Text Me No Texts


Part deux.

I mean it was an honest mistake.

Then I thought later, and not much later at that, there are no mistakes in God’s world.

I received a text this afternoon as I was heading to the park with the boys, they had been scrumptious today, although the day was long, and I was ready to be done well before I was.

I was a bit nervous about my travel plans for the evening.

As I write I am at many thousands of feet above the Earth, the empty plastic cup of orange juice testament that I am flying elsewhere.

I only drink orange juice when I fly.

I have no clue why.

Perhaps it is because it’s a treat, I don’t drink juice in regular every day life, coffee yes, juice, not so much.

The flight has already been a bit challenging, we sat on the runway for over an hour and a half before we were cleared to fly—there was a woman who dropped a cell phone and it somehow slid between the wall of the cabin and the seat and could not be retrieved. The mechanics had to ascertain whether or not the signal from said phone was going to interfere with the navigation equipment of the airplane.

That’s a new one for me.

It was an intense hour and a half as well, the engines were at a half throttle and the sound was overwhelming, I felt trapped in the a horror of metallic noise that would not abate.

I have never said the serenity prayer for so long, a constant and continuous loop.

“Wait,” he said, “and took me by the shoulders, “pray with me, say one word at a time, and breathe,” as I stood at the security check point at SFO in December about ready to fly to Anchorage to see my father, in a coma, when last I had seen him framed in my sister’s doorway in Madison, babysitting my nieces.

He was drunk.

Not obscenely so, but buzzed and he smelled of beer, a saturated smell and the soft rot of regret, cigarettes and sweat that I have long associated with my father.

Flash forward a dozen years and I was going to see my father in another kind of door way, one I was not sure he would cross over or stay, just here, on this side of the threshold.

I stood, shaking at SFO, trying to breathe, trying to muster the strength to go forward, through the fear, and out the other side, knowing only that I knew nothing and had no compass for what was going to happen next.

I breathed in and out and said the words.

I followed his lead.

He hugged me and I walked through security.

I feel now that my father’s trauma and how I walked through it were a harbinger of the end of the relationship.

Or perhaps, its mid-point.

It was never going to get better than that.

The relationship went down hill and though it was short it was intense and though it was hard, it was sweet, and though there are things I won’t ever say in my blog, I did a lot of work to work through all the things that came out and up and I kept showing up to the page, to my heart, to my self.

When I thought I was going to go mad with the aloneness that can sometimes overwhelm me and I was walking Ocean Beach crying on the phone with my person, missing my ex, or better, the theory of my ex, the company, the shoulder that I momentarily leaned on, the person who taught me to breathe that prayer, I felt as though I was always going to be alone.

That even though the relationship was never the right fit, that it was the only one that I would have, that I wasn’t deserving of more and that, was it.

It’s not it.

It wasn’t it.

I have more in me.

So much more to give and have and hold and receive and be and I can see so clear how it, the relationship, was the stepping stone to the knowledge of who I am and what I want.

Funny that.

A two-month relationship, nine weeks total, and all the things I learned.

And lo.

There is still more to learn.

The photograph popped up on my phone from an unknown number.

A couple of bunnies jumping.

And a goofy tag line.

“Ahahaha, that’s hysterical,” I texted back.

I didn’t recognize the number, “who is this?” I added.

Then I sent it without thinking anything.

Who sends me memes?

Nobody.

Oh.

Shit.

Oh.

I typed my ex’s name followed by a ?

There was a long time before there was a response.

The text response was odd and I don’t remember it, I don’t recall it, or really the others that follow, only that after a few back and forth messages, well, I stopped engaging and I deleted it—the string of messages, I didn’t want to reread them or think about them or argue about he misunderstood me.

The gist of his understanding was that I had deleted him from my life, like I had the number.

Huh?

That our relationship meant nothing to me and that I just erased him out of my life and WTF? And yeah, ok, I get it, blah, blah, blah, “it’s a defense mechanism” and a few other things.

I was sad.

No.

That was not what I meant.

And I don’t owe and explanation, so I didn’t give one, but no, that’s not what I meant.

No.

Not at all.

I did not know what to say, I know he saw some bunnies, he obviously thought of me and he reached out and when he did, well, gosh, I had forgotten him, I had just scratched him right out of my life.

I don’t suppose I ever will, I haven’t forgotten the men I have been in relationships with, though more than one of them I am not in touch with and will never be.

Jesus.

I don’t like texting.

I didn’t like it when I was dating my ex and so much of the communication was via text. It feels rudimentary, solipsistic, unformed, emotionally small, non-communicative, and overall, vague in the worst way.

An emoji is not an emotion.

I can’t read a person’s mind.

I can’t see their face or hear the tone of voice being used.

So much is lost.

So much.

I felt sad.

Sad that this man, who I do care about, from a distance, who provided such support and kindness to me during a horrific time in my life, misconstrued my meaning.

But that’s not my fault.

Texting is vague.

Easily misunderstood.

And I feel a way to engage without being fully emotionally present and aware.

It is subterfuge.

It is not conversation.

It is flat and one-dimensional at best.

I deserve more.

I want to be here, in this moment, full and alive and loving.

What I want is reality and not a one-sided conversation with a fantasy person.

It’s hard to show up and be present.

It’s vulnerable and tender and I don’t always want a person to see me.

I was shellacking my eyelids with glitter earlier, layering it on thick, I felt sad.

I was missing someone this morning, I had not been in communication with my friend who I had been talking to a lot since the LA trip and the emotion hovering just there was a touch lonely, a touch melancholy.

“I’ll miss you when you are in Atlanta,” he said to me.

I’m going to miss him, I thought, and then realized, oh.

OH.

Oh damn it.

My person was right! I do hide behind the make up.

I saw myself, pretty, yes, done up and shiny and sparkly, and who’s that hiding under there? Who’s glamming it up to not show how they feel?

I realized as I got ready, I felt so at ease around my friend that by the time the trip was over I was barely wearing make up, let alone lip gloss and yet, I felt more beautiful and more seen and more myself than I have in years.

Communication.

With myself.

Another layer and another depth of personality plumbed.

This is a meandering blog and I’m not sure how I can tie it up neatly and communicate what I want to communicate.

I want to be seen.

I want to be heard.

I want to see you and hear you.

I want to connect.

I want to love and be loved.

These are all so true and simple.

To the best of my abilities I try.

I may not understand the language God is speaking to me, but I don’t know that it will be via a text that I will begin to comprehend the totality of my person.

I don’t want to hide behind glitter or emoticons.

See me.

Hold my hand.

Walk this world with me.

And let me be.

Present.

As I walk beside you.

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