Oct 06, 2014, 09:57AM

This Is Where I Leave You

I'm no one's practice boyfriend.

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My phone lights up and your name appears above the message, “Hey, want to come over? ;)”. It’s two a.m., but through the cloudiness of my mind I can’t help but battle with myself. I think maybe this is the sign I needed to show you I’m capable of being with you. I put on my clothes. I brush my teeth because I don’t want you to taste the three beers and Chinese food on my breath; we both know what’s going to happen when I come over.

We’ve re-played this moment over and over. I’ll feel like I’m moving to where I want us to be, then you’ll cancel dinner plans or refuse to text me back for two days straight and it feels like you’re trying to wipe away everything that felt right about us.

My phone’s become an extension of myself because I check it so many times. But I get more emails from American Apparel than texts from you. My friends constantly remind me how unhealthy it is for me to feel so deeply intertwined with someone who’s emotionally volatile. They tell me I’m the practice boyfriend, and the practice boyfriend never gets the guy.

If you have one talent, it’s being a perfect reflection of my insecurities, highlighting for me all the things I wish I could morph myself into. One night we go on a date and you kiss me gently goodnight. The next you’re dumping me in the parking lot of a closed Chic-Fil-A. You’ll tell me how wonderful I am at one moment, and in the next you claim we’ll never work out. Yet it’s the nights you text, drunk, asking to come over and you end up falling asleep in my bed, and I hold on to hope. Sometimes when we speak, you are so present and connected, but at other times I feel like I’m speaking to someone I’ve never met. These random snapshots of the life I’m disillusioned into thinking we’ve built together fire like synapses in my brain; reminding me I’m doomed with you.

I can’t help myself though, because I know deep down you need me. You need me for the times you show the cracks between your perfectly pristine exterior, the times you cry, or feel insecure with your body, or drink too many beers and you have me pull over so you can throw up outside the window.

I know that one day I may have you. I know one day you may wake up and decide to give us a real try. I know you may take me on dates and kiss me goodnight and make love to me instead of fuck me. I know it may only be for a few months, perhaps a few years, but ultimately it will be a love built on borrowed time. I know I can’t be with someone so wavering, so this is where I leave you.


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