The end

February 16, 2016 — 67 Comments

 

 kQXDc8s

I don’t know why I stopped writing in the first place…
And that ladies and gentlemen is what you call a lie. I do know why I stopped writing but with all things regrettable, lies come to our aid on horses that can gallop faster than those carrying the truth.
So the truth? Well I don’t want to say. Thats why I didn’t.
I don’t even want to now but lets just get it over with and i’ll tell you what happened. 


Dad died…
And I didn’t know what else to say after it happened. And so the saying stopped.
For nearly 3 years I had written openly and honestly about things that wore me out to write about and built me up to write about.
I felt like a nudist.
I felt like people must feel when they get their kit off and run out ahead of a group of clothed people into the wild waves at the beach. I felt exposed and it felt like freedom.
…And then dad died.
I didn’t feel like a wild spirited nudist anymore. I felt naked and all of a sudden I didn’t want people to look at me. The death of dad was too private and mid sprint down the beach I suddenly wanted to cover those private parts. I wanted to hide.
So that’s what I did. I covered myself.

Shhhh.

Please don’t talk to me about it. Please don’t ask me about it….Please don’t make me say.

I still wrote, I just didn’t show anyone. People would ask and I would lie: I would say I had been too busy (I hadn’t) I said I had taken a short break (I intended to never publish again)

The thing was, how could I write about my life without writing about his death? I couldn’t. It had changed my life and I didn’t want to tell you how so I just set aside the laptop, with its white, blank face sitting there blinking at me with an unmoving cursor and I walked away.
Im about to write about it now and though it will be very brief I want you to know that the whole handful of sentences that will come after could easily be substituted with one word: Shit.

The last day I saw him was the first time I had seen him in years and I knew it was the last time I would ever see him.
I just knew it. I just knew it. I just knew it. I just knew it. I just knew it. I just knew it.
My favourite place in the world is called Whale Bay. It can be found about 4 radio songs past his house. Where he lives…Where he lived.
I would drive past his letter box most days and look straight ahead and definitely not check if he had envelopes sticking out of it and definitely not wonder if he was wondering about me and definitely not hope he was.
Another lie. See? Those lies ride their horses hard and fast.

Then one day I pulled into his driveway. Why that day? Why of all days did I stop that day?
I sat there staring up at the mossy driveway. I had a pretty dress hanging in the back of the car and I took the raggedy shorts and singlet that i’d been wearing over my bikini off and put it on. I loosened my hair and plaited it down and to one side. I pinched my cheeks to put some colour back in my face.
Thats a beauty trick I read about in a book when I was little.
I was trying to look pretty so he would think I was pretty. Why did I stop on that day? Why that day? Why did I stop and why did I want him to think I looked pretty?
I put the car into first gear and drove forward a bit. I turned the radio up while I drove the rest of the way and then parked right in front of his front door. I wondered if when he saw me he would think I was brave.

He said he had just been wondering about me. He said I looked very pretty. He said he wasn’t going to die. He said he was sorry. He said I made him proud. He said I was very brave. He said he had just been wandering about me.

I told him I would come back one day soon. I told him a lie. I knew I would never see him again. I knew it. I just knew it.

Then he died. Then at the funeral a man we had never met walked up from the back of the church and told us some story about how God was a woman, then my sisters and I made cosmopolitan cocktails and drank one for us and one for our homie and then I forgot how to put an S in front of an A and a D and write how I felt about it. Who was that friend of yours that told us God is a woman at your funeral Dad? I mean, who the hell was that guy?

All I want to say is that when Dad died it made me really pissed off and really sad.
I hope that no one ever asks me about how I feel about it.

Since then I have seen the Rolling Stones live in concert. Since then I have gotten another tattoo. I have ridden topless on a horse on a West coast New Zealand beach with my two best friends, I have turned 30, I have turned 31, I have sat on a beach in Spain and talked shit with my sister. Since then I have graduated from University like I told him I would and landed the job of my dreams like I told him I hoped I would. Since then I have kissed boys, I have dived into the deep, perfectly clear waters of a Greek sea, I have been to visit the Queen and I have raised my glass where it has been kissed by the bottles and glasses of close friends where we have ‘cheers-ed’ to friendship and summer and the past and the future…

February 16th, 2016 – Present day.
Tonight is my 1351h single day. I am in the Gold Coast where I live with my two boys: Asa (11) and Jordan (nearly 9). I am drinking white wine and watching my fingertips dance over the keyboard while I write this has distracted me to the fact that I need to paint my fingernails again.
I have had the day off from a job that fulfils and challenges me in a way I could have only hoped when I was still hoping as that single-mother student back when these posts first started being published and I have been single for a long time. Years actually.
But what of it? What of this whole damned single project? What have I learned that warrants me taking all these alone days to learn?
The many hours both alone and in deep and beautiful conversation with friends, family and strangers has taught me that whether we take 1000 days off to try and nut it out, or we simply steal moments from the week where we are just going about daily, regular life we are all aiming to hit the same bullseye, trying to answer the same question: Who am I? Why did I let that person say that to me? What do I stand for and why didn’t I stand for it back when I had the chance? Am I likeable? Am I good? Is the past in the past? Or does it still gnaw at my achilles tendon? Am I an asshole? Was my dad an asshole? Do I really know my mother, am I learning whatever lesson I was supposed to be learning this whole time?……

In other words: What the hell man?

And what the hell do I know for sure?
I know that I am absolutely happy, kind of confused, a little bit wary, definitely alone and hoping that in concluding that 1000 single day project you dont even come to me for advice… because im still working it out, but I hope that maybe we can get together sometime over the same terrible wine I am drinking right now and figure it out together……

 

 

 

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67 responses to The end

  1. 

    Thanks for the catch-up.

    • 

      Hello Dave, thanks for reading me and for reading my catch up. For everything I wrote there was so much I (he’d to) leave out. But as they say: The devil is in the details and I’m trying to keep that devil down.
      Thank you again friend.

  2. 

    Loved it!! Glad to see you back… kind of dealing with the same thing, dad didnt die, but a part of me feels like it has…

    • 

      Hey honey. I would encourage you to do this (if it is safe for you to do so): Connect with him one more time. Even if it is just to say goodbye. Regrets hurt the strongest of all our wounds and no matter what wound he has inflicted on you to make you wary of him, don’t let your own regret hurt more. I understand that it can be hard, I faced my own ‘hard’ that day I drove up my dads driveway to say goodbye, completely unaware that he was about to die. But you know what? It was one of the better things I have ever done.

      Food for thought of something to throw out, I’m not sure. But regardless: I stand with you.

  3. 

    This my dear Vanessa is called life…the ups and downs…the smiles and tears! They shape us, each and every experience, relationships, loving, hating, challenging, celebrating, grieving, loss, despair, joy, parenting, loving, losing, finding and seeking. Life in its glory! Embrace, enjoy and pass on the appreciation for all its ups and downs with your children and your children’s children! Xxx PS RIP John

  4. 

    So glad to hear your words again. It’s tough being single, it’s tough being a parent at the same time, and it’s tough when you lose someone. I’ve been struggling with my own blog, been very on and off with it, I have written stuff, but it remains on my hard drive. I don’t know when I will share it, but the urge to write is there. You may have just spurred me on to get on with it. I’m nearing 1100 single days myself, I have discovered a large part of me that had been hidden for many years, there’s still more to find, but I am in a better place than I was over 3 years ago. I have found a much happier me, even though I struggle everyday. Really good to hear from you again.

    • 

      Hello my love.
      I say ‘my love’ because you share my love: to write.
      Never ruin love with a sense of obligation or hurriedness. If you love to write, then write when you feel it in you and respect it enough to give it space when you don’t.

      Aren’t we lucky? We have discovered time my love! Time to do things and time to not do things. Time to love and 1100 day not to. Aren’t we SO lucky…

      • 

        Thank you for your kind words Vanessa. There are so many things to love in this world, and the ones that make you happy are the most important. And the one that we have forgone for well over 1000 days is not the only love that exists, and it proves it when we omit it from our lives for a while. Andrew.

  5. 

    Amazing. First came across your blog back in the early days of those 1000-odd and it’s fascinating to read this and get some perspective. *applause*

  6. 

    You are just doing exactly what you should be doing Vanessa, your following your heart the best you know how.
    Whether it is ‘so called’ right or wrong is irrelevant…you are being you, and by that also attracting just what you need to find her, that single mum, single life, 31 year old beautiful lady….who will now really appreciate what life brings up, just because of the pain, hurt and confusion you have already experienced, and will see that there can be love in the world, and really appreciate having it shared with you BECAUSE of what you have been through.
    It is called loving yourself, through that pain you will now have much empathy for you and others because of that journey, and slowly you will understand that your dad was exactly what he needed to be so you could find this out. Painful yes, but done with a love like no other.
    That is the journey, to find that love within, release your fears…and then you will finally, truly see what unconditional love is, in all its beauty, just by doing those things.
    Love and light for your journey, just as your dad gave you on that one day. He is proud of who you are, exactly as you are right now. He doesn’t want you to be anything else, or you will lead a life of lies, just as you said.
    Stand in your truth, speak just as you have now, it releases so much and allows you to be free. That is you giving love to yourself by releasing what is no longer you. A healing by standing in your heart. It will lead you to a love and happiness like no other.
    He did love you with all of his heart, but was just afraid, as we all are, in expressing that. But he did love you regardless…believe that. And believe in you. Namaste

    • 

      I have just read many, many comments and all of a sudden: Your one. The one that made me cry. DAMN YOU! 😉
      THIS is the purpose of writing, to connect with people far, far away, hence establishing a sense that we can spew words onto a piece of paper or onto a screen and one day some one will pick it up and GET WHAT YOU WERE SAYING. Humanity.
      Thank you for ‘getting me’ and thank you for taking the time to write back and remind me that no matter how many days I’ve ‘been alone’, that I never really was.

      Namaste.

      • 

        My pleasure Vanessa, your never alone even though at times it will feel like it. But those are the times that the people we love ARE always there, in heart if not in person.
        Crying is good, it releases all those pent up emotions and allows the truth of who you are to shine through. You are shining well young lady, just follow your heart, the truth within, and it will always guide you truly 🙂 Namaste

  7. 

    Good to see you again. 🙂 Thanks for sharing whatever part of your life you could with us, it was very brave of you! Godspeed and God bless!

  8. 

    Hello! I have wondered about you and hoped you were well. Always do whatever you need or want to do love. All the questions you wrote at the end, I wonder them too, but know you have inspired myself and many others. Thanks for the update. I’m sorry to hear about your dad, and congrats on your graduation and landing your dream job. I’ve just moved to Britain to do the same 🙂 xx

    • 

      Aren’t the questions we ask the absolute REASON we live?!?! Isn’t that a uniquely remarkable part of having human awareness? And the fact I have human beings that are wide spread around the globe all telling me that they have asked the same questions and continue to ponder on them makes me realise that so long as we keep doubting our answers, we will be in the good company of the others, like yourself, who validate the search of the truth. Thank you.

  9. 

    Vanessa, It is strange how the world of blogging creates a sense of knowing people who are distant and different in so many ways. Your gift of expression, skill as a writer, and the honesty that I think fuels it all make me feel as if I do know you. i missed you while you were away, prayed that you were alright, and am delighted to have heard your voice again.
    So, let me say that I am truly sorry over your loss and your grief. As a person who is highly distanced from my father, your pain struck me in a deeply personal place. Knowing where you are and what is up in your life will allow me to pray for you in a more informed manner. Again the weirdness of the blog universe, you are a part of the pack of people who I pray for.
    So, blessing to you, I wish that your life will continue to be full and filled with God’s grace, and I selfishly hope to be blessed by more of your writing.

    • 

      Steve I would say that you know me more than the many people who claim to know me because you have read me. Thank you for your condolences, thank you for taking the time to get to know me through my writings. It is a very vulnerable part of who I am. Do you know that most of the people I ‘know’ and socialise with have no idea that I write? In a way I think I prefer it. In a way I think it is beautiful that I reveal my true self to people who I may never meet. The ones who I socialise with know my face, but you know my soul.

      I like that.

  10. 

    I came to the same conclusion a few years ago and all I can say is Congratulations!!!

    I cannot promise you that life will always be great and fair. In fact, it won’t. But, I can promise you that you are ready for it, no matter what.

    And that my friend is HUGE!!!!!!

    Love,
    Sara

  11. 

    Very moved by this. Thing is that same bull’s eye keeps moving. x

  12. 
    mywonderfulplanet February 17, 2016 at 2:17 AM

    Thank you, I have been waiting for this for a very long time 🙂 Well done for your achievements and good luck in the future. Come back every now and again, I enjoyed your writings, you have a great talent!

    • 

      Hello you. Thank you for waiting for me! Thank you for your words and your thoughts, I wonder if people like you know how simple words that you say makes very un-somple and remarkable differences to people.

  13. 

    This post is the human condition personified, thank you for reconnecting with us through your words.

    In the end, we can only be responsible for our own happiness. Getting to that understanding hurts, it hurts like hell, but you have not only pushed through that hurt, you have shared your journey which allows others to mindfully aspire and ultimately choose happiness. Everything boils down to love and fear – acknowledge the fear, but follow the love. Even the worst parts of the experiences with your Dad have helped you to dig deep to find that love. Even though you say it is the end, I can tell from your words it is only the beginning. I wish you the continued ups and downs of life that will allow you to discover, reflect and fall into that love that links us all together.

    Godspeed my fellow spirit…

    • 

      My soul sister! You GET IT! Do you know what my mother told me once? She told me this: “Vanessa, do you know that the opposite of love is not hate; it is fear”
      When we concur fear, there is only love.
      When I concurred the fear of revealing myself to the world, the pay off was love, From people such as yourself.

      Thank you for proving that.

  14. 

    I also just came back to my blog after almost 2 years of silence (April 2014)… so I completely understand how hard it is to start again and all the questions and struggles you went through while away from the “pen”

    • 

      Remember that even true love has to have timing on its side to work.
      I love the pen. So do you.

      Respect it enough to give it distance when it has no ink and to then write furiously when it does.
      I hope you write when your pen is full and relax and absurd the words when it is not.

  15. 

    Welcome back… Can’t imagine your loss till date

  16. 

    Good to hear from you. It’s a big lump in the fabric of our lives when we lose our closest kin. Glad you’re back X

  17. 

    Just so you know, you don’t truly owe me or anyone else anything, except for love. If you need a break, now or later, take one, however long. I’m glad you did and hope you will again if need be, even though your writing is so honest and open and, quite frankly, amazing and memorable. But all you owe is love, to all men. I think you know that, and it shows. I’m glad you’re happy. Don’t give up the seeking. Like you said, suspense and wonder are very precious.

    “Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.” (Rom 13:8 ESV)

  18. 

    Very sad to hear this and the process that you’ve gone through, but it sounds like a journey you needed to have ~ and you write about wistfully and powerfully at the same time. It is good to read you again…I had forgotten.

  19. 

    Glad you made it through ok. I love your writing, and I hope you carry on.

  20. 

    Sorry to hear about your father. It’s great to see you writing again. You have a beautiful way with words!

    Don’t stop…

  21. 

    Welcome back! I am very sorry for your loss, but am happy that you are writing again. You were missed.

  22. 

    I hadn’t read you in over two years. I hadn’t written myself in over two years. Now I can’t believe that the day I write something is a day (give or take since we’re half a world apart) when you write again! Great timing kid! Keep it up…

  23. 
    wheelie boy. really. February 17, 2016 at 4:14 PM

    Thanks for the round off. I was there too. Almost family by proxy. You are one heck of a battler and come through on your dreams. Mum is so proud of you, but that goes for the whole bunch. I know. I was there.

    • 

      🙂 Whoever you are, and however you were there: Thank you.
      I was given legs during that time by people who gave me theirs to borrow when I felt I had none of my own to stand on. Thank you for your legs. Thank you for being there.

  24. 

    Good to hear from you! I’m so sorry to hear about your dad, I also lost my stepdad recently, and I also hadn’t seen him in years… hope it feels good to get these words on the page at last and put this project behind you. Much love! ❤

  25. 

    Thank you for giving me a nice reminder to tell my dad (and mom) how much I love them. Your words are beautiful. You don’t need to carry the burden of figuring everything out. You simply sharing your story openly and honestly helps me and others through our own journeys. And never ever apologize for taking a break.

  26. 

    Just the other day I was thinking about you… good to see you’re still out there!

  27. 

    I love the way you write, thank you for not giving up but instead letting it empower you. You’re Amazing.

  28. 

    Ah, but no less sincerely, Ms. [Now @over 1300 ; ] I can now, somewhat the more impressedly congratulate you upon your dabblings into true wisdom:
    “Lies come to our aid on horses that can gallop faster than those carrying the truth.”
    -I DO believe that is the first imminently wise thing I’ve read from you.

    & welcome to the ‘Lonely Planet’ club!
    1st rule of membership: ‘It’s more enjoyable to savor what we can afford of quality, than to consume ALL you can afford of quantity!”

    And no, I wouldn’t say you’re an ‘asshole’ per-se, so you may give the bragging a … ‘lie-down’?, surely. X) An ‘asshat’ as you’re previously so fond of saying? Perhaps, if not especially ‘committed’ to so much as whatever that’s supposed to mean. (Baffling and mystifying how consistent ‘projections’, no less than delusions can be–is it not? ; )
    = Now just remember the second, and another essential membership rule:
    2) “Church and State shall remain separate, lest they both lose their ‘equilibrium’.”
    + “NOTHING is resolved by wine nor song …and certainly not whilst either’s mixed liberally with women!”

    [Wry chortle–& I kid you not ; ]
    ~Sirly J.

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