You really did it this time. We’ve broken up before but never like this. This is the big one.
Before, I knew you were always at the end of a text, or skype or FB messenger even when I’d blocked you on all those things with stabbing, vicious, angry fingers. I always knew that in a family emergency or if one of the teens needed you, if I really needed you, you would answer the call or the door even when all your instincts were screaming not to.
Remember the time you went to bed after one of our rows and I threw every glass we owned at the coffee table? I had to clear it up the next morning with you laughing at me while making breakfast for two. Our storms were epic and biblical in their force but the morning always brought clear skies.
But you’ve put yourself beyond reach this time, I have no idea where you are. I can’t contact you no matter how dire the emergency.
Since we stopped living together, sometimes you manage to hit my hot buttons so hard a cold white rage arises and I can’t bear to talk to you for weeks.
I’m sure you do it on purpose, just for fun, to see if you still can. It’s another test of my love, my unconditional love, the love I give to my children and then to you, the love you never got from anyone else.
The love that was unwanted initially, the love that was a force of nature for me, that could never be denied or withheld, the love that was totally undeserved according to my family.
When you make me so mad, I want to punish you, to show you, to somehow make you feel a tiny part of what I feel because I know you will never love me like I love you. But you don’t even notice and I only hurt myself.
That first time I said the words out loud, that wonderful summer weekend when we first got closer, lying in your arms on the warm beach as the music and the party and the stars wheeled around us, when the words were finally wrung out of me, you simply said “I know, I know”.
My love is a burden you have carried for years, you didn’t ask for it, you didn’t want it, you didn’t value it until recently, so in the past you have held it casually, carelessly, you put it down roughly, over and over. You only picked it up when you needed it, when your aloneness and independence got too much, even for you.
After a big fight, you always eventually popped up on Skype, usually in the late afternoon or early evening, when the first drink of the evening was warming your heart and you were cooking something delicious for dinner.
You would share a link to a tune, with a song lyric that said what you are thinking, what you couldn’t say, what you can’t say. You left me to puzzle out the meaning if I can. It often made me angry all over again, don’t make me guess, I’d think, just say it, just tell me what you are thinking.
Instead, you told me what you are eating, what you were cooking, what I could have been sharing. If we were talking.
It’s food porn, and you know I can’t resist. This is how we broke our long silences, with redolent tunes and short tasty tales of fine dining for one. You knew that, for me, with my emotionally starved childhood that echoed yours, food is love even when you say it isn’t.
You haven’t been well for a year or so now, the voices that have taken up residence in your head taking charge for long, frightening months at a time. As they ebb and flow in power, with their terrible tales of imagined sin and danger for all, you are alternately pushing me away and clinging so tight but I hang on, I won’t abandon you this time no matter what you say.
After travelling the globe for work, I returned to find you scared and diminished but more loving than I’ve ever seen you. Should I be glad or sad? You moved back into my little house with the bare minimum and we spent our last days working, our evenings cooking, our nights holding hands in the dark. You said you felt safe in my bed, you said it was the only place you felt safe now.
Only last night we were talking about living together again, finally getting those chickens, a dog for me and a cat for you, finding a place where you could grow your own vegetables. We ate a welcome home dinner, a thank you for still loving me dinner, a monkfish and samphire dinner, before I went to bed early, still battling jet lag.
I’ll be up soon, you said. I’ll just finish the wine you said, I’m fine you said.
Then you went for a walk. You left all the lights on and the front door ajar and you walked and you walked and the voices drove you on, over the river and back to your own home where you lay on the floor and your heart stopped and you broke up with me forever.
No goodbye, either in anger or love, no words at all.
Now I feel you everywhere but you are nowhere.
The finality of it is crushing, It holds me down, pins me to the spot, robs me of breath, of hope, of life. You are gone and the word echoes loudly in my head.