When You Have One Week Left With The Person You Love


We’ve only been together, for real, for three months—a little less, actually. The three months before that were far from perfect, but they were fun. Really fun. Way more fun than I anticipated those three months could be. Turns out, “they” were right—I wasn’t expecting it, but a good thing came. A really good thing. Probably the best thing that’s ever happened to me.

We’ve only been together, for real, for three months—and to be clear, at school, he was a fuckboy. He was damaged and unavailable and a pain in the ass. He fucked up. Several times. And I was too smitten to hold him accountable for all his shit—I fucked up, too. But I was hooked on him. I’m still hooked on him. Because fuckgirl recognize fuckboy, I guess. He’s selfish and reckless, but so am I—and that’s OK. At least we can admit it. At least my happiness is his happiness. At least his sadness is my sadness. At least we’re really in love. At least we’re fuckids together, you know? It works for us. It’s kind of our thing.

We’ve only been together, for real, for three months—but if we’ve been together in some capacity for six—well, shit, that’s kind of a while. For me, at least—for a fuckgirl who, prior to meeting her fuckboy, had never loved. Even a little. Fuck love—I’d never even really liked.

* * *

I spend every night with him. I write about him. I’ve taken blows to my friendships for him—I’ve had to ask for forgiveness from my best friends (and my family) who feel justifiably betrayed by my relationship with him. Because he’s most of my life right now, and I don’t see them as much as I should.

But that’s because it’s about to end. Because in two weeks, I go back to school. In one, he starts a 24-hour finance job—the kind that’ll keep him in the office till 6 a.m. We can’t be together now—it doesn’t make sense. And part of me is totally rational about it. And optimistic—he loves me, after all. And I love him. And we talk about the future with vague certainty—we’ll see each other whenever we can. We’ll talk whenever we can. And one day, we’ll be together, for real, again. Maybe in a year. Maybe in ten. In the meantime, we’ll work—on our careers, on ourselves…on becoming everything we want to be, independent of one another. And we’ll probably hook up with other people, but we’ll keep our hearts on hold—mine for him, his for me.

The other part of me, though—hypersensitive, idealistically romantic part—objects. The other part of me wants to believe we’re so in love that we’ll find a way. That after being apart for one week without being able to call me his girlfriend, he’ll panic, he’ll need me, and I’ll need him. And we’ll stay together through his first year of work and my last year of school. And that it won’t matter that we’ll never see each other or barely talk—that we won’t get jealous. That it won’t drive us mad. But it will. So we have to say goodbye—for now.

I feel like I’m living the backstory of a Fitzgerald novel. Like he’s about to get deployed for his first tour or some shit, and I don’t know when I’m going to see him again. Like I’ve just lived the best moments of my life, and now I have to say goodbye to the thing that gave them to me. It’s all very surreal. And I don’t know what to expect. And I’m scared.

I’ve decided to lean into all of it, though. I can’t tell myself not to cry—I can’t tell myself not to miss him. It’ll just make it worse. The more I try to push those emotions away, the more they’ll consume me. So I’m going to sit with them. I’m going to sit with the sadness, with the fear, with the uncertainty. I’m going to embrace them. I’m going to let myself feel them, and then I’m going to do the same for my art—I’m going to let that sadness, that fear, and that uncertainty write itself.

* * *

A few nights ago, you reminded me of that conversation we had outside of Spring Street Market the day I was leaving for summer. The one we had after days of going back and forth about the conditions of our relationship—were we dating? Were you my boyfriend? You said no. I told you to get your shit together—I wasn’t going to wait, and you’d regret it. You got it together. And then, a few nights ago, you looked right at me as you said something I’m sure I’ll never forget:

“Anything short of this would’ve been failure.”

You’re the first boy I’ve ever loved, and better yet—you’re the first boy who’s ever loved me. You made me happy when I thought I’d be sad. Exhilarated when I thought I’d be bored. And I’m going to think about you. And I’m going to miss you. And I’m going to love you until we can be together, for real, again. Anything short of that would be failure—and neither of us are very good at losing.