To The Almost Boyfriend Who Never Was

Have you ever wanted to write a letter to someone and never send it? Have you ever had a yearning to get out all of your emotions, but somehow keep them in at the same time? Well, this is mine. This is my letter to my never boyfriend. It’s a letter to the one that never was, likely never will be, and probably shouldn’t be…

Hey you.

The honest truth is that I find an inexplicable desire to thank you. At some point, I needed to say this, even if you might never read it. And even if you were only in my life a brief moment, your influence was limitless even in its brevity.

The point is that for the few months you were in my life, you saved me. You never knew it, but you did. That broken little heart of mine fell for you the moment you said I had pretty eyes at the bar. Cheesy, sure, but hell, it worked with that smile of yours. It worked well enough for me to hold your hand the rest of the night as if we always had.

And so we went on as college kids do. A handful of dates that included Greek functions and frozen yogurt. What seemed like nothing at the time resulted in the ability to mend my heart. Funny thing is that you hurt me, too. But by that time, you reminded me of who I was. By then, I was confident about my love for cats, my need to help others, and my ability to trip over nonexistent objects. Most importantly, you reminded me how to smile.

And I got to say it felt good to smile at you. You were immature. I was naïve. You were straightforward. I was complicated. You had feelings for more than just me. But I was just happy to have feelings for someone else, or to have feelings other than wretched sadness. So you’d misspell words, but I’d still smile at your text. You wouldn’t remember me taking you home, but you’d appreciate waking up to water, Advil, grilled cheese, and a get-well note.

But we didn’t work. Life went on and it went on easily without you. I always considered you just a fun memory of college among the rest. I saw you since then… It was always paired with a short smile and small talk. I didn’t think much about it three years later when I agreed to a date over an out-of-the-blue text. I went in with no expectations. I laughed at the idea of where I was headed when the car pulled up. Well, I was surprised by what I found. I found it was easy.

It was all just so easy. I fell into your smile so quickly again that I had to look away. But I couldn’t ignore it when you listed everything you remembered about me, because truthfully I had forgotten all about you. Somewhere between beating you at arcade games and you winning not one but two tacky stuffed pandas, I remembered one thing…

A broken heart can still feel. Somehow you’ve found your way to me twice now — each time, after a break-up. From your silly remarks when you try to sound smart to impress me to that sweet smirk you give me when I notice you staring, it was just easy. And I finally remembered it should never be hard.

Even so, we’re probably not meant for each other. You hate my cat. I hate how you always lose your wallet. You like scary movies. I cringed when you took me to one. But then again, you’ll sing country with me, and you won’t let me win at air hockey just to be a gentleman.

Maybe in the short term, you’re just what I needed to smile again. I’ll be grateful for your presence in my life either way. You were never perfect and neither was I. But you at least reminded me that I didn’t have to be.

So I thank you in words you’ll likely never see. I thank you so maybe someone else with more guts will write a letter like this and actually put the stamp on the envelope. I write to you, to inspire someone else to do more than me. Maybe, hopefully, surely, this honesty will inspire other thank you letters. Maybe someone will send his or her truth.

After all, a hopeless romantic can only hope. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

featured image – Lulu Lovering

Writer, Founder & Poet

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