When I first met him, I thought he was quite perfect. Then I saw the imperfections, the ones I saw within myself, and realized something. I think we’re driving around this life in unmarked cars, where nobody knows who is inside or what contents or additional passengers the driver has on board. All we have to do is glance in the windows of passing vehicles, when they pause at the stop sign, to discover the baggage they possess, before they go about their journey once more. You’re left to guess their destination unless they unlock the doors and allow you to climb inside, along for the ride. And that’s when you hear the private commotion, coming from the trunk as you happily meander down the carpool lane.
I glanced at him for just a second. Just that right second. I saw the vulnerability, the lost little boy look that he tried so desperately to hide from the world all the time. It was recognizable, because it was so dejected, so bruised, so reflective of the way I felt inside too. But then he caught me looking at him curiously and it immediately shut down into a look of a hardened, almost bitter man who carried the weight of the entire world on his shoulders. Oh I knew that feeling well too. I just didn’t understand why he felt he needed to do that with me, the hiding. I thought we were past all of that and I thought we were more, meant more to each other. Somewhere along the line, I must have misinterpreted something, a something that had changed and I wasn’t informed. We were light and love and life, until I spoke the words he didn’t expect to hear from me. How could he not expect it though? I did. I simply did. I loved him and I’m a true believer that life is too short not to share those words when they are truly felt. Why hold back love? I just shrugged and moved on when it was honestly the last thing I wanted to do. Then again, as a woman, I’m a talker. Men just don’t have the right words at the right time. Yet I’m supposed to understand that in the heat of an emotional moment.
Please don’t hurt me, I begged. You hurt me first, he said.
I didn’t mean to. All I wanted to do is see that heart you try to hard to hide. That heart that you never let anyone see on the inside. And so I start to do the same thing and mirror what you give me. Back and forth. Words unsaid, just communicated with the eyes and hands. And the physical can lie, but the eyes show the truth. They betray the things we think we aren’t ready to say. I’ve wasted way too much time already with the people who doubt their own place in my life.
I get so tired of putting a face on for the whole world sometimes. I truly do. I just want someone who will let me scream about the unfairness, beat the crap out of the world to them, and then hold me as I sort it all out for myself, with a few words of wisdom thrown in. Yet, I’m an “advice” giver and a spiritual guide that truly believes when people meet it’s for a reason outside of themselves. I also haven’t seemed to learn the lesson of saying less, when I can’t quite find the right thing to say, thinking more is the solution. I also realize, I’m not always right. There’s only one question I want the truthful answer to. What are we to each other? Truly? And why are you so damn afraid to admit it?
Sometimes I just want to scream at you, yell at you… take my fists and beat them against you until I’m exhausted and you take me to bed to soothe the things that cause the tears to stream steadily down my face. How hard can that be, you vicious lover? You don’t care. Greedy little bastard. The anger at you starts to choke me.
And then I see that look one more time. In my mind’s eye. And I realize you’re two different people. My knack for seeing the vulnerable, beautiful little person inside each and every person I love, it kills me sometimes. I see those hopes and dreams that you once had, I see how the past has shattered them, shoved them back together in some crazy fashion, and sucked all the life out while you try to desperately create a new dream. Success and failure can make bitches of us all sometimes, though. It’s that driving force that keeps us at a distance, keeps us from really believing we deserve happiness with another. That little boy, that little girl, is so afraid now. Where once we had optimism and a naive sense of hope, we now have nothing but an aggressive will to survive and to out do, instead of working together to love each other through the beat downs of the rest of this world. Self preservation becomes the trump card that keeps us from getting hurt, where a little compassion, trust, and love toward each other could go so much further. There’s enough hatred and bitterness, enough argument, enough anger from the rest of the world to make us self doubt, to help us lose the something that we can’t replace. I don’t want to fix you, and yet I do. We both need fixing. We’ve been broken for far too long to let it all stay in a sense of disarray, of disrepair.
Do you know what I want? What I think you want? Someone that we can be real with in the dark. Where the sad times just become comfortable silence, and the happy times become private laughter and tickles, sunshine, hot and heavy passion that stays within the confines of an impenetrable castle and kingdom we built for two. I want the end of the day to be a reprieve and retreat, a salve that repairs the slices and dices from the daily chopping block and grind, that leaves us feeling a sense of contentment, wonderment, and spiritual happiness.
Ah that word, happiness. Something that is so difficult to obtain. It requires putting our own needs to the side to help someone else discover who they are, helping them see that someone has faith and believes in them. Our own happiness is always reliant on the happiness of those we love. As much as we like to believe it isn’t so, there is something to be said for creating happiness and it coming back to you. Karma, if you will. So, in that way, in an intimate relationship, the give and take, is even more important than it is in friendship or mere acquaintance.
I just wish I had learned that lesson much earlier. Everyone sees giving as something completely different, and everyone has a different need, a different level of take.
Right now, in the moment, I just want to behold and be held. And forget that the past even exists.
Song of the day: Kiss Me by Ed Sheeran
Photo of the day- Icicles… part of my collection of photos that remind me just how fragile, beautiful, and temporary everything can be