In Spring, they’d gotten closer.
Jay held Tara’s hand & shielded her face during the scary parts at the movies. Tara made sure Jay didn’t forget to eat lunch & always knew when it would rain. They enjoyed each other. It felt, to Tara, reminiscent of love.
One night, Tara asked the question you’re not supposed to ask. Sitting on Jay’s couch, she turned to face her and asked “What are we doing, Jay? Where is this going?”
The silence was interminable.
Tara looked into Jay’s eyes and found them wide and helpless. She didn’t see an answer. Tara mumbled something about having to go, picked up her purse and bumbled toward the door.
“Wait,” Jay said. And for a moment, Tara hoped for a word that would bandage her pride.
Tara made it to her car before her face crumbled into the silent sobs of embarrassment. She didn’t notice Jay looking out of the window, watching her fall apart.
Jay closed the curtain and sat back on the couch. She’d missed a text.
MICHELLE: When are you coming over? I’m tired of waiting. You need to come now.
Jay laid her phone back down.
“I’m sorry,” she said to no one in particular.
In the winter, before they were on different frequencies, Tara saw Jay and thought she was the most beautiful thing she’d ever seen. Jay had the smoothest skin and the brightest eyes. Her hair was cropped short and was always neat. Her clothes were stylish and masculine, but vibrant. Tara fluttered her eyelashes and smiled her best smile whenever she ran into her at the copier, but Jay never said more than hello.
Until one day, Jay really saw Tara. Jay saw Tara looking sad or upset or lonely – she couldn’t tell which – and asked her what was wrong. And as they spoke, she noticed a softness in Tara that she hadn’t seen from a woman in a very long time. Nothing much was wrong; Tara was just having a shitty day. But Jay drank in her warm smile and her glancing touch. And for a while, she wanted more.
Jay knew it couldn’t really last, but for a while it was nice to pretend.
Jay stared at her phone. On one hand, it was good that Tara had stopped texting. Jay didn’t have anymore answers. On the other, she missed the texts – it was nice to know that Tara still cared. Jay frowned at the incongruence of her thoughts.
Tara wanted too much. Jay stretched out on the sofa and twisted her lip in concentration. Tara wanted to care about Jay and ask her things and spend time with her. And Jay was almost violently resistant, but she wasn’t sure why. Tara was great. She wasn’t a model or anything, but she was attractive. She was sweet and caring and smart. Jay actually liked her quite a bit. But she wouldn’t let her in.
“She doesn’t know what this is,” Jay mumbled.
“Did you say something?” Michelle called out as she came from the other room.
Jay looked up at Michelle.
“I didn’t say anything. I’ll walk you to your car.”
She was stuck to the bed.
Not literally, but figuratively. It was raining and Tara was stuck to the bed. She looked out of the window and wondered what Jay was doing. Then she scolded herself for wondering and planted her face in the pillow. It was a cycle she’d repeat over and over.
Jay was gone. Jay wasn’t worried about Tara. Jay was probably rolling around in the glory of someone else. Jay was hardly real anymore. But Tara’s imagination worked overtime and she wondered how something that was once so alive could now be so dead.
She stared at the ceiling. Only one more day of weekend. Tara was thankful. The silence was killing her.
Have I got a story for you! Remember how I came to town on my birthday? Remember how you walked past me at the party like I was a vapor, a ghost? I hurt in a way I hadn’t hurt before. But I held it inside. I didn’t cry until I got alone in the shower and alone in the rental car and alone in a stall at the airport.
I decided to leave my pain right there.
So I came home and I decided that my life had to be different. I decided to stop playing around and feel how I felt and not cry about it. And, most importantly, I decided I was over and done with your officially sorry ass. You meant to see me broken and suffering because I’d slung some imaginary hurt your way; a mythical transgression that I apologized over and over for – even though I had no idea what it was and you refused to tell me. I decided you were never going to get that satisfaction again.
You’ve seen me broken. You’ve seen me beg for slivers of your attention, bits of your time. You’ve seen me crying, weeping, praying for a resolution. You’ve seen me trying everything I knew to get you to love me. You’ve had that satisfaction and you will never, ever have it again.
You will say that we were never meant to be together. That isn’t true. We absolutely were. But, there is more than one route to happiness. Thankfully, I’ve found another way there with a different co-pilot.
I’m so thankful for sleep.
Being able to rest and rejuvenate yourself is a great thing. Sometimes sleep evades me or doesn’t provide the quality I’d like, but eventually it comes. I’m happy there is a free way to get the benefits of rest.
I’ll keep this short.
I love food & I want to thank it. I’m thankful that we get our nutrition this way and not some other way. I’m glad I can taste and enjoy yummy food.
Guess who’s hungry??