I am so, so sorry. It’s absolutely not you. It’s completely me.
I know this is sudden. I know. God, I know. It’s sudden for me, too. I tried to overcompensate at first. I tried to cover. But something is too different to disguise. Something has shifted tectonically. I can’t pretend it hasn’t.
I have fallen out of love.
But I am not leaving. I will fight for this. For us.
I always hate it when there’s a divorce and the reason is “I’ve fallen out of love.” It seems so halfhearted. Why didn’t you try harder? How could it really just be gone?
But now I think I know.
I met you four years ago, which isn’t that long. It was an intense four years. The fastest moving, most aggressive, most life altering four years of my life. I had known about you before that, and I thought you weren’t my type. Too loud. Too popular. I like the quiet ones. You don’t pause for anyone, you just keep going, always in a hurry. But when we finally came face to face, I was overcome. I thought that maybe you slowed for me. I thought that maybe I could hear you breathing in the whisper of a single, crowded tree. You blinked in the switch of the lights down the avenue. Red to green. And then the whoosh of traffic—a steady stream towards eternity.
You felt both very wise and very fresh. Full of secrets without being particularly secretive. I loved how eclectic and accepting and simultaneously tough you were. Hell, I loved everything about you. I thought I could take the heat. The rush. The strange, busy solitude.
I defended you to your critics. I swore you were the best. Always the best. The only one for me. I was insulted on your behalf. Once, someone accused you of being ugly to me, and I flew into a rage. I pointed out every beautiful part, spitting a fierce, rapid-fire list. How dare they? You were perfect!
But, like I said, something changed. It slipped. And abruptly, I find myself wanting something more. Or just something else. I find myself craving the horizon. I want to know what is behind it and what is beyond that. And so on, until I have gone in a circle around the whole world. Or maybe just halfway. But away. It’s such a big world. It can’t really all be here, inside you.
And you aren’t always nice, you know. You can be so harsh. So competitive. Sometimes you feel superficial. You only care about what’s hot right now. You only care about who is hot right now. You are obsessed with fame. Or at least, it feels that way. You are obsessed with wealth. Bigger is better. You move so quickly– I feel like I can’t keep up. Like I’m not enough. Like I’m always gradually slipping behind until maybe I’ll disappear. I don’t think you’re listening. I don’t think you hear me at all.
I’m not so sure that I need all of the excitement anymore. I feel a little over stimulated. I’m not sure I want to keep up. I woke up one morning and looking around and wondered what we’re all racing towards. I couldn’t see it, because there were so many buildings blocking the distance. I couldn’t see where we’re supposed to be going.
I’m sorry. It feels like such a betrayal. I’m so confused. I don’t want to leave you forever. I just need a break. I just need some time to myself. Seriously. I will come back, if you let me go. I promise. It isn’t over between us. It will probably never really be over between us.
But, and this is the most painful part: when I saw you from above, lying there, so peaceful from there, I looked automatically past you, to see what else there was. I looked towards the ocean. And I wanted to sail away.
I probably shouldn’t have said anything, but I had to tell you. You and I have always been honest with one another. I always knew what I was getting into.
And if it’s any consolation—there are millions of others just like me. Who will sign their souls away for you. Who love you with every breath. You attract that kind of devotion. And rightfully. You are spectacular. You are magnificent. You are stunning. There’s nothing else in the world like you.
But maybe there are other places like me.
I hope that I’ll get to find out.
* * *
Have you ever fall out of love with the place you live in? What did you do?
Unroast: Today I love the way I look in a long skirt. Surprising.
P.S. Bear got one of those Living Social deals for a helicopter tour of NYC. We went on it over the weekend. It was incredible, and in confirmed some of my suspicions about how I’ve been feeling about the city I have loved so intensely for the past four years. I’m not sure what to do.
Other NYC pieces, from before this crazy change of heart thing (which will hopefully pass really soon) happened: What if everyone grows up and leaves me in this city? , Love and Money, Meeting girls on trains, and My first apartment