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then one night i lay there watching how the light from the street lamps made love to the shades casting stripes of translucent gray across everything. and i remembered falling for him… | Secret Keepers by Emily Joy Rosen

then one night
i lay there
watching how the light
from the street lamps
made love
to the shades
casting stripes
of translucent gray
across everything

and i remembered
falling for him

i was “in”
way before he was
something about
his sincerity
just melted me
and i fell fast
and hard

just as hard
as i fell out
of falling

one sentence
shattered the sweetness
and i was sober
and attached

oh no
i thought
this cannot be
how embarrassing

i held the phone
after we hung up
for 15 minutes
sitting on the floor
of a law school’s lobby
in nyc
in too much shock
to shed a tear

and i got clear
i was living
in a very different
than he was
and feelings
were not shared
at least not between
him and me

it’s amazing
how one sentence
changes everything
how a few words
can ruin
what you thought
to be true

but something
tender happened here
i was already so far in
i wasn’t ready
to let it end

there was no way
i was ready to let go
there was something
beyond reasoning
that kept me in
willing to try again

and i fell hard

i am not typically
a girl
to do repeat falling
i don’t do
break up
make up
break up
make up

i have always wondered
how people do it
perhaps they are naturally
more forgiving than me?
maybe just forgetful?

i don’t know
but it’s hard for me
to recover
once open
and tweaked

if something gets in
and stings

but if it cuts deep
i am not one to twist the knife
at least not anymore
at least not again
but this time
i did
i went
back in

my fear
the clenching
in my belly
and the gasping
of my heart
i chose
to open again

it felt good
to choose
i remember thinking
the old me
who i used to be
would not
have been able
to choose

i would have
pretend shut down
faking that i didn’t care
acting cold
and distant
when i wanted to scream
“how could you do this to me”

but you see
i get it now
there is nothing
being done to me
just people being people
doing the best they can
based on what they believe
struggling through
uncharted territory
where two people try
to find a middle ground
a place to connect
and make sense of it all

i used to think
being the one
wanting more
made a fool
of me

i used to think
being the one
who cares more
made me

i used to think
it was just
plain terrifying
to lean into

but i don’t anymore
not at all
i don’t even think
it’s the most scary thing

you know what
scares me mostly…
things unspoken
feelings unfelt
love unexpressed
stories untold
memories not made

this is what i find
most frightening

so as the sun
began to rise
and light filled
the room
as the stripes
from the shades
casting shadows
i felt the peace
of knowing
at the very least
i will have

at the very least
i will have
so many stories
that i got to live
because i gave it my all

if i could have my gravestone
say only one thing
it would be that

it would be
this girl
she gave it her all
she gave everything

❤️emily joy rosen

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