I’m Saying Goodbye Because When You Finally Learn To Love Me In My Absence, It’ll Be Too Late

Natalie Allen
Natalie Allen

I wanted us to make it and it pains me to say goodbye. I wanted every lie to be true. I wanted your reputation to be everything I built it up to be despite what people might have said. I wanted them to be wrong and not have it be me. Because if there’s one thing I hate it’s being wrong about people.

The thoughts dance in my mind of what we could have been with another try or if I held onto a little more faith in you. I looked at you and I saw the man I know you will be. That man who I’ve seen in glimpses which I’ll admit gave me moments of hope in an uncertain future that only I was working towards.

It was a future I thought would be ours because that’s what you promised me.

But I couldn’t hold onto to the ‘one days’ or the excuses or the straight up lies as you backtracked and I caught you in them time and time again. I was losing my sanity hanging onto you. I believed in the man you could be but the cost of you getting there was self- destruction as I set myself up for heartbreak every time I put faith in you.

Every time I tolerated the disrespect. Every time a screaming fight ended with me in tears and you somehow turning the tables on me because the art of throwing guilt is a book you should have written.

You broke my heart and I was the one to apologize. Just let that sink in for a moment or two. I couldn’t keep loving you and watching myself get hurt. I couldn’t keep looking in the mirror respecting my reflection when I knew I deserved so much more than this.

I couldn’t keep playing this game I knew would kill me in the end.

I didn’t have it in me to finish. Where I was once an open heart full of ‘I love yous’ and giving everything I could to people, after you I changed. Because the words I love you hurt with the response ‘I know’ so I learned not to say them anymore.

Admitting you care about someone completely defeats you when someone responds with ‘prove it.’ Self respect is lost as I was pinned against others trying to compete for your love.

But all I really wanted was for you to love me and only me. Because I chose you and only you to give my best to.

It wasn’t just falling in love with you, it was falling into a dark hole I couldn’t escape from and every time I’d reach for your hand you’d pull me up a little just to let me go. But in time I’d learn with trial and error that falling would teach me to fly. And sacrificing myself would soon be replaced with loving myself so deeply I didn’t let any of your kind close to me.

I forgive you for all of it because I refuse to live with hate in my heart for someone I loved dearly. I refuse to let you haunt me like a ghost that was never put to rest. I refuse to let you impact the relationships I have now because if there’s one thing I’ve learned about loving hard, it wasn’t that I was doing it wrong, it was that you were wrong.

I live with guilt for settling for much less than I deserved. The calls at two am I’d always answer. The quick responses when you’d go days ignoring me. The typing a message just to delete it like you were watching me watching you. The apologizing when I did nothing wrong but love you. More than forgive you I forgive myself for mistaking that for love.

I tolerated a lot. And I’m sure there were days you enjoyed testing me. I’m sure there were days where you liked watching my life burn with a single match you lit taking pride in the destruction. But the flames never burnt me as much as they built me. And if you’re the devil then hell is a place that became a playground I no longer feared.

We were an inconvenient love story for one another but a love story to stay the least.

I’d spend nights awake staring at the ceiling holding back tears in pain because my heart physically hurt. And you were hurt in your own way and I know you thought hurting others would ease your pain. Controlling me would help because there were so many things in your life outside of your control.

I understand. And that’s what will haunt you. You broke the heart of the one person who wanted to understand your world as well as be a part of it. But you pushed me away like my love was a burden. I looked you in the eyes and believed in you.

Despite everyone’s doubt, I followed my heart. But I had to walk away from you. Because we didn’t deserve each other. You didn’t deserve me and I deserved so much more. So I’ll walk away and not look back and maybe when I’m gone only then you’ll learn to love me.

I’m walking away and it hurts to let go of someone I hung onto for so long. But I think what I’ll come to learn in the moments of setting you and myself free was I was the only one hanging on for dear life.

So I’m letting go of a past I once loved.

I’m letting go of a future that will never be. And right now I’m standing alone but I’ve never felt so good and strong in my entire life. Because along with letting go of the love I have for you I’m letting go of the pain you caused me.

But I will not let you define me. I will not grow numb in the after effect of all the harm you caused. I will not push people away as you did me. And the cycle of half- hearted love stories ends right now. Because I didn’t deserve that. I might have tolerated all those things and let you get away with a lot but no one will ever treat me that way again. I will never value you someone more than myself.

My happiness will never be defined in the eyes of a boy. Because you weren’t a man. But one day you will be. One day you’ll grow up and realize what you had only long after not having it. One day the regrets of your past will keep you up at night as you did me for so long. One day my name will come across your tongue and you’ll be the one hurting. I would not wish pain upon you. I would never wish heartbreak. But if things I do wish for you is learning to never treat another person as you have me.

I refuse to say I hate you because you and I both know I’d be lying. But I’m walking away to find a love that deserves me and when I do, I look forward to forgetting you and forgetting all we weren’t because you didn’t even have the decency or respect to call me yours. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

About the author

Kirsten Corley

Writer living in Hoboken, NJ with my 2 dogs.

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