I’ve only ever been in love once.
Sure, I have said the words to a whole bunch of people, but there was only the one young man who ever really stole my heart away.
I was sixteen and stupidly in love. Puppy love, one of my sisters called it. I don’t know, do puppies at some point in their lives swear that there will only be one human being who can make them feel a certain way and then live the remainder of their days trying to understand why? Well if they do, I am sure that was exactly what it was.
The relationship was long and the love psychotic, but I often say that I wouldn’t have had it any other way. I lie though, cause the truth is I have spent the past few months thinking to myself that I wish he knew me now. I wish he could see me now, I wish I knew that I would be better as I grew older. But I didn’t.
At twenty I thought I was everything I would ever be and if he couldn’t accept me for every dark hole I chose to fall into, then he probably wasn’t the one, I said to myself.
So I let go of the only love I ever really knew, certain that there was something better in store for me, there had to be.
As the years went on I began to question my decision, after all I barely ever met anyone I actually liked, and even the few whom I thought for five seconds could be the one never really lived up to the love benchmark, to his benchmark.
So after every failed relation or those times I took in between to find myself I always thought back to the one man who I swore at one point had to be the one I lived the rest of my life with, and no matter how much I denied it, there was always a little voice in my head that went “Maybe someday.”
At nearly twenty-four the thought only seemed to grow stronger, and stronger, until a few days ago while I was on my way home after a long work week and I couldn’t silence the shrill voice in my mind that kept asking me “Will you EVER get over this man, or will you really have to live the rest of your life pining for someone you no longer even know?”
The thought was suffocating, and for the first time I let it truly sink in. I always said that there would be a part of me that would always belong to my first love but this time I was questioning if that part was actually the only part of me that could actually fall in love?
After all, I spent a large chunk of my life with broken words trying to pen down my muse. Would there ever really be another muse?
The cold, harsh reality of the question darted it’s way into my soul and I could feel it crack bit by bit. It wasn’t fair. No one is supposed to spend eight years in love with the same person, with a person who could probably never return the love. And what a majestic, all-encompassing love it was!
I often said to my best friend that I regret that he never cheated on me, or told me something truly terrible, that no matter what he stayed dignified and proper, it just made it so much harder to fall out of love with him.
Until I saw his name pop up on my phone last night.
Until he said the one thing I was always so thankful he never did, not even the time right after we broke up and he said to me “Let us just say mean things to each other and get it out.”
I think that maybe it was one of the biggest reasons that kept his memories untarnished, that kept him so pristine. The thought that even after a four year long tumultuous relationship, he respected me enough to never say that one thing to me that he was the only one I ever really confided in about.
And just like that, I fell out of love with him.
Just like that, I fell out of love with the love of my life.
I could feel it in my bones, that it would NEVER be the same again, and after eight years of trying, I was finally set free.