Surrounded by warm, new faces, breaking up with my ex was behind me in a matter of days and with these people, I did not feel alone. We got together now and then, we had a group chat on social media called ‘Family’ and I felt like I belonged; I was no longer an outsider. And among these young faces, one glowed the brightest. In her eyes, the fallen angel that would come to break me gave me a glimmer of hope. In her, I thought that I had found my salvation and then time revealed, she was to be my damnation.
The night I had received the letter, the group all got together and supported me. We sat around at a karaoke night. I did not feel like talking, let alone standing up in front of an audience. However, this girl sat next to me and spoke to me the whole night. This hope she had given breathed fresh air into my lungs and with her by my side, we went up and sang ‘Fancy’ by Iggy Azalea. I took over the rap part and then we sang the chorus together. I had met her a few times before that night but it felt so natural to be around her, like I had known her for years. We even got praised for singing the song and she had made me feel so warm inside. The next day, she was there when I set fire to the letter and since then we started to text each other now and then. For the first week we would just hang out. We watched movies, ate out in town and played video-games together. Some nights she would go out drinking and I let her do her own thing, hang out with her own friends and I got some quality time to myself. She did not have a boyfriend so that was already a plus and she could make me smile all day long.
One night in the week, there was a ‘Take Me Out’ night in which girls would stand on stage and men would come up one by one to impress them and the girls had to eliminate themselves, leaving the guy either with or without a date. The prize was a free meal to Nando’s with the date and she had joked to me, that despite being dared to do it, she was only doing it for the free Nando’s. I could see in her eyes that she was about to have a breakdown before it started and I spoke to her for 15 minutes before it started, gave her a hug and the strength to prove to herself that she could survive the night. And with her ex coming out as a contestant, he pulled off his shirt, did parkour around the place over tables and in the audience and told the whole audience with the microphone that they had sex a few months ago, she got through the night in one piece. We joked about it, called the skinny guy a chicken nugget with his shirt off and she lived to fight another day… and I was there for her.
A little while over a week later, she said that I was special and proposed to take things slow. Feeling the same way, I could not have been happier. We promised to never stop talking to each other and never leave each other alone. We would always be there for each other and never hurt each other after everything the both of us had been through. After all, I called her my princess that I was going to rescue and she had come a long way to feel the courage to open up to someone new, she found that courage in me. With the medication, the cigarettes, the junk food and the nights spent drinking, it pained me to see her that way and I had to try my best to help this girl realise that she was beautiful and worth love again. Under the dark depression, she cast a shadow over herself and tried to hide who she was behind a smile but with me, she could be herself and tht is what I loved her for. She could be herself around me and I made her happy, all that I wanted in life was to make people happy.
We confided in one another and revealed are darkest secrets, things that we could not emotionally get over and even though we knew we never would get over them, that was alright because had each other to pick ourselves up again and get back to normal. We spent a week together and then a week apart. She worried about feeling the pressure of long distance for a week, but every step of the way we made it together. And we saw each other again at the end of the weekend, took it to another level and we kissed. And again, it just felt natural. Some nights I slept at her place and the other nights, I made sure that the last thing I saw was a picture of her before I closed my eyes. I truly loved her.
I had known about her past and the many troubles that she had in her mind; sleep and depression combined could often get the best of her and she had a nightmare when she was sleeping next to me. She described it to me and in it she saw that I left her, her best friend stabbed her in the back and other things from her past too. Her best friend and I were there for her the whole day. Like normal, we got her sorted out, we spent time with her and then the three of us carried on with our days. And then a few hours later, when the sun was fading, I got a message saying simply that she was ‘sorry’.
My heart raced at the speed of light and then a message from her friend popped up on my phone. Her friend wanted me to heck up on her as she feared the worst. I was confused and I asked her, is everything okay and if she needed me there? And all she said was to leave her alone, give her some space. However, her friend persisted and arranged a flat mate of the girl to let me into the block of flats that she lived in. I started to get some messages that didn’t make any sense and in he rain, I ran across the campus for her. I got into the block, found her door and banged on it, screaming her name. I feared the worst.
In the past, she had attempted to take her life a few times before and I thought that I could make a difference in her life, give her some self-worth and allow her to see that she has a family and loved ones to live for. But on the other side of that locked door was silence. I collapsed on the steps next to her door and I was crying, I couldn’t control it. I thought that I was too late to save her. Her social media was not active and her room was silent, I felt powerless. And then I heard a scramble at the lock of the door, I looked up and the door opened.
I rushed in and she was stood at the door, paralysed in fear and depression. I just wrapped my arms around her without thinking and we cried into each other’s shoulders. I told her that I was there for her now and that I always would be. She didn’t have to worry anymore, I wouldn’t let anything ever happen to her. And all she could whisper was that she loved me too and I’ll never forget what she said, ‘if you didn’t knock on my door, I never would have stopped.’ I didn’t realise that she was holding a knife and I saw in her bathroom, she had all of her pills out. Her finger and leg was bleeding and I stayed the night at hers. She patched herself up, I held her in my arms and I felt love like I will probably never feel again.
That night she had another nightmare and when I left her flat, she reassured me that she would be alright and I went to my lectures. I barely received a message from her but we went to karaoke again, we took things easy and we had each other. She said to me that day that she was going to try to stop drinking as she had no money in her bank account and she believed she could live without it. Of course I supported her, I wanted this as much as she did and then that night, she bought shots and went back to her flat and held a party and got completely wasted. I didn’t go to he party because I still not recovered from the last night and I didn’t want to see her drink her feelings away. I was feeling stable enough to have my phone nearby and just listen to music and play video-games whilst she was at her party. And the that was when the texts came out that she felt insulted that I didn’t want to spend time at her party and said a few other things.
I had made it clear to her many times in the past that I had a fear of alcohol. I had never been drunk before and people have always tried to hurt me when they drink so not knowing if I could trust what people were going to say at this party, I left her to it and with her friends, I thought she would have a good time anyway. But these texts got to me. I couldn’t tell if she meant any of what she was saying and that night, at 2am, I had a breakdown. I cried for an hour straight alone in my room with the lights out. I threw my phone away and I just cried. I had never in my life felt so much despair and pain in my life. After everything I went through the night before with her, the emotions from that came back and were ten times worse than anything I had felt in my life. I told her I was having a breakdown and all she said was that I was guilt tripping her and tat it was not that bad, just go to sleep.
For the rest of the week, we spoke less but we still saw each other, kissed, slept over. Things weren’t too bad. I had to visit the bench by the river a few times but I loved her and I had something worth fighting for, so all I did at that river was sit and think about her, I didn’t feel like death was an option this time. This love was different, stronger and I had made a promise to her, I could not let that go. We were getting through things one day at a time. She blew off a load of opportunities to see me but as I loved her and I understood the pain she was in and her medication had been increased, I let her rest. And then on the Sunday night, she broke me.
The group was going to gather for the quiz we attended every week and when I got there, she told me she wasn’t going to speak to me and she purposely sat somewhere with no space for me. For the next two hours of my life, I retreated into my mind and I feared the worst. This promise and the love I felt, I knew she was going to break me. I had no idea why she was doing this to me after I had saved her life and we admitted that we loved each other. I did not say a word for those two hours. My chest and stomach felt like it was imploding, tightening into an insignificant, invisible atom and ever since that moment, my heart has never opened up since.
This princess that I had come to live for, that had promised me a fairytale ending, refused to even acknowledge my existence. I left early and sulked in my room, self-pitying myself again in a long line of desperate moments. I had another breakdown and I sat in my dark room. Feeling like an age had passed, in the early hours of the night, she messaged me and asked to see me. I had to see her one last time and so I ran over to her flat. And we spoke for an hour. No raised voices. We kissed when she let me in and that was to be our last kiss. She told me things that scarred me, she broke me down inch by inch and her poison infected my brain. She said that my depression was not serious, that it was not on the same level as hers and yet she had no idea. I gathered that she said all of these things to push me away for good because she was so far under shadow that she believed that she could not be loved. She told me so herself. And despite everything she had said, she wanted me to stay the night and hold her. If someone had said what she said that nigh to you, all you could bring yourself to do was leave. Shut off your phone and walk away. Let her push you away because after that, things could never have been fixed. I believed that I was destined to be alone and that she was the best thing that had ever happened to me and I had to walk away, even after saving her life.
Ever since, I have contemplated the what-ifs… what if we had stayed just friends? What if I had stayed the night? What if all she wanted was someone to hold, whether it was me or not? What if I was never there to save her life? All of that regret has festered inside of me ever since. And with that regret, I cried myself to sleep. The next day, I waited for a message from her. I became that pale reflection of myself and it was evident, my fellow outsider that I sat next to every lecture told me I was different. At 1am that same day, just under 24 hours after she pushed me away, she sent a message asking for me back. For the next three days we messaged again. I remained crushed and not hopeful of this relationship anymore, although I still tried and cared for her. And then two nights after she said she needed me back, she went home from a club with her ex. Whether I believe her or not that they didn’t do anything but sleep when they got back didn’t matter. She had blown off our plans that night see each other to go out and drink. And she spent the night with someone else. When she told me, I threw my phone across my room and left it. I broke down and just listened to it vibrate on the floor.
When I returned to my phone over an hour later, all I could say was that I felt sick and why? I just wanted soe answers. She sent me a whole paragraph telling me that this person she despised so much was someone that she had a complicated situation with and only the two of them understood it. She said our relationship was doomed from the start, was poisonous and that she didn’t want to see me suffer anymore. She said that she was going to cut herself out of my life for good and those were the last words we ever had. I have never said anything to her since. I saw her around a few times but that was it. Whatever she had seen in me before had died in her eyes and I could see it, the shadow of her own self-destruction took over once again and pushed me away for good this time. She had someone else to hold her, to stop her from herself and for another time in my life, I had been replaced.
I haven’t seen the same glow in another person’s eyes since her and no one has paid any genuine attention to me. I miss her cold lips, the smell of cigarettes, her laugh and her smile; everything about her. I have to try and live a life now accepting that I cannot be happy. Everyone sees the depressed label written all over my face and they don’t want to bother. No one looks deeper than surface into what I think about and what I feel. That group of friends was never the same again and I couldn’t face them for a long time until after she left. She had tried to turn some of them against me and they went along with what she said to them just so that she didn’t give them any drama and that is not true friendship. She had planned to quit the year early and start her course again next year. I thought that would be good for her and give her a fresh and fair start. But a few weeks later, she broke most of her friendships with the people at the university and she would never return again.
Despite how she had hurt me, I wanted to keep her in my life, talk to her and keep that promise. But as I have been reminded, I cannot fix people, especially when I am myself troubled. My hope to fix her made no change to her and I believe I made things worse for her. The one person I could not bring myself to hurt and she gave me up. I have had vivid happy dreams of her since where we are together and then I wake up and I am alone again. I have kept those pictures I used to close my eyes to every night and our conversations, I can’t let them go. I can’t let that love for her go, it is a scar deep in my subconscious. I know that if someone did ever love me again, then with the energy and the time I spend trying to make them happy, breaking my neck to be there for them, I will forget my past. But the resounding reality for me is that I am alone. I have no one to love, no one to make an effort for. I lost that. I have never felt so alone, so self-centred and pitiful, I feel hate for myself and my life. I feel jealousy of others. I feel no hope, no motivation and nothing to wake up for. I do not believe in the career path that I have chosen and I feel lost. I feel like I’m on a road with rocks in my pockets that slowly falls into the ocean and I feel like all that is left of me is my head, just above the water, almost submerged and forgotten in the vast, open nothingness.
I act upon day-to-day, hiding this blog from the people I know, show up for work, put a face on. And my mind is pulling all of the strings to keep this puppet entertaining the masses that always go home at the end of the performance and never stay to grace the composer. I am not the guy that I was. Often I retreat into my head, lost in music or deafening silence where my brain is banging against my skull to escape me. I have sat by the river so many times now that I cannot count them anymore. The open water feels welcoming and with no one to love, no one to fight for and to tell my story, I will be forgotten along with all of the pain I inflicted and all of the suffering that people feel knowing that this who I have become. They miss the old me and they want him back. It’s obvious. And I cannot help but disappoint. I am lost. I need a hand to guide me out of the darkness and something to live for. I am living for the dream of a fairytale ending.
Much love from your friend,