat on the couch next to him and said it. “I’m leaving you.”