And you loosed the chains;
Carried the cross of my shame.
I have often wondered if I ever really told 'The One' how much I appreciated him in addition to how much I loved him.
No, 'love him'. It's eternal, the feeling, when you've done it right.
My regrets in life have been few, and perhaps it is because I have not ventured out enough, or perhaps I have been lucky. But the major regret I have about the time spent with him was that I never allowed him to carry the burden of our relationship. He tried to offer; he asked; he demanded.
I kept it all a secret from him about just how scared I was at times that it was either not real or too real.
Funny, the one person I should have been able to talk to was the one person I wanted to protect the most from whatever 'things' are out there that destroy relationships.
I thought of this over the weekend as I was visiting girlfriends in Canada. I thought of all of the ways I didn't get things right or got them more right than I expected. And all of this thinking was brought to the surface because a new friend sent me an email that made it clear he was willing and able to be a shoulder if ever I need it.
A few months ago, another friend of mine was 'there' when I needed it most. He's got one of those great broad sets of shoulders but I always hedge a bit because he has a more complicated life than I do on some levels. I can remember him asking if he was 'doing it right' (the shoulder offering) and I realized at that moment that I want to be his friend forever.
I'm not good at accepting shoulders. I feel like I should do one of two things: Warn him or try to learn to be able to receive help when I need it. I've already done things with him that I usually don't. It started when a girlfriend of mine asked what was wrong with me. She meant it in the best way possible. She looked at this friend and said: From the sound of it, you should really try something new with him.
She had her doubts about "The One" and "The Prince" from the start of each relationship. She asked me a question after my Austin trip last year. She said 'don't you just want to be single for a little while?'
I heard her loud and clear. And that's what I did. I took a look at myself and decided single would be better while I went through the painful process of thinking.
Then a girlfriend set me up with 'The Prince' and we did whatever it is we are doing. Dating? I'm not sure, although that is what he has called it at times.
It has never felt like it to me. I just didn't put in enough effort, I guess, to express it adequately.
See, I am willing to admit when I am at fault.
So, back to the new friend who has said I could write about him here, but who is still without a pseudonym. For now, he will be 'The Writer' because it is something he does extremely well.
He has me pegged in a way no one has pegged me in a long time. He quickly expressed that I say nothing while saying a lot. Smart guy.
I do my best to listen to what others say, and also to what they mean through their actions.
It's how I got to Paris, you know. I listened to words and actions on my trip to Denver and when I boarded my flight home, I sat down and wrote something just for me. Then I got home to New York and immediately booked my trip.
I had forgotten about my post until I was flying to Geneva. I opened my iPad and read the words:
Do. Not. Wait.
That's how I feel now. Like life is going and I've chosen to wait for things or moments when I know better. For months I was happily just doing then I got stuck somewhere. Confused? Lost? Ambivalent? I'm not sure.
I just know that the sun came out this weekend. Inside, where it needs to shine the brightest.