One of the times I feel most alone is when I step outside during a Michigan night in February, when all you hear is the crunching of snow beneath your feet. There are no birds chirping, no crickets, nothing that gives you the sense anyone or anything besides you is awake and alive. Loving you kind of felt like that.
And if loving you was a cold winter night, then it was also an early sunny morning in July, with all the hope and promise the beginning of the day brings. We could run around outside, be by a lake. But that day ended with a tornado, crushing all my plans and hopes in its path.
Loving you was a fucking whirlwind.
But in the moments between the chaos of loving you, was laughter. Wonder. Your abrupt laugh made me feel like I earned it. It was in these instances, these shallow shards of hope, that made me feel maybe this could work out.
That maybe loving you made sense.
And this is why I hung on. Oh, did I hang on to every little kind word and smile that made me believe that you weren’t going anywhere. That you would change your mind. That you would realize it was me.
Despite all of the hope these little moments brought, loving you was quiet. It was the text that never came. It was the open seat in the movie theater where I felt like reaching out for the hand that wasn’t there. It was looking right into your eyes and finally seeing you did not, and would not, look at me the same.
Because it was my faulty eyes that saw more than there was. It was my clumsy heart that beat on so strong and so hard that I thought it would burst through my chest and demand that you fix it. But you couldn’t mend it.
After all, you didn’t trick me into love. You warned me.
You told me it was bad timing, that you weren’t ready. Sometimes, it’s hard to tell when hopeful becomes foolish, but I think I know now. I think it looks a lot like me chasing after you.
And as loving you fades into the past, I remember all these things that it was. It was wonderful. It was terrible. Young. Temporary. But mostly, it was lonely. Loving you was the loneliest thing I ever did.