Writing is my way of processing – pain, trauma, joy, struggle, conflict – whatever it is, I find my way through the tangle and tussle with words. Putting this out there because I’ve been in need of writing about heartbreak recently and what it actually feels like, and for me this is it…
It’s as shit as everyone told you it would be. It’s worthy of ice-cream binges and pillow-smothered ugly cries and hours lost to reverie with your hair still wrapped in a bath towel.
It’s trekking halfway up a mountain, fuelled and equipped and intent on going further, not even considering whether you’re fit for the summit and discovering they’ve turned back to base camp without you. The fucker.
It’s constantly battling your own mind. Daring yourself to remember and see if it still hurts. Memories become a weapon in this war of attrition.
It’s wanting them to text, just so you can reply I really don’t want to talk to you right now. Even though you do, even just to tell them how much you’re hurting, even when you think that’s the last thing you should be doing.
It’s realising that that person does not have a duty of care. They chose to care and nurture that relationship and ask how you were and what you were up to. And now they choose not to. They release you back into the wilds of independence, that churn of solitude with its periods of calm, followed by unexpected ferocity.
It’s loving someone, violently. And realising, perhaps for the first time, what it feels like to be angry at and disappointed in them. To realise they’re fallible and human and imperfect, despite the beliefs you’d held otherwise.
It’s learning the hard way (the only way?) that how much you love someone correlates positively (although it sure as hell feels negative) with how much it sucks when it’s over (i.e alot = alot).
It’s not knowing where to put the accumulation of details and desires and stories and jokes and intimacies that might never again have an audience. Do they have storage lockers for that?
It’s walking past the Greek restaurant where you first vocalised that you liked liked each other and feeling as skewered as the grilled vegetables you consumed.
It’s going to a gig you’d had plans to attend together and being asked how you became a fan of the band and stuttering that a friend recommended them. The friend was him. And it was the music we fell in love to.
It’s needing him back in my life because laughter is the best medicine.
It’s the lull of an evening that beckons a loneliness that creeps up on you like winter. It’s the urge to tell you I still love you, despite everything. It’s the stab of knowing I can’t, or shouldn’t or wouldn’t hear I love you too.
It’s knowing that a future version of yourself exists whose heart is fuller, whose eyes are wider and who stands taller because of this, and that there is no shortcut to acquainting yourself with that person. You’ll meet when it’s time.