He came up and kissed me on my forehead, and before he stepped away, I closed my eyes and tried hard to memorize this moment. I wanted to remember him exactly as he was right then, how his arms looked brown against his white shirt, the way his hair was cut a little too short in the front. Even the bruise, there because of me.
Then he was gone.
Just for that moment, the thought that I might never see him again…
It felt worse than death. I wanted to run after him. Tell him anything, everything. Just don’t go. Please just never go. Please just always be near me, so I can at least see you.
Because it felt final. I always believed that we would find our way back to each other every time. That no matter what, we would be connected— by our history, by this house.
But this time, this last time, it felt final. Like I would never see him again, or that when I did, it would be different, there would be a mountain between us.
I knew it in my bones. That this time was it.
I had finally made my choice, and so had he.
He let me go.
I was relieved, which I expected.
What I didn’t expect was to feel so much grief.
Oh the comfort, the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person; having neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words, but to pour them all out, just as they are, chaff and grain together, knowing that a faithful hand will take and sift them, keep what is worth keeping, and then, with a breath of kindness, blow the rest away.