9 december 2008
Today is day 2 of SeliBa (tabaski), day 4 of my Flu and day 152 of desperately missing home, family and ease.
This time last year my life was not easy, far from it. I was fighting to find my self, a struggle one man witnessed and saved me from later on. We’d beet meeting up for casual four hour strolls, flooded with life discussions, trying to truthfully and attractively present ourselves, both holding back inner beauty we were unaware of and both knowing something strange and familiar was there – how, where, when? I was curious but guarded, respectfully questioning him situationally and he was lovely in explaining the rumored “man-in-a-homemade-van-down-by-the-river” story that I had pieced together.
I remember a specific night, one of our first of coffee sips, warm ups and walks. He had just found out that his father had been diagnosed with prostate cancer. I interrupted that phone call and felt guilty for weeks. That same night he walked me home, distant but trying and attentive; he didn’t come inside and I found myself bawling, sleeping on the floor with Zoe moments later, exhausted by love that I knew nothing about.
Questioning myself, both physically and in personality, my parents and friends, Joe and Janna especially, wondering what was up. The mood swings, the crazies, the late night calls. They were adding up to a Sydney that no one recognized, even myself. I found solace and comfort and mental strength in my walks with Zoe. Once, trekking across the Chaffee County Courthouse yard, bleached by 4 inches of fresh snow, colored slightly by the early rising sun, we carelessly came upon a beautiful buck who upon raising his majestic head spotted us and casually stared. All frozen in warm stares, Zoe calm, the buck quiet and me, breathing, alive, able. Upon his swift, graceful departure, leaving only slight snow tracks and memories behind, we returned to the town, walking along the river to the park. There, smiling, glowing, loving, I found Ryan and his then one year old son, ruddy cheeked, playing in the snow – flying in the snow. Precious. Perfect.
With the early morning sight and connection, I had found a bit of my old self. Bold, fearless, I told him I was making some stew and asked if he’d care to join me for dinner. December 12, 2007, we ate, we laughed, we drove, we walked, we gazed, we touched and we kissed. We fell in love. One night. After green chili stew, a meteor shower and an 11 hour date.
Life isn’t easy, anywhere. It sure as hell isn’t here. It wasn’t there, nor was it in Austin. But it is made easier, happier, clearer, as I continue to remind myself: breathe, live, be able. It is made easier, happier, clearer with him – with Ryan. I miss him. But because of his presence in my life, I found me.