C— was, at that time of my short, short life, the love of that short, short life.
With the bedlam that is adolescence and youth it is almost obvious, a story written and told and done many a time over, that it wasn’t going to last. Stubbornness, from both of us, of the clenched-jutted-jaw type, meant that very little could flourish. We were two stone walls, wind-buffeted granite cliffs, facing each other, and the tiny lichens and moss budded in the shadowed ground beneath, but there was not enough sun or water or hope for much more.
I don’t regret it. I know she doesn’t either. We had to learn to bend and it wasn’t going to be with, or for, each other.
She has bent now and the part of me that was always reserved for her is both excited and pleased completely, not a smidgen of envy or jealousy or hurt, just plain joy because her happiness was always what I wanted and she has it. She has it. She doesn’t have it with me but we can’t win them all, right?
After the destruction and before the now there was the moment when we saw each other, in the flesh, face-to-face, for the first time in two, three years? Maybe even four? We did find each other out of that crowd of jostling, boorish and absent-minded college students. Our hearts synched for that moment, I could feel her heart beating in my chest, could feel the tremble of it tingle across my shoulders, and it felt good. It felt like sliding into home base, like lifting the covers on my bed and tucking into the warmth of a familiar comfort, it—
Then my girlfriend took my hand and her girlfriend took hers and the wonderment disappeared off of both of our faces but we smiled. We gave each other gentle nods of acknowledgement and went our separate ways.
We will never be dead towards each other but finally, we were at peace.