“I feel like you didn’t try. In fact, I feel like I didn’t even have a chance at all,” An awkward silence took over the phone call. No static. No background noises. Just him breathing, and silence. I didn’t plan to have to have this conversation, I actually didn’t think we would ever speak again. I don’t think he did either, but here we were, 3:26 AM, almost two years after the fact, providing more closure to a situation I thought was long gone.
“I can see why you would say that,” I responded. Breaking the eerie silence. “I wish I could say more. I honestly do.”
I think I couldn’t say more because he was right, and I was guilty, and nothing I could say would fix those few months of disappearing acts, the juggling of feelings, or me lacking the womanhood to simply tell him,
“I wasn’t ready. You were, and I wasn’t. And I should have said that, but I was scared.”
“Scared of what? Seriously Yetti, think this through before you respond to me. I gave you keys. Full access to everything.”
“Exactly. After 5 short months of dating, ‘I love you’ was said. Then came keys. And a new purse. And a bracelet. And meeting your siblings. You don’t think that’s scary?”
More silence took over.
“That’s not it.”
“You were scared that being with me meant there was no longer a chance to be with him.”
“I don’t think that’s accurate.”
Oh, it was accurate. Not the complete reason why, but a good chunk of it.
I’m not quite sure if he got what he wanted that night, but after 153 mins of deciding whether or not what we had was real, if it could ever be real, and what happens next, I hung up knowing that would be last time we would speak. Up until that point, I had never been on this end of such conversations. I was the receiver, the dumpee, the one that would need to start all over again with my heart and my tears in my hand. I was usually the fool, the person who begged and pleaded, the girl who often compromised or sometimes waited.
But that day I was the decision maker. The one who held all of the cards. And it sucked. At least I know now that there is no easy side to these type of situations.
I did my very best to not invalidate his feelings. I tried to be kind and understanding. I tried to be all of those things past love interests were not to me, but it didn’t make the message any easier to swallow. The fact is he was great. We were great but our timing was off. I wasn’t ready, I wasn’t there yet. And I now have a better understand of how important it is to be at a certain point where I am able to give the same love I am hoping to receive. It won’t work if there’s no mutual understanding and balance. It’ll be beyond difficult if there isn’t a shared step, and openness. But it’ll be far more devastating if I push myself into a relationship when I am not the person I ought to be yet.
I wanted to not be selfish. I wanted to love myself a little more. To trust myself, and the decisions I made. I wanted to be mentally monogamous. Not just physically, but emotionally committed too. I wanted to be able to accept those keys without anxiety. Be comfortable with the closet space that came along with it. I wanted to be able to freely give just as much, or even more. I wanted my heart to be in it, and not slightly in it with someone else. I wanted to be able to say, “I love you too,” and not feel guilty that it wasn’t a romantic I love you, but more of an I care for you “I love you”. I wanted to not feel like I was incapable of loving.
That’s what I wanted, and honestly, I kind of wanted it to feel like the first time. Minus the anxiety and panic.
We wouldn’t have gotten there though. Because I wasn’t ready.0