No matter how much you’d like it to, it doesn’t happen all at once. It isn’t over after the One Good Cry you allow to yourself. But that’s something you only realize after the One Good Cry happens One, Two, or Three times more.
It comes on unexpectedly. It springs from the timbre of a voice from the other side of the street. Maybe you don’t see it right away but it’s there, curled waiting in the faded corduroy stretched over a stranger’s knee. It will wait til the moment is right, then settle itself around your heart when you’re least prepared to fight. It’s in the words curiously scribbled in upside down handwriting in the books you forgot were not always yours.
It’s recognizing you’ll be going to sleep and waking up alone for a long, long time. It’s knowing that your belly’s never going to be pressed to his again. It’s coming home at night to realize there’s no one to call and nothing to wait for.
The phone won’t ring.
The picture has to go.
You can say it doesn’t hurt, and sometimes, it won’t–but the hurting isn’t over.
And suddenly, strangely, you’re the girl crying on the bus.