and then i think “you, again.” it has been a while since i last saw you and i am wondering why we are meeting again. my emotions are the same and they haven’t changed for years; dread, disgust and disdain. but this time you are different and it feels strange to hear your voice. i don’t remember what the first words that left your mouth were because i am not listening. i am indignant and i am disinterested. the words that leave you mean nothing if they aren’t an apology.
and then i realize that you have strung her along. i think “she looks better in person” but i won’t let myself admit it. i wonder if she knows what you did and i wonder if she would look at you the same way that i do – a coward. i am angry and there is always a bitter aftertaste when you are the subject. i look at her; i see kindness and perhaps even a little naivety that i used to have. what was it that my mother called it? young love.
but i see past the kindness in her eyes and her genuine curiousity at the aggression unfolding on my end. i am indignant but i am at a loss for words. i am fighting a war of my own as i try to think of what to say to you. i have brought up this hypothetical situation over and over in my head but nothing quite cuts it when it happens in reality. but then you break the silence before i can by telling me that she is better than me. and what surprises me is that it hurts. why does it hurt?
immediately i lash out and point out your most glaring physical flaw. the pits on your face are greater in number and they cover your entire face now. i spit out a “at least i look better than you” and instantly a bad taste forms in my mouth. the words hang heavy with regret on my tongue. why is it that even in dreams, i seek to win?
i get up. i realize that i have woken up before my alarm. i am shaken because of how alarmingly aware and conscious i felt i was. i still feel anger coursing through my veins and i feel out of control. i think to myself that i am not this bitter resentful person. i am not. but there i was looking and feeling visibly affected and maybe if i convince myself long enough, i can tell you that i am better than this. that i am better than you because i have forgiven you. i am better than this. but i think we both know that i am not.