TIME TO SAY GOODBYE MY FRIEND

For my readers who have been following the "I Still Look For You" memoir, this is a peek at the final chapter. I don't know of an author who didn't see the end coming to their own story, but this happened to me. I wish tonight that this was a work of Fiction so I could change the ending but my life's story has been true and told in all of it's horror and all of it's beauty. I could not tell this any other way.

Hello dear friend,

It’s been so long since we’ve talked, too long. I have answered the phone a few times and the thought it would be you on the other end entered my mind for a split second and brought my heart to life.

If we could talk, after all of the catching up with news of my kids and grandchildren and yours too, I would want to get down to the subject that has plagued me for over twenty years. Maybe plagued is not a good word, it brings to mind sorrow and pain and though I have felt those emotions, more so, I’ve felt a longing for mornings with you. Over coffee, sharing our lives, hopes, good times and failures there was a prevailing feeling of strength, a need for it and a sharing of it. We had some real challenges back then and the load was lighter because of you and I hope my presence in your life made things not as difficult or lonely as they might have been. I have never been able to thank you for the belief you had in me and taught me to have in myself. Your view of me as being strong and capable, a good mother, desirable woman and as a worthy friend changed my life. I was able to leave a horrible relationship and never want to go back again. I knew, because you taught me, that I deserved so much more than that.

I discovered that it was not too late to love or laugh, to have incredible days filled with true fun and carefree times that we both missed when the time for them was used becoming adults, too early. We each carried responsibilities that were not ours and took on more than we should have had to and in doing so we became a step out of time with people our own ages. Hearing the beat of a different drum is all well and good when it is one’s choice to, but always being a half step ahead or behind makes for a lonely place in your heart. You more than filled that space. You were my best friend, my lover, a confidant who encouraged my dreams and an example of how to keep putting one foot in front of the other when all you want to do is be free.

Our friendship did set me free of notions I’d accepted of myself as not good enough, not pretty enough, just never enough … of anything. The simple pleasures we shared, sitting by the river on a warm afternoon, playing in the leaves like a couple of kids and flying down the highway with the radio cranked, are memories that have sustained me for two decades now. When my life became too ordinary I remembered and felt extraordinary, something I saw reflected in your eyes. When my kids screamed at me that I was a tyrant and they hated me, I remembered that you said time and again that I was a good mother. I doubt that you realize the impact you had on my life. No matter where your life has taken you, or mine taken me, I can always be transported back to a time when a shared cup of coffee and conversation before starting our days was all that it took to get us by. I used to spend hours dreaming of the “what if’s.” If we had met at a different time, if there was not such a gap in our ages, if you didn’t have the responsibility of raising your brothers and I didn’t have two children of my own … but then it was those very things that made our relationship more special and stronger than most people ever have. Despite differences so large, there was a common bond that I have never shared with another person in my life. I have loved, yes, and I have found happiness and contentment but I have never felt exactly the magic that we shared. They were simple times, but so full of complications. A seeming contradiction, but it was not. We were just living, trying to bring our respective kids along the road of growth that we still needed to complete and making the most of what had been handed us.

The respect and gentleness that you showed toward me was a truly needed gift that has had no equal. You taught me to trust myself and my abilities and assumed I would be victorious. Your confidence in me began to grow in my opinion of myself and has carried me through many years of trials. Do you remember when you taught me to drive a stick in your friend’s 280z? How I shifted just right but forgot to turn left as you’d instructed and you told me how good I did and then broke out in laughter saying that next time I could also turn the wheel? Then we stopped for gas and you told me I looked so good sitting in that car. You taught me with patience, something no one in my life had ever done and you saw me as deserving, not only a nice car but things that made me happy and brought me pleasure, just because.

I wonder many times if you ever think of me and if so, if those memories shadow mine in any way. I selfishly hope that you have missed me from time to time. I hope that you are happy and that the woman you’ve married appreciates you and wraps you in love and security. Her picture on the internet shows a very pretty woman, young for her years. I laughed when I saw that she is ten years your senior. I guess my age really didn’t make a difference to you, as it did to me. I have searched for and found you, at least I have found your wife, but she does not respond to my requests to have you call, or you choose not to. I almost can’t believe that you would not, unless it would cause problems. I would never want that. I have questions that won’t be answered now after all these years of searching. I have no way of knowing if my messages have reached you but I have to believe that they have. The silence is deafening and painful, it confuses me and fills me with questions. Why wouldn’t you call? Do you have nothing to say to me? Has time made such a difference that our friendship is not worthy of a phone call? Would it upset your wife and you won’t chance that? My husband knows I have searched for you and knows what our friendship has meant to me and he does not have concerns. No matter the reason, the time has come that I need to say goodbye to you. If I would have ever thought finding you would cause such pain, I would have left the memories alone to be taken down from the shelf like a favorite book and enjoyed all over again.

I have lost some good friends in the past few years which started me searching for you. I never got the chance to say thank you, tell you what the time we shared meant to me or to say a proper goodbye. It is hard to do that, knowing you are out there and that just hearing your voice would be such a lovely thing for me. Knowing that we could still share a friendship and talk over coffee, long distance though it would be, seems like so little to ask but I know there are times in one’s life when nothing else is needed or will fit.

I drag my feet, not wanting to let go. It could be worse, I suppose. You could have called and told me to leave you alone, that you barely remember me or that I was foolish to reach out a hand of friendship. I would rather keep the slimmest chance open in my mind that you did not get my message. Well, goodbye then, have a wonderful life. I wish you happiness and much love. I can not find the proper words. I guess I just want you to know how much having you in my life meant to me and to let you know that what you did saved my life and helped me find love and peace. Thank you for being my friend.

For Bobby. always

Comments 11 comments

LaurieDawn profile image

LaurieDawn 5 years ago

That was so touching, sad in a way, but then again saying goodbye always is to a loved one. I hope someday he reads that letter because there are your emotions raw upon the pages, and I can feel how special he was in your life, and how he has impacted you and that will always be treasured. It brought tears to my eyes, because of the pain but yet the beauty. Thank you for sharing that with us, that special type of friendship that we all long for in life.

Blessings and a great big hug,

Laurie


SomewayOuttaHere profile image

SomewayOuttaHere 5 years ago from TheGreatGigInTheSky

...i'm sure he remembers...how could he not?...it's hard to forget love, good times and bad times....


stars439 profile image

stars439 5 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

A very beautifully written letter. Wonderful in every way. God Bless You Dear Heart.


jami l. pereira 5 years ago

Sad yet beautiful , astounding ! voted up awesome and beautiful thanks for the read ! :)


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 5 years ago from On the edge Author

Thank you so much jami. We seem to have a lot in common, I believe, from reading some of your hubs. There you are in Texas too! Mt Pleasant, TX is where this friend's wife is and I guess he would be too. I don't know because I still have never heard from him. Whether he has ever received my message is still a mystery. I did receive a reply to my face book message claiming to be him but unless his vocabulary and manner of speaking has changed 180 degrees, I am still in doubt it was really from him. I only wanted him to know the importance his friendship meant in my life but I do understand if the message has not made it's way to him ...


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 5 years ago from Minnesota

What a powerful letter Pooh. I am feeling sad that you have not heard from him. Do you wonder if the wife just wont tell him as she is insecure or something? I hope that is all it is and that some day you can reconnect with your old flame. God Bless :-)


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 5 years ago from On the edge Author

Happy Birthday Bobby - how I wish I could just pick up the phone and say that to you.

@M Twin - This being his birthday, 11/11/11 - how about that? - I re-visited this hub ... I'm not sure why. There is no flame left ... ha ha ha, maybe a small burning ember, but the silence is still deafening. I am incurably curious about life in general and this mystifies me, but then it could be that I just value the people that are and have been in my life more than most do. At any rate, I missed your comment and I wanted to thank you for reading and for caring enough to share your thoughts.


Levertis Steele profile image

Levertis Steele 4 years ago from Southern Clime

I know the feeling of loving someone who has moved on and giving no return of love. Unless you want to be hurt again, it is better to move on and not reach back for what has obviously rejected you. He could come back to you, have a fling for pity's sake, and disappear. You won't know pain until that happens. Do not invite it. It is a viper! It is dangerous. That kind of pain has caused many a person to kill.

When we hurt, we think about ourselves only, although we do not mean to be selfish. If he married another, that was his choice. No woman in her right mind would pass on a message to her husband from someone in his past, especially if she senses that the woman still has some attachments. She has a marriage to nourish, and judging from the love you seem to have for this man, you would have him in a minute if he makes a move.

In my distant past, I had a male acquaintance who expressed a desire to be closer than we were. Actually, we had recently met, and he was moving too fast and doing too much. He offered too much too soon--I mean large amounts of money and promises of more. We hardly knew each other; we certainly were not intimate, yet he acted as if he was obsessed ?? This frightened me. I refused his money and got away from him. He kept calling and really annoyed me. He was too invasive. This attitude would send anyone running.

Hanging on alone is so lonely, and you certainly deserve better. Your husband deserves more respect than you are giving him. He is too patient and understanding. Watch out before you lose him. Men do not need much to make an excuse for an affair. You are giving him the best one available. That green grass you see over that fence could be gaul.

Do something special for your husband. Cook him a special candlelight meal and tell him how much you love and appreciate him, and I hope you do. Be good to this man, and pray for a sweetness that will make you forget a man who is traveling in another direction. You could very well find that what you were chasing is right under your roof!

When I stopped clinging to a phantom lover (in my first paragraph), I began to heal and I found a love that made me forget all of the time wasted.

Please do not let anyone persuade you to find this man. If they were in this man's wife's shoes, they would not want the searching woman to connect with their husbands. Forget this man. Is he looking for you? Isn't he married? Couldn't he have come back to you if he wanted? Save yourself some pain and turn the other way. I hope you do not find this man because, for one, he is married. Secondly, I fear you will get hurt. If you do find him and you to get married, not likely, you both will have to live with the guilt of cheating and taking another woman's husband. I have seen it too many times. Such marriages usually do not last. Guilt is like a cancer. It eats slowly, but surely. Be a wise owl and hoot somewhere else, preferably, at home. You deserve better than another married man. You have one of your own. Be happy, and I wish you well.


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 4 years ago from On the edge Author

Levertis, you wrote,"I know the feeling of loving someone who has moved on and giving no return of love. Unless you want to be hurt again, it is better to move on and not reach back for what has obviously rejected you. He could come back to you, have a fling for pity's sake, and disappear. You won't know pain until that happens. Do not invite it. It is a viper! It is dangerous. That kind of pain has caused many a person to kill."

I am truly sorry that you experienced that type of pain and from your last statement it's clear you are still wounded from rejection.

The time that this young man and I had was so much more about friendship than being lovers, I wish I had been able to write of it in a way that showed this more clearly. My desire was never about getting him back or having an affair, but only to connect with someone who had a profound effect on my life so many years ago. Perhaps if I had worked this in to the, "I Still Look For You," series, it would have made more sense to the reader.

I do appreciate your time spent reading and I thank-you for giving me a different perspective so that when this is all gathered up and put into book form it will be in a much better format.


Ellen Karman profile image

Ellen Karman 4 years ago from medina, Ohio

I got the point that he was a good friend that helped you gain confidence in your life and had a profound affect on you, I'm sure he remembers you fondly. It's hard when we loose a close friend. I have moved so many times and the last time I couldn't even say good bye and I warned my friends of this. maybe his wife, is insecure and didn't pass the message on. I would put my money on that but, also others have made good points, be thankful of the time you spent with him and learned from him and move on keeping those qualities he taught you. I hope all good things come to you, Ellen Karman


leni sands profile image

leni sands 3 years ago from UK

Truly good friends are so hard to come by. You trust your all to them, they know everything about you and remain close, supportive, encouraging - saying goodbye to your 'soul mate' is the hardest thing to do. I have known this kind of relationship - a purely platonic relationship but with a strength of a truly loving relationship. That's what best friends do! Then best friends find 'lovers' and eventually marry - unfortunately the new partner cannot understand the closeness between the two of you, feel threatened and insecure. Letting go is the best move forward.

A truly heart felt and emotive letter, voted up awesome and beautiful.

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