I woke up in yesterday’s clothes. I pulled my phone from its charger – it’s midnight, creeping into morning. I’m not surprised; I’ve been here before. I notice the kitchen light was left on again. Lazy. I stare at the ceiling, kicking off my shoes; I take my socks off which makes my feet tingle from being on too long. My chest is heavy and I’m breathing minimally. I remind myself to take a deep breath. It doesn’t help and I sink further into the couch. I roll over, hoping the fetal position will shift the weight off and give me comfort. It doesn’t. It’s going to be a long day.
There is no commotion to help pass the time. Nibbles, the family hamster, sucks on the water spout, reminding me I should change his water. My guitar is lonely and I have no interest in it. I exhaust the Candy Crush lives quickly. An anti-anxiety pill would be a blessing if I hadn’t had a problem with prescription meds in the past; it’d be a temporary fix anyway and I need to feel this. The regrets of my decision unfold in my living room. The pain sets in and a cry is in order. My apologies start rolling out into my pillow. God, I am sorry.
It’s 2am and I’ve gone through every justification I could come up with. The conviction I once had, believing I made the right decision to break it off, is becoming less believable. I’m lying to myself. Ifs, ands, buts and whys are obstacles to truth. My instinct is to find evidence to support my claims, protecting myself once again. This should make me feel better, yet I get nothing of substance. All those reasons are merely excuses; all this hurt is self-inflicted; all my sorrow spawned out of the pride that keeps us apart.
By 3am, I have a new set of lives on Candy Crush. I lose them faster than before. I’ve never paid a dollar to this addictive game and I’m starting to see a value in doing so. I want to zone out. I feel shameful and guilty, and it’s a wee bit early to find peace in alcohol; another temporary fix. Speaking of drinking, Nibbles is at his water bottle again, which is more than usual, so I decide it’s time to change his water. I get off the couch finally, disconnecting the water contraption from his cage, and it’s empty. This isn’t helping me feel better. He deserves more from me. Sorry Nibbles.
I broke up with her prematurely, and for the wrong reasons.
Writing is one of the most therapeutic things I can do. It’s not about getting it all out, I can yell at God if I need to do that. Writing provides me with the accountability I need in order to grow. It’d be too easy to say, “I’m not perfect,” and move on with my life, loosely forgiving myself. There is more to me that I haven’t figured out yet. You’re welcome to call it immaturity. You’re welcome to judge me. You’re welcome to say that I’m doing things wrong. What you will never be able to say is that I wasn’t trying. I’m always trying, especially when it comes to being a better person, a better dad, a better man, and yes, sometimes, a better boyfriend.
As much as I love her, I never told her how hurt I was when we split months before. I never told her that I was scared to death to be back with her. I never told her I felt unwanted and unnecessary at times. And stupid me thought that it was so long ago, it doesn’t matter. I tried to sweep it under the rug, thinking the newness of our relationship would concur the past. Time doesn’t heal wounds, sincere forgiveness does.
I wasted the month in anger and resentment. She was trying and I was making her try harder. She was giving, I wasn’t receiving. I felt liked the one that was wronged, something an unforgiving person would do. I was the one that packed. I was the one to find new couches, new beds, a new place to live, new utensils, and new linens. I was the one burdened with these extra expenses. I was the one that’d have to explain to my girls. I was the one that looked like the one that left. I was the one that her family hates. There was nothing she could do to make it right because I was the one that needed to forgive.
It’s the love that we have for each other that has given us the power to forgive wholeheartedly. I needed to really let go of the past, the sadness keeping me awake. Though we’ve had as many breakups as Ross and Rachel, we’ve never stopped trying and we’ve never stopped loving each other, even if it was from a distance.
This Thanksgiving I am thankful for her forgiveness. It means a lot to me, especially after being such a resentful dick. I’m thankful for the trust we share, knowing we both want this to work. I’m thankful that she hasn’t stopped trying, and we somehow, someway, keep finding a way back to each other. I’m thankful that she treats my daughters like her own. I’m thankful that I have the woman of my dreams by my side. I’m thankful for her love, her heart, and though she’ll get Colombian crazy eyes sometimes, I’m thankful they are staring right at me. I’m thankful that she laughs at most of my jokes. I’m thankful that she cares. I’m thankful for her. I’m blessed to have her in my life.
I love her more than I’ve loved any other. I’m thankful she has accepted me back in forgiveness and understanding. I’m proud to call her my woman. She’s the only one I’d want to figure this stuff out with anyway.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving.