I am aging in a way that brings peace to my spirit. It’s something I’ve been struggling to gain for over a decade and now, I’m familiar with how to attain it and even more importantly, how to keep it.
It is the month of love and everyone is fumbling over their confessions, careful not to spill more than their fair share of beans and I find myself uninterested in their daily goings-on. I am moving through this life with my feet planted firmly on the ground and every move I design before me is planned and calculated. I am my own defense.
The hurdles I jumped led me to this smooth path and although there were holes in my soles over time, I wear better shoes. I am more prepared, more . . . knowledgeable about what I want and what I aim to get.
Each year, I think about you and how it was hard for you to see me for who I was and love me for that too. I now recognize that I was eager to find fault in the way I loved because it was too much for you — it was too bold for you and I spent years attempting to cut out half of the person that made me happy simply to satisfy you.
What kind of hell was I living in that made me believe I was in heaven? I would not dare seek your counsel, opinion, or thoughts on the matter, you would only make me wary and even more apprehensive.
I am finding peace in the swell of the clouds and the gusty landings of the wind. I stand in a circle of forgiveness which includes all versions of me; past and present. I tell them you didn’t need me. I tell them you couldn’t love me. I tell them we know better now.
I am who I am and to be loved for that is the only kind of love I envision. If anyone interested holds something different on their tongues, I . . . We don’t want it.
Sometimes, I miss it. Sometimes, I don’t. You know . . . Us. It doesn’t hit me as hard as it used to when I was crawling through my twenties or attempting to climb my way through my thirties. But on those dreary, cold days where the wind is blowing harder than the predicted chill, I find myself lost in thoughts of you . . . of Us. And I do drift to a place where it’s not so easy to leave — the comfort of it can be damaging.
And who would blame me at this point? Good memories are hard to come by these days and I have enough stored up so I can pull from them at will. Isn’t that a blessing? Isn’t that something for which to be thankful? You would say so. I know this. You saw God in everything including the devil that wrapped himself up in us. You would call us golden if someone gave you the floor long enough to gloat.
I find myself lost in thoughts of you . . . of Us.
I didn’t mean to stray so far away but I was hungry — in search of other ways of getting fed and the easiest route was the one that led to strings being plucked by long, slender fingers and a voice like crème brûlée— sweet & smooth. I stuck to those things. Tangible and present. Different from what I had begun to see in you.
I could never deny the fire burning in us. We stoked it for years, poking at it with thick sticks, setting apart the embers. We had learned how to pull back just in time to save ourselves from becoming charred — scarred for life or disposable.
You saw God in everything including the devil that wrapped himself up in us.
We were music. Classical? Rhythm & Blues? Funk? Maybe we were jazz. The ease of each tune dancing across a room or a verse of scats uttered quickly by chocolate-covered lips. We lasted for hours on play. The B-side was the best side. The B-side was my best side.
Back and forth. Over and over. We had our best days and our worst days and some would say we were like that one Lenny Kravitz song until we were finally over. No more violins or bass riffs. No more snare taps or saxophone rips. No crooning or gyrating at the mic . . . We were — until we weren’t. We grew until we couldn’t.
I was hungry — in search of other ways of getting fed.
And it took so long to get to that place. What were we waiting for?