Back when I was 19 I thought that when I fell in love that, of course, it would be forever. Prince Charming would waltz in at some pre-ordained moment, magic would spark and the very air would tingle, and, and, yeah, what a naive putz I was.
So far has not worked out that way. Not by a long shot.
Love, actually, has been as rare as hens’ teeth.
The whole idea of staying in for the long haul is almost unheard of today. Few can barely even seem to manage the short runs. Why commit to anything so final, so definite, so sure? That’s for a naïve putz.
So, I frightened him, you know, the BealArt guy. He came over last Friday, ordered beer in from one of those places you call to deliver, and he sat right here beside me in this new spot I carved out of my little writing space and observed this room, I guess. Maybe for the first time, and he had a glimpse of how I had originally intended the space; not the messy, furry, dusty, cluttered version to which he had grown accustomed to over the last 5 weeks of our reunion.
From that vantage point, he gazed over at that comfortable nest of a bed on yonder wall, and he said; if I sleep there tonight, I think I may just fall in love with you, and that terrifies me.
So he left.
Back to his cluttered, sleep on the cold concrete floor, under construction, condo downtown, left.
Which left me sitting on my stoop those last couple days of October struggling with how I felt about it all.
How on earth do I always manage to fall for the broken ones? The weeds in the cracks? The scarred and hardened ones?
It was as the village began to come awake, sitting out on that stoop late morning of the 31st, staring off into nothing, that I thought…that for the first time since all this began…WHAT THE F*CK am I doing?
And I took a good look. A good, unbiased, look. Not at the details, of which I’d been obsessed, but the BIG picture. The thing staring me right in the face. The thing that I guess I thought was not that big a deal. The one thing that had been there the whole time. The whole reason why he went all sideways at the various, and few and far between, texts I’d sent. Why he went off the handle, said mean things, talked in circles, didn’t listen to what I had to say, and all in all, made him rather annoying. Yes, that thing – alcohol.
He was a drunk; could be a mean drunk. Nasty. Vindictive. Bullying.
You know, I really didn’t see it coming. But as the days turned to weeks, and he went slowly back to his routines, the prevailing element that all aspects of his life revolved, was beer. Not just a few beers after a long day. Nope.
We were a hair’s breath away from falling, and we both caught ourselves. And we both backed away, and I am thankful he did.
I see now that all along that was what he was asking me, with his incessant asking me, what do you want?
I guess he meant…want with a mean drunken dying man. Why would I want such a damaged, broken man? To change? To rescue him from his headlong skid row dive to his finishing line?
Well, he was having none of that. He told me from the very beginning that he was content with his life. Given I guess he had little choice, but he had come to terms with it; his terms, though scarcely recognizable as such to an outsider. His life, his death, his choice on how he chooses to spend what time he has left.
Yet, it was not for naught. Certainly, it didn’t turn out as I would have wished, yet, I gained something. The whole reason I had gone out that night when I ran into him, was because I was feeling confused about what I was doing with my creative spark. What our encounter reminded me of was those days, back before the husband, the deaths, the knock me down flat parts of life, that I had this dream of one-day making money from my ART.
I mean, we all did.
Few of us though have managed to maintain their lifestyle adequately from it, and even fewer ever managed to really do it, like, at all. Few have just thrown caution to the wind and just DID IT.
People come in and out of your life. Some show up for a long time, some for a short run, and some are just reminders. Maybe that’s really all BealArt guy was, just a reminder.
Cause, and this is what I tried to explain to him, I am DOING it. Every single post of this blog, since that first post back on October 26th of 2012, is DOING it. Not for money yet, but, I am DOING something.
And I guess maybe the message the universe had for me, was just simply that. He was never meant to be anything more.
Anyways, what the heck do I want with falling in love with a mean drunk? I am not blawdy daft, and my mamma raised no fool.
Because behind all that pretentious and brilliant mind, is a simple drunk. THAT is what he has become. He says he doesn’t paint or draw now because it rips him apart. The last painting he actually completed was years ago. He opened it for the first time in almost 7 years and showed me it.
Maybe it sounds as though I am romanticizing his intentions, but he knows what he has become. He knows how broken he is, and walking away was the only thing he could do.
I think too, and he said as much the other night he was over, he does not want any reason to regret.
When you know you are no good, and question why someone would ever want to be with the person you have become. When one day you wake up in the hospital, and they tell you that your broken heart is broken for real. When you have widdled away all the people who cared, or you cared for. And one day you walk into your pub, sit down, and there is this woman who was once a girl you knew. And for a while you forget. You forget, and you feel happy. You feel joy.
And… then you remember.
So, you walk away.
Every so often I check my phone. I wipe random thoughts from my mind. I whitewash the wanton memories that wash up and remind myself of what a wanker he was. I remind myself of the things that make me happy. I think how nice it feels to have my solitude back. How simple I had it before he came and spilled his life all over mine.
On that front, I dragged out my old wifi keyboard and mouse, and actually have created a rather poshy little writing nook.
Did I mention that when he first came to my place, the first thing he did was sit down in MY chair? The nerve. Yeah, should have known what the arrogant little asshole would bring into my life.
I wanted more, got less, and walked away with some wisdom.
All in all, that’s not a bad result.
He kept saying those first couple weeks… you LIiiiKKeee ME, you LooOOOOve me… and I did. Though we were intimate, we never really consummated the union, as his failing heart couldn’t handle that stress.
Oh no, I will not fall in love with a mean drunk with a failing heart.
So, what to do, what to do today to keep me busy. Maybe a nice long bike ride, if it doesn’t rain all day. Otherwise, I guess I could do more purging of my inner sanctum. During those days that lead up to our final exchange, I purged 3 full garbage bags of shite. Got rid of stuff kept for no reason, kept for a sentiment that had died. Then cleaned and rearranged the pictures on the walls.
Maybe he thought I was as broken as him, in the beginning. I’ll grant him that. You know, just another crazy hippy chick. But that is not who I am, and now he knows it.
And so do I.