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  • Writer's pictureeschaden


What do I know of it really? Sometimes it seems like I know nothing at all. Then still, other times, I am engulfed by it, set aflame by it, occupied, possessed, controlled, stoked by the very flames that can and might consume me momentarily.

I have written (likely several times now) about all the different forms of love, but today I do not distinguish between the species of love. Love is simply love. That of a mother for her child, of a woman for her man, of a person with a, simply put, is still love.

I am in the throws of a multitude of life career, new love interest, new parental relationships, new self love, it appears, but isn’t real, that my life is surrounded by old love persevering, and new love landing. But really, what I feel most, is just that love is what saves me and almost kills me at the same time.

I didn’t write yesterday, and I didn’t because I was just too emotional after my son’s visit home. He is back in Alaska now, mercifully for both of us. He began his first day of his senior year, leaving to a new school, from not my home. He will not return here to my home, perhaps again, ever. He is gone. And I was barely hanging on.

He has done a lot of leaving over the past few years. Lots of times, sometimes being forced, other times, he went willingly, grateful for the promise of greener grass...I am not sure he has ever found that grass, but believes it exists anyway.

The home visit did not go well for him, so it did not go well for me. I felt mostly good about my behavior, not too triggered, not to PTSDy, but that was not his experience. He was triggered, and completely consumed by his historic responses to me, our relationship and dynamic. I so wish it were better, but I am me, and he is him and therein lies the bulk of the problem...

I am so saddened about where we are, not speaking. But also grateful for the reprieve from more angry, mean words heaped on what feels like a lifetime of unfairness piled onto us. I kept my cool, he did not, and we both are more damaged than we were before he came.

I have long suspected that he came home just to get things from me: gifts, trips, excursions, meals. This time confirmed it. He spent as little time as possible with me, and then wrote a script where I wasn’t available, which was not true. I didn’t fight him on his script, after all, it wasn’t mine to correct, since I am not the author, just a character in his...

So now we are estranged, love remains, at least I think it does, I mean I know it does for me. He is my child, I will always love him, but I am not sad that he is gone. Not sad that he isn’t coming back. I am grateful for the reprieve and now with no communication, I am unsure where to put the love I feel still. What do you do with the love, when it becomes unmoored from its object?

I have wandered through the last two days adrift, shaken, barely conscious and alert to all that is going on around me. I am sad and scared and tired and confused. How my behavior could be so misconstrued, I only love him and that gets transmuted into whatever he experiences...which I am pretty sure doesn’t really feel like love to him.

I love him still. Just like I love still the people who have been removed from life, I love them from a safe where I feel safe enough to speak my truth, and one where they are saved from my love overspray. And that is how I will look at the silence that pours in from Alaska, where he begins his new life, that, at least for now, doesn’t include mine.

And I love him still, and I feel it still, and I send it still. Always, because love is not something that is negotiable...when I love someone, I just do. Love them...even when they might not be good for me, or I for them, love cares not a lot about the things we humans insist upon: good matches, ideals, life stations, love is just there, supporting, winding its way through your life, and pulling those close to me, even as some are removed from my daily experience, daily existence, and others still move closer to me. The love remains, because that is what love does. It exists in spite of evidence to the contrary, for all the good reasons to not love, for all the peril involved in loving someone. Love is just there for me, buckets and buckets of love I feel and spill all over the place, never really sure where to direct it or even if I should ever be in charge of such things...

I guess, my job, now and always is just to love anyway. The people who come into my orbit, the people who I gave birth to, the partners I have lived with and among. Love is what remains, after it quits hurting.

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