Wednesday, September 28, 2016

An Open Letter

To my oldest friend and ally,

Greetings!  I hope this finds you well.  This is my very first letter to you, in all the years (almost 40 of them) I've known you.  While I don't expect a response, I hope you appreciate what I have to say.

I start by confessing that we've had an off at first, on, then off again, then on again relationship over the years.  I ask that you kindly note that the off times generally included the presence of a baby. 

I recall the early days when we were just getting to know each other.  Our budding relationship was fraught.  There were grave misgivings.  There was not even the tiniest inkling of trust.  You terrified me. I know now that I was frightened to tears that you were going to take me away.  (To be fair to me, you were so mysterious and unpredictable.)

To your credit, you never gave up.  You cooed and cajoled.  You gently embraced.  You called softly to me and I learned to fall into your arms and feel safe.  And I grew to love you. Even to long for you when we weren't together.  And so we had so many years of happiness together. 


Until we didn't. 

Oh my beloved!  Your stoicism leaves much room for my imagination so I can't say how it was for you, but for me? It was torture!  Instead of long, languid visits together, instead of your warm embrace, instead, my love, of us melting together there was upheaval and seemingly endless intrusions on our time together. The less you were there, the more I craved your peace.  I cliché as I say here that I felt I was going mad - but I really did.  My sense of reality was distorted.  Time became a tangle without you.  I remained upright.  But only just.

During that time, there were innumerable occasions on which I marveled that there was ever a time that I didn't love and trust you implicitly.  What a fool I was!

As soon as I possibly could, I worked - (really "crawled" is a better choice (hmm, might we really go for it and say "dragged"?))- my way back to you.  And like the steadfastly faithful friend you are, there you were quietly waiting, ready.  I- harrowed, harangued, bewildered, tormented- I fell hard and gratefully into your soporific arms. 

After all those years, you were still there for me.  My friend.  It changed me for the better to be reunited with you.  I was a new woman!  Upright became standing, standing became standing tall.  Things were great between us again! And so it was. 

But now?  Something is happening and it alarms (let's not get too hasty) concerns me.  You come to visit, yes, but you don't stay as long and sometimes you don't even come in, instead lingering on the periphery.  Or else you leave early or come-and-go, rather like a person caught in a revolving door. You're changing, my friend.  I say you because I am still coming to see you.  Calling. I still talk about you with my friends.  I often think about you as the afternoon wanes, a small yearning for our time together later. My desire to be with you hasn't changed. 

I want to know what is happening and how I can fix it.

I won't give up.  I know we still have something; we always will. 

Why don't you come by at around 11:30 tonight and let's do our best to stay together for about seven hours? And let's try again and again.  Every single night.

So Very Faithfully Yours,


No comments: