That face

I’d have written yesterday afternoon that I was beginning to think that I hated him. I might have written the same this morning too. I wouldn’t write it tonight. That is the last thing that I’d write tonight. 

I was preparing myself for feeling rageful when he came this evening, I honestly expected to feel like that. But then I saw his face. There was no rage from me. That face, that face belonging to a man I could not wait to marry, I could not wait to show the world how lucky I was, how happy I was, how incredibly in love I was. That face.

I found that there was no rage, just a need to talk to him, to talk to him about absolutely anything, just to talk to him, that man, with that face. I wanted to make him laugh, to tell him stories, to make him feel comfortable. I wanted to be near him. I couldn’t be further away from hating him and that face of his if I tried.

Later on I stood alone in the kitchen, just standing there, feeling lost and like a spare part. I listened. I listened to him read the children a story in the other room. I didn’t go in and look, but I could picture him there on our sofa, with our children sitting close to him. Lucky enough to be able to sit close to him. I imagined their faces as they listened, I imagined his face as he read. I listened and I cried. Warm salty tears escaped from my eyes and I just stood, alone in the kitchen, feeling lost, feeling like a spare part. Feeling far away from hating him and a million miles away from being what we once were. I closed my eyes, I listened. It could be just a normal evening, daddy home from work, the children snuggled up in their pyjamas next to him. It could be a normal day. But it wasn’t. It will never be a normal day again.


I couldn’t stop those tears from falling, my eyes were stinging. I tried so hard to keep up the brave face, the hard exterior, but it just crumbled. I couldn’t hold on to the pretence any longer. I cried sitting at the back door looking up at the night sky, the stars twinkling as I pleaded with the cold air to stop my tears. I wanted so much to be comforted, I wanted to be comforted by him. I’d have given anything to feel that familiar hand on my shoulder. He left and I didn’t turn around. As I heard him drive away it took me back to a time when I didn’t say goodbye to someone else, didn’t look at them as they left and unbeknown to me then, it was the last time I ever saw them, it was my last chance to say goodbye. I have lived in regret ever since for not looking, for not saying goodbye that day. I felt sick at the thought of that being the last chance to look at Jon, that face. Anything could happen between now and the next visit. Anything. I would never forgive myself if that was my last chance. If he never knew how much my heart ached for him and how far away I was from ever hating him. I cried, I cried tears I couldn’t believe I still had left in me. I couldn’t stop them. It was that face that did it, the face of a man I will always love, never hate.

Comments

  1. I truly know what it means to love someone absolutely and also loathe them. Well, it’s not them I loathe, it’s the way they behave. The way their actions affect me and those around me. That my unconditional love seems to be met with something that is so far removed from what I see love as being that it seems a bit incomprehensible. Bewildering even. Love a person, hate the behaviour and all that. I keep telling myself that. I’ve been telling myself that for a long time. But sometimes it’s bloody hard to separate the two. And then something will jolt you into remembering that you don’t actually have the capacity to hate this person, no matter what they do. That love, really, isn’t that fragile. You can be broken, feeling utterly beyond repair. But there love is, burning on for this person, despite everything. And I suppose that’s no bad thing. If you truly loved someone I don’t think you can just turn it off like flicking a switch. So I would say it’s ok to love. And I would also tell you it’s ok to loathe sometimes. But what’s not ok is to keep putting up with it. I know that I owe it to myself to say “enough is enough.” It’s so hard when love keeps getting in the way. But as strong and resilient as love can be, it’s not enough on its own. It’s not enough to make things ok. Love needs support. Love can only conquer all if it’s helped to victory with trust, kindness, honesty and a little selflessness once in a while. I know all this, but I still keep trying to rely on love alone. Don’t you do that. Keep being brave xxx

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