Posts Tagged With: heartbreak

I’m Learning to Let Go

I've Learned to Let Go

I’m learning to let go. It’s hard.  Every time I’ve ever walked away from someone or something, left a relationship, lost a loved one, or watched my children leave to find their own way in this world, it takes a piece of me. What I’m learning I grieve most is not often the familiarity or the presence, but the dreams that were dreamed, the hopes that held deep in my heart, and the love that was attached to that person or thing or place.  I think that’s why when it comes to my children – their growing up and moving on is bitter-sweet, because the hope that’s wrapped up with them is still possible, it’s within their independence and journey in life.  But, losing someone to death, disease, divorce or a break-up leaves a huge hole in my soul.

I’m learning to let go.  It’s complicated.  I don’t like giving up on myself or on people I love and care about.  Often though I fall into an unhealthy situation when my hope and love for them begins to effect and become destructive to me. I hate losing. I’m the biggest optimist in the world, even when my mouth is often filled with Doubt.  I struggle, because my heart, my mind, my experience, my common sense will often scream one thing – yet Optimism and Hope will be in war with those thoughts.  I’m sometimes wrong, and someone or something will surprise me and turn out for the better and Hope will celebrate.  But, the realist inside me – the one who carried the pain, the scars, the doubts, and the cautious pessimism – hates to be right because she understands that when she’s right she damages hope and optimism.  She fears she may one day find they no longer have the strength to rise again as they have so many times before.

I’m learning to let go.  It’s devastating. I’ve searched my whole life to be loved and wanted.  But, those are the two things that have escaped me most.  I’m damaged.  I’m broken.  I’m sometimes still that little girl crying out to God trying to understand why I suffer, why I’m hated and hurt so much from the people who are supposed to love me, why my own parents and children have rejected me.  I let them go, but I always held out hope they would someday choose me.  But, even in that – I’m learning to let go.

I can’t make the world love me. I can’t make someone choose me.  I can only hope and try to remain optimistic.  But, eventually – if that choosing never comes and love never appears – I will walk away because I have chosen me, and I have learned to love myself – and no matter how much Hope wills it – I will only endure for a season.  I have learned to walk way. I have now walked many miles alone. I may always be alone.  But Hope and Optimism keep praying, keep smiling, and keeps trying = and I love them for it.

I am learning let go.  Maybe someday I’ll not have to anymore.

Till next time,

~T.L. Gray

Categories: author T.L. Gray, family, friends, Independence, Inspirational, Instructional, Life, love, memes, Musing, Spiritual, T.L. Gray, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How Do I Say Goodbye to a Dream?

How do I say goodbye to a dream, when the dream has been better than anything I’ve ever seen? How do I say goodbye to a love, deeper than the oceans or any love that ever was?

How do I say goodbye to my heart, beating stronger when we’re together and nearly stops when we’re apart? How do I say goodbye to  my breath, the very one that I lost at the very moment we met?

How do I say goodbye to a friend, who’s constant companionship I’d thought would never end?

How do I say goodbye? Where do I get the strength? I know what must be done, but I can’t even breathe.  How do I say goodbye to the greatest love I’ve ever known? How do I say goodbye? How do I move on?

It’s killing me to leave you, it’s killing me to stay. I want nothing more than to run into your arms, but I must run away. How do I say goodbye to you, how, oh how, do I breathe? You are the greatest love of my life, but I really have to leave.

I can’t stay here any longer, you’re not real, you’re just a dream. You’re the devil sent to torture me, the angel to unravel my seams.  Did you ever love me? Did you ever care? Or was it all just my imagination and a fool’s hat I wear?

How do I say goodbye?  Where do I get the strength? I know what must be done, but I can’t even breathe.  How do I say goodbye to the greatest love I’ve ever known?  How do I say goodbye? How do I move on?

It was a lovely dream, and I wish I could stay.  But life is calling me, it’s pulling me away.  I can’t worship you any longer, and pretend that you’re mine.  You belong to another and I’ve been left behind. To pick up the pieces of my broken, shattered heart,  With my arms loaded with shards, down the broken road I start.

Goodbye, my dream.  Goodbye, my heart. Good bye, my love.  Good bye.

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One Last Night

One Last Night

*A Flash Fiction Piece*

Gray clouds billow above the white foamy surf as fog rolls like a trampling stampede upon the surface of the cerulean sea.  The crash of waves upon the rocks reminds me of my lovers tryst; the sea spray our wild release. I stand at the widow, staring out at the cold, magical, monochromatic morning, my chest heavy with sorrow, but no regret.

The view before me blurs amid the hot, silver tears as they fill my eyes.  I flush as each warm memory fills my mind’s eye.  I wrap my arms tight around me and let the images take me back, take me into our one last night.

~

Dark eyes stared into my soul, undressing me, exposing the deepest part of me, stealing my breath.

Strong, gentle fingers slowly traced the side of my face, moving slowly down my neck, and onto my shoulders, shakily leaving a trail of prickling anticipation and sweet adoration.

I shivered.

He smiled.

I let go.

Two hearts beat in unison as our bodies converged into one, staring into each other’s eyes, feeling the love, forgetting the world outside.  Nothing else existed.  Nothing else mattered.  Giving. Receiving. Loving. Worshipping. Sharing. No words. No promises. No lies.

My eyes grew heavy as my head rested on his chest, listening to his strong heartbeat, feeling the comforting warmth of his arms wrapped around me, his fingers gently caressing me.  A perfect moment.

I didn’t look back as he left. I couldn’t.

~

I now stand empty, cold, and alone.  I can still hear his gentle breathing and feel the lingering sting of his touch, but only as ghosts and silhouettes.  I walk toward those cold, crashing waves, letting go of my will, my fight, my resolve, shedding my earthly shell and the last tendrils of my humanity. I disappear into the abyss.

Death holds his bony fingers out toward me and asks, “Was it worth it, your one last night?”

I take his hand, look up at him, and smile, “What night?”

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Complicated Simplicity

How much pain can a person truly handle before they break?  A person can break, I’ve seen it, experienced it, and am not convinced once broken we can ever be whole again.  But can we survive?

The hardest part of my faith for me is to trust that God will not allow more than I can handle.  That is His promise.  That is a promise I don’t understand.  It seems simple enough, but complexity and simplicity often happen at the same time.  Complicated Simplicity. What an oxymoron.

I’ve looked into the eyes of a person and saw fire – flames of life burning in them so bright they can’t help but make the world around them sparkle with hope, joy, laughter. It’s easy to believe in those moments in that promise.

I’ve also looked into a pair of eyes and witnessed such pain and depravation and literally watched the color of their irises dull and their whole countenance pale in despair. This is when we hope for that promise most of all.

I’ve also looked into a pair of eyes as their souls slipped away and death consumed them. It’s not something that can really be explained, nor is it something I would recommend.  Where is the promise here?

All these experiences leave behind scars… a tendril of essence that becomes recognizable when you see it operating in all the other sets of eyes in the world.  I truly do believe the eyes are the windows to a person’s soul.  I want to hold onto that promise, but I doubt, and I waiver, and I fear.

When my walls are up I avoid allowing people to look into my eyes.  When my walls are down I seek as much eye contact as possible. Our bodies can lie.  Our mouths can lie.  Our hands can lie.  Our thoughts can lie.  Our feelings are often the biggest liars of all.  But the eyes… the eyes can’t lie.  In this new technological world, it’s becoming easier to lie because we feel comfortable behind our screens.  Black font replaces our attempts to conceal our eyes, mostly from ourselves.  Again, another example of Complicated Simplicity.

 What complicated-simple truth would my eyes say today?  I’m reminded of a quote from my first published novel where Cain rolls over, away from the fire, away from the view of his new friend.  Tears spill out the corner of his eyes and he whispers, “No more.  I can bear no more.” Unlike my character Cain, I’m not immortal. I can break.

There was a moment when I opened my eyes this morning.  A brief moment – where time stood still and the universe turned toward me, and waited for an answer.  I had a choice.  Live or leave.  Fight or give up.  All thoughts left my mind.  All feeling left my body. Then I heard my spirit singing the soft echo of a song I haven’t heard in years from a group called Switchfoot …. http://youtu.be/jE-Krlqi4fk

Welcome to the planet.

Welcome to existence.

Everyone’s here.  Everyone’s here.

Everybody’s watching you now.

Everybody waits for you now.

What happens next?  What happens next?

 

I dare you to move!

I dare you to move!

I dare you to lift yourself up off the floor!

I dare you to move!

I dare you to move!

Like today never happened, today never happened before.

 

Welcome to the fall out.

Welcome to resistance.

The tension is here.  The tension is here.

Between who you are and who you could be.

Between how it is and how it should be.

 

I dare you to move!

I dare you to move!

I dare you to lift yourself up off the floor!

I dare you to move!

I dare you to move!

Like today never happened, today never happened before.

 

Maybe redemption has stories to tell.

Maybe forgiveness is right where you fell.

Where can you run to escape from yourself?

Where you gonna go?  Where you gonna go?

Salvation is here.

 

I moved.  I got up. I put my feet on the floor.  I breathed.   So complex, yet so simple. Today, I’m still broken but I’m alive.  So, yesterday was not more than I could handle. I’m not saying I handled it well, just that I survived.

Till next time,

~T.L. Gray

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Unlimited Mysteries

Image

 

“There are unlimited mysteries waiting to be discovered among our stars, within our atoms, and to everything between and beyond.  Yet, the biggest mysteries of all are not anything that can be learned – they must be felt.”~ T.L. Gray

 

I’m a facts and figures nerd.  I like to know how things work, where things come from, what are the results, reactions and consequences to every thing, every choice, every action.  I try to see beyond the obvious and read between the lines.  Needless to say – this has led to some great discoveries, but it’s also led to some painful truths.

But, it’s those other mysteries I can’t figure out.  While I may not know all the secrets to the universe, and understand that I’ve only begun to understand this vast universe to which I’m a part, there are things within and around us that I don’t think will and can ever be defined – not in its fullness or entirety.

What are these undefinable facts, truths and mysteries?  Faith, Hope and Love.

All three of the these things defy logic. They are as unique to each of us, as we are to each other – meaning that their meanings change from person to person, yet they still hold to some universal understandings.  The very things that make us unique, our experiences, our culture, our personalities help shape and filter the understanding we each have of these three things.

I only want to focus on one at the moment… love.  We try to set rules, boundaries, reasoning and logic… yet I find case after case, example after example of exceptions. I get it WRONG… all the time!  Yet my failure to identify, explain, or justify doesn’t change the fact that I feel and experience it.  It is most often the source of my greatest joy and my worst pain.  It doesn’t apply to the situations I want.  It feels what I don’t want it to feel, for who I don’t choose, when I don’t choose it. I have no control to turn it on or off, and even sometimes I don’t realize it’s been activated until an absence reveals what my mind never acknowledged.

Love has really caused some major difficulties for me lately.  It refuses to leave a place that often causes me a lot of pain, and showed up unexpectedly somewhere else.  I didn’t see it, would have vehemently denied it, but now that there’s an absence… a hole… I feel the empty vacuum, as if the earth has went off balance and my thoughts are muddled… and I have to say… it really hurts. Had I seen it, recognized it, acknowledged it, perhaps I could have made different choices.   Someone recently called me stupid for some of the thoughts I have on love.  I think they might be right.  Now, that leaves room for the other two immeasurable mysteries to play a part… Hope and Faith.  But whatever you do, don’t ask me to define them.  I can’t.

Till next time,

~T.L. Gray

Categories: Blog Post, Inspirational, Instructional, Musing, Philosophy, Romantic, Spiritual, Uncategorized, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Perfect Dream

Perfect Dream

 

Have you ever dreamed the perfect dream to only have it turn into a nightmare?  I don’t mean a wet dream, though those can be quite nice, I’m talking about a dream so perfect – a perfect day, a perfect love, with perfect weather, in a perfect location, experiencing perfect emotions, perfect peace; happiness; just sincere happiness; nothing extravagant, simply small, but so full of love?

I had one of those dreams last night.  I was walking down a trail, someone was holding my hand, that’s all I remember is the hands; our fingers entwined.  I heard laughter. I couldn’t tell if it was mine or his.  We were just walking.  The sun shone down on us, the wind was cool and soft.  Everything was green, there was so much green.  But, it wasn’t the scenery that made it a perfect dream.  I don’t even know if it was the company, but it was the feeling.

I didn’t feel scared. I didn’t feel alone.  I didn’t feel rejected.  I felt complete.  I felt content. I felt happy.  I felt at ease.  I trusted who I walked beside.  I was happy with who I was.  I felt loved – completely loved. I just knew – I KNEW that I’d never be alone, that I was whole, and that no matter what happened in the world, I was going to be okay.

Then I woke.

I tried so hard to go back to sleep. For that dream, I’d choose never to wake. What hurts most is knowing it is all just a dream. I’m left wondering why I can’t have that in my life right now.  It seems I live from one trial to the next.  While I have moments between, during, before, and after each trial, each testing,  it doesn’t seem like my life ever clicks to where I have a moment’s rest.

I’m so tired.  I’m tired of crying. I’m tired of struggling. I’m tired fighting. I’m tired of losing. I’m tired of starting over. I’m tired of being alone. I’m tired of being rejected. I’m tired of feeling helpless. I’m tired of surviving. I’m tired of having to climb out, climb up and climb over.  Can’t I stand on top for a moment? I’m sure it’s just my imagination that there are people out there in this world with an easy, happy life – devoid of disaster, tragedy and chaos.  I’m sure I torture myself with wanting something that doesn’t exist.

When we fight for something, we fight for a specific outcome.  I’m pretty strong most days, keeping purpose in front of me, encouraging myself forward, pushing myself with the strength to put one foot in front of the other.  But, there are some days when I’m not strong at all and I lose sight of that hope,  and I don’t remember what I’m fighting for.

But what choice do I have?  I’m still here. I’m still breathing.  My heart still beats. It doesn’t just stop, no matter how much I want it to just stop.  I can try to numb it with alcohol, but that won’t do anything to change the situation –except only to make it worse.  I can try to mask it in a vain relationship, but like the alcohol, it’ll only lead to something worse.  I’ve tried to exercise it away, meditate through it, and vanquish it with prayer – but it’s still there. I still wake up every morning.  My prayers go unanswered. My thoughts torture me. My body constantly aches from the extreme physical measures I put it through.

I’m split in two.  There are two parts of my soul, separated, that keep me from being whole.  I feel one part shutting down more and more every day.  There’s the emotional me – and the practical me.  My practical side is a work-a-holic who thrives in work. I’m most accepted when I work.  I’m valued most for what I can do for others, not simply for who I am. That’s great for business – and business is getting better, but the emotional side of me suffers.

I don’t know how to let that part of me be free.  I’ve kept her hid for so long trying to protect her, that putting her back in her box is easy… way too easy. Every day it gets harder to try and balance the two, to make room for her, to believe she’s important.  She feels too much.  She wants too much.  She’s a naïve child who doesn’t understand and believes in stupid shit like love – believing it’s the answer to everything.  She believes in God, miracles, positive thinking, success and romance.  She’s got a big imagination, but her dreams torture the practical side of me, overwhelming me with faith and killing me with hope.  She’s the dreamer and I’m the one left to clean up the mess her dreams leave behind.

It was her dream I had this morning.  I want her to have it so bad, but I can’t give it to her. I can’t make it happen.  I can wipe her tears away when she wakes.

My dream, the practical side of me, is that tomorrow I’ll be strong again and forget this moment of weakness. It serves no purpose.

Till next time,

~T.L. Gray

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Say Something

Say Something

 

*An Adventures of Jude and Tammy story*

Tammy slowly swung back and forth, the tips of her sandals gliding through the sand.  She looked up, hearing Jude’s voice across the playground.  He laughed and chased Katy around, trying to place a ladybug in her hair, knowing she was scared of them.  Tammy smiled and kicked off to make her swing go faster, higher. 

Katy’s squeals echoed off the brick wall of the school. “Jude, stop!”  She ran into the circle of her other friends.  “Help me, Alex, Chris, Rob.”

The three friends circled around Katy and then grabbed hold of her.  The tall skinny boy named Chris blurted out, “I’ve got her, Jude.  Do it!”

The five friends squealed and laughed in their circle as Jude pretended to place the ladybug in Katy’s hair. Tammy giggled watching the chaos from the swings.  Katy frantically searched through her hair for the bug and everyone else busted out laughing. Chris and Jude fell to the ground holding their stomachs, Alex giggled into her pig tails and Rob shook his head.  They then launched into a game of tag, covering the entire playground.

Tammy swung higher and higher, closing her eyes so she could feel the catch in her stomach as her swing fell back down to the earth after soaring high into the wide blue sky.  The warm rays of the sun kissed her cheeks with a light burn.  Her pale, porcelain skin always turned pink when exposed and caused a patch of freckles to appear across her nose.  A soft, sad song played in her mind as she lost herself in the swing.

“Hey, Tammy!”

She opened her eyes just as she reached the apex of the back swing and then smiled as she soared toward Jude standing beside the swings, his hands cupped over his brows like a visor to block the sun from his eyes.

“Hey, Jude.” It took a couple passes, her toes running through the sand to bring the swing to a stop.  “What’s up?”

“You should have seen it, Tammy.  I pretended to put this bug in Katy’s hair and she went all crazy. It was so sweet,” Jude told her as his eyes sparkled with excitement.

“I saw it,” Tammy responded.

“Did you see how she screamed? She sounded just like you when you scream.”

Tammy nodded.  The bell rang, indicating the end of recess.

Jude turned his attention to the school and then back at Tammy.  “Well, I’ve got to go.  I’ll see you tomorrow.”

With a small wave, Tammy responded, “Bye, Jude.”  She walked slowly into the building with a huge lump in her throat.

~

Tammy hung upside down on the monkey bars.  She closed one of her eyes and held out her tiger-eyed marble, catching a ray of the late summer sunshine in it and it sparkled.

Jude walked up beneath her.  “Hey, you still got that thing?”

“Yeah, why wouldn’t I?”

“Can I borrow it?”

Tammy wrapped her fingers around her marble and scrunched her brows at Jude.  The pressure in her brain grew heavy from being upside down for too long, so she pulled herself up and sat on top the bars.  “Why?”

“Chris wanted to play a game but I didn’t have a shooter.  We can play if I borrow yours.”  Jude held out his hand.

Opening her hand, Tammy looked down at her most precious treasure and then at the marble in her hand.  She bent down, placing the tiger-eye into Jude’s hands. “Take care of it.”

Without looking back, Jude took off running toward his group of friends and waved over his head, “Thanks, Tammy.”

Her fingers ached where the marble had once sat.  She closed her eyes to stop the tears that wanted to fall.

~

Watching the pretty pink ink flow across the paper, Tammy carefully formed each of her letters.  Her teacher told her earlier that day she had the best penmanship in the class and her stories were very imaginative.  She lay in the grass, swaying her legs back and forth behind her as she scribbled words across the lined page.  The black beetle scurried across the moss-covered log.

A ball bounced onto her paper, causing her to mess up the letter-g.  She raised her head and shouted, “Hey, watch where you throw your balls!”

Jude ran up, his steps crunching over the fallen autumn leaves and grabbed the ball.  He looked down and said, “Sorry, Tammy.  I didn’t see you laying there. Your brown sweater camouflaged you.”   He cocked his head to the side.  “What are you doing?”

“I’m writing a story,” Tammy answered.  “It’s about that time at the start of school …”

“Jude, come on!” Chris yelled from across the playground.

“See you later,” Jude said and took off running.

“… that we saw a black beetle in the woods,” Tammy finished saying.  She closed her notebook and placed her face into the crook of her arms and cried.

~

The cold winds came and snow fell, making the playground look like a winter wonderland.  Tammy loved her pink coat, boots, hat and mittens.  They had been an early Christmas gift from a grandmother she didn’t know who lived in the city. It was the last day of school before the winter break.

Tammy stepped through the snow until she came to the familiar plastic tunnels.  She liked to crawl into the end of the one placed by the edge of the playground where the other kids rarely played.  She liked to write there, free from the sounds of laughter, the wayward ball, the stares, or simply the sight of anyone else.  She crawled inside and pulled out her tattered notebook, now almost full of her stories.  She pulled out her pink pen that was now almost empty of ink and began to write.

The princess swung her sword and slayed the mean dragon, saving the kingdom.

“What’cha you doing in here?”

Tammy looked up, surprised to see Jude peering into the edge of the tunnel.  “I’m writing.”

“You’re still doing that?” Jude slid into the end of the tunnel and sat next to her.  “What are you writing about?”

Tammy blinked.  Her bottom lip trembled.  She snapped her book shut and said to Jude, “I missed you.”

Jude looked up at her and answered, “What are you talking about? I’ve been right here.”

She shook her head.  “No, you haven’t.”

He smiled. “You’re being silly, Tammy.  I see you every day.”

“No, you haven’t seen me in weeks.  You haven’t played with me or talked to me.”  She stuffed her book and pen into her pocket and climbed over him to get out of the tunnel.

Jude sat there quietly and stared at Tammy.  Confusion covered his face.

“Say something …” Tammy started, but then snapped her lips shut.  Tears sprang into her eyes.  “I was your best friend and would have followed you anywhere.”

“You are my best friend,” Jude muttered.

“You forgot me.” Tammy shook her head.  “I gave up on you when you took my marble and never gave it back.”

“It was just a stupid marble.  I’ll get you another one,” Jude said.

Tears coursed down Tammy’s face.  “It was mine and precious to me. You were precious to me.”

Jude pulled himself out of the tunnel and crossed his arms over his chest.  “You’re being such a girl, Tammy.”

“I am a girl.”  Tammy turned away and started walking away. “Good-bye, Jude.”

 

Till next time,

~T.l. Gray

Related Articles:

https://authortlgray.wordpress.com/2013/09/05/new-friends-part-iii-of-the-adventures-of-jude-and-tammy/

https://authortlgray.wordpress.com/2013/08/23/tag-youre-it/

https://authortlgray.wordpress.com/2013/08/22/want-my-marble/

Categories: Blog Post, Flash Fiction, Short Story, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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