Friday, July 06, 2007

These are the times that fly men's souls

I received an email from someone I know who lives in Dallas. He emailed to let me know he had quadruple bypass surgery in February and to say, "Not that you care...". Like most people who have been part of a difficult breakup, he assumes things about me that are completely wrong. I have neither the inclination nor to personality to hate or dislike anyone regardless of our history and, yes, I do care, the same way I care about every other human being on this planet. I'm no longer personally involved in their lives but that is a choice one or both of us made and I have left the hurt and anger and confusion in the past. I have moved on with my life. If I saw them on the street, bumped into them at a store or party, or even received an email or letter or phone call from them, I would be cordial and interested to hear what they have to say.

People tend to believe everyone acts the way they do, and sometimes that's good. I like to believe that people are basically honest and decent and don't hold a grudge even though I know more often than not the opposite is true. People with small and narrow souls believe that when they have hurt someone that person will act the same way they do -- with malice and anger and bad feelings. They may say they do not, but their actions prove the lie, just like the guy from Dallas who decided I didn't care about what happens to him even though he expects validation. He thinks he hurt me but he didn't. He freed me and I'm grateful. Because of him, I moved to Colorado, which is where I've wanted to be. It's the old saying about the wind from one door closing opens another door.

Each action, like the butterfly in China, is part of a chain of events that leads to this moment, whatever that is going to be. For me, the events have led to a point where I no longer feel lost and without a home. I have a home here. I have a job I can tolerate without too much effort that provides me the funds to pursue writing and keeping a roof over my head near to friends who have become more like family, and I am getting more and more recognition for my writing. All of this is possible because the guy in Dallas changed his mind about the future. Other people have had a hand in my life, creating events that pushed me out of my safe zone, shook my foundations, and made me reach further for what I want. To all of them I say, "Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Without your influence in my life, even if it seemed negative at the time, I wouldn't be here celebrating happiness and freedom and the contentment that comes with knowing I am where I should be right now."

After one of my boys read the essay about my wedding he asked me if I regret going through with the marriage and having my oldest son. I didn't have to think about my answer and I didn't hesitate. No, I don't regret anything. It's something I've said many times and will say many more times, but every moment in my life, good, bad, and indifferent, is part of who I am now. If you take away one moment, even if it caused pain and scarred my soul (and there were a few of those), I no longer exist; I would be someone completely different. Sometimes it feels like getting past the pain is impossible and every moment is torture, but the pain passes and we move on to live another day, another year, another decade, or just one more moment. Life is about change and pain comes with change sometimes, but it is how we know we are still alive and able to choose the next step and the next turning in the path. It's all part of life and, if we're lucky, a part of living in interesting times. Hard as it is, it is worth it because there are days, like yesterday and today, when all the pain and sacrifice and hard work are worth it.

I know I won't always be happy or contented and I will lose more people from my life who mean a lot, but I don't worry because we will meet again, maybe not in this life but in lives to come, and maybe next time it will be easier.

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