THEY SAY LOVE CHANGES EVERYTHING.
Of course, it does. It’s the justification of emotion over reason.
You’d think I’m feeling bitter. I’m not. It’s the freedom of conscience. Guilt. I’ve reached a place that allows me to best tell my story of Aeroplane City.
It’s a world in the future I call the Halcyon Age. It’s a time of peace. Peace at the price of human emotion. Love is transactional.
But I will concede that not all that long ago, someone loved me. Each day was Valentine’s Day. I recall after losing this person tragically how I’d watch videos of us around the house or driving in the car. Anyone can do a weekend in the sun and be happy together. When you can be happy in the simple moments, that’s meaningful.
I knew what I had. But love made me more than vulnerable. Perhaps it’s nearly best explained as the Salad Days, slowly being eaten away. There were no happier times. They were all happy times. I had no complaints.
If you want to see some foolish words of love, try these. “The best part about being with her, was being with her.” What’s more. It’s true.
In just about any video, I would listen to her talk to me. The consideration and support ran deep. It’s hard to imagine a life without someone who cared for my well being, but that’s the life I was sentenced to.
Time-and-time-again, she was a good person. Then one day, I lost it all. Now when I watch those same videos of us together I have a perspective from above. She was supposed to be a better person.
Now, I think of love. It doesn’t register. I remember it had meaning. I remember it gave me peace.
I won’t lie. My dignity was stolen for some time. The year was 2018. She lied to her family. She gaslit her friends about who I was in her life. Imagine taking lunch to your fiance at her aerial studio to find out she’s not there, she’s on a date with another man she met there and all the people at the studio think you’re a crazy ex stalker.
I had to live with that lie about myself. I didn’t want to. It took time to accept some truths don’t come out. If they do, it’s when it is too late. I just had to accept the lie I was sentenced to.
It was difficult to accept the person I knew and the person that is will forever be linked to their happiness at my expense.
Still, I found happiness. I’m not bitter despite what these words appear to reveal. It’s no fun recounting this story, but how else will you understand?
What these words don’t explain to you is what I must hold private if I am to reach my true reward. I apologize for the mystery.
I’m a writer. I’ve lived a life filled with words. Yet, for all the words I’ve spilled out in my past, there are other, elusive words that I never utter. Not so much as hidden truth, as it is like a spoiler to a story. And frankly, I’ve also been wise enough to know you never put anything in writing that can do you harm. Never.
If you think I’m wearing my heart on my sleeve or I’m an open book, let me at least give you one clue to what you are missing.
To find a wise man, look for a fool.
So now, I find myself on a vision quest that can only be rewarding through the journey itself. There was a time I survived day-to-day on the will to prove her wrong. I knew it would never bear any fruit. I knew it. I knew nothing I could do would bring her back. I also knew I could never take her back. And yet, I used that desire to fuel my vision quest.
Over time, I’ve been able to look back behind me. The path is grown over with new memories. Good memories. Accomplishments. Rewards.
While I look myself in the mirror each day knowing I work hard for the things in my life, I know that I’m very fortunate to simply have my health. So many others have it worse than a guy who was left at the altar.
Yet for all I’m thankful for, I remember when each day was Valentine’s Day. Now, the postman don’t call on Valentine’s Day.