The only regret I have is that I don’t remember when we said goodbye, or how it happened.
I don’t remember the last time I saw your face. I don’t remember if I even told you goodbye that day. Oh I know which day it was, but I can’t remember you from amongst those hundred other faces, faces that seemed more important at that time. I can’t remember if I left first or if you did, I can’t remember if I even spoke to you that day.
I can’t remember any of it. Maybe which is why it felt like you never left.
Even in these long years of your absence, a phone call or a quick conversation seems to bring us right back to where we left off. We still pretend to be a couple of thirteen-year-olds, bantering about life like we’ve got a clue, mocking each other in all the jest that never seems to abandon us and then pausing to realize how nothing else can ever take this spot in our lives. Nothing else can ever take your spot in my life.
Alright I lied, I have another regret. I never told you that I was always a little bit in love with you. Everyone else knows that. Everyone except you. I should have told you. I had so many opportunities.
At fourteen, at sixteen, at twenty and at then again twenty-three. It wasn’t ever a lack of opportunity. So why didn’t I?
The truth is I was afraid. I was afraid that if I ever told you, you would put me into one already labeled drawer and file me away. I didn’t want to go in that drawer. That drawer is already quite full and it wouldn’t be long before you completely lost me in messy paperwork if I ever went in there.
And so we moved on. We moved on to other people, to love and to heartbreak, to grad school and masters, we moved on to new friends and new cities, we moved onward with our lives.
But ever so often I will still hunt you down from your hibernation to the outside world to hear from you. I will still post gibberish on your deserted timeline and send you inboxes scathed with sardonic words. I will still remember your birthday even if Facebook doesn’t show it and I will smoke you out of your little hole to tell you that I am wishing you, and that I remember.
Because I remember.
I remember your voice, a little nasal and most certainly anything but masculine, it was and still is one of my favourite sounds in this world. I remember each joke of yours that wasn’t really funny but cracked me up all the same. I remember your face when you were gleefully happy and I remember how pink and sullen you looked when you were hurt. I remember the bob of your head, it never stops bobbing while I am remembering you. I remember how honest you were, always, and I remember how I could never return any of that.
Little did you ever know.
And maybe you never will. Maybe I will always be that one folder tossed in a (forgotten) corner because you swore to yourself that you would find a drawer where I belonged, but it seemed like too much work. Figuring it all out. I hope I will always remain that folder, in a far-away forgotten corner.
You will always be mine.
To my first love.
And then this happened.
C’est la vie!