*NOTES* Okay, so this is something that's been in the works for about two months, and I'm not happy with the flow of it - if that makes sense. I'm sure there's grammatical errors, so please feel free to point those out! I'm writing this sort of as amonologuething that I'm going to (eventually!) turn into some sort of short film type thing. I just really want to get the emotions across clearly. I could go on for ages about the story behind this, but that'd take too long to type out. Oh, and I'm not quite happy with the ending sentence or at least how it gets lead up to it. Thank you!
They say that your first long always lingers. What they forget to mention is what lingers afterwards - while the sting of your first love no longer being yours is still present, it's the simple things you end up remembering subconsciously. The song that was playing when it all began, the place where you could go and escape, the date of the month you would always celebrate. These things may not always be in the forefront of your mind, but every once and a while they'll sneak up right when you're least expecting it and hit you like a wall of bricks. The pain of loss, the pain of having those damn memories engraved, the pain of remembering the simple things - that's what all lingers. Sometimes that pain lingers longer than the love itself. Sometimes you feel more pain than you did love and it makes you question if they were really your first love after all.
The details of what happened in the early morning hours of March 30th were blurry. They were stitched together in an uneven pattern that made it really hard to remember details.
There were vague memories of pushing and yelling, tears from both sides, and a quiet door shutting.
What I remember most is the morning afterwards. My room was littered with evidence of you. Things that I wouldn't normally even realize but on the morning of March 30th, they were like black objects in an all white room. A shirt I would have to give back, my desk chair far away from my desk and with your ass-print on it, the closet door still open from you getting the jacket you had taken off – in silence. And waking up wasn't like how it normally was. Normally, when you wake up your numb to all senses for a few seconds until the world comes to life around you. But on March 30th, my ears were filled with just a dull ringing that almost forced my body to stay still. Nothing came to life, everything was quiet for seconds that lingered onto minutes and maybe even hours. The world stayed quiet. And tears didn’t really come, but the evidence of them were there too in my puffy, bloodshot eyes.
Once I got the courage to get up it felt like everything was moving in slow motion. Movements didn’t exactly hurt as much as they were annoying but then again, everything was annoying. Everything that reminded me of you was going to be thrown out but I couldn’t get the courage to do that either. We didn’t talk for two weeks after you gave me the choice of being friends or leaving everything in the past. I chose being friends, but that’s never how it goes is it?
The weather changed, too. A weird sort of haze on both the sun and the air caused my days to drag and seem muggy. It would be sunny, but the clouds never exactly went away. The noon shadows were there, but they weren't nearly as crisp. You could see the blue of the sky, but it wasn't clear or beautiful. The sunrises and sunsets couldn't be appreciated fully. The air made your skin sticky before the breeze can catch it. One day I had a thought, "You even effect the weather."
And that got me thinking. They say that there's a calm before the storm. But I don't think there was for us. No, for us, since the beginning, there's always been an underlined boom of thunder and there was never any lightening strike to warn when it will boom louder. Our cloud grew bigger with every lie told, every demon that manifested, and every fight. The rain was my tears and the wind was as strong as the level that our words were yelled. Eventually our storm grew into a super cell and we teased the sky with funnel clouds until our tornado spawned. Everything was sucked into it as it moved along the ground. We destroyed all of the comforting homes we could hide in. We killed every ounce of hope, and every ounce of love, we uprooted trees until every single one of them was gone. And then we suffocated. Death by our own storm.
Before March 30th happened, there was a day that was almost close to being as destructive. We hadn't talked for days due to some stupid argument over nothing. You came over and the tension was unbearable. I apologized.
I'm sorry. "Sorry for what?" For being... then I waved my hands in the air, as if they could conger up the words my mouth couldn't. "I'm not always this pessimistic, you know." You seem to be with me. Then you kind of laughed - the kind of laugh that is more just a harsh breath with a smug smile. The one kind of laugh that's actually meant to hurt the person who has to hear it. "Well, shit, guess we're not made for each other then, huh?" I guess not (I really guessed so but I couldn't force myself not to be harsh). "Fine. Bye, then." Then you stood up, grabbed your keys, and made a bee-line for the door. I didn't let myself cry until I heard you pull away. Your tires squeaked against the road as if it was to prove just how set you were on it being "bye". It almost was, but it wasn't. Not that time.
The worst months were the ones where I knew that a year prior, we were together during them. I thought about you on the Fourth of July and how I was on your ass about burning yourself with the fireworks. I thought about you again on my birthday, and I remembered trying - and failing, to make a homemade cake. I remembered our anniversary and I missed you on Thanksgiving when I didn't get to hear you say that you were grateful for me. Christmas passed with ease, because I remembered fighting with you last holiday, but New Years sucked because at least last New Years I had someone to kiss.
No one ever tells you how much it hurts to force yourself to get over someone. It's more than going out with the girls and meeting new people, or deleting their name from your phone, or tossing everything they've ever given you and calling it done. And it doesn't matter how many sappy tear-inducing movies you watch because those are a load of shit and always have happy endings. You don't get any of that because it's fiction and this is non-fiction. And what non-fiction comes down to is spending nights alone when you just want the presence of someone who wants to be with you, with you. It comes down to driving by yourself and not having some ones hand to hold the entire time. All the times when you want to share something with someone, but you can't anymore. It comes down to just strictly being alone, and having to get used to it.
Gradually it did become less and less when I would think about you. There wouldn't be so many triggers for your face to pop up in my mind. The lonely nights that seemed to drag on for eternity, tossing and turning with an endless stream of memories playing in my mind, those nights became restful again when the stream started to become blurry. There were small improvements and milestones that I would check off in my mental “getting over you” book, but those were with pencil and could be erased as easily as wind blowing away dust. I yearned for the days that I could check things off in pen. And they came. Slowly, but they came. Doing little everyday things got easier when every single one of them didn't remind me of you.
Making my bed didn't hold our transparent figures in the sheets. The first of the month had no significance. I forgot where “our spot” was by the lake. You Are My Sunshine turned into just another lullaby. I never did return your shirt, though.
And one day, I read something that finally sealed rather than derailed all of the progress I had made.
"How do you know when it's really over?"
"Maybe when you're more in love with the memories than the person standing in front of you."
Realizing that I had fallen out of love with you felt similar to when I realized I had fallen in love with you. It was a fleeting moment of fear followed closely and more overwhelmingly by joy. It felt like this enormous weight was lifted off of me, a yearlong burden that grew heavier and heavier on my back and just stayed there. But it was gone. Like those two sentences were the last thing I needed to check off the final box in pen.
And it was more than just realizing I had fallen out of love with you, it was also the realization that I could be happy without you and that I was even beginning to be. I realized I didn't have to make up lies for myself, or for you anymore. I didn't have to trudge around thinking that maybe, just maybe, today will be the day you come by and take it all back. I didn't have to put myself through the emotional turmoil and the constant confusion and worrying. I didn't have to deal with all the crap that was you. The all encompassing, you. You, the dark haired, tan skinned, deep eyes, broad shouldered, strong jawed, weird lips, small-gap-in-between-your-teeth, you. And sure, I might miss things like the way your skin felt, the texture of your hair, the shirt you'd always wear and whether you did actually have a crinkle to your eyes when you smile - but that's just that. Those things, the memories, are what I miss. They were what I love and not are what I love. The person I miss was the you that you were and not the you that you are. And I might remember the big things now, but the small things fade.
And just like that, the ghost of you that I held so closely for nearly an entire year, he faded away.