what i am now too smart to mention to you
[I didn’t send this. Obviously. Instead I’m blogging it. Because.]
So you’re 33, as of yesterday. The same age as Jesus when he died, almost a third of the way to 100. We met a bit over four years ago, and I’m still madly in love with your memory. I don’t remember the sound of your voice or exactly how you smelled, just that I loved those things. I do remember the way you look when you laugh, that your eyes sparkle, that you tend to look down and cover your mouth sometimes with your hand.
And I’ll be 31 in nineteen days, and I’ve been back in California for almost two years, and I’ve been thinking a lot about how time plays tricks on us, and how the things that’ll end up being important to us often seem so inconsequential at first. We seldom know the things that will shape us and change us until we are shaped and changed.
But I knew about you. I always knew, from the night we met.
For such an introspective person, I have an amazing capacity for self-deception. I firebombed our relationship because I thought I couldn’t live any longer in love with someone who’d never love me back. But I didn’t realize that there wasn’t anything I could do about that fundamental flaw, that disparity in emotion. You will never love me. I will always love you. And even though the memories have faded and I don’t actually think of you that often anymore, every year around this time, you haunt me. I don’t know how I ever could have believed that you’d stop.
It’s not your fault, of course. And I’m sure that you wish it weren’t so.
I’m certainly not pleased that things between us ended up this way, but looking back now with a few more years’ perspective, I still can’t really say what either of us should have done differently. I don’t know if you have hard feelings, but I don’t. I did for awhile, but there are plenty of people in the world more deserving of my recrimination and regret than you are. So my thoughts of you are overwhelmingly fond, if bittersweet.
And now I know what I’m looking for– someone who lights my heart on fire, but this time, someone who loves me back. In the three years since we stopped seeing each other, I’ve dated several very special people who couldn’t hold a candle to you. I’ve been whole-heartedly single now for over five months (a record for me!) and plan to stay this way for awhile. Until, I guess, I meet someone who makes me feel like you did. Or better! Better could happen!
You’ve been with [redacted] for a long time now. Living together, I gather. Don’t worry, I’m not watching your every move. But I do check in from time to time. I wonder what she has that I don’t. I wonder why you wanted to be with her, but not with me. But then I think “Kate, NO CUDDLING FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE” and I feel better. I don’t know what it was about you that got me so hooked. I wish I knew, and could find it somewhere else.
As always, I hope that you are well.