I wake up and silence fills the room. Pillows are damp again, tears and spit staining them. Hair is messy, mind fogged. Instinct and reflex take over as I crawl out of bed and prepare a coffee.
Yawn, cognition takes in oxygen, begins to light the synapses up.
Coffee starts brewing. I remember now.
She’s gone. Left yesterday.
Shit. Waves of pain open the ribcage, straight for the heart.
Coffee is pouring, and I’m staring into the kitchen wall, hands on the rails.
Synapses flair, memories come.
We’re at the park, 11 at night, first date ever and walking after a mostly unfinished meal because of too much talking. Strolling through quiet lanes down dimly lit moonlight paths, having a laugh and teasing one another.
She smiles at me and we sit on the bench at the edge of the hill. Moon lights the small town up, and all we can hear are crickets and our clothes rustling up by each other. She’s quite warm, but makes a dumb joke about her dad which prevents me from kissing her. We get to that later, anyway.
Body is tense, eyes and nose are pinching hot, pressure in the forehead. Chest is tight. Oh dear this isn’t pleasant. Heart wide open for another shredding.
New synapse, another thought.
The beach. She’s in my arms in the afternoon, inflatable couch and in a bikini. Sunny weather, good tan – I’m more a tomato. She’s smiling and laughing at my dumb jokes, I’m just happy to be alive and witnessing it. In the moment, lovely hair, wonderful smile, sunglasses covering her infinite gaze. It’s a wonderful day and mesmerizing beach.
We talk about stupid things that mean nothing to the world but everything to ours. Little jokes, small jabs, flirty gestures that will be explicitly shown later on. Silence ensues and she wraps herself around me. It’s a nice day.
It’s a nice day out, brain fires as I wipe tears from my face.
Coffee finishes, pour into cup. Habits on auto, realizations on overdrive, emotions on panic, heart in tatters.
Sit on my chair, sip coffee, look outside the balcony.
It’s a day ago. I see her car driving towards my place.
Knocks on door and walks in. Cold and quiet with a sunlit room.
She sits on my couch and I sit by her. We talk. It’s the end. Time to close this book.
I clench every muscle in my body. Calmly respond with an OK and are you sure?
We talk for a little, the why’s and what’s. I walk through the house and grab her things, neatly packing them into a bag. She takes them and thanks me.
She’s at the door, turns around and looks right at my soul through the windows of my eyes.
Longing, sad look.
The door closes.
I silently collapse.
The coffee’s pretty good. Salt from tears add flavour.
I sip and come back to this writing piece, and reflect on that day.
Lots of pain in those days, a lot of longing, a lot of thought about giving it up. Plans fallen through, mind in tatters, body in pain, heart shattered. But I’m writing this up now so I guess I made it – coffee got me through? Maybe.
I think back to those days of utter despair, days where I couldn’t wake up or couldn’t fall asleep. Lost muscle, lost weight, lost my will, enraged my creativity. Opened up my heart to art again, rewrote and rethought my life. Took the remains of broken goals and dreams and built something from it.
A moment to look around as I write this. New place. New things. Strong, muscular, fit. Financially stable. Whiff of nice cologne. Expensive watch. Good, fresh job – city life and interesting people. Doing pretty well. Lonely, but well.
I think about those shit days, and contrast them to my greatest days. Days where I had a whirlwind of joy in my arms and looking up at me, smiles and tears and stupid dances alongside awful Jazz music playing off a youtube playlist.
The greatest days taught me what love and happiness are. The worst days taught me what broke those happy days down. They taught me where I was weak and where I needed to be strong. They gave me appreciation for what I had, what I lost, and where I am because of that lesson.
So much learned. Painful scar remains, and I’d do it all over again.
Shitty morning wake ups with tear streaked pillows, and I’d do it all over again.
Brewing coffee noises and smells, broken heart and tension in the head.. and I’d do it all over again.
Sitting on a chair in a silent room, sipping on a coffee tinged with salty tears..
and I’d do it all over again just to have the love I had.
Thanks for reading.