So, The Story Goes…

I can’t believe I am retelling this story again.

But, here it goes…

The story is, I was never a reader growing up.  I would rather do than watch which is what reading felt like to me.  I felt reading was passive.  Its’s not that I couldn’t read or read well.

Unfortunately for me, my action orientated mind landed me in a reading-for-the-impaired class when a teacher asked me to read out loud then explain to the class what I had just read.  When I said I couldn’t explain what I had just read, she sent to remedial reading class.  Upon which the first day I was kicked out.

The teacher asked a student to read – I couldn’t believe how low these kids were reading let alone how slow.  This poor kid had a problem reading out-loud a simple word  like – T-H-E – I was so upset with having been placed in this class, I started yelling.  What is wrong with you, You can’t read that word!!!!!!!  The teacher asked me to read next, and I read as fast as I could, I was so upset.  I was told not to come back to that class.

When the teacher asked me to explain what I had just read and told her I couldn’t it was because I was thinking about so many other things other than what I was reading at the same time as I was reading that I wasn’t paying attention to the exact story.  My brain had other ideas in mind other than the science book I was asked to read.

So, I grew up not being a reader until…I became so upset from watching a movie.

Twilight came around and was everywhere.

Ugh, Twilight and vampire, and UGH!

I didn’t want to watch Twilight.  I am too cerebral, interested in culture, the world, and life to care about teenaged vampires!

However, I decided it might not be a bad idea to see why the whole world is in love with Twilight.  I was a care-giver to my mother at the time, so stealing away to go to the movie theater was a big deal at the time.  Sometimes, it was more than six months at a time before I left to go do something just for myself.

I went.  I saw Twilight…I thought, it’s not so bad.  I’ll go see the next movie when it comes out which was New Moon.  I waited and planned for New Moon.

That stupid movie!!!!!

That is how you end a movie with a wedding?!  What?!  Why?!  Ugh?!

I despised the ending!

I was so upset…for days!!!!  I had wasted my money, and  more importantly my precious time.

I tried to figure it out.  I decided there must have been something lost in translation from book to movie and that is why it was so bad.

So, I bought the books.

First book, not bad – easy reading.  Next book, and the next book.  I wanted to read them all because I was enjoying it.

Then, I remembered when he told me we were like Katherine and Heathcliff.  I remember it, but I don’t feel it anymore just like I don’t feel anything anymore.

So, I read Wuthering Heights.

Which brought me to another time when he and I argued over whether it was Anna Karenina or Anna Karen.

So, I read Anna Karenina.

Not, my favorite story, but there was a story beyond Anna Karenina which started in Volume eight.

In volume eight, Tolstoy shares more of a personal essay into what was happening in his life at the time.  For me, it was a profound moment reading volume eight.  My mother had been tiresome during the night.  I was up all night making sure she was ok, and didn’t have any more strokes.  But, this night she was particularly hard on me.  I couldn’t even stay in the room with her.

I had to finish reading this book.

When…with the reading of seven little words, my world changed.

I nearly dropped the book out of my hands.

What?!

What, just happened?!  Why was he at the center of the sentence?!

Memories, the past, all flooded my mind trying to comprehend.

I had loved him more than I had ever loved any other man in my life.  Yet, I had never been able to tell him, or share with him how thankful I was just to have known him.

I felt a connection to him – at the time – I thought, would never end.

Unfortunately, for me…I don’t feel anymore.  I have a complete disconnection from my heart and have been disconnected for years.

However, had I not read Twilight, I would not have read Wuthering Heights, had I not read Wuthering Heights, I would not have read Anna Karenina, had I not read Anna Karenina, I would not have leaned an appreciation for reading and classical literature.

What I Didn’t Understand

Sometimes prayers are answered, but you just don’t understand it at the time.

Praying silently for hours at my mother’s bedside begging God to give her back to me because she was the last person I had left in the world who loved me.  What good is this life without love?

Leaving my mother’s side for a moment, my mind was overcome with pain, hurt, and loss.  Yet, in a moment a name was whispered in my ear.  He had not been a part of my life for years, I brushed that moment aside as soon as it happened because when it came to him I left so much room for doubt.

When we were together it was different – I was different.  Just being near him I was different.  He made me feel alive in ways I can’t explain.  He had a way of turning me on – not just sexually, but parts of me I didn’t believe I had.

However, I was so hurt by him.  I believed he felt the same for me, yet he never spoke of feelings to me.  I believed he was either ashamed or embarrassed to have feelings for such a large woman.  I cannot begin to explain the pain it caused for him not to speak to me, or share his emotions with me.

Years later after our worlds went in separate directions, I tried as best I could to reach out to him.  He closed the door so severely it made it impossible to approach him again.

Perhaps, though what I didn’t understand in the moment when his name was whispered in my ear was that my mother was not the last person in the world I had left who loved me.  Perhaps, he did love me, or perhaps there was a man out there who could and would love me and that was my destiny and my future.  I did not need to spend years of my life caring for her just to have some form of love.

The problems with my father at home were and are so difficult to explain it was hard to believe in any other future other than protecting my mother.

Perhaps, what God was telling me and letting me know – in an answer to my prayer – is he is out there.

Returning home from the hospital my mind was a mess thinking about him while trying to put my life together.  What do I do next?  Thinking of him at the same time, trying to understand why it was his name that came to me.

He has been the strongest connection I’ve ever made.  He was not my first love, or even my friend really, we were just a boy and a girl who went to college together.

We were in a play together.  I was Big Momma and he was Gooper in a Cat On A Hot Tin Roof.  The director stopped and changed direction.  The direction was for me and him to turn at the same time from opposing sides of the stage.  The director said it looked liked incest.  Because I couldn’t help myself when it came to him, I was excited and happy every moment I got to see and be a part of his life.  I remember the turn.  My heart leapt at the sight of him.  It was something I couldn’t control.  It was just pure happiness.

Our last conversation I will not forget.  He and I sitting on the lawn just talking.  He was going one direction in life and I in another.  I knew that would be that.  We said our good-byes.  I walked away.  But, I looked back, I had to look back as we walked away from each other.

I was a mess for months and months afterwards.  It was as if I was in this world, but not apart of this world as my tethering point – which was him – was gone.

Yet, at this moment he has been presented to me as my greatest enemy, killer of all my hopes and dreams, the one person who has brought me to the point of suicide every day for years.

Perhaps he is my enemy with only one wish to destroy and torture me.

I don’t know.  We haven’t spoken to each other for years.  He chooses to not be a part of my life.

But, an answer to my prayer was he is out there.  I just didn’t understand at the time.

25

A realization hit me tonight – it has been more than 25 years since a man has found me attractive enough to ask out on a date.

I mean, I’ve been on a few dates a few years ago, but they were all a set up.  Only a couple of them where ok-looking, but hardly what I found sexually attractive.

I understand I am no great beauty.  I am just an average looking woman.  But, in more than 25 years I have never met another man – other than Michael who wanted me.

Michael was not a good man.  I didn’t understand completely until tonight that was the last man who is ever going to love me.

I just can’t live like this anymore.

I just can’t manage or deal with the stress and isolation of this life any longer.

Especially since I’ve come to understand Michael is the only man who has and will ever love me.

Laughter – Gone

The last time I remember really laughing was at Panera.

A man asked to meet me at Panera.  I was skeptical.  It felt like a set-up  – it was.

I walked into Panera with this man.  I showed up late, dirty hair in a ball cap because I intended to dye it later that evening.  I ate before because I didn’t want to share a meal with this man any longer because I cared nothing for this man.

At Panera, I saw him at a table with other men.  He had closed the door to him so severely, I didn’t go to his table to say, “hi.”  I walked outside without saying anything or even looking at him when I recognized him.

Yet, outside eating with this man I could feel him looking and watching me from the window.  As always when I was around him he turned something on that lit me from inside.

I was hilarious.  I was witty.  I was so funny.  I was improving and throwing out one-liners that would have entertained the entire world.

I knew I was funny.  Not because the man was laughing – I just knew I was funny on a professional level.

What I have learned.  What I understand – I will NEVER be that person again.

My proof is the last few times I’ve met him and been around him.

I’ve turned away.  I’ve not acknowledged him.

He walked by touching my knee at a bar a while ago.  I didn’t speak to him.  I touched his side as I left – that was all.

There was a time I thought I needed to speak to him one last time.  I guess that time is gone.

And with it, my laughter has gone.

 

 

Lost In The Moment

At Panera, which was normally our routine after rehearsals, sitting at a high-top table we over-worked, tired, broke, stressed-out college grown-ups trying to release the dull-drum schedule of work, school, and very little sleep – not necessarily in that order – talking and bull-shitting, would one-off each other.

Somehow the topic became a question of whether or not there could possibly be a limit to the size of a man’s junk.  Is there such a thing as too big?  Certainly there is such a thing as too small, right.  But, too big?!  Is there such a thing?

While the table started to discuss the very worthy question of how big is too big, I recalled I time a man got me drunk on red wine.

My wingman, a girl from work who had been hooking-up (do people still say hooking-up?) with a guy from Turkey (can anyone say Green Card – not to sound bitter, I just found it an unequal match) said, we’ll all go out and have a good time.  Meeting them at his apartment I waited on his sofa while he took a phone call when I arrived.  Most of the conversation took place with him staring at me while speaking Italian on the phone.

Let’s have a drink first, he said when he hung up his phone call.

Sure, what do you have?

He poured me a glass of red wine so sweet from the fruit that was soaking in it, I finished the glass rather quickly.

And then I finished another and another.

Oh, it was so good.

We never made it out that night.

Lying on his bed, tipsy, and wanting more…when I got to unzip his pants – Whoo, Lord have mercy!

It was a beautiful sight to behold.  That man was hung like a baby elephant.  Holy shit!  That was a beautiful creation God made between his legs!

I still recall that moment with stammering wonderment.  It’s a story to tell your grandchildren.  Embarrassing them with the life you lived before them.

So, well equipped with that memory, I blurted out matter-of-factly, yes there can be such a thing as too big because my jaw does not come unhinged!

There was great laughter all around the table, but one person fell back with such laughter he fell to the floor.  It took me a second to realize he was not only laughing so hard he wasn’t making any noise, but he was completely flat on the floor.

Almost immediately I started crying tears of laughter from the beautiful sight of him laughing.  And in that moment an overpowering need took root.  I just wanted to be next to him.  Close to him.  Just to be near him.

In the past I have used laughter as a weapon as a means to unarm people, so I can see people as they really are perhaps even as God meant them to be.

When a person is so gone in the moment from laughing they could pee themselves and not even care, or notice just to have one more breath, so they could laugh again – it is the most beautiful sight to me.  There is a boundless wonder of the human soul and spirit to behold a much greater story to be told in that single moment.

Worn Through

A kind of tired wears on me.  It is not just in the way my drab clothes hang upon my petite frame, exhaustion echoes loudly across my face yelling keep away, I’m worn out.

I’m so sick of traffic.  Anyone else sick of the same old shitty traffic?

I brought home take-out today,  I’ll be able to eat for days off it.  I’m reminded of the days when I took care of my mom.  She would go through times where she would not eat what I fed her.  She never did eat very much,  I would have to bribe her with chocolate or treats in order to get her to take her medicine.  Because if I couldn’t get her to take her medicine, what good was I?

So, I would get take-out just to try to get her to eat.  Honestly, it was always a great deal of work.  I would feel exhausted afterwards, but I felt as if I accomplished something at least.

I would have gotten her up, bathed, and dressed.  Given her a ride, so she was out of the house and out of bed.  She would have walked some instead of lying down in bed.  Then, she would have had some real food.

It wasn’t just the drive and getting out of the house.  She loved people.  She worked with people her whole life, international students, refugees, and children.  All shapes, all sizes, all colors, all ethnicities, she truly loved people.

She would reach for people, talk to strangers even after her strokes she never changed, she never altered.  She loved people and she wanted to make sure they – whomever she came across – knew she loved them.  Maybe it was her belief in God, maybe she was compensating for a lack of love in her own life, maybe she saw something no one else did.  I don’t know, but she loved people.

They say the apple doesn’t fall from the tree, and that’s true.  Sometimes people might find that hard to find in me as it was my job to protect her which sometimes meant asserting a different approach.

It’s a kind of terribleness to no longer have someone to care for.  I’m like a mother without a child, a nurse without a patient, or a solider without a fight.

Given my present circumstances that continue to keep those who know and care about me far, far away, I believe my loss to be unrecoverable.

Once, I went into a store and I thought I would get married there.  I can’t explain that.  Perhaps there was an unfair advantage that persuaded me into believing that story, I’m not sure.  But, I believed it.  And I believed it would help to marry him.

I will cry when I am ready, but not before then.  They will be my tears and no one else’s.  Don’t push your luck, buddy.