I heard that you bought a plane ticket to Southern California a couple of weeks ago—in November to be exact, right? I know how much you love it over there on the West Coast. The beautiful beaches like Laguna and Huntington, the fast-paced lifestyle where no one appears to pause to take a breath, the nonchalant, carefree, edgy-vibe you get from everyone who blissfully walks by you on the street while you’re on your way to a local café along the hypnotic shoreline that you could stare out into indefinitely.
Remember how you fell in love with being in Southern California as soon as you landed in Santa Ana a couple of years ago? It was an “Ok, I’m home now” kind of sensation, and you hadn’t even seen anything yet. You know a place will affect you in some way or another when you feel that way instantly. You’re either in trouble in a good way or in a bad way; there is no in-between. You won’t know that until you find yourself settled there, or until you find yourself hopping on a plane with no intention of going back. I know you’re unsure if you will ever step foot in California again because of how horrible it has been treating you recently. Trust me when I say this, Darling— You may not feel like it now or in a year, but you adore that place and will forever be longing to go back. A place may do severe damage to your old-soul heart, but with time, you will soon forget that the damage was even there.
Darling, I heard that while you were out there you tried to light the match again of a lover who stole your heart, but it turned out to be dull. The flame died out quicker than it did the first time around. You even tried lighting it on a different piece of paper, hoping that the outcome would be different, but it didn’t work. Those around you thought you were foolish for doing such a thing, going back out there, but you went anyways because that was what your heart was telling you to do. Sometimes the choices we make in life don’t make sense to others and that’s okay. Regret is a terrible feeling to carry around, and you would have felt that way if you didn’t go. Life is too short for what ifs, isn’t it Darling? In the end, you were fighting for a love that shouldn’t have had to be fought for. All along you knew you were losing, yet you kept going, though no one was on the other side. I wish you didn’t do that to yourself, Darling. Love shouldn’t have to be fought for. You know that now. But I hope you know that while you were fighting for a love that you wished would last, you were also fighting for yourself. Did you know that? Fighting for what you want, even if it doesn’t work out in the end, is a testimony to your strength. And Darling, you have more strength than you ever thought you had.
Love can be unbelievably tragic, Darling. Most love stories are about people who fall in love with each other and stay together. They are the lucky ones in this life—the blessed ones, because the people they love, love them right back. Of course, things can go wrong and get nasty—come to a screeching halt at any time, but they always find a way to figure it out. No matter what, they always find a way to kiss each other goodnight when the day ends. Then you have the other type of love story—the one where someone falls out of love. Or maybe both people fall out of love with each other which is even more tragic. It can just happen somehow. Suddenly, one person has had enough, and the way that both people have been for a long time is no longer worth the effort. There is no magic, no spark. I don’t think I could ever be in a relationship without that spark, don’t you, Darling? Endlessly sitting at the dinner table just talking about how each other’s day was sounds tedious. There needs to be teasing and playing, sarcasm that is straightforwardly noticed—chemistry that can be felt all the way across the room, love for one another that others can feel, too. If you no longer have that, I think that is when you know the relationship will never be the same. Some people try to stay in the relationship for the hope that their feelings will change or that the other person will put in more effort, but I think doing that is more self-destruction than anything else. Once you feel that way, I don’t think there is ever going back to how it once was. Sometimes people fall out love with each other, and that’s okay.
But what about the other type of love story? The one that is hardly ever talked about? The love story like yours, where you fall in love alone. It’s a story where you are the victim of a one-sided affair. It’s the most disastrous form of love there is–to love someone full heartedly, where in an instant you would leave your entire life behind to be with them, and in the end, they don’t feel the same way. Darling, I know you would have done that for him in a second. Lord, you would have allowed him to drag you all the way to Hell, if it meant you could hold his hand on the way down. If that isn’t love, then I don’t know what is. I have never seen someone love a human being as much as you–with every fiber of your being, every cell. You loved him more than you love yourself, which is more than those around you could ever say.
Darling, there are some people in this world that believe you shouldn’t rely on another person to fill the vacant spaces in your heart, that you shouldn’t rely on someone to make you happy. If you do, then they assume that you’re weak and dependent–that you can’t handle life on your own. I know that you have had people feel that way about you, Darling, and I hope you know that they are wrong. How cruel it is of them to think that way about you. How dare they assume that you did something that led to an already doomed love? How dare they? Little do they know how independent you truly are, Darling. You would have traveled the world unaccompanied at the age of 10 if you had the opportunity to do so. Everything you have done so far in your life has been on your own terms and no one else’s. You have never directed your life in a different route based on someone else, and it’s a shame that they assumed that. Your willingness to love and to try and to care allows you to fully experience life because you are all in–body and soul, mind and heart. It should never be defined as compulsive or weak, it should be defined as selfless and valiant. Never let yourself feel ashamed or powerless over someone else’s judgment of you, Darling. Let them misunderstand you, let them judge you. One day, they will learn that they should have never thought that way about you. One day, they will grasp the fact that they were wrong.
The way I see it, Darling, some of those hollow spaces in your heart, are only for another person to fill. You can fill those spaces with dreams and achievements and spectacular places you have visited throughout your life but it’s not the same. There are many people who don’t agree with that, and that’s okay. You can love life to the point where it feels as if your heart might cave in because of how stunning it is, and you can love yourself the same way, but when life gets tough and it feels like your drowning in 3 feet of water, and you find yourself crying on the kitchen floor alone in the darkness at 2am near the window, you can’t hug yourself to stop yourself from crying. You can’t stop yourself from feeling some of the most intense emotions in love- anger, frustration and confusion. If we could, then some of us wouldn’t look for another person to share our lives with, but love is meant to be shared and shared well.
Darling, I know that there are things that you regret, things you would like to take back—your efforts, your time, your touches, the intimate moments that were exchanged—things you would change if you could hop in a time machine and go back. But in the end, we all must live with the residue of our choices; good or bad once they have taken place, though they may leave an uncomfortable and unsettling feeling behind. Maybe his heart just didn’t have the space for you, maybe you never really had a chance. Maybe you asked for too much in the process and what you were hoping to get–such as answers to the questions you had and just simple hellos and okays, words that confirmed the feelings were reciprocated—became too much for him. You tend to be imperious sometimes and you recognize that, but to you that was just communicating, and it seemed simple. Or maybe it was everything and nothing all at once–sometimes things just end, even when we don’t want them to.
It’s so strange Darling, how fast people’s feelings can change. You can plan for a change with weather and time but not with emotions. They change like the flick of a light switch. Occasionally, they go on and off a dozen times, so rapidly that it leaves you feeling dazed and confused. One minute, it feels as if the person is all in and then the next second, they’re not. The change hits you out of nowhere–literally nowhere. Its like thunderstorms occurring during a soft rainstorm on a dreary, dark cloudy day, a person scaring you when you’re least expecting it, a stubbed toe on the edge of a table that you knew was there. You then must accept the fact that the other person, the person who you are utterly in love with, doesn’t give a shit whether you come or go—and you would stay, if given the chance, and frankly they would rather if you didn’t come at all. And it sucks. Darling, I know it does.
People say that love hurts, but now you know how ambiguous that sounds now. Now you understand why your parents feared the day you became infatuated with someone, now it all makes sense. Love doesn’t hurt, Darling–it kills. It’s like watching every person who has ever left your life, leave all over again. It’s like hearing every goodbye, said at all at once. Sometimes the goodbyes echo in your ear for days on end. You think you are so close to getting what you want; you’re climbing uphill on your hands and knees, getting countless of bruises in the process and reaching as far as you can with all the strength you have left, but then the other person changes their mind, and it’s as if everything is being torn right out underneath you. You feel as if you’re free falling into nothing, and there isn’t a parachute or someone else to catch you. On the way down, you can’t help but question every word said and every moment exchanged. Were they real? Were they fabricated? Why do people have the need to give love and take it away? Eventually you come to the realization that you will just never know and gradually, with time, you become okay with not knowing the answer.
Darling, in life you learn lessons. Millions of them. And sometimes you learn them the hard way, sometimes you learn them too late, and sometimes you learn them along the way. What I have learned recently and relatively quickly in fact, is that this extraordinary life we live is a continuous series of epiphany after epiphany after epiphany—of ‘wow, okay. I didn’t know that, but I do now; now it all makes sense,’ and in a very quick amount of time, you’re a different and wiser person then you were beforehand. Now you know not to reserve a space in your heart for someone who doesn’t want to be there, because soon they will have realized they should have stayed. Now you know to never let your heart be broken by the same person more than once, because you know how much damage it can do to your heart. Now you know not to doubt that your intuitions are wrong, though at times they may seem foolish to others. And now you know to not let the mindless thoughts of others make you believe that the way you love is wrong, that loving too much is wrong because, Darling, I promise you it’s not. The way you love is selfless and it is brave, and the risks you have taken to try and have it are something that many are too often afraid to take. You cannot stop loving that way, ever, because there are only so few people on this earth that do.
One day you won’t be writing about failed loves, Darling. You won’t be writing about a love that was unsuccessful, though you prayed to the stars and moon every day for 9 months in the middle of the night, wishing that it would work out. You won’t be writing about how disastrous it is falling in love alone and being the victim of a one-sided affair. One day, you won’t be writing about any of those things, Darling. One day, you will be writing about how the person you love is the catalyst of high hopes and dreams, and the truth north that is pointing you back home—wherever that may be, and Darling, that person is going to love you more then you love them. And guess what? He will stay.