My logic went as follows: If someone hurts you then you automatically want revenge. It doesn’t matter how long it takes, you want revenge. I thought, if I hurt her enough she would want revenge. Therefore, I wouldn’t have to worry about never seeing her again. Because that is what I feared most. The fact that I was losing her.
“They say the sea is actually black and that it merely reflects the blue sky above. So it was with me. I allowed you to admire yourself in my eyes. I provided a service. I listened and listened and listened. You stored yourself in me.”
- Diary of an Oxygen Thief (Anonymous)
What do you do when you realize the love of your life has always belonged to another? When the happy memories the two of you, memories that mean the world to you, mean shit to them? How do you drive by places the two of you visited with dopey looks in your eyes, and not want to dissolve into emotional turmoil? I wish I could tell you, but unfortunately I’m still trying to figure that out for myself. I read a quote the other day that said something similar to, “Too often we see people who aren’t in love and together, and people who are in love and aren’t” or some other bullshit to the same affect. However, that really hit home to me. I’m in love with someone who isn’t and never was in love with me, and the emotional devastation I felt when I realized this was so unfathomable that I wouldn’t wish it on even the most evil human being.
I grew up believing in the idea of soulmates, and spent the majority of my teenage years and even some of my adult life searching for that person. I sought out my happiness in the hearts and minds of men before I saw them for who they were. But I’m not here to talk about the boy who broke my heart at 15, or even the one who broke it again in May of my 19th year. No. This is about David.
At 18 years old, I realized that I was a raging alcoholic. Not all that hard to believe, sure, but still a shock factor to some. The indicator should have been when I flunked out of college due to being too drunk to attend my classes. I drank all day every day with the sole purpose of drinking my problems away. Ignorance is bliss, and when you can’t remember anything, all you can feel is bliss. When I came home after my one and only semester of college, I came to the conclusion that I would have to get a job to support my alcoholism, so I did. I went into work everyday with one singular thought on my mind, and the same thought before I went to bed, “I need a goddamned drink.” Surprisingly, it was easy to find for a 19 year old girl in a small, hick town. I had no serious relationship to worry about fucking up, and a dead-end job at an ice cream parlor, therefore, I had no consequence should I find myself suffering from drunken decision making.
Parties were easy to find during that summer, and I attended them at least 5 times a week. It was at a party such as this that I met David (introduced to me as Davi), whom I later had drunken sex with at a friend’s apartment while another friend watched. Imagine my surprise when I found out the next morning that the man I barely remembered having sex with had a girlfriend. I suppose I should have felt some guilt, but due to the alcohol still effecting my mind when I went to work the next morning, I found that I couldn’t have cared any less about it.
I put the man out of my mind, an easy feat since I hardly remembered even speaking to him, and my partying and fucking continued. I saw him after this of course, due to the limited amount of available partying space and mutual friends. After that first night, he always had his girlfriend with him. We didn’t speak. He and I weren’t friends or even aquatinted. We had merely shared orgasms after a night of alcohol consumption, and that was that. Up until the Fourth of July. A wild night for being a teenager in Louisa, Kentucky. I cleared the weekend with my family, and decided to myself that it was about time for a bender.
Friday night rolled around, and I found myself talking to Davi for the first time in months. No girlfriend to be seen, I thought that I might at least have an opportunity for a repeat performance of some of the best sex I’d ever had. I didn’t expect for him to ask me genuine questions or for him to take an interest in anything I had to say. The majority of conversations I’d been used to having at parties were, “So do you want to come back to my place after this?” Or, “Can we go upstairs for a quickie?” I blamed our conversation on the killer weed we’d smoked together, and went to bed with him eagerly that night.
The next morning, we continued to talk, and I found myself getting interested. Dangerous waters, I know, but I was intrigued. I’d never met another person who seemed so interested in how my mind worked and what I thought. It was addicting, more so than any drug I’ve ever had the pleasure of doing (more than I’d care to admit) and listening to him talk was worse. I hung onto every word he uttered with a reverence, as if he was telling me the secret of life.
This continued all weekend and into the next week until I found myself spending everyday by his side. He dutifully sat through meetings with my loud, obnoxious family and loved it. We went hiking, an activity I never particularly enjoyed until I did it with him. But the best days (or nights I should say) were spent at his best friend’s apartment, getting high and talking about literally anything that came to mind. I craved those days more than I ever craved alcohol, to the point I felt like I no longer needed to drink. I’d found a different way to lose my mind, and I lost it every day in him.
And the sex. My god the sex. Davi fucked me like he’d never fuck anyone ever again. It was passionate, loving, and just the right side of rough all at the same time. We’d stare into each other’s eyes as if we couldn’t believe we were so lucky to be seeing the other one naked. There was a kind of awe in the air every time we did it, and it was a heady, addictive feeling.
The night I snuck him into my house to ditch a party, I knew I was in love. That’s the exact moment I realized I was fucked. Up until now, it had just been a bit of fun, you see. We talked about things that mattered, hung out, and fucked, it was never supposed to go any further. There’d been no mention of the girlfriend. That was a topic we avoided altogether. Now, however, I was at the point of no return. How could I tell him that I had fallen in love along the way? That was never supposed to happen, and I hadn’t wanted it to. But you see, the universe has a special way of saying, “Fuck you” when you’re vulnerable like that.
So, within the week we were done. He and the girlfriend had decided that they were going to work through their issues, you see? She was the love of his life, he regretted everything we’d done. He wished he’d never spoken to me that weekend in July. So on and so forth. But, he had. He had willingly done this, both to himself and to me. For the first time in over a month, I was craving a drink. I wanted to drink and fuck him out of my memory, and out of my heart.
Of course I was due for another “Fuck you” from Fate, because he turned up on that lovely night in August where all I wanted to do was get blacked out drunk. He ended up holding me while I cried (a definite side effect if I’m drinking whiskey) and cuddled with me at that same friend’s apartment where we shared so many nights together.
And like so many men before him, I let him back into my life. I thought that by spending enough time together, I could make him fall in love with me too. An easy feat, I thought, since there were pre established feelings between us. I was dead wrong. Through every failed attempt, I stuck to my guns, thinking that eventually he’d see how much I cared for him and about him and realize, “Hey, I’ll never find another girl to love me as much as she does, I need to focus my attention on her.”
I can’t explain to you how wrong that I was. Up until this point I thought I was being successful. We would talk about our futures together, traveling the world and the children we would have together, most of these images and ideas conjured by him. I began to think that he might possibly be in love with me too, and I reveled in that feeling. The girlfriend was still not in the picture, we still avoided her name at all costs, lest even the mention of her shatter the fragile web we’d spun together.
Until she came back for good.
It’s been just over a week since he and I have talked, and I’ve never felt more empty in my whole life. He didn’t just break my heart, he ripped it out of my chest cavity and took it with him when he drove away from my house for the last time. Many times over the years I’ve thought about taking my life, even attempted to on more than one occasion. Now, that doesn’t even seem like it’s enough. I wish that I had never existed. To never be born would be better, for I never want to experience this feeling. Why humans were given emotions, I’ll never know. No animal should be subjected to this torture. Human emotions are a special kind of hell designed to prepare us for an eternity of suffering.
I wish there were a way to erase him from every iota of my being. Scientists say that every 7 years, all of the cells in our bodies are replaced with new ones. One day, I will be an entirely new person that he will never know or see. This doesn’t stop me from wishing he could. I wish he could see the crooked way I smile because he always complimented it, or the way my eyes change to gold in the light because he said it’s the thing he loved the most about me. And the evil part of me wishes he could see the bad that he did to me. How I lost 40 pounds after he broke it off with me, and the 10 after she came back, because he knows that when I’m depressed I don’t eat. I wish he could feel the cold tile of the bathroom on his cheek like I did when I cried for him to just come back. I want him to taste the tears like I have to as I write this.
But most importantly, I want him to experience this heartbreak that I’m feeling. I want her to look at him one day and say, “I’m sorry, but this is how it has to be,” and then to look at her in disbelief while he tries to hide it, even though he can feel his heart shatter and fall apart. I want him to look at her with tears in his eyes and say, “Please don’t do this. I love you,” only for her to smile sadly and say, “It doesn’t matter anymore.”
So, Davi, if you’re reading this, I hope you hurt. I hope you wake up everyday in agony over a broken heart. I hope that you realize one day what you’ve done, and I hope you feel never ending remorse for it. I hope that late at night you sit down and think to yourself, “I destroyed that girl,” because that’s exactly what you’ve done. I hope for the rest of your life you’re never happy. I hope that you wake up every day in pain and go to sleep in pain and dream of that pain. I hope that you never fulfill your dreams, and that you stay stuck in Louisa for the rest of your life. I hope that many years from now, when you see me again, being happy with someone else and giving them the love I tried to give you, that it makes you sob uncontrollably. I hope you come up to me and beg for my forgiveness. I hope you look at me and say, “I never should have let you go. If I could take it all back now I would. I love you, Nicole.”
And at that moment I will say, “It doesn’t matter.”
I was shocked that I liked it so much, and pissed off. It meant she was more talented than I’d feared. Not only had she stolen my heart, but now she’d stolen the life I would have loved to live had I had the courage…I don’t think this hit me consciously at the time, but I was uncomfortable. No. I was jealous.