An open letter to the man I used to love

Subject: An open letter to the man I used to love
From: KBB
Date: 4 Aug 2015

"We had a good run".

At least that's the cliche used for things that meet an untimely end for whatever reason.

You might be wondering why I did it. Why I turned away from you that last time? Why I finally walked away and closed the door on "you and I" if I still loved you? After all, there was a point when we were happy. So I have to ask myself the same question ... why did I?

It was never a secret to anyone, especially not to you, how much I adored you. You often held the title of "man candy Monday" on all my social media accounts. I boasted about you and I in photos I tagged you in almost every other day on Facebook. There was the time I left you a scavenger hunt all over your condo that led to a scrapbook I made you amongst other gifts. There was the time I surprised you ... well, there were the "times" I surprised you with random "just because" presents and three-course dinners I spent hours cooking and bought you anything you ever even hinted at wanting.

Hell, I even took us on vacation just because I wanted to get away with you. And the time you took a job in a city four hours away for two months and I spent thousands in gas money driving down and back every single weekend just to see you for a of couple days.

I was always searching for ways to get your attention. To meet your needs. To make your life easier. Your laundry was always washed and folded. The dishes were always done. The house was always clean. You always had food on the table ready and hot when you got off work. The bills stayed paid on time. I always came home on time like I was supposed to. I stayed up many nights long after you went to sleep cooking YOUR meals for the week for work until 1 or 2am complete with labels that read "meal #1, I love you".

You always had lunches packed and clothes out hung up and ready to go when you got up in the mornings. You never had to lift a finger with me ... I guess I was constantly bending over backwards doing all these things for you to try and "earn" some of that affection back. But it was all in vein wasn't it?

Maybe it was because after I had cried to you for the 20th time in almost a year of being together about the fact I felt unappreciated, unloved and like you didn't want people to know about me or us and like you weren't proud of me or our relationship and still nothing changed that I realized it wasn't going to change.

You always promised change. But change never happened. You were what I like to call a "good boyfriend behind closed doors". You would say the things I wanted to hear to me at home. And when it was just us, you were perfect. Maybe that's why I stayed so long. You didn't mind cuddling and kissing me at night as we lay in our bed, but if I asked you why you had never posted a single picture or anything of us or of me on your Facebook after a year together, you got angry. Upset. How dare I ask that! How dare I get upset because I had never once been given anything from you in return for all I did for you! Shame on me for being hurt that I had never received even a card or been cooked a single dinner or surprised in any way with anything ever or posted about on any social media. How dare I after a year of being together want some sort of appreciation back. The nerve I had huh?

So this brings me back to why I finally walked away. I mean, I was absolutely, irrationally, unconditionally, crazy about you. You had me, literally, at your beck and call willing to do anything and everything for you. You said jump, I said how high. All I ever wanted from you was to feel loved and wanted in the way I loved and wanted you. So why didn't I choose you and take you back and go back to "us" when you asked me to after you dumped me and took all your things and moved out as I cried and panicked asking why and begging you to stay? Why did I move on with the "new guy" who came in to my life and choose him over you and decide to close the door on "everything we had" and on our relationship once and for all?

I finally realized that to be appreciated and loved by someone in the way I appreciated and loved you for so long, you have to give it in return. I didn't realize my worth. I didn't realize the value I held and how much one person actually could appreciate me and all the things that I do until I met someone who finally did.

And can I tell you something? It feels good to have the things I do actually acknowledged and recognized and it feels good for the first time in over a year to get cards and "just because" flowers and to see posts about myself on his profile. It feels good to feel appreciated and wanted and needed, not just behind closed doors.

I didn't walk away from us because what we had wasn't real, I walked away from us because what we had wasn't as real to you as it so obviously and face-slappingly was to me.

And no, it isn't because "I didn't love you" either. It's because I loved you too hard. Too intensely. Too much. And you loved me too mediocrely. Too lightly. Not enough.

If you don't keep a fire lit, it'll burn itself out. And I guess that's what happened to me. I was just burnt out.