Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Steph's Dare

Steph, dear friend that she is, dared me to write about a “moment.”
It had to be personal, it had to have meaning.
So, here, you get to learn what one event has shaped me more than any other.
Thanks, Steph, for giving me the gumption to write about it.
Thanks, friends and family, for giving me the strength to live through it.
So here it is, beginning to end.

The Beginning

I smelled him before I felt him.
His aftershave mingled with the clean smell of soap.
He wrapped his arms around me from behind.
“Hey there.”
The sound of his voice in my ear made me tingle.
Through the butterflies in my stomach and the choke in my throat, I managed to get out, “Hey there, yourself.”
“Miss me?”
Without hesitation I practically screamed, “Yes.”
I felt his hand sweep my hair aside a second before his lips touched the nape of my neck.
I shivered.
There were so many things I wanted to say.
“Is this really happening?”
His nose burrowed in my hair a little deeper, “Is what happening?”
“Is this what this feels like? Am I really in love with you?”
I felt his chest shake with laughter as he pulled me tighter into him.
“Do you have to analyze everything? Can’t it just be?”
I tried not to hurt when he said it.
“When it’s this unreal, I have to question it.”
A bit of water dripped onto my shoulder.
“Did you even bother to towel off?”
“I didn’t want to be gone from you that long.”
He brushed his cheek against mine.
“I wish you hadn’t shaved.”
“I didn’t want to scratch you.”
“I like it. Feeling your stubble scrape against my cheek.”
“You’re not like other girls.”
“Comparing me to anyone in particular?”
“Stop questioning. Just accept it for what it is. I love you.”
“Don’t go to work. We’ll both stay home.”
He looked at the bed and I could almost feel his glance as it swept me from head to foot.
“You didn’t get enough last night?”
“I waited 5 months for that, and after last night, I’m not sure I can ever get enough.”
He laughed and then pushed me unto the bed.
“I’m not staying. I just want to kiss you a little before I leave you.”
He fell next to me and our legs tangled together.
I pulled him into me and closed my eyes.
Seconds elapsed without a kiss.
“What are you waiting for?”
“I want you to look at me.”
I opened my eyes.
“Watch me as I kiss you.”
I looked into his eyes as his lips met mine.
He stayed for three days.

The End

(18 months later)

He led me to the gazebo.
I felt like a prize fool.
Everyone on the grounds could see me crying.
“Why can’t we just talk about this in the apartment?”
“Do you want Amber to know what is happening?”
“Then we are sitting out here.”
We reached our destination and I sat down.
I expected him to sit next to me, hold me, tell me everything was going to be okay.
He sat across from me.
Staring at me without seeing me.
The distance between our bodies echoed in his eyes.
“Did you do this on purpose?”
“You’re serious????”
“Yes. I need to know. Did you do this to speed things up?”
“You’re really a piece of work! Of course I didn’t do this on purpose! Do you think this is a great time for me either? I’m in my senior year, I have a thesis to finish, applications to grad school, we’re in different cities. NO! I didn’t do this on purpose.”
“I had to ask.”
I could feel my heart tearing a little.
“You trust me so little? Then why did you ask me to marry you?”
“I trust you. I want to be with you. But this changes things. A lot.”
“Do you think I did this alone?”
“Shut up. I have to think.”
A million retorts rushed down my head to my lips, but none crossed them.
“What does the doctor say?”
“I want to know what you want. Not what the doctor wants. Doctors always want something different. I’m asking you. What do you want?”
“I’m not answering that until I know all the details.”
“Do you want this baby? Do you want our child?”
“God, yes, you know I want children. I want them with you. But now? After everything we’ve found out. With you still in school?”
“Then let’s do it.”
My heart was in my hand and I was timidly holding it out to him. Please, don’t hurt me. Please, let this be the future. Let this be real. Don’t let everything else control our lives. Make this decision with me.
“I can’t. You can’t.”
“You won’t.”
“You’re a selfish bitch, you know that? You’re right I won’t! You’re 21! You just found out you have a tumor! You could die if you carry this child to term! But all you can think about is what you want, you want a baby, you want a family, you want happily ever after. What about what I want? I want to see you finish school, I want to see you raise our children, I want to grow old with you. Will those things happen if you ignore the tumor to save this baby??? We can always have children, but if we do it now, I can’t be sure I’ll always have you.”
The tears I had succeeded in blinking back came rushing forward again.
“Why does it have to be either/or? Why can’t it be both?”
“Can it? Did the doctor tell you that we could have both? If we ignore the tumor and focus on the baby, will you still be around?”
“I can’t answer that.”
“Then we’re not doing it. Call the doctor tomorrow. Schedule the abortion. If it’s the baby or you, I pick you.”
“It might be NOTHING. I’ve been healthy for over two years! This mass or tumor or whatever they found could be scar tissue, it could be ruptured cysts, it could be nothing. You’re willing to give up our child for a chance?”
“With your medical history, with everything you’ve been through, with the medications you’re on . . . do you think it’s nothing? What about the medicines? Have they harmed the baby already? You’re 7 weeks pregnant, you think they haven’t had an effect? Just do it. Just call the doctor. Just have it arranged. I’m not letting you take the chance.”
The crying became uncontrollable.
He pulled me across the space between us into his lap.
His arms wrapped around me.
“I love you. I love you. Don’t make me lose you.”
“But you’ll accept the loss of our child.”
“To know that I’ll have you? Yes.”

The next day, I made the appointment.
Monday morning came and he never showed up.
I called Emily and “Ruby” to take me.
They held my hands through the procedure. They yelled at the protestors waving cameras in my face. They half carried me, half led me to the car.
Jeff called and apologized while I was waiting on my exiting counseling session.
“Big meeting at work, I couldn’t get out. Baby, I’m so sorry. I’ll be there tonight.”
He arrived at 8 P.M.
No explanations or excuses for where he had been since he got off work.
No more apologies for being absent for the death of our child.
He didn’t speak at all.
He just held me.
And that’s when I noticed.
He smelled of something.
Sweet and musky.
A perfume that wasn’t mine.
Mingled with something else.
I recognized that smell.

I watched him sleep that night.
His chest rising and falling with each breath.
He slept soundly.
What we did, what I did, what he did - didn’t trouble him at all.

That’s when they left.
My feelings of love, of safety, of security, of trust.
They were all gone.
I felt apathy move to fill the emptiness.
And it took up residence.


beachgirl said...

Oh Precious girl- thank you for writing that.. Thanks for also making me cry at work... You are so precious and I feel so blessed to call you my friend... Love you girl!!!

Rolligun said...

Whoa, Megan, I definatley got that one!

I'm not even gonna pretend I have anything to say. Never been there.

You just covered 500 miles of emotion...in writing. It's beyond me.

i said...

im lost for words.. followed the link from steph's blog.. read this..

just ...


- i.

Kate said...

Gobsmacked. Yesterday's post is more clear today. I'll be back when I have better words.

Steph said...

Sweet girl. What a horrendous thing to have to go through and what a complete and utter cumpuppet that man was.

I can't begin to imagine how anyone would heal from that. I have no words.:(

Laurie (aka buggy) said...

I'm speechless. At the same time, I can sort of relate to what you went through in what is THE MOST important and life changing choice a woman can make in her life. Well, I feel it is anyway. And I felt your pain when I read it because I went through something TOO similar. I've written a lot about it, and, it's something that never goes away and while it hurts to think about, at the same time - I don't think I ever WANT it to go away because a memory IS all I have. Anyway thanks for your openness.

janestarr said...

Dear Meghan- You are an amazing, amazing woman. That isn't even good enough, but it is a start. What strength and passion it took you too live, survive, and write about it. My heart is with you, all of it is for you today, Meghan.


Thomas said...

I just found your site from my comment book... and then read through this entry. Amazing... I'd say more, but I want to go read it again... You wrote so well and made a person who doesn't even know you feel what you felt... or at least try to imagine what you could have felt. Well written... thank you.

trueborn said...

You walk around, and you try to live life as a good person, and one day you realize that not everyone else is trying like you are.
I've got nothing for you Meghan.
I'm sorry. But I have to believe that in this wide universe that there is some justice. As far as I'm concerned theres gotta be a giant blank cosmic check out there your your name on it darlin.

Letting apathy and the rest take up residence though is crazy talk. Those fuckers never pay rent! Evict 'em they don't belong there. Don't lump all us men in one big heap, some of us a perfectly good geeks.:)

qwer said...

I need his name and address...this isn't a job for lists, it's a job for laxative cake!!

He's a fucking bastard, even more so because he tried to say that he didn't want to lose you, which was total bullshit! Gahd I wish I was there, just so I could give the prick shit.


Ang said...

no words are coming that don't feel contrite! you have opened your soul and shared your pain with us. the strength even that took is profound. you are beaurtiful. thank you!

Jenni said...

OH.MY.GOD. You are stronger than I could've ever imagined. My heart was ripped out and stomped on for you, Meghan.

angel, jr. said...

Thank you for sharing. I got somewhat choked up.
A very beautiful piece of writing.

meghansdiscontent said...

Hey gang!
Okay . . FIRST - for all of you who haven't commented, but emailed - feel free to comment. In fact, PLEASE comment. I want to know what you're thinking . . . It's my blog, but it's yours too. Say whatever you want.

EXCEPT for the idiot who anon emailed me (how did you manage to do that??) and called me a murderer. YOU, sir or madam, may rot in hell.


Beachgirl - I'm so sorry that you cried at work!! No need to cry, honey.

Rolligun - Glad this one was clearer for you. :) I promise, no more poetry for a while. I hate thinking I'm confusing my guests.

I - thanks for popping in!!! And double thanks for the hugs, they are much appreciated. Sorry your first visit was for such a downer story though. :( Hope you come back.

Kate - Yeah, I wrote that poem while I was thinking about writing this. It took me a while (what, Steph, was it two weeks ago you dared me??) to build up to the ability to write about it. The poem was my kickstart. It was a somewhat revealing moment, leading up to the reason for that moment. I hope you say something more though, I'm interested on your take.

Steph - I'm so so so so sorry that I took your dare to this level. I just, every time I came upon a moment - it was about Jeff . . and I would feel as though I mislead everyone if I let them believe he was THAT guy that you read at the beginning . . because he's not. Healing is slow and yet, continual. A bit more each day.

Laurie - HUGS to you! I know how you feel though, it's like you want to forget that it EVER happened, but at the same time . . you need it. You need to remember what you could have been and why you're not.

Janestarr - I'm average, sweetie, promise. Just had some hella bad experiences. Thank you, though, your words, your heart and your thoughts are greatly appreciated.

Trueborn - See why women say things like "Men are horrible." Deep down we know the good ones like you are out there, but they're so few and far between . . we get jaded for a bit. I'm working on getting rid of the apathy, but I've said it before and I'll say it again . . I think it's going to take someone amazing helping me push out what's left. I can't do it alone. I'm tired of trying.

TFS - Angel, it's not all his fault. I'm just as guilty. I put too much hope and trust into him. I should have known better. BUT . . . you're going to reem me for that, I know.

Ang - ANY words help. I think I wrote this and thought "No one's going to comment, everyone's going to hate me too much to comment." Just seeing you read it and are still talking to me is MORE than enough.

Jenni - GIRL, I am not that strong. I was destroyed, demolished and basically dead for almost a year after that happened. LARGE parts of me are still VERY dead. I have friends who don't even talk to me anymore because I'm so different. I was the most happy-go-lucky, always a smile, always a joke, help everyone person . . and now I'm this jaded person you read all the time. I actually thought this post showed just how weak I am/was.

Angel, Jr. - Thank you. I'm sorry you got choked up. It scares me to think that the guys get choked over my story. I didn't mean to make everyone feel so awful.

Eunuch said...

Meg-Seriously, words cannot say the emotions I feel after reading this.

Anonymous Assclown said...

But the jaded apathy is also almost a defense mechanism as well, right? No one will think you're hurting if they think you don't care.
And I still think there's a lot that you've left unsaid.
But I loved the poem and the sentiment behind it.

meghansdiscontent said...

Eunuch - Torn here. Can't decide whether I'm happy that my honesty touched you . . or upset because I made your already tough life a bit tougher emotionally for a minute.

Anon Cow - Trust a psycho analyst to say that. :) There's a ton I've left unsaid . . because I don't want to depress you people into suicide. As open and honest as I was here . . . there are still millions of little nuances that you will never know about what happened at that time.

Kate said...

Meg, I haven't forgotten about your post. I'm waiting until I can write w/o distractions.

qwer said...

I don't know the whole situation, but I really don't think that it's your fault at all. You didn't make him a two faced fucktard. He was like that all along.

Putting hope and trust in someone is not a bad thing. Betraying someones hope and trust in you is a bad thing.

Hindsight is always 20/20, we all have things we should've known better about. Juggling printers, leaving laptops and iPods exposed in cars, and moving interstate for someone I thought I was in love with are some of mine. The first two are my fault for being an idiot. The last one I look back on and see that it was a stupid move, but I was lied to and went with her because I thought I was in love with her...when in fact she was someone completely different. I took a chance, and I did have the chance of being happy with her. I found out later that I couldn't be, but at the outset the chance was there and I had to take it. I take responsibility for the choice to move there, and also the choice to move back here and put myself back on track. Am I at fault? No. Did I rush into it? Yes. Could I've done things smarter? Oh hell yes! But love makes us do silly things...when the person we love doesn't respect that fact, and takes advantage of it, we can't take the blame for those silly things after the fact.

What happened is not your fault, even if it feels like it is. I know I can't change your mind about that, I'm not trying to. Only you can. All I'm saying is that you are not to blame for his actions or choices, only he is.

I don't know about the other guys, but I know why I got choked up. I wanted to put it right. To fix it and make it all better. The fact that I couldn't is what got to me.

I also agree with Jenni, you ARE strong. Why? You're still here! You survived! It destroyed you but you kept going, you made it through something that would've pushed others beyond the point of no return. While you are different, you're still you at heart. I also don't think you're half as jaded and cynical as you think you are...and besides, you make jaded and cynical look HAWT ;o)

You'll find your someone amazing, just don't give up hope.

And as for the anonymous fucktard that decided that this was their chance to harass someone on the topic of abortion, how about you deal with a life threatening pregnancy first before throwing stones? If you're that gutless that you have to hide your identity behind a fake email address, you clearly do have the courage of your convictions don't you? Regardless of what you believe, have the balls to stand up show your true face and stand by what you believe in. Being an anonymous blowhard does nothing for your "cause", and only serves to fulfill your true motive, which is to cause someone else pain you sick twisted little fuckwit. If that's what you get off on, why not just admit it instead of hiding behind some other cause. Remove your head from your rectum before you type again please, no one wants to read the shit you dribble.

qwer said...

Hmmm...that was more of a post than a comment lol

I forgot to say something though, no ones going to abandon you because of that post...and if they do, they're not worth your time anyway.

I think I can speak for everyone when I say we're all still here for you, no one hates you, and you're not rid of us yet!


Trix said...

Wow, it's like you're writing down everything I think...only MUCH more eloquently.


Barry S. said...

meghan - that was very courageous of you to write something so personal to you. Wonderful writing as well.

No one should judge you, especially someone hiding behind anonymity.

Adam said...

I actually read this yesterday but it was too huge, too big, hit me too hard for me to comment straight away.

All the above comments are freakin' awesome. All you people rock!

I can't believe that man could be so cruel and betray your trust so quickly. It wasn't wrong for you to trust him, you didn't go too hard too fast because he was the one who said the words "I want to grow old with you". Trusting someone who says that isn't wrong and I'm so sorry it turned out the way it did. He is a bad man and I honestly don't know a single dude who would do that. It's totally a dog act.

I don't think you're average, young lady, having to make a decision that huge is far bigger than almost anyone has to make in their entire lives. You've been through the hell and come out the other side a better person.

I think the comments here proves that there are good people in the world. Please work on learning to trust again.

This post was beautiful and heartbreaking. Thank you.

meghansdiscontent said...

TFS - I don't care how long your comments are, they always make me feel better. Thank you, doll.

As for the ANON email - what a wanker. What kills me is that I think my email's screwed . . because I've missed SEVERAL important work emails and a few personal emails today. However, great wonderful little ANON boy/girl got through.

Trix - Thank you. I don't know how eloquent it is though.

Barry - Thanks, doll. It wasn't courage. It was a dare . . and I can never turn down a dare. :)

Adam - Have I told you how much I adore you? Because I do. You've been with me from the beginning and introduced me to MOST of these fantabulous people. You've been a rock for me. Thanks, Adam, more than you know.

Adam said...

You're totally welcome Meghan!

muffin said...

This was one moment, alright! One of those moments that change everything. Isn't it funny how a 5 minute conversation, or one smell (in your case) can change everything? It's bizare. I am like that. All of a sudden one, tiny incident will happen and I will just snap. Right at that moment.

Things tend to build up to such a point that once they become evident it's the little things that matter the most.

I really enjoyed reading that (even though the feeling of it wasn't that of a happy one). I hope you get some satisfaction out of looking back on that moment and realising that it was one of the things that atributed to you being such a strong person.

Anonymous said...

I was under the impression Steph had dared you to write about a date you went on. :s Not sure what lanet I'm on, as I definitely got the wrong end of the stick there.

Beutifuly written, both evocative and provoking, and also strikingly powerful.

verbs said...

That was me.

Ang said...

It is the living through the bad experiences, and growing from them that makes people amazing! Average is never having tested your limits- you my dear girl are not average, you are amazing!!

michellesarah said...

What a crushing post - you think he's the hero, willing to sacrifice his own baby for the sake of his lady love... until he goes and throws it all away, and crashes spectacularly.

I found you through Steph's site, and now I've lost my emo-viriginity on your blog - the first blog post to make me cry. Somehow you drew us into your world and broke our hearts. I can only hope time has helped to heal yours.

Kate said...

Meg, forgive me but I e-mailed you my response. Let me know if you don't receive it.

meghansdiscontent said...

Adam - What a gentleman you are.

Muffin - Smells do it for me. It IS odd, like you said. Suddenly you flash to something that's so real you could reach out and touch it. Glad you enjoyed the read, but I'm sorry about the feeling . . gosh, I seem to be saying that a lot . . but yes, I look back and think "that made me who I am and it showed me what I'm worth."

Anon/verbs - Hmm. . maybe I misinterpreted the dare? But I know for certain it wasn't about a date. It's possible that we should ask Steph . . and possibly I should ask her for clarification from now on with our dares. :)

Ang - Honey, you know that you're like my favorite cheerleader, right?? THANK you for constantly picking me up!

Michellesarah - OMG, you nailed it. He was my hero. I honestly thought he only cared about me. I mean we had been together almost 2 years and I had been engaged for 7 months . . (btw, I later found out he had two other exes who had been talked into abortions, nice huh?) I was the first blog to make you cry????????? You guys don't know how bad I REALLY feel about this. I should have taken Steph's dare more lightly.

Kate - Nothing to forgive, chica! But, I didn't get the email ... wanna try it again? I may have accidentally tossed it in Junk mail. I'm not that great at scanning.

Kate said...

Okay I will try that again. BTW please tell me this guy isn't the pile of excrement that calls you to babysit.

meghansdiscontent said...

Kate - I got it! I will respond as soon as I can devote my FULL attention to the email.

And yes, he's the guy I babysit for sometimes. WHAT is wrong with me??

Chairborne Stranger said...

Well I am real sorry that you had to go through this, and you are wonderful for making it like you have.

Bone said...

"Thanks for commenting on my blog" doesn't seem quite apropos here.

Just when I think maybe I could one day be a writer, I come across this, and realize I should probably give up that dream. This is the single most well-written blog entry I have ever read. Splendid.

And I'll just comment on the writing because I have no idea what to say about the rest.

Adam said...

Megs, you so shouldn't have taken Steph's dare more lightly. This was absolutely perfect. Moving people to emotion (either happiness or sadness) is a wonderful gift and one we are all very glad you gave us.

Everyone that cried or is/was upset or wants to beat the dude up all feel treasured that you chose to share that with us.

Your openness and honesty is why we are all here (and because you know, sometimes you make us laugh).

Thank you again. I just read over it again and probably will do so a few more times.

meghansdiscontent said...

Chair - Thank you. I'm still making it through. It's really odd how long things stick with you.

Bone - You're too hard on yourself! I read your stuff! You're probably way better than I am, the only difference is that in THIS particular instance, I wrote about something highly personal and revealing. Emotional doesn't necessarily = good writing. Thank you for your compliments on my writing though . . I wish I could be a writer, who knows maybe we both will be one day.

Adam - Great. Now you've made me cry. Sweetie, the things you make me think about . . you challenge me and uplift me. You're great and I'm blessed to have you in my life.

Kate said...

About the baby-sitting thing, there's nothing wrong with you. But, I find it very twisted on his part.

verbs said...

Nah...it was my screw up. I just crossed a few of my brain wires a week or so back and confused myself...as usual. :)

Tenacious T said...

I've lived my own tragedies. But nothing such as this. Through your writing, I FELT the emotions of the situations as if I was the one living it. And your reflections have such clarity. This is an amazing post.

meghansdiscontent said...

Kate - He is/was a very twisted individual. He has since changed, at least as far as I can tell.

Verbs - If you say so, sweetie. :)

Tenacious T - Welcome, welcome. Thank you so much. I hope you come back for something cheerier though.

Dorothy said...

Followed Bone to you Meghan. It has prompted me to organize and get out in writing my own deeply personal hurt and say goodbye this season. I had a husband who molested my nieces and nephews while I was pregnant with his son. He was just 4 months old when I found out. To compound things, after he was arrested, I found out about his 18 yr old girlfriend while cleaning up his apartment to send off his things to his parents. I smelled that sweet musky scent and knew too. Nothing stabbs deeper when you are already emotionally dying because of trauma.

Choose to give yourself permission to live again, honey. Let yourself be loved.