He Asked Me to Marry Him
He always talked in his sleep. I knew he was completely out when he asked but I said yes anyway, I kissed it into his sleeping ear and he rolled over and said he loved me. He loved me all the time, not just in his sleep. He said so at the door before he left on a Sunday night to go to his band rehearsal.
I came up with all sorts of reasons why he left me. See, he never came back from the rehearsal to tell me why he never came back from the rehearsal. It was just me and my imagination left. Today I bought his album on iTunes, it came out last week. The tracks have just finished downloading but I won’t hit play.
Instead I’m going to buy expensive sunglasses. My friend came to visit me and she left today and it’s hard when people you love leave. She had nice sunglasses and now I want some. I always use the same joke, about filling the void, for a moment anyway.
We had dinner last night, just my girlfriend and I. I was trying to explain to her that my inner world and external world aren’t at peace. I mean look at this, I said. We looked out to the ocean from the balcony, the sun was setting on one side, a brilliant rainbow on the other, full glasses of Chardonnay and macadamia nut pesto on the table between us. Nothing is really missing, I said.
She said moving here was setting the bar high for myself, comes with pressure to feel a certain way. We drank more wine and talked about the Ouija boards we did when we were barely teenagers. Later on we used to meet for lunch at the only real coffee shop we had in our town, we agreed we never want to eat those oily grilled sandwiches again. We laughed about the summer we backpacked Europe and warm Rose wine and the Irish guys and that terrible music festival, and how I always end up falling for men with the same name as my father.
I’ve been thinking a lot about moments, how we tend to refer to them as short but moments don’t know time. All you get is one moment and it is your life, but often we don’t realize that. I wonder if a moment can ever be enough.
For the longest time it wasn’t enough that I didn’t get to marry him. When I replay it over now it all happens in just a moment. It only took one to fall in love with him. And one for him to leave. Those months and months of moments between are all taking up space in my memory but I won’t touch them. I remember all the words to his songs.
We ordered dessert and talked about my book. I said I’m trying to be okay with this thing taking forever. Art takes time.
My favorite of all the reasons my imagination invented was that he chose his music over me. He left me for his art. He had a devotion to his music that both inspired me and made me jealous. He taught me how to make my art come before anything else. That’s the thing with a love like that, it never leaves. That can be enough.