In 2014, I desperately needed to stop those tears from falling out of my eyes. There was nothing wrong that I did and there was nothing wrong that he did, either. But I wanted to stop living a lie. I loved him but I wasn’t in love with him. I was just 'not into' the loveliest person on the face of this earth and I had no idea why.
What I did know, though, was that I was emotionally cheating on him every passing day and I knew that this was far worse than physical cheating. Our relationship was dying a slow, painful death and I had no control over it even though I was doing everything in my power to save it.
Cheating is often considered as one of the worst things that can happen in a relationship. Infidelity, whether it’s physical (hooking up) or emotional (having an intense emotional connection with another person that doesn’t involve hooking up), is the ultimate betrayal to many of us. It paints a picture of the love of your life stabbing you, killing you softly, with the squeaky clean familiar knife. It feels like they are watching you die, expressionless. All this might sound a bit dramatic but cheating does suck and relationships of years fade away in no time.
Having said that, I felt this was worse than that. I will shortly tell you why.
He subtly came in as this gypsy with words so fine, wearing a fashionable hat with a zillion thoughts. He used to whisper softly into my ear leaving a tiny curve on my lips like no one else could. He would sweep me off the floor on his whimsical carpet and take me to places, in the town and in his head.
This is the description of the guy I just wasn’t in love with. It killed me and my self-esteem every single moment.
Perhaps, the most painful part was watching him watch me fall out of love with him. My grip wasn’t tight enough when we hugged and our kisses lacked passion. I was withholding affection and I could see how badly he needed it. I could see the world that we co-created crashing from a distance. I felt like I was trying too hard to laugh at his jokes and his ‘Good morning, beautiful’ weren’t magical anymore. Our ‘I love you’s’ started becoming less frequent. I could see he was hurting and that hurt me even more. Sometimes, I would just stare at him and wonder what changed? If I left, it was going to be all over. Someone I could just kiss whenever I felt like, is going to be out of reach, completely, palpably forever. And, I know, he felt horrified about the same, somewhere.
But I kid you not, I tried. I tried to stay. I tried to fall in love with him, again, because they say love conquers all. I questioned my feelings. But how do you learn to be passionate about someone? Why doesn’t it work out sometimes when it is just perfect?
I came to a conclusion that my feelings are too complex for even me to decipher and thinking about them and trying to figure them out was destroying me completely.
“How are you feeling, babe?” - he’d text me at night. I would stare at it and cry. In the moment, all I wanted to do is hug him and tell him I have to leave and never come back again.
The soul-crushing problem with this kind of a feeling is that you have absolutely no one you can put the blame on. I mean, if he was a bad guy who ill treats me, I would just pin the blame on him. Or if the situation we were in wasn’t really good for both of us to stay together, I’d pin it on the situation. But here I was, with nothing to put the blame on, falling out of love at Godspeed.
There is a song called “Want You Back” by Cher Llyod in which she sings, “... remember all the things that you and I did first, and now you’re doing them with her..” — it’s a really fun song but these lines, if you have ever been in a situation like mine, are terrorising to say the least. You eventually think that once it is over, he’s going to see other people and tell them the same things he once, very passionately, told you and you will probably do the same. Because that is how ephemeral life is. Whether you’re 17, 26, or 49, you will meet someone, and lose them to someone else. You’d mean no harm (though it is going to hurt nonetheless) but following your heart is important even though that means bruising someone’s in the process.
Love knows no logic, all it understands is what the heart says.
And so I decided to leave. Even though staying would mean that we wouldn’t have to go through the excruciatingly hurtful process of a breakup and I could stay in a comfort zone which had red hearts stuck all over it; it was even more painful to stay. For me, and for him. I felt like he and I had lost the war that we didn’t even realise we were fighting.
He tried convincing me when I finally told him. But he let me go because a dead relationship is terribly sickening, heartbreaking and intoxicating and trust me, it could easily be no one’s fault. And he understood.
If you are where I have been, remember two things:
Timing. Love is stupid but everlasting love isn’t. If you give enough time to anything for it to heal, it will probably happen to you again. Sometimes, the person might be right but the timing will have “sucky” written all over it.
To be able to love oneself, to embrace oneself and to be kind to oneself is the first step to be able to fall in love.