Love, you are my favorite affair. You are the girl waiting for me with her infinite espresso hair streaming across her shoulders and along her oversized denim button down. You are her eyes like pale blue ice, a thousand ice skaters running along their surface hand in hand with rosy cheeks and laughs so big they make their bellies hurt. You are her ivory petal skin with no make up, ever, just full cheeks and full lips and a small, aristocratic nose. You are the way she bursts out “That’s fanTAStic” when she sees something she loves. You are her soft, stubborn gaze and the way she is unapologetically herself, always. She is Athena who secretly wants to be Aphrodite but can’t help it, not really. She is soft and stubborn, the handle of the knife. The glossy wood. I see the blade but I- I cannot imagine her using it. Not now, not this new Rosy, not when she is trying so hard to be good. I wonder if this is who she is, who we are.
He is the one with the mad scientist hair whom I call very opinionated but whom everyone else calls an asshole. He told my best friend he is trying to be nice. I’m unsurprised. He is wicked smart. I imagine his mind to be a candle eternally burning. He only ever shares his flame, yet his annoyance flares at those who don’t share his immediate understanding I don’t know if he is happy like the Buddha quote shared metaphor insists. All I know is that he makes jokes and loves to talk about our love lives. We used to be lovers but it ended for reasons we both aren’t sure of ourselves. Bad timing I suppose. Three years have passed and we have always held this shared heart between us, nurtured it despite how illogical it is. I remember one day he forgot to take his medicine and he told me I was beautiful and tried to put his hand on my knee. He was so sleepy, so out of it, so vulnerable. I looked at him with sad eyes, gently reminded him that I had a boyfriend, that I knew where he was coming from but my heart did not feel it too. He apologized, ran his hand through that crazy chocolate hair. Now that we are single, we both decided to try something casual. A fling. Maybe sexual. My friends say it will help me. My best friends tell me it will break my heart. I’m not sure which.
And then, there is the ex, always. The one who made my heart burst out of my chest. I think we all have someone we are still a bit heartbroken over, a still bit in love with even though we have moved on. He is that tiny heartache. It is manageable. Occasionally, I spot a painting and grab my phone to share it with him and then remember he is not a part of my life. My eyes turn to oceans but I hold them in, steadily. I choose to have him gone. What I miss most is not the physicality, like my friends warn me. It is getting to hear about his day. It is just getting to witness him, be him, because that’s wonderful to me. I remember he told me he would find shapes in the swirled marble around his fireplace and that he loved, loved, loved, abstract art, specifically Rothko’s No. 8 from 1949. I remember his life laugh like seafoam gliding along taupe shores. I try not to think about it.
I especially try not think of my second ex, the one whose heart I broke, the one who broke me. He would sing me to sleep every night and write me poems every morning. We would spend hours and hours on the phone everyday, talking about everything and anything. I’m not sure exactly where we went wrong. Maybe it’s when he fell in love with my best friend. Maybe it’s when he got angry when I said no to sexting. Maybe it’s when I told him I hated him, that I wished I was sorry but I wasn’t. Maybe it’s when my best friend stopped talking to me and only to him. Maybe it’s when he kept her as his best friend and would talk to her on his Ask wall where everyone could see when he told me he was sleeping or studying. Maybe it’s when he told me that he wanted me to get used to her being around so he could date both of us at the same time. Maybe it was the first time I tried to leave him, or when I fell out of love with him halfway through our relationship, or when I finally did leave him, for good. I’m not sure. All I know is it broke us apart.
And then, there is myself. I am not in love with myself, but I do love myself, deeply. I love my art, my winding, ebony waves, my philosophical conjectures and infinite your mom jokes. I love my passion, the way I am so awed by mundane things such as the way sunlight spills through tree canopies and the bursting blue of the sky. I love how I am strong, resilient, lasting. I love how I try to be a good person, to be open hearted and trusting in spite of everything.