The title to this post is an excerpt by Jen Lemen from the short film below.
We loaded our bicycles, panniers, salty-skinned bodies into
the van. The door shut and the dog licked my face. I smiled on the outside, retrieved
my camera, snapped a photo with my husband, then watched as the open hills of
South Dakota moved like sound waves through my heart, everything singing loss. I might never come back for my
destiny, I thought. Jesus Christ, I
might never know.
Some people are doorways into new depths of our selves. My
body pulled into his like a magnet, like it had been dead and suddenly shocked
awake again. Once we feel, we cannot un-feel.
Almost a year later, I still could not undo my longing. I want for us to come clean, I wrote my husband with every ounce of courage in me; to honor each other out the door.
We ran into each other on a random side-street in the city at 2am on a Tuesday a month after we split. When I didn’t know how I was getting
home, he offered me to stay at his. We hardly cuddled in that tiny twin
bed. He tried, but I couldn't kiss him. I couldn't bear to take off my
clothes. I couldn't offer my body, not my heart, not my hands. All I could
do was sob. And so I did. And he did, too. We sobbed together until we forgot
why we were sobbing. Until we fell asleep like motherless babies in a new world
neither of us knew.
My best friend curled into my bed after her brother's wedding. We spooned. The gas that had been grumbling in my stomach for a month was
slowly disappearing. I slept without worry or stress. I woke up with tears in
my throat. Drove her home where her family was waiting.
Do you ever miss him? her parents asked of my ex.
Sometimes. We're not talking
right now. I just need the space.
I got back in my car. Soko played in the background. Four
years and I still haven't gotten over you, she sings. The whole ride home, grief flooded my face. I landed on the couch, asked my mother to read to me.
He called from South Dakota one year after my ex and I loaded that
van with our bikes. My ex was back on the Rez and ran into him, told him out of the goodness in his heart that we broke up and I’d
love to hear from him. Then gave him my number so he could call.
I’m building my house, he
left on my voice-machine. You can come
out if you’d like. I’d love to see ya. Three hours later I was in a rental
car. Two and a half days later, he was holding me at the top of his dusty
driveway, a whole universe of unfinished business flooding our bodies.
I heard every message God wanted him to deliver me. We sang
every song that was stuck in my throat of doubt.
A cat nudges me now in the mornings, purrs like a reminder
that love comes in many forms. I sit alone after a year of dating around, doing my best at not hurrying for others arms or
eyes. I sit alone now in a whole new body, cell after cell transforming from
stuck to free. I do my best at getting out of the way, at letting myself float in the
unknown until something real jumps out for touching.
Some truth about love
is really wanting to break through you, Jenny tells me on the phone today, one year exactly after my ex and I split.
It’s true, I say
knowingly, tears cracking my voice. I have to keep going like this--risking everything for
my truth, not knowing what will happen. I have to stay willing to speak everything in my heart, then watch things break or be born again.
Yes, she whispered with power. It's revolutionary work.
It is. But what else is there? I'm here for the very best quality love. I can't pretend I'm wired any other way.
Not pretending is the beginning, she said.
Yes, I nodded quietly, knowing that beginnings are only born when we brave our honest endings, and no ending is done without courage.
A year ago this short was filmed by my incredible friends Jen and Corinna via Hopeful World Productions. Brian and I so tenderly agreed to let them capture the very end of our relationship on reel. I am so thankful to have it, to hear Jen's wisdom, to see all the love matched with all the loss, to know that truly, our goodbyes are the beginnings to the new life that is waiting for us. Today, I hope you give this film a watch. And may you know, especially if you are amidst grand change, that there is reason to be hopeful, to have faith, to trust, that a deeper truer you is ripening. And that we are truly, truly together in the tenderness of our beautiful endless cycles.
All my love,
Everything Changes from Hopeful World on Vimeo.