My love,

I don’t know how else to describe that June 13th phone call other than haunting. I can count on one hand how many times I have cried that hard, and even writing this now I can’t help but get choked up. My heart broke that night, and I’ve been working on it ever since.

I wanted you to be my soulmate, I really did. But in my heart I really struggled to see a future with you. It bothered me that you did not go to college, and that you worked at a food truck. These may be shallow things to care about, but they boil down to my values of ambition and higher education, and I didn’t see that you shared in those values.

I wanted it to be you so badly – you made me feel like I was on cloud 10. I became unrecognizable to myself and my friends in all the best ways; I was completely giddy, overflowing with joy, and I fell irrevocably in love with you in a matter of days. But at some point it clicked – you were never going to go the extra mile for me; never going to celebrate my birthday; never going to plan the next trip; and ultimately not going to commit to a future with me.

The highs were high, and the lows were low. We would always joke that we had nothing in common, and we truly did not, which was the source of so many arguments. We came from completely opposite backgrounds and were headed in wildly different directions. Sometimes I felt like you put me on a pedestal and left me there, like I was ideal to have but not ideal to hold.

I recall Mel asking if I wanted your number back in January as we left for the airport, and I laughed as I responded, “Why? I am never going to see him again.” But sure enough you slid into my DMs and so began a conversation that seemed endless. From texting with way too many exclamation points, to daily phone calls, to starting and ending everyday with sentiments of our love for each other – hearing your voice resolved any and every issue, and was always the highlight of my day.

Fast forward to June 13th: When you said “this all happened so fast,” that’s the part of our phone call that is still haunting me. I thought we were on the same page about everything, and when you said that, it made me question the authenticity of our entire relationship. I hung up the phone feeling like once again my charm had worn off, and I was no longer worth the investment or the distance.

Atlanta with you was so magical, and I remember leaving for the airport feeling overfilled with love. If I had known that would be the last time I’d hug you, kiss you, or even see you, I don’t know if I could have ever left your side. I landed in Seattle and we were not the same – your work schedule took over and I went from feeling the closest I ever have to you, to feeling like strangers. I talked to my therapist about you, and within moments was sobbing uncontrollably. I didn’t realize how unhappy I was until I finally processed everything I couldn’t bring myself to talk to you about. I wanted it to be you so badly. I still do. And I know it’s not.

You asked to be friends immediately following the breakup and I agreed because it was the glimmer of hope I needed to move forward. You were the person causing my pain and yet you were the only person I wanted to comfort me. But in the phone calls following the break up, I felt numb. The instant our calls ended, I would burst into tears. I couldn’t say I love you when it was all I could think – how desperately I wanted to be with you. I couldn’t do this to myself. I needed to rip off the band aid and cut you out of my life completely.

When I struggled to maintain the space I asked for, you grew cold – malicious, even. I felt like you actively tried to push me away – and it worked. On July 2nd, I blocked you on all forms of media. It became clear that the guy I loved was no longer there. I have felt in a relatively frozen state since – my heart just seems to stand still. Countless days have come and gone where I wanted to pick up the phone and call you, but I just kept coming back to a notion that has helped me heal:

We all deserve to be with someone who wants to be with us.

If I am being honest, you’re still on my mind constantly. My heart opened for you in a way it never had for anyone before. I spent a good portion of this summer being mad at you – feeling betrayed and hurt – and being mad at myself for letting you in, just to see you leave like everyone else. More than anything, I still struggle with that last conversation – how cruel and cold your words were when I was just seeking to understand what was going through your head. But as my summer draws to a close, my heart feels clear. I love you, always have and always will. At some point this summer I accepted that I can love you from afar, and still go about my life. I can love you and not talk to you. I can love you and not be your girlfriend, or even friend for that matter. I can love you, because you made me believe in fairytales again.

This letter would not be honest nor complete until I addressed something important. I kept secrets from you throughout our relationship. In our final exchanges on July 2nd, I expressed that I thought I was too good for you. I will admit it was a sentiment that had crossed my mind, but I actually spent most of our relationship feeling the opposite way – that you were too good for me. I grew incredibly depressed throughout our relationship, largely because of my own choices.Which brings me to the secrets: I was not faithful to you on multiple occasions, and I have no excuse for these actions. I am truly sorry for being so selfish, and for not owning up to them when it mattered most. I was so scared you would leave me, when the reality was I did not deserve a relationship like ours in the first place.

The thought of seeing you again is both consuming and terrifying. I still love you with all my heart, and I can only hope that time will heal what reason cannot. I remember asking what you would do if we ever broke up, and you said you would be on the next flight out to California to convince me otherwise. I know it was just a sentiment, but a part of me wished that to be true – that one of these summer days you would be here, at my house, waiting for me. All I ever wanted was to spend time with you.

And so ends your final letter from me. I’ll never stop caring for you, love.

Tara

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