He told me that he was moving out. Today. We would not be spending the rest of our lives together, from today. The silence screamed as this inconceivable announcement bounced around my mind, never settling or subduing.
18 years later, remembering that moment spurs tears. He has my unconditional love for eternity. A few years earlier he’d been so keen for us to get married.
Sure, if that’s what you want, let’s have a big party for all our friends and family. I’ll love you forever, whatever, no marriage necessary. You’re a big part of my soul.
I wouldn’t wish loss like that on anyone. When marriages between beautiful people fail, I’m reminded of that day and the following years of learning to live with a rattle in the empty part of my soul. Like the rattling fan on my dying boiler except this is a rattle no-one else can hear in a hole no-one can see.
Since then I’ve had fun relationships, sensible relationships, all sorts of mixes with special people. My soul doesn’t rattle as loudly, but the gap is unfilled.
I tell myself it’s better to have lived that kind of love, and lost it, than never to have loved at all. Mostly, I believe myself because when I phone him, or think of us together, I can’t help but smile and LOL.