Saturday, April 25, 2009

Sleepless on Saturday Night

I'm watching Sleepless in Seattle for the umpteenth time, so why don't I recall the beginning of it? I didn't know Tom Hanks' character moved to Seattle from Chicago. When did that happen? Now, I watch the Christmas dinner with Meg Ryan's family, and I wonder what in the world were they thinking to have family celebrations? And what's up with Walter's allergies? Notice how bad his symptoms get when Meg announces their engagement? Is that just a huge sign that's being ignored? Wait, Annie, (Meg's character) stop! What are you thinking? Run, Annie, run!

And then there's Walter's name. I'm trying to imagine what it must sound like in bed. "Walter, Walter..." There's just no way to make that sound worth saying.

But then, there's Sam, Tom Hanks' character, who says about his deceased wife: "She made everything beautiful." And then I think that maybe the marriage thing doesn't have to be overlooked, that maybe it could work with the right people. What would that be like? I don't have any references of a great marriage. I'm racking my brain here. Who do I know that is in a marriage that I would desire? I'm telling you, I can't think of anyone. (If you only knew how long I waited to type this sentence while pondering that question.) In my head I'm going through the list of married couples I know, and I cannot think of one that would make me think twice about marrying again.

And then Sam stands out on his deck looking at fireworks across the water as Nat King Cole sings and he thinks of his wife. I know that love is worth it. Love is worth the sadness and the desire for it. Love is worth it because it just is. It's worth the longing when you know it's coming.

I know it's coming. I felt it today. I was in Dallas with my best friend from high school, and we were walking down Knox Street going into Pottery Barn, and I felt the man behind me. I felt him watch me as I opened the door and went in. Sometimes I just know because I feel it. There's no physical evidence, but there's a knowingness that comes through clearly. It's such a clarity, an absolute vision that erases all doubt.

I know him. I feel him. He's here, and to think otherwise is ludicrous.

That's how sure I am.

In Modern Magick a couple of weeks ago James Arthur Ray talked to us about all that happens in the universe happens now. How we live in vertical time, how all our choices are made simultaneously. So, in 1978 one Jill walked down the aisle while at the same time another Jill chose differently, and that time is now. Hm??? Well, that's a concept that could just drive me to drink if only I wanted to get up. Now, that's a reason to have a husband around -- all I'd have to say is, "Honey, could you pour me a drink?" And of course, he'd take it to mean that it was time to get laid. And maybe he'd be right.

"The first time I saw her. I knew it. It was like coming home, but a home I'd never known before."

And then I hear Sam say these words about his wife, and I wonder, no, I long for, that kind of love. How would it feel to have a man feel that way about me? Then there was Mathew Perry's character in that movie with Selma Hajek -- Fools Rush In. He stops her from driving away by saying something to the same effect, and they run off and marry. How crazy can we possibly get about this thing called love?

It's midnight on a Saturday night and my daughter just called to let me know that she didn't win her latest match but the good news is that she lasted a minute longer than the first one and she's not nearly as beat up as she was the last time. She said that now I could breathe easier and sleep well.

That's when I realized how long I had been holding my breath. That's when I knew why I was still up writing away on my blog. Once I heard her voice, once she told me she was okay, and I knew it to be true, then I exhaled, then I knew it was okay to fall asleep, then I knew how much my heart aches at the thought of her getting hurt, then I remembered how much I love someone right now, how my whole being swells with gratitude that she is my daughter even though she chooses to be involved in mixed martial arts. She has taught me the true meaning of love. She has been my reason for waking in the mornings since her birth on October 26, 1980. She is the reason I came here, not to TX, well that too, but to this planet during this lifetime. She has taught me unconditional love. And love at first sight. The moment I looked at her, I fell in love. I had no idea that love could be that full, that all-encompassing, that real, that majestic. I didn't know it could be everything. I looked at that baby in my arms and I knew more than I've ever known anything before or since, that I could move mountains, that I could lift buildings, that I could do anything I needed to keep her safe, healthy, and alive, and I would without a moment's hesitation.

And then she chooses to fight. In a ring. In another state. And there's nothing I can do about it. When she comes home bruised with black eyes and broken blood vessels in her eyes, I can fix her breakfast in the mornings. I can wash her clothes, and feed her dog. I do that with my mouth shut, only to let it out at the dinner table with one of her male friends. With tears running down my face, I tell them both that it hurts to see the bruises, the red eye, the lacerations on her knuckles, but what else can I do?

She cries and wonders how she could possibly fight now knowing how I feel.

I tell her that she is to never -- I mean never -- change who she is to accommodate another person. Ever. No matter who that person is or what they want.

So, she goes off to fight in a ring, and I let those anguishing moments flow through me because I won't hold onto them. Instead, they surface. I feel my heart hurt, maybe tears spring to my eyes if I think about what she's doing, and then I breathe deeply knowing that love is all I can give her at those moments, and that is enough. It's all there is.

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