I’m heading home to Nashville. I look out the window as the plane drifts sluggishly through the rainy clouds, each raindrop lingering momentarily and then breaking apart reluctantly. In many ways I feel this myself. Two contriving thoughts, what I am doing and what I know I should be doing.
I think about you, I think about us. I wonder how I can continue to do this to myself. To pretend that I have something that I don’t. To pretend that being with you, without the title, without the promise of a tomorrow, without the stability of a “we” is enough. How could it ever be enough? Should it be enough?
I begin to doubt my ability to love.
This relationship that is so perfect in so many ways, is also slowly, and all encompassingly taking pieces of my confidence, my pride, and my belief in love.
I feel happy with you, despite the gnawing feeling in the back of my mind telling me that it’s short lived. A relationship on borrowed time and knowing that deep down, you have one foot on the door precipice just waiting for the right moment to leave. I think about this generation and how dating has become this long and drawn out phase without commitment, but yet claim over another person. The “Grass is Greener” mentality: the idea that there may be someone better out there, so stay ‘somewhat’ single.
I think about my life without you, how empty and hard each day would be. I would go to work, numbingly fumbling my way through the day just hoping to keep myself together long enough that I don’t cry in front of my coworkers. I would agree to drinks after work, and as much as my girlfriends would try to assure me that I will find someone better and that you weren’t right for me, I won’t care because you are all I wanted.
I go over every single detail of what could have possibly gone wrong. I form a blackboard in my mind full of questions with long equations that all come back to the same problem; “Why wasn’t I enough?”
I justify your choices.
I pin everything that went wrong in the relationship on myself because that somehow makes me feel like I had some control in the outcome. My friends carry on happily, talking about some couple I met last year that are getting married next month, or the stellar presentation they just gave at work. As much as I try to listen and distract myself from obsessing over the last text you sent, I can’t stop and I really don’t want to. Thinking about you keeps the relationship alive, and I’m not ready to let it go.
I think about the choices I have, and how neither one gives me you. I could stay in this almost relationship, prolonging the pain of losing you. I could end what we have, knowing it was my choice with the frustrating reoccurring feeling that maybe, just maybe, I just expected too much.
I think about the choice I hope to make by the time the plane lands. The seatbelt sign chimes pleasantly, “we will be landing soon”. Suddenly glimmers of pastures and farm land peak through the clouds. I think about why so many of us spend so much time with the wrong person, why we waste our youth in these ‘almost but not quite’ relationships. Why is breaking up and not revisiting an old relationship seemingly impossible with social media and the inability to leave the past in the past?
The plane begins to approach the tarmac, barely hovering above the ground. Touch down. The rush of speed runs through my body, sending vibrations to my core, before slowing to a crawl. I think to myself… I just keep thinking to myself, I will never be able to make a choice when it comes to you, there’s not a choice at all.