august 5, 2016

dear friend,

i just need someone to talk to

i’ve had a lot on my mind lately. mostly about a boy. he lives a little far from me, but he’s worth the drive when i get to see him. the distance may suck sometimes and he’s not really great at communicating most of the time. to be honest, i get a little hurt when he doesn’t reply to me quickly or at all, but i’m working on fixing my impatient ways.

sometimes, i feel like i’m being annoying when i bother him too much. i start to overthink things when he doesn’t talk to me for days. i start feeling like i did something wrong or i’ll start thinking that i’m not enough. i put myself down so much– i guess so he won’t. i know that’s not healthy, but i just want to be his somebody, like i’m someone worthy– an important piece of his life that he can’t let go of, because that’s how i feel about him.

when he’s not around, he’s all i can think about and what makes me sad is that i’m not the person he thinks about when he’s alone. instead, he’s thinking about her and that’s because she’s the one that hurt him. do you understand?

i get the feeling that he doesn’t think about me at all. he doesn’t show it. he doesn’t tell me he misses me unless i say it first. he doesn’t tell me something reminded him of me. he doesn’t dedicate any songs to me. he doesn’t even ask me how my day has gone. and he doesn’t wish me a good night’s sleep like he used to.

that’s how he makes me feel when i’m not around him and i know i shouldn’t expect much from him because i realize that i do, but in this given moment, i have nobody else in my mind of who i can see myself with for the rest of my life.

so, i start telling myself that i’m going to be lonely for the rest of my life and that i can live with that idea. if i can’t have this one guy, well, nobody else is going to make me as happy as he did. nobody will compare. and each day that passes, i start to believe that will be true someday.

he’s not one to talk, much less show his emotions. i’m constantly on the lookout for any sign of subtle abnormal body movement or facial expression, just to even guess what he’s thinking about. i try to call him, on nights when i’m missing his voice the most, but he never answers, much less urges to call back.

but then i start thinking about all the feelings he makes me feel when he is finally around me, in my presence, breathing the same air i’m breathing.

like when i see him for the first time in a long time– my heart starts racing, my legs give out, my hands begin to sweat and shake, and i can’t even breathe right.

when i’m around him, i forget about the world. i forget about my problems. it’s like he has the power of reversing gravity and he doesn’t even know it. 

and when he smiles, i can’t help but smile with him.

and when he laughs, i can’t help but laugh with him.

and when he looks at me, i can’t look away.

and don’t even get me started with his voice.

and when we cuddle, i can’t help but love the feeling when he holds me tighter when he feels me slipping away– it makes me feel safe, sheltered, protected. he feels like home.

and in my eyes, he can do no wrong.

i will be honest and say that he doesn’t have a great personality. it is good, though, or at least good enough for me. he’s mostly there for me when i need him. he can relate to me and knows exactly how i’m feeling even when i can’t fully explain why. and i like that he is so innocent– that’s probably my favorite trait.

i just wish he showed a little more appreciation. i wish he tried a little harder. and i also wish he didn’t shut people out when he is sad, but i guess that’s just who he is and i’m willing to love those bad habits of his even though i know they’ll bother me down the line and maybe hurt me.

he’s been making bad choices lately when he’s sad like drinking and smoking. i really wish he didn’t do that. there’s other ways to mend pain or at least distract it.

for example, he could start journaling like i do. i didn’t know what else to do when he left me the way he did, but i found my medium. i write letters to him even though i’m well-aware that he’s never going to read them, but i had no other choice.

i just hope he doesn’t regret the drinking and the smoking later in life. i really do care about him and his well-being so much. i just wish he cared and loved himself as much as i do. i want him to be happy. of course, i want him to be happy, but i desire to be the one that makes him happy.

so, do i think he’s worth it? i’m not sure. maybe he is. maybe he’s not. and if he’s the latter, then that makes me sad because i want to be his happiness even if it kills me. i want to be the person that puts a smile on his face. i want to be what he is to me. i just want him to feel the things i feel toward him, but i can’t make someone love me, can i?

he’s in love with someone else. someone that he’s loved for a very long time. but she left him and she’s off with some other guy, living another life, another story with someone else and he doesn’t deserve that.

“she’s talking to some other guy. she’s happy, but i want to be the one that makes her happy.”

he said that one day to me and i broke down a little inside at the fact that he is so oblivious at the fact that i am right there in front of him, listening to the pain in his voice and i can’t do anything about it. instead, he was drinking and drinking, wasting his life away. if he really loved her, shouldn’t he be out there chasing her? winning her back?

someone else out there loves him and cares for him so deeply and would do anything in the world just to make him happy. that someone is me, but he won’t choose me because i’m a he. do you understand?

i’m here, waiting for him like a sad lost puppy. he hurts me when he’s hurting over her because just like seeing him happy makes me happy, seeing him sad makes me sad too. he ignores me too much even if it’s just a simple text that says, “i hope you’re having a better day today!” i don’t even get a thank you and all i’m trying to do is make him smile again because i miss it. that’s all i need. i need to feel validated by your smile.

the things he feels for her right now: the sadness, the loneliness, the rejection, that hole in his chest where his heart once was, all those feelings he has toward her, they’re exactly how i feel about him.

so, why is it that he puts me through this? he tells me he feels bad when he hurts me and that he doesn’t mean to, but he does it anyway. i want to believe it’s not intentional, but he says nothing to stray me away from my bad thoughts. instead, he shuts me out.

i miss the old him, the one that used to be happy all the time. i hope that person still exists. i hope he’s still alive. and if he is, i hope he comes back soon because i hate to see what he’s doing to himself.

i love him as a friend, but i want to be more than that. i worry about him so much. i know i shouldn’t but it’s in my nature. i’m a worrier, not a warrior.

i’ll be patient. when he’s ready, i’ll be here for him. i’ll be his shoulder to cry on when he’s sad. i’ll be the wall he wants to punch when he’s angry. i’ll be the one to catch him when he falls.

i just hope he doesn’t make me wait too long because only he can put my broken heart back together.

love always,
alex

November 4, 2020

Good evening Alex, I came across your Instagram account about three years ago. Your posts and poetry are really heartwarming, especially when the …

November 2, 2020

Good evening Anon,

I just wanted to start off by saying, thank you for reaching out and saying those kind words. I’m glad that my writing and my poetry have helped you in ways that (sometimes) I don’t comprehend, but I guess it’s because I don’t give myself enough credit. Honestly, there’s days when I hate it and don’t understand how other people can relate to the things I write about, but I think that’s in every artists’ mind– to hate their own art.

So, thank you so much for that kind, validating reminder.

It tears my heart apart to read what you’ve written to me. It’s such a tragedy, to go what you’ve been through. And I just wanted to say and to remind you that everything that you’re feeling: the hurting, the crying, not eating, not drinking, and feeling like you could do something you’ll regret– that is normal and natural when you are grieving.

You.
Are.
Grieving.

And I just want to make sure that you know, anything you’re doing and everything you’re feeling is natural and it is valid. Take all the time you need to get over this person, but you must remember to also take care of yourself.

In case you don’t know my whole story, I’ll paraphrase it for you because we seem to have gone through a similar situation, but I believe we’ve felt the same thing.

I fell in love with this boy whom I’ve known since High School, but I didn’t really know I loved him at the time. We had a class together, but that was only Freshman year. We didn’t really talk, at all, actually, after that, but we kept up every once in a while when we’d see each other during lunch or run into each other in the hallways. Looking back, I realize now that I always found him attractive, but I was only 15 and I wasn’t sure if it was attraction or curiosity. I was still figuring myself out back then.

Fast forward eight years later, we rekindled after he and his girlfriend broke up. I was there for him for literally the worst time of his life. He was in a really bad place. He started doing drugs and drinking alcohol excessively (the latter which he never really did, to my understanding), sometimes both. I couldn’t help but wonder what happened to the boy that was always smiling in High School.

When I heard that him and his girlfriend of about 5 years broke up, I travelled to Austin just to go see him. At the time, I was still with my boyfriend, so he went with me too. Honestly, I reluctantly took him, but I know myself and I, too, would have done something I would’ve regretted.

If I’m being honest though, my boyfriend at the time knew how I felt about him and didn’t mind it. We were together for over 6 years, and it just got to that point where we both knew we weren’t happy with each other anymore and if me being with this other guy for a weekend made me happy, it made him happy for me.

I can’t describe how nice and validating it felt to be there for him when he needed me the most. I remember being in the hotel room with him while my boyfriend was in the restroom and holding his hand and asking him if he’s okay.

“I’m okay right now,” he said. Do you understand how important that made me feel? Even if it was just a weekend, it was enough for me and obviously enough for him that we were sitting side-by-side of one another. How our presence alone lifted the weight of our collapsing world off our shoulders.

I did my best to keep him distracted. I took him to the arcade. That was nice. He taught me how to play Typing of the Dead. It was actually pretty funny– I’m a writer, constantly typing away on my computer, but oddly enough, he was beating me at the game and keeping me alive. How ironic.

He spent the night with me and my boyfriend in the hotel. We mostly talked. He said she cheated. I told him he didn’t deserve that. He knew that, but I guess he was still hung up on her for some reason. I mean, I get it, she’s his first love, but is it really that worth it? Was he really that blinded?

I guess he was, because I was right there…
Right…
There.

The next morning, I remember him waking up to phone calls and text messages from his cousins he was living with because they freaked out that he didn’t get home the night before. So, I took him home (alone), but not before I bought him Chick-Fil-A.

“You don’t have to get me anything. I don’t have any money,” he said, but I insisted. I expected nothing in return and I knew if I didn’t buy him anything to eat, he wouldn’t have eaten anyway.

I dropped him off after saying goodbye more times than my one hand can count. If there’s anything we both had in common, it’s that we dreaded goodbyes. I could tell he didn’t want to leave my side and I sensed that he had a good time and that I made him happy, really happy.

I felt like I had a purpose when I was around him– that purpose being to mend not just his heart, but his soul too. I saw it in his eyes. He wasn’t just broken beyond repair, he was shattered; lost in a void. All I ever wanted was to be there for him to make sure that he’s okay because he deserves so much happiness, but what came next made me realize: you can’t save anybody.

The following month, after that weekend with him, we kept in touch every other day and for once, he was messaging me first. The “Good morning” or “Good night” texts were always the best, because I knew I was either the very first thing he thought of when he woke up or the very last thing he thought of before going to sleep.

The month after that, I finally broke it off with my boyfriend. After 6 and a half long years of being together, we finally admitted to ourselves that we just weren’t happy anymore. We were just using each other and kept things going because we were comfortable and complacent. We thought we deserved each other, but how did we know that if we never tried finding love with someone else? Or even within ourselves?

I then took the opportunity to have more alone time with this other boy who was still broken, distraught, and grieving the loss of his girlfriend. Even though it had already been four months by this time, I didn’t judge him nor did I ever make him feel uncomfortable. Grieving takes time. He needed space. But I also knew he needed a shoulder to cry on every once in a while. So, I let it be. Whenever he needed me, I was there for him.

For the following months, we started to do a lot more things together. I got him into a lot of TV shows. He got me hooked on some anime. We ate a lot of junk food together. My favorite time was when we both made s’mores for the first time and he got his lips, cheek, and fingers all messy with the chocolate and the marshmallows. It was really cute and funny.

I learned a lot about him, but I also felt like I didn’t know enough. I learned more about his family and how they’re very religious and not very accepting of gay people. His mom thinks it’s a sin and I can’t recall what his father thinks of it all.

He told me one time that his little nephew was outside in the backyard with his dad while he was working out to some old school Metallica. His mom went outside to grab the baby because she didn’t want him listening to “Devil’s music.” I can’t imagine how she feels about gay men.

I also learned how he’s not accepting of himself. It still hurts me today to think about this certain conversation. I remember it like it was just yesterday.

It was passed midnight. We were lying on my bed, having a deep conversation like we always did, when suddenly, a certain question that had been lingering in my head for weeks came to me like a boomerang.

I got up from laying next to him and sat on his lap. Looking in his eyes and tapping on his chest, I said, “Can I ask you something?”

“Of course,” he said.

“Does anybody know that you like guys?”

He paused. His heart started beating faster.

“No.” He paused again, then continued, “Well, she does, but we don’t talk about it.”

“Why don’t you guys talk about it?”

“Because.”

“Because, why?”

“Because.” I could tell he was trying to find the words to say, but didn’t know how to say it. “Because. I’m not. ‘That.’“

That. I thought. He’s so ashamed to say it out loud.

I tried to get it out of him why he couldn’t say the word: Gay. From what he began to tell me, he had quite the reputation in middle school. Apparently, a lot of people made fun of him for making out with some guy and I guess that stuck to him through high school and even after that. He has brothers and sisters too, so I can only assume that they heard the rumors as well and he just didn’t want the news to get to his parents. But by Junior year, he got with his girlfriend and had been with her ever since, making those rumors void.

We started talking about her that night too. “What if she comes back to you?” I asked.

“She won’t,” he lied, but was he lying to me or to himself?

“But what if she does?” I repeated.

“I won’t get back with her. I hate her.”

I should’ve known he was deflecting. I should’ve known that he was lying to me, to himself, to his heart. I just should’ve known…

It wasn’t until a few months later that my worst fear came to fruition. She indeed, came running back to him. They tried to fix things for a good month and I already felt him slipping away. He stopped texting me first. He stopped texting me “Good morning” and “Good night.” He stopped wondering what I was doing and the worst part was that we didn’t get to finish the season finale of The Flash. It sounds pathetic, I know, but that’s something that was our thing, and I couldn’t help but envision him watching those finales with her instead.

Christmas came around and I had bought him some clothes from my favorite store. I kept telling him that he had a gift waiting for him at my house, but he never had time to get it.

New Year’s came around too, still nothing.

Two weeks later, he finally stopped by, but in the back of my head, I feel like he only showed up because he felt bad that I bought him something. To be honest, I don’t think he would’ve showed up if I didn’t have anything for him. I feel like he did it out of pity.

That night was the worst night of my life. Had I known then what I know now, I would’ve said goodbye to him instead of confessing my feelings for him. I remember telling him, “I don’t care if you’re with someone. I don’t care if I’m with someone. I don’t care if it’s a year from now or even ten. I will always be here for you. And I will always love you. I don’t want you to ever think otherwise.”

He cried. I left him speechless for a moment, to which he finally found the words to say, “I just don’t know how to feel. I don’t know what I want. At first, I just wanted to be friends. And we did that. But then things happened and I liked that too. I just don’t know how to be more than friends. I don’t know how to be your boyfriend.” Then, I cried.

I told him that it was okay and that I just wanted him to be happy, but I knew I was lying when I said that because I just wanted him to be happy with me.

“I’ll see you later” were the last words he ever said to me. That was on January 15, 2017 and I hate that I remember the date. It makes me feel stupid or that I haven’t been able to move on from him. And maybe that’s true. The only difference between the me now and the me then, is that I’ve grown to accept that I will always love him.

He is the boy that got away. He is the boy with green eyes. He is the one that broke my heart into a million pieces and I thought I could never put those puzzle pieces together, but I did and I am. It just takes time. How much time is up to you.

You need to go back to doing the things you loved doing most. Get back into running. Force yourself to get out there. Do things you’ve never done before. Find new passions. Fall in love with something you thought you’d never fall in love with before. Love takes many shapes and forms. Don’t think that you can’t fall in love with a thing instead of a person.

Read books. Write a book. Learn a language. Start a journal. Listen to more music that’s out of your genre. Get out of your comfort zone. Eat at a restaurant alone. Go have a picnic alone. Travel down the highway with nowhere to go with the music blasting and put the windows down and watch the stars. Look up at the moon more often. Smell the roses. Join a club. Start doing CrossFit. Run half marathons. Hell, maybe even a marathon. Appreciate the small things and don’t let opportunities pass your way when they are presented to you. Say “yes” more often.

Slowly but surely, you will heal, but you can’t expect to heal if you’re not trying. You can’t expect to be baby-fed. Set goals without a time limit because a time limit will discourage you. I promise you, you will be okay. When? I don’t know. Everybody has their own grieving process, but I promise things will get better.

Just, please, please do me a favor? Make sure you drink some water after reading this letter? And I hope you’ve eaten enough today.

Much love,
Alex

November 2, 2020

Good evening Alex,

I came across your Instagram account about three years ago. Your posts and poetry are really heartwarming, especially when the days are bad. Thank you for creating such a great space for people to share your experiences and stories.

I haven’t been doing okay lately.

Last year, I met someone who was really amazing. She was sweet and kind– different from most, I would say. At the time, I wasn’t looking for anything, but she changed everything. I was happy. I thought we were great together.

I’ve always been a hopeless romantic. I wanted to spoil her for Valentine’s Day. I did and it didn’t go well. The day she received everything, she ended things with me and Ubered everything I got her that same hour. It wasn’t a nice thing to go through and I guess I’m still going through it.

I haven’t felt like this about anyone before. I try to check up on her by texting her. Sometimes she’ll reply, but majority of the time, she leaves me on read. I still really like her and care about her, but she doesn’t seem to appreciate everything I do.

I’ve always thought that my heart was always the best thing about me, but I guess that too is not enough anymore. It hurts. It brings me to tears. I feel so pathetic to be going on and complaining about this, especially with what’s going on with the world and COVID. I just don’t know what to do anymore. I’m not sleeping well– can hardly keep my mind off her. I’m hardly eating either. If it wasn’t for my dogs, I think I would have done something I’ll regret.

Getting flashbacks of how things were and what they could of been– it’s so painful. I used to be happy before her. I used to be very active. I loved running and staying in shape. I haven’t been able to do those things over the years, it’s like I lost a piece of myself.

I always tried to keep the communication going between us because she won’t text me unless I do it first. We talked a month ago. She was going through some stuff. I tried to help her and be there for her. It seemed to be like old times, but she told me she has a boyfriend. During the time we communicated, she never mentioned him. I get weak moments and I send her a message just to make sure she’s okay and safe, but I get no response.

She looks happy with him. She deserves to be happy. She deserves everything. I just wish it could be with me. I’ve always thought by some miracle, we’d end up together again. I know how naïve and stupid that sounds. I had hope, but I guess now that’s never going to happen.

I know I’m breaking my own heart by trying to keep in touch with her and stuff, but I don’t know what to do anymore. I’m a 25 year old guy that’s been holding on to her for so long. I just can’t breathe anymore. I just need everything to stop.

Sincerely,
Anonymous

november 1, 2020

dear crush,

i see you, but you do you see me? because i notice you from afar, when you step into a room, and how your smile lights up at the sight of someone you love and how i wish you’d smile at me like that, even if it was in a friendly way. 

i know you know i exist, but i don’t wanna just exist to you. i want to be a part of your every day life. i want to know what makes you angry. i want to know what makes you happy. and i want to know what your guilty pleasure is when you’re feeling sad and alone and eating your feelings away. 

i want to get to know the real you and not the you that wears a mask around everyone. you’re so shy and introverted, but i can sense that you’re the complete opposite with someone you know you can trust, someone who won’t judge you. 

i wish we could be closer, closer than what we already are, but i don’t know how to tell you that without jeopardizing what we already have. we may be “fine” now, but what happens if i say something that crosses that line and makes you uncomfortable and pushes you away? or worse, completely shut me out of your life forever? i don’t want that…

it kind of reminds me of mother earth being in love with the sun– the absolute thing that gives her life and how she has no idea how to repay him. how does she love him back if she can’t even get close to him, to kiss him, without being burned and destroying every single thing he created for her. what a beautiful tragedy. if only you understood that’s exactly how i feel about you. 

how do i love you without getting hurt? how do i say how i feel without pushing you away? or are we just two introverts, afraid of being rejected, when the ironic truth is, that we both feel the same, but we’re too afraid to speak up…

love always,  alex

June 21, 2020

Our paths crossed the other day. You were driving west as I was driving east just outside your neighborhood. Yeah, I know where you’re living now. I promise it was a complete accident. You drove by me once and I recognized your car immediately. I take the same road you do to get home. It just so happened, I guess, that our lives and our hearts, were in sync that night, just like the other day. 

When I saw your car again, time slowed, my mind began to race and I kept chanting to myself “That’s not him.” But then you drove closer to me and I couldn’t keep lying to myself that it was in fact you. I had my windows down as I always do, listening to my favorite song that reminds me of you. 

I wanted so desperately to say hello or maybe wave at you to catch your attention, but what was the point if I did that anyway? I guess, in the back of my head, I hoped that you feel the same symptoms as I do at the sight of you. I want you to feel this yearning pain in my heart. I want to ruin your day just like you ruined mine. I want to occupy your brain for once, even if it’s just for a moment. 

I just can’t believe I saw you. I can’t believe that after all these years and all this precious time wasted, you still have this power over me. This power that takes my breath away, makes my hands shake, and breaks my heart all over again. But you also have this power to make me so happy to see your beautiful face again. In times like this, I know I’d still recognize you with your mask on, because it was your green eyes that I fell in love with. 

I sometimes wonder if you’d recognize me behind the mask. I bet you wouldn’t.  It just hurts and I don’t like this feeling I get when I see you. The sight of you reminds me of how much my heart yearns for you and I don’t know how to not notice it.

I’m happy to know you’re alive and healthy. At least, for once in a very long time, our lives and our hearts were in sync again and I’m very grateful for that. 

it seems to be
impossible
to find someone
i want and need,
much less
find someone
who wants and needs
me too, but
i’m a patient person
and i’m hopeful that
someday,
somewhere,
somehow,
my other half
is waiting for me too

i just hope it’s in this lifetime…

© Letters From Alex

I used to make up
scenarios in my head
of what it would be like
to see your eyes again.
Of all the ones I imagined,
the worst just had to happen.

© Letters From Alex

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