photo @anniespratt

photo @anniespratt

To the Ex I never had,

You could have been, but I didn't let you. I couldn't let you. Any of you. So I guess, truly in this case, it wasn’t you. It was me. You were more of an idea than anything else. A scary idea. A nightmare that was meant to exist but never did. Not for me, I wouldn't let you. You didn’t make sense, or you didn’t fit, or it was too complicated, too vulnerable, too soon. It was easier to be alone.

Twenty seven years and I managed to avoid you. All of you. Even when everyone else was doing it, finding Exes like you over and over again, I avoided you. And I was fine. I thrived. I lived for the freedom, the simplicity, and I couldn’t imagine why anyone would want to complicate a good thing like simple just to be with you. Without you, it was just me and my problems. I didn’t have your weight to carry, your burdens to bare. You weren’t there to tell me not to bite my nails when I was nervous, to tell me I was beautiful, to tell me I wasn’t girly enough, to tell me I was cute when I tried to dance, to tell me I made bad jokes at the worst times, to tell me I could make you happy, to tell me my anger would get in my way, to tell me you loved me but it just wasn't working anymore. No highs, no lows, just straight down the middle. Simple. I was alone, and I was fine. I got away from you. It doesn't mean you didn't try, but I knew better. How easy it was to be alone. How easy it was to accept nothing, then to explore and fail. I lived easily in my ignorance, happy in my solitude, comfortable in my routine. But...

Still I wondered.


When? When would you find me? My Ex. The one who makes me think in ways, feel in ways, grow in ways I never thought I could. Would you open me up? Could I open up? Would you help me to experience comfort, jealousy, companionship, loss, betrayal, passion, feelings? Feelings. Would I feel something? Anything that proves I'm alive, normal, able to love or be loved?

I know. I know when I meet you I’ll be naive. I’ll be a weirdo because I've never had an Ex before. I know you'll help me see parts of myself I've never seen, parts I never wanted to see. I know that day will come. That inevitable day where you get in, under my skin, and I’ll be scared. I'll be scared I like it. I'll feel that something, that anything. For the first time I’ll know what it feels like to have you but, just as quickly, for the first time, I’ll know what it feels like to lose you.

Then. I guess.


You’ll be the Ex I never had.

-Charlotte C.


Jessica Salgueiro