I hope you find comfort in the thought that I still think about us, but rest assure that there is no glimmer of happiness left in the memories of you. With all that being said, I still hope you’re doing well. Just because I despise the time I wasted on us, doesn’t mean I’m not cheering for you to succeed. I hope life gives you the opportunity to be the best that you can be, because you definitely weren’t with me.

“You look like a wife, not a girl.” One of my co-workers continues to tell me this. She says my story just doesn’t fit. Awhile back when she was looking for relationship advice, I told her about my last one and how the man I thought I was going to marry, sat me down and said “I don’t love you anymore.” She couldn’t believe it. It helps that she started after I was done being a pathetic mess believing we could work things out. But hearing her say that I look like a wife, one that is being cared for by “an amazing dog loving man who worships me” shows that I have come a long way. I am my own person and my happiness comes from that. I am stronger. More self aware. I guess it was the final check that yes! I have moved on! Even if there hasn’t actually been anyone new to move on to lol but I’m ready and that in its self is amazing. Now I wonder what she’d say if I also told her about my first boyfriend…..

blurred

we were a roll
of polaroid pictures,
never quite steady,
the lines between us
always a little blurred.

coaxing smiles from 
your chapped and charming
lips became a habit
I willingly indulged in,
your boyish laugh
always tinged with a gravelly
tickle from the cigarettes
I pretended not to mind.

conjuring your face now
is like peering through
a pane of glass when rain
is pelting down and everything
on the other side is somewhat indistinct.

you’re not forgotten,
just fading.

a blur at the back
of my brain.

We lived in the same way, he and I. There was  so. much. love. We lived in a world I thought we’d built for just us two. I believed he was someone with whom I could go the distance, the entire journey, and he told me he was my person. The shocking end was nearly two years ago. Some days I still can’t shake it, the sensation that I was  thrown off-world and left for dead.

The letter I’ll never send.

I’m all sorts of emotionally fucked up. I don’t sleep right because my past is a horror show. I don’t open up because I don’t know how to speak of them. My life is a seesaw of good days and bad days. I am an imperfect man, and more often than not, I believe most people are better off without me. But I am not an awful man. I am an honest man. I am a man who does nothing but support and love and go above and beyond for the people I love. As much as I wish I could be, I am far from vindictive. And if I have ever loved anyone most, it was you.

You were the one that I loved hardest and fell hardest for. You were the one person I truly believed would never break me, and you did. I could never hurt you the way you hurt me. I could never say or do the things you said and did. I just could never. It’s so fucked up. You, by far, are the lowest I have ever been. I’ve never wanted the world to end as much as I did the day you decided to invalidate me. To invalidate our entire relationship. To taint my morality, my integrity as a person. When you were the one who I woke up for every morning. Who I fought my demons for. You were the one that told me I was a good man, despite all the things I thought of myself. And then one day you decided to say that I was all the things I fought so hard not to believe about myself. You and your family called me nothing short of a monster. I had no voice. No chance. And here we are, almost a year later and there is a resounding “How could you?” ringing in my heart. It echoes in my sleep. It shadows every “I love you” that leaves my lips. How could you? I trusted you. I respected you. And even today, I try so hard to hate you and I can’t. It’s all exhausting. I don’t know how to love without feeling the pain of your retreat. You could have called. You could have written all that you needed to say. But you didn’t. You didn’t give me the respect that I deserved, after all that we’d been through. You didn’t ask me anything.

I am imperfect. People who don’t know me, believe me to have the perfect life. And people who do know me, believe me to be stronger than I am. But I am a human being, with feelings. And I don’t pour all of my energy into a relationship for it to go sour, the way that it did. I lost in you, my best friend and the person I was sure I would spend the rest of my life with. I have spent almost a year climbing an emotional mountain, trying to be happy. Trying to move on and not give you another thought. Almost a fucking year.

It took you what? A month? A month to decide that I was no longer the love of your life. That I was a horrible person. My best friend in the world, that’s what I got from you. A slap in the face. A stab in the back. You ripped out my heart. How could I ever trust anyone again? It seems I will always be a mess, and I am truly sorry for that. But just because I am a mess, doesn’t make me a horrible person. It means I need to heal, and I’ve been doing that, however slow. It’s a shame you never saw it that way. But I am glad you are happy, truly. It’s all I ever wanted.

For all that one can dream

And wish

And aspire,

Sometimes all one gets 
is a tepid bed

With a half-filled cup of tea

And the worn-out pages of a book

Perched on pale, withering thighs

And all one can do

Is grasping and holding on
To those neatly printed words

Hoping to find

Self-content and compassion 

In the way Mr Darcy flexed his fingers

After touching Elizabeth’s hand

To retain a bit of her being

Once she departed in her carriage,

In the way Anna Karenina longed

To be forever held in the arms

Of the fleeing Count Vronsky,

In the way Heathcliff never stopped

Begging his Cathy to come back to him

When the storm outside was raging

And the windows of his 

Decaying mansion were quivering.

For all the ways one can inflict pain,

Dishonesty towards those whose affection 

For them has already been secured

Is the most despicable and

The hardest to find a remedy to.

For there is hardly a way of getting rid

Of something you once loved

With every fibre of your being. 

Those deeply-adored and yearned for things, 

They have become theirs forever. 

And the more you try to leave them behind,

The more they lurk in the hollows

Of your heart and then abruptly besiege you.

They end up haunting you.

They control,

They own your.

For all the regrets one can have,

Those four words I chose to impress

On my left forearm when I was seventeen

Will always be the most bitter one.

I was so ingenuous and had so much faith

To believe that carrying with me the words

‘She will be loved’ whenever I went 

And having them so close 

To the core of my own persona

Would eventually have resulted in me

Trusting them to the point of 

Them becoming true.

Almost five years later

And I walk around with the fear

Of having an irrevocable and 

Unforgiving lie tattooed on my skin

For everyone to see and deride.

Every time I look at them, it is

Another time that the promise

I’d made to myself has been broken 

And an opportunity for the sorrow I feel

To tighten its claws around my neck.

For all that one might fear,

however
I have finally crossed you off my list: 

For all the harm you could’ve done to me,

You’ve already done it all.

—  M.B, Lingering Guilt