I recently read a small poem from one of my favorite author’s Nayyirah Waheed. I usually dive into her unique poems on cultural and women empowerment but today’s poem had a quite different impact.
“Stay is a sensitive word. We wear who stayed and who left–in our skin forever.”
I read the poem twice to make sure the hit to my chest wasn’t just in my mind. Who stayed and who left?
I quickly realized that I was the person who left. I was that person. Leaving without hesitation, without explanation. I could not grieve with the readers of this poem, who plagued through broken hearts stained with people who had left them.
I then realized. I break my own heart.
I’ve broken my own heart countless times to ensure that no one leaves a mark on my life. It has helped me bypass the stages of grief that everyone talks about. I can’t relate. Each and every time I’ve come to a place of peace with someone, I’ve ensured myself that something will happen. I exit swiftly without hesitation.
I started to look back at all my relationships, even the ones that were minor or “just in the talking stage.” There is a common thread to all of them. They didn’t end it. I did. Not a clear defining end. But subtle exits such as “Hey I’ve been busy” or “I just have a lot going on.”
So what does this mean? Well first I’ve managed to break my own heart before a guy ever has the opportunity to.
I referred back to the poem. “Stay is a sensitive word.”
Second, I realized that I wanted someone to stay. In my stupid mind, I didn’t want to get hurt. But I always thought in one way or another, that someone would look for me. That the guy I pushed away would fight and not let me slip that easily.
But that’s ridiculous. You can’t expect that from someone. I think I’m more afraid of someone hurting me, then being alone. Being alone, I can handle. Running away or exiting swiftly is even easier.
The tough part is actually letting someone leave a mark, whether good or bad. Yeah I have yet to allow someone to do that. That fear of leaping into someone with all your vulnerability. It scares the crap out of me.
I can’t blame anyone but myself for leaving. The same way I leave without explanation, is the same thing that I fear someone will do to me.
So I’m trying. I’m vouching that I won’t try to find the easy way out anymore. And I can’t expect someone to fight for me, if I’m not willing to fight for them myself.