I believe that all of the demons dancing around infernos, waving their pitchforks above them and rejoicing in our destruction, reside in our psyche and constitute the perpetual hell of our own making. Love balances on a knife’s edge, teetering between the divine and the aforementioned inferno. If we think too much about what’s at stake where our heart is concerned, we can rest assured that our head will find a way to tip love into the fire. Because we are all uniquely self-destructive snowflakes. Yay, us.
In my life, I have let someone go for what I thought was their own good. My head told me that I was doing them a favor. My head at the time and for much of my previous existence to that point, was astonishingly full of shit. Despite this, its arguments were compelling enough to convince someone (me) that chivalry demanded that I save this other person, this delicate flower, from what would inevitably be a life of pain and woe. I left. She was devastated and confused. Not my finest hour.
The other instance, of which I lack experience, involves letting go of the person you love because they are a physical, emotional, and/or spiritual vacuum. Love holds on in spite of their ability to make you yearn for the sweet release of death. In stark difference to above case, your sense of self-worth and self-preservation take precedence. This is healthy where the above scenario is decidedly unhealthy, bordering on the kind of destructive neurosis known only to Jews and chihuahuas (it’s how I’ve always explained their bulging eyes and shaky dispositions).
But the question: How does one look at the woman they love and convince themselves to walk away? The only answer I can imagine without some sort of background for context: There has to be a part of you that wants to burn. Because no matter the reason, good or bad, sound or insane, it will burn. You’ll pull the trigger on the starting gun and the sound that will resonate in your mind for days or maybe years will be, ‘What if?’, and all of those little demons with their implements of pokey destruction will breach the castle gates and they will beat the hell out of your frontal lobe. For awhile, anyway. It won’t be good.
And then again, it won’t be so bad, either. At least not in hindsight. Time heals all wounds, etc., etc. Love is dangerous because the contrast between pleasure and pain is black and white. There is no gray. People who say they’re ‘kind of in love’ either aren’t at all or are fooling themselves. When you are in love, however, giving up on it, regardless of why, burns. It takes either a coward or the bravest person alive to willingly throw themselves flame-ward. It’s also instructive, however, to remember that in either case, love was felt, even if only in passing. In this regard, it’s better to burn then to never have seen the fire at all.
For the IndieInk Writing Challenge this week, Chimnese challenged me with “How do you look at the woman you love, and tell yourself that its time to walk away? ” and I challenged Jordan with “I killed a man with a flugelhorn. Not out of spite, but because he told me I wouldn’t.”
Sir @ April 19, 2012