Monday, February 6, 2012

Letter to C

[I must tell you all out in the blogosphere that this was not the entry I sat down to write AT ALL!  I was going to write to Chuck because I haven't seen him today and talked to him only a little.  I was going to tell him how I went to OfficeMax to get Sara's party invitations printed; how I left my flash drive there; and how I went back to retrieve it in my slippers and pajamas because I had managed to squirt honey all over my work clothes while I was getting supper ready.  Oh, and how I reminded myself as I walked into OfficeMax in my "space rockets" jammies that these days, people wear pajamas out in public all the time and call them "leisure pants".  Whatever.  Guess I'm not in charge, here.]

Dearest C.

You don't read my blog any more.  There was a time when it was a lifeline between us.  And a time when it was a portal into my heart that I did not want you to find or read ever again. Now, it's actually extraneous!  If you want to know how I feel, you can just ask me.  What is to be found here that you can't request any time you want?

Well... that's mostly true.  Sometimes I put stuff here that I can't say out loud to you.  Maybe it reveals too many of my insecurities; or it touches painful places that neither of us wants to probe.  My insecurities are fading, anyway; so maybe there isn't a lot here for you after all. 

You often say, "I keep meaning to read your blog.  I need to get caught up."  I generally demur with something like, "Ah, it really doesn't matter."  And it doesn't.  When I write to you here, I think I may be writing for my own self. 

On Saturday night, we were at a big party together; and I was inspired by being out with you in the company of others.  We moved from group to group, chatting with people - sometimes together, sometimes apart.  I watched you from a little distance, smiling and talking.  I knew that after a while, your hand would touch the small of my back and you would ask if I wanted a drink.  We would share a slice of birthday cake and pretend to compete for the chocolate layer.  You would introduce me to this or that friend, saying ridiculously flattering things about me and embarrassing me.  People would admire my $6 second-hand dress, and I would get to tell them that you helped me with the alterations.

Your friend told you in private that you and I "seem like the perfect couple".  That's bullshit, of course; but we really are scarily companionable, peaceful and aligned.

One of your old friends reminded you that tomorrow was Super Bowl Sunday; and that last year, you had been at a party at his house.  I know a little about that day.  It turned into a day and night of turmoil for you: fear and confrontations and heartbreak and sleeplessness.  Meanwhile, I was struggling with a similar misery.  A year ago, the pain and the trouble had only just started.  I didn't know at that point that it was going to get much, much worse before it got better. 

At this point last year, we were completely separated, and I thought I would never see you again.  I don't know what you thought at this point a year ago.  Did you think you would never see me again?  I have never had the guts to ask you much about your feelings a year ago.  I don't want you to relive all that misery; but I wonder sometimes. 

I asked you during a quiet moment at the party whether these "anniversaries" of painful times strike you and hurt you, now that a year has passed.  You said you weren't impacted in that way.  I didn't say any more about it, but I AM!  For example, I know that it's almost time to go in for my annual gyno, because I remember how utterly beaten down I felt that day at the gyno last year.  It's February, so this is a hurricane season of bad memories, for me.  I'm so glad it isn't for you.  All through March, too, and April and May, I will remember all the ugly shit, just the way it happened. 

I stand in February this year, straddling the calendar page with my arms spread out and my face pointed at the sun.  I feel like I'm s-l-o-w-l-y thawing in the warmth that radiates from you.

We had our coats on and were headed for the door.  A quick turn on the dance floor: you swung around while my purse dragged along on my arm.  I laugh and think how the days roll into weeks, then months of happy times.  You pulled me in for a little smooch and I knew - if I can make past the next few months of remembering, I will be able to let it all go.


  1. Kate, this is so powerful and poignant, much more so than pj's in public. Blogs and writing in general bring out things that talking cannot. I go through this all the time with my husband who neither reads my blog nor most of my work. It's just not his thing. Yet, so much of me is in my writing, and I can't get it out verbally. There's a major gap there, though I know why he doesn't read my stuff, besides the fact it's not his thing. He doesn't understand or like poetry. He doesn't want to read about controversial issues (or really even discuss them because they piss him off). He's stressed from work and reads boring stuff all day. One more "assigned" reading will probably push him over the edge. In short, he's not into reading the kinds of things I write and even if he were, he probably would not have the energy. When he does have time, he'd rather read game manuals, game websites or once in awhile, fantasy. And that's okay, except that he's missing an entire part of me. But I would never demand he be something he is not. So I totally hear you.

    I am sorry you had such a rough time last year. In general, I find February one of the suckiest months of the year. The weather sucks, the memories suck (my daughter was in the hospital a couple of years ago in February) and we never go anywhere in February. So I totally hear you about February, too.

    Wow. I also didn't plan to write all this. Thanks for the catalyst and the commiserating.

  2. As Katherine said above, that is a powerful post. It reads like a book. Have you ever thought of writing a book? Of course you write your blog, but you certainly have a talent with telling things as they are.
    I'm sorry too last year was so awful. I hope soon it will all seem a very distant and detached memory.

  3. Bing seldom reads my blog. She says that she sees me in person everyday and would rather listen to my voice. And, frankly...I would rather have it that way too.

    The odd thing, though? If she wrote a blog, I'd read it religiously.

    I started my blog for my sisters because I tired of always owing one of them an e-mail. They all read at first and now just check in occasionally. All of them have told me that they like me LESS on my blog, that I am way too honest.

    Now, my blog is for my daughter. I want her to have a piece of me when I am gone.