The Night We Met
“I had all and then most of you, some and now none of you”
I sat only one chair away from her in the coffee shop, but we felt galaxies away; an insurmountable space that physical beings could never cross, only light from the past. I hadn’t seen her for months, and we hadn’t talked since she met him. I mean…we had texted, but nothing more than the “hey, let’s catch up soon” bullshit, only to leave the reuniting of our minds at the “sure, whenever you’re free next.”
It wasn’t talking like we used to talk, because back then, it was never talking. We merged minds, shared souls, met beyond the physical space and into a neighborhood that we had constructed out of the organic substance of our thoughts. The labels-don’t-work-for-us stage of any romantic relationship appeared imminent, on the tips of our tongue…
But now, the seat, the him, their love, and my fears, all locked me out of our own suburban avenue.
Although painful, I told myself the denied access must be accepted. And in an attempt to dull the heartache, I resorted to the same excuses I fell in love with after relationships of the past had also fossilized:
“I’m just happy she’s happy.”
“She showed me that people like her exist, that it’s possible to find someone you genuinely care about.”
“I don’t want to hurt her, they seem so content, so light and happy.”
“I’m okay with being friends, I just want her in my life.”
“I don’t want to lose her, so however I can fit in any void she has left, I’m ready.”
“She taught me what beauty truly means, and now I’m ready to find it outside myself, outside us.”
Hidden within these excuses lay the truth I wanted to avoid: the fairytale version of she and I were gone. No longer could I cling to the thought that one day she’d leave him and I’d receive that call at an hour that could only be interpreted as “I miss you”.
I begged to believe the “rational” words of “letting go” and “moving on”. Logic screamed at my heart to pump the brakes of my emotions, to pick up my head and look toward tomorrow’s love.
But something always stalled my heart in this felt-too often position. Moving on was accepting the imagined neighborhoods were a temporary mirage, that the missed calls would never be from her, and that there would always be a seat in between us.
I think what holds me, and a lot of us back from accepting this truth, lies in the idea that our love could one day go down in a hollywood confession of love…
Our hands accidentally colliding, my confidence erupting, the boom box echoing that sappy romantic song we both loved, revealing to her the potential of us. Suddenly, she snags my hand’s grip, my pupil’s attention, and with the sun’s setting behind us, we move forward.
But this never happens right? Enacting this idea comes with the risk of losing her entirely. If her response to the idea of a future together does not mirror my own, the relationship post-confession quickly spirals. Right? Isn’t editing my love out of conversations, and attempting to cling to a dilapidated semblance of something (no one would) call “friendship”…the right thing to do? The risk is too great to lose her entirely. The “let’s just be friends” relationship path makes sense, it’s logical, it’s the healthy thing to do…Right?
Don’t believe any of that bullshit.
Every person you surround yourself with, both physically and emotionally, should love and know your authentic self. If authenticity isn’t possible, the relationship is not worth clinging to. By chiseling out words, moderating language, and damming a powerful emotion you become something less than authentic.
Holding myself back from sharing my true emotions because of a fear that I may lose her as “a friend” should never exist. When I feel love, it becomes an constant undertone in every conversation and action. No matter how deep the container of emotion is stored, it refuses to be buried for long.
Yes, the thought of letting someone go feels almost unbearable. I was scared and terrified of losing her. I felt physically heavy, almost burdened every day just thinking the possibility of her and I was truly gone.
But I have to understand that the moment I realized we fell apart occurred hundreds of days past the crevice’s creation. I had altered myself amidst the new geography of our relationship and the carving had whittled myself down to a carcass of my past self. I was numb to the truth that…
Moderated pieces of you are not you.
Half of her is not her.
When you realize the fear that held you back has already actualized, it makes it easier to take that risk. The uncertainty of “losing her” could not fathomably exist because I had already lost all of her. The fear that I obsessed over was reality; a reality I failed to accept, and a reality I failed to challenge.
We must never let ourselves give in to lesser versions of our full identity amidst pursuits of love. We must act on the dreams we engineer in our mind’s cosmos and explore them without sacrifice. And if we can imagine a scenario with a dream, a her, a goal in our hands, we must pursue it embracing pure honesty, crystal courage, and clear authenticity.
Knock down the gated community. Merge your mind. Share truths.
One last time.
Show your full self and nothing less.
Let them go.
I keep telling myself to embrace a life of “why nots” and not “what ifs”. It may be easier to write than to accomplish, but even if thinking it produces an action that eliminates one wandering thought or produces an beautiful storyline I have to believe it’s worth it.