But I want him! She said. No matter the topic it always went back to him. The mystery man that comes into and out of her life minutes at a time. If she is very lucky a few hours in a night only to wonder in the morning when he is long gone if it ever really happened.
What do I do, what can I do to remove all the obstacles in our way? She pleaded. My answers were not what she was looking for however my answers come from history, experience and the all too known memory that does not allow me to escape such tragic mistakes.
'Let's shop you and me. Let's go to the mall where you can shop for any man. There is a return policy but in this fantasy you can choose the man you always wanted and therefore a return would not be necessary.' Yet still she began with his name and his qualities (few that there were).
'No! Let's begin again. You are not shopping for what you have. In the endless possibility mall, you are shopping for what you want.' The silence on the phone was endless. I sat in my car on a cold bitter night consoling someone I had only met a month before. She sees such wisdom in me that I believe I lack. But I understand her current predicament.
It is much easier for 'friends' and family to judge. To see clearly the mistake this man is. To lose patience over the time she invests and loses. It is much harder to just listen and allow someone to get to the point of no return, without judgment, without constantly telling them that the ending will be no different. It is much harder to slowly talk them through seeing what their heart masks.
'I want a man that cares, one that is charming, that will spend time with me, take walks, go to movies, sit for dinner and share some laughs. I want a man that loves me and shows it. Has no qualms in saying it, even less qualms in wanting it returned.' As her list grew her voice became a whisper.
'Well (and for this story we shall call her Madeline)...Well, Madeline, we are leaving the mall, you may have the financial means to purchase such a man but the cost is also knowing when you are ready for him. You may not have the final cost; which is deserving such a man. Tell me, does the one you pine for, does he have these qualities?'
'I believe without the obstacles he can be.' Her persistence and faith in this man is unbelievable and also admirable.
'Then you love who you hope he can be and not who he is. And it is alright if you don't believe so, there will be a time when your self esteem will flourish and you will ask yourself the same question and will not be able to lie to yourself.'
'How do you know?' she asks.
'I've been to that mall. I've asked myself and could not lie. I one day woke and remembered that I deserved better. I embraced the fact that I am at an age where it is even harder to meet someone let alone fall in love with someone that loves you back. But, at the end of the day, I am not with miserable company, nor am I with someone that leaves me lonelier then if alone.'
For weeks I have had a rented movie called Confessions of a Shopaholic. I don't know why I rented the movie since I really dislike shopping. I am not a great fan of the actors, but here it is. Luckily the rental does not include late fees; rather you don't get another rental until you return the current ones you have.
On this Saturday where there is nothing promising on the 300 plus channels I see the rental disc I find myself needing to visit that mall again, to stop at the Self-esteem Mart and Let go of a fantasy drive up, this day I need distraction, for I am ready yet not at the point of no return.
I am more surprised of the movie as each minute passes. It is funny, it is wrapped neatly in multiple lessons and more importantly it didn't distract me, it made me realize I am closer to the point of no return then I want to believe.
She shops to avoid the brutalities of life. Madeline obsesses over a selfish man to avoid the brutalities of life. I won't let go of fantasy that promises no reality because I don't want to face the brutalities of life.
She falls in love with a man and lies to him, to protect herself, him and her debt. Madeline falls in love with love and lies to herself to protect that fantasy that revives the passion in her heart that for too long had lied dormant. I lie to myself and to him because the truth is painful. But just like the character in the movie, one can only lie for so long before those lies become apparent to everyone including you.
Her redemption is to sell everything in order to pay her debt. Ironic, the very things she bought and created the debt she sold. She passed on a job that she dreamt of since childhood. Her redemption was to admit to herself that she had a problem that only she could fix. A relentless collection agent forced her to the point of no return.
Madeline is still on the crossroad of denial and slightly realizing roads. Still no where near the point of no return, that valley with dry lands and eerie views that makes one recreate their landscape to fit their reality. But I believe she will get there, for every time she calls to complain, she is forcing herself to listen to reality even though she describes it with a fantastic view.
As for me, I took the road of slightly realizing and am now on that long bridge over point of no return. I walk slowly for I know that I will lose more then I ever though I would gain. I will lose a friend that I love, I will lose the confidence built with someone, and most importantly I will lose the hope I had of a fantasy come to life. But when I reach my destination I will have to remind myself that the journey had a greater quest. For truth to rise even at a cost and to be the friend I had promised to be. And to let go of something that if I ever had the courage to do; I would simply open my hands to see that I never had it to begin with.
Can you shop for love? Yes. What you can't do is walk out of the mall with it.
I love October, not just because it is my birthday month but because the air changes, the season changes, the time changes.
It is when we must embrace the fact that the time change will have us seeing the dark sooner. A time when the trees begin to let loose the leaves, orange, brown and yellow leaves flying about.
It is the time when the ghouls and horrors are seen in decorations, shows, movies and parties.
It is the time when we say farewell to the summer heat, smile toward the cooler weather and wonder of the winter to come.
Happy October! May there be light within you to shine upon the earlier darker hours. May the ghouls and gremlins that ring the door bell make you smile and partake in trick or treat.
May you embrace the change in season knowing... it will bring us back to Spring soon enough.
I have added a tab - Whisper my words, which is a link to my site where I post stories, poems, AndMore events and the Watcher's Journal. Take a peek and enjoy.