"I am not the man for you."
Before I can respond, he places a hand on my arm as if to steady himself.
"Don't get me wrong. I wish that I could be the man for you because you are an incredible woman but, I know myself. And I will end up hurting you. Not because I want to but, it is just how I am when it comes to relationships. "
A silence falls between us. I turn away from him to survey the park which is filled with trees and landscaped shrubbery. Out of the corner of my eye, I see that his eyes are misted over. He bends over and gingerly kisses me on the forehead.
For years after this conversation in the park, I will think of him as the love that got away.
Until, I watch a dear friend of mine get her heart ripped out by a man who wasn't good at relationships either. Only in her case, he did not bother to warn her of his remedial relationship skills.
There was no gentle goodbye kiss on the forehead for her. Just a casual goodbye from her Ex via text.
As I listened to her story, I felt a wave of gratitude for the forehead kiss which had saved me from a world of hurt.