Wednesday, July 28, 2010

This is For All the Lonely People

It starts the moment we cross the threshold out to the rental car.

It always starts the moment we cross the threshold outside. Without fail. It is a reliable as a Farmer's Almanac or a national holiday.

She's fishing up her sleeve, grabbing that gross, wadded-up kleenex she keeps for just such situations; she clumsily daubs her overflowing eyes, smudges her runny mascara.

And I, in the wisp of a second, feel concurrently heartbroken, annoyed, jealous, embarrassed, unworthy.

We stand here hugging, clinging like shipwrecked passengers to whatever's left of the sinking wreckage.

We stand here, usually amongst our families - husbands, kids. They are admittedly a little perplexed. But we are the closest thing we each have to a sister. Both of us are adult orphans. She has shouldered one more loss than me - she is an not an only child by choice.

She, so much more than me, knows how fleeting life can be. She values every single second. She milks the hell out of every moment. This is so unlike me. Me, who lives haunted by the past and constantly envisions every aspect of the future on multiple levels and axes.

She completely lives in the now. She always assumes that this could be the last time we see each other.

The very real possibility of that theory makes me feel like I've got a large rock at the bottom of my throat. Blocking any awkward words I might be able to articulate while weighing heavily down on my heart, squashing it into a pulpy pancake.

I used to think it was maudlin.

I now completely buy into this bittersweetness.

I don't know what shifted, don't know why I've reframed these goodbyes that have gone on as long as she's been living out of town.

I think it may have something to do with the time recently I became overcome with longing. To just laugh. About nothing. And everything. With her. Every day. To cry because our sides hurt and because we were hilariously pathetic.

But, as so many things she has brought to me, I am eternally grateful for this gift she opens for me, every time she says goodbye.

The gift of adoration. Of acceptance. Of love.

I will weep my tears of unrepentant distance and hollow loneliness.

The only difference is, I will wait until I'm alone.

This orphan isn't quite ready to share yet.


the baron said...

And she laughs at the things funny and not funny. And that alone is reason to love her.

Noe Noe Girl...A Queen of all Trades. said...

I know this feeling all too well...only I dont wait to weep. I just go on and blubber up in public. I'm shy like that.
Miss you! And her too.

Baroness von Bloggenschtern said...

Baron: By funny, you must mean me. By unfunny, you must mean Zeus.

Countess Nora: I do not think that you and I are thinking of the same 'she' - but I do miss here somethin' awful, too. xxoo

Meg @ Soup Is Not A Finger Food said...

This was simply lovely, B.

Anonymous said...

Oh my Gosh...this made me cry as well as take my breath away. Thank you for writing what you can't the written word is truly your gift..and today as I prepare to say goodbye to my children for what could be another year i know I have more tears to shed..I love you my sister of choice.

foolery said...

I know this well. Sometimes I am she and sometimes I am thee but always I am there. Big salty, teary hugs to both of you.

Baroness von Bloggenschtern said...

Countess of Soup: Thank you.

Countess of YikYak: Like I've said many, many times, I am much more effective expressing myself in 2 dimensions rather than three. Take it while you can.

Countess of Fooleryland: Aw, hon. Mushy tears right back - sorry about the smudged mascara on your nice clean shirt...

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