I always said I’d go, there’s some things I cannot live with, and I refuse to. Today, I realize I gave up too soon. Which isn't to say I never fought for us; I did, for what felt like years. We overcame many challenges together, and quite frankly, I let a lot go.
How I loved you! I’d strive to make you proud. I changed a lot about me, to keep you happy, even when you didn't ask. To this day when I hear someone say “People don’t change,” I know it isn't true. One day I woke up and no longer recognized the woman looking back at me. The dark circles under her eyes, the swelling in her lids, and only a faint memory of a smile. She wasn’t what you wanted, she wasn't who I wanted to be either. I couldn’t get better there.
Reluctantly, I moved out, heeding the advice of a “friend”. Taking our kids with me, I left you standing there in the long slanted driveway, angry. I cried every day, until the weekend when you came to see the kids. We talked, we shared, and we became friends again— each weekend better than the last. Little by little, we started again. Piece by piece we rebuilt our life. One day you came with roses. Blue ones, red ones, a rainbow colored assortment. Somehow, the smile in your face and the kindness in your heart, brought more light and color to my life than even those roses could provide. I felt happy!
Would I do it again? No. But now there is no need. I was vulnerable then and as I wallowed in my misery, others danced in it. Delighted in watching me wrestle and sometimes fail. In our time apart we learned what we truly wanted and we learned to fight for it, to work for it. We also learned when you allow others into your life they don’t always have your best interest at heart.
This morning, as I read your daily text, I smiled, I never thought it could be this good again. I know I am one of the lucky few. Fortunate to have met you all those years ago in that deserted playground behind our church, pushing your bright eyed little sister on that rusted swing. I am blessed you are prepared to fight beside me, even against my own demons.
There is no one I’d rather go to battle with.
original photo credit: Flickr