Dear Vittum


Kate Le


“_ ____ ___.” 

You might be the only boy in this world who got me to say those damned words. 

I can’t help but to cringe, and I am slightly disgusted that I once had said that— What the fuck was I thinking? 

— The wreck that we are. 

I can tell you now, no one feels like you do. How am I supposed to accept the way we happened? How did I live before? 

Whenever it rains, I can’t help but to think about that time in the Weed Street parking garage– the time you asked me out. I’ll never be able to look at that place the same. It was magical. Straight out of a movie scene. We were standing on the stairway, taking cover from the violent rain, I haven’t seen a thunderstorm like that in a while– your arms wrapped around mine and we stood facing the moon, you could even hear the city hall clocktower strike ten, and you’re telling me that I somehow wasn’t supposed to fall for you? It’s the way everything aligned, the ambient light, the stumbling of our footing, the tension between us, your warm breath contrasting the bitter cold air– so inviting that my lips landed on yours, and we held each other so close that I could feel your heartbeat against mine– (Man, even the weather was a paid actor) Wasn’t I doomed from the start? Falling for you was no mistake, it was inevitable. 


You were what kept me up at night. I spent countless thoughts on you, to me you were absolutely perfect– and don’t worry, I saw your flaws (I saw the red flags), but it didn’t matter to me. As I was your fool, you were my exception, a perfect pair. And even now I still wish I had the courage to leave with more grace— Is there something wrong with me? 

I remember our first date like it was yesterday. We were on the East side of Marlborough, your territory– on a Ghiloni Park bench closer to the woods, and like us, we were both running late shifts missing the best part of the sunset– golden hour, and settling for the blue twilight. The sky was oddly clear and we talked until the stars peered through, I couldn’t help but to notice it just looked a little empty– We couldn’t find the moon. As you wandered off searching for the moon, I took the opportunity to run through the broken concrete path into the dark oak trees, like as if it was possible to escape the karmic connection we had, and it had only led me back to you. 

Freeing and fleeting, there is something different about the cold in the spring, and although the day was ending the exhilaration felt limitless. I’ll miss the way you called out my name. Do you

remember things the way I do? You wanted to keep the moment between us, you valued those short-lived moments and I valued legacy and longevity. That’s when I knew we wouldn’t work out. 

We were a great story, the nerdy girl and popular guy story troupe, the loud introvert and quiet extrovert, the girl who hadn’t had her first love, and the guy who didn’t plan on getting into a relationship any time soon, we were the best friends to lovers– and most importantly, the kind of couple who would defeat all odds. Did you know less than 2% of high school relationships end up being high school sweethearts? It’s rare— but for some reason, my mind couldn’t help but to somehow believe we’d be an exception. 

If I give you my heart it’s yours to break, and certainly, you did. Is this what I get for being a believer? You broke things off with me. How do you know that you made the right call? And do you ever second guess it? And I don’t even know why I am asking these questions when I know you’ve been moving on– you have literally been with another girl, you are even on Tinder– like, I can’t tell you why I haven’t moved on too. 

I hate myself for it. I miss you so much that I don’t even want to think about it right now. But this is the last time I’ll write about you. Everyone is starting to look like you if I am being honest, and it’s kind of embarrassing that I am even imagining it. Losing my mind for you. 

I loved who I was when I was with you. You made me happy– really happy, Vittum. Everything was better when we were together, everything felt so possible, you gave me hope– taught me how to breathe, how to exist– Quite frankly, I didn’t start living until I fell for you. I cared about you unconditionally, and I hope one day I’ll feel that sort of love. 

Did you feel loved? 

Funny how we both mutually agreed that Dark Red by Steve Lacy was our song, or I at least unofficially declared it to be. It’s still playing in my head as if I was in the passenger seat of your car yesterday. 

Don’t you give me up, please don’t give up 

Honey, I belong with you and only you 

Every time I would listen to the song, I imagine you conveying those words to me. I would make sure that song was queued up on my playlist every Starbucks shift– the cafe stereo blasting Lacy, while I swept the lobby floor. Man, I was on top of the world! It’s so fucking dumb– So. Fucking. Dumb. But it’s the truth. Is this what love does to you? Maybe it’s just what you do to

  1. And the only thing keeping me going every shift was knowing I had a date with you right after. 

You described it better than anyone else, we were “unreal.” How true that was, I was living some kind of fanfiction romance story when I was with you. Nothing can replicate what we were, I know you’ve tried to recreate our intense moments, just to relive it once more but we were irreplaceable. 

I never really felt like your girlfriend, I would always say– 

“Isn’t it shocking?” 

You’d respond with an annoyed grimace 

“That we are together?” 

“There it is. You say this every time we go out.” 

“No, I don’t.” 

“Yes, you do.” 

“But like, it’s so unexpected,” I say in a happy cute tone, trying to charm my argument into you. 

“No, it’s not. We make sense.” 

“What do you mean?” 

“I don’t know how to explain it, we make sense. We just do, Katelyn.” 

I want to know, did you lie every time? A part of me always knew we wouldn’t have made it. You were mine to lose, weren’t you? I— you, for all that I am, and for all that I’ll ever be, I would’ve given you my own life if it meant you would live. I wanted to make plans, and keep up a schedule because I knew we didn’t have enough time together, there never was. I wanted to savor every single moment. Do you get it now? The note on the carnation? I always knew, it was always in the back of my mind. You were never mine but I was very much yours. 

Why must your salvation be my destruction? 

I am in so much pain because of you. Was it hard to imagine a future where you and I were together? You healed me in all the ways a person can be just to shatter my soul all over again, and all I want is for you to build me up again. 

You shook my Mom’s hand, I met your family, you never took off our matching chain, I never stopped holding onto hope, we got each other flowers, we would split the bill, I baked you cookies, we talked for hours, I took you to all my safe places, we were tourists in our home city, I wrote you a love letter, you cheated on me, I forgave you.

And thank you for letting me go, you had to leave me lifeless because you knew it was wrong to stay. I think that was your purpose in my life to be completely honest, it’s tragic but I think you were meant to break my heart. If not you, well then who? You were the perfect person because you cared just enough to leave. I didn’t understand it at the time but I do now, you made the decision I couldn’t. 

And even if it was more of a selfish act— and not as “selfless” as I wish it were to be, my freedom was a byproduct of the breakup. 

Healing hasn’t been linear, I don’t think it’s supposed to be, it’s retrograde. Right, when I think I’ve healed, I really haven’t– you’re not even in my life anymore yet I still find pieces of you wherever I go. I’m in a new city now. It’s the empty parking lots I want to dance in, the scoffed sunset walks, the main street cigarette smell, permanently closed shops, park benches, late-night drives, and the lonely shadow that’s killing me. Would you believe me if I told you I smoked cigarettes? I’m kidding, I don’t– I haven’t changed that much, don’t worry. I’m healing— As much as I care about you, I know I shouldn’t lose myself for you– for anyone. I’m finding myself again. I’m learning how to be happy on my own. 

We’ve been broken up longer than we’ve been together, and it still hurts. Will it ever stop? Time won’t ever explain the depth of our relationship. 

I want to know if what we had was special, I want to know if it was the “once in a lifetime” kind of love, but you don’t really find out until the very end, I just need to live my life and see. Live my life and see. 

But in the meantime– Dream of me, Vittum. 

The one and only, 

Katelyn Le

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