Wednesday, January 11, 2006

It is better to have loved and lost

than to never have loved at all

David's post about his anniversary and the memories of how his marriage had been in the beginning sent my mind drifting down memory lane. It was so sweet to see him write about his wife in such an open and loving way. His is a story shared by many. A sweet love, worn down by the ravages of time and the realities of life. If I could make one wish for David, it would be that his heart will find it's way back to the woman he loved, and I believe still loves. That he will be able to let go of his hurt, his disappointment, and to simply love again. Because there is no greater happiness than two hearts in love. Just ask Carl and Leslie, and Curtis and Ellen.
For so long my heart has been held hostage by my mind. My mind refusing to allow anything to break through the wall protecting the warm inner core of me. Because to love is to hurt.
I know this. I've hurt more than some could ever imagine.
Almost everyone I've ever loved has hurt me. That doesn't make me special. If you open your heart up, you are venerable to pain. One without the other doesn't exist. It simply is what it is. Life is filled with little disappointments, big ones too. It's how we deal with them that makes all the difference.
For a very short time, a long time ago, I knew love. A wonderful love. The kind of love you read about in books. One with those little secret looks that lovers share. Stolen kisses. Hands touching as you pass by one another, no one but the two of you notices, but it happens, that little tingle of excitement. Knowing there's someone who can make the world disappear with just one look. I can remember my heart beating so fast as he held me, in our stolen moments. I remember feeling his heart beating as I pressed against his chest. I remember waking up in the morning filled with excitement knowing I'd be spending the day with him. Even if we couldn't always be next to each other, we were never really apart. I remember his eyes, his smile, the texture of his skin, the way he could make me feel with just one look. I remember the way he loved me. Through his eyes I saw the me I'd only dreamed I could be.
In the end that love almost destroyed me. The agony of having to walk away, to give him up, was tortuous. The reasons were many and all the right ones. No matter that my heart would be [it seemed] irrevocably broken. It was an anguish I swore I'd never know again. The wall was built. My heart protected. My mind the guardian.
Recently I heard a song and all those memories came flooding back. I was listening to the oldies station on the radio(the same one where we heard it the for the first time) and there it was. Such a simple little song. Very old, so old most people today don't even remember it, or haven't ever heard of it. But it was 'our' favorite song. He'd never heard it either, but the first time he did, he said " that's our song". There I was driving down the highway and it came on.

I love how your eyes close whenever you kiss me
And when I'm away from you I love how you miss me
I love the way you always treat me tenderly
But darlin' most of all I love how you love me

I love how your heart beats whenever I hold you
I love how you think of me without being told to
I love the way your touch is always heavenly
But darlin' most of all I love how you love me ...

Oh the pain. The tears fell. I had to pull over and stop. Then the sobs. Gushing, gutwrenching sobs. Sobs I'd held inside of me. Never allowing them to break through. For fear if I ever started crying I'd never stop.
I cried. I cried for the love I lost. Then for the years that followed. And the knowledge that I'd made the wrong choice.
All those right reasons don't seem so right anymore. My children are all grown. Each one has his or her own life. With little time for Mom. The marriage I chose to save, is a shell. One in which two people hide from reality. A marriage built on necessity and shrouded in lies and deceit. This is the greatest pain of all. But it's a pain I must face. A reality I must accept and somehow forgive myself for.
I cannot go back. The hands of time cannot be rewound. It simply is what it is. Life. To err is human, to forgive divine. To forgive oneself, may be the most difficult task of all.
Now, I must find a way to let it go. It won't be easy. Still, this I must do. I'm not so old that love can't find me again. The first step is to allow myself to be open to the possibility. To the possibility of loving again. It could happen. And even if it doesn't it won't be because my heart wasn't willing. Or that my mind stood in the way.
The fear is there. I could get hurt again. But in the end, is it not better to have loved and lost, than to never have loved at all?

[ps: I'd like to thank
Queenie and Michelle, for giving me the courage to write this post.]


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