wish list

You said this evening that you’d like to buy me something. To say sorry. For everything. What did I want? You didn’t know what I’d like…

I think that says it all about how far apart we are. Because actually I don’t want anything from you any more. Nothing money can buy. I don’t even want apologies. You think that’s negative, but actually I see it as being overwhelmingly positive. I’m moving on. I’ve (mostly) stopped being angry with you, because that anger was eating me up, killing me slowly.

Ten years ago, I wanted you to stay with me that night as I lost our baby. I still feel the pain of those final contractions in the middle of sleepless nights.

When I explained how much your abandonment hurt, you shrugged; you didn’t want to talk about it; it was over, done. And so it was, long gone by the time we had that conversation, but some acknowledgement might have eased the pain.

Again and again through the years, you did the same thing. When bad things happened, you ignored them, pretended they weren’t happening, turned your back and walked away.

When the world froze over last November, everything was bleak.  I was reeling from the news of a friend’s illness. Another friend was dying, slowly, inexorably, timescale unknown. I couldn’t cope with that concurrence, couldn’t stop my mind from making connections that shouldn’t be made.

When I put the phone down after the call, finally, three days before Christmas, telling me she’d gone, you turned your back and walked away in the middle of my sentence. If I hadn’t been so utterly destroyed at that point, I’d have thrown something at your retreating head. I hated you at that moment. My children held me through that surreal week of festivities.

The final straw, the death knell for us, was after my dad hit me in April.  I needed your support.  So did your children.  We didn’t get it.   You were ‘staying out of it.’  That was when I stopped hoping for miracles (from my parents, from you), and decided to focus on the relationships in my life which made me happy.  You know, I have some truly amazing friends.  It’s a shame you’re jealous, they could have been your friends too.

Enough talk of misery, I also wanted you to share the highs. Once upon a time, I thought you were that person, the one who I could share the sunsets with, watch waves, sing to the seals and climb mountains. Someone to bounce creative ideas off, and rejoice in good news together. The sad thing is, I can’t remember whether you ever truly were that person, or if I just wished it were so.

If you need me to tell you what gift I’d cherish, there’s no point. It’s too late. I needed you to work it out for yourself, years ago. I’m sorted; I don’t want anything more from you.

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9 Comments

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9 responses to “wish list

  1. dawn

    So many hugs xx

  2. Catriona

    Oh Nicola – it’s awful for you both. Thinking about you.

  3. Heather

    As always when it matters I have no words but I’m thinking of you.

  4. cara

    there is so much I want to say, talk , but most of it isn’t for here. I hope you will find some peace with whatever you decide. I wanted you to know that I think about you a lot, even though I don’t comment much. You can find me if you want to talk
    love and all that goes with it

  5. echoes of so many things I have experienced, but you express difficult sentiments with such achingly beautiful prose. Well said. x

  6. *hugs*

    I didn’t comment for ages, because I had no words. The hardest thing of all is when the gift you’d cherish most is understanding and that’s not something that can be bought.

    I’m here. Wherever here is – I picture sitting on a hillside somewhere, looking out on a cloudy but clear view, the breeze stinging colour into our cheeks.

    • Thank you. And this says it so well. You realise who are the people who matter, because you take them with you, inside, on both the geographical and emotional journeys.

      (OMG, therapyspeak alert!)

  7. I’m sorry that I don’t have the words, but you have my love and acceptance whatever happens xx

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