I’ve always been better at saying goodbye than I have ever been at saying hello. Saying goodbye is concrete. There’s a finality to it that hellos just can’t give anyone.
Saying hello is full of questions and anxiety. You never quite know when that hello will turn sour. And you never know when those hellos will someday end.
Of course not every hello ends with a goodbye. Not every hi ends with a bye. Not every hug ends in rejection. And not every kiss ends in a breakup.
It’s not that I think saying goodbye is easy. I promise you, it’s anything but that. It’s hard. It’s hurtful. And it feels terrible. But, at least after goodbye, it will fully end. At least after goodbye, there is an agreement that it is done. At least after saying goodbye, you don’t have to be rejected from that person ever again.
At least after goodbye, you get to start all over again.
You get to attempt to erase the past, to begin again and rise once the dust has settled. There’s a tragic beauty in saying goodbye, and in agreeing to come undone.
I wish I could confidently say hello to someone who I thought was cute in a bar. I wish I could confidently walk up to someone I admire and introduce myself. I wish I could say hello without any fear or limitations. I wish so desperately that I could say hello without hesitation and without a second thought.
But I can’t say hello anymore without thinking that it won’t work out. I can’t say hello anymore without fearing that the end is near.
So, I got used to being good at goodbye. I got used to saying it and waving my right hand with tears streaming down my face. I got used to breaking up, and ending casual relationships. I got used to never letting my walls be brought down. And to never letting my curtains drop to the floor. I got used to feeling a safety net in goodbye. I got used to finally feeling free right after the words spilled from my mouth.
Maybe it’s messed up. Maybe there’s some sort of psychological meaning to this. Or maybe, I’m just petrified. Petrified of falling in love again, and losing it. Terrified of getting attached to the point of no return.
But truly, all I really want is to say hello. All I really want is to say it, no matter the outcome it may bring me. All I really want, is to say hello without the whispers of goodbye echoing in my mind.
But tell me, how long does it take for a hello to become permanent? And what happens if you want a forever of hellos with someone who only sees you as a final curtain call?