tonight i told him that i can't spend time with him anymore. for awhile. david, whom i have loved with a depth and intensity that i didn't think i had the capacity for. i said "i don't think i can hang out with you anymore for awhile." i said "i think we will always be friends but now i need to get my perspective back." i said "you didn't do anything wrong and please don't feel guilty for this."
tonight david saw me cry for the first time.
tonight i held him and he held me and we didn't want to say goodbye and i thought why am i doing this?
standing outside my front door i showed him my list of pros and cons. and i was embarrassed but he asked to see it and so i showed it. because that's what it is, asked and given, there is almost nothing he could ask that i would say no to.
tonight he said he was going to go home and get drunk. and that later he would be terribly sad. but right there in that moment he felt good. happy. and i am the same way and he is the same way and around and around and around.
but before all that. what made me cry, i was already teary because it was so shaky frightening and so hard to tell him those things. but what really got me was when he said "but i got you a christmas present." because he didn't get a chance to give it to me yet. he said "i guess it will have to wait."
and then i cried right there on the patio at frjtz over the uneaten part of my goat cheese and tomato crepe. i sniffled and i said "god this is so embarrassing" and he said "no it isn't. it's fine." and he reached across and he put his hand on top of mine and kind of stroked my hand a little, and then i stopped crying after a bit and he left his hand there on mine. and then later he turned it over on the table palm up and he held my hand for a long time, sometimes stroking that place on my inner wrist. you know that place, right?
and he said he was sorry and he said he didn't want it that way and he said that he understood. i don't know if he meant that he really understands. if he really does i think he should tell me because i don't think that i understand.
and all the other things i could write. the hours before and after i told him what was the whole point of tonight. like how he talked about knowing what he needs to do. knowing it and again about timescales and i said "do you ever think you will be 100% sure?" i said i wasn't asking that for him to answer me, but for him to think about it. to answer himself. but again saying how hard it is going to be. and i told him i know. because i do know.
or i could write about after the sad part all the things we talked about for so long before we left. happy things and imaginary things and funny things. and even nothing things. and how i will never stop being amazed at how we can be so good even in the middle of goodbye. we are so very good together. we are so good even not quite together.
fast forward to in front of my door in the cold, both with cold noses ears and hands and toes. and i told him he would have to leave first because i wasn't sure i could. and he didn't and didn't and didn't. and then finally did, pushed me up one step turned me around and fell against each other with my face against his neck and he was warm there. that is the moment i would save if i could, be able to go back into it and even in the middle of it i thought "i have to remember this. i have to remember everything about it." how his arms went around my middle and mine around his shoulders one hand on the back of his head like saying stay right here forever. holding for a little while like forever and never. then apart and almost goodbye and then together again feeling his cheek rough and all of him solid and real and there with me. a squeeze and then apart and really really apart. his hands on my cheeks saying "call me if you want to. i'll be around."
and he said goodbye and he walked down the street and i sat down for a minute on the step because i really just needed to sit down.
this is all just details. like a checklist. like an algorithm. dry and impersonal and removed, like an anecdote, something that happened to your brother's best friend's cousin's drug dealer. first this then that and finally something else.
i have not processed things enough to write more deeply than this. i am holding it away from myself for now because i don't want it to be real. he said he couldn't believe it was real. and i can't, either.
tonight i said goodbye to the person i have loved the most. and it is real.