I’m starting to feel like it’s a little extreme to never talk again just because, oh, I don’t know, we just decided we don’t want to spend the rest of our lives together. We should probably be able to throw in a concert or a hug here or there, without disrupting the rest of our lives. In the meantime, I’ll probably fill in the rest of my life with lots of other people, some better company, many worse. And honestly, we don’t know how long the rest of our lives will be. If it’s a day, I’d actually be pretty okay with spending mine with you.
Are you sad?
Will you be sad together with me?
Just for a day?
Maybe it won’t hurt the same if we share the sadness we share
My overstuffed backpack presses on my shoulders, pushing down my upper body, leading my eyes to the ground. Bits of salad still lingering between my teeth, I dodge to the bathroom, confidently betting myself there’s at least five minutes until the final boarding call. Still, I move with urgency: I am commando, having forgotten to bring fresh underwear to lunchtime spin class. I can feel myself rubbing directly against my pants.
An oversized bicep nearly collides with my face: Looking up, I see a man using his other arm to jokingly smack his beaming girlfriend: she laughs. They glide across the airport.
We smiled like that in this terminal.
Even though we decided not to spend our lives together, we could make it together, right? If we were alone in this world, the final woman and man on earth, we’d enjoy each other, I’m sure of it. If we decided to be, we would be happy together, like the tall couple chooses to be, today, now.
Running, running, feeling free
Running, running, cry, breathe
We’d go to sleep, drunk and bickering, over and over again. I’d wake up first, anxiety fueled by the night prior’s duel, over and over again. I’d seek action, activity, anything to funnel my nervous energy into until he funneled his into open lids. I’d tip toe out of the room, out of the house. I’d dash to the store, sprinting down the street, pausing only to look both ways to cross the street, and scramble to find eggs, or flour, or fruit. I’d quietly whisk, dip, and flip a French Toast breakfast in bed. He’d awake without a care in the world.
I let friends keep me out until 3, now I’m awake, and they’re sleeping. Lying in bed, trying not to stir to rouse them, the world feels most silent, but there are birds pecking at the window. It’s the loneliest time: when you alone are in a state of consciousness, your consciousness a world of one, and all the fellows of your life are together, without you, in a most peaceful state.
This paradigm drives my adult relationships: each morning, someone plays the roused one, and someone plays the slumbering one. There’s nothing lonelier than waking up in a world of one, yet someone must wake up in a world of one.
New me, new tricks
Place: My I-just-got-dumped New York trip
Time: 28 hours past The Separation; The Feast Day Of Saint Patrick