~a/n~

I'm proud of being able to write about this. I'm proud of myself for having grown and learned from my past. I'm even proud of myself for getting over past events. If anyone is reading this, and has gone through or is going through a bad relationship, I am proud of you too. Maybe it seems like there isn't anything for me to be proud of, but trust me, everyone. You will get stronger. You will shake the stars one day. I have felt the pain, and I have gotten over the pain. The same will happen to you. This isn't my best piece of writing, but it is the most honest one.

For those who shake the stars, and for my bestest friend who helped me live again, this is for you.

~Mo

I sit down at my desk. I pull out a pencil and a few pieces of paper. I picture us smiling, laughing, joking. I picture you staying happy, innocent, and, well, yourself forever. Then, I remember my own memories. I remember red, bloodshot eyes. I remember how he shook with rage. I remember my best friend dragging me away, fearful of what he had become, fearful that he would reach out at hit me. I remember how we ended later that very same day. Gratitude filled me, pushing aside my pain. I want you to live a great life, without the pain I live with. Words filled the page.

To my bestest friend.

This is usually the part in my stories where the flashback occurs. Our heroine remembers an obscure, yet traumatic, event in her past that becomes the problem she must tackle throughout the story. This time it'll be different because you already know the traumatic events that come back to haunt me.

So, I will dive right into my message.

Darling, what I went through is something that I do not ever want happening to you. I do not want you to fall in love with pretty words and seemingly generous actions.

I do not want those pretty words to be the reason why you stay with someone who doesn't treat you with respect or love.

I do not want those generous actions to cause you to think that "this is just a phase that I can help them out of."

I do not want you to fall in love with someone who continues to hurt you.

I do not want you to shy away from doing what needs to be done because you love someone.

I could spill out tons of advice on the warning signs, but you're a smart girl. A lot smarter than me. I fell for the pretty words and seemingly generous actions. I don't think that'll happen to you.

But at the same time, I didn't think it would ever happen to me.

I'm going to talk about my wishes. Three wishes, because three is a magical number, and there were three wishes in the movie "Aladdin," so I'm following the history.

Rules: You can't wish to kill somebody. You can't wish for someone to fall in love with you. You can't wish for someone dead to be brought back to life.

My first thought for a wish was to go back to last summer, 30 July 2017. I finally texted him after a month and a half of ignoring him. I wish I could go back to that day, which I spent crying in bed and screaming at my parents (who were only trying to help) and clawing at myself to try to get the ache out out OUT. I wish I would go back to that day and give myself a hug. I would tell myself that I had to stop blaming myself for what happened. That I shouldn't go running to him because it hurt. It hurt like I got run over by a bus over and over until the ache sat in my bones and my lungs. I'd say, "I come from the future, and in the future, because you texted him, everything becomes twenty times worse for you. Temporary relief will bring you more pain."

I would go back and say "the future looks really good without him in it. Don't sell yourself a penny short of what you're worth."

My second wish wouldn't really be necessary if I made the first wish. If it ended there, and I got over him that summer, I would get to live my sophomore year being happy and free and, who knows, maybe I would meet someone else.

Say the first wish didn't work. Then my second wish would be for help.

There are so many ways people describe heartbreak. It's true, by the way . . . you do feel physical pain in your heart. It's like when you're sore, and when you walk the pain of the soreness spreads all through your muscles. That's what my heart feels like, every beat a melody of pain. I feel it in my lungs, where it seems like every breath is a conscious decision. A conscious decision that slowly drives me to think, "don't you wish that you could just stop breathing?" Sleeping is rough. No nightmares, but I lay awake for a while, dreaming and hoping, then reality comes smashing in. It's like a whole different level of pain. My bones hurt. They know what they lost, just as much as I do. My brain is the only part of me that knows why leaving was a better decision. Even then, it doesn't know that all the time.

I would wish for something to make me feel better. Happiness comes to me, of course, but I wish for something permanent. Something that will . . . heal me. Make me move on. Make the pain fade away, make the wounds scars, make me whole again.

My third wish is something you can't tell me anything about for certain. I swore to never date again, and at the time I meant it with my whole entire heart. Today, I finished watching "The Princess and the Frog," (yes, I know, another Disney movie reference) and it made me unbelievably sad. She found true love.

I wanted it, I thought, as I turned off the TV. I wanted to find someone who would make me happy. Someone fabulously kind, truly selfless, and understanding. Someone whose dream it is to be with me.

That's clearly the hopeless romantic side of me talking, but I felt it. In my heart, I knew that I wanted a fairy tale ending. I got to wondering, then . . . is true love only in fairy tales? It seems like only the fantasy Disney movies, or any other clearly made-up movie, have the true love I wanted.

My third wish is to know if true love really does exist in this world. On Earth, not on some alien planet. If it does really exist, will I ever have it? Or did I have it, and lose it?

~Mo