"If you feel like it - do write."
So many things to say, yet are any of them of any consequence? To you,
So much anger, so much sorrow, so many things happening to me emotionally
that I'm hardly capable of remaining sane day to day sometimes, much less
expressing myself in a calm, rational and intelligible fashion. Every
few seconds I'm tempted to delete this and not bother, handle it the same
way you apparently handle things. Then I get pissed and want to lash out
and think this might be a good way of doing it. Then I feel sorry for
you since either A) you're really stupid or B) you have a lot of emotional
issues to deal with, or maybe C)
"(sigh), So you're evil, huh?"
"Well, it's always something."
from The Tick
I pause between every few words and am stunned into a momentary coma.
What to say to someone who, for a year, you were utterly in love with,
that left without so much as a phone call, then sends a "hi, things
are great out here." postcard? Something full of frustration, pain,
and anger that will likely get about as much response as all the patience,
care, joy, and love expressed before? Or something shallow and fake, "things
are great here too, glad it's going well, knew you'd make it" in
hopes that maybe someday she'll come to her senses?
It's tough to admit there's no hope of that. I'd reserved some faint glimmer
deep inside, some little thought that I'd run into you someplace and ask
when you were leaving and wish you well, all in an effort to have you
keep me in mind. It became obvious that wasn't going to happen eventually.
I finally broke down and called and you'd already gone.
Which leads me to "she doesn't deserve a response at all" thought
in there too. Sounds like I've a lot of reasons NOT to write and not a
single reason TO.
And I have to wonder if your postcard was just one of many, sent to all
those on this coast dying for a word from you. I wonder all the time just
how much I possibly mean to you.
I don't know WHAT to tell you. I want to ask "What the fuck were
you thinking when you left, not even saying goodbye?" Perfectly appropriate
postcard, black birds and a figure in a heavy coat, flying away.
And "What the hell were you thinking writing me now?" But I
know your answers would give no satisfaction. Back to A) stupid, or B)
crazy, or C) evil.
Should I bother noting "You could have had it all. You could have
been it."? No, probably not. If you haven't figured it out by now,
"you haven't been paying attention", as I've said.
So here's your response - a lot of questions I don't expect to be answered
and am not sure I even want to know, and a few odd quotes and references,
since that is how my brain works.
"Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more; it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
SO I let the part of the letter
up to this point sit for a week. It calls from the back of my mind like
some lost child and I come up with a zillion clever little things to add,
some sad, some happy, some vengeful, some healing, all of which quickly
fade from memory with the mood swings. I talk to a friend about the situation
and fill her in on the majority of the tale. I tell her about the postcard
and she asks "What the hell are you supposed to do with that?"
"Exactly." I respond.
"Are you going to write her?"
"I don't know. I should just pitch it in the trash and let it go."
"You can't do that!"
"But you love her!"
"Yeah, but I gotta protect myself." I think.
Your card was timed perfectly, just when I could get through most days
without thinking of you 'till the lights are out and I'm staring at the
walls of my bedroom. Also two days before Valentine's.
Needless to say, you've been on my mind a lot. There are SO many things
that seem to force you back into my thoughts, without my control. One
that won't go away, so I'll share it in hopes of dulling the effect on
myself, is the Smashing Pumpkin song Thirty-three:
"speak to me in a language I can hear
humor me before I have to go
deep in thought I forgive everyone
as the cluttered streets greet me once again
I know I can't be late, supper's waiting on the table
tomorrow's just an excuse away
so I pull my collar up to face the cold, on my own
the earth laughs beneath my heavy feet
at the blasphemy in my old jangly walk
steeple guide me to my heart and home
the sun is out and up and down again
I know I'll make it, love can last forever
Graceful swans of never topple to the earth
and you can make it last, forever you
you can make it last, forever you
and for a moment I lose myself
wrapped up in the pleasures of the world
I've journeyed here and there and back again
but in the same old haunts I still find my friends"
There's more but that's the best part for this discussion. Every time
that song comes on I get sucked in and feel compelled to listen all the
way through and end up melancholy all day (I don't know why, there are
other songs that remind me of you and I immediately change the channel.)
It doesn't help that it's getting tons of airplay lately. It has SO many
references that remind me of things we share in common. One thing I miss
a lot about our time together was how LONG every day seemed to last. No
doubt it was due in large part to the exploring we did together, Italy
and otherwise, that packed the days with so much that it seemed life would
go on forever. Now that I don't have anyone that seems to give me that
feeling, I feel like time is flying past and I'm doing nothing with it.
No, it's not your fault or responsibility, it's all up to me to get out
there and find someone new, get over it, move on, etc. etc. And I'm working
on it. But the inevitable comparisons come up and everyone seems to fall
short. I've already been told by one that I set my standards too high.
Another issue to hurdle. Couple that with the existential loneliness,
a phrase you coined perfectly, and my natural shyness and things are tough.
Again, my problem.
So I guess the answer is "Yeah, I feel like writing for a variety
of reasons but I can't think of a reply you could send that would be good
If you sent back more "Things are great here." type postcards
I'd always have that nagging "Dammit, wish that had worked out."
pain, reminded with every letter.
If you sent deeper, meaningful true friend stuff with what you were feeling
and such I'd probably get burnt when you told me of the inevitable new
friends, and more, you're making, and how with the passage of time I've
become even less and less significant.
Then there's the ain't-gonna-happen "I fucked up, will you come see
me?" fantasy that would make me really confused, REALLY confused,
and I wouldn't know what to do and would likely suffer through a long
time of "What if..." going through the possibilities only to
decide I need to stay put until I graduate or pay off the Visa bills,
one or the other, and not take another chance on someone who's gotten
ample chances with me already. Then the wonder and confusion of if I've
made the right decision. I don't believe I'll have to worry about that
letter arriving, however. Which leads me to my response, finally.
You fucked up, kid.
Thanks for the card and I'm glad you're doing well. I knew you would.
However, leaving without saying goodbye... That was the final straw, exactly
what I needed to force me to move on. I still love you deeply. How could
I not? I love myself. But I can't be your convenient whatever-you-need-at-the-moment-but-almost-never-anything-more
anymore. Admittedly, in my head, I've made you into someone you're not
but I do know I like you too much to be a casual acquaintance. And I know
I'll always be interested in trying again. If you're ever in town and
you're interested, you can call.