I ended my previous post, a month ago with this paragraph: “How could I not reach out my hand to touch this preposterous bead? It feels as if the ineffable quality that oversees the wonders and ways of the world is presenting me with the most precious bead of plenty—a bead that grows to encompass all manner of well-being, fuzzy and infinite.”
The bead that I was referring to is a man with whom, 28 years ago, I would walk along the daytime and nighttime streets of Manhattan (and one bridge to Brooklyn in a blizzard) being the most open I had ever been with anyone. This man suddenly appeared in my in-box from where he has since snuggled his way into that space I didn’t know existed: a heart untrammeled.
When I started this blog in April 2008, I needed an outlet from all the pain I was experiencing from another man I met 28 years ago: my ex-husband. (Speak about making the wrong choice!) When I began the divorce proceedings four years before that, it was not to clear my decks for another man or even—utterly preposterous—the idea of love; rather, it was to come up for air. For too long I had been stifled: stifled by him and stifled by myself in reaction to him. And the blog, well, I needed to figure out how to breathe again.
First I just poured out in pain. I was seeking to find solace in the opening up, in the discovery of shared pain, in the offering of words of wisdom from survivors, in the providing of comfort to those who only had pain. And then, once I began to find my breathe and my voice, I found that I didn’t just reside in pain. I found that I could write—and think—about things that did not revolve around my life and its downs and occasional ups. I would write about all manner of thing. I liked to think of myself as a columnist (note: I would love to be a columnist) sharing my point-of-view and insights. But always, always there was some new anguish from my ex-husband that I needed to screech out. And now, well it still happens because he has not changed, but I don’t want to dwell on it, I want to acknowledge it and return to the path that my life has taken.
I am, for a moment, without words. Not just that I never thought I would be so fulfilled from a man’s attentions, but that I honestly did not expect more than a freedom of self when I began the divorce journey and the blog journey. Who knows what is beyond, yonder on the horizon, but I know what is not there. What is not there is the pain that has been transcribed here.
In a telling reflection that life is never flawless, this man lives abroad. I will be visiting him for a few days in six weeks—the countdown is on. But when you have two writers unfolding their hearts to and for the other, it is a thing of transcendent beauty. My inbox surely runneth over.
My words, and my thoughts, and my creativity, I have begun to channel to this man as well as to the new book that I have started writing. And so, I guess, I am saying goodbye. Or maybe, because goodbye seems so final and hard, I am saying that when and if I return it will not be as a woman discovering a recipe for lemonade to use the lemons her life dropped into her basket, but it will be as a woman who has recipes for cakes and soups, the sustenance of life. Or maybe I won’t have any recipes to share, just stories that show it is possible to go from the depths of the tunnel where no light can penetrate, to a place that feels darn close to Everest.