Is it okay for me to talk about it now?
I figure it is. It's been nine months. More than. And I figure it's only fair now. I've given time and space, held back my short-lived anger and the slowly-fading sense of betrayal. I'm over it really. but not.
It's just something you can't ever be over completely. It changes the course of your life, sometimes directly, sometimes indirectly.
I've thought about her more recently, than I ever intended to. I remember all the things about her i miss. And it makes me sad, somehow. You get used to a combination of qualities that you really enjoy, and that particular quirky cocktail covers over the parts you don't like, the parts that sting and kick. I really really miss the girl she was, the one I knew, the person who was infinitely cooler than me, and who made me feel cooler by proximity and association.
It's been nine months. In that nine months, I've flirted with three strangers, and been flirted with once (i think). No dating, no prospects, just expectations. My tastes are tuned to a certain type of girl, not realizing that there's only one of this certain, particular kind. The one I can't have. The one I don't want, really, logically, in my mind, in my will, in my good sense.
But the girl I miss, the ghost of a memory, the cool girl who inspired my best poetry, both written and lived. She stays in the background of thought, no longer demanding attention, no longer bringing me down like she used to. But remaining, like the slightest knawing sense of not enough.
I loved her with every fiber of my being. I would have given anything, given up anything, given into any demand, to be with her. I worshipped her, too much, so much so that she eclipsed all other priorities in my life. She became my life. She was my goal, she was my motivation. She was why i took and kept a job i hated, why I changed my mind about everything, from clothes to couches to music. She convinced me that i had enemies when they were really friends. And I believed every word she said, because no matter what she said, she said it to me, and I was revelling in her favor.
Nine months. A lifetime, almost. That's how it feels. I barely remember what's gone on since then. The shadow of her looms, obscures memory.
She's done with me now. And I am done with her, as I have told her, as I have told many. But yet I'm still thinking about her, talking about her. Because I cannot escape the little things that bind us. The CD's, the movies, the stupid little preferences. Cheez-its, Froot Loops, Adrian Tomine. Say Anything, Weezer, painting. Sunsets, Oregon, Macs. Loving the old school, thrift stores, biking all over that stupid little college town. I remember how she looked when she cried, how awful and beautiful. I remember the first time we met, the first time we talked, the first time we kissed, our first date. She loved coffee, used sugar but never cream or half-and-half. And she hated being made to choose.
She hated being contradicted about what she wanted, second-guessed. I remember having to apologize when I upset her, and how easy it came to me, because I knew that nothing could stop me from reconciling with her. I remember the webpage she made just for me, but it's probably gone. I remember what kind of engagement ring she wanted, when she still wanted one from me.
I remember when I started to take her for granted, when I became self-absorbed, when I stopped asking how she was. And I remember when we were driving home, from Michael's wedding, and she told me the truth, clearly for the first time, and how my heart ached. And how I imagined driving the car off the road. And how I couldn't understand, and how I hoped things would work out. I remember finally listening to someone else's council, following that advice, and reaching a conclusion. I remember angry IM conversations, stilted phone calls, then silence.
I remember hoping for another chance, and learning that there were none. I remember finding out what I was afraid to learn. I remember feeling totally responsible. I remember learning the truth, or at least, as much truth as I will ever get. I remember feeling self-righteous, then foolish, then just sad.
Sunday is Marissa's birthday. Happy Birthday, Riss. Honestly, if you were sitting here next to me, I would lean over and kiss your mouth without asking, and it would taste like coffee and cigarettes. Then I'd say goodbye.
I guess saying goodbye will have to suffice.