Please, Tell Me How

Tell me how to keep the good days. 

Tell me how to sleep better at night, how to stop dreaming of you and her. How to stop following the both of you into the woods, waking up angry, my face smashed and my body tight. 

Tell me how to stop walking through the park at night, whimpering and feeling grief as if you were dead. It feels like you're dead. Where did you go?

Tell me how to stop retracing my steps, how to stop replaying what was said. And what you'll never say. And planning what to say in case you do call. You'll never call. I'd do anything to hear your voice, to hear you say you love me, that you're sorry (and actually mean it.)

Tell me how to stop pretending like there are things you want to say. You'd rather say nothing. Or, I don't know what to say. When it hurts like this all I want is to know that I didn't love a ghost, a liar, a fake. I think I loved a ghost. I loved a liar. I loved a fake. 

Tell me how to stop wanting you anyway.

Tell me how to go to work and talk to new people in a new city and pretend like I wanted this. I didn't want this. I miss my home, my dogs, my goats and office and sky. I miss you.

Tell me how to stop repeating myself. I want to stop telling this story, feeling this way. I want to stop wishing you missed us. Don't you? 

Tell me how to stop walking around this city wishing I was somewhere else, anywhere else. How to stop begging time to speed up. 

Tell me how to hold onto the truth of this. The truth is you created a situation in which you would always win. And I'd always be in a puddle on the ground wanting more, you towering over me disgusted by everything I feel.

Tell me how to actually hear those that love me when they say you set me free. I do not feel set free. Not yet.

Tell me I'm good. Tell me I'm beautiful. Tell me you want me, that you always wanted me, that you didn't know how. That you're the failure, not me. That you were unhappy and couldn't tell me, and you're sorry for blaming that on me.

Tell me that you didn't stop loving me long ago. That you didn't actually assure me every day with your words and your silences and your okayness that yes, you were happy and everything was fine. You told me you were happy, that everything was fine. That our life together was just beginning. Of course, you always said. Fuck your of course.

Tell me that I didn't waste my years with you.

Tell me to stop wishing you never pursued me. To stop wishing the day you asked me to go that party never happened. To stop wishing I just ignored the text and stayed home, ate Chinese food and had some wine, went to bed and started my MFA strong and free. 

Tell me how to live through this pain. How do we live through heartbreak, really? I know how. I see it in how you turned away from me. I see it in how everyone is constantly turning away. Everyone has such heartbreak in their bones. It's no wonder we're all walking around distracted, just trying to be happy and pretend the world isn't fucked. The world is fucked. We fuck each other and then we fuck the world. I want to be better. Tell me how to love someone better. 

Tell me the real shit, people. Not how to be patient, how to trust the process, how to feel it all and be kind to myself. It doesn't really help. I'm doing all that. I have no choice. There's nothing else to do. I have a job and in a few months, I'll have my own place again, and in a few more months, I'll be someone with new eyes. But seriously, tell me how to get through the days that sit on my chest. That seem to say, she was your only shot, and she doesn't want you anymore. Tell me how to stop thinking about how I would have loved her as long as she lived. 

Tell me the dogs are okay. Tell me the land is still beautiful. Tell me that was my house, too. Tell me the sunsets are a thousand different colors every day, and the goats call to you every morning and night for treats. Tell me you didn't bring her into our bed the day I left, the day we sobbed so hard in each other's arms we choked. Tell me my bright blue office is still empty, the photos of us in the bag in the closet untouched because it's too hard. 

Tell me it's hard for you, too. 

Tell me something, anything.

Tell me how I loved someone for so long that was so afraid of words.