I stalk you on Facebook. Even though it’s been 8 months. Even though you’re with someone else now. Even though, in the 6 years we were together, I can count on one hand the amount of times I looked at your Facebook profile. I didn’t need to then. You were mine. Your relationship status boldly stating so; my name intertwined with yours.
Now it’s her name next to yours and she’s officially your girlfriend on Facebook. Did you have to do that? Because it felt like a slap in the face. Your profile picture shows the two of you at that lantern festival that was on months ago. You’re smiling. She’s flicking the peace sign. She does that a lot in her photos. Yes, I’ve looked. Doesn’t that get annoying for you? Aren’t you worried that if you ever marry her your wedding photos will be awash with bent legs and peace signs while you stand stoic and silent next to her?
I know you hid me from your newsfeed. Don’t ask me how, but I know. When we first broke up I’d relish the chance to show you what an amazing time I was having with my new friends, how life went on without you, how I could still have fun despite most of the time feeling like my heart was being repeatedly ripped out my chest.
I thought I was over you. I’m not.
I hid you from my newsfeed so that I could select the times at which I wanted to feel like you’d punched me in the gut instead of having it thrust upon me unexpectedly.
But I still find myself looking. I type your name in the search box, watch your page load on my screen and silently pray that your latest update isn’t going to send me into a downward spiral, a panic attack in my bed, a chain of cigarettes smoked on my balcony at 2am.
You don’t update much anymore. Maybe you know that I’m watching. Maybe you don’t want to hurt me with how undeniably happy you are. Either way it’s getting harder and harder to think of you as anything but a stranger. A stranger I used to know better than myself.
Still, I know that you play badminton now. I know that you went out and ate dumplings with a whole new group of friends; friends I know you wouldn’t have met if you weren’t now with her. I know you took an amazing photograph of this city we moved to together. I know you went to a party and wore that shirt I persuaded you to buy when we were in an entirely different country just 12 months ago.
Do you look at my profile and see my life perfectly arranged in statuses and photographs and check-ins? Do you know that I spend most weekends drinking with my friends? Do you read my website when I share links to my latest article? Do you see the photos of me in destinations you haven’t travelled to yet?
Here’s the thing; deep down I’m not as happy as I look in those photographs.
I stalk you on Facebook because I can’t let you go. I can’t reside myself to the fact that you’re not in my life anymore.
So please don’t hit delete. Don’t erase me from your life forever. Don’t cut me off. It’s an unhealthy habit. A habit I’m not ready to lose. A drug I’m not yet ready to go cold-turkey on.
Truth is, I stalk you on Facebook with the f*cked up hope that you miss me enough to stalk me too.