Bruges; the city of dreams. I was in love whilst I was in Bruges. It had always been one of those cities I would only dream of visiting. I’m not sure why I found it so perfect, but I did. I was in love. Or perhaps, that is why it was perfect. I was in love. But was I? Can’t be… Love doesn’t work that way. I have felt more joy, more pain, more everything… But this pain was physical. It took me by surprise. I could have sworn one minute I was walking into the city where our story would come to life. However, before I could properly feel what we had been awaiting, it fled, leaving me there with such an ache… It was suffocating and nearly made me sick instantly. The one who I had left to cry several weeks ago, had left me to cry this time. Though, once again, both hurt, and alone.
I had nothing to say for the everything I felt. It was all I could do to not break down in front of him, but I did not want to miss one moment. One more chance to take it all in. And then he would be gone. Just like that. How this could all end I have no idea. What would even come of this? We knew nothing could. After all; that’s travel. One minute you love, the next you lose. One day I’m walking the streets of Spain with you, the next I’m hoping the rain will help rid me of what’s left of you. But it won’t. Trying to wash away the memory of you. But I can’t.
I walked away so fast when I left him at the station to take his train. I refused to watch him leave, so naturally, I had to walk away. As I went back downstairs in the station, my throat felt so tight; I was all flustered… But my god… how I wanted to run back up and hold him, for just one minute, one hour, one year… However long it would take for me to get tired of him, but I would never. I will not see him tomorrow, nor the day after, nor will we be impatiently waiting to jump into each other’s arms in the town square. He was gone, I was gone. It was all gone. I walked back to the streets he had so graciously walked me through, whilst telling a story each time. I saw all the same things I had seen with him, only this time they made me feel lost. I did not know where to go, what to do, I felt so far from him, in his own town. His last words to me so sweet, his eyes looked at me in way they hadn’t before. It was hard to reach him as I had normally felt I was able, but I saw that I managed in other ways; his eyes betraying him.
I should have said more. I should have told him everything. It’s the same thing all the time. You lose, you miss, you long for, you cry, you hurt, you try to make it right, but you can’t. It will not be right. It just is the way it is. I have to let go. Again. Let go of the life in Madrid, the drunk video chats in Barcelona, the sweet exchanges in France, the seemingly earth shattering ten minute long falling out in Geneva, the anticipation in Brussels, and the magic in Bruges. I have to let go of the way he would leave me voice messages, the way he never lets me walk on the outside of the side-walk, the way he holds me at a cross walk as if I have never crossed the street before, the way we play pool whilst he pretends he’s not semi-pro and lets us play with no rules, he who has been there every single day.
Today was my first day without him, the way he would normally be. I have been walking alone for weeks, but today I walked a different kind of alone. Without my friend, my person, my whatever he had become that no words could fit well enough. He goes on, I go on, but not together. Not the same. My love for others in my heart has not been diminished or overpowered. There seems to be an abundance of love when it comes to meeting people I choose to let it in. All the loves so strong, so raw, so precious.
I need not define it more than that. At least not for now. Love is love. Loss is loss. I will fill in the gaps along the way with different perspectives and countless steps around the world; the only way I know how to right now. The only way that has never failed. The only way I can truly find a balance between my mind and my heart, in which one does not end up hindering the other. I wonder what that third component is that allows for such balance and peace. Perhaps it is love. The love that is larger than the loves along the way. The love that paves the way, ultimately. That is probably the lace that ties the mind and heart so perfectly to nurture the body and soul.
All I do know, though, is that the only way I can get there again is if I let go. So I surrender, stop trying to control, and let go… Letting go of everything except the beauty that was magical enough to leave me with such intense emotion, and that consequently is so difficult to be without due to its strength. This is why losing it makes you feel weak. I always saw these things as polaroid photos. The moment was there, you snap the shot, and you wait for it to develop into something you can hold onto. Well, that period of time when you are waiting for the white film to unveil the photograph is that initial stage of losing. The loss of your way, your senses, your control, not knowing what to expect, not knowing what it will look like, and anxious to make sure the moment never has to end… But if you let go, let it appear, and allow it to immortalise, you will see, it will be exactly the way it is meant to be.
Write you soon,
P.S: I hope you know now how much you meant to me.