It’s been an entire year now.
I’ve always liked anniversaries, even the ones that hurt. Some sick part of me enjoys revelling in my own old messes. Another part of me just finds comfort in marking time. Still, to think that I’ve gone a whole trip around the sun without you now isn’t nearly as strange as it is to realize that I almost forgot to remember. I ached every single day in the beginning, and it went on that way for what felt like eternities. But a few months passed and once it all began to heal over, I didn’t hurt so hard. I slowly began to loosen my grip on the ghost of us and started letting go. And ever since then, even months passed in a blur.
Strange, isn’t it? To think that this time a year ago, we’d already seen each other at our best and our worst. Hell, we’d already seen each other for the very last time. It had been a losing battle for weeks already. I spent too much energy on wishing you’d change your mind, believing I could turn things around if I prayed hard enough. It wasn’t until much later that I learned that a person can’t be a rescue raft. I drowned myself trying to keep your head above water, and that was my mistake.
It took some time – about three and a half months – for me to realize that maybe I could be okay again. I wasn’t there yet, but it suddenly seemed possible. There were setbacks, of course. I still cared about your family, I still wanted to be your friend, then you moved on faster than I did, and you decided you had nothing to say to me. That stuff sucks and it always will, but I eventually had to stop it from eating away at me. And maybe that meant tearing down the pedestal I put you on, realizing you were never all that great to me after all, finally believing that it wasn’t ever going to work out for us. Sure, in the glow of summer sunsets we seemed like a good idea, but put us on paper and, my god, were we a mess.
By April, I was finally seeing other people for themselves instead of just as pieces of you. In turn, I started seeing other people. None of it was lasting, but it was important for me to feel other hands, kiss other lips. I let them re-mold me just enough so that the traces of you could become few and far between. I can’t begin to tell you how refreshing it was to breathe in someone else’s air.
Then in June, I decided to uproot my life and I left the last place you ever held me. It’s weird now to realize that our past will always kind of haunt that spot. It’s just a parking space, but to us, it’s a reluctant goodbye kiss in sweatpants and long shadows. I do still remember little things like that, you know. I’m just not certain if I remember them fondly or if it’s always going to stay kind of bittersweet.
I met someone else in the middle of July. I can recall being so thankful that he would get to know me in the summertime, same as you did. I do still think that’s best. If you met him, I think you’d approve. Assuming, that is, that you would still want the best for me. He’s a little messy – the whole situation is – but he gets me. We laughed our way through August, took a bit of a blind leap into September, and now he’s still the one occupying my mind. He’s the reason I nearly forgot what today even was.
That’s been my year without you.
Life has really sped up since you and I came crashing down.