Thursday, May 31, 2012


Morning came into the room slowly. As it did, the memories of the night before came creeping back.  "Maybe we're over, then."  Had he really said those words?  Had I imagined them?  Had I dreamed them? I reached a hand to the place beside me where his sleeping body should be, but there was nothing.  His side of the bed was  empty, completely untouched.

I sat up, twisting the ring on my finger slowly. It hadn't been a dream.  The bed was empty. He was gone. The shards of glass from the vase I'd thrown at the wall after his retreat were still strewn about the floor. It had all happened.  The clothes thrown in a suitcase. The car revving up and roaring away down the street. The crying and the throwing things and the wine.

I got out of bed, gingerly jumping over the glass, and pulled a ratty old sweatshirt out of my closet.  It was the kind of thing you love because it's comfortable and homey and warm, but your mother always threatens to throw away.  Padding downstairs, I made a cup of coffee and wandered around our living room.

First, the pink rose on the mantel.  Made of fine glass, he had brought it home from a business trip to Vienna. "It reminded me of you," was what he had said. "Delicate and beautiful and just waiting to be opened."

Turning, I met the my eyes in the mirror hanging on the wall.  On the day we bought it, we had strolled through the antique shop, our fingers entwined. "Oh, that is beautiful," I had whispered when I saw it.  As we admired the craftsmanship, he had murmured his agreement.  As he spoke, he stood behind me, sweeping my hair away from my neck, and trailed kisses down my skin.  I was pretty sure that he hadn't meant the mirror.

Even while I shushed him under the stern gaze of the shop's owner, I had turned in his embrace, wrapping my arms around his neck and pulling him closer.  After the mirror's delivery, we'd propped it against a wall in our bedroom and made love in front of it every night for a week before eventually finding it a place in the living room. I stood on the chair in front of it now, my fingers trailing along its frame.  Were those people gone now?

My heart stilled when I heard the key turn in the lock. Maybe he'd come back to retrieve more clothes.  The door closed, and I turned to meet his gaze.  The rain outside had soaked through his clothes. Had he walked home?  His shirt clung to his chest, and the water ran down his face from his hair.  But, he didn't seem to notice any of it.  He spoke just two words.  "I'm sorry."

I nodded.  In two steps, he pulled me from the chair.  His arms held me tight, his lips found mine.  And in that that moment, I knew. There would be forgiveness and there would be renewed faith and there would be trust. And always there would be love.

That's what it was.