It’s been almost a year. Almost a year since I screwed things up and caused us not to talk anymore. A year since I started trying to find the right combination of therapy and meds to try to make me human.
It’s hard, R. It’s so hard. You’re the one thing I can’t talk about, and I need to. I need to talk about you so badly. I can’t go another year with you living inside of me. I need space in my heart for people who aren’t you. You can’t keep haunting me.
I don’t want another year of remembering. I don’t want to go to a pumpkin patch and feel that blinding pain in my chest because I remember another pumpkin patch that only exists nearly a decade in the past, and in my mind. Where pumpkins are never lonely, and neither am I.
Then the snow comes, and it brings the memories of walking down a sidewalk in that mountain city, glowing softly as the lamps illuminated the dancing snowflakes falling on the world around us.
A similar scene in a different city in the mountains, the stars and snow making the air crisp and almost biting, but our hands clasped making me so warm and happy. Always happy. I remember my heart being so full and feeling like I was finally home after living in the emotional equivalent of a motel, out of an overnight bag, for so long. Wanting more than anything to believe that it would last, that it honestly was forever, or longer, and that I’d be allowed to stay.
I screwed up so much. I always have, and I’m sorry. I’ve been afraid and lonely my whole life and you were the only thing that felt like safety and forever. I tried my best but I didn’t understand what was wrong with me. I just knew I couldn’t lose you, but deep down, I always knew I would. And I thought that if I pushed you away, if I made you leave, if that last straw snapped in half, then it wasn’t me losing you, it was me forcing you away to protect myself. It would be my choice, my decision, my control.
In my naive little heart, I never thought you’d really go. I thought I could push you and push you and that no matter what, you’d always come back. I should have known better; you were always the one who could walk away, who could get in the car and drive away without any doubt or regret, and I was the one left sitting on the porch, wrapped in my blanket and sobbing, trying to keep the monsters away just in case you decided to come back.
Only you didn’t come back. And maybe that was for the best, because as it turns out, I was actually the monster all along.
I remember the way your jacket smelled, like your deodorant and soap and safety. Like you. I remember flannel season, and Kingdom Hearts. I remember planting flowers in the backyard and dancing twice on Thursdays. I remember the snowstorm on the ocean, and how the stars looked from your roof, the butt shake off happiness.
I wish I could’ve been the person I am now, back then. I wish I didn’t burn everything I touched. I wish there was more left than just an isolated ember amidst a pile of ashes, struggling to glow through the remnants of a past she doesn’t really want to forget. More than anything, I wish I still had you.