I think maybe you were the first person I could never really have.
So I just silently hoped I could instead.
I silently hoped that every single part of romance in your life would fail just so you would come to me feeling sad about it. So I could comfort you. So I could talk to you. So I could spend time with you. So I could be around you.
Because I’m a bitch. Because I’m passive aggressive. Because I don’t know how to say, “I love you.” Because I felt burned and because I lash out at people who burn me.
I remember feeling stupid feeling this way for a girl. I was 16 years old, young and inexperienced. And all I could imagine was running my fingers through your beautiful hair. It’s always been hair for me. And freckles. And lips. And hands that I just wanted to clutch in mine.
I remember wanting to kiss you so badly but realising that I couldn’t when I could only talk to you over facetime. You lived miles away and all I could do was imagine. I imagined us at parties. We were both so similar, always the life of the party, always the one’s who could get a little too emotional a little too quickly. I imagined kissing you on dares. I imagined our tongues dancing together because of the intoxication seeping out of us from cheap vodka and the need to feel like rebellious teenagers.
I remembered you calling me once, drunk at 2 am, sobbing to me about how much you wanted to see me. I remember never wanting you to hang up the phone, never wanting you to sober up, never wanting morning to come. Because when it was morning time I would have to pretend to not be codependent and completely infatuated with the idea of getting lost in counting each and every freckle on your cheeks.
I remember us sending each other nudes and saying words to each other I had never said to anyone else before. I remember realising I wasn’t as straight as I thought I was. I remember never wanting this part of our ‘friendship’ to end.
I remember kissing someone else and imagining it was you. Wondering if you kissed like this. Wondering if I would have enjoyed it more if it was you.
I remember when you first told me you had a girlfriend. The full year of us flirting and talking and discovering. All down the drain. I was spiked with jealousy straight away. But I didn’t say a word. I was ecstatic for you and I wanted you to know that.
But I was jealous. I was jealous because she got to see the way you looked in that red bra I had seen so many times. I was jealous because she got to run her fingers through your hair like I wanted to. I was jealous because she got to taste you.
And I wanted to know if I could have done it, done you better.
I wanted to know if I would have been able to kiss away the pain and muffle out the confusion. I wanted to know that if I had told you how I felt sooner, if I had lived just a little bit closer, then would everything be different? I wanted to scream at you that I loved you but I couldn’t.
And that darling, was absolutely petrifying.
So I shoved it down.
I shoved away every last piece of loving you and wanting you and needing you until I was absolutely sure I didn’t. I suppressed every piece of missing you until I could believably say that I didn’t care where you were or what you were doing with her. I convinced myself that I hated you and that we were oh so incompatible even as friends. I convinced myself it was blessing that we didn’t talk anymore. Your girlfriend didn’t want us to and I was fine with that. Really.
I pushed you down and stored you away and hid you down so far. So deep. So inside. That I almost forgot the soothing tone of your voice and the way your smile made me instinctively bite my lip. I tried to forget your eyes and the way they lit up. I tried to forget how your laugh was contagious.
I tried to forget how instantly connected I felt to you even over a screen. And how I never wanted that spark to stop shocking my heart.
Because you hurt me. You ruined me. And I was left with scratches and wounds and scars when you left. You came in like a lamb and raged out like a lion and left all of the completely torn and messed up pieces of me behind in your wake.
And try as I might to say I was fine without you, I was anything but.
I tried to swallow you down like alcohol but you burn, burn, burn.