Joseph was home for two weeks, as was the norm with this new job. She couldn’t even feel her lack of excitement at his homecoming, as this too was the norm. To be apathetic after almost six years didn’t seem the least bit odd to her. Almost every long-term couple behaved the way they do…
surely this is what happens to love after enough time has passed?
He greets her with a kiss which leaves a certain bitterness on her lips. She purses them together as though to subtly rub his touch away and asks him how his flight was.
“It was long, I missed you.’’
causing her to nod her
He cast her a sideway glance; her disinterest never went unnoticed with him,
“so are you too cool to answer
my messages now?
Or do you just have
a new boyfriend already?”
Her immediate reaction was to sigh of course, as they’ve had this conversation what felt like one thousand times since she started school, which had only been one week ago. But she no longer remained apathetic, instead, rage boiled up within her like a pot overflowing with hot water. She felt all of her frustration with him rise within her and did her best to keep them from spilling out. In six years she had never been unfaithful-
not in high school,
not in university…
not when she took time off to work,
and not even now, as she started college.
It was frustrating to have the same aimless conversation with him when there was no reason to doubt her. Of course she knew he wasn’t doing this because he truly thought she was cheating, he could feel her floating away like a helium filled
b a l l o o n
on a string in the sky.
A string too wild for him to hold.
“Will you stop that?”
She pulled her shoulder away from his touch,
“it’s getting old.”
He tries to laugh it off, holding her tighter to him, not allowing her body to move away from him.
“I’m just kidding.”
This was how conversations went lately. He was away for four weeks at a time. She knew she should miss him…miss him so terribly that it should
a c h e .
She thought perhaps it was her anxiety that got in the way of her affection toward him. Thinking of their most recent messages…
him trying to flirt,
to reach for her,
to have her
but deep down he knows he doesn’t and perhaps he never did.
Every time she shuts him down with either jarring words or with deafening silence,
she feels guilty for not loving him…
and deep down, they both knew this.