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Memories Haunt Me: Will I ever sleep?

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It's 2:24am. Before I know it, my alarm will be going off and it will be time for me to go to work, and yet I still cannot sleep. I lie awake tortured by thoughts of she who is no longer in my life. I miss her so much at times it hurts physically, and the knowledge that we will most likely never again be friends makes it all the more definite. Separated by oceans and continents and time. I remember every detail of her. The husk of her voice, her accent, the way she pronounced certain words, the laid-back drama of her speech. I can hear her voice as if it was just yesterday. Her very Greek gestures. The way she rustled around the flat in floor-length skirts, and how I never saw her feet. Lemon and beans and fish. Always making soup. The way she held a cigarette, inhaled and exhaled the smoke. The cigarette dangling out the side of her mouth, bobbing up and down, animating the rising and falling intensity of her speach. Her slightly crooked smile. Her secrets. The days and nights spent talking and laughing and learning. The other night an obscure movie (a genre we shared a love for) came on television, and I was instantly drawn back to that afternoon when she and I trundled over to the film festival to see it's UK premier. She was entranced, and so was I. It was one of those preciously beautiful shared experiences. I can see her shining face clearly in my mind declaring "I love it" so solemnly as we exited the cinema. Too many details to list, all burned in my memory forever. It's been a few years now. She wasn't there to see me off, and I still wonder why. I couldn't ask why at the time, because part of me feared it was my fault. Due to my unchecked mental illness at the time, it's quite possible that it was. Things were so odd during the last few months, before I had to move away. Several months later she moved too. Her theory is that long-distance friendships don't work, and I wonder if that is why she pulled away towards the end. I know she had other stuff going on too, things I only later learned about by chance, feeling hurt that she never confided in me, and yet knowing that it was her perogative to keep matters private. I just wish she were here, to share tea and conversation and friendship. I wish email could sustain the friendship, but that ship sailed a long time ago. She never replied to my last email and that was over a year ago. I never told her I was in love with her, though I strongly suspect that she knew anyway. She did know that her coming into my life altered it profoundly at the time, I did let her know that much. Circumstances being what they were, there was really no reason to make a big confession of love. She was married (though not living together), we were friends. Her friendship was enough for me, but I still loved her. Though I'm sure we've both changed a lot over the past few years, I think I will always be in love with her, or at least her as she was then. She was the last person I was in love with, and the last person I was close with, and years have gone by. It hurts to know that I don't have that anymore, nothing even close. She's not the only one who haunts my memories, but she's there often and vividly. I would like to know why my brain chooses bed-time to go through these gut-wrenching life reviews. Sleep is needed, and yet part of me revels in the bittersweet beauty of the memories.

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