31 days ago, the sinking in my chest felt physical. I was the 4 a.m. muffled cry, the girl who missed her bus stop that morning, for the first time, on the way to a friend’s. I was a zombie, I couldn’t focus, I couldn’t feel. 31 days ago, even my best concealer couldn’t do its job.
24 days ago, I went to the club for the first time in years. I was the girl who fell and hurt her knee, I was the girl who burst into tears, I was the girl who didn’t remember anything the next day. 24 days ago, the makeup could make me look pretty, but I was dead inside.
18 days ago, I saw his Tinder profile. I was the hesitation before appearing normal in front of a friend. I was the tight space in between my lungs. 18 days ago, I didn’t bother trying to conceal the bags beneath my eyes.
13 days ago, he talked to me. I felt calm flood back into me. I was the smile, I was the flowers blooming in my chest. 13 days ago, I cried hard, but it was the most alive I’ve felt in weeks.
9 days ago, I stayed at home for the first time since the break up. I slept most of the day away, but the moments I was awake I felt so lonely. It was a scary feeling, after being together for so long, that there was no longer a constant person to fall back on. 9 days ago, I felt so much regression.
5 days ago, I placed myself in a social setting where we would have been if we were still together. I enjoyed myself that day, but I was guilty precisely because I did. 5 days ago, it hit me that everybody knew about the break up, and that it was bigger than just the both of us. It felt truly real.
Today I spent time with my family. Tomorrow I’ll be going out with a friend. In 4 days I’d be celebrating my 22nd birthday. In 26 days I’ll be flying abroad for 5 months. In a month he’ll start working. In 2 months he’ll celebrate his 24th birthday with his first paycheck.
He will not be the person I marry, or have kids with, or grow old with. But he was my best friend, he believed in me, and he propped me up at my weakest moments. And I miss him every day. It doesn’t matter who I’m with – at the back of my head he is always there. Every event feels like a mini break up, over and over and over again. Nobody can fill this void, and nobody should be able to. He came and he left with a piece of me and today I cannot soothe this ache. It’s so hard.
But every day that I can get myself out of the house is a small victory. Every day passes with me hopeful and in anticipation that one day, I will have stopped counting the days.
One day at a time.