Come Bother Me

Before I begin my next prose, I would like to say that it is not about any one person in particular. I am a writer, it is what I do.

It takes the smallest of sparks to make my pen quiver. It could be a song that I heard or the memory of a feeling I had long ago. And on occasion it will relate to something that I am experiencing. Although, that is not always the case.

I find that I feel things on such a deep level that just about anything can spawn a moment of connection with the written word.

For example, I watched the sweetest movie last night; The Choice. From the author of The Notebook, it is another beautiful story about the courage it takes to love someone.

And the rewards we receive by never giving up. It is a total chick flick yes, but not the typical run of the mill love story. It is one about hope and connection to something beyond ourselves.

There are two lines in the movie that  inspired the words you are about to read.

The first, “Come bother me baby.”

A simple phrase, but it says so much. I think we have all had that person at one time or another in our lives that has bugged us to no end!

And not in the way that a child bothers their mother, but rather that person that for reasons beyond your understanding just gets under your skin…and you kind of like it.

You don’t want to like it, but you do.

It is as though there is an internal struggle happening between your mind and your soul. Your mind is telling you they are bad news, but your soul is telling you that they are the one.

The best relationships I have had were the ones that were less than perfect. I don’t want someone who is going to bend the knee. A man who will cave the minute a tear rolls down my face.

I want someone who challenges me, someone who gets under my skin, knocks me out of my comfort zone and forces me to be vulnerable.

Part of building a life together is about growing with one another. It is seeing the potential in someone and wanting nothing more than for them to see it too.

The other line from the movie that stuck with me was, “There is no shame in being a broken man. You just pick up the pieces and start putting your life back together.”

We are all weak at times and we all have felt broken.

In these moments of our lives, we must turn to hope and that inner voice telling us where to go next. In my opinion, that is why meditation is so important.

In times when I feel lost or broken if you will, I meditate.

It is a way to calm my mind and allow that inner voice to be heard above the noise of overthinking.

You see, I believe we are all part of a much greater purpose. The plans of which can not be understood from within the constructs of or current world.

We must instead, take a leap of faith and follow our hearts. Trusting our inner guidance to show us the way. Many times the path may be of great challenge and at times painful, but it is all necessary.

For living in a place of fear will only leave one feeling lonely and unfulfilled. Sometimes we need to take the plunge in order to find great clarity on the other side of pain.

Keeping yourself closed off from love may seem like the best course of action in preventing heartache, but I can tell you from experience that it is not.

You are not keeping yourself safe, you are setting yourself up for a life that is filled with a great deal more disappointment and struggle than any failed attempt at love.

In the process of building those walls, you are not just keeping everyone else out. You are severing the connection between your heart and mind. Mark my words…eventually, you will lose yourself. I did.

And coming back from that was more painful than anything I have ever felt.

And on that note, here is my poem about no one in particular.

I knew it was you.

From the moment you looked at me in that way.

As though you were bathing in my soul.

Awakening a part of me that I was not sure I wanted to be disturbed.

It bothered me

They way you knew me.

I knew that you could see me

And I was not quite ready to be seen.

Something in my heart assured me

That this was it.

The love I had been searching for all my life.

Surely I was not worthy…

Of the way you loved.

Without condition

For all that I am.

My faults

My mistakes

And the scars on my heart.

I could see it then

That you

You would forgive them all.

And then it occurred to me

I have never known a love like that.

Undeniably strong

And unwavering.

A love that would surely break me

Should it ever go away.

I decided it would be easier

To run away and hide.

To push you away

And refuse to believe

That it could ever work out.

But it wouldn’t go away.

The harder I pushed

And the further I ran

The more I felt it

Pulling at my heart.

Until I caved.

Wanting nothing more than you

Against my better judgement

I came to you.

Vulnerable and scared

I let go.

Over taken by passion

We became one

As I knew we would.

And when it was over

I felt more fear

Than I had ever thought possible.

Until the idea of losing you

Became my only motivation.

And so I ran

Once again

I ran.

Far away from the possibility of regret

Or so I thought.

Surely I was not worthy…

Of the way you loved.

Without condition

For all that I am.

But something in my heart

Just wouldn’t let you go.

It was undeniable

You and I

And as much as I wanted to believe

It would all fall apart

In the deep recesses of my soul

There was no doubt

That it would all work out.

You awoke something in me

Something I wasn’t sure should be disturbed.

It bothered me

The way you knew me

Like no one else.

The undeniable knowing

That you were the one.

The realization

That all I really wanted

Was for you to bother me

For the rest of my life.

 

Life is too short and our time on this earth unknown. For that reason alone, I beg of you all to put fear aside and follow your hearts. And when you fall, pick yourself right back up again and keep going.

Only you have the power to change your life and wouldn’t you rather risk the heart break if there was a possibility of finding true happiness? If you have ever been in love and I mean real love, then you know…it really is worth it.

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I Beg Your Pardon

In the split of a moment

I felt you

Leaning into me

Frightened and trembling

With the passion

Of a thousand love songs

But I

I asked you for nothing

And you

Just for a moment

You gave me your world

I know it’s scary

Promising someone your life

Even now

From within the darkness of regret

But I never asked you for that

I never asked you to let go

In the past

All I ever wanted was you

Your love

I lived in the possibilities

Of all that could have been

And then

I let it all go

Moved on

With the understanding

That it was just not meant to be

You may be no Prince Charming

No Savior

Riding steady on your stallion

Charging in to win my heart

I know that you are broken

Wound by a love

That left you far behind

But for me

You

You were my only regret

I should have handled things differently

Living with the pieces of us

And still

I crave you

Not as before

This feeling…

This feeling is new

From within this moment

No strings attached

Just your skin

upon my skin

Telling secrets in the dark

No emotions to answer to in the morning

No one here to change our minds

You see

I have come to the conclusion

That you and I

In the amazing moments of us

Would stand strong

So strong

But we always end up here

Drowning beneath the broken possibilities

You and I

We could have been something

But I

I set that aside

No love allowed I told you

Just you and I

In the heat of the moment

Filling the voids

Within our hearts

But still

Still you ran

Taking my breath away

Although not like before

It’s different now

This sadness I hold

For it is no longer my own

But rather

For you

And

How broken you choose to be

For A Moment

Sometimes I feel as though I was not meant for this world

But rather a lonely spectator

Watching in the shadows 

As the lives of others pass me by

Perhaps in another time

Or another place

Somewhere between tomorrow and today

I am lost

wandering alone 

among the mysteries of the universe

For a moment today

It felt like home

His touch

His voice

The way my name 

Rolled gently from his lips

My knees quivering

My heart pounding in my chest

I wanted to tell him then

How I craved his skin

That feeling of passion

I only felt with him

 For a moment 

I felt as though I belonged

And just like that

It was gone 

Inspired Action

In anticipation for the revival, I went back and watched Roseanne from start to finish (Ya, it took a while!). I just watched the last episode.

It was exactly what I needed at the exact moment I needed it.

I forgot how powerful her final monologue was, especially the end.

When it 1st aired, I was barely a teenager, dabbling with the idea of someday becoming a famous writer from a very small town much like, if not exactly the same as, the fictional town of Lanford, IL.

Say what you will about Roseanne, I know it is not everyone’s cup of tea, but this show was a staple in my life. It may not have been as wholesome as Family Matters or Full House, but not everyone’s life was wholesome. Especially not mine.

In the midst of my dysfunction, it was a comfort (although fictional) that not every family was quote on quote normal, but it didn’t matter as long as there was love.

Lately, I have been struggling to find the inspiration to finish the next chapter of my memoir. And then today, I heard this…coincidence? I think not 🙂

Roseanne – Final Monologue – May 20, 1997 (an excerpt)

“…In choosing life I realized that my dreams of being a writer wouldn’t just come true I had to do the work. and as I wrote about my life I relived it and whatever I didn’t like I rearranged. I made a commitment to finish my story, even if I had to write in the basement in the middle of the night while everyone else was asleep.

But the more I wrote the more I understood myself and why I had made the choices I made and that was the real jackpot

I learned that dreams don’t work without action
I learned that no one can stop me but me
I learned that love is stronger than hate

And most important I learned that god does exist and he and/or she is right inside you.
Underneath the pain,
the sorrow,
and the shame.

I think I’ll be a lot better now that this book is done.”

Her last sentence reminded me of how cleansed I felt when I finished Insane Roots. It was like a therapy session of my own making and I think that is why I am struggling so much with the second book.

There are things I experienced during that time that up until now I was not ready to deal with. Pain buried so deep, I had almost forgotten it was there. Or at the very least, grown accustom to its sting.

Revisiting those memories, means the opening of old wounds and breaking down walls it took years to build.

But it also means healing. A necessary process in moving forward. And maybe someday, moving on.

The person you all know today is not the girl in the pages of Insane Roots, nor is she the struggling teenager in the chapters yet to come. She is the woman who survived them.

And I think it’s time to finish her story.

 

One Way Road: a short story.

Today was like any other day for Samson, except for the fact that today was the day that he had decided to tell Rachel how he really felt about her.

It was around 7 pm, when he decided to drive his old rusty pick up truck over to her apartment. He had pumped himself up for it all day at work, but now that he was executing his plan,  he was starting to have second thoughts.

Talking out loud to himself on the way over, he practiced his lines, “Listen Rachel, there is something I have to tell you,”

Too serious, he thought.

Maybe I should just be blunt, “Rachel, I love you!”

“Yeah, right”, he laughed, “she would flip out.”

Rachel was the type of girl who disapproved of even the word love. There had been a time in her life when she wasn’t so jaded, but heartbreak wore her thin and now she shuttered at the thought.

She was actually engaged once. They were together four years, but after she caught him cheating, the marriage was cancelled. She was never the same.

She would always say, “The only person I will ever love is myself. I’m the only person worth my time.” Samson knew it was just her way of avoiding the potential of  another painful break-up.

Over time she became the mysterious type, never had much of anything positive to say and refused to cloth herself in anything but black. Her explanation was that she felt bright colors to be “camouflage for her dark soul.”

But she wasn’t always this way. There was a time when the light in her eyes shined so brightly it could light up the room. Even now, if one were to look hard enough they would see a tiny glimmer of a spark hiding behind the scars of the past and the fear of moving on.

That is when he first fell for her.

They met through mutual friends in high-school, but never really spent much time getting to know one another. After graduation, she moved out west on a quest to find herself and he stayed behind and hooked up with his first love. She left him broken and bruised. A state he thought he would never recover from.

Until he ran into Rachel some years later. She was back visiting from one of her many adventures and just happened to show up at a party hosted by Sam’s best friend. The moment she walked through the door, he felt something he never thought possible again. How had he not noticed it before…the way her eyes sparkled when she smiled, the warmth that ran through his body when she laughed. Her nearness to him felt like home.

They spent the rest of the night side by side. Sharing stories of the past and all their future plans. She left that Sunday, not to return for another three years, when she considered herself ‘found’ and moved back to the town where it all begin.

It had taken eight years for him to muster up enough courage to tell her how he felt and for how long. He wasn’t sure how she would react, but he had to get it off his chest.

Pulling into the parking lot, his hands began to shake as his loyal mutt, now hanging his head out of the passenger window began barking.

“Gunner hush!” He scorned at the little pup. Gunner gave him a whimper of disapproval and began barking again.

Sam opened his door and took his first step onto the scalding summer pavement. He looked the same as usual, wearing black jeans and a white t-shirt just tight enough to show off his nipple piercings, something he was very proud of! His sleeves were rolled up in order to compliment his muscular arms and to serve as a place to hold his smokes. Rachel always teased him about that, “What? Do you think your as cool as James Dean or something?” she would squawk.

His long black hair was swept up in a tousled bun and a rugged goatee fit itself strategically around the metal skull piercing in his chin. As he opened the door for Gunner, his legs began to shake. This was it, the moment of truth.

He and Gunner walked up the driveway slowly, Sam’s stomach at his feet.

There was a large evergreen tree blocking the view of Rachel’s door until just before you reached it, so he took this time to psyche himself up in case she happened to be outside.

He knocked on the door quietly as to almost avoid her actually answering it, as he heard her yell, “Just a sec Sam!”

When the door finally opened, he found himself speechless.

He wasn’t sure if it was the build up from the ride over or the fact that in just a few moments everything could change, but in that moment she was more beautiful than she had ever been before. She was breathtaking, her long brown hair was pulled back in sheer chaos and the makeup around her eyes looked darker than usual, although her porcelain complexion may have helped to exaggerate it. She was wearing a low cut black tank top and skirt that just barely covered her knee-high army boots.

“Hey Sammy” She said with a monotone grin. “I see you brought Gunner, I swear you never go anywhere without that mutt!”

Samson shrugged and said, “Rachel, we need to talk.”

“Well come in you idiot, I’m not stand’n out here all day!”

Samson gulped, his stomach located a bit more uncomfortably now in his chest. He knew that the next time he walked through this door his life would be changed and the scariest part of it all was that he didn’t know if it would be for the better or for the worse. But he couldn’t keep living in silence anymore, so he put fear aside and followed Rachel inside.

Her apartment was as dark and dreary as usual, the radio playing some Gothic medley in the background and he noticed that Rachel seemed a bit edgy.

“What’s your problem Sam? Your making me nervous. Hit this and chill out,” she said as she playfully glared at him and handed him a freshly packed bowl.

Smoking pot was Rachel’s answer to everything. She considered it the cure for any ailment big or small and she exercised her beliefs daily!

Samson took the pipe and began lighting it. Wondering if it was still a good idea, he filled the chamber and cleared it. As he exhaled, he reminded himself that he would have to say something soon, before the drug took hold of his courage.

“Rachel, we have known each other for a long time right?”

“Are you trying to get to something Sam, cause you’re sure taking forever!”

“Just hush and lemme say this, smoke another and chill out.”

Rachel glared at him with her big green eyes, fiddled with the black choker around her neck for a minute and cashed out the pipe. “Okay, I’m waiting!”

“Would you just stop? I’m tryin’ to tell you something important! Why do you always have to be such a bitch?!”

“Screw you Sammy, you have no right to say that. You’re the one being an idiot. I don’t really give shit what you have to say!”

“Yeah well, I don’t have anything to say now, I was mistaken!”

“No one could love a self-centered bitch like you anyway, forget it”, he muttered.

“What did you say? Please tell me you didn’t use the L word in my presence. You know I hate that shit.”

“Well forget I said anything! I didn’t mean it anyway! It’s the pot talking”.

“No, you said something alright. What the hell are you tryin’ to say?”

And before he could stop himself, he blurted, “I love you Rachel! I always have, but I can see now that it is not even worth it”.

Rachel put her head down and began fiddling with her necklace again. “Ugh, you are so dramatic. I need a cigarette!” she huffed.

“Well then I’m leaving, good-bye Rachel!” Samson yelled and stormed towards the door. Gunner followed, but the door slammed before he could make it through.

Rachel dropped her head and covered her face with her hands.

Then suddenly, something inside of her snapped, the levy broke. Emotions she had fought for years to keep buried deep within her soul began rushing to the surface! The bricks and mortar she had pieced together around her heart, crumbled at her knees.

Not sure what to do, she peeled her hands from her face and looked up to see Gunner staring up at her. She smiled.

“Come on Gunner, let’s go after him!”

The amount of enthusiasm in her voice startled the dog, but once the door was open, he was outside faster than Rachel could move out of the way! Spinning backwards to avoid him, she laughed and turned to close the door.

She walked down the driveway slowly, her stomach at her feet.

Thinking she was quite clever, as she passed the evergreen she yelled, “Sam! You forgot your damn dog!

But it was too late. He was already gone. It was just Gunner, sitting in the tire tracks he left behind.

She knew he’d be back eventually. It wasn’t like this was the first time they had argued.

Besides, she thought to herself, he loves me! She smiled, and…I love him.

“Come on Gunner! Let’s go call that goofball and tell him he forgot you!” She laughed.

She didn’t know it then, but this very moment would be the one that defined the rest of her life. It would be the moment that changed her. The one she would come to lean on for comfort in the days to come.

It would be the day she learned to love again, but it would also be the day she lost the love of her life.

When Sam stormed out of the apartment that day, all he could think about was getting as far away from Rachel as fast as possible. Far away from the rejection, the disappointment and the embarrassment of the last few minutes. Tears rolled down his face, his foot pressing harder and harder on the gas pedal with every sob. He drove and drove and drove until he was clear across town.

It was getting dark now and the familiarity of his surroundings was fading. He had no idea where he was going, but it was away from her so it was fine with him.

And then he realized, he forgot Gunner!

“Damn it!” he yelled as he hit the steering wheel with his fist. “I am going to have to go back and see her.

The tears started again…but…I want to see her again. There is nothing else I want more. What the hell? He thought as he laughed at himself.

Turning the car around now, he decided he would find the nearest interstate, drive back to her as fast as he could and demand she hear him out!

It was raining now and there was construction everywhere! Where was he? How long had he been driving? And then he spotted it!

Through the glaring lights of oncoming traffic, there it was, the sign for I75!

He cranked the wheel, slammed on the gas and in an instant, he was gone.

When the news came, it was from Rachel’s sister, Sarah. She and Sam’s best friend married a few years after the party where Sam first fell for Rachel. Sarah always knew how Sam felt and she also knew that Rachel felt the same way about him, though she would never admit it.

Sarah also knew that this was the kind of news you deliver in person and she worried that this may be something of which Rachel would never recover.

And although it did not break her fully, there was a certainly a piece of Rachel that died along side him that day.

However, what he left her with was so much more. It was not just the courage to love again, but the knowledge that tomorrow is not promised to any of us.

Had it not been for fear, the two of them may have had a love story like none other or maybe not.

Her greatest loss was that now, she will never know.

 

 

“If we deny love that is given to us, if we refuse to give love because we fear pain or loss, then our lives will be empty, our loss greater.” – Oprah Winfrey