I can’t forgive you. Even if I could
You wouldn’t pardon me for seeing through you.
And yet I cannot cure myself of love
For what I thought you were before I knew you.
Sad Sunday morning. The baby is at Mum and Dads and my mouth is a gash of purple berries after a lovely little wedding. A wedding that kind of made me want to cry.
I can’t wake up. So I run down the stairs in the nightie with the broken strap, clutching it to my chest and hoping the church-goers are still eating breakfast when I nip into the porch to grab the Sunday papers. I throw a tray laden with pretty things together. Madagascan vanilla yoghurt in a tiny little blue spotty sugar bowl. Two tangerines peeled and piled on a gilt edged plate and a huge rose strewn cup filled with boiling water and slices of lime…
I carry it back up the stairs and bury myself under the blankets. Supplements everywhere and the rosy glow of one of my lamps fooling me into thinking everything will be alright.
Nobody told me it would be so hard to be a grown up. Nobody said that some mornings I would forget to hate him and miss him like hell. That I wouldn’t mind the fact that he was probably lying beside his Nicky, if only he would ring me and tell me everything will be alright. Wrap my fragile little heart up in sellotape and stand once again between me and the rest of the world.
You get used to a person you see. The stupid things they say and the way they idly stroke your leg while you watch Coronation Street. The fact that they can never look on the bright side but will aways be there to help you see it when times are hard. A look that says, you’ve gone too far. Be careful.The memories you share. The hopes and dreams you used to have. And your babba. Most of all your babba.
We are friends now. Still family. Brother and sister. We sit companionably with too many cups of tea and laugh about everything we have always laughed at. He wipes the filthy window of his car with my favorite Cath Kidston tea-towel and I remember why I don’t want him back. That he doesn’t care and he never did.
He says "I can’t move on till I know you are ok with this."
I say, "How is she? Does she make you happy? Are you ok? Really ok? Cause I like my life without you Mark, I really do."
Occasionally I touch his face. Worry about him. Love him like I brought him up and watched him fly the nest. Wish for only good things for him. For the kind of happiness I know is waiting around the corner for me. Because he will never live here again. Sunday mornings aren’t what they used to be and we are not who we were. And except for moments of self doubt, when I am aching for something I can’t have right now, when I ‘m scared of wanting too much, more than I deserve probably, a whole new england, it hardly matters .
Once as he was leaving, he turned around and hugged me. A quick strange unfamiliar kind of hug. "I did this for both of us you know?" he said.
And I smiled. And leaned into him and said "I know and I’m grateful."
Because I am. Sunday mornings will never be the same but he has given me the possibility of a a life less ordinary, and the chance to be with somebody who makes me want to be a better me, and for that I will always be grateful.
Don’t think me strange. Or stupid. I just loved him. But now I understand that we came undone for a reason.