It’s been a reasonably long time now, since the troubles between us finally ended. We were neither friends nor lovers, but it doesn’t seem as though we were wholly enemies either. Perhaps we were really just casual acquaintances with disparate points of view forced into an uncomfortable proximity by cicumstance. I’ll never really know. What I do know is that how ever much we judged each other, hurt each other and drove each other mad, at times we supported each other with uncommon kindness too. Whether that was nothing more than a social conscience doesn’t really matter to me. All people are special, you’re a person, that means you’re special too. I guess everyone contributes their own unique form of beauty to the world. I think you have something that deserves to be valued and that, more than anything, it deserves to be valued by you. I hope you find someone who truly loves you, not just in their own way but in a way you can recognise, applaud and relate to. Someone that makes you feel safe, strong, loved and inspired. But I hope you also realise that not just one but many of these people exist in the world and that meeting one of them is inevitable, and alarmingly rapid, just as soon as you realise that you are worthy, that you do deserve to have love and you give yourself permission to shine. I know that you are worthy and deserve to have love and I am probably the closest thing you have to an enemy. Honestly, if your enemies think that highly of you, you must be doing a pretty good job, broadly speaking. Sure we’ve all got some flaw or another we’d like to work on. But trust me on this, you do deserve love and if that’s what you want, I hope you find it again soon.
You don’t know me, & you never will. For you I walked through fire. For you I gave up 20 years of my life; I devoted myself to you. I put myself in harm’s way; not once but many times. I walked into the fear with my intestines in knots – ignored my screaming guts – because you were there. I gave up the love of my life because he was not a safe pair of hands for you, & I found a pair that was safe, who you loved, & watched you torment him. I don’t know how else to love than to live it every day. I don’t know what love means other than to care more for you than myself, & sacrifice, to clear your path. Only you could make me believe that my effort was in vain, because you despised the gift I gave you – life. Oh my daughter a day dawned in which I did not know you. I could not see the child I brought into the light of a winter’s day. A day came when I closed like a shell over the ache in my heart that only you could put there. You survived. Now you probe like a vivisector to find fat scallops of pain & eat them up. But I am whole. I have taken back my pain. It is buried too deep for you ever to find it. You cannot expose my nerves to be flayed again. I see you try – teasing, twisting, goading. I turn my attention elsewhere, & laugh, about something else. I am shut, & the key is lost.
I see that you are gravely ill. I smell your fear. You are emotionally labile, so I accept your tearful embrace. And I say nothing & I go. You request a book-list from me. When I return & you are improved, I give you my precious books, & the list you don’t even glance at. But you are greedy, as always. You want more. You want to pretend that I can be different; that the past doesn’t matter; that trauma was imaginary. You trespass on my relationships, that you see in a fuzz of golden clouds my weather has long since burned away. Australia is harsh, but its penetrating light & unfathomable skies reveal what can be seen, & I am just like this. You ask me to be gentle, & I want to say, I was, once. When will you stop trying to change me? Do you believe that the countless nights that death stalked us have vanished from my memory, without leaving their trace? Do you think that the trust you destroyed didn’t change me fundamentally? Did you think that my sacrifice of my own safety for yours left no scar? Do you believe that betrayal, abandonment, indifference, is love? How can you ask for one more thing? But you do. Now you want my writing, & I say no. It is not for you. You misunderstand & complain that I think you are not intelligent enough to read my work. I never implied any such thing, but I know you. This is how you manipulate, to force intimacy. I am immune. None of your tricks reach me now. I no longer ache to be understood. I no longer need to show myself to you & be seen for what I am. I no longer need to speak truth to your absurd generalisations, confabulations & inventions – well, ok – lies. They are all so self-serving mother. I cannot send you to the grave with the sliver of my soul you desire. It is too late for understanding. You have had 80 years in which to invite redemption. I have forgiven you, not for you, but for me. I am free.
For there has been hills we have went up and over only to find it goes down but as this affection fluctuates there is a desert that plateaus.
It is a plateau of my feelings towards you, my emotions that yearn to be held by your ears. It is a constant constraint of love that holds my heart to you, a resonance of love that remains unwavered.
Please see this and show me that not only do you not need the front door of our house, you don’t need to hide what you feel, if there is any deeper water beyond this point.
I hope you enjoyed it, the time you had.
I feel as if you left too soon. You should’ve told me.
But I wasn’t there.
I’m sorry that I wasn’t there when you needed someone, and I’m sorry that I’ll never see you again. I’m angry that I’ll never see you again.
I’d like to keep you as a myth, I think.
A mystical creature that I once believed in. You were a Prince in your own fairytale, and just like real life, there’s no happily ever after for us.
And I’ll never be anyone’s princess.
But I loved you.
I loved you so very much and I’m not ready to say goodbye.
So just don’t be gone. Ok?
You taught me to love by giving me love. You taught me peace with your inside-lip smile. You taught me to question by challenging me. You taught me to listen through your notes. You taught me to feel through the rhythm. You taught me to breathe through the waves and the rainforest water. You taught me to embrace this world.
A friendship of so many years – so many great times and hard times we have shared…For the last couple of years I have felt our paths diverging and many times after limited contact or response from you, I have wondered ‘Will this be the end?’ But then you call and speak as though we spoke just days before & my heart feels lighter again. Lots of contact. No contact. Limited responses. The unpredictability is unsettling. We are not open anymore – there are many things unsaid between us and it weighs on our relationship. Layer upon layer of buried words. The insecurity of our relationship is heavy on me and soon I may need to let it go…
I wish the best for you but to say this to you in person is very difficult. I want to move on but you give every indication that you want me in your life in a big way. Its seems irreconcilable, so for now please understand that my absence and silence does not mean indifference or hostility.
Instinctlively – I knew your behaviour was wrong! In years to come, incidents that I should have told you as my father so to protect and defend me I was not able as the incidents were similar. How could I tell you of the wrong of others when you did the wrong as well.
At times I can be all over the place emotionally – anger, rage, depression, embarrassment, denial – the damage has affected me in so many ways. Do you remember, are you sorry & why in the years following did you continue to treat us so badly?
You have been my friend, my love, my support, my audience, my teammate
and more; you have given me your all. What have I given you? I am sorry
from the bottom of my heart that I could not give you all of my heart.