No one wants to look back at their life and say I should have fallen in love more. Or that I could have helped this person more or done this differently. No one wants regrets or their good memories to fade. No one wants to feel pain and the utter agony of losing someone they love.
The problem is that all of these things happen. They happen all too often.
A few years ago while I was at work a man sat down in my office and started talking. We took brief breaks from the conversation, but always picked right back up where we left off. We talked about everything from the weather to the kids anything, no subject was forbidden.
We spent hours talking everyday into the wee hours of the morning when we would finally fall asleep. We were friends, then best friends, then something more.
When I finally found out about all of his problems I did everything in my power to try to help him. It was in one of a hundred or so evenings spent talking late into the night that I found out he was an alcoholic. He had a temper. He had an abusive past. That he had dated a friend of mine, but they didn’t get along at all. (Chel I spoke of her death a few weeks ago.) He could be trusted to a point, but he could barely trust himself, so I couldn’t put complete faith in him either.
I learned just as much about myself from this relationship. Mostly that I didn’t want to live with an alcoholic ever again. I thought he was different from my husband whom I had been separated from for months, but he wasn’t. They were the same. He just came with a giant house, flashy car, he was gainfully employed (for a time) and he was doting. Anything I needed he just gave it to me.
I learned here that material items don’t matter. I learned that no matter what it looks like from the outside it can be a train wreck on the inside. I found out that I would rather live in the dumpiest apartment that contains honesty and love, than the biggest house built on distrust and disillusionment.
After an afternoon invasion by his ex-wife I learned some terrifying information and began to try to get him to commit to a rehab facility. He said he didn’t need to go. So instead he had a breathalyzer installed in his car. So that he could prove to me he wasn’t drinking. Well…he just stopped going anywhere. He stopped showing up at work and left major projects to the help. He was troubled and I felt stuck.
About a month and some very persuasive phone calls from his daughters I was finally able to check him into a facility. He was committed to a 30 day program and had high hopes. Imagine my surprise when four days later his ex girlfriend drives up with him and he says “he’s all better.”
I left two weeks later. I cut myself out of his life, disappeared off the radar, threw the cell phone he had given me into a trash can in Milford, CT. He had been calling every day telling me that he had made a mistake, and that he loved me and wanted me back. I wanted him to get run over by a car and die. He hurt me, he hurt people I care about.
But I loved him. I guess that’s really how abuse plays out. We love them in spite of the things that they do to us. I didn’t throw the phone away because I was angry with him. I threw the phone away because I would have broken down and let him come get me. Eminem’s song, “Love the way you Lie” that was us.
Gasoline and fire. It was intense and crazy. I don’t recommend it.
Fast forward to Sept. 22, 2011, I get a random invitation to friend him on a social networking website. I replied telling him he should kiss my tuckus, but we have been emailing ever since. Until about a week ago.
Yesterday I found out why.
My heart is a little fragile lately and now it’s a little broken. He was actually hit by a car trying to cross a street. I don’t know if he had tried mixing alcohol with his medications, all I know is that he was taken by life flight to the medical center. He was on life support until Friday and then he was removed from the machines that were allowing him to continue to live.
I think if I had heard this news before Sept 22, it wouldn’t have hurt so much. I was still angry. I was still caught in the past pains we had caused each other. He had apologies and explained everything that had happened since I left. I had explained a few things to him as well and now…now none of it matters.
I implore you to tell the people you care about what you are thinking. Don’t waste a minute on feeling bad for yourself and your thoughts and your fears. We all have them wouldn’t you rather be afraid and with someone who can relate, than detached and with someone who simply wants to use you?
Live now. Love now.
Don’t waste a second because you never know which second is your last.