I dreamt about you last night.
The two of us next to the fireplace, you lost in your books with your feet on my lap as I massaged them.
Brief moments of silence broken by the crackling fire.
The fireplace bathed the room in an orange glow, the cocoa butter hanging in the air, weaving through the threads of my jumper, colouring me in a scent that would take weeks to get off.
I remember that evening as if it were yesterday and it makes me wish for a do-over.
The dream made me think of the night back at yours after that party so many Christmases ago.
The long drive back, the two of us in the backseat waiting till we could tear the clothes off each other.
I remember sitting by that fireplace and you telling me how natural it felt. I wish I knew what to say then.
I remember holding your body next to mine, breathing you in as we drifted. How I wish to have held you for longer.
That memory, this dream, makes me wish I'd never left the next morning.
I dreamt about you and it caught me by surprise.
It's been years since we’ve spoken. Our last meeting in those simplest of times, our argument, oh how I wish it had been different.
That sure as hell wasn't how I wanted to say goodbye.
I wish I could tell you how much you meant to me,
How much I appreciated every little second you showed up for me; from me sobbing in your car after a hard day's work to making that last year in Dublin that much saner. For every second of your friendship, as annoying as your ass could be.
It would’ve been so much easier if I had been the person I am now then, but hell, I know I wouldn’t be the person I am now if it weren’t for your stubborn being.
I wish we had more time.
If only we'd known how apocalyptic the world would get after that last Wednesday.
I woke up from the dream and it made me think of the drive to the mountains, right after winter. How the words just sat on the tip of my tongue, mere seconds away from being spoken.
"He told me he loves me."
"What did you say?" I asked you.
"That I needed time to think about it."
I wanted to tell you to forget him, that it wouldn’t be worth it, that he was an idea and nothing more. But that wasn’t us.
Selfish gain was never part of the bargain and I knew then that I wasn’t any good to be with.
That wasn’t the right time.
I had my chances. We've both had them and they were chaotic messes every single time.
But how I wish we were then what we have come to be now.
To have met you in the middle just as I could now.
I have a friend, she’s a writer, and has a way with words that far exceeds my own. I dreamt that dream and thought of words that she’d written nearly a year past.
“I could have him for years and still want more. I don’t even remember our first kiss, only the long pause before the tension snapped and we lunged at each other across my bed — we’d been fooling ourselves with that whole “let’s just be friends” thing.” …. “Why am I tracking down Tinder dates and SoHo flings when I already have this man who knows exactly how I want to be kissed? Who knows exactly how I need to be loved? Gently, and without demands.”
Hindsight is a beautiful thing. It’s a fine concoction that betrays memory and colours it with wishful thinking. I can imagine you reading this and thinking to yourself, “He’s glamorizing this.” and yes, I’m guilty of omitting the worst of it.
But t’is the season of love and I grow tired; sharing a bed with strangers, for want of comfort, who leave behind nothing but sweat-soaked sheets and a fresh load for the laundry.
I have swiped aimlessly through the apps since, chasing dreams with strangers yet acutely aware of the time I held something real in my arms.
I could have you for years love, and know that I’d keep coming back for more. I remember our first kiss, I remember our second, I remember every kiss I have shared with you and what a fool I was, to think that there would be more.
Oh, how I wish I could go back to your sheets, to that Wednesday winter morning.
How I wish we'd never left.
The dream caught me by surprise. Perhaps because in those moments of fantasy my unconscious materialised, although briefly, the good of what it could have been. Of what we could have offered if we'd met as strangers having done the work.
Of the warmth on that couch next to the fireplace, lost in our world's yet holding that space together.
Of what could have been, had we met in the middle.
I heard you moved in with Him.
I heard of how happy you were.
It brought a smile to my face.
You deserved someone who loved the living daylights out of you and that was always him.
We had a moment.
A wonderful moment, with its chaos, with a generous measure of hurt.
It made us better people.
You hold a special place in my heart, and you always will.
We had a beautiful moment…
But I wish we’d had so many more.