“I don’t think I can do this anymore”, she said as she turned away and ran, fighting back a pool of tears. She had struggled to avoid eye contact, it was killing her and i could tell she had been crying. I knew eventually it’ll come to this, I was sure I was prepared to handle it when it finally did but this was nothing liked what I’d imagined…Instead…
My heart skipped a beat! It became a whole lot harder to breathe, and everywhere suddenly became chilly. It felt like pellets of ice were clustering, forming a solid ice box around my heart…And then, it shattered!
I staggered and reached for support, my legs were struggling to support my own weight. The world was spinning recklessly, coming to an end…my end. I literally couldn’t live without her. I stood there helpless, watching her leave until my vision got blurry.
Tears? …What the hell was going on? I hadn’t cried since grade school! This was just a fling, wasn’t it? I was rich and famous, this was supposed to be just another day at the “office”, but why on earth was I feeling this way? Something wasn’t right; perhaps I had malaria and needed to see a doctor or maybe that was just my brain’s pathetic excuse to help my mind deal with what was going on, what the science people called coping mechanisms kicking in before I had a serious meltdown.
I stood there for a moment trying to make sense of it all. I knew the truth deep down in my guts but I dared not think about it. I had hurt her in every way possible; slept with her best friend, even hit on her sister but still, she forgave me. She had given up her dreams for me and our “relationship”, convinced I was “the one” but I took her love for granted, even laughed and called her a fool with my friends at the bar.
Then it hit me; she was no fool! She saw right through me, she saw me for whom I really was, knew my exact intentions but still stuck with me hoping one day I would love her just as much as she did me. She was the only one that laughed at my terrible jokes, didn’t care about my flaws or anything else in the world as long as she had me. She believed in me, in us. It was starting to make sense now…and I knew exactly what I had to do!
I ran after her, knowing all the things I wanted to say! I was going to hold her, pull her hair away from her beautiful face, wipe her tears and tell her I had been a complete idiot and was sorry, that she was my everything, that her eyes shone like stars and her smile could rule the world, that she was my light and the only thing I needed to pull through my darkest days. Most importantly, tell her I was deeply, hopelessly and insanely in love with her.
I smiled as tears continued to roll down my cheeks. What started as a random fling and a mission to get in her pants, had developed into something I only thought was possible in the movies. I started to run faster now, but what I saw across the street stopped me dead in my tracks.
“No! No!! God, please NO!!!” I screamed! drawing the attentions of a few onlookers, even a few paramedics stopped to stare at me. I slowly made my way to the scene. There had been a horrifying accident and I prayed my Kate was okay, even though I could see her right there on the ground…lying completely still.
I sat at her grave that Saturday, as I usually did every week. I’d sit there for long hours and cry! I’d spent the last 40 years of my life living in complete regret with the same 3 questions on my mind…“WHAT IF I’d been there for her all along?…WHAT IF I hadn’t let her go the day she’d been hit by a drunk driver who hadn’t seen her crossing the road?”
I’d donated my wealth to multiple charities after the accident and lived a modest life. There was no way I was going to enjoy life without her.
WHAT IF “WE” were still alive? was the last and most painful of the 3 questions that haunted me. We’d have grown old together in a big house with beautiful kids. More tears rolled down my cheeks as I got up to leave the cemetery. I’ll never know for sure, as far as I was concerned, my life ended the day Kate died.