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Thinking of you arouses unbearable guilt in me.

Yes, even as we meet from time to time, as we chat jovially as friends, as we share stories and experiences. I can sense behind your smile that you have veiled off a part of yourself that you once showed me.

I can't bear the thought that I caused you pain because you were perfectly open and honest with me. I like people to be honest with me, and punishing such behaviour is a failing on my part. I responded to your forwardness by shrinking into myself and putting up a barrier, and I can only imagine what a hellishly confusing time you must have had when we were together under that tree on Midsummer. I suppose my only excuse is that I've always been out of touch with myself, and unsure what I really feel toward you (or anyone else for that matter).

I wanted so much to reach out to you, but there was a part of me that could not. There was a sense of panic within me that I couldn't understand. I was afraid of becoming inexorably attached to you and I was afraid of losing you forever. I knew that we were soul mates - our similarity and like-mindedness was quite a freak - and yet I couldn't find it within me to pursue what we both desired, or even to show you that I desired it.

It may seem strange, but it has never even occurred to me that I might be the sort of person people had relationships with. I have always been such an introvert, a loner, and very indecisive and noncommittal to boot. I get on pleasantly with everyone, but am not particularly close to anyone. I have always been afraid that I would prove to have clay feet, or that I would make some fatal mistake. I felt unworthy of being in a relationship with anyone, and especially with you who have shown me such undeserved kindness. It turns out that this was my most fatal mistake of all!

Anyway, you have found someone else now, someone who can stand much stronger than I could. You are happy, and that is a consolation to me. However, it means that I now have no way of explaining everything to you, or healing the rift between us. I must live with the thought that you probably think me hard-hearted and callous, and you probably will never open yourself to me so fully again. It is hard, but I can live with that. The closest thing to atonement that I can offer is to accept the situation and deal tactfully with you in the future. We can still be great friends, and I can live with that too - in fact it's probably the soft option for me. Who knows what the future will bring?

How tempting it is to idealise the road not taken - I'm not even completely certain that being together would have been the best thing for us in the long run. If it is true that all "mistakes" are lessons, then I certainly had an important teaching from this experience, that I would not have had otherwise. I suppose I should be thankful for such a valuable lesson that will improve my character, and teach me to deal with others better.

.


Yes

I finally got your number,
called you, and

we were able to talk

No,

I was not able to reach you

not that night,
not ever

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