Thursday, November 12, 2009

Farewell, M

"In life, as in art, some endings are bittersweet. Especially when it comes to love."

It is the month of November. The year is almost over and with it, my life as I know it. They say some endings take a long time to complete, but when they do, you just can't ignore them. The season is about to end, and I have but one final episode to play.

Manuel is leaving this Saturday. We will meet tomorrow, our first and last meeting since we broke up three months ago. Three months, I told myself. Has it been that long? Nothing can stop the relentless march of time, it seems.

M and I agreed we won't communicate after he leaves. I have rehearsed the things I wanted to tell him and practiced the scene in my head.

The Scene

K: "I want to thank you for inviting me to see you before you leave, for the time spent with you. It means a lot to me. I always thought we deserved a better ending.

At first, I wanted to tell you I will wait for you. But I won't, because it is not fair to you or to me. I want you to be free to decide who you want to be and what you want to become without feeling beholden to me or guilty about me. On my end, I also want to open myself up to possibilities of love.

But, one day, if you finally figure out what you want, and you suddenly remember me, I hope you won't hesitate to call. I am happy for you and I will miss you."

I handed him a small envelope containing three things: my letter for his birthday, a photo of us captured during our happier times, and a letter for his leaving.

K: Open this only when you feel you are at one of the lowest point of your life.

This is what I wrote. I don't know when he will read it. It could be three months from now, or six, or never.

Nov. 11, 2009

Dearest M,

I'm writing this letter to you as you leave for the U.S. and I told you to open this only in the moment of your greatest despair. I know you go away with the burden of not knowing how things will work out for you, and I know that the only person who can ever take it off is you.

"I am a work in progress," as you told me this week.

I don't know the circumstances you face right now but don't give up, M. The only thing we really need is one person who loves us and believes in us and you have him. I know you are a good person, and that you will triumph over these challenges.

I will wait for you, always. I love you, K.

After he goes, I will leave things to the hands of fate. Throw it up high, high into the air. If we will see each other, then we will. If not, then so be it.

I told M he was my first great love. And from what I heard, we are allotted only a few in a lifetime. I guessed I have used up my first slot.

I never thought emotions like this could exist. These mind blowing, heart wrenching, intense feelings you thought only happened in movies. I will miss M. He is gone, and I may never see him again.

I wonder what the future will bring. In a city that never sleeps, something is always brewing. And let me guess, it probably will start with boy meets boy …

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Hush, Hush: This Too Shall Pass

Shakespeare once said: "All's well that ends well." But sometimes, it just … ends.


It seems you have joined/are joining the ranks of people ending relationships. What can I say that you don't already know? There are times when words are useless, no matter how well-meaning they are.

We try to manage loss and staunch grief, but perhaps these emotions are based on false assumptions. Our lovers will be there indefinitely, and that is what happiness is based on. When in fact, most of them leave, sooner or later.

So what is there to hope about? And I'm not sure what the answer is. Some people have resorted to living in a series of authentic moments, rather than hope for an everlasting love.

But deep down, everyone wants love, the kind that stretches beyond your horizon. The kind than transcends, not only space and time, but even our own mortality, even death.

But we don't know if we will have that, or when, or with who. And as we grow older, we start to surrender to the idea that maybe some aren't meant for that kind of love. People who have lost two husbands, and a parent, or a child, have a deeper understanding and acceptance of the mysteries of life. But you aren't there yet. I'm not there yet. You can't expect to be. We're too young, not yet close to philosophical. You want him to change, to love you again, and we have to hope that happens. And also … also prepare as much as we can for the possibility that he might not.

We talk to our friends, read books, in our search to understand what happened, and how to change things. But there are things books don't say. There are some terrible times when knowledge isn't power, when being sane or intelligent won't save you. You are standing in the middle of the night in an arctic sea on a flaming ship that's exploded. Maybe I can help. We are going to try. But perhaps all I can do in this moment is make you feel slightly less alone on a burning deck.