Monday, March 19, 2018

Wax and Wane

Wax and Wane
By Michael Cannata

Once you fall in love, I mean really, completely, in love, your life is never your own again. When I met Sarah, my life, our lives, changed forever. We didn't fill any holes in each other. We added to one another. We were better as a couple than we were as individuals. Making each other happy made each of us even happier. We always thought of the other one first. I'd lived a long time just fine before I met her. Yet, from that moment on, I could never imagine life without her. Together, our love would help us conquer any problem life would hand us.

We lived in a tall building with a beautiful view of the city. We had a special spot where we would sit on the hot summer nights admiring the view. She would often go and sit on the ledge and look at the traffic far below, her feet dangling high above the street below. She always claimed that she felt like she was flying. It made me nervous but she never seemed afraid. Her courage always amazed me, but I would stand close enough so I could grab her if she should ever make the wrong move and start to fall.

We should've had a lifetime together. We had our future all planned out. Unfortunately, life doesn't always cooperate with the plans we make. She got far too sick far too early. She was still so young and strong and she should have lived forever. Sadly, disease can strike even the strongest people without warning. When we discovered that cancer in her ovaries had taken root we were devastated. But we believed that our love would beat it. We discovered that love can't conquer everything.

As she grew weaker fighting the disease, I stayed strong for both of us. We never cried. Staying positive was essential. It got to the point where our hope became a form of denial. It was as if, as long as we refused to consider it possible, she wouldn't die. Right up until the day she passed, I clung to the belief that she would overcome. She would beat the cancer.

The tears I'd held back began the day of her funeral. They haven't stopped yet. I'm still pretty young, but the future that was once full of promise, is now filled with empty years. I go on. I get through each day as best I can. The nights are the hardest. Nights that should've been passed with her in my arms, are now spent alone. Holding her in my heart just isn't enough anymore.

Sometimes living isn't all it's cracked up to be. Some days I feel pretty good. My mind forgets the pain for awhile, but never for long. I wax and wane between states of happiness and despair. I laugh and cry. I want to live, but I look forward to dying. I know she'll be waiting for me. How long I can wait to see her again is the big question.

I sit on the ledge every night thinking how close she is. If I only had the courage to jump, we could be together. But I know in my heart, if I jumped, she would be saddened. She would want me to live my life as fully and as happily as possible. She would want me to fall in love again. For me, loving someone else just doesn't seem possible.

Every night, after sitting in her spot on the roof's ledge, I go back to our apartment and go to sleep thinking of her. Her name is always the last word I whisper before sleep takes me into my dreams. Dreams that always seem to take me close to her… but never close enough to reach her. I desperately want to go to her. I just can't bring myself to do anything that I know would upset her.

When we meet again, when my time comes to embrace my own death, I want her to be happy.

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