“Once you’ve tasted a love that strong you can’t go back and you can’t settle on anything less, and that’s what gets me. It’s like having wine after whiskey.”
It’s rare to find a relationship full of passion. A relationship with love so strong. And when the end of this kind of relationship comes, it can be terrifying. Not only have you just lost the person that means most to you, but there’s also the fear that you may never find a relationship like this one ever again. You’re scared that every relationship to follow will just be a let down. You tell yourself that you won’t compare your future relationships to this one, but you know you will. Every time you think you start to feel something for someone, you’ll compare it to the way you felt about him, and it won’t be enough. Every action, every thought, every feeling, will be compared, and they’ll never be strong enough, they’ll never be deep enough. You can’t go back to before you had this feeling. You can’t forget what you have felt. You can’t forget the moments that you shared and the memories that you made. You can’t pretend that they never existed. You can’t pretend that you were never in love with them. You’re scared that every relationship to follow will be like having wine after whiskey. Something faint and feeble after something so strong and overpowering. Overpowering – that’s how much you loved him. The love you felt for him was unlike anything else, and incomparable to anyone else. The wine is never strong enough, and you can never truly get the taste of whiskey out of your mouth, just like you can never get the thought of him out of your mind. You’re scared he will always be there. You’re scared you will never love anyone that passionately ever again. You’re scared that every man after him will be like having wine, after whiskey.
Sometimes, there is good in goodbye. We are always told that everything happens for a reason. We are told that if people are meant to be together, that they will find a way. I don’t believe in fate. I don’t believe in destiny. I believe in timing. Sometimes the time is right, and sometimes it’s not. We hold onto people that we should be letting go, because we are scared of saying goodbye. We are scared that if we say goodbye we may never say hello again. But maybe sometimes, that’s what is for the best. Maybe sometimes we bring ourselves pain by holding on instead of letting go. The person we’re holding onto has already said goodbye, but we refuse to acknowledge it. We refuse to acknowledge that saying goodbye to this person is a good thing, we are so scared of what will happen after. We’re scared of the aftermath of goodbye. But we shouldn’t be. We shouldn’t want to be in someone’s life if they don’t want us there. Sometimes goodbyes are forced. Sometimes neither of you wants to say goodbye, but you don’t have a choice. That’s what happened to us. We were at the best part of our relationship and we had to say goodbye. We didn’t have a choice. Saying goodbye to you felt like someone was ripping my heart out. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t speak. I still remember that moment like it was yesterday. Hugging you for the last time. Kissing your lips for once last time, and turning around and walking away. It took all of my strength to not buckle down to my knees and sob right in front of you. Walking away from you… one of the hardest thing I’ve ever done. And even though I physically did it, I never emotionally did. I may have walked away from you but in my heart I was still next to you with my arms around your neck, praying that you would never leave me. But you walked away. And you took your heart, and mine, with you. You said goodbye, when all I wanted to say was goodnight. See you tomorrow, and forever after that. You said goodbye and you moved on, and I was stuck in the middle of hello and goodbye, by myself, hoping that you would walk back into my life. But you never did, at least never fully. You stood with one foot in the door, but you moved on. You let me hold onto you, while you let me go. There has to be some good in goodbye. There has to be a reason for letting you go. It can’t all be for nothing. All that pain I felt can’t be a waste. And it’s not. Finally saying goodbye made me stronger. It made me realise that we shouldn’t hold onto things that want to be let go. It showed me that I didn’t need you. It made me braver for the future. Does it still hurt? Yes. Can I still feel the pain of the goodbye when I think about it? Of course. Will that ever go away? Maybe. Timing is everything, and it wasn’t our time. It wasn’t our time to be in love. It wasn’t our time to be happy together. It wasn’t my time to hold on. And it was your time to move on. It was your time to leave. The problem with goodbyes is that we, as humans, will always wonder what if. We always think about what could have happened. But the truth is that we will never know. We can never go back to that moment in time and find out. So we have to embrace it and move on. Goodbyes hurt. They bring pain and tears. But being stuck in that moment of goodbye doesn’t ease the pain, it doesn’t soften the blow. So say goodbye, and let it go. Let go of him, let go of the pain, let go of it all. I don’t believe in fate. I don’t believe in destiny. But for now, I believe that there is good in goodbye.
It’s beautiful isn’t it, writing? The way we can put words on a page and express ourselves. I’ve loved writing ever since I was young, ever since I realised that I could express myself better on paper than I ever could out loud. I was the little girl who would write apology letters, because my spoken words were never enough. We read books, and articles, and we never really take a step back to appreciate the words that have been written before us. We don’t appreciate the fact that an author whom we have never met has just taken five hours of our time with his beautifully written words and his enchanting story. I’ve always loved it. Being able to use words to express myself. Being able to write down everything I’m feeling, portray every way I’m hurting. Writing has become my solution, to all the pain and the heartache. It’s a way to let it out, a way to throw out all the negativity. When he broke my heart, I immediately thought the only thing I could do was sit in my bed and cry. I would talk to my friends, and I would look at his photographs, and I would cry. I can’t tell you whether this was helpful or not, because I haven’t figured it out yet myself. But I can tell you, that writing saved me. Something happens when you have to put the words down on paper. Somehow, it makes you think more clearly. You put thought into the words you’re using, and in turn you put thought into why you are using those words. I realised more about how I felt about him when I put pen to paper. I realised how much more he hurt me when I wrote it down. And I figured out how much better off I was without him, when instead of crying about it into my pillow, I wrote. One might say that it didn’t help me. One might say that here I am nearly six months later writing about him and that I clearly haven’t moved on. But I haven’t cried about him in months. I haven’t crawled into a ball and cried into my pillow wondering where he was or what he was doing. Instead, I sat down and I wrote. And when I was done writing, I had said all that I needed to say, and there was nothing left to think about, so I could move on with my day, with my life. Time heals all wounds; I strongly believe that. But who says you can’t have some help along the way. Writing is beautiful. Use it.
Thank you. Thank you for teaching me the difference between right and wrong. Thank you for showing me what it feels like to be tossed aside. Thank you for teaching me cruelty. Thank you for teaching me heartbreak. Thank you for yelling at me. Thank you for your mean words. Thank you for forcing me to become strong. Thank you for showing me what I don’t deserve. Thank you for all those nights you made me cry. Thank you for for all the mistakes I made. Thank you for the lessons I learned from them. Thank you for showing me that forgiveness isn’t always the solution. Thank you for making fun of how much I cared. Thank you for not respecting me. Thank you for never appreciating anything I did. Thanks to you I now know when I should walk out of a relationship. Thanks to you I know what it’s like to feel betrayed.
Thank you for showing me what I don’t want. Thank you for showing me what it means to be selfish. Thank you for helping me decide to be less selfless. Thank you for not caring. Thank you for leaving me behind. Thank you for letting me have a fresh start. Thank you for not being a part of it. Thank you for all the terrible things you’ve said. Thank you for all the times I felt degraded and used. Thank you for making me feel what it’s like to hit rock bottom. Thank you for making me re-build. Thank you for all the destruction and the hurt. Thank you for making me the woman that I am today. Thanks to you I’m stronger. Thanks to you I’m wiser. And thanks to you, I’ll never fall for you again.
I was sitting in bed today, and I realised that I’m not in love with you, I’m in love with the idea of you. I’ve been creating fantasies in my brain of the man that you could become. This idea of a man who will sweep me off my feet. This man who will be genuine and trustworthy, and love me as much as I love him. The man that will show up at my doorstep and say that he made a mistake and that he wants me back. The man that will realise that I’m the one for him. You have a new girlfriend now, and seeing pictures of the two of you has made me create a different you in my head. I’ve created an image of you that I always wished you could be. The kind, and loving boyfriend. The loyal one. The one who changed. The one who finally gave up his days of being a player and learned to love. But the fact of the matter is, I don’t know what your relationship now is like. I know that you’re serious about her, and I know that you care. But you haven’t changed, not as much as you think you have, otherwise you wouldn’t have called me 3 weeks ago to tell me how much you missed having sex with me. That showed me that you’re not a changed man. You’re not the man that I’ve created in my head. Maybe you’re better to her, maybe you care about her more, in fact on those counts I’m absolute sure that you do. But you’re still not the man I created in my head, you’re not the one who has caused the sleepless nights and the restless mornings, because that guy doesn’t exist. He’s what I wish you could be, he’s what I think you are to her, he’s what I always wanted. But he’s not you. And you’re not him. I loved you for a long time, I really did. I was so in love with you that I couldn’t even see how much you were destroying me and tearing me down. And for the past six months, ever since we said goodbye, I thought I still loved you. I kept thinking to myself “look how much he’s changed, he’s the man I always wanted.” But you’re not. For the past six months, I haven’t been in love with you. I’ve been in love with the idea of you, the idea of who you could become, and today I’m letting that idea go, and I’m letting you go along with it.
First of all, I want you to know that I don’t hate you. I’m sure you’re a great person- in fact I hope that you are. I’ve seen the way he cares about you, the way you’ve changed him. I’ve heard him talk about how happy he is with you. So I hope you take care of him…
I hope you stay in and watch movies with him, he loves that. I hope you buy him popcorn, he doesn’t like baked goods. I hope you kiss him on the cheek when he’s drunk; don’t get mad at him when he drinks too much and blacks out. I hope you laugh at his jokes, even when they’re not funny. I hope you wish him luck on his exams, and tell him he’ll do great. I hope you don’t get annoyed when he wakes up in the morning and starts blasting music and dancing around. I hope you smile at him and tell him he’s cute instead. Get out of bed and dance with him. You’ll regret it months later if you don’t. Don’t be self conscious around him. Accept his compliments when he gives them. When he says something, he means it. Go to the beach with him when he asks. When he puts his arms around you, pull him in close, because it will never be close enough. I hope you tell him you miss him. Tell him when you think of something funny. Tell him when something makes you think of him. I hope you don’t take his jokes personally, he doesn’t mean them that way. I hope you don’t try to make him jealous. I hope you realise he’s changed so much for you, I hope you appreciate that. I hope you challenge him but don’t get in stupid fights over things you read on the internet. I hope you don’t get mad at him because you see him talking to another girls. Don’t be offended if he wants to spend a night with the guys, he’ll always come back to you in the end. I hope you don’t take those short moments when he opens up to you for granted. Tell him how you feel. I hope you tell him you love him, because he deserves to be loved. I hope you fight for him.
I hope that he can love you the way he was never really able to love me. I hope that he treats you well. And if he doesn’t, I hope you have the strength and the bravery to leave him and truly let him go – perhaps a little more successfully than I did.
You were always there, but I never noticed. You told me you loved me, but I didn’t care. You watched me fall for guy after guy; guys that weren’t you. But you loved me all the same. You watched me get hurt, knowing that you never would’ve treated me like they do. You were the good guy, the nice one. The one I kept as a friend. I kissed you when I was drunk, and pushed you away when I was sober. I hurt you, and for that I’m sorry. I changed you, and I wish I hadn’t. While I was getting my heart broken, I never realised I was breaking yours. While I was chasing after the bad boy, I never realised that you were chasing me. I took you for granted, and that wasn’t fair. You were the boy I should have wanted. The boy that would have kept me safe. You were the one who would have made me happy, the one who wouldn’t have cheated, the one who wouldn’t have broken my heart – but I never gave you a chance to prove it. You said all the right things at exactly the right time. You were the shoulder I could always cry on. You were the one I always missed. You cared about me so much, and the thing is, I cared about you too. But I was too busy. Too busy with the guys that would break my heart. Too busy playing the game. Too busy trying to change the guys I was with. Too busy trying to change them into you. Now I’m standing here, hoping you will give me another chance. Hoping that deep inside, you are still that boy. The one who loved me, the one that cared. Now I’m standing here, hoping you’ll let me prove to you, that I can love you, and that I can care too.
Tonight I find myself thinking about thinking about you. I find myself wondering when I will stop thinking about you. I wonder when the day will come that I will wake up and have you not be one of the first things that enter my mind. I’m thinking about why I’m thinking about you when you are with her and not thinking about me. I find myself wishing that I would stop thinking. Wish that there was an off switch. An off switch for you, and my thoughts about you. Tonight, I don’t find myself mourning, I don’t even find myself missing you. I just find myself thinking. Thinking about thinking about you. Wishing it could stop. Wishing I could stop thinking about you. Wishing that I could make you leave my mind for good. Wondering whether you ever think about me. Wondering whether there are moments of weakness when I enter your thoughts. I find myself wishing you weren’t with her. Not because I think we could be together, but because I want you to be thinking about me. The way I think about you. It dawns on me that you probably don’t. You have someone new to think about now. Someone who thinks about you too, but she doesn’t think about you the way I do. She couldn’t. She might love you, but she will never love you the way I did, or do. I find myself wondering whether you love her. Whether she’s the love of your life. I wonder if you’re mine. And if so, how do I ever stop thinking? Can one stop thinking about the love of their life? I find myself hoping that you’re not the love of my life. I want to let you go. I wish I already had. I sit here tonight and let all these thoughts consume me. I find myself thinking about thinking about you, while you’re thousands of miles away, thinking about someone else.
We talked again yesterday. Like actually talked, on the phone. It was the first time I had heard your voice since we ended things in December. Hearing your voice made me shake. I had to take deep breaths just to talk to you without my voice shaking, but I don’t think you noticed. We joked around like old times, filled each other in on our lives. You told me about her. You told me that you were happy, and told me how this was the most serious relationship you had ever been in. We talked about a bunch of stuff. It was good to hear your voice, but hard at the same time. I told you that I didn’t have feelings for you. Point blank. I don’t even really remember your reaction. But it felt great saying it out loud. Fake it till you make it, right? So that’s what I’m going to do. I told my mum later in the evening that I had talked to you, and that you were well, and that I was happy for you, and that I was over you. She asked me if that was true, or if I was faking it, and I told her it was true. And that is what I will tell everyone, until one day, it is.
Tonight when we talked, I told you about my life here. I told you about school, and about work. I told you about my travels, and the people that I had met along the way. I told you I was happy. I told you that I was happier than before. And that was true. You told me about her. You told me you were happy. So I lied and told you I was dating casually, and that I was having lots of fun.
But I didn’t tell you everything. I didn’t tell you that I missed you. I didn’t tell you that sometimes I wake up in the morning and long for your touch. I didn’t tell you that seeing your pictures with her still break my heart. I didn’t tell you that just texting you at that very moment made me nauseous. I didn’t tell you that I had to take three deep breaths just to respond to your text. I didn’t tell you how good it felt to talk to you again. I didn’t tell you that I wish you were with me instead of her. I didn’t tell you that I secretly wish you would break up and want me again. I didn’t tell you that I got drunk two nights ago and sobbed on my roommates lap because of you. I didn’t tell you that I’m still not over you. I didn’t tell you that I’m not as strong as I seem. I didn’t tell you that I miss my best friend. I didn’t tell you anything I wanted to. These are all the things I wanted you to know. The things I wish I could say to you. These are the words I didn’t say.