Love Meant…

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Love meant loyalty, kindness, being present, conversing as equals, deep snuggles on the sofa, your arm around my shoulder, my head pressed to your heart feeling safe for the first time all day. Love meant having dinner ready, making sure the house looked nice and the fridge was full. Love meant being a good mom, picking out good clothes for my family, and being prepared months in advance for the holidays. That was in the early days when I had purpose and felt a part of the family I had worked so hard to create.

All of that is dead now. Choices were made that still leave me stunned, vailed insults where whispered, and kisses were avoided with a look that suggested that instead of offering love I had offered shit on a spoon. I loved, I still love, and yet I am shit on a spoon offering kisses and begging for hugs that were unwanted, given only because the therapist said my need for basic love was warranted. 

I will never understand love, why my heart pours it out like a river that is always flowing, yet never returned. Why I believe that being loving will garner me the right to be loved. Why my being present, being honest, being raw with my emotions is repugnant. I will never know love because apparently, I don’t know how to do it properly.

Should I have been cold, played games, spent all the money on hair and heals. Should I have flirted with my personal trainer and stayed out too late with my phone off. Should I have neglected our child and spent more time with my friends just to keep you jealous? I can’t ask you now. You’re with her and I’m here watching the snow fall and wishing that all this was over. I want to scrub you from my skin, but your touch is like vomit in a white carpet, the smell and the stain wont wash out. 

I will never understand love, how it can be taken and not returned. How it can be used and not appreciated. How it can be cultivated and shredded from one day to the next, your smiling almond eyes that made me glow one moment were withdrawn the next, your voice withheld as I was left to feel unseen and alone. Were we ever really a couple, or was I just a box checked on your list of accomplishments that you were told would make you a man? Are you a man now because you juggled me and her? Are you a man because you chased other women, and then played pure and innocent when you came home to me? I will never forget the shame I felt when I asked my doctor to test me for VD’s. Your cruelty has taught me what our love meant.

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