Saturday, 9 February 2008

The importance of goodbye

Ive been away a long time it feels, but now I feel as if Im coming home again.

A post on a dear friends site prompted me to write about this, I had not intended to but perhaps our stories are more important than we know.

My partner of seven years and I parted company shortly after my return from New York, but before I went and during my stay there I was already plagued with doubts as to his ability to commit to me or anyone else for that matter fully.

He was a warm, fun loving gentle man,a soft and loving aura about him, full of charisma and charm, qualities that used to both delight yet annoy me when he would abuse his gift with other women, harmless enough but at times disrespectful and something I would address with him. He was caring, with the benefit of hindsight I can see he cared a lot FOR me, but there were times he forgot to care about me and how his behaviour could hurt, very sutble but nothing like my ex who was all out aggressive. I could at the end of the day laugh with Alan about it and forget about it, but thats about who I am

I was aware of his tendency toward jealousy, his need to be the centre of attention, his need to have me around. He said all the right things using words like Us and we, times when I felt it was better to let go he would say "so are you just going to throw it all away.

Coming from a childhood that was troubling and confusing due to my fathers sexual abuse. I entered a marraige that was quite frankly frightening in my husbands need to control, and of course this was all behind closed doors. Next time round it was different with Alan showing me love and intamacy behind closed doors yet pushing me away in public, as I say it was all very subtle.

When I came back from New York my heart didnt need telling that he had been unfaithful, so I left..... a few weeks later it was confirmed by himself when I found out he had taken his new love abroad, something that wasnt meant to happen as he was still playing the" are you leaving me game". His justification " Well you didnt want me" I half expected a 'So what was I supposed to do' to follow on those words.

I have I suppose been holding my own post mortem on our relationship, he has gone into hiding, but non the less Ive let him know who I was in the relationship and that I loved him and all his quirky ways, but am hurt that he chose the cowards way out when so often I told him, if he wanted to end it, if it wasnt working for him then he would only have to say. No point in keeping each other prisoner for fear of hurting with goodbye, sadly he was not man enough to leave without a security blanket, a loving breast to suckle on so he can avoid the guilt and pain of what he has done to the good man in him

I have many happy memories, I have learned soooo much about who I am through Alan, simply because that gentle aura that allowed me to get close to and fully love a man, perhaps for the first time in my life and I have no regrets at all. I come away valuing my love, my ability to love under difficult circumstances, my loyalty, my sense of humour, my willingness to stay and give someone the benefit of the doubt because I love them but most my courage to leave when that doubt is removed beyond all doubt.

As I said to him I would rather carry this pain, in the knowledge that I will heal than carry that insidious guilt that knaws at the heart and soul that comes through the knowledge that youve hurt something good and innocent.

I have no doubt he will contact if this relationship falls apart, as he cant cope with being on his own. Hopefully he will also remember and appreciate that feeling of perhaps being real for the first time in his life with someone who refused to collude with his self deception. as I have the knowledge that this woman is in the position I gradually came to realise I was in when our relationship first began. Some men will always have their fix waiting and prepared before they leave a relationship, but you dont know until you know.

He was a tired man, but then keeping up delusions and self deception is tiring, I should know because part of me kept deluding myself in the hope that when he said " I thought you were the one, that he really meant it". Sadly as it turns out he wasnt the one for me..I too have choices

I also have many memories of good times and wont forget that I made them happen too because of the special person that I am. Perhaps we forget this in the midst of the pain and hurt and anger of letting go, but then we remember again.

kahil gibran

Your hearts know in silence the secrets of the days and the nights.
But your ears thirst for the sound of your heart's knowledge.
You would know in words that which you have always known in thought.
You would touch with your fingers the naked body of your dreams.

And it is well you should.
The hidden well-spring of your soul must needs rise and run murmuring to the sea;
And the treasure of your infinite depths would be revealed to your eyes.
But let there be no scales to weigh your unknown treasure;
And seek not the depths of your knowledge with staff or sounding line.
For self is a sea boundless and measureless.

Say not, "I have found the truth," but rather, "I have found a truth."
Say not, "I have found the path of the soul." Say rather, "I have met the soul walking upon my path."
For the soul walks upon all paths.
The soul walks not upon a line, neither does it grow like a reed.
The soul unfolds itself like a lotus of countless petals.

Now where is Africa again.:)

After a while you learn the subtle difference between holding a hand and chaining a soul And you learn that love doesn't mean leaning and company doesn't mean security. And you begin to learn that kisses aren't contracts and presents aren't promises And you begin to accept your defeats with your head up and your eyes ahead with the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child And you learn to build all your roads on today because tomorrow's ground is too uncertain for plans and futures have a way of falling down in mid-flight. After a while you learn that even sunshine burns if you get too much. So you plant your own garden and decorate your own soul instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers. And you learn that you really can endure that you really are strong and that you really do have worth And you learn and you learn with every goodbye you learn... ©1971 Veronica A. Shoffstall


Icarus said...

My truly dear, much appreciated friend, I just found my way in here, as I was about to start something else. I have to transcribe what I wrote to you sitting my the river today into this box of tricks that feels like it has turned into another stick to beat me.
But first, I came here to check.
I read, no drank, all of your words & the quotes. I hadn't forgotten, not once, that you were supposed to turn the final page of the marriage this month.
I naturally wasn't expecting this bearing of what happened with Alan, the kind of sad details. It reminded me of something I'd long forgotten. Your paragraph starting "I have I suppose....", then later, the "I have no doubt...".
I was still quite young when I remarked that I had observed no relationship separation - marital, or non - that did not occur without
that "security blanket", that shiny new "loving breast" (it was almost always the male fleeing the nest in those days)in place. It seemed to me that the protagonist simply lacked the courage to base the split on the truth. It was much easier & more convenient to just believe "I have a new love; the old one os jaded, dead. If I don'«t escape now, I'm a fool". And they were fools, as time would usually tell.
Dishonesty. Cowardice.
And me? Fast-forward through 17 faithful years and did I do any different? I went mad. That is different. There were close female friends who jumped at the opportunity (jealousy-inspired?)to turn suddenly to despising the me that had loved as a friend and say:"There you are, then. Even him. he's just the same as all the rest of the men,after all" Only, Ana wouldn't here of it from them. It i not to say here whether she was right or wrong to defend me, but she knew what had led up to it, and that I was ill.
Imperfect beings, all of us.
You I have nothing but admiration for. That you are able to look right at it, at the whole picture, dissect it and see it for what it is. Then express it in a totally plausible, credible way.
You have what I have almost totally lost now, lucidity to articulate what you see.
You will be hearing from me in the not too distant future. As I wrote this mroning, you have to know that it requires a monumental effort now. If it idn't, then I would NEVER have fallen so silent. More silent than in all my lifetime. Something is very wrong indeed in me & nothing can or will put it right.
It is a sorry story you have narrated and shared here. Not about you, but about masses of people & stuff. The one good thing is (I sincerely hope I am correct)you DO have the for├ža!
There is a light that burns out of you through your words that is nothing but a force and a will for good, for opening up, eyes and heart open and going forward. The human touch.
Can we all tag along? I don't want a security blanket. I just want a truth and peace of mind, without which we are really nothing, have really nothing.

With all my love, and yearnings for your well-being


Audrey said...

My dearest Stewart Thankyou for coming to sit with me a little while, it means a lot as I sense you are perhaps feeling drained mentally and physically, take care and rest well if you can

Your words and openess are as always healing and soothing making them all the more precious that you give when you perhaps need for yourself.

I have always fought my mothers motto that "all men are the same", refused to believe even as a child, its simply not true. All men are human, some more in touch with their sense of a humanity and what it means than others perhaps, but very true for me non the less.

Mens hearts bruise and can get crushed just as easily as a womans and I always felt that Alan was a classic case of a man who had lived this experience. I knew he was a sensitive soul and having met his ex wife could understand why. The acid toungue the public humiliation of his very centre. I told him gently on a couple of occassions that although she had divorced him, he was still emotionally married to her in a sense, in his responses to me at times, one could sense his fear and panic at times

Yet he was most of the time very much in touch with his centre, and a warm, affectionate and loving man with a deep need perhaps even longing to have that recognised and appreciated. He had a deep need to be needed.

For me the hardest lesson was allowing a man to enter into my very strong independant mind where I had to be responsible for keeping it all together as there had never been any man in my life before who I could trust to depend upon...truly. I too had to emotionally divorce my husband and my father and learn to trust, learn to become interdependant, partnership and romance. It was sweet and real and I will never forget it.

Despite the pain of losing him, part of me half expected it, perhaps a self fullfilling prophecy who knows, as Alan put up with interference from my ex in the most henous way, and did so with a patience that humbled and astounded me, another thing I will always remember about him.

Circumstances can be overwhelming at times, loves gets lost amid the mire and sometimes people feel they cant find their way back to it, but real love, the kind I want and need, never dies,its always there the silver dollar shining in the sh.t of our lives, one has to be prepared to get ones hands dirty in order to recover and claim it I believe.

Regarding Ana's belief in you, a brave woman will never lie to herself, not where love is concerned and Ana is one brave woman, with a wise soul and a big heart, dont know if she would agree but too sit with anything other than the truth is more painful at the end of the day, than to sit with your love for another, no matter what the circumstances.

Time Stewart may flee and times there seems as if there is never enough, but love stays and can always be found if we have the courage to look inside and not destroy the good in ourselves and it frees us, doesnt keep us prisoner, I think thats a choice we make ourselves.

May your days become lighter, somehow, little by little. Be gentle with yourself my friend.

Much love to you xxxxxx Auds

Gledwood said...

That is a beautiful post...

d'you know that song my Madonna: the Power of Goodbye... that quite aptly sums up some similar sentiments...


(I will try and post it up today...)

Gledwood said...



Audrey said...

Thanks Gleds that song just encapsulates the situation perfectly,it was quite affirming. Goodbyes are not always easy but very important how we handle them..:)

Mousie/Paisible said...

wishing I was nearer to take your hand and take you for some nice walk where we could have tea, do some stupid shopping and chat about useless forget life and difficulties and men and...
send you a sunday kiss...