When your name appeared on my screen I thought I was seeing things. I thought back to how long it’s been, knowing very well the exact time. Small talk and politeness of two familiar strangers filled the air, as I typed, deleted, reread things, not responding immediately.
It soon turned into, ‘Let’s grab a bite to eat,’ which left me in a room full of clothes on the floor with nothing to wear. Only to finally decide on the thing I chose first but initially hated.
I stood there waiting exactly on time both filled with excitement and fear. I wondered what you’d look like now. I wondered if you changed. I wondered in the moment I saw you, would a flood of emotions overcome me like they did when you left. I wonder how you’d feel seeing me.
Having done a double take more than once in the shop windows walking, I stood as confident as I could. But I knew even I was a different person than the one you knew. I knew standing there before you, I had to be.
You approached and my heart raced.
I realized something I probably always knew, that I did still love you, which scared me in a way.
I think there are certain people you’ll always love no matter what they do to you.
Despite so much time, you looked exactly the same. You looked a little older but still as handsome as I remembered.
You opened the door as we entered then pulled out my chair. I looked at you with a puzzled look across the table wondering. Wondering, if this was a mistake. Wondering, if I’d get hurt again. Wondering, who you were now and if parts of you were the same. Conversation flowed naturally as if time hadn’t passed at all. The past wasn’t brought up. Mistakes weren’t talked about. That night it all ended that haunted me still, was finally getting laid to rest.
It was a mix of nerves and comfort sitting there. I asked questions I didn’t know answers to because, in a time where I used to be a part of every day, I suddenly knew nothing about your life lately.
You beat me reaching for the bill and insisted on paying.
You walked me to my car but more than anything I began to wonder. Would we part ways another time for good? Would I hear from you or see you again? Was meeting a fluke of curiosity, just to see where I was or did you really miss me? But more than that I wondered, what I think every girl wonders:
‘Will I get hurt again?’
‘Has he changed?’
‘Was this a mistake?’
Because the thing about second chances, the things girls fear more than anything is realizing people don’t change. We hope they grew up and learned from their mistakes. We hope they actually miss us and aren’t just lonely.
We fantasize about the past and exactly what’d we’d say when and if we crossed paths with an ex but the truth is we are overcome with complete fear.
The second time around, we don’t trust as easily. The second time around, we question every word and every move. The second time around, we are looking out for ourselves because we know who a guy is at his worst and what he is capable of.
But more than anything we are going to make him work.
Because we don’t forget words said out of anger, we don’t forget the pain of looking at a phone in tears, we don’t forget crying ourselves to sleep and how much it hurt. Even if we forgive, we don’t forget. Even if we move on, we remember everything.
Because as much as relationships change, a girl after utter heartbreak changes more than anyone.
We change because we have to. We mature and grow up and realize that person who made us cry was the one not good enough. We realize our worth and value more after hitting rock bottom and standing up again. We realize no one will ever make us feel that way again.
But guys have a way of coming back around and when they do an apprehensive woman will stand before you because if anything goes wrong and if someone is going to get hurt, it sure as hell won’t be her twice.