You’re writing this to someone who died in the last year. I just don’t feel the way these words are designed to make me feel. I see a pattern emerging. We all have patterns, until we don’t. You are my pattern. You are the person I romanticize when we don’t talk for awhile. So I reach out, hoping it will be like that first few weeks or months. It’s different every time you wear a different face. Those times where all we do is talk. And you’re so attentive and responsive. If I send a message, you send one back. It’s beautiful and magical and amazing. I feel like I’m flying. The world feels like a hopeful beautiful place. Then something happens. I’m never sure what. It’s more than busy life. There’s a disconnect. And the messages become fewer. The phone calls scattered. I wait around for connection and when it feels good for you, then I finally get a sporadic call at some weird hour asking me to drop my life to be your audience.
And then it just feels like I did something wrong. You say you’re just busy or processing and you’re a private person. I’m confused because you didn’t seem private when you said you loved me. You beg me to open up and share my shadows so you can help, so you can love them but you never let me do the same. And you really don’t seem to have time to see mine either. So why do you ask?
Soon there are just crumbs. I stuff them in my hungry mouth after checking my phone every hour on the hour all night while I should be sleeping. My bed is full of crumbs. I barely chew. I tell myself that I’m neurotic. That I’m obsessed. That I have issues and this isn’t healthy. But I can’t stop.
I tell myself I don’t care. A week passes and I get angry and turn your notifications off. But I see it come in anyway because I see everything. My fingers with a life of their own, find your messages where I hid them. I don’t want to read your words but there they are and I’m going to die of hunger.
A thought begins. I see a pattern. It occurs to me why you never wanted to meet in person. It all makes sense now. Time passes. I end it. Then months. I reach out wondering if I was mistaken or maybe we grew. Maybe you were just scared. That spark was so real. More real than I’d ever experienced. Your arms are open to the possibility. But it happens again. Quicker this time. Sporadic communication. Questions unanswered. I’ve gotten bolder. I expect more. I lay the truth out more blatantly than ever. I don’t recognize myself. And you drop the ball over and over. I say it’s just done. And you finally speak after days of silence. You speak the beautiful words, the pleas and promises of love. Why do you only speak when I leave? Why are you everything I want when I’m walking away?
I give you one more chance, after months again. It’s less a chance and more a curiosity at this point. It’s the scorpion in me; hopeless romantic and staunch investigator. Because I healed again. I grew again. I died last year. And I was born. I watched the pattern repeat. Each message I sent felt like it went into a void unacknowledged. Even if words echoed back, they felt hollow. Or like my body slammed against a wall. I could feel the energy was off. I know people are busy but if someone comes into your life again wanting to connect, you fucking connect. You answer their emails. You set up that call. You do it because fuck. There they are giving you this chance. Nobody has any fucking energy anymore for anything, much less bullshit. You took my attention for granted over and over. But then I say it again. Done, I’m kind, but firm. The energy is off. And you do it again, the words, the beautiful words. As if you have only those birds that fly out of your mouth when you’re in danger. But never in the in between. Where it matters most. Where trust is built.
And the thought comes back. The pattern. Crumbs when I needed presence. A flood when I was walking away. It’s all twisted, like a person who needs someone around to be their audience. You come onstage when it’s good for you. You like me waiting. You never even asked if I wanted a drink. Or how I was doing. You like it on your terms. You like the applause. I get it. But I’m not here to watch you get off while I just sit there hoping you’ll notice me. But you don’t, until I get up to leave. Then it’s the greatest poetry I’ve ever heard.
You should’ve opened with that. You should’ve continued with that. And you should’ve not underestimated my ability to see things for what they are. Because it might take me awhile but once I see, I see everything down to the bone. And it’s funny how this was everything I ever wanted but it soured like expired milk. Because without the earth, the sky would just be a void. Endless and illusory. All words and no substance. I can’t live there anymore.
And really, I’ve fallen in love with myself. It hits different when you’re flying and the the world feels like a beautiful place because I love myself now and I don’t need you.
Someone who deserves better