I don’t want to admit this. I don’t want to admit this. But I will.
At the end of the day, I still think about you. At the end of the night, I still care. I wish I didn’t. I can’t explain why I do. Reason says that you’ve done nothing but hurt me. Gut instinct says what the hell. But I should listen to the former … “reason” being my friends. Since my therapist says my neurotransmitters aren’t the most reliable, the roommates have to do. They’re probably more dependable than my own judgment at this point and they have my best interests in mind. But instinct doesn’t. And neither do you.
So what I don’t understand is why I care so damn much about someone who couldn’t care less. I think about you all the time, worry about you as if we were friends (which we’re not), and actually want to be part of your life. You don’t think about me at all. The irony is that I’ve been doing all these things to distract myself from you, and simultaneously everything I do is because of you. The spending sprees, the serial dating, the constant desire to run away … it’s all because of you. You’re the one I’m running from when I board buses and shuttles and planes. You’re the one motivating my applications for visiting student programs at other universities. You’re the one who is more threat to my sanity than hurt to my heart. When I leave town, I’m really leaving you.
There was a moment when you initially broke my heart that I thought I could fall right over the edge of reason. Every day since, I have taken a step back and I am now a safe distance from it. I intend to stay here, ice my wounds numb, and enjoy the indifference of not feeling anything in the places that count. You taught me to expect disappointment in a way that my father never did. Or maybe you built on lessons already learned.
I’m sorry that I will never tell you how I feel in person, though certainly, I owe you that much. But I can’t even bear to call you out by name. My overwhelming desire for you to understand is overshadowed by my fear that you’ll recognize yourself between these lines and actually demand honesty of me. But the truth is too much and not something either of us really wants, I think. It was what got us in trouble in the first place. And now that I am wary, it is much more than what I can offer.
The reason I never look you in the eye is because it makes it easier for me to lie about how I feel. I’m convinced that eye contact will push me right back on that edge, or at the very least, force the tips of my toes to teeter there precariously, just close enough to death for me to realize how foolish I am to tempt it. It will be a long time before I am willing lock eyes with you again. It will be a long time before I am brave enough to peer over the edge.