I was thinking about him again last night for the millionth time. For the millionth time I hated it. The memories are bittersweet and over time have probably become more bitter than sweet.
It’s been more than three years since I last spoke to him. I remember that evening as though it happened last night. I knew he was getting ready to get out of the military and to start a new chapter of his life. I tried calling and this time he answered. We talked for a bit and I was stunned to hear of his moving in the morning. I didn’t know it would be that soon. He never said a word to me about when he would be leaving. He said he’d been busy and sick – excuses for not talking to me in weeks and yet, with a big move there is some truth to that.
“I miss those blue eyes,
How you kiss me at night;
I miss the way we sleep,
Like there’s no sunrise,
Like the taste of your smile,
I miss the way we breathe” – Colbie Caillat, “I Never Told You”
It was everything I could do from crying on the phone. I simply didn’t expect to not have one more chance to see him. I’m certain that’s part of why he never called back that night like he promised – the quiver in my voice revealed my feelings. He told me he doesn’t handle emotion very well several months prior. He told me he tends to push people away to protect them and at the time I bought the lie. He may not even totally realize that it’s about protecting him, not his loved ones. I never heard from him again. I revealed my slightly “crazy” side by trying to call him a few times but I didn’t go overboard, at least not in my opinion. But again it was probably enough to scare him, though in retrospect, he may just never have called anyway.
“I see your blue eyes,
Every time I close mine,
You make it hard to see.”
– Colbie Caillat, “I Never Told You”
The memories are like the ocean tide – high and then low. The waves of memories come creeping in slowing and steadily, creeping up on the shore inch by inch but then fall back, leaving only traces of themselves in the sand. There must be a full moon this time impacting how long this high tide is lasting because it’s sticking around far too long. At low tide, I think of him but then it passes fairly quickly and I move onto other things. This high tide – the waves are stronger than I’ve known before and it’s not slinking back to the ocean as usual. It’s brutal.
Jann Arden is a wonderful singer/songwriter, whom I first heard on the radio back in the 1990s. She penned a song called “Insenstive.” She wrote about how this particular man is cold and calculating. He never seemed to get caught up in the moment; “let his hair down” so to speak. His emotions, if he had any, never got the best of him. She asks him simply to teach her how to do that; she writes: “how do you cool your lips after a summer’s kiss; how do you rid the sweat after the body bliss; how do you turn your eyes from the romantic glare; how do you block the sound of a voice you’d know anywhere.”
To be fair, he isn’t “insensitive,” but he has mastered his emotions. That’s a nifty little trick. I wonder how he does it? I wish it were something I could learn. Oh how my life would be easier if I could just block the sound of my heart’s voice; that little call to my mind that brings up all those memories and tortures me so.
Maybe it’s the lack of closure as me and my friends suspect. Maybe it’s because somewhere deep inside I still hope to hear from him. I don’t know; I just know I don’t like it. It feels foolish to keep the memories around and certainly to keep thinking of that week I spent with him in Oceanside. How stupid it is to think about how he treated me so kind when I wasn’t feeling well, or how we played around on the beach or how it felt like we were playing “house.” Could I be any more silly when thinking back on how he held me? Or how he kissed me? What about his silly side I loved so much? It’s all foolish. Every last memory – foolish.
Today is the close of my category – “The Foolish Things People Do,” as April is ending. I just wish I could quit doing foolish things with the end of the month.