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December 17, 2019

The Last Waltz

The smell of cigarette smoke clung to his shirt, making me wish we were outside the dark dance hall together, me taking an occasional drag, us leaned up against the cold brick talking. Or not. 

But instead, I’m here on this dance floor with my hand in the familiar grip of his, lightly holding his shoulder with the other hand, my face dangerously close to his open shirt and his bare neck. He won’t make eye contact with me, keeping his eye on his path where he expertly steers me through the traffic of other waltzers – like he’s driving his car. I make a joke about road rage. He says he doesn’t do that any more. “You don’t even feel it in there in the moment?” I laugh, knowing he’s working hard on all of these things. 

I don’t know why he’s here. I can’t figure it out. It was always my idea to go dancing. It was my circle of friends. I taught him how, but he was definitely eager to learn. I thought maybe another girl was luring him there now that we were no longer together. He told me he was coming, but I wasn’t sure, and I was so scared that I brought three friends with me. Last time I saw him at a party we were both “under the influence.” There were conflicting signs and behaviors, followed by days of texting resulting in aggression, heartbreak, and denial.

It’s been six months.

Why am I still so wrecked?

I’ve processed, poured my emotions and thoughts into the keyboard, sang songs, meditated, did yoga, dated, had wild sex, gone to counseling, raged, filled journals, rode my motorcycle until I was lost and the roads ended…yet still I rack my brain trying to figure out how we couldn’t make that shit work. My forehead hurts from the pounding.

What is that? What is that chemistry? That biological magnet? It’s so fierce that common sense is simply bypassed; disregarded entirely. There were major disconnections. I’ve grown.

I have so much work to do today, but I am emotionally paralyzed. I have to just sit here and let it wash through me so that I can breathe it back out or something; flush it from my brain like a cloud nestled into the valleys, it’s fingers gently caressing the surrounding treetops.

There are times when I’m repelled by him. Vehemently. Frustrated beyond mad belief. Wishing that he had found me worthy enough to fight for. And yes, yes, I know that I am worthy enough. Blahblahblah. I love myself. I’m amazing. I am my own knight in shining armor. I’ve even met an amazing, gentle, beautiful soul in myself, and then in someone else. 

The world stopped during those short 4 minutes. I hoped he felt my sincerity. I was proud of him. I wish he could ever truly know how much I loved him despite his faults…and that he didn’t have to run away whenever he realized that I had seen his unsavory bits. I hug him, but steel myself from sinking in to it. He does the same. 

I watch him dancing, and the next time I look for him, he is gone.

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