Yeah, it’s true, sometimes life throws you curve balls….but those bumps NEVER hurt so much as the ricochets.
Sometimes bad things just happen, but most of the time, WE are the source of the pain and chaos WE suffer in life, and its especially painful for a few reasons; we were almost always warned by someone who’d been there and done that, but people are arrogant, and tend to think statistics don’t apply to us. We always think it won’t happen to us. But, being warned means that we should’ve seen the wreck coming, which only adds to the humiliation. To make matters even worse, most of us are led by vanity, so we tend to keep digging that hole deeper and deeper, until we’re finally FORCED somehow to admit we screwed up. Only then will we ever see positive progress. Doesn’t matter if that “ricochet” was a result of recklessness, greed, lust, dishonesty, or any one of the other host of instinctive behaviors that we all have a tendency toward and all struggle and sometimes fail to restrain; the outcome is almost always the same. We suffer, then we finally either admit, learn and move on, or we deny, stop growing and die miserable.
Civilizations have moral codes and expectations not because Jesus, Allah or our govt force them on us, but because as a self-aware species we realized early on that certain behaviors had consequences, and that we required something to act as a social adhesive to bind us together and restrain our most base animalistic and self serving instincts, so that we could grow as individuals and as a species.
Why am I writing all this? Because I was reminded again tonight of the consequences of something I did that I, at the time, thought to be absolutely insignificant, thought would never be known and therefore thought would be inconsequential anyway, and then, as the aforementioned law predicts, continued trying way too long and hard to justify after the fact. Funny thing is, that’s not even me. I’ve never had a problem saying, “Yep. I did that. I fucked up. Sorry.” And yeah, I know the game: next step, I analyze possible outcomes and decide if I can accept the consequences, or if I should start to repair the damage. But this time, when the cost was more than I was willing to pay, I made a different decision. I grabbed my shovel, and I gambled, and I kept upping the stakes, and kept digging, and gambling, and, OF COURSE, I lost. At some point long before it happened I even KNEW I would lose. But, out of a lack of courage, and lingering sense of misplaced arrogance, I kept on digging, and in the end I hurt someone that TRULY means the WORLD to me, (not to mention I hurt myself indescribably). I lost her trust, and her faith, I humiliated myself, and damaged something that had been as close to perfect as possible, and strong, and beautiful, and unique and even empowering, and it was damage that may take years to repair, and worse it’s damage that reflects on the faces and in the lives of way more than just the two of us everyday. I betrayed the hopes and the trust of so many, probably made them feel a bit naive, maybe even used, certainly let down, and I did it all because I was ashamed, cowardly, selfish and prideful. I failed to grasp the real impact on everyone of my actions, or lack thereof. I didn’t see what difference a ten year old brief lapse in judgement made to a relationship that was WAY younger than that. Besides, I was sure she would never find out in the first place. AND, even IF it ever actually came to light, I reasoned, I can surely talk my way out of anything, anyway. I always have. Definitely worst of all, I failed to show HER the faith and trust she’d shown me, and that she deserved. I sat there and had the nerve to pick and choose facts about my past, keeping her on a need to know basis, even as she told me EVERY detail of hers, no matter how embarrassing, damaging or risky it was. And that really IS the height of contempt. And truthfully I DID ABSOLUTELY love and adore her, and I still do. So the truth is, my failures have no justification, explanation or excuse, because even then I was confidently planning and imagining our life together at 75 years old, frankly. And that, I’m sure you’d all agree, is the height of arrogance.
And yes, the consequences have been just what I knew they’d be, exactly what the terms of man’s contract with natural karma, to which we give consent at birth, prescribe–months of agony, sleepless nights and lonely days, broken hearts and broken love, lost trust and lost faith that may never heal completely, and, at least as of this post on 6/4/2018, have more or less lasted to this very day. Progress has been made, but relative to the damage that was done, and the reality of the past, it’s been negligible at best. To see in her eyes a touch of distance and emptiness that I know I put there, after I’ve sworn so many times that her fulfillment and satisfaction were my only goals, brings me to my knees. I promised to always be there, and that she would wake up every day knowing she was loved as much as ANY woman could be. Now she says she feels abandoned, and asks if my words were EVER more than that, JUST words. She questions each kiss, and each “I love you.” Every good time and every good memory she no longer shares with the man who was there that day, but the man she sees today.
So I’m posting this for her to see, and all to see, so that I can say I’m sorry. I want her to know, and anyone who cares to read this to know, that I admit my mistake, I own it, and I wholeheartedly accept the consequences that I’ve suffered unbearably, that I’ve truly been more miserable than I knew possible, AND that she WAS AND IS my heart, my world and my future. She thinks SHE’S alone, that I’M no longer there in heart because of all this, so here’s my declaration, before the world, that I’ll ALWAYS be there, I’ll ALWAYS be hers, NEVER let her down or leave her alone, and most importantly, that I’ll spend every day that we have left together doing all I can to remind her that not another man in the world loves a woman more. I realize that big people life, with all our responsibilities, and work and other commitments, sometimes cause us to forget love and romance, and we allow routines to get in the way, but NEVER will any of that matter more, and from this day to my last one, I swear I’d turn my back on it all before I’d let it come between us. YOU are my focus and priority. And despite what you think or feel none of this has changed a bit from day one. So sleep peacefully tonight, my heart, confidently assured that you and I are and will remain one–strong, determined, unbreakable and unbeatable. I won’t falter, and we won’t falter. And, at least in my mind, neither the ghosts of a dark past, the uncertain fog of a yet to be defined future, or the overwhelmingly painful and uncertain reality of our present circumstances can do a thing to change that. WE define our feelings AND our future. And we make our own decisions, because emotions ARE subjective. If you are convinced a love is dead, then it IS, in fact, dead. But as long as you refuse to give up all hope, each day that you both wake up is another day that the rebirth of that love is possible. And WE ALL live with the consequences of the convictions we force ourselves to accept. The simple truth is, it really only takes one person’s misguided loss of hope or faith to kill something that was once thriving, progressive, fulfilling and beautiful. So, at the end of the day, take away all the right lessons here. Follow a moral code, be prepared for the consequences if you don’t, and keep in mind, a tiny misstep on your part can destroy someone else’s entire world and leave them feeling unnecessarily trapped in the darkest recesses of their own mind, all the while the light they are so desperately seeking, that thing which to them has become as seemingly vital to their future as air, water and nourishment, lies in you.
NEVER be afraid to own, address and suffer the consequences of your mistakes, and never let go or ignore the fact that EVERYTHING you do, every word you speak, every action, impacts someone. And if that someone happens to be THAT someone, REALLY that someone, that someone that you only find once in a lifetime, remember that everytime that curve ball hits them, that’s another ricochet, another chink in YOUR own armor, another crack in YOUR foundation, another step closer to the ledge. If they go over, if they fail, fall, weaken or crumble, you’re right behind. That’s how it should be, and if not, they were never THAT person to begin with.
Since I’m laying bare so many raw emotions and allowing you all to look on, like voyeurs, or tourists happening upon the most beautiful scenery nature provides, or maybe passers by at the scene of some tragic accident, as I share and explore the less intellectual and more brutally honest emotional aspects of such a personal experience, I can’t help thinking I should add this disclaimer, even if it is almost certainly unnecessary: EVERY letter which forms every word that lies before my audience, was written for only one person. She knows who she is; as do most of you. And just to be clear, the light I need, the vision, the strength and purpose and hope for tomorrow, I never truly had them before I had you.