I tell Andrew hearts always break in the same places. The weak points are sought out and shattered over and over again. We do not grow back stronger. It is the same hurt every time.
We know these feelings. We recognize them. We remember just how to scream into pillows and sob on staircases. We’ve been here often. We’ll return before we’re ready.
At dinner Mark stops me when I say, “I think I’ll be fine.” He holds steady until I meet his eyes.
“No. There is no ‘think’,” he says gruffly, “I know you’ll be fine. Better than fine. I know it.”
I feel almost guilty for believing him. For acknowledging the fact this is just another one of those moments we go through, that go through us. That we always walk away from. Every time.
Over and over I repeat the story. Each time becoming further removed from it. Until it’s nothing but a monologue I recite when prompted. Something I can put down and walk away from. Like the dress I threw in the trash because I was wearing it when Mason told me he wanted a divorce. Pretending I could separate myself from the statement by separating myself from the clothing.
No, it may not be that easy, but it is similar, isn’t it? We hand the words off to anyone who will listen, keeping only a tiny piece of them in a coat pocket to be discovered next season. And bit by bit time softens the edges of everything. Staircases worn down after thousands of years of footsteps. We do not remember what they looked like when they were new. That is not what makes them precious.