“Owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest thing we’ll ever do.” ~ Brene Brown
I must tell you the truth—I never truly wanted you to love me.
I only ever wanted you to love yourself.
It seems that somewhere between our years of “just-can’t-stay-away” passion and friendship that has seen us grow through a lifetime of changes, you still believe that in the end the only thing I was after was to make you fall in love with me.
That all I wanted was to somehow trap you into being in a relationship with me—but that couldn’t be further from the truth.
The only thing that I ever wanted was for you to love yourself.
To learn to love yourself so that you would finally see what I saw every time your eyes met mine.
To love yourself enough to believe in all of your dreams and to see the goodness that radiated from your heart, like a million stars on a midsummer’s night.
It’s not your fault, though, that you made this assumption—nor is it mine that I never found the words to correct the course during the thousands of chances that I had to do just that.
The truth is—maybe we were just doomed from the start.
I feel like in so many ways we set one another up for failure—and I will admit that it is more than half of my fault.
I remember how we approached it like a game when we first began igniting the fires that raged between us.
It was the biggest dare we could take—just how much could we take from the other, before we actually fell in love.
Because we knew, even then, that you weren’t supposed to love me—and I probably shouldn’t fall for a man like you.
We were so damn wrong for each other in all of the ways that didn’t matter, but such a perfect fuckin’ fit in the only ways that really do.
But that didn’t matter—and maybe it still doesn’t.
We said that the first one of us to fall in love was the loser.
Well Hunny, we already know I lost that damn battle in spades, years ago.
But I didn’t really care—and I still don’t.
What I have experienced—and what I feel for you—is completely separate from your understanding of the same situation.
The truth is—I don’t need you to love me.
But I did hope to teach you to love yourself.
To see how rare a man you truly are—and no, it doesn’t matter what the fuck kind of car you drive, nor does it matter if you are still a work-in-progress or not.
Because who you are when you let down those walls and just let your heart light shine is worth more than handfuls of diamonds.
When we first felt that pull to one another, we both were with other people.
People who didn’t see that underneath our tarnished edges, we truly were the most valuable of heirlooms—people who didn’t treat us in the ways that we deserved.
Maybe it was that similarity of never truly having been seen that drew us together to begin with.
But—don’t you know, it broke my heart to see you with women who couldn’t appreciate how amazing you truly are?
I know that you had a slight penchant for drama—if we’re being honest about it—but the way that you would soak yourself into women who didn’t trust you as far as they could throw you and who would make mountains out of mole hills left me wondering:
Is that how you really saw yourself? Did you really think that you deserved all of that chaos and drama?
I only ever wanted you to allow my love to wrap around you like a warm quilt by a winter fire, reminding you that you don’t need to do anything—other than be yourself—in order to be the man that you so desperately wanted to become.
I don’t need you to love me for that to happen.
What I wanted all along was to help you truly see yourself—and with that, to see all that you genuinely deserve from this life.
I don’t know if I am a love or merely a lesson for you—I don’t know if I am a mistake or a soulmate.
But what I do know is that never once did I want you to fall in love with me—because that was the whole point—I didn’t want to make you do anything.
I respect the man that you are too much to ever want that.
And it’s not just the fact that you are a deliciously good man—but it’s your energy.
I don’t know if other women ever saw that same spark that I did, or if they just never appreciated it—but you have a true authentic, beautiful masculine energy about you.
Not because you are over-powering or domineering—just the opposite.
You embrace so many sides, yet can still step up and take control, just when things are about to fall apart.
And whether it’s backward or old-fashioned—if given a woman who could put her total trust in you, there’s no doubt you’d be able to lead her through life and all of its ups and downs.
I sometimes wonder why the women you were with didn’t ever really let you embrace that leader aspect of yourself, as it’s one of your true strengths—but the truth is, I just don’t think they saw that side of you, because they were too busy trying to make you into something that you just weren’t.
The thing is though, that I think you’ve finally gotten there—or are damn close anyway.
Because I see your effort in this life—I see your struggle and I see so much in your eyes. Probably more than you want me to see.
But you’re there—I can tell you finally are starting to see what kind of man you were all along.
So, see—maybe you never had to fall in love with me in order to become the best possible version of yourself.
Maybe all you needed was someone to love you who didn’t need to.
Someone who never minded risking it all for a man she will always believe in.
Because the truth is, I never wanted you to love me—but I did want you to learn to love yourself enough so that you could finally understand exactly why it is that I love you.
And maybe that is the most important lesson of all.
Author: Kate Rose
Editor: Yoli Ramazzina