She wasn’t one to have a lot of crushes, but on him, it seemed long overdue. What was not to like about him? A little hinting from their friends was all it took for her to fall for him. And damn it, he was worth the agony!
Theirs wasn’t a perfect relationship from the start. There were month long fights, but both seemed to come back for more. She hated his guts and his overconfidence, and he hated her stupid jokes and boundary issues. She hated his stupid smirk, and he hated that she was so touchy-feely. This ensured a lot of venomous outbursts and tears and foulest kind of languages. She slapped him, and punched him and he gave zero fucks, making her even more agitated. But they got through it all, and grew up to be good friends when all their friends came together to make a group.
Both of them figured the best way out of this was to be friendly, and the slamming of doors and blocking on social media came down, and many frenemies posts and listicles were shared. She started smiling at him often, and he stole glances. And before she knew it, she fell hard.
It was easy, though, wasn’t it? They knew each other well enough, their friends were supportive, they liked the same kind of stuff, and they made memories together now- hanging out together, and eating out together, partying together, and vacationing together. She figured it’d be so easy – but the rational part of her didn’t agree. That part urged her to snap out of it, but the romantic in her fell harder.
So when that big graduation party came, she danced with him, and she got him water and food to get him to sober up. But he didn’t. He downed all sorts of alcohol and was drunk beyond control, so she let him be. But she left early for another party, and that was that.
It started off with bits and pieces. They fell out for a couple of months. She hadn’t any news and she heard he was seeing another girl. So she didn’t bother. She could not be in love with him. So when he shifted cities, and didn’t text her often, she ignored him. She let him go.
The next couple of months were agony. But she got through him cold turkey. The girl rumoured to be with him turned out to be his cousin’s girlfriend, and later fiancé (they lived in the same city, now). But she was finally, finally over him.
And now when he texted, she was glad that she didn’t feel butterflies in her stomach. Now they could be friends without anything attached to it. And when he was back in town, she met with him and let herself lose, knowing full well that she felt absolutely nothing for him.
But then she heard fragments of it. ‘No she doesn’t know’ she overhead him say to that girl she hated the guts of. She knew he was hiding something from her. She tried not to care – it was annoying that she didn’t know something apparently so huge about him. Then she picked on bits and pieces. A month ago, a couple of her other friends changed the topic when she asked what it was about him that they were hiding, and they talked about academics. She asked him later, and he said something about an internship, but she wasn’t stupid, she knew how to pay attention. And she did, and was devastated to hear what had happened.
He had kissed a girl! He had made out with a girl at the same party when she was being that pathetic loser who was crushing on him. There they were dancing for a bit and she dreamt up the name of the fourth dog, and two hours later, he was making out with some other girl!
She felt agitated, and embarrassed about herself and decided that that was that. She wasn’t letting another boy toy with her emotions like that. She felt disgusted, and used, even though it wasn’t her fault. If he couldn’t see what he had when he had it, it wasn’t her fault. And may be that’s part of growing up. Crushing on one of your homies and him shattering your heart, and because he’s such a good friend
can’t tell anyone else, and hence you’re left to mend your broken heart. The boy you like getting drunk and making out with a total stranger at the same party that you’re in. Maybe growing up is realizing who’s just a mayfly and who is a swan. And maybe growing up is learning not to care about that bastard who did nothing but break your heart a thousand times.
And maybe growing up is learning that you deserve the best, and learning not to settle.