This is the story of me and mr. X (my other great love, before the narcissist).
Could one person be allowed this much happiness? I looked over at mr. X and I could no longer believe this was my life. Surely, all this happiness couldn’t come for free. I pictured a great Karmic Bank, with a stern banker behind a mahogany desk, pressing his thin lips together, while scribbling down: “Woman, age 28, withdrawn: 100.000 units of happiness. Overdrawn: 95.000 units of happiness. Repayment shall be made in full, with 30% interest”. I had gladly signed that contract, and danced out of the Karmic Bank. Nothing could have darkened this day…
When I had stepped into our new apartment, that day, I had put down the box I had been carrying, on the floor. The box had been so heavy, and it had been such a relief to put it down, as if I had released all the old doubts, at the same time.
The apartment was great. It was large, by no means luxurious, but it was enough. It had a good kitchen and a big balcony, where I would be able to plant some flowers and herbs soon. Spring was right around the corner and I had already looked up which seeds I wanted to buy.
Before this day of moving in together, we had spent a little more than one year, in a long distance relationship. We had been seeing each other on weekends, since that day he left my place in his cherry red car, after our tender reunion. So we had now had almost three years together, in total.
I smiled as I remembered one particular weekend of our long distance relationship. Mr. X had come to visit me in the big city. He had made the long drive, for 5 or 6 hours, on a Friday. I had gotten my first job after university. My office at the time, was at the other side of the city. I had hidden a key for him, so that he could let himself into my apartment and wait for me to come home from work. But, to my surprise, mr. X had called me that afternoon, and said: “Guess who is waiting for you outside your office!” He; the Small Town Man, had defied the City Jungle, taken the subway for an hour, to get to my office, just to surprise me! He had explained how hard it had been to find the right station to get off at, and I could believe him, since our subway system is spread wide and far, out to the different suburbs. Mr. X had just said: “I couldn’t wait one more hour to see you, so I figured I’d just start going to where you were..”
Still smiling from the fond memory, I looked up at mr. X, who was busy unpacking his clothes from various large bags, and only stopped to ask me: “Which closet do you want? I’d call dibs on one, but since you’re a little lady, you might wanna beat me to it, if you want to have the bigger one..”.
I dropped what I was holding, marched right up to him, and said: “Do you have any fucking idea how much I love you”? Before he had the chance to answer, I gave him a kiss for emphasis, as if words, language, however strong, weren’t enough, could never be enough…
The long distance relationship had been wearing us out, travelling so far on the weekends, especially since we were both working. So we had started looking at apartments online and had decided on one. I knew how much mr. X was attached to his Small Town and his family. So, I made the sacrifice of moving back there. After all, I had lived in that town before, and still had some old friends there from the university days. It didn’t seem like a sacrifice, really, when I considered the feeling of completion and happiness I felt on this day of moving in together…….
I had some moments in those days, when my soul flew higher than it ever had before…I was in a parallel universe, surrealistic… I was soaring far above the clouds, seeing everything down there, all human woes and daily complaints, becoming smaller, fading away.. All I could see from up there was tender sunshine, caressing majestic mountains, and heaven and ocean melting together in an original, deep azure shade. It must have been from when the world was new… This must have been the way it all was meant to be, before any darkness ever touched it… I thought, dreamingly.
Everything in the apartment was brand new; built for a new life. There was one living room, one bed room, an office room, a kitchen, a large hallway, and a spacious bathroom, with a walk-in closet next to it. The first days there, me and mr. X could not keep our hands off of each other… All the longing of all the week days, for over a year, was poured out into every room of our new apartment. We were so exhausted that we could barely speak, after unpacking everything and trying to empty our jug filled with passion… it was never emptied, it just kept being refilled… a touch, as light as a butterfly’s wing, in passing, when reaching for something in the kitchen, could start a fire that would have burnt down all of our old beech forest…
A look, mid-sentence (when we were talking about what furniture to buy), could undress the other, faster than any hand ever could.
That fire of ours was always flaming high, or glowing secretly, like dark lumps of coal still warm from burning, which fast will gleam orange; from just a breath of air touching them. But no matter how much these flames exhausted us and had us wondering if we were mad, we felt at peace. We had our own place now together, our fortress, where nothing could hurt us. That safety, and the commitment we had made to each other, by making this move, were like explosives right beneath the walls of a dam….
One night after making love, we lay on our backs, on the balcony, looking up at the sky. We didn’t usually smoke, but we shared a cigarrette. I was still trembling, after mr. X had let his fingers wander so carefully all over me, as if my body were his sacred temple. I rested my head on his bare chest and he held me as he was humming some old tune, perhaps from his childhood. I looked up at the starry sky. I knew someone up there had created one star in the universe, just for us, with our names on it. I focused one star in my gaze, that felt like it was ours. Just before I drifted off to sleep, I saw a thin veil of grey clouds covering our star, but it kept twinkling at me, all the way into my dream.
To be continued….