Ah! Disappointing lovers abound, yes? I mean, if we’ve been around awhile, we all figure out that no matter what misty fantasies we may swaddle even our best pals and most passionate lovers within… they are all just people in the end. A disappointment along the road to personhood.
If I’m feeling terribly mature and in my own power, I forgive most everyone – even those lovers who I believed in and who turned out to run away at the time they were most needed.
In my book, OH GOOD NOW THIS, Vivi moves back East after her husband dies, to see if she can find some balance and a deep connection with her old best friend, her old lover. She thought Vikram might have something more to offer her than her husband, Jake. She and Jake had lost touch with each other, and with their own dreams. In Vikram, she thought she had a friend, a lover, who would be willing to stay the course. Someone she could count on. Alas, he turns tail and runs.
To give him his due, he does what he can to bless their many pasts together but in the end, Vivi is on her own. As we all are, of course. And so, this disappointment is yet another opportunity for her to take hold of herself and live her life as her own.
What Vivi discovers though, as I believe we all do, is that those that we have loved and lost, have wounded or lifted us up, stay with us along the journey. They are there in our dreams, in the dropped reference to sacred secrets by complete strangers, they are with us as the sculptors of our fate. We have to come to terms with them. Ghosts don't always haunt us. Sometimes they are our witnesses and best teachers. They keep showing up.
One of the most comforting things I have come to in the last few years is that I don’t have to relinquish the love I have felt for those in my life who I desperately wanted, but were not mine to have. I decided that the feeling of love and joy and completion that I felt with those people is still mine even if there is no one to receive it. Love is love. It feeds me in the giving of it and changes me in the holding of it. I still get to hold and live in the grace of having felt love within me and had a chance to share. Even if I can’t share it now. It’s still mine. I get to feel all the goodness of that love and the fact that it is not returned does not leave me totally bereft. It leaves me privately wise and full and changed. That’s where I count my blessings.