The day I realized I deserved better was not any of the 973 days we spent together.
The day I realized I deserved better was not when you sent me a text that still haunts my thoughts. That was the day I tried my hardest to fix the one thing I now know I never could. It was nearly a year ago that I sat in the bathroom of my new apartment at school, pounding the bathroom floor, and questioning why.Why did you do this? Why is this happening? Why now? It was when I looked down at the screen of my phone and saw your words that I wanted to cry. Not the kind of cry you have when you stub your toe.The kind of cry that is just silent, and your heart physically hurts, and at that moment you'd honestly wish you were dead. Even surrounded by the comfort of my friends, I still felt alone and scared, because not only did I lose my boyfriend but my best friend.
The day I realized I deserved better was not when we talked a few weeks later and stayed up on FaceTime, giving me false hope. In the meantime, my roommate was angry and disappointed. Friends didn't understand. "Why are you doing this?" "Stop. He's just going to hurt you more." "You deserve better." I only wish now I would have listened to them then.
The day I realized I deserved better was not when I gave you back your stuff. For months, I would go through the box of memories. Our memories. For months I was just reminded of the day you broke my heart. So with every ounce of sanity I had left in me, I packed up your old sweatshirts, a pair of swimming trunks, your favorite DVD series, and other letters and jewelry I just couldn't keep. I wrote you a little note, wishing you well, and wishing we hadn't come to this. I sent you a text that your stuff would be outside my house and it felt like a weight was lifted off my chest. But still then, I didn't think I deserved better.
The day I realized I deserved better was not when any other guy came around, because trust me. they came. The sad part is, I kept comparing them to you, and no one could have ever matched up. It wasn't when I joined a sorority, and gained the best support system, and felt happy for the first time in years.
The day I realized I deserved better was not the nights when you sent me paragraphs upon paragraphs, and we stayed up for hours talking, and the day I realized I deserved better was not when I saw you for the first time this summer.
The day I realized I finally deserved better was when I received a picture from you. A picture that you knew would hurt me. That would make me 'salty'. Except it didn't. It was a wake-up call. It was then that I realized that our 973 days together didn't matter anymore because after spending nearly 365 days apart, we were and are completely different people. I wish I had listened to my friends sooner and realized I shouldn't want a guy who isn't man enough to dump his girlfriend in person. I wish I would have realized sooner that this is the person you are, and it's who you were, and it was probably who you were always meant to be.
I sat on my bed, staring dumbfounded at this picture that you had sent me. I didn't cry; I didn't get angry. I simply wish I could have gone back a year ago and told myself, "It will be okay. Because you deserve better, and you'll find him."
This day, I finally let you go, and realized I deserve better.