Falling out of love is the same as falling in love--both not knowing where you are.
|Your letter, written yesterday, lies on the table amongst the fall of petals a week old. Those sent, I hoped, might say sorry, a hopeless gesture for a man of words. So, I’m off to live without you, spill my guts out somewhere else and not in my backyard.
I wish I could write a letter to make your heart love mine again. But relationships are never solely about love. In fact, I was always timid about your loving me anyway, knowing the eagle does not hunt flies and that trying to change your world would need more than words.
But if by magic, a strange gift, the vision of the love I imagined could be written down, words that could describe what it would look like and feel like, I would have to write: Tuesdays are never going to be the same. Come to think of it, Mondays and Wednesdays are going to be different, too. The nights will come and go, and the sun will sometimes shine, but everything else is going to be changed.
In the end, long relationships smack of conformity acceptance before hastily slithering into a smug middle-aged existence. You always said I was angry and untouchable. That’s what you said: that I had cornered my feelings for you. No, I was trying to tidy up the way it is, knowing it’s a long way back to the starting point.
Pride is the worst and best of all things. Didn’t you know that? Did you think I could change?
Pride is an ancient treasure, a bloody revolution. I could never share the inner reservoir of my life. Even after everything, the cruel bereavements, the hostility, the loneliness, the terrible temper and no matter how often I stumbled and fell, I had to fight even in the most tranquil places or deep inside the most secure safety.
After Dad’s death, when we stood in the church, you held my fingers and watched my chest heave and fall, but I couldn’t fall apart. Outside, the bell in the steeple rang out clearly. You saw me try; saw me fighting back the tears, taking deep breaths, tightening my fists, and you said you’d never leave my side.
These years later, I see evidence of incalculable ruin and suffering everywhere around me. I knew what depression looked like; an endless prowling through the night and the flaming quest to understand flickered and was no more.
‘I don’t feel the same,’ was how you said it, ‘it’s uncomfortable, frightening, and none of it seems to affect you, can’t you see?’
I don’t think you told me what was different, just that it was.
I sit here stuffing my heart into a shoebox, waiting for a taxi to take me to the airport. Ten minutes yet; ten more to smell the empty wardrobe, your perfume lingering. If I had slept at all, it was only fleeting.
You told me you couldn’t go through anymore. You held me the way I should have held you, safe. But it was the last.
I have done no writing in weeks.
First, you fall in love, and then it breaks your heart.