Letters To My Ex: No. 1

Standard

Because we never dated, you can never be my ex. By your logic. You were so obsessed with labels and trademarks and logos and words that you forgot to look at me. We were never exes. I did not introduce you to people as my boyfriend.

I was certainly in love for five years, but you were not mine.

The love of my life, perhaps, but never mine.

And I really thought you loved me, too. I’m willing to concede that you cared about me, maybe even more than the rest of the girls you slept with. More than the girl with The Book Thief name, or your best friend, or your first lay.

But the amount of care, the measurement of your emotions….doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter if it could be measured in milliliters, or liters, or even kiloliters. The amount of care you possessed for me was still too small, but I didn’t know it then. I made excuse, after excuse. This thing, that person, that event….you had been through a lot. It wasn’t your fault that you couldn’t realize me. I defended you against all enemies, against every enemy. Especially when they came from our group. Even when they came from my best friend, from my brother, from my mother, from my cousin. From the cop who saw me crying on the side of the road.

Until Saturday. Until Sunday? Until That Day.

“If that ever happens again, you know you can call me.”You said to the cuts on my arm.

“Can I?” I asked. I should have known then. I didn’t believe the words. You were promising to keep me alive, you promising you would help me, I was thinking you might save me, but I didn’t believe a word out of your mouth. You had never saved me before. There was no reason to start now. You were saying pretty words so that you could get the credit without the work. And I knew it, I knew it.

Even that knowledge was not enough to help me fall out of love.

Until Saturday. Until Sunday? Until That Day.

Driving home, dark and wet and dripping and aiming for a bridge or a gun or a knife or sleeping pills and I thought, “I can call him. Just this once, I can call him.”

But I knew you wouldn’t answer. The phone rang, and it rang, and it rang….stretching through the miles between us and the years between us and the distance between us and the…the distance between us.

And when you didn’t answer I wasn’t surprised. I was infuriated, maddened, disheartened.

You sent half a text the next day, and never called me back.

If I had been dead you wouldn’t have known, and I suspect you would have moved past caring after a few days.

And that was it.

I was half dead, and you were busy.

So I saved myself, and then I left you behind.

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