You Were Everything I Shouldn’t Have Wanted But I Did

Elizabeth Tsung

I miss you. I know it’s crazy. So much time has passed. I know that by now I should be over you.

I should be exploring new relationships and giggle with my friends over the cute guy on the other side of the room and talk about celebrity crushes and listen to love songs while dreaming of future loves.

I should be looking forward. Not backward. Not back at you. Not back at us. Not back at everything I lost.

I wish I knew how to do that. I wish I was the girl who knew how to just pick herself back up and move on.

I wish I was the girl who could see clearly how much of a train wreck she had almost gotten involved in and felt relief that she was finally off the tracks.

I wish everyone insisting that I “dodged a bullet” resonated and made sense and was an acceptable end to a doomed beginning. I wish I was the strong girl. The no-problem-moving-on girl. The “it will all work out for the best” girl. But I’m not. And I don’t know how to be.

Especially since the most poignant moments when I felt strong and confident, and alive were when I was standing next to you. And you were looking at me like I was something astoundingly beautiful. Something worth gazing at. Something worth your time. Something worth your love.

But that time has passed and somehow, you’ve gone from looking at me like I was the most treasured part of your life to not even caring to ask how I am anymore.

You don’t text me or call me and I know that you purposely avoid events where we might chance to meet. I know you’re trying to erase me from your slate. Trying to wipe yourself clean of me. And God, that hurts like hell.

You have left me crippled. You have destroyed me. My heart is no longer childish and trusting. It is closed. Closed and dark and coffin-like. And safe. Safe from hurt. Safe from blame. Safe from you.

It’s crazy how much I think about you. How much you plague my mind. How much you assault my heart. Everything reminds me of you. Even simple things like starry nights and snowflakes and your favorite songs. The place we met. The place where it all ended. The people you chose over me. The girl you decided was worth more than I was.

I never thought that city streets could be such a depressing place, but every time I find myself on one of our streets, it’s like I relive every moment all over again.

The way your hand felt draped around my knee. The way the silence between us was never unsettling but allowed us to reflect on the fact that we loved each other, and that was all that mattered.

The way everything finally seemed to fit together.

It all happened so fast. It’s surreal to think about how little time we had together. And how much happened in that time. I think that’s what they mean when they say time is relative. Months and years can pass without any monumental events, and often appear as only a matter of weeks, a matter of days. And then something insane can happen. Something that rocks the world and flips the universe on its head and makes you reconsider everything you thought you knew about life. About love.

I guess that’s what you were to me. You were a tornado. You were so beautiful to look at from afar. I watched you in awestruck wonder as you bellowed through the sky, soaking up the world, fighting for what you wanted. But then I made the tragic mistake of inviting you into my world.

And at first, I didn’t even realize that I was standing in the eye of a catastrophe so disastrous, that one wrong move could end in my devastation. But then, the solution seemed simple: don’t make a mistake, and it will all turn out okay.

What I didn’t account for was the fact that our fate didn’t just ride on me; it rode on you as well. For some reason, I didn’t understand that your mistakes could ruin us. Could ruin me. That is until they did.

This entire situation is just unbearably unfair. How is it fair that you should obliterate everything that we worked so hard to become, and walk away scot-free? As if it never happened? How is it fair that you could suddenly take a 180 and lock me out of your world without any warning, without even a simple “goodbye”?

How is it fair that after you coaxed me for so long, played me like a violin until I opened my heart to you, that you get to go back to your life as if I never even existed? How is it fair that I have to carry the remnants of a shattered love through every day of my life, while you are burden less and free?

All I ever did was stay true to you. All I ever did was cater to you and love you and choose you. All I ever wanted was for you to see how much we could be. And every time we were together, it felt as if you wanted the same thing. But then we’d separate.

And I’d hear about the traits that you kept hidden from me, the ones you fervently concealed because you knew that if they were to come to the light directly in front of me, I would run. You knew how fast I would bolt if I saw firsthand how wildly out of hand your temper was.

How little self-control you possessed. How every girl you ever loved was not a person, but a conquest, a war to be won. But the thing is that even though you tried to hide these things from me, I still heard about them.

Everyone tried to warn me. They tried so hard to pull me away from you. But I didn’t listen. I wanted to believe in you so terribly.

But the hard truth is that I was no different than every other girl you had wanted. I was a conquest. Merely a dot on the map. I wish I could believe differently. I wish I could deceive myself into believing that you just weren’t ready, that the timing just wasn’t right, that I was something substantial to you. But I can’t. Because I know the truth. And I know who the one most at fault is: me.

I kept putting my faith in all the places I shouldn’t have been.

I kept wanting to see you as someone that I could believe in.

And now it’s like your name is branded to my heart. Engraved into my bones.

I don’t think anyone really knows. We all just hurl out the same advice and hope that somehow it will mean something significant the thousandth time we hear it.

But no number of overused sayings and optimistic wisdom will ever heal the wounds of a betrayed heart. It’s all part of the journey. I guess we all must have our hearts cruelly manipulated once or twice before we learn that a guarded heart is the most valuable heart.

After you though, I can’t ever see myself loving the way I once did. Fully and foolishly. Wholly and unsuspectingly. Childishly and carefreely.

I am scared now. Terrified. Love was once the thing I sought after most in the world, the only thing I dreamed about containing.

And then for a few months, I had it.

I had the fairytale.

The hopeful dream.

The perfect lie.

But like all lies, the truth eventually came out.

This was just a lie. You were just a beautiful little lie. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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