When I come into work in the morning, I usually start my day by writing up a little story about my previous day, or my previous couple days. Usually, the stories I tell on a Monday are longer, the storylines more complex, stretching out through the entire weekend. But not today. Today, I don't have one story or one storyline that stretches and winds and dips and bobs over the whole weekend. Too many different things happened this weekend to build a story around. Even as I look back on it now, it all seems… I don't know.
Vicky and I were fighting all weekend long. We've been doing a lot of that. It wasn't the fighting that took only a few minutes and were resolved with "Okay, then I won't eat your Cheerios." It was the kind of fighting that makes you think you're screwed because you're going to break up soon, the kind where the threads of your relationship slip through your fingers like lubed gossamer… if you've ever seen that. It got so bad, Saturday night, that I couldn't even sit in the apartment. I sat out by the pool, smoking Camels, and wondered what on earth I would ever do if I were to lose Vicky. I know what I'd do. I'd join a Buddhist monastery. No joke. And after I went back in, and after I tried and failed (once again) to find a way for us to talk, I went into the guest bedroom and slept a very long time. Depression will do that.
We're better now. As me again tomorrow.
Vicky worries me. She's never been in this kind of relationship before, the kind you cannot let end. All her relationships, from what she's told me, have been ones that haven't really affected her and have certainly not been the kind she thought would be for life. In those kinds of relationships, you can say "Screw you" and go on your merry way. But in this kind, you cannot do either. And there are days when, though I don't think she realizes this, she tries to do both.
We met with Gail this weekend. Gail is the woman who will be officiating our wedding, should it work out that way, and she came over Friday night with Jeff. We all ate a dinner prepared by myself, which was pasta with a sausage, mushroom, and olive sauce. It was very good. Vicky made ceaser salad and heated some garlic bread, which was also very good. It was a nice night. Gail told us how good we looked together and how much in love we both looked. Then, after they'd left, Vicky and I sat down to watch a movie and we sat on different sofas.
I pointed out something similar on Sunday, when Vicky and I sat down to try and find some common ground between us. The problem, I pointed out, observing how far apart we sat, was that there was too much ground between us and requested that we sit together. We did and there were no words - and at that time there didn't need to be.
I once told Vicky that she's the benefit of all I've learned. I have far less pride that I did with Rosa; I won't let things go unsaid. I have a slower temper now, too. On the other hand, she's also the victim of that experience. I take a lot less shit. I love Vicky and will not let this get screwed up.
I take this all very seriously.
After we talked and we had a little lunch, Vicky and I went to a wedding. It was a nice little wedding for some people I know. Not friends, really…and Vicky and I were both wondering, after a while, why we were there. For the life of me, I couldn't say. I felt completely disconnected. I've been feeling that a lot lately; my birthday is in two weeks.
Once we got home, we sat down together and watched Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, a good Jim Carrey film. In summary, it's a film about loving someone so much you just want to forget them - and then realizing how you mustn't. And as I watched this, I felt my chest being torn open until my beating heart lay on my lap. And I cried and cried, thinking not about the movie so much as I was thinking about Rosa. Distracting flashes of memory would flash over on the side of the room, distracting me from the movie. There we were, hiking. There we were in Seattle. There we were buying our home. There we were buying groceries. And I remembered being in my apartment only a few weeks after we'd split up, drinking hard and crying so loud you would have thought I'd broken my leg - no, shattered it. For years, I'd wished that part of me could be expunged. Should the way I lived my life back then have come as a surprise to anyone? This year was only the first when I realized how good those memories are, even the rotten ones. And now, even as they slip with age and daily detail, I try to hold on to them.
We were in Von's Sunday morning. Shopping. Well, not really shopping. We'd actually gone to Von's to fight some more. It was hard to fight, though, because Rosa was there. I kept passing areas where we'd either kissed or, similarly, come to fight. You don't realize you're coming to fight until you get there and realize the fight isn't over and it isn't going to be over so… guess what… And I'd see Vicky and then I'd see Rosa. Vicky. Rosa. Vicky and I had kissed in a few stores... now here we were... fighting...
"You lost Rosa. What are you going to do about Vicky?"
"I don't know."
"Not good enough. You'd better do something."
I got in the car with her and said to her, "I'm absolutely miserable." This didn't help her a lot but it helped me. It helped break through the unspeakable words. You don't say that to someone you're trying to make up with… maybe you say that to someone you're done fighting with. "I give up." It didn't do any good at that point. She was still fighting even if I was done. But we got back home and we did talk and said, "Look at how far apart we're sitting. When did this start?" And she moved closer to me and I moved to her. And I put my arm around her and we kind of held on a bit.