just don’t panic

The ghost of my life came back to tell me he had met someone else.
You may remember him from such tales as this one or maybe even this slightly sadder one.
For the first time in two years, the first time since us, he has finally felt this way again about someone else, someone new, someone I had seen a year ago and said ‘I think that’s someone you’re going to maybe love’ (I don’t know how I knew).
He said two things that stuck with me.
He said it will never be the same as what we had.
He said he will always love me.
I sent a screenshot of it to the best person I have ever known because I wasn’t sure how to put the words together in a way that made sense, although I was able to accurately and succinctly recall the story of how we started talking again (a photo with a date in the corner, marking it as exactly two years to the day but I didn’t see the date at first, I only thought it was a funny, weird looking photo with an old photo but two young souls staring back awkwardly).
He wrote back in a heartbeat.
‘I know that feeling. It’s just a feeling you’re feeling now.
‘This too will pass’
‘If you have to cry, cry’
‘Just don’t panic’
It was everything I needed to hear in that moment. With his permission, I burst into tears almost immediately but was done in minutes.
I didn’t panic. Instead, I felt strangely happy and elated. I was so incredibly happy for him. This was beautiful news! He was better. He had gotten past his demons. He could finally move on.
Boys that came before him still haven’t said those words to me (I feel this way with someone new). I wait for them to, hope that they will, pray that they will but they don’t. Maybe it’s not necessary to tell me. But maybe they haven’t. They still smile at me with nostalgia, still call, still write, still hope.
But this time, the chapter finished, the book has closed.
I had always thought this news would unravel me but I was already so unraveled, that there was no ball of wool left, only strings drawn out across a balcony.
Instead, this news had a strange, cathartic effect. I felt myself being wound up again, tightly knit together, safe, nestled.
‘You were lost before?’ someone implied.
He was such a big part of my life, my development. Like the moon, he ruled my emotions. He showed me a different way of existing that I could get on board with. And when he left, I could not replicate that, could not stand on my own. I was stubborn. It didn’t feel right, it wasn’t the same, how was I supposed to go on?
But now…? Something has awoken in me that has been dormant for two years. This craving. This desire. This need. This insatiable thirst for everything to happen all at once. To not blink, to not miss what’s in front of me.
Why haven’t I been writing? I mean I always wasn’t, but especially these last two years.
Has this all been going on without me? Have I been sabotaging myself this whole time?
And all that I’ve been fighting and trying for lately has simply been an attempt to forget, to heal, to feel better. A distraction here. Amnesia there. But nothing worked and so I slumped, gave up, bemoaned, decried, swore off the world.
But now.
A small ripple rises and rises. Engulfs me whole.
What joy to be alive.
What joy.

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