SOMEWHERE ALONG THE LINE

I was always watching you, waiting for you to take notice, to understand that you weren’t alone, that you didn’t have to be so strong all the time. You understood that the world was cruel and you have come to accept that with no hope of things of ever changing. I guess I can’t begrudge you your only escape, at least the only one that you see, so I held my own feelings and just watched.

There are times when you look so happy that I would almost believe it, but in the fleeting moment that our eyes meet, I would again see the sadness that seems to have taken hold of your eyes. I wonder why you were always looking so lonely, even when you are laughing so hard, even when you seem so be so carefree, even when you seem to light up the room, you still just seem so broken somehow. You’d be laughing then out of the blue, you’d look far away and I can see the flash of pain settle in your eyes for a while before you try to hide it again.

What have the world done to you that made you think that you should always hide the pain that you feel? How cruel has it been for you that you can’t even seem to let yourself at least be lost in a moment, even for just a minute? How come you always look so strong and broken at the same time? And most of all, how can you not let me try to ease that pain?

“I’m not taking my clothes off no matter how much you stare at me.”

That made me smile even with the pain from the realization of what it means. It wasn’t the first time that you brushed me off. It would probably be not the last one as well. You always say things like that, taunting, as if you were kidding, but with a chilly tone that takes no question of how serious you really are. Distant, that’s what you are.

Even during that one time when you let me touch you, kiss you, made love to you, I never really did feel that I was close enough to be part of who you are. It was a mistake you said, us being together, but it was one mistake I’d willingly make again if you would allow me. But you never did.

I can still remember how you shuddered at first, when my lips touched yours. I can feel the fear vibrate all over your body and saw you close your eyes that were in the verge of tears. But you didn’t push me away so ever so gently, I started kissing your closed eyes, hoping that it would prevent the tears, then your cheeks. I even planted a little kiss on the tip of your nose which made you look at me in disdain. You never did like those cheesy gestures.

I heard you whimper as I nuzzled your neck, slowly making my way down. All those time, you never said a word. All I got was your moans which I wasn’t even sure if it was of pleasure or that of pain. Maybe it was of both, that of the pleasure of being with someone again after a long time and that of the memory of the pain that came to you after moments like this.

That night, you let me touch every inch of you, maybe even part of your thoughts were thinking of me too, but never did you let me touch your heart. When you said that it would never happen again the morning after, I can feel the world crumbling under me. I thought after that, you’d let me in. Instead, you said that we should just be friends.

Friends, that’s just ironic, if I may say so myself. How can we be friends after that? But somehow, we managed to act as if we were. You never said anything about that night, and I never did as well. But unlike you, I can never just bury it as if it was nothing.

“I’m getting married.” I saw you stiffened but the smile on your face never wavered after hearing that. You did avert your eyes trying to hide the things you knew would show there, but I saw them, those flashes of pain and longing and maybe, that of regret. I never thought I’d ever see them in your eyes again, at least not for me. When you did let me catch your eyes again, those were gone. All I can see is that clouded eyes that have learned to hide everything. Brown had never been so cold.

You gave out a chuckle before speaking. “It took you a long time.”

No congratulations ever came from you. And you were right, it did take me a long time. It almost took me a lifetime to see that if there would be one person to break those walls of yours, it will never be me. That was painful to accept but I had too. You never did anything to make me change my mind anyway. I hated you for that, in all honesty. You see, they were right. You can only hate someone that you love, because when loving isn’t enough, it turns to hate, and hate is something that you don’t just feel for anyone. It runs deep.

“Why didn’t you ever allow me to love you?” I asked. Maybe it was for closure, or maybe because I don’t want to continue hating you anymore. I just wanted to understand. Hate comes like a tidal wave you know, like a tsunami ready to destroy everything. But after that, everything settles in and comes the peace. Hate, no matter how strong it is, never really last. When the current dies down, it would settle back to love and acceptance. I want to feel. I may never stop loving you but I hope that with this, the longing will stop too.

“You are getting married because I can’t seem to love you back.” You answered after a while. “You’re just as broken as I am, and I can’t save you from that. You needed saving and at that time, I can’t even save myself from my own misery so the only option was to push you away.”

Again, you were cold but you were right.

“I do hope that you finally found someone who can save you.” You said before standing up and walking away. I did, but why does it feel like even after all this years, I still hoped that the person to save me would be you?

I took out my phone and started dialing before the courage that came from talking to you slip away. I can’t be unfair. When the ring stopped and someone picked up, I had only two words to say:

“I’m sorry…” I started.

You were a fool to push me away. But I guess I am a bigger fool, because still, after all this time, I’m still madly in love with you. Stupid as it may sound, I started thinking that maybe, just maybe, I didn’t need to break those walls. Maybe, all I need to be is to be strong enough to climb over it and be with you, so that you will never have to be alone.

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