I’ll Love You A Little Harder This Time Around


I miss you.

I miss the way your lips taste, soft and earthy and warm, with a lingering hint of that cologne you always wore, the one with the scent so thick it would stay in my nose even after you were gone. I miss the way your hands felt on the small of my back, or the way you’d search my face for answers, those grey-green eyes shining bright in the sun.

I don’t like living my life with regrets; I never have. I always try to see the lesson in the pain, or the answers in change, or believe that what’s happened has happened for a purpose.

But sometimes I wonder if I messed up with you.

If I could have one more chance, I think I’d go back and rewrite our pages. I’d smooth out the crinkles, fold the tattered corners, erase the smudges and retrace over the lines. I’d pick my favorite pen and I’d let the words flow through me:

I love you. Let’s start over.

If I could have one more chance, I’d forgive us for all the ways we failed each other. And I’d stop wondering whether or not we’d make it, but just love you, just fall into you, just give you everything I have.

If I had one more chance, I’d love you a little harder this time around.

I think I was hesitant. I think when I met you, I never knew what we could become, or even if we’d want to. I think I was scared. Or maybe just young. Or maybe you knew too much of my heart already, and so it was easier to put distance between us because I didn’t want to be that known.

Or maybe I’m just lying to myself. Maybe we were imperfect and never meant to be more than what we are right now—apart, so many miles and years between us. And I’m sitting here wondering about a future we’ll never have, a future we don’t have.

But if I’m being honest, I don’t believe that. Not at all.

Because I know that if I could see you again, I’d squeeze you in my arms until you begged me to let you go. I’d jump onto your back and tickle you on that spot between your shoulder blades that always drove you crazy. I’d kiss you on the lips, without asking, without questioning, without wondering how you’ll react.

And maybe then we’d both realize what we’ve been missing all this time.

If I could restart our story, I know I’d love you harder. I’d kiss you more. I’d surrender my heart when things got messy. I’d fight back when you walked out. I’d tell you to stay when you were one foot out the door.

If I had one more chance, I’d give you everything. And I wouldn’t tell you no when you wanted to give me everything right back.

I’d love like this was all the time we had, like our love was all I’d ever known, like I knew, without a doubt, that we were meant to be together.

Because maybe somewhere in my heart I still believe that. I always will.

I swear, if I had one more chance, I wouldn’t let you go. Not again.

I just wonder if you saw me, if we crossed one another’s paths, if some fate or God or circumstance brought us back together again, if you’d do the same.