living room floor

I kept my winter coat wrapped around me like it would be taken from me. Walking into your house, I could taste the lingering cigarette smoke. When the silence felt suffocating, we tried humor. Finally you asked for what we both knew I would not, perhaps could not, give. My feeling of resolve demanded my attention. I became aware that this time, this meeting, could not be kept afloat from half of myself given to you. I could not offer pieces and call that love. In that moment on the floor of the room where we both built and collapsed it was decided there would be no last time. I took responsibility for my own feelings. I took my healing seriously.

Almost as if we planned it, memories of the last 2 years played before us in the realization that I would no longer fit, these were patterns I could not sustain. I remembered the day you bought this house and we stained the floor and installed a new rug that we now baptize with the remnants of grief. We opened the door, gutted the house and attempted to restore what we could. As I went to leave, I did not look back in your direction. I left the key on the kitchen table. I left us on the living room floor.

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