For Emma, Forever Ago

“You own everything that happened to you. 
Tell your stories.
If people wanted you to write warmly about them, 
they should have behaved better.”
– Anne Lamott

You are going to hate this because I am going to explicitly explain myself in all the ways you advised me against. You will also hate it because I will not attempt to make a darling out of it, just the truth I could never articulate when I was with you. You will especially hate it because I am only able to write it since I left you and found him in a very short space of time. I became all the insecurities you had about women in a space of six months condensed to five days. You will probably hate me after hating this. And I feel that will be the fairest reaction.

You wanted reasons because I was intentionally vague, I did not have the answers for you in words just the emotions throbbing my heart. But a good place to start is the bible. Love is explained in ways I could not feel for you. I wanted to love you half as much as you loved me but I could only care for you deeply. Half the time I wanted less and lesser of you but I still cared nonetheless. I wanted more of myself but I felt that person being pushed away and I almost lost my grip on her. I was in love with the idea and possibility of being in love with you. But it was never a reality I could actualise and have a poem writ about. I am sorry I lied, it was beneath me and you deserve better.

You wanted reasons and reasons you will get. I was frisky when we met and that was read as deep interest in your being but it was mere diversion from my former lover. I loved him so much I needed to go numb and forget him as quickly as possible because I would not have been able to save myself third time around. I was frisky because I did not see a future with us, with you. I wanted to get the sexual tension out the way. Like a visit to a new restaurant you do not plan on going back to ever again despite how good the food may be. Or like a walk on a new path you do not intent to use again but you feel like ‘why not’ that one gloomy day. You were like the first step on trying to get over someone else. I was unfair to do that to you but it happened.

You wanted reasons and on July the 5th at 21:50 I wrote down a list of things that was nagging my mind and occupying limited space I needed for somebody else.

  1. I never thought we’d last
  2. I was still in love with him
  3. I wanted something different temporarily
  4. I never thought we’d last
  5. I didn’t love you but I cared for you deeply
  6. I didn’t think you were a serious relationship kind of guy
  7. So I never thought we’d last
  8. I never had both feet in
  9. Everything else seemed more appealing
  10. I hoped I would love you half as much as you loved me
  11. But I never thought or believed we’d last

It is a cruel thing to write and a terrible reiteration of horrid reasons in this scenario. But they say the truth shall set you free so here’s hoping for my conscious’ liberation. Although… you kept asking for reasons so I had to dig deep into myself only to discover these reasons laying bare on the front door to the barrier of the hidden thoughts and emotions I could not trust you with. I had trusted you at one point, or least I thought I did. Looking back now, I realize I needed a friend to help me unload some burdens and rid some baggage while I retire from the title of ‘bag lady’ – Erykah Badu.

Reasons are terrible things to ask a writer of but you walked right into this one and part of me feels you will be pleased I took the time to write this. Listen love, I am sorry I sound like a broken record that keeps skipping to the part of the song that sings ‘I never loved you’. But I feel it in my soul that I have found someone I could actually fall in love with. See when I am with him there is nothing mediocre about the frivolous moments of holding hands like two naughty kindergarteners in the playground during recess. There is nothing pedestrian about him driving me to go buy pizza after a day of doing nothing grand. I feel it in my bones a potential overpowering extra-terrestrial love possible. But with you, everything felt kind of mediocre and kind of settling for chocolate peanuts when you walked in looking for champagne truffles. I am in desperate need to cleanse my tongue and entire being of the lies I forced into the universe every time I uttered the false ‘I love you’s. I think part of me hoped that the more I said it the more I had the possibility to feel it. But perhaps on some level I did love you. But just not in the way I said it. So again, I am sorry I was never all in but lied about it.

June 26th, 01:12, the morning after I ended things with us. I only say morning because technically it was morning but I had not been to bed yet. So as the wonderful paradox of life, technically, it was the night of our break up. Throwing away technicalities, I wrote a poem for you, about you, inspired by you.

Patriarchal Oppressive Values
It scared him more that I was okay with being by myself, with myself, than it did that my love for him was no longer enough.
His closing line was “when you have all that you want, do you really want to have no one to share it with” because apparently myself is not enough?
You just feeling like you need to be single is never a good enough reason.
Not wanting children and a family of your own one day is simply taboo because you absolutely cannot and should not be alone as a woman.
Your sole purpose in life is to get married and start a family so none of this “my alone can be happy too” anymore.
You have to allow yourself to fall in love and fight for a relationship even if it doesn’t make you happy you stay, stick it out and make it work for the rest of your depressive life.
You cannot be alone all your life because you weren’t born alone and you do not die alone…
Sigh.
I am tired of these patriarchal values that do nothing for my personal happiness.

I do not mean to hurt you whatsoever but you asked for reasons. Unfortunately I cannot lie when I write and I will not sugarcoat. But as you know I will explicitly explain myself. “Now understand that I’m an artist, I’m sensitive about my shit” – Erykah Badu. You did not understand my creative process. There is no such thing as constructive criticism when it comes to one’s craft, which you had made minimal effort to gasp and understand holistically. You know how much I enjoy words and as much as my ‘tautology’ and ‘explicitness’ annoyed or irritated you, you had no appropriate baseline to articulate that. I can safely say that was one thing you ignorantly left unquestioned yet preceded to judge without caution. “Now understand that I’m an artist, I’m sensitive about my shit”. I am sensitive and you made my craft feel unsafe in your presence. Oh so it irritated you when I felt the need to elaborate the synapses of my emotions? Give you a chance to figure out what I am saying? But why? These are my stories, thoughts, poems… this is MY craft? At what point do you think I care for your misinterpretation of my expressions?

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