“Just because two people don’t wind up spending their entire lives together doesn’t mean their relationship was a failure” – Ted Michael
I have had a lot of reason for reflection recently. There is nothing like death to slap you with the reality of your feelings. It’s something you can’t hide from. Sometimes it ‘s surprising what you discover about yourself.
Things you thought you had dealt with and put away long ago come screaming to the surface. Other things you thought mattered to you (rational, reasonable things) don’t.
The most resounding theme though, is love. In the end, what you remember, what matters most of all – is the love.
When you truly love someone, at the end of your lives, no matter if you made it to the end as lovers, ex-lovers or old friends – the love is still there. Not the anger, not the pain, just the love.
When my ex and I were still together, we were ridiculously in love. It was the kind of love that Tolkien would write about. The kind that moved mountains. The kind of love that changes you irrevocably for ever after. The kind of love that rips you up and shatters you into a thousand sharp, glittering, faceted pieces like smashed crystal. Admittedly it makes for prettier rainbows once it’s broken.
Anyway, I digress.
I remember lying with my cheek against his chest listening to his heart beat and thinking “remember this moment – take a mental snap shot – remember everything about it because heartbeats are finite”. And somehow I did. After that I would often find myself taking mental snap shots – thinking – hold on to this moment. Remember this.
Now that he’s gone, even though a lot of things happened between us since then – I still have those moments. I still remember the feeling of the sun on my skin, the smell of his skin, the feeling of total belonging, love, home.
Remembering made me realise that I have spent my whole life looking at forever through the wrong end of a telescope (badda-bing! cheesy- cliche-moment). Forever is not the endless continuation of something, beyond the end of sight and time. Forever is not All time. Forever is the end of time. Forever is something that happens in a split second. Forever is a holy moment – a moment where you realise your own incredible luck and are filled with eternal gratitude. Forever is a moment when your soul is at home – a moment that stays with you long after it’s over.
Forever is a heartbeat. True love IS forever – even when you find yourself weeping alone on the cold hard ground. You may go through long stretches of anger and hurt and abandonment. But when all is said and done THOSE are the things that you get over. Those are the things you let go of. But you still have the love, and you still have those moments of forever.
So where-ever you are in your story, no matter how you feel about that person today, be grateful for your “forevers”. If you have been lucky enough to have experienced the total agony and ridiculous high of true love at any stage during your life – it’s yours. Always and Forever.