You Taught Me What Love Actually Was, But Also Fear It.

I sat in a coffee shop and our song came on. It’s not one that plays often, it was one of those rare finds you came across.

“I hope that I don’t fall in love with you…” and I was brought back to all of it.

We began to fall carelessly in love with each other knowing very well the repercussions, but we let it take us. We were at it’s whim. Like puppets and love the puppeteer.

There’s something that makes an uncertain future a little less scary when you’re holding someone’s hand you love and walking apprehensively towards the unknown together.

In our time together you taught me what love actually meant.

And it wasn’t just three words mumbled at bedtime. It was so much more.

The little things that made me fall for you so fast and so hard.

Waking up to roses sitting on the kitchen counter. And I asked you how you knew. You pulled me in kissing my forehead because I asked you drunk the night before.

A fancy dinner we sat at and every time the waiter came, it was like he was interrupting moments that were ours. Jealous of anyone that stole time that wasn’t with each other. You paid the whole bill. I didn’t know at the time you used the last of the money you had just to take me somewhere I wanted to go to.

Mornings waking up and you pulling me in. Like whatever was going on outside this world we created didn’t matter. Tangled between sheets and this place we didn’t want to leave.

It amazed me what love could do to someone.

2AM a candle lit the dark kitchen as you asked me to slow dance. And I laughed as you spun me. Bitter when the song ended because I would have spent the rest of my life dancing with you if you let me.

Everything about me and the expectations I had been clichés and over the top, but you met me there.

You met me in moments as we laughed and screamed feeding birds on Sunday by the bay.

You met me in moments of confusions as I needed arms to hold me.

You met me the moments I needed someone like you most.

Watching each other across the club out of the corner of our eye. There was a confidence we had in each other where jealousy wasn’t a factor. And I’m usually a very jealous person.

“She’s the one,” you didn’t know I was in the hallway listening as you talked to your friend. Because I believed it too.

Pillow talk I didn’t know was a game of make-believe as we talked about where we wanted to live, what kind of dog we could get, the names you wanted to name our kids.

“You’re too young and it’s too unrealistic,” people would say. But that’s the thing about love and relationships regardless of how unrealistic something might be, you make it work.

You fight for each other but towards the end, I was fighting alone.

I would have fought for you until I had nothing left in me. I think I did.

But you stop trying when it’s a lost cause.

I fell to my knees on the bathroom floor with dark makeup running down my face. Everything looked blurry and I learned no matter how much you drink you can’t drink enough to forget the person who ruined you.

“It’s over,” no matter how much you prepare yourself for those words, it isn’t something that sets you free.

It’s the final page of a book you refuse to close because you keep hoping the ending will get rewritten.

Waking up alone and reaching over to their side of the bed when things were simple, and I love you actually carried with it weight.

Sleeping only to escape because that’s the only time living doesn’t actually hurt.

Standing in front of someone and hearing the words, “I don’t love you anymore,” and you’re overcome with doubt and uncertainty of how you even got here. Replaying what was real and what wasn’t.

This person in front of you, who knows you to the core of who you are, knows every curve in your body suddenly is a familiar stranger.

You taught me what love was. But you also taught me what it can turn into when love runs out.

I grew to fear love as much as I wanted it. Pining after something I once knew, but also running from it.

Clinging to strangers who touched me the way you did, but they didn’t know me.

Emotional connections with people I knew couldn’t be more.

At least if I was choosing the wrong people, I wouldn’t be surprised at how it ended like I was with us.

The relationships that scare me these days are the ones that hurt. But the one that will heal me. The ones where I suddenly have something to lose.

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