Knock Wood

On average, every other day I think of a topic to write about and almost as fast as they come, the ideas trickle out of my mind and into the nearest dust bunny. Funny thing though, when I began to poke around and see what I’d written most recently (a post I’d forgotten about) I realized that inside of one month my life did a 180. Sit down, let me tell you about it.

I booked a flight to Chicago for a visit and spent about five days in mid-May reconnecting with friends, family and the city of my heart. Shortly before that time and since I’ve been back, I’ve had several moments of having truly settled in here. It began with the first time I went to a local bar where I’d previously only been in groups or with at least one other. I got brave, walked in alone and saw three people I knew followed by a few more. It doesn’t sound like much, but it felt like I’d made a social stride of sorts. I did the same with another place and before I knew it, was surrounded by eight or nine familiar faces. It was as if something had clicked and I’d finally unlocked the social vault. Timing, they say.

Then I went to Chicago. I’d spent two nights there and on the third, met up with a large group of old friends in a lovely beer garden. Sometime around midnight, right as the party began to break up, I received a text from a number I didn’t recognize. I showed a friend and she verified that it was, in fact, my former love. You may recall him referenced in this post from December. I was floored (and confused and completely elated). We’d not spoken in almost eight months. Last I knew, he hated every cell in my body and I presumed that we would never speak again. My heart broke every time that thought occurred to me, in spite of the decision to move away from him.

Forward about 20 minutes, a train ride south and brisk walk to a seat in the park across from his apartment. I sat down, wordless. Soon, speech began to flow out of him. He told me of the changes he’d made, of his undying love, we compared notes on the games of telephone of things we’d said about the other that seemed to dog us amidst our mutual friends. We spoke of the inability and disinterest of successfully dating others, of the seemingly hundreds of times we’d wished to text the other about an inside joke or image. It wasn’t 10 minutes before we were laughing through the tears. It was, pardon the hyperbole, a miracle.

In our time apart, we had both grown immeasurably (and more importantly, independently). We had turned corners on our own terms, after breaking the co-dependent cycle we’d fallen into. We grew up and it was very distinctly time to face each other and make some decisions. Or rather, talk about making decisions. So we do. He was just in Cleveland to visit me last weekend, in fact. I showed him my new city and it felt so wonderful to have him in my home; the first home he’s ever known me to have alone.

To read the previous post which was written over two months ago, to know how I felt as I was typing those words to how I feel now is almost overwhelming. I believe in changes. I have to believe that people can change when they truly want to. It’s not about a leopard and its spots, it’s about knowing in your heart that things can be better and making them so. If we can’t improve, why get out of bed in the morning? Everything is different. Everything is brighter. It’s truly amazing and every day, I have to stop myself and be grateful for opportunity taken. I’m happy. And even better than that, I’m at peace.

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