Sweet Girl, Maybe He’s Too Late

Phung Hai

You’ve been hoping, wishing, waiting for him to call. You’ve been busying yourself with projects and plans, filling your calendar with lunch dates with girlfriends and workout classes and part-time jobs to fill the empty spaces in-between. You’ve been pretending that you don’t miss him, that you don’t reread through the old texts, that you don’t find yourself scrolling through old pictures of you two, so full of life and love.

You’ve been forcing yourself to think of something, anything else, diving headfirst into that bucket list, into those to-do notes, into relationships that you’ve neglected during your time together.

You’ve been working on you, on your goals, on anything and everything that contains no trace of him.

You’ve been acting like you’re fine, letting go and moving on. Until suddenly, surprisingly, you did.

One day you woke up and didn’t immediately think of him, didn’t automatically find yourself wandering to thoughts of the two of you together, walking hand-and-hand into another day.

One day you rolled over and didn’t feel his absence on the other side of the bed. You brushed your hair and got dressed without wondering whether he’d like the new jeans you bought. You made breakfast that didn’t include his usual request of sunny-side eggs. You got ready for work. You answered emails. You scrolled through your social media. You got in your car and turned on your favorite radio station.

And you didn’t think about him at all.

You let him go.

It wasn’t easy. There were days when it hurt so bad you wanted nothing more than to just sulk in your misery, wrap the blankets tightly around you and call in sick to work with the debilitating ache of a broken heart.

You had slivers of hope that he would return, and they were crushed. You had days where you wondered whether you could actually make it work, and they were defeated. As time passed, you moved on. You found new people, a new purpose, a new sense of hope and self-love.

And then, just as suddenly as you found yourself over him, you found him trying to come back.

This was subtle at first, a few texts here and there, maybe a voicemail or ‘like’ of an old photo that sent your heart spinning into overdrive. Here was the man you lost, the man who walked away, leaving your heart a mess on the floor, the man who said goodbye, giving you no choice other than to let go because he had already released his hold.

But here he was, coming back.

Before you knew what was happening, he was asking what your Friday night plans were. He was bumping into you at the local bar. He was wondering about your love life, your work, your family. He was making a small space in your life, wedging his way through your stubbornness and independence to hopefully make a home.

And then, he was wanting you back.

Not just the causal, ‘I miss you,’ or ‘I haven’t seen you in forever,’ but the ‘I want you in my life. I’m sorry. I need you.’ that pulled the rug right from under you.

How dare he walk back into your life as if nothing had changed, as if there hadn’t been months and years since you’d last seen him, as if everything could, and would, fall back to how it used to be.

You were angry, confused, frustrated and elated. You were hopeful, suddenly, at the prospect of getting back together. And then you were disappointed in yourself for even considering him.

This is no hard decision, no easy place to be when you finally let go of someone you know you needed to, and find them back in your life as if nothing changed.

But sweet girl, please remember this—there comes a time when love grows up, stands up, and knows what it wants. There comes a time when you don’t have to question someone’s intentions or desires because they are clear, because they are present, because that person never left.

You may have let go of him, you may be in love with him still, but you need to ask yourself this: Do you want him back for the right reasons? Does he deserve a place in your heart? Are you willing and able to love him enough to forgive him, to bring him back in? And is he worthy?

Does he love you enough to never let you go?
Did he already lose you?

Maybe he’s lost his chance this time around. Maybe he should have known months and years ago that you were the one he wanted. Maybe he’s a little too late.

I know this hurts. I know this is confusing. I know there’s a weight on your chest too heavy to bear. But you have to know what you deserve, sweetie. You have to know that there is love out there that never leaves. And maybe, just maybe, that’s the person you should be pursuing.

The one you don’t have to chase because he’s beside you.
Because when push comes to shove, he stays. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Marisa Donnelly is a poet and author of the book, Somewhere on a Highway, available here.

About the author

Marisa Donnelly

Marisa is a writer, poet, & editor. She is the author of Somewhere On A Highway, a poetry collection on self-discovery, growth, love, loss and the challenges of becoming.

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