Lost and found.

The most difficult part of this whole heartbreak process has been the act of letting go of what I once thought I had/would get.  It’s not that I think I won’t find love again.  It’s knowing I won’t have that love with N like I wanted.  Regardless of what happens in the future between us, we had a falling out that resulted in a shift in our relationship.  Things could get better; things could get worse.  Only time will tell.  My hope is that it will mend itself when the two of us are rational and civilized enough to speak respectfully to each other.

Until that day comes, I find myself falling asleep easier with each passing night.  I haven’t had many dreams involving him until last night.  In the dream, he was here in my bed, and we started to kiss.  It felt like we were making up from something major, but there was also a sense of comfort between the two of us where anger wasn’t present at all.  The kissing quickly escalated to holding each other’s bodies until eventually, we started making love.  It felt raw.  Passionate.  Comfortable.  I let myself slip away into a moment where two people were able to forgive one another through the act of sex for any wrongdoings.

I awoke from that dream to find my cats on my bed, not his body.  Noone’s body but my own and two little kitties.  Just a month ago, I woke up with him by my side.  For twelve consecutive nights, we would lay in the same bed together, and I would wake up knowing he would be there right next to me.  I would always rise before he did, just long enough to watch him while he was sleeping.  I felt unbelievably lucky then, to wake up next to somebody I viewed to be so beautiful and perfectly imperfect.  I felt so alive and realized that this is what I had been longing to have for so long: I had finally found my true love, and here he was, next to me, dreaming, as I was next to him, living in those moments as if I were made whole.

The last day N was here, I woke up incredibly early for me.  He wouldn’t wake up for some time, so I just sat up and watched him.  Tears filled my eyes because I knew today was the day he was going back home, and nothing I could say or do would change that.  He had to go home; it was always the plan.  Despite our many talks of him moving here, I knew that he must go and make up his mind in his country.  After all of his experiences here and his time with me, he needed to know for sure if that was a move he was willing to make.

I stepped outside of the bedroom, and went into my guest bathroom and just cried.  I couldn’t stop crying even when I told myself that it was going to be okay.  My heart broke because I knew it would be so long before I would see him again.  I knew that he might not come back despite wanting to.  I knew that this might be the last time I get to see him, hold him, kiss him and love him in person.  There was a part of me that also knew that this could be the last time for either one of us to be together like this despite our hopes and dreams to stay connected forever and always.

The night before, I had left my book bag at the airport which contained a journal I handwrote for him to read upon his departure.  Both he and I were completely devastated when we went back to the airport only to find it was gone.  We looked everywhere we could think of, even stopping people to ask if they may have seen it.  No luck.  I started to cry even more because I worked so hard on that, writing to him for over four months just to lose it all with one careless mistake.

As I slouched over and my shoulders uncontrollably shook, my mentor called.  She and I had been texting throughout my little episode (as she’s quite the early bird most days) and was asking me questions about the book bag.  Turns out, she had lost and found on the phone.  After describing the bag and its contents to the gentleman, he informed us that he indeed found it, and it would be there waiting for me to retrieve it.  I was elated!  The journal was the single-most important thing for N to have from this trip.  It was allowing him to peer into my soul as I poured my heart out to him, page-after-page.

Every night I wrote, I wrote knowing that one day, my words, my handwriting, my voice would reach him.  I didn’t know how he would react, nor did I let that guide me throughout.  I simply wrote what came to mind and hoped, one day, he would appreciate me and what I gave to him even more.  It was a special gift I wanted him to have because, my mother, who passed away when I was nine, gifted me a handwritten journal which explained so much about her and my father’s lives and her own day-to-day experiences.  Because she was dying, it became harder and harder for her to write, so the journal only contains a few entries over the span of a few years.  It is, by far, the most special and memorable item I own of my mother’s.  And that is what inspired the journal for N.  I wanted him to have something that would carry a sense of love and light whenever he read it.

He told me as he was reading it that it was the best gift I had given him.  I was so happy to hear those words, even though it meant that he was no longer here.  Giving up the journal was much harder than I realized.  I always intended on giving it to him, but once I did and he went home with it, I instantly felt lost, like I lost more than just him.  I gave a part of myself to him to read and hopefully cherish for a lifetime to come.  The very next day after he left, I bought a new journal.  I decided that I would write to him all over again, chronicling life after our trip and how my life was going since he’s been gone (now, I sound like Kelly Clarkson… what is up with all these song references?)

In the days to come when he and I had our falling out, I wrote him a 14-page goodbye letter detailing how I felt after our fight, and how I wanted to feel going forward.  I told him how he wasn’t good for me anymore and that I lost myself when I was with him.  Both of those statements were certainly true: I had lost the sense of who I was when with him.  I became so incredibly jealous if he so much as looked at another guy.  I would check my phone throughout the day to see if he had messaged me because he was always on my mind.  I had hoped and vocalized that I wanted a picture of us on his Instagram page from his time here, but it never happened.

This fantasy I created was just that: a fantasy.  I loved somebody who could not love me as I loved him.  Nobody can love me as I love them, that’s a simple fact.  I have learned that now, more than ever.  I tried so hard not to place expectations on him during his trip.  I wanted to show him the best time and not obligate him to a single thing.  But I couldn’t help myself.

Every single morning I would wake up and thank God for bringing N into my life.  It was the most special moment of my entire day seeing him lay down right next to me.  I had never loved somebody so much.  I had never lost control of myself over somebody like this.  I had never mourned somebody leaving as I mourned him.

I never thought I would experience this shell-shock so suddenly.  To know the person you love loves you but cannot give you what you want is quite the kick-in-the-face.  You spend so much time believing you’re worth loving; you’re beautiful and intelligent, too; you have a special connection with someone that no one else will ever be able to mimic.  I convinced myself that not only was he my one and only, but that I should be his one and only.  That’s what makes this so difficult.  He was never going to love me as I loved him, and I know that now.  It is okay that he doesn’t.  He has to do what feels right to him as I have to do what feels right to me.

Am I worth loving?  Absolutely.  Am I beautiful and intelligent?  I’d like to think so.  Can I form a special connection with people that is unrivaled to any other relationship they have?  Of course, I can.  That is what makes me, me.  No one can ever find somebody to replace me in their lives.  I am unlike anybody I know.  I’m no better or worse, I’m simply unique.  I have never once met anyone that reminded me of myself until N.  And I realize that he isn’t, and wasn’t, like me at all.  I placed him in a box and onto a pedestal where he glistened.  I admired him so greatly that I stopped seeing those qualities in me that made me special.  I made him out to be the special one, to be the smart one, the pretty one and the well-liked one.  I convinced myself the only way the two could coexist happily would be if he and I were together.  That we would feed off of each other’s strengths and make each other feel whole.

I see this time we aren’t conversing as a healing period for both of us.  I have to remember who I am, not for him, but for myself.  I want to look into my own soul and remember what makes me who I am.  Now that the honeymoon is over, I don’t wake to the thought of, “What is N doing?  Is he thinking of me?  Is he going to message me?”  I wake and find myself choosing to get myself out of bed and start my day.

What am I going to do, lay there and feel sorry for myself?  My job isn’t done yet.  Who I will become from this is someone I am looking forward to meeting.  I could be anybody or anything.  I owe it to myself to continue riding this out.

Loving N was magical for me.  Losing N wasn’t really losing him at all.  It was forcing myself to wake up and realize that I cannot lose myself over one person, ever.  I have lost so many people in my life, but losing myself is not an option.  My message is clear:  I am meant to inspire others to find their own purpose, their own reason for living, smiling and loving.  I experienced love for the first time this year, and God, I wouldn’t change it for the world.  It was a moment in my history I won’t ever forget and will draw much inspiration from.

I love N.  I’m not in love with him anymore because I know that’s not healthy for either one of us.  I also know that it never was meant to be at this time in our lives for us to have something more than a friendship.  I believe now that without this turning point in our lives, I wouldn’t have learned that so easily.  I would have kept putting hope into “one day, maybe he will love me.”  No, Mathieu.  One day doesn’t exist.  Only today does, right now.  I’ve lived for so long in the past and in the future, that I can mindfuck myself into forgetting the present.

Writing here is helping.  It’s allowing me to process so many things that have happened that will shape me into the man I am to become.  Starting now, I can see that I must live more in the present and stop being overly critical of myself.  That internal voice becomes externalized too often in the form of jokes, bashing, self-hate, and it needs to stop.  I won’t promise perfection, but I can promise progress.  Each day, I will progress into a more positive individual.  My hope is to inspire others to do exactly that.


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