She hadn't aged at all, still had the perfect body of an 18-year-old, but she had matured emotionally. She had been through enough crap to make her more aware of her effect on others, and she was genuinely apologetic about what she had done and the pain that she had caused. I fell in love with her all over again.
Then it went bad.
I don't want to delve into the painful details, I'll just say that it had a lot of parallels to what actually happened when we broke up, except this time she manipulated me even more. And when it actually happened so long ago, I was suicidal.
Woke up with the echoes of forgotten pain coursing through my body. You know how sometimes when you wake up from a nightmare, the feeling sticks with you into the day?
I don't dare go back to bed.
Part of this was a remembrance of what it was like to be head-over-heels in love. I had blocked a lot of that from my memory, but last night it came back to me, at least for a few moments.
It was glorious.
The pain that followed was excruciating.
Even now as it starts to fade, it stays with me like a ghost in the light of morning, and I wonder why this comes to me now on the eve of a new stage in my life.