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You Ended Our 7 Year Relationship With Silence.

"I think we should break up," she said, quietly.

"What?" I asked.

"I think we should break up."

The second time it was much clearer, more confident. We had just spent the day together, our first time alone in nearly a month, I was filled with the relief of finally coming home to spend an evening with her in my arms. And that's where she told me, while she was curled up in my arms, her head hung low, staring into her lap.

What followed was the "speech," a bit rehearsed, but something that probably couldn't be helped given the occasion. It was over. The words were terribly cliche in hindsight; "It's not you, it's me. I don't love you anymore." I left later that night. That was late October and I haven't seen her since.

We were together for nearly seven years. Only a month prior I had asked her parents, partly at her urging, for permission to marry her.

Now nothing. Not even an email. And only half-hearted, quick responses to the handful of phone calls I couldn't stop myself from making.

And this is what I have been thinking:

What happened? Honestly? How can I lose the person I was closest to? You were my best friend, the one person that I counted on. And you tilted me out of your life like I was nothing. I feel like an abandoned dog that keeps running back to the home where its owner used to live.

I used to wonder how such an animal could stay faithful to people who gave up on it. (And I do know what that feels like, utterly, to have someone give up on you, to quit caring, to shatter your faith.) Now I know why it does that. It's because somewhere, deep down, that animal still has hope that it can come home, that there is still love there. The truth, especially the painful one, takes a long time, and (judging from other lives I've seen) sometimes forever, to sink in. I know why some animals starve rather than eat; it is a question of will, of heart, of strength. And honestly there is no right answer here.

Since that night I have quit my job and left our home. Over the last two months I have been rejected in every facet of my life. I've moved back into my father's garage until our lease ends, and even then I don't know if I'd really want to leave. I showed up sloppy, late, and without materials for my latest contract and got fired. And this was after actually trying. I was so emotionally "out to lunch" I forgot my laptop and bag after forcing myself into the car. Another first; my first, face to face, job loss. No money (save for that which just barely pays the bills). No real job (part-time food delivery). No home. But really I guess it's all a reflection of no you.

For me, I always thought you were first. I'm sure, based on the outcome, my actions didn't show it, but I was always doing everything so I could finally get home to you. I guess I'm still fighting, but it's without spark. I am used up. Tired. And yet there is still a mountain to be moved.

Even if I win I have nothing. If I lose I have nothing. The only constant in my life is myself... (well, that and my booze happy father. And I'm very grateful to at least have him, but not exactly a well of emotional advice.)

The only choice is to die or become someone else. My life truly is at an impasse. It's neat in a way, like stopping to admire the Grand Canyon, or Niagara Falls, this vast thing that can't help but leave me forever changed in it's wake. I guess it still hasn't really hit me yet. Not in full force. Because, somewhere in the back of my mind, I can feel a cliff's edge coming.

I'll have to thank you someday. If I do recover from this (which I now know will not be soon), I will be emotionally impenetrable. I suppose that's a good thing, who knows?

You haven't contacted me. Not even one time. Not even once to see if I was okay. I don't understand that. I honestly don't know how that happens. How do you just stop caring one day?

I'm sorry if I am venting but the truth is you left me at the worst possible time and in such a cruel way. You told me, essentially, that you just didn't love me anymore. Then nothing. It's like saying, "Your best isn't good enough. You, at your core, are not good enough." I have never felt more useless in my life.

I remember you were explaining why your friendship with your best friend (a girl) ended, about a year ago. About how she didn't support you despite the rough time you were having in finding a job and having financial and family problems. You said it was her lack of empathy that killed your friendship. All the while I was helping you, supporting you through that.

Fast forward to a few months ago and I am trying to manage my first job loss (a contract ending without another one to follow it up), along with family trouble (my father has trouble with alcohol), and was a little scared. You on the other hand had just received a promotion at your job, along with a pay raise. Where I expected (or hoped) for comfort, I got a goodbye instead.

The truth is, though I hate to admit it, you treated me like absolute crap. You were emotionally closed off and proffered no attempt at communication. Everything was done on your time, your schedule, to meet your needs. Not once did you sit me down to talk with me. I couldn't even try to "work it out" with you. And the truth is I would have. I still would. I will be loyal and faithful to the end for someone I love. I will follow them through the most dire of circumstances and I will never, ever, give up on them. But that doesn't mean anything without the other person being willing to communicate. I can only guess at your feelings; guilt, shame, indifference, anger, or maybe you haven't even thought about it.

Life makes absolutely no sense. It really doesn't. I honestly believe, at this moment, a house fly's life has at least equal intrinsic value compared to my own.

Again, it is only through action that I will prove myself. And I have learned that I must prove myself. The minute you lose your strength is the minute you lose everything. I felt afraid and wanted comfort, so I tried to hide and recover, to get some energy, some momentum back. What I got was a kick in the ribs. Life, it seems, is a fight to the death. (and rightly so, now that I type this)

I will fight. I have no direction. No hope for anything now or in the future. No plan, nor want of one. I will fight until the day I die (which, for the first time, I hope comes a whole lot sooner).

I will make you a promise however, and one that's not half bad.

I promise I will try to stay open no matter what. I will try to let go of this anger. I will try to keep loving things. I will try to keep feeling. I won't let this fear of the world hold me in. I will step forward. I will throw myself at the world to at least see what comes back. And I will try and do so with kindness and a willingness to listen and nurture.

I wish I could convey to you the emotions I feel when I say, and truly mean, I hope you find all the happiness this life can bring. I also wish you knew just how much I want to walk away and not have another thought about you.

I wish things had worked out differently. I will always wonder what happened? (And please, if you can ever find the words, i would appreciate some explanation)

In the end, I don't believe love exists in the world naturally. It isn't needed. A rock needs love to form no more than a star needs it to shine. But it does exist. It's in each of us. In every conscious being that reflects upon all these countless moments that comprise what we call "life". It is something we can choose to give, to cultivate, and ultimately to share. Or it is something we choose to destroy. We create it simply by caring for another...

I hope I find that strength.

I hope you find "Jon" again someday. As for what exists, typing this, it is little more than a shadow; something faint that disappears with the simple flip of a switch, or a swift breath to a tiny, insubstantial, flame.


***

Just so you know I sent this to her about a week ago, just as it is (save for the beginning). No response (nor did I expect one). To anyone and everyone out there; any thoughts, questions, impressions, advice?
FullofFoolishness FullofFoolishness 26-30, M 3 Responses Dec 26, 2012

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Very tough situation, very beautifully written letter of a final good-bye. Hopefully you can allow yourself to love again. I'm sure your mindset thinks differently at this point, but it is a life worth living you just have to make it for yourself. Good Luck.

I can not offer any advice on this as I am going through the exact same thing. I am so very sorry that you are going through this. No one deserves this. Godspeed on your healing process.

Write down 3 goals that are very close to your heart. Place them in a place where you see them everyday. Whenever you are feeling down or depressed, take a look at these 3 goals that your heart wants and let them fill you with strength and hope.

Thanks. Just getting this "out there" and seeing a stranger respond is a help in itself.