So This Is What Growing Up Feels Like…

Long talks.
We smile until our cheeks hurt and laugh until there’s stomach cramps.

There are some serious topics that need to be discussed though.
We have been tip toeing around those for awhile with her.
We have talked about it, we have been down that road.
We just wanted to let her take the lead when she was ready to hear and to talk about it all herself.
No pressure.
Just going with it.
That has been our way.
Until last night.
Last night she was ready for more.
More details.
A comment leads to a story, leads to a memory, leads to the serious side.
Maybe a tiny moment of awkwardness but that goes away so quickly I don’t know if she feels it too.
Do I give her the details, do I leave them out, do I remember the details, does he?

I love listening to the conversations.
I’m almost in awe at how alike they are.
I don’t know how I never realized it before.
I sit back and just soak it all in and I am literally amazed.
She said last night “I feel like I’m sitting in front of a mirror.”
The way they talk, the faces they make, the way they tell me to relax.
It’s almost identical.

I can catch the hurt from both of them in some of the stories, in the comments.
I see the glazed over look when something is said that touches them.
There’s hurt.
There’s sadness and regret.
There’s bitterness and even anger.
Of course there would be.
The connection is there though and it’s almost so deep already that the unspoken pain is really spoken.
It’s amazing to watch.
Difficult to put into words.

I would be lying if I said I wasn’t still worried though.
Still worried that there will be an unhappy ending.
Still worried that something might be too much to handle.
As I listen to the stories and even tell my own, I remember.
A story leads to a memory.
Every one of them.
With each conversation I realize how young I was and how much I have forgotten.
Blocked out.
I feel guilty.
I feel bad.
I know it wasn’t just me.
I know in my heart that it was wrong though.
And I can’t go back.
I can’t fix it.
He can’t either.

So we just move.
Forward.
With each story and each memory there are things that no one wants to remember and things that would be amazing to relive again.
New memories are being made and new stories are being created for telling later on.
New relationships are being made.
Being built on top of the old ones.
The young ones.
The influenced ones.
Grown ups doing it the way it should have been done the first time.
Taking control and only allowing in what is OK with us.
Putting her heart first.
Her fragile, damaged, scared but strong heart.
Watching the layers come down, layers that never should have gone up.

The bad memories, those aren’t something we’re choosing to dwell on.
There have been so many “I’m sorry’s” over the past few weeks.
They stopped.
They aren’t necessary.
We can’t live in the past.
The stories will be told.
We will take it as they come.
He knows how sorry I am.
I know how sorry he is.
That doesn’t change a thing.
Moving forward, doing things the right way, for her; that’s what will change things.
That in itself heals everyone.

Everyone.

-S

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