It’s over. I love(d) you. I’m not mad.

Those three phrases have been rattling around inside my head ever since it happened. Individually I can make sense of them but together? Together they are foreign. Insoluble.

I’ve never had an end like this. My endings are always chafe and shrouded in anger. I preferred to shield myself with mental weaponry; numbness and resentment, distraction and denial. “He was such an asshole”, I’d indignantly tell my best friend on the phone, “I’m glad it’s over”. But this time was different.

I’m not mad at you. And the truth is, I have no idea how to navigate an end without anger. I feel naked. Exposed. Left out with my heart vulnerable and raw, to be picked at by the vultures of all of our memories. Everything feels sharp. Those streets we walked on every weekend on the way to buy our over-priced dinner at Whole Foods, they’re tainted. The jacket you lent me that became mine feels like it’s burning a hole through my closet. My chest is heavy with the weight of all the love I had to give, but you couldn’t accept.

Near the end, loving you felt like trying to hold the tumultuous ocean in my arms. Fighting desperately to keep my head above water that was much too dangerous to swim in. Face always salty and choking for breath.

But I’m not mad because I love(d) you. I can see the darkness you have inside, the darkness that’s been there the whole time, slowly pulling you away from me. I know you didn’t hurt me on purpose. I know that you are scared and that I can’t fix you no matter how tightly I hold onto you. Right now, we are insoluble. I am letting you go because I love you.