“I love you. It’s been a while ever since I realized my feelings, and today I wanted to express them to you.”
He looked at her, dumbfounded, so she pursued:
“Love is a weird thing you know. My internship was going downhill, my scholarship was about to end, and my family was about to kick me out because I was just a hindrance to them. My all world was crumbling down and you just appeared out of nowhere, getting coffee for your boss. You saw my distress as I was having an anxiety attack and said to me:
“Whatever’s happening, I’m sure it’s gonna be okay, breathe in, breathe out, take your time.”
You winked at me, then you rushed to the escalator which was about to close and I never got to see you of the whole internship. But I fell irremediably in love this time. And today I wanted to say it to you: I love you.”
She rose her eyes towards him as she was looking at the ground, far too scared to confront him face to face, and met his gaze. In a brief moment she thought she glimpsed disgust in his eyes but it disappeared quickly. He slowly opened his mouth to pronounce the fateful words that would torture her for long after this:
“I’m sorry, I don’t remember you. Are you sure you have the right guy? Maybe you are speaking of someone else with the same features. Well, if you’d excuse me, I have some business to attend to.”
Then, he left.
Mary stayed for a while, standing at the exact same spot, for so long that some middle schooler came asking if she was alright. She whispered a feeble “yes”, and started walking towards her home.
Was she alright? What a joke. Of course, she was. That airhead was just a bit taken aback, in a few minutes or so he would come running here, only to find out she was gone. Mary fantasized the scene over and over: him, disheveled and out of breath, looking around for her, a desperate look in his eyes, calling her name. Soon he’d start crying: he had also noticed her years ago and was mesmerized; better! Today was the day he wanted to confess on and she beat him to it! Her confession dumbstruck him and all he could do was to pretend he didn’t know her. How stupid must he feel right now. Yeah. How stupid.
How long was she going to blind herself? That man never took notice of her, and how could she blame him? All that she had ever done was backing him from the shadows. Was it useful for her to wake up at dawn and arrive at the office to tidy his room? To pour him a cup of coffee when he looked down, only for his secretary to bring it to him? It all went for naught because she was a coward.
Mary started getting annoyed by the wind, the cold, and the weather, pestering about the fact she had to walk to her apartment while the night was falling.
Cars were passing by, at an inconsiderate speed considering there were pedestrians around, and the sight of happy couples was making her sick. The world was buzzling and she was boiling in the inside. She thought she was going to explode from the shame and the agony that were building up in her stomach while the setting sun bathed her surroundings in a reddish light. Suddenly, she stopped in front of a fashion store she liked but never shopped to, fearing that people judge her for overdressing at work. She laughed wryly at herself: dressing like a six-years old stealing her mother’s clothes must have made her coworkers think she was serious then.
Mary sighed, cooling down; maybe she should have listened her mom. She should have dressed up and put on heavier make up. What if she was prettier or funnier? A bit bolder? Outspoken? He had liked her if she wasn’t so… Her. On a billboard, a girl was smiling, happy of her brand-new lipstick: that woman was perfect, she seemed nice and she wasn’t shy, as she was able to stand that her face was glued to a building, for all to see. “That’s the kind of woman he must like”, she thought, while comparing her face with the commercial’s edited one.
Was she really that insignificant? To be honest, during these 3 long years of unrequited love she kept dating, and even managed to get a boyfriend; however, he broke up with her because she was “boring”, and “didn’t want to go out”. He also mentioned she was too focused on her job.
Mary finally reached the bridge nearing her home. It’s was long and high structure, looking really sturdy, one of those you stop at the guardrail to admire the view: at this time, the sun had almost finished sinking under the sea and the sky was painted in the dreamy color dusk is.
Mary had always been a weak girl, with frail self-esteem and prone to self-loathing. In sophomore she was on antidepressant for a semester after breaking up with “the love of her life”. The shock from getting rejected in such cold way damped her spirit, and that night, she stopped at the middle of that bridge, tears flowing across her cheeks. What was she going to do know? She didn’t have a clue. She started that job to be near him, while doing a profession a bit related to her vocation; now all that remained was that stupid gig.
At this moment, Mary felt an impulse: all the feelings she felt in that short span of time guided her, and after taking a deep breath, her heart, pumping furiously in her chest, Mary screamed. From the top of her lungs, she let out a terrible sound, exposing her sorrow to the world. At that instant her mind was blank, she was only a cry, conveying her sadness and disappointment. Her scream made a baby cry in the distance.
Realizing what she had done, she quicky got moving, and inexplicably, chuckled: that second-hand embarrassment coming from herself was hard to deal with.
She then finished crossing the bridge, her heart a little less swollen. At home she’d eat an ice cream’s bucket she had put aside to follow a diet; she’d listen to sad love songs to cry her eyes out. It is a years-long crush we are talking about here. Maybe she wasn’t going to go to work tomorrow, and maybe she would go back to her studies: giving up on her dreams for a cutie she met 3 minutes wasn’t reasonable anyway. Her mind refreshed, Mary, keys in hand entered her living room, and dropped on the floor.
God. She wouldn't be able to forget that idiot immediately, and that's normal:
After all, she loved him.
I wrote this pleasant story during Valentine’s Day to put myself in the mood. As I never loved, I don’t know how heartbroken people feels, but I watched, read and heard, quantities of love-related stuff to grasp at least a small percentage of the pain you might suffer.
In this story I represented the 5 stages of grievance, that I thing, agree pretty well with the broken heart feeling (I had a tough time with Bargaining TBH). But if there’s one thing I like with those 5 stages, it’s the last, Acceptance. Because it warrants that life goes on and that you’ll be able to find someone, at the end of the day.