I’m always the one who loves more… that’s my problem. It is because of this that I stand before you heartbroken. I have joined the millions of Americans who have been hurt by someone they held dear to their heart. I have joined the heartbroken multitude who have suffered from an abusive relationship.
I remember the day I first stumbled upon her. She stood there dumbstruck and barely moved when I passed her by. I wanted to approach her, but I was scared she would simply ignore me. Yet, somehow I managed to muster the courage to approach her. Her response was surprising as she went ballistic and started screaming at me. I wanted to help her so badly, I couldn’t just leave her there.
That was the start of it all.
I would see her every day, eat with her, and spend time with her.
We would stroll about the garden to the lemon tree and dine together. I, on my poulet a la Trois fromage, she on her pâté…. We would greet the morning sun each day, together as one, as our hearts intertwined. For the first time in my life I felt a connection, but it quickly became clear that these feelings were one-sided. She couldn’t possibly have cared for me as I had for her. She was so volatile. One moment I held her in my hands and, in the other, she would scratch me. Her nails would tear across my palms, my cheeks, and my thighs. She would scream like a soulless fiend, a howl as dark as hell. I knew this wasn’t the ideal relationship, but I wanted to help the one person I had developed feelings for.
I was so blinded by these newly found emotions that I justified all the abuse in my head. The abuse was just an effect of her past, and surely she cared for me as well right? She didn’t seem to dislike me and that was enough of a reason for me to attempt to save her.
The first people to discover this relationship were my friends, who disapproved of the bond we had formed. It irritated me that they did not seem to understand. They didn’t understand how happy I was. They just hated that I spent less time with them, I convinced myself of that.
The biggest opposition came from my parents. They could always see the scars on my arms and hands as I came home from school. They warned me to leave her alone. They would say, “Nomas es otra de la Calle!” (She’s just another one from the streets.) But, I refused to listen. They just didn’t understand! Sure I was being scarred…but I was happy. I was, for once in my life, happy.
I had been with her for a year when the unexpected happened. I remember her being more quiet than usual. On this foggy morning, she refused to eat and remained silent as I tried to make her feel better. I was worried she’d do something rash, and I wish I could’ve reacted faster. She broke from my embrace and flew into the street, and it was my turn to stand there dumbstruck. I screamed her name! But as usual, she refused to listen. She was hit by the car, and I knew she was gone. The car made no attempt to stop and, to this day, I remember the license plates. I fell to my knees as I held her in my hands. I held in my hands the lifeless body of my pet cat, Mittens.