The post below is not what this weekend is about memorializing, so first things first. My father was a Lt. Col in the air force reserves. He was active during WWII. This weekend is about remembering those who sacrificed their lives so that we could all continue to enjoy the freedom we are so blessed to have. I know this, and don’t in any way mean to ignore them. Laurel’s post “Tony” (https://myjourneyintodarkness.wordpress.com/) reminded me what it’s about. In fact, she reminded me that I had a long ago friend whose name is engraved on the Viet Nam Memorial in Washington DC. I once found his name there. I didn’t etch it. It was hard enough just to see it. His name was Tony too.
I need readers to know that first, I remember all the fallen heroes. Always.
Memorial Day weekend, though, kind of a bracket for me. It’s when I first understood that my relationship with S had changed, though I didn’t understand why. A 3-day weekend, of which he offered me a “nice afternoon.” And I said, no. I wanted a nice weekend, not an afternoon. He was beginning the process of ripping my heart out and cutting it into pieces. Hard to believe how much I loved him. And how callous and uncaring he was of that gift. It’s been a year of pain, and heartache, and growth.
I also said goodbye to Addie the same weekend. He left on his great adventure with his son, traveling all the way to the other coast, through the northern states, up into Canada, and finally settling in New Mexico. I went to see him before he left, I saw him actually a few times. S had no interest in me then, he was busy with B, though I didn’t know it. Oh S was stringing me along, texting me, talking to me. I was, after all, a good source of supply since I loved him so much. But his interest was focused elsewhere.
Addie was tender and loving and sweet. I wished so much that I could love him. But I can’t do what S did. I’m a one-man woman. Always have been, always will be. And back then….S was the one I loved. We were sitting on Addie’s deck, he turned me to look at him. He said, “I have to tell you this now, because I won’t have another chance. I love you SO much. You have changed my life forever.”
I heard the words from Addie that I wanted to hear from S. Addie asked if we could just lie down together. He just wanted to hold me, once more, he said. I said yes. I needed that closeness. That safety of lying in someone’s arms that wouldn’t hurt me. I was wounded, Addie was a soothing salve on that wound. He reminded me that I had value, that I was lovable, when I most needed to hear it. I let him love me, and I reciprocated as best I could, and be true to myself.
He was there for me every dark day after too. When I finally found out about Betty, Addie spent the day on the phone with me, talking me down. Actually he did this more than once, because the full story of what S had done came to me in pieces. He was my rock. The rock S could never be for anyone, because he’s incapable of loving anyone. Not me, not Betty. Mostly, not himself.
I have not talked to Addie for a long while. He has moved on, found a new love. But last time I talked to him, a couple months ago, he told me he still loves me, will always love me. It’s not in the same way he loves his new woman, but he loves me. I know if I needed to lean on him, I could. But I won’t impose…I have broken his heart enough over S. I will just love Addie.
It made me laugh after, that S complained that I had been cuddling with Addie. While he was bedding down Betty, unknown to me. Seeing her, and lying to me about why he wouldn’t spend the weekend with me. God, he was such a convincing liar.
Yet, still at times, I miss that mischievous grin, and his tall tales, the way he could make me laugh. I just know the price for these things is too high, that it requires a piece of my soul. There is nothing lasting about what comes from him. So…I just learn how to turn it off. To walk away from it. Even though I am much better at it than I used to be, it’s still a work in progress.
Moving to Florida, which has been my plan since before I met him, has turned out to be exactly what I need to do. To get far far away from the memories, the proximity. I know that some of it will remain, but it will be easier to heal from when I have focus of a new life. I’m so grateful that the Universe put this plan in my head and has moved me along with it. I’m so glad that S was unable to change it. Not that he tried. Fact is, he always knew it was my plan. He always knew that I was independent, and relied on myself. There was nothing extraneous in how I loved him. I just loved him. I didn’t need him to live my life, I just wanted him in it. I think a lot of the problem was that he couldn’t believe that, or accept it. That someone could just purely love him with no other need or intent.
I don’t know if he’ll ever understand that. Which is sad.
I guess this is why I wrote the “Benediction for S”. It’s a year later. I’ve grown, I’ve moved along the path I intended. My life is falling into place. I still “know” that in Florida there will be someone for me, who can believe and accept and want….a woman like me, who is capable of loving fully, who is genuinely happy, who wants only the pure, raw, emotion of love.
Someone who will make me forget about loving him, completely.
Today, I’ll move along a little farther on that path. I have to get more paint for my deck. Not a lot. Maybe a quart or two. The deck will be finished today if it stops raining. I’m hopeful that a painted deck will help get an offer on the house.
I’m going to Virginia next weekend, for 5 days. The whole family will be there, both sisters and their families. We’re going to bury my mother’s remains with my father. We will put a little of her ashes in the lake my niece and sis have homes on, because Mom loved it there so much. We will memorialize her, and we will mostly take the love she lavished on all of us, and lavish it on each other.
Feeling blessed this Memorial Day weekend. Blessed by the sacrifices people have made so that I can live a safe, secure life. Blessed that there is love in my life….which never leaves me. It wraps around me like a blanket on a cold winter’s night. I know there are people who have never known that.
Love and light, all….
Note: Picture above is one I took. I think it’s Barn Island, somewhere S took me. Memories…..