Rhapsodies of the Barefooted Gypsy

All in a year


January 25, 2012

Dearest Ali,

How was Tahrir? Did you go? I didn’t. I wanted to, but I didn’t know anyone who’s going. So, instead, I stayed home and watched everything on the news. I can only make little sense out of the simple Arabic I know, but from the live feed, it looked as if it was more like a festival if not a fanfare.

That is good, violence is never an answer to this country’s problem, the way bitterness is not the answer to my problem.

I was watching the video of the crowd, they looked like a swarm of ants, and I was wondering if you were there.

It was an uneventful day for me, contrary to the thousands of people at the square. However, reliving the January 25 revolution made me look back at my first year in Egypt. Can you imagine, I’ve already been here for a year and I haven’t thought of fleeing the country yet. I must be crazy, but of course we have already established that from the beginning.

Two heartaches in a year. You, being the most painful last.

When we started seeing each other, I was told by my closest friends that I can’t and shouldn’t date you because you are my ex boyfriend’s twin. But I didn’t listen and all the time I was telling them that you and I have been good friends since we met. I told them how you have always been by my side even when I was still with your brother.

You are that person I run to when Hisham and I were going through a rough time. You are that person I talked to when Hisham and all his friends disappeared.

So, how is it that from a person I always run to, you have now become the person who ran away from me?

Before I flew out of Sydney, we were video chatting and you told me not to be sad because you will be there for me.

It breaks my heart that the fastest those words came out of your lips was the same speed you disappeared.

It’s so ironic that you made me believe and trust in love again and yet you also made me lose hope in it and fear it.

I am bitter. I am mad and angry and upset and sad and broken for what you did.

I am bitter to myself too. I am mad and angry and upset and sad and broken for the sadness and misery I have allowed myself to feel.

I wasn’t aware of it, but throughout the time we were together, I stopped loving myself so I could love you more. I started compromising the things that usually made me happy so I could make you happy. It’s like all of a sudden I locked my pride somewhere, never to be seen again.

It is only now that I am starting to see how our relationship wasn’t healthy at all. Sure, we were in love and had blissful moments and days when everything seemed just perfect, but we exhausted each other, both physically and emotionally.

So, I want to thank you for stepping out of my life before it was too late. I think you actually did me a big favor. Now, I am trying to gather the pieces of me and slowly pull things together.

It will take time before I fully understand what went wrong with us, maybe I won’t even know what went wrong from your side, but everyday is an opportunity for me to get better. Everyday, I am learning that maybe being alone is not that scary after all.