“I don’t want to play second fiddle to a band that doesn’t exist yet.”
The Irish sure do have a way with words. And I’ve always been partial to them. My soul mate test involves reciting me some W.B. Yeats and recognizing my pilgrim soul. Because anyone who loves me has to love my passion for traveling and for pursuing the causes that matter to me. I’m an acquired taste; I command a lifetime of devotion regardless of whatever crazy idea comes into my head. I will have my reasons, and that has to be sufficient. (He doesn’t know this, but if this fucking virus ever ends and I get to Ireland, he will be taking me to Sligo to pay tribute to Mr. Yeats. That pilgrimage has always been on my bucket list.)
I don’t know if he made this quote up or if someone else originally said it, but he’s Irish so it could go either way. I mean, 99% of all witty quotes are attributed to Oscar Wilde anyway, so they have a reputation to uphold. And I’ve always referred to Uncle Oscar as my writing sage.
It was a statement that really cut to the heart but in a way I couldn’t help but find sincerely charming and wholly unexpected. Here was someone I took as a complete player at first, and maybe I tried in our early conversations to play up my history to sound more masculine and hide my true feelings. I hate having to play these idiotic games to ensure I don’t sound too needy and to cover up my true self. In reality, as evidenced by this blog, my nature is to pour my guts out and if I’m “too much” then so be it. At least I know I won’t be wasting my time.
When he made the comment, which was basically asking me if I was still holding on to a ghost from my college days, I was completely sure of my answer. I have fond memories of my distant past, but they are absolutely buried there for 25 years. As long as I’ve been single I’ve occasionally thought back to my college days, more because of the joy for life I had back then rather than a person. Carefree and oblivious to the reality that my life wouldn’t turn out the way I imagined it at the time. Or even what it would be just a year later. My time with “college guy” was the last year I didn’t carry scars with me. A much simpler time, and more than anything I clung to the idea of who I used to be, and how I used to feel about myself.
He doesn’t believe that, of course. It always has to be about the guy. I’m not allowed to analyze my remarks a little deeper and admit that my flippant comments about a past love weren’t about wanting that person back in my life. College guy was a great love, albeit one-sided when it was going on, but we get more than one great love in life. He was the first great love. Not THE great love.
THE great love comes from love and loss. From trust and heartbreak. From experience and learning. From fear and challenges. From depression and lots of wine. From utter devastation and rising from the ashes. From confidence and faith. It’s not something you have at 20 years old. It’s something you have to earn, and it is much sweeter for having to earn it.
I don’t want a simple love. I want complex, challenging, nuanced, tested. Something I know will survive because neither of us will just quit when things get difficult as they inevitably will, or a younger, fitter model appears in the driveway. There’s something to be said for the assurance of knowing the connection is so strong that another person could never know you better or make you feel so secure and loved. If anyone can figure me out, and wants to stick it out through that quagmire, god bless them.
I’ve been through hell and back. I only have room for one fiddle in my band. I’m not even musically inclined, but I play a mean triangle or spoons. It’s not a country band though; it’s an Irish band, because you know I have an affinity for drinking songs and sea shanties.