I sleep with a sound machine now. You know, one of those alarm clocks that has pre-programmed sounds of ocean waves and rain forests and storms on it. I like the waves and the thunderstorm settings. When I come into my room, I flick the noise on to avoid the deafening silence, hoping it drowns out my thoughts. My thoughts are colonized by memories of you. Lying down, I look over to see that you’re not next to me. You’ll never be next to me again. If the thunder doesn’t roar from my clock, my train of thought continues. Who might you be lying next to? Do you ever turn your head to the side at night and wish you could see me there beside you? By now, I can taste my tears. The alarm clock is again useful, now as it masks the sound of my sobs. I wonder if you’ll almost-hate me forever. Will you ever think of me fondly again? Were all of our good memories lost in the lie I told?
I guess we never really knew each other. I always wondered aloud what you were “really like” before I met you. You never really painted too vivid of a picture. Knowing you, I am sure that was intentional. You didn’t like the person you were before. At least not right before we met. And I was terrified of staying the same as the person I was before, as well. You told the truth, divulging some information but keeping most to yourself. I lied. And once I started, I didn’t stop for fear that somehow that lie was one of the reasons you loved me. Maybe it was. Maybe it wasn’t. But, for two and a half years I wouldn’t risk hurting you or myself in the name of “truth.” I still remember typing those words to you. My vision was too blurred from tears to see the screen. I thought it was the end then. I was handing you the truth, the real me, the horrific honesty of my being. Knowing how things unfolded in the aftermath, at times I find myself wishing that the lie were still alive. But then I soon begin to wonder how much of our love was a lie, based on half-truths, non-truths, and candy-coated truths. I know I loved you. I know I still do. I know you loved me. But which you did I love? And which me did you love?
One day, I hope we can get to know each other anew. I want to experience the feeling of making you smile and laugh again. I want to exchange knowing glances at each other. And, when life gets rocky, I want to take you by the hand and squeeze three times to let you know that, no matter the situation, I will always choose to weather the storm with you than listen to a recording of it alone.