Isn't it funny how the one photo booth photo you took together is always the picture that ends up being the eternal depiction of "when you were happy?" Four shots, 10 seconds of "happy." I found ours the other day, the one that matched almost identically to the strip of photos my parents took 23 years earlier.... It was uncanny, the similarity. The faces. The spontaneous choice of looking at each other, it was like we were walking in the footsteps of a Great Love Story...
I thought your brain was magic, because it worked differently than mine. I'd slip into your boxers, while you threw on a record. That first night, you read Flannery O'Conner to me and got nervous that you didn't read eloquently enough... from then on, I'd always read to you, then we'd talk about it, while we stared at the the two dollar bills on the ceiling that you wrote "1 million" on...a million each, to start. You softened me, I stared speaking gentler....touching more. We just liked existing side by side. I liked the smell of your beard and you liked the smell of my sleepy head.
We lingered in each other. The first time you said, "I love you.." I didn't think it was possible that you could. We loved fast. We hadn't even slept together by the time we made it official, but it didn't matter- you could've been terrible in bed, but you were perfect to me.... We made love like fireworks....the entire time. We wanted matching tattoos, somewhere visible, somewhere shameless and optimistic that we'd never have to hide them.
You liked the sound of me clicking away on my Blackberry in the morning and I knew I'd woken you up when I'd hear your sleepy voice say, "click, click, click, ...." imitating my speed. That was always good...but waking up to you playing your violin....or that loop that you worked on for months, with the chimes- waking up to that, was my favorite.
I liked watching you, when you'd grab your vein in your arm and play with it, I knew you were thinking something brilliant, probably something too brilliant for me to understand. You'd write it on a wall eventually and I'd stare at it, trying to solve the equation. It all made perfect sense to you. We were both big dreamers, maybe that's what created the gap between us eventually, there wasn't enough space for how massive our love was, when our dreams were equally as insurmountable.
There's other things I probably loved about you that I've forgotten now... the little things; like, I don't remember the way you looked when you yawned, but I know I probably loved it.
I always wonder how long you knew the relationship was over before I did. I wonder if you even know the moment. I hope it was just one moment, I hope you looked at me one day while I was grinding coffee beans or looking for stamps, while doing something mundane and that something just clicked like, "I don't love this woman anymore"... I hope you didn't know forever and that with every little annoying thing I did, your contempt for me grew into a mountain of dislike, easing your lack of want for me in slowly- no, I hope it was a singular moment, the way we learned to love each other; fast, is the way I hope you stopped.
Everything you started to fix you left broken; car stereos, light fixtures, you were a master of best intentions and everything you intended to make "better" you ended up leaving torn apart. I didn't care, I just hoped it was never me.
Your favorite adjectives for me were "vibrant" and "precious"you told me you loved me more times a day than I can count. You liked to nuzzle your nose in my ear when I was on my computer, trying to work, and I'd always act annoyed, but deep down I really loved how close you wanted to be to me all the time. You liked how bright my clothes were and how I'd play a song on repeat until you begged me to stop. You liked my body and peeking at me while I was washing my hair. You liked the way the way I "fake rapped" I didn't really know the words, but I liked to act like I did. You always told me you could "feel my energy"... And you could, because you always put your hands on the spots that were directly radiating the most intensely.
I fit into you, like puzzle pieces.
I was always worried when you'd walk out the door, if there were sirens two minutes later, I'd worry something tragic happened... I still wake up in the middle of the night afraid you didn't make it home okay. It wasn't that I didn't trust your ability to survive without me next to you, it was that I didn't trust mine. Perhaps because I knew eventually I'd have to and it terrified me.
The way you always described us to people was "like this" then you'd do this circular motion with your two index fingers, orbiting around each other-until they were twisted into one entangled knot. Orbiting still but this time, together. It's what you loved about us and I guess, eventually, came to hate. I know we needed more time apart, but you were my favorite person....and I was yours too.
You could always sense when I couldn't fall asleep and you start to tell me a story, you never just stopped when I drifted off- you continued until there was an ending; you've taken me everywhere; to sandy beaches in Puerto Rico, to mythical portals of time and space, with larger than life characters and secret doorways. You fascinated me. Every landscape was in detail, textures, lighting, the sound of our feet against the tundra of ice and the smell of the air.
When I had one water glass you always had seven- I think mostly because you forgot where you set the last three, four, and five down- you'd pace back and forth trying to remember why you got up in the first place and then you'd get inspired- you'd forget to eat, to drink, because your muse needed the attention now.
You always said you'd be an idiot to leave me and I wonder if you think are, now that you have.
Everyone thought we would never split, we were consumed by one another..it was that kind of love that walks down the street and makes people say, "aw...." The love the sits in the corner and doesn't see anyone else in the room. The love that slow dances...the cinematic kind.
You liked that I wanted to share ideas, that I wanted to explore and understand- that we were curious and impassioned by religion and politics, way of life and human nature. We both loved history and art, bigger than life characters and creating. We never ran out of things to talk about, we'd spend hours bouncing ideas and opinions off one another- sometimes, we'd stop and just look at each other, awe... Adoration to the deepest core you're capable of feeling it, then you'd say something like, "I love the shit out of you" and it was the most true thing you'd ever said- even though shit was in the sentence.
...Sometimes we'd take a picture, there's on of the side of my face, in New York City- the bar lights give me a sort of "Red Light Special" look- but bar, red lights and city aside- it was as pure as a moment gets..."I want to remember this forever" you said. I remember everything and sometimes I wish I didn't....because I remember how much I miss you, constantly.
I've let go, remember? I really am. I'll leave soon...to another city, create another adventure, and hopefully fall in love....I just can't imagine that it won't be with you, it really was a Great Love Story.
TELL ME....WHAT WAS/IS YOUR GREAT LOVE STORY??