I know you'll never read this.
It seems pathetic to be back in the same place, feeling the same things. A lot has changed, and yet so much has remained the same. And a lot has led me back to this place, once again.
I took a job with a youth group this summer. The job provided an opportunity to work with youth away from the nepotism and delegation of the Y. But I didn't choose this program for that sole reason.
I chose this program because it would require me to be back here for a week. Here. I think I did it to test myself, to see how far I've come. To gloat in the face of my own shortcomings and failures. And so far, I have failed that test.
At every turn I've faced a different challenge. Empty benches and buildings are filled with a vivid swirl of memories and feelings that evoke a time when things seemed better. Things that I've since forgotten, or at the very least put in the back of my mind. Away from reality.
My reality has been good to me. I lost a lot of weight. Bought a lot of new clothes. Traded in my depression fueled taste of overpriced running shoes for button ups and neat pants. I had a successful year student teaching, and was the only one in my cohort to be hired to their district. I loved my work, though it was hard. I earned my masters, and made new friends as I did it. I'm going to be teaching geography and history in my community and make real money for the first time in my life. I'm proud of myself and everything that I've accomplished.
But through all that, I have yet to heal. I have healed some, but not enough.
I think I've spent the last two years looking for some great catharsis. Something that will come and give me the closure that I've sought for a long time now. This process -- this test -- has emphasized to me what I've known for a long time. There is no catharsis. My closure will come once I've learned to forgive myself for the misgivings that created this hole in the first place.
It's hard for me to admit when I'm wrong. That's true for the both of us. But between my initial desperation; the long nights spent lying awake, replaying everything back and forth and back again, and my initial resentment of you and your motives, I've come to the grand conclusion that I fucked up. In so many ways. You already know that, and I already knew that. I made excuses, and tried to blame you for them. Circumstances. To convince myself of an injustice, and validate my desperation. There are three sides to the truth, and now its time to acknowledge them. It's been time.
I'm sorry that I ever took you for granted.
I'm sorry that I allowed my insecurities to question the gift that you generously placed upon me.
I'm sorry that I didn't speak, or hold myself accountable. That I didn't seek help sooner. That I didn't address my toxicity in a real way. That I didn't recognize your pain sooner.
I made mistakes, many of which I will never forgive myself for.
I hope that you've moved forward, and done the things that you always wanted to do. I hope that you can read something like this and bask in the glow of knowing that you were right. Or at the very least smirk at the pathetic insistence that I continue to purport. You earned that much.
In the meantime, I will continue to try and be better. To learn from my mistakes and grow into the person that I want to be, for myself and for others. To accept those mistakes that deserve acceptance and address though which deserve action. To love myself in the way that you loved me.
I came to this place expecting closure, but instead I found that closure is built overtime. I hope that this is the beginning -- or the middle? -- of that process. I accept that a part of me, perhaps the most childlike in love, will always belong to you. But its time. It has been for a long while.