Five minutes

She closed the door behind her, walked to her car without a backward glance and drove off immediately.

She wanted to wait. She really wanted to. Pause at the door, maybe not close it all the way. Take small, measured steps. Linger in the car, play with her keys a little bit, keep stealing glances at the slightly ajar door. Drive around the block maybe once or twice, before giving up. But for once she wouldn’t. She wouldn’t put her love before her self-esteem. She wouldn’t let foolish hope overtake her.

She did the honorable thing, the cool thing. She was a cool girl, after all. Tough. Unemotional. Someone who didn’t bother with people. Someone who did what she had to do, said what she thought, and didn’t care what people said. She was unattached.

Unattached, starved for human interaction and contact, yet afraid of it. The irony didn’t escape her, and she was determined to win over irony. That’s how she found the perfect loophole: devoting all her hunger, all she had to give, to the one person who wouldn’t give it back, or even care that they couldn’t. She knew the way to love when you fear closeness and intimacy, when you fear being vulnerable with someone, is to love someone who won’t love you back.

But just for once, just today for five minutes, she wished she wasn’t afraid, she wished she could want what she wanted, she wished they could see her and that would be enough.

It never was. It never would be. And she would never stop trying.