first of all, you’re a jackass. i could probably muster some stronger language, but that would require me to break some kind of mild sweat, and, to be quite honest, you’re not worth the moisture.
that being said, yes, i’m aware of what yesterday was. it was valentine’s day. it was two years to the date when you decided my life with my dying father was “too real” for you and left me at the bluebird, and i, in turn, walked out of your life forever. granted, i drove over to your apartment, dumped every single artifact of you left in my life — down the the disgusting ashtray i used to have to keep out on the stoop behind the dairy delivery box — at your feet, slapped you across the face and then walked out, but you get the picture. that was the last moment of effort you got from me, and it was totally worth it. i cut all ties. set fire to that bridge and salted the earth. i don’t know how i could have made it any clearer: i was done. you were out. we were over. i burned the bones and didn’t look back.
that was two freaking years ago. normally, you would continue to go unnoticed, but last night just tore it. i don’t know why the hell you called me at 3am bawling about it. well, that’s not true. i know exactly why you did it — the same reason why you ever do any sorry and tired thing you do: your dumb ass was drunk. again. some things never change. how did i ever waste a moment’s time on you? i don’t care that you’re sad. i don’t care that you’re broke. i don’t care about your family. i don’t care that you moved. i don’t care about you big plans to go back to school that will never, ever amount to anything but big talk. i don’t care if you’re still with her. i don’t care if she dumped you. i don’t care who she is.
i. just. don’t. fucking. care.
you clearly don’t realize that i don’t have this anniversary marked on my calendar or my psyche like you do, but now that you mention it, it’s a pretty good day for me. it’s my independence day. the day i ran like hell and got free of you. years and years of your bullshit, and i was finally free of you. two years later, i’m freer than ever. i listen the music we listened to together and completely forget that you ever gave it to me. it’s mine now. i watch tv shows and movies we watched together, and in my memory, i watched them alone or with other people. you were never there. i go out to eat at our favorite places with other people. you never shared a table with me. you are not in my life in any way, and that’s just how i want it.
i’m glad i told you that i’d rather be with him. that i missed him. that you were just filling space. a poor replacement. i’m glad you know that he was my choice, and not you. i know that stung. ate you up inside. was part of what set you off. you couldn’t handle it, but it was true. i meant every word. i hope it made you wish you’d never met me.
i don’t miss your fragile and all-consuming ego. i don’t miss you being a child. i don’t miss you crawling into bed next to me in the morning reeking of sweat and cigarettes, stealing the covers and wrapping yourself around me and burrowing your head into my stomach until i suffocate. or worse yet, elbowing me in the face during your booze-and-jail-time-induced night terrors. i don’t miss your greasy ass occupying an ever-deepening dip in my couch. i don’t miss having to tell you to put down the call of duty and take a freaking shower. i don’t miss driving you to work because you’re late again. i don’t miss you cornering me in the kitchen after last call and crushing me between the counter and your stench of camels and cheap bourbon in a fit of something you were mistaking for love or affection or passion or something. i don’t miss you drinking every beer in the fridge and never replacing it. i don’t miss finding that you’ve gone through my underwear drawer to find the bottle of vicodin i have hidden from you in there and that you’ve taken them all and left nothing to treat my migraine. i don’t miss your limp, vanilla sex or the fact that you cried through it half the time. i don’t miss your drama. i don’t miss your issues. i don’t miss your suicide threats. i don’t miss your lies and your let downs and your cheating. i don’t miss making excuses for you. i don’t miss you at all.
i know you made an effort. well, your version of an effort. for a minute there, it looked like you might actually pull it off and manage to be somebody for me. i knew it was too good to last. you couldn’t do anything that was like work. i know you loved me. i know you still do. i know you are sad about your brother. i’m sad he died, too. i’ve answered the phone for you twice in these past two years — last night, because i left my phone on in case a friend in crisis needed me, and when the accident killed him. i didn’t answer for you, though. i answered for him. i loved your brother. hell, sometimes, i thought he was the one i should have been with. don’t think the two of us didn’t think about it, because we did. we never did anything, but we thought about it. we probably should have, but not everyone is wired to cheat. still, he was the good one. the one i wish was still here. i only agreed to come to his funeral at your begging because of him. i stayed away at your request for me. god, what an asshole you are. as horrible as it makes me, sometimes i wish it had been you in that car. your brother was a good kid who deserved better, and i would truly be rid of you for good. no more phone calls. no chance of running into you in this tiny town. they could call to tell me that you’d died in an accident, and i wouldn’t answer. in fact, make sure they know that. when you finally do buy it bloody or in a flaming wreck, don’t have anyone call me. it doesn’t matter to me.
every time i hear your voice on the phone i immediately feel the weight of you wrapping around me, gripping me tight, and dragging me under. feel my fingers clawing for the surface as it slips away from me, taking the light and the air with it. feel you doing your level best to bring me to the bottom in record time. i have to kick and scratch and scream to get loose of you and stroke to the surface with all my might and due speed, gasp for oxygen and head to shore. and so go ahead and call. give your dime’s worth to my voicemail. i will just delete it without listening to it. i wish i could block you completely, but my phone won’t let me. you’re easy enough to delete, though.
i could tell you that i’d like to punch you right in the face, stab you dead, set you ablaze, but i can’t even be bothered to pity or hate you. that would be throwing good energy after bad. i’ve cried all the tears i’m gonna. you’re just a loser. so, i can tell you to go to hell, beat it, get lost all i want, but the fact of the matter is that we still inhabit the same town. sooner or later, we will run into each other. it will be a surprise that will come when each of us least expects it. it won’t be a welcome one either. it will be awkward. our eyes will meet in a long pause. there will be a moment when i’ll smile, and you’ll reach for me, but i’ll already be walking away in the other direction. no scene. just gone.
i’m already gone. you be, too. get gone and stay gone. that would be the best possible valentine you could ever give me.
and i lied, i do have one scrap of you left in my life: it’s a little memento i keep in my wallet. it goes everywhere with me, and i see it every day. it’s a reminder to never be such an idiot again, and so far, it’s working.