The Privilege of Forgetting You

My greatest hope for you and I, is that you’ll let me forget you. In this life where people come and go, what I desperately want is the opportunity to forget you. I want to finish our last semester of college together. I want to hug you in our caps and gowns and promise to keep in touch. Six months later we’ll remember each other and you’ll rebuke me for neglecting you. We’ll laugh and joke about what terrible friends we’ve been to each other.  As time goes on, the texts will slow. The calls will stop. Life will take me one way, and you another, and we won’t even notice. Five years from now, I want to stop one day and remember your name out of the blue, wonder at how long it’s been since I’ve even thought of you. I want to wonder how your life has gone, and then forget the whole thing again as my life rushes by. Ten years from now, you’ll give me a call, pull me away from the hustle and bustle to remember the times we had, to tell me about the life you’ve lived. I want to hear about the spouse you love more and more with each passing day, and the beautiful children who stole your heart the moment you were blessed with them. I’ll tell you about my triumphs, my heartbreaks, the people I love and the life I’ve built. We’ll hang up with the promise of staying more in contact, but both of us will know that it’ll be another five years before we speak again, if we ever touch base at all. Neither of us will blame the other for drifting apart, because after all, that’s how life works right? Lately, I find myself wishing more and more desperately that someday I’ll have an opportunity to leave you behind as my life moves forward. As I watch you caught up in thoughts of suicide and hopelessness, I wish more than anything that we could just spend our lives weaving in and out of each others thoughts, crossing paths just long enough to marvel at the gifts life has given us both.
          When you call me in the middle of the night, when you tell me that sometimes you just want to die, to end it all, I pray with everything I have that one day I’ll have the privilege of forgetting you. I think of that future for us both, but when you tell me how much easier it would be just to go to sleep and never wake up, I see the living and breathing process of forgetting you snatched away. When you tell me how hopeless everything is, our caps and gowns are replaced by an unmoving black suit, and a  flowing black dress.  Our texts and calls replaced by teary eyed speeches about how brightly you used to shine before you took your life. Instead of fading  fondly into my memory, you’ll turn cold. You’ll be etched in stone in the back of my mind, the latest on a list of too many people whose names I’ll never have the privilege of forgetting.
       I want the best life for you. The naturally sweet pain of loving deeply, and the cutting agony of loss. I want to hear the tearful story of how you buried your parents after their long lives, instead of witnessing their broken down spirits as they lower their own child into the ground. I want to hear you wonder about the girl who got away, instead of wondering if I could have somehow saved your life. I want you to have bad days and good, always knowing in the end that you are beautiful, blessed and loved so dearly. Too often forgetting is a negative, and drifting apart is sad, but I would give anything for even the smallest chance that my life could be spent forgetting you.


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