It will start one day just like any other. Something will be said, a disagreement will be had. It won’t be anything that alarming. Nothing you haven’t argued about before. Your mind will trace back to the last time you two fought about this. That gut instinct will hit you subtly. Something isn’t right.
Then it will be a lie told over breakfast. A disingenuous laugh at dinner. The realization you’ve stopped paying attention halfway through conversations. It will be forgetting to stock their favorite cereal, forgetting to ask them how their day was – weaving yourself in and out of their life just enough to keep your presence there but with enough distance they begin to feel that cool air between you.
They’ll ask you if everything’s alright. You’ve been distant. You haven’t been yourself. Is everything okay between us? You’ll pull them close and reassure them with lines you say but aren’t sure you mean. It will feel like an out of body experience almost. You can see yourself telling them you know, you’re right. I don’t feel like myself these days but it will be okay. we’re fine. everything’s fine. I love you. and you’ll feel detached, not present, like someone else is using your body to say these things.
Then you tell yourself you’re being ridiculous. You want this, you want them. You’re just going through a hard time right now. It’s a hard time of year. The weather sucks. Everything’s gray. You didn’t get your raise. You’ll put the blame on everything else, anything else but them or you. You don’t want to admit it could be one of you, the two of you together. No, because together the two of you are perfect. You can work through anything. And isn’t that what you do for the person you love – the wonderful person who looked at you one day and found something appealing about all of those flaws and experiences and human flesh that make you who you are?
Don’t you owe it to them to try again, harder, with more vigor? Maybe this time things will be different, you’ll be different. Then you’ll realize you’re just fooling yourself because things are different now. Much different. You’re no longer the same two people you were when you met. You’ve stopped feeling that fervid hunger for them when they’re absent, stopped reaching for them in your sleep.
So you’ll end it because you know it’s for the best, it’s the right thing to do. You’ll separate your things into his and her boxes and silently wonder how you’re ever going to feel whole again. You’ll convince yourself you two will stay friends while secretly knowing you’re simply lying to yourself to pass the time.
You’ll occupy yourself with friends, with junk food, with vices and bad habits and dating profiles that mean nothing. It will take one month, six months, a year before you find the strength to move on, to love again. But that’s what you have to remember – you will love again.