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Disastrous Valentines

Subject : Worst Valentines Day Ever?
Posted Date: : Feb 15, 2007 10:13 AM
He came in, saw the gifts, and took a deep breath. He said his typical series of "Oh Wow" comments, and then opened his gifts. He tried a truffle, he thanked me for everything, he kissed me, and after going down for some cookies and milk (with all the chocolate in the room...) he watched his DVD. The whole time I sat there in the center of the bed in my night gown, my legs curled around in the cutest fashion I could manage.

"Oh, I'm beat" he said after he got done watching the DVD - or at least half of it. He got ready for bed and we climbed under the covers. We assumed the usual position with my back to his stomach, he wrapped his arms around me, and that was that. One or two tears leaked out of my eyes, but I was fine with that. I was fine with that being all that was all that was going to happen. Then he said he was sorry.

"I'm sorry I didn't bring you any flowers."

"I don't need flowers," I choked out, forcing the sobs not to escape.

"Maybe not, but you deserve them." Finally I couldn't hold it any longer. I suddenly burst out into sobs and the tears were streaming down the side of my face, staining the pillow case with the makeup I had carefully applied before he came home. My body shook with the emotion, and Pete held me tighter.

"What is it?" He asked. I sobbed harder. Pete rolled me over slightly, wanting to see my face. "Can you tell me?" He asked again. I took a deep breath.

"I don't ..." I stuttered "I don't need flowers, but" I sniffed, "a card would have been nice." My face wrinkled up in a horrid expression of pure pain and disappointment.

"I'm so sorry, Baby! I mean, I had planned on getting something for you on Monday, but when I had to call the cops on the neighbor (long story) I just lost my day. I couldn't go anywhere!"

"I know," I said, sympathetically. The clock ticked 11:45 pm and I forced back another sob. He had fifteen minutes left. "It's ok. I understand." What struck me as odd was that I DID understand, but I was being incredibly selfish just then. Still, I couldn't help it. I needed to be selfish for a moment.

"No," he corrected himself, "I had time yesterday. I could have done something; anything. I screwed up. I'm sorry." I burst into sobs again, increasingly feeling worse because I knew my crying was making HIM feel worse. I knew he felt bad. I didn't need to give him a guilt trip, too! He's worth more than that to me. Still, I couldn't help it. He had just admitted to me that he just didn't BOTHER to do anything.

I forced myself to calm down and take a deep breath. He held on to me gently and kissed my bare shoulders around the spaghetti strap night gown. Long after he thought I had fallen asleep, he whispered that he was sorry again and finally drifted off to sleep next to me. I laid there crying gently so as not to wake him. Somewhere around 1 in the morning I also drifted off to sleep, but no dreams visited me.

In the morning, the very second I woke up, I jumped out of bed and ran to the bathroom. Immediately I began crying again as if I had a broken heart and I didn't want to wake him. I buried my face in a towel and curled up on the bathroom rug for a few minutes, crying so hard I was shaking. That has to be one of the lowest moments I've had in many, many years. Finally, I cleaned myself up and went back to bed. Pete was awake. He reached out and pulled me to him gently, and I melted into his arms the way I always do, my back to his stomach.

Once Pete thought I was asleep, he got up out of bed and got dressed. It was a little before 7 am and I knew the routine well enough. He would head down to fetch the paper, make some coffee, and read for a few. Not having had the time to clear my thoughts yet, I jumped out of bed and threw on my sweats. My original plan was to go for a run, but half a mile from the house I realized that I didn't know where I was going or how long I would be gone. I left my phone at home by the bed, and left a note on the pillow telling him that I was sorry I had cried, and that I would wash the makeup off of the pillow case when I came back. My original plan was to avoid the house until he had left for work... but that plan changed. I didn't want to be away from him and have the last words exchanged be those of disappointment and sadness when he left for his 12 hour shift. He's better than that. He deserves better from me.

I walked straight to the Pacific Ocean. I stood there on the cliff for a couple of minutes in an isolated area, just watching the waves crash into the rocks. Once more I cried, but it was an accumulation of so many things. The reality of not having a job after finally feeling like I was getting somewhere in this world got to me. The fact that Pete took me for granted hurt me severely. The reality that I may never get married again because of taxes became another factor sitting there high on the cliff. This had been possibly one of the most horrible weeks of my life, and the one person in this world who knows me better than anyone else wasn't there for me on the most romantic day of the year. For a half of a split second, I doubted our relationship. Out of anger, frustration, confusion, sadness, heartbreak, loneliness, and outright fury, I screamed out at the waves and at the world, my voice getting lost on the cliffs of San Pedro. Defeated, I collapsed to my knees with my face burried in my hands and did something I've not done in a very long time. I prayed. I prayed for a long time, and the sobs started to quiet down.

Suddenly, I was ok.
I stood up and walked home, as simple as that.

When I walked into the house, Pete's voice met my ears. He was on the phone.
"Yeah, I still have to sign the papers and stuff. Hey Mom, I gotta go - Amanda just came back." I squinted and shirked a bit, starting to feel really bad that he had been on the phone with his mother long enough to tell her that I had left in the first place. I sat down on the bed.

Pete stood up from the computer. Soft love ballads were coming from the speakers on either side of his Mac Pro. He sat next to me and reached out for me. I fell into his arms once more, and this time it was his turn to cry. I never want to see that again.

"I am so sorry. I never want to hurt you!"

"Pete," I began, bravely, "I think you need to know where my mind was last night." He fell silent, listening carefully to what I had to say. He held me tighter, knowing that I gathered strength from him. "You were being so mysterious for so long," I told him. "I had been wondering for a month what you had planned. You reassured me two weeks ago that you would plan something, you wouldn't just do what your friend Chuck does and pick up a single rose at a 7-11 store on the way home that day. I took that for what it was. I had it all narrowed down. I thought that of all the options out there," I paused only briefly, knowing that if I didn't plow onward, I wasn't going to get it out, "you'd either bring me lingerie or... a ring. When you came home with nothing, I thought to myself that you didn't love me enough to even think about getting a card. I was entirely selfish and I'm sorry."

Pete wiped his eyes just then, but not until a tear dislodged itself from his eye and splashed gently on my shoulder. I held him tight.

"Amanda, my parents know how serious I am about you. They know we're living together, and they know that we are wanting to get married. I have no doubt in my mind that we're going to do what we want to. It may be a hard month for us, and I know it's been a very hard week for you, but I believe we'll be ok."

THAT was all I needed; his reassurance. The visual image of the ocean waves crashing against the cliffs of San Pedro entered my mind again. The steady, dependable, predictable rhythm was always so calming. It was when a storm happened by and the waves grew large and turbulent that the ocean really got interesting. This was just one of those interesting moments in my life when I'm between waves. Is the next wave going to swallow me whole, or will it lift me above everything where I'll have a view of everything from the crest? It doesn't matter. I'll be fine no matter what. I always am.

It's not about rings or chocolates or dinners out or flowers or even clover necklaces. It's about knowing that you can make it through anything in the world if it's truly meant to be.

It's also about knowing when to throw in the towel and realize that it's all one sided.

1 comment:

  1. I'm sorry this Valentines Day didn't work out for you. Us guys can really blow it sometimes. :(


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