Wednesday, December 7, 2011

And Just Like That

The Darkness is my past. 

It comes up out of nowhere and tries to remind me that, for all of the progress I have made in my life, I can't forget all of the bad.  I cannot ignore what I once was.  No rose colored glasses for me.

It comes to me and says "Cymbaline, you think you are better?  THIS is what you are" - and then proceeds to flash all of my sins before my eyes for a few days.  A few days to re-live all of the sordid events that made up my adolescence and early adult-hood.  To the point where I can't close my eyes without seeing a memory I wish I didn't have.

It makes me feel dirty and unable to scrub clean.

Except this time, the Darkness was a bit different. Because it wasn't my past reminding just me that I was garbage.  It was reminding me that David was going to wake up one morning and realize he was seriously considering spending the rest of his life with a slut.  Or former slut.  Except there's no difference when you are under the spell of Darkness.  Once sullied, always sullied.

And so I've been sitting in a funk since Sunday - brooding over David and unable to focus on anything else - you know, like finals and papers which are right around the corner.

But a little angel came and reminded me that once, not too long ago, I worried that David didn't like me except as a friend.  And that it was only when I asked him that things straightened out.

The angel was right.  I'll ask him, I told her, tomorrow.  Except no, why wait?  So I texted him "rlly need to c u - can u come 2nite?"  And I never ask him to come.  I always go see him.  So yes, it must be important.  And so he responded that he'll come after work.

And so he called to tell me he was here.  I asked him not to come in.  I couldn't take the five minutes of having to be fake with him and whichever family member opened the door.  So instead I put on my raincoat and slipped out into the dark and cold and wet of the night. 


And in a very deja vu-type way, we were once again in his car with the weight of the world on my shoulders.

We sat in the front seat, engine running and heater blowing.  He shut off his wipers - and the rain, streaking down the windows and pounding on the roof, gave us all the privacy I could ever ask for. 

He looked at me expectantly.

And, much like the last time, it all came out in a rush.  Much that I wanted to tell him, and then much more.  I told him about the Darkness (he knows already) and I told him how this time the Darkness was about him (this surprised him).  I explained how I worry about losing him.  How much worse the fear gets when I dwell on my own past and assume he does the same.  I tell him how I can no longer imagine a life for myself in which he isn't a part of.  I told him this and the telling was like taking a scalpel to myself and carving up.

It was like cutting little pieces of my soul, putting them in my palm and holding them out to him.

To David. 

To the person with the power to make all the hurt go away - or to make it unbearable.

And then he did what he does best.  He didn't pooh pooh me or condescend.  He didn't tell me that I was silly or that my worries were silly. 

Instead he told me the truth.


"Early on, I thought everything through.  You know how I am Cym, I don't really rush into anything."  I nod, this is true. 

"When I was thinking about whether or not I wanted to go out with you, to make this serious, I thought about all of it.  I thought about  how you make me feel, how smart you are.  I thought about the way you think about things.  How you make me laugh.  Sometimes.  Cause I'm far funnier than you, but no one's perfect."  He pauses, possibly waiting for the laugh he isn't going to get.  I'm sitting in a rain darkened car waiting for the world to fall on my head, he isn't getting a smile out of me right now.

When he realizes that his joke fell flat, he continues.  "I thought about your personality.  And I also thought about your hotness.  In other words, I thought about all the things I'd normally think about when I'm debating about going out with a girl.

"BUT.  But because you are you, I wasn't just thinking about whether or not I wanted to go on a first date.  Damn, Cym, you and I had been friends a long time.  This wasn't about trying to figure out whether or not you were date worthy.  This was always about figuring out whether you were relationship worthy.  As in - future together worthy.

"So yes.  I thought about all those normal things.  But I thought about everything else too. Your nutty family situation.  Your religious views.  Your past." 

I flinch.  He sees it.  "Yes, even your past.  Look, I'd be lying if I said that some of this stuff didn't bother me at first."  He stops.  He's seeing that I'm pulling back, ready to start defending myself and making excuses and begging him to reconsider and all of the other irrational thoughts and feelings that just be obviously written on my face.

Instead he puts a hand on my chin and says "Shut up, Cym.  I'm not finished.  Let me finish." And his voice leaves no room for discussion and so I shut up and let him finish.

"I said it bothered me.  Past tense.  As in, none of it bothers me anymore.  Look at you.  Look how far you have come.  Look how you've grown as a person.  Look at who and what you are now.  Even as a Jew.  You aren't the same non-believer you were a year ago, no matter how hard you argue to the contrary.  And that stuff with other guys... look I know what you were going through.  And I know it didn't mean anything.  So I don't care.

Are you sure? I ask him.  Are you sure you thought about everything that can possibly bother you about me? Ever?  Under any circumstances? 

Because I want to believe.  I really do.  I want to think that this amazing, incredible guy, who I've wanted more than anyhting else in the whole world, wants me the same way.

"Look," he says.  "I love you.  I want to be with you.  Forever.  I want to marry you and have kids with you and fight about stuff like where we are going to send them to school and how old they should be before we get them cell phones (he's referencing an inside joke here).  I want to have whatever kind of wedding you want to have and proudly introduce you to people we meet as my wife.  That's what I want.  More than anything.  I want you to be my wife.  Is that clear enough?"

And it is clear enough.  Because I'm crying and they are tears of joy.  And he's holding me awkwardly around his stupid transmission shifter and telling me how much he hates it when I get in these worried moods (if only he knew) and how helpless he feels and I'm telling him that I'm fine, I'm great, I've never been happier in my entire life (which is 100% true).

And he says "Great!  Can we eat?  I'm starving."

And the Darkness was suddenly gone.


And I'm sure dinner was great.  I really couldn't tell you.  I know where we ate, but I'm not sure what I ordered.  I just know that I was blathering on at the table like a giddy idiot and I felt such a HUGE sigh of relief.  And then he dropped me off and walked me in and we spent five minutes making small talk with my brother who was downstairs when we came in and then David left to get back home .

And Just Like That...

All was right in the world.


  1. >I want you to be my wife.

    I may be dense, but isn't that officially a proposal?

  2. You'd think this was fiction, but very well written.

  3. You found a really great guy. And he found a really great girl.

    Also, second Altie.

  4. Am - I've been happily sigh-ing for the last 12 hours.

    EK - Let's call it an unofficial one.

    Altie - I admit that I took some artistic license, especially with the dialogue. I tried to write it exactly as he said it, but i'm pretty sure i wrote it exactly how i remembered him sayng it, which may not be the exact same thing :)

    COJ - Thank you :)

  5. I had the same reaction as kvetcher! :)

  6. It's like you're the new Dodge. "Cymbaline: Grab Fear by the Horns."
    You inspire me.

  7. MW - Nothing official!!!

    Malka - I inspire the little angel? How ironic!!

    Irina - Notjhing official!!!

    Kvetcvher - you are geting me in trouble here!

  8. >Kvetcvher - you are geting me in trouble here!

    Aw, you know you like it!

  9. This is a fantastic post! Aside from the good news included at the heart, the writing itself is powerful and very moving. I'm also a bit of a new reader here (can't recall if I've ever read/commented before), but it sounds like things are going well. May they continue to be wonderful and positive.

  10. I'm sorry but if you are having a relationship with a guy who is cheating on his girlfriend for the past 8 months and he is still not commented to you...guess what he is playing you too! There is no excuse for cheating...Just because you are underaged he could still sneak around secretively without having a gf..You are being duped.I only feel bad for the are as dispicable as the guy..You get what you deserve.I definitely know "Jimmie" will get what is coming to him.As far as the parents of the underaged girl, they too are messed up...what a disgusting situation. Great basis for a relationhip betrayal, deceitfulness, and lies!