No you don’t.

Yesterday, I got a random text from a friend. This is the only friend I ever really talk to anymore, outside of the occasional back and forth Facebook comments with other acquaintances. And all that this text said was, “I miss you.”

She sent it to me a little over 24 hours ago. She knows that I am typically someone who can take a very long time to reply to text messages, especially when I’m not doing that well. In fact, I think she can gauge how well I’m doing by how long it takes me to reply. Anyway, that short 3-letter phrase made me feel uncomfortable. I could see it in my notifications because I didn’t open it all day, and it was taunting me because I couldn’t figure out exactly why it made me feel that way. So I finally opened it about 20 minutes ago, if for no other reason than to just make the notification go away. But then, as I felt the emotions crash into and over me like a rollercoaster out of control, I was able to reply. When those emotions hit me it’s like a tidal wave; I can write non-stop. It doesn’t feel like I’m writing words. I don’t SEE words, it’s almost like I can see the colours of emotion, and can paint those coloured emotions in vivid detail. I don’t talk, I paint. She is the only person I’m ever completely honest with, about anything and everything. I feel safe with her because she never judges me and I just feel less awful when she listens. I should mention, I am often that same sounding board for her. I listen without judgment and have helped her through a few things here and there. Sometimes by offering my best advice, sometimes just by offering my ear and my shoulder. After all, isn’t all we really need sometimes is just someone who will listen? Anyway, I did reply. This is what I said:

“I don’t believe that anyone misses me, or thinks about me, or cares much about me at all. Which is ok. The less people care, the less they are around to see my mess. Physical and mental. I think I’m happy. Maybe actually happier than I’ve ever been. I used to worry so much that I needed someone to want me, or need me. I couldn’t handle the feelings of abandonment so I struggled to make every effort to avoid it, even though it was the way I am that pushed people away in the first place. I guess I’ve embraced those feelings in a way. I’ve accepted that I am better off alone, and I am much more stable and much happier feeling so stable. And I know my walls are sky high. I struggle with that idea that you miss me. It just feels like words. Strange, unfamiliar, empty words. I don’t mean that as an insult to you whatsoever. I think people just say it because it’s nice to say it. Maybe some people like to hear it. Actually, I think most people probably do. I know it’s me. I have no idea how to accept it as any sort of truth. I’m not someone to miss, I’m someone to forget. Everybody does.”

Talk about whining. Just rereading my own words makes me feel a bit nauseous. Pity party to the extreme. But…. these thoughts aren’t at the forefront. I don’t dwell on that nonsense, I’m just living my life right now. Stable. Happy with my kids. Trying to get my house ready to sell (it’s very hard to do by yourself when it’s full of 10 years of clutter and depression). Focused on getting myself into university in September. I’m fine. Really. Indeed I have accepted the way that I am. Fears of abandonment? Well that’s easy to solve… don’t give anyone a chance to leave by not letting anyone close in the first place. And it’s funny. I’ve cut everyone out, and it’s gone entirely unnoticed. There were only two friends that I kept in my life because I believed those two to truly be forever friends, one of them being the friend who texted me yesterday. The other one met a guy and was quick to abandon me anyway lol. I can only laugh. I don’t even care anymore. I’ve become so jaded and completely numb to it that it just rolls off my back. And guess what? I am not missed. Nobody calls or texts. Every single message of, “I miss you let’s get together this week”, end with weeks going by and it not happening. And no, it’s not from a lack of effort on my part. I do send that follow-up message saying, how about this week? And I am met with, “well, I’m busy on Tuesday because of this, and Thursday and Friday are out because of that”, and even after my reply of, “sounds like Monday or Wednesday are our days!”, with a happy, smiley face…. nothing. It’s been read (thank you, Facebook Messenger, for that slap in the face). No response. Even my own sister (I have 3) has defaulted on plans to get together. 4 weeks ago. No mentioned of it again. Ara, you are forgettable.

I mean, fuck it. Honestly. Who cares anymore. I’m not worth the effort, they’re not worth the effort (except my sister). I hate words. HATE words. They’re only letters, picked out of the alphabet that, when strung together, make certain sounds and pass lips into ears. Sometimes, like me, they pass my lips into empty walls and my own palms.

If a girl falls in the forest, but nobody is around to hear it, does she make a sound?

The letters that make up the words, “I miss you”, are weightless. I don’t feel anything when I hear them. You miss me?

No you don’t.

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