Let Me Tell You All the Things You’ve Ruined


When any type of relationship ends, there are certain things that go with it. There are some songs that can no longer be played and restaurants that can’t be entered. That one perfume is thrown in the garbage even though the bottle is half full just because it was his favorite. Sometimes it’s an animal that he loved or a television show that was watched together.

Here are the things you have ruined for me.

Skateboards and lavender. You have ruined beanie hats. You have ruined anyone who wears running sneakers with jeans. You have ruined jasmine tea and the science fiction section of bookstores.

Striped blankets and black and white photographs? Ruined. Beautiful piano music before bed? Not anymore.

You know what else you’ve ruined? Rain. Literal weather. I used to love it. But now I see you standing there with me while we talked. I hear you telling me to get inside before I catch a cold. I feel the warmth from you that always came with the falling water.

Is it possible to ruin a look? Because you certainly had one in your eye when you tried not to laugh at something I said. A look that made me feel like I was the only living soul in the universe. I don’t even know if anyone else has that look but if someone does, you’ve ruined it for me. Thanks. You have ruined a number of things. Some that I loved and some that I never had a strong opinion on in the first place. In fact, you’ve ruined things that I never had an opinion on at all but I do now.

Let me tell you about some other stuff you’ve ruined.

You’ve ruined my fear of saying no. You’ve ruined the welcome mat that I sometimes became and the part of me that said okay when it wasn’t. You have completely destroyed the hesitant smile that came with some of your unfunny jokes and insulting comments. Remember the girl who waited for you to call and went to bed sad when you didn’t? She’s gone. You have single handedly ruined those parts of me.

There was a time when I would thank you for that. I would thank you because without you, I would still let people walk all over me or say yes to everything even if I wanted to say no. Right? No. Because some of these bits of me were planted by you. So I don’t thank you for taking the dark parts of me with you. They were yours to begin with. I already have my flaws. I don’t need yours dragging me down.

To be honest, you’ve ruined a lot.

But there’s some stuff that you never touched.

You never touched the sun or got near the full, chest burning, stomach twisting laughter. You were never near my favorite color or lilacs at sunset. You never dipped your toe in the salty water or had a chance to mess up that feeling of driving with the windows down. And me.

You did not ruin me.

So maybe relationships end and things are ruined. It sucks that the catchy song of the summer has to be turned off immediately. But new songs will be played. I’m sorry if a certain kind of car has to be put up for sale but there are many others in the lot.

There is still so much to come. There is still so much to love. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Leanne is a writer from New York who is trying to make sense of it all.

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