I think the hardest part about the end of a relationship is that everything reminds you of what is gone. Puts an exclamation point at the end of "EMPTY!" And the urge to share the little commonalities doesn't stop just because the person is no longer there.
Yesterday, driving home from work, there were think low lying clouds obscuring the mountain tops to the East. I wanted so badly to call him. The boy loves snow boarding. So much so that for one Christmas, he bought me gear and took me to nearby Mountain High. After a daunting hour or so of abject failure on my part to surmount even the tiny 10ft of "bunny hill", I fell, cracking my head hard on the ice below me one last time, and tearily declared myself "DONE." I sat drinking in the resort bar while he took a run down the mountain side. We did ultimately redeem the day overall, and the picture I took of him at dusk on the mountain is still one of my favorites. However, we never attempted to teach me snowboarding again.
Each year, as the snows hit, he would talk about "definitely getting out there this season." And each year, whether it was lack of money, time or follow through, the snow remained unseen, the mountain unvisited.
When we broke up, one of his complaints about me was that I had no interest in sharing snowboarding with him (while his new "friend" was making her Christmas list of the gear she wanted, so she could hit the slopes.) I thought it was an unfair complaint, as I was NEVER a snow girl, and he knew that when he moved in with me. (I was raised in FL, people... I don't speak snow.) Yes, there is valid complaint that I gave up without really trying much. That I refused to take part in something that was important to him. However, I was raised in a family where separate interests (even separate vacations) are considered a plus, not a minus. So I was fine with him doing it without me... I WANTED him to make snowboarding friends, hiking friends, extreme sports friends. I just didn't expect him to fall for one of them.
The view of the mountains brings all that back to me in a quick instant burst of thought, and yet still I long to call and say, "Have you seen the clouds? There'll be snow on the mountains tonight!!" For I know that thought would bring a smile to his face, and I do so miss his smile.
It is a million little things, you know, that seem hollow without the sharing. When I see a husky come into the shop, when our favorite TV show is on, when I rent a movie at RedBox, when I hear "Brown Eyed Girl" all punk-style... my hand reaches for the phone, to call, to text, to connect. Having to still my own hand, find the inner strength to resist the drug I want so much, lands deep in the core of me, a rock tearing through my heart, thudding heavily in the pit of my stomach.
Many people, dear friends, tell me that I should feel happy, lucky even, that I no longer have an unfaithful, untruthful partner. But all I can feel is the cold grey of those mountain clouds and the loneliness of unseen snow.