To The Guy I Should Have Given A Chance To

James Harris

I know the phrase it’s not you, it’s me is so cliché, but it really wasn’t you. It really was me.

The only real cliché here is me. I’m that girl – one with a twisted list so high. I can check off having terrible taste in men. I’ve been through every single type: the unavailable, the abusive, the possessive, the ones who could care less, the cheaters, the emotionally unavailable, the ones afraid to commit, the fuckboy, and the list goes on.

There’s something broken in me, something not right, something that’s always been addicted to being ruined – to feeling pain. I could sit here and explain all the (very accurate) theories my therapist and I have for this. Paint you a picture of my past, walk you through my sordid history with darkness. But the truth is none of it matters. I just am this way.

I’ve always been drawn to things that aren’t good for me. More than that, I really am a masochist. In every way you can think of, emotionally even. I do so much to hurt myself, so much to act like my own worst enemy, that sometimes I wonder if I really am that sick, if I actually am capable of enjoying the bleed.

The thing is you could have been very good for me. I know this. I knew it then. I know it now and today there’s a huge part of me that kicks myself for doing what I did and not what I should have. I must admit, I regret not letting you in. I regret doing everything I possibly could to push you away and not let you get close to me. I regret not seeing a good thing when it was right in front of me. I regret not believing good things, in softer things; I regret not believing there could be more to than those things I am familiar with.

Today there’s a small aching in some deep part of me that wonders what if. Today I regret not giving you a chance.

You were so authentically kind to me that it made me afraid. Part of it was my habit of pushing people away, part of it was my terrible taste in men, part of it was me finding it so hard to believe someone could actually be that good to me.

You always knew the right things to say. You always inquired about my day, so much so that it made me feel like you thought of me throughout yours. You said things like “hey gorgeous” and “I miss you beautiful.” You had a genuine desire to see me and spend time with me. You exhausted your efforts in trying to take me out, in trying to make it known how you felt, in trying to make me feel special.

You saw more in me than just the darkness. You saw more than any guy ever did. You saw me as more than just a girl with a body. You wanted to touch me, to reach me, but not just in a physical sense. You wanted to know me. You saw me as not just a woman, but as a person.

I’ve had flings, I’ve had lovers, I’ve been in actual relationships, and no one ever saw more in me, no one ever wanted to see more of me than just my skin.

I know you probably wouldn’t have ever done a thing to hurt me. I remember you telling me, “all I want to do is you smile.” I should have let you. I wonder if I would be smiling now. I wonder what we would be doing together tonight. I wonder if my laptop and notebooks would be more full of beautiful things than the painful ones I write in them. I know you wouldn’t have been the answer to the ashen clouds that have always followed me around, but I know that with you I would have moments that I’d remember that the sun felt like on my skin.

I want you to know I would do things differently now. I wouldn’t be so cynical, I wouldn’t close myself off the way I did, I wouldn’t have doubted your intentions, I wouldn’t have refused to believe that maybe I deserved more than all I had ever known. I would have never hurt you.

You’re one hell of a guy. I hope that somewhere out there, there is a girl who knows this, who sees this, who accepts she deserves more, who knows you are more, who accepts all the things I didn’t let you give to me – all those things I wish I had now.

I really meant it. It really wasn’t you. It really was me. What happened had nothing to do with your shortcomings but with mine. And today, all I can hope is that someone like you once again comes my way. TC mark

Natalia Vela

writer on the storm.still checking books out from your local library.

To love yourself should be no quiet affair, but a loud uprising.

“Never forget,
you are more powerful
than you are damaged
and you will rise
from any abyss
they drown you in.”

— Nikita Gill, Your Heart Is The Sea

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