You’re the You who everyone knows. The You who gave me the butterflies that everyone feels but always seem unique. The You who had the power to lift me up as easily as you could knock me down. The you who I made plans with that I never made with anyone before. The You who I honestly believed was forever. The You who I swore I would never lose.
It was my biggest fear. I used to wake up in the morning and think about how lucky I was to have you. Then I started to wake up in fear that it would be the day you said goodbye. There was a time when my feet couldn’t move fast enough to meet you. Then before I knew it, they were moving fast to try and catch up to you. All along, I knew that you were slipping away. It’s not a feeling that I can fully explain. The joy in your eyes turned tired. Your stories were getting shorter when you used to talk in circles. The late nights became early ones. The morning breakfasts were forgotten.
I should have pulled away. I should have known better. But you were the You. How could I let that go? So instead I used all my energy to try and keep you. I spent my days thinking about what you like. I would go shopping and look at clothes that I thought you would prefer. I started listening to new music with you in mind. I even ate food based on what you ate. I was so focused on being your You that I lost me.
Who was that?
I used to walk barefoot in the grass and bask in the feeling of the blades between my toes. Now they stabbed me. I used to say whatever was on my mind. Suddenly I was questioning my thoughts. I didn’t have time for my friends anymore. I didn’t have time to read or paint. My smile used to always reach my eyes. It soon became forced. I was so tired but I had no energy to sleep.
My priority was keeping a guy who didn’t want to be kept.
And in the end, I lost you anyway. The You who I didn’t think I could live without.
I once believed that that was the great tragedy of our story. I couldn’t get you to stay. I failed.
But that’s not the great tragedy, is it? Because I kept on living. The sun rose and I went about my days without you there. The difference was that I didn’t recognize me. I didn’t know who my own company was anymore. I definitely missed you.
I missed me more.
It has taken a long time to find me. I would find pieces in the smallest nooks of the world. My friends’ laughter, the cities I finally saw after years of promising “one day,” the freshly painted nails, and the books that came at the right time. I found me in the days with the perfect breeze and the nights of thunderstorms, tucked away in the folds of my blanket.
Most of all, I found me in the words. The words that I was terrified to write. The words that would make it all true. Now I can say it. I can write it.
The saddest chapter wasn’t losing you after all, it was losing me.
I’ll never get you back but I found myself.
And no other ending could ever be so happy.