Why Do Our Goodbyes Never Last?

You know as well as I do that I don’t like living on the edge. In fact, when it comes to someone like me, who plans years ahead, down to each and every detail and backup, it doesn’t make sense for me to go out of my way to fall so deeply in love with you that I lose my sense of self.

Yet, as I sit here trying to recall the sound of your laughter, I can’t help but come to terms with the fact that fighting with this is, and always was, absolutely pointless. Every time I try to, something on a cellular level rises within me to kill that very instinct. And therefore, I can’t help but conclusively say that our goodbyes never last.

I find myself thinking back to the way it feels to be next to you. I can’t help but regret how we let seconds slip by where our fingers weren’t interlocked.

I can’t help but feel anxious about the minutes gone to waste where my head didn’t rest on your chest, with your head placed gently on mine, with me sniffing your cologne on your neck and you sniffing my hair with a gentleness I didn’t know you possessed.

I can’t help but mourn the hours gone by where we tried to make small talk, filling in the awkward spaces between the last time we met and our frequent farewells.

Why do our goodbyes never last?

They’re always on the tip of our tongues, aren’t they? Your goodbye is less candid, more damage control. You can’t afford to end things on a bitter note. It’s strange, because you won’t even remember what note we would potentially end things on—that’s just who you are.

Perhaps it’s less damage control and more sheer indifference. Perhaps goodbyes don’t mean as much to you as they do to me. How am I to know anyway? It’s not like you’re an open book.

It took me years to thoroughly study you, each chapter a test of its own, often a riddle I struggled to solve. And now that I do have you all figured out, I suppose the answers I know I possess terrify me. But you don’t have time to dwell on that, do you?

Why then, even so, do our goodbyes never last?

My goodbyes are more strained, and they come from a place of heartbreak, pain and confusion. They’re filled with more emotion than you can fully process. It’s easier to not feel anything at all than deal with the enormity of the human condition, isn’t it?

I labor to perfectly word my goodbyes—write them out, practice, discard, repeat—yet, when I am in front of you, my mind dissolves all prepared speeches into a regurgitation of suppressed emotion.

My goodbyes come from telling you I love you, and you saying it back, albeit half-heartedly, thinking I don’t see through the forced reciprocation.

Despite this, our goodbyes never truly last.

Is it the way we’re completely different that inculcates this insane, unexplainable connection? Is it the way I fit perfectly between your arms, making us seem like two parts of two different jigsaw puzzles that, by some miracle, fit and form a new landscape of their own? Is it the way your scent lingers on my skin, even though six months will go by without us having met, or the way you remember what I love to eat the most, though you’ll forget almost everything else?

Perhaps there is no answer. Perhaps there is. Perhaps we’re just two entities that are tethered together by strings of our mind in a way that love, lust and every other mystic force in this universe has yet to explain.

Perhaps, when it comes to you and I, what we have is so inexplicably irrational and chaotic, yet beautiful and mesmerizing, that even goodbyes are ashamed to put an end to this unnamed, unlabeled, undefinable phenomenon. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Learning to channel my thoughts on paper.

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