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Ben Leander Willgruber, MSc.
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My Shortest Love Story

I know that after a relationship ends, the smart thing to do is letting some time pass, let wounds heal and make sure you’re ready for something new. But sometimes, the smart thing to do is not what feels right. 

Skinny Love

Time is such a funny thing. It’s intimidating to think that only a few moments more or less might have changed how things turned out drastically. My last relationship ended towards the end of the Corona quarantine. My ex-boyfriend and I had spent so much time at home, everything felt a little pointless. I didn’t know where I was going and it became clear that he and I weren’t going to share a common future. Realizing this was very painful. It’s not like we suddenly stopped having feelings for each other but rationally we knew that we shouldn’t keep going.

I didn’t feel ready to move on but life had bigger plans than even an overthinker like me can grasp. And so, he and I started to see each other, casually of course. I often felt bad about how fast it was all happening – even though I kept telling myself that I was just ‘going with the flow’ and seeing where life takes me.

The switch

The moment that changed everything was in the park, one of the saddest moments he and I shared, so heart-crushing that even the sky decided it was only appropriate to start raining. He told me that he was going to have to leave the country to finish his studies. Soon. It was ‘all fucked up’ and no one could know what was coming next. It was this moment, however, I realized I wanted to see this through for as long as we could. After this, everything moved faster than before and we created some beautiful moments I will cherish forever.

A break-up without a relationship

We knew that what we had was going to end, and we knew it was gonna end soon. We did our best to ignore the inevitable expiration date that was printed on flight tickets. But every step we came closer to that date, it became a little harder for myself. Towards the end I had shut down my heart for as much as possible and I came to a state of not feeling much about anything, a feeling I know very well and fear at the same time.

I was at a loss with the situation I found myself in and thought I had run out of emotions. The uncertainty made everything even harder, including the beautiful times he and I were still spending with each other. As I am writing this, laying on my bed that still inhabits a faint smell of him, I still don’t know how to feel about it.

The final day

The last day wasn’t drama-free, unfortunately. It also wasn’t alcohol-free and now I do regret not having been sober for our last moments. I wish the day wouldn’t have been sleep-free too, so I wouldn’t have fallen asleep in the taxi to the airport. Even though I was pretty sure my brain had already processed what was about to happen, I was terribly sad when I saw him leave. I watched him go through security, lift his hands for the body check and thought about how I wasn’t gonna be able to touch his strong arms for a while now. I crawled out of the airport and placed my hungover body on the sidewalks where I melted in the sun. I sat there for a while, left something of myself in that very spot, then walked away.

Non-Conclusio

I don’t know what life wants to teach me in all of this. Maybe the lesson is just as simple as this: I am not that important that life wants to teach me anything. Things just happen, and sometimes it’s utter bullshit and you just learn to deal with it.

We can’t really plan anything due to Corona. So, I don’t know what the future holds and if this story will continue or not. I try to be OK with that, but I have a hard time accepting uncertainties and things I have no control over. Perhaps this is what I could learn from all of this: letting go and moving forward, even when I don’t know what’s about to come. Because when I’m truly honest to myself, I never do.

 

Ben

Photos: Kyle Thompson and Cig Harvey
(+ some Inspirational Quotes)

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