Summer is Four White Walls and Air Conditioning (Part 6, Finale)
From the first moment that you let me hide in your library to avoid the embarrassment of sitting alone at lunch hour, I knew we were kindred spirits. I had a crush on you all through high school, but university is where I fell in love. You let me be something different than everyone else let me be. You let me explore and expand in so many directions. You gave me purpose, self-worth, an identity. I was secure within your walls as your student. No one expected me to have it all figured out; I was free to be a work in progress with you. I liked that.
You brought professors into my life that changed my perspectives. Women and men who were looking through cleaner windows than I was. Women and men who knew how to describe all they could see from their windows in a way that I could know. I love you for that. You surrounded me with friends who had eager minds and soft hearts. As classmates we loved each other for all we had in common and for all that was very different.
As it is with all great love stories, I began to plan a future where we would never have to be apart. I shared this plan with everyone, hoping that would make it real. It wasn’t until our last year together that I began to have doubts about our relationship. The day of convocation, after all my family and friends were gone, I just sat alone in my living room for hours trying to absorb the change. I tried to understand what this loss would be like for me.
My love for you is probably why I jumped at the opportunity to be a summer TA. I didn’t want the love story to end. I didn’t want to go back into the world where everyone decided who I was before I had a chance to tell them. In the end, you broke up with me gently, softly. You made it seem like it was my idea. Thank you for doing that.
I don’t miss you. I thought I would, but I don’t. It is time for me to find a new space. I need to learn to trust myself outside of your structure. I love you. I will always love you. I just don’t need you anymore.