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Yeah, it's over now
But I can breathe somehow
When it's all worn out
I'd rather go without

Adrenaline Rush

You are standing at the edge of something. You aren't quite sure what is there but you can feel it calling to you. At the same time there is a familiar clearing just to your right, to your left, and all around you. This is safe ground to stand on. Do you hold your ground or do you jump across the border and cross the edge of something? There are always choices, and no matter the circumstances, you always make that choice yourself. All the mitigating referentials are of your own creation. You made your place here. The cards have always been in your hands.

Adrenaline Rush

There was a life you considered unworthy of living. You speak to yourself now. That life you have rebuilt. You overcame fears and limitations. You succeeded at things that once brought only failure. You are riding well over familiar ground and claiming victory over what once held you down. You could ride this ground forever with a smile on your face and your ego constantly expanding. There is a safety valve there. You really can't become cocky. Or at least it will never appear that way. You've become able to read the emotions of the people around you and know how to avoid offending them or turning them off. You talk to yourself. You know this is too easy.

You know it's been on my mind
Could you stand right there
Look me straight in the eye and say
That it's over now

"This will be the hardest thing you ever do."

It is a test. To walk away from a life that is giving you everything you ever asked for is not simple. You are the cheshire cat, able to let everything that once hurt you roll off your back into nothingness. You can feel things happening before they happen and already know how to react. You are moving chess pieces before anyone sets up the board. Once upon a time you were a skinny self-absorbed and defeatist geek who had terrible trouble attracting women. It made you cling too tightly to those you managed to draw into your orbit. Now you have more dates than you know what to do with and forget to call women back. You even forget their names. There is that trick you like to play. When they come home with you, the lights are turned off. You tell them you just want to go to sleep. You don't want to have sex with them, you just want to sleep with them. The thing is that it isn't a line. It is really how you feel. Sometimes you feel differently in the morning. It is amazing how attractive you become to people when you aren't desperately trying to fuck them.

We pay our debt sometime

You come to realize that this was all just a training ground. You needed to reconstruct your ego and strengthen your resolve. This feeling of invincibility you have acquired is there for a reason. Without it you could never sail into the eye of the storm and face your own destruction. It will come, and the brunt of that storm will be far more fierce than the long drizzle that led to your suicide. You are now prepared. It is time to go.

Turn around, bright eyes.

You have made all the preparations. You found a woman who gave you the right direction. She led you to someone who is supposed to have answers to your questions. You have even begun to pack. You gave notice at your job. You gave nine months notice just to be clear about your intentions. You conquered all of the ghosts of the past except one. She still lingers and always will. It will be the greatest trial of your new life. To love someone so much and yet realize that you abandoned her by killing yourself is not an easy cross to bear. And yet, you bear all crosses just a little too easily. The weight is rarely heavy any longer. It never wears you down. You keep moving forward.

Well it's over now
Yet I can see somehow
When it's all gone wrong
It's hard to be so strong

There is a land you consider sacred. The Americans call it New Hampshire. There are people there who consider you to be worthy of their love and respect. Some of them look up to you. They listen like no one has ever listened before. They make love in the summertime almost as passionately as they make love in the wintertime. Yet, you know you must go where there is no snow. They throw a party for you. They intend to wish you well, and yet the party is not yours in name. It is for a friend who is making an even bigger journey and travelling to a foreign country. There is a certain symmetry. Your friend has a friend. You have never met her before. They call call her "Toad." This leads you to believe she will be short, fat, green and covered with lumps. When you meet her, she is anything but. She is perhaps the most beautiful woman you have ever seen in your life. She is your definition of the girl you always wanted but could never be good enough for.

Adrenaline Rush

You discover that this Toad has always wanted to meet you. She has seen you before at other parties and events but never had the courage to approach you. Whenever she worked up the courage, you always seemed to be surrounded by other women and having a good time. She is there with a date. She looks into your eyes and smiles. You look back into her eyes and something happens that has never happened to you before. Something happens you never thought was possible. You fall in love at first sight and for the moment, nothing else matters.

We pay our debt sometime

It is all a whirlwind. She has to go back to her table at the club where her date and some friends are waiting. Her eyes never leave you and she makes it clear he means nothing to her. There are people you need to see as well. It is still a month before you move away to the land with no snow, but you doubt you will have time for another visit to the sacred land. The married woman you had an affair with embraces you. There is something about it you sense, and later you learn that her affair with you helped her come to a realization that saved her marriage and protected her children from an ugly and bitter divorce. You see the woman who once had an abusive boyfriend and left him for a couple of weekends with you. In the end she realized she was worthy of more than his abuse. Later she would go back to school and complete her law degree and go on to a successful career and life. There are others, but the feeling you get is that your work is complete here. And yet the eyes of the one they call the Toad draw you in and you cannot look away.

Guess it's over now
I seem alive somehow
When it's out of sight
Just wait and do your time

The decision has already been made, and you process emotions differently now. You realize that to stay at this point would compromise this Toad. You launch a whirlwind month long romance that has no comparison on heaven or earth, and yet you have to leave. To stay would make her the only reason and that is too much of a burden for any one person. You will return many times to see her. There are times when you miss her so much that you find a plane going in her direction, but still you must leave. There are promises you can never make. You never stop loving anyone and your love is unconditional. You will love her forever, and yet you have now burdened her despite your efforts not to. It would be easier to tell her that you never really loved her and to forget, but she cannot and she does not process information and emotion the same way that you do.

You know it's been on my mind
Could I stand right here
Look myself in the eye and say
That it's over now

She cries when you leave again. You hold on just a bit too tightly. You miss planes and lose jobs because you need just a few more days with her. Still, you must return. There are things to be done and a journey that remains incomplete. Eventually she will fade herself into the black. She can no longer bear the weight. You try to convince yourself that you are wrong for being able to. You realize that sometimes, for someone like you, to love someone means hurting them. At other times, to love someone means healing them. The two almost always seem to work hand in hand. It is not always apparent to us as individuals, but somewhere along the line...

We pay our debt sometime

Forward

A journey begun continues...


Lyrics to "Over Now" by Jerry Cantrell
As recorded by Alice in Chains
Copyright 1995 Buttnugget Publishing/Lungclam Music
Used without permission

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