I can never be friends with you, for you conquered me.
Or I probably submitted myself to you. I can’t recall. This I know, though: I was your perfect subject until I was no use at all.
I took life’s beating, both yours and mine. I embraced every bit of you. I knew all your deep-seated pains and superficial scars. I knew you better than you know yourself, for I counted all the skeletons hidden inside your closet, even those unknown to you. I fought the monsters under your bed. I knew you so well that I forgot that I had my own battles, too.
That was how much I loved you.
Trust me, I can never be friends with you, you who I knew so deeply.
Because my love for you wasn’t bounded by the relationship. And no matter how limited my stake is (as a friend), I know I’d find myself fighting for you again. I would fight your battles for you. And believe me when I say I’d protect you once more, because the duty of the king’s guard does not end in his relief.
But when you let me go, you ordered me to serve another king. And I can never be friends with you because I can never serve two masters at the same time.
I can never be friends with you. For you were a promiseland and I was the chosen one until I was not.
I walked miles for you, miles away from my personal dreams, for yours were much more important than my own. That’s how much I loved you. I did everything, poured out every little trinket of my soul into your own. What was mine was yours.
I gave you all of me, until there was nothing left to give. All that was left was a dried husk, void of requited affection or affirmation. You siphoned me. And I was okay with it because I thought love was about giving and sharing. But there is so much more to love than that, I suppose like security, relinquishment, and warmth.
I can never be friends with you, for you were a scar, a reminder of who I once was.
You changed me this much. You opened me up and exposed me to the bitterness of the world, the reality that love can be unforgiving.
And yet, despite all the breaking and burning, I still love you. Probably because that’s how true love really manifests. Unrequited yet sufficed. Restless yet calm. Enfolded yet exposed. Bare yet warm.
Love is a paradox. You were my paradox.
So this I say: I can never be friends with you. Because I still love you.
But now I know better. My love for you doesn’t mean I need to be with you. I love you so much that I pray you settle in a warmer embrace. I love you so much that I hope you experience the depth and breadth of love, both a learning of its own. I love you so much that I accept that you were not meant for me and I was not meant for you. Trust me, I can never be friends with you.