“We don’t get the love we deserve, we get the love we choose.” Zara wrote in my diary with her fingers trembling in the uninvited rains of December 2014. Her hair adorned pearls of raindrops and her eyes always had too much water in them. And those layers of water gave away far too less than I wanted them to. “Happy Birthday,” she said and planted a kiss on my cheeks, leaving faint lipstick marks of the tattered maps to find the meaning of our relationship.
Zara loved someone else. So we always met in rundown cafes of my old town when the weather turned gloomy and the summer skies parted ways for winter clouds. We always walked at arm’s length, talked about lovers that went wrong and longing that went right. We acted like doom is sitting just around the corner, ready to pounce, consume us whole and leave no trail behind.
But for me, the peck on the cheeks doomed everything. I started noticing the poise of her voice, wind in her hair, the softness of her skin, shades of her lipsticks and fragrance of her perfume. She always wore two distinctive fragrance and I always wondered why. So I smoked cigarettes after cigarettes to fill my insides with the smoke of death to drive out the scent of her life.
And I failed miserably. So I asked her out. “I can’t love you. I don’t love your kind,” Zara said and left with harsh words and no maps that lead to her. But I didn’t even try to find her and settled on the notion that I wasn’t the love she wanted.
Today, I saw Zara in the run-down cafe in my old town, pulling a crib with one hand and holding a beautiful woman in another arm. I couldn’t stop smiling at my stupid failure and her beautiful win. “That’s why you always wore two perfumes,” I asked. “That’s why I told you I don’t love your kind,” she laughed.
I took out my old diary and corrected the note Zara wrote 5 years ago. “We don’t get the love we deserve. Neither do we get the love we want. We get the love that deserves us, in whatever shell it may be found,” I wrote.
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