We’re at the airport, I hate airports. They are a source of awkward greetings and tearful farewells. This time it is a farewell. My mind is scattered in so many directions, but all I want is to stay here with her. It feels like I’ve only just arrived, but I have to go.
Getting my boarding pass and checking luggage is just a pain; it distracts and takes away from dwindling precious moments physically in her presence. It all makes me so stressed. I just want to reel my head back and scream from the depths of my guts, but one doesn’t scream in airports these days so I hold it in and smile. I turn that energy into jokes to lighten the mood.
My bags are checked now; we have even less time and I can’t seem to forget that. We sit on a bench and enjoy each other’s company while having some lunch, but I know the worst is coming. I can feel myself slowly numbing to the coming pain. Then suddenly, here we are at the moment.
We’re standing at the base of the stairs that she can’t follow me up. They lead to security and then to my gate. She is the love of my life and the light that brings beauty to my world, all I want to do is stay here with her. But, all I can do is kiss her goodbye and walk up those stairs. We hold each other, kiss each other, tell each other how much we love, she cries. I can’t. She thinks I put on my soldiers face to support her, but in truth it’s for me. If I don’t shut out the pain I’ll never make it up the stairs. I feel horrible. I want her to see what I feel, but it’s too much to handle in the moment. We say “see you soon” and part.
I walk up the stairs, on the verge of breaking down. At the top I turn and mouth the words “I love you”, as I blow her a kiss. She’s only twenty meters away but already it feels like an ocean. I keep her in my sight as long as I can. I stride towards the security checkpoint, never taking my eyes off of hers. It’s a constant fight to just out one foot in front of the other, because if I stop I don’t have the strength to get going again. She passes out my sight. I can’t help it, under my breath I mutter, “Fuck…” Other passengers around me hear and take a step away. I didn’t mean to startle them, but I couldn’t help it. I hate airports.