people > places > things

still.

Jessie MaComment

Surprise surprise – I dig wordplay.

Puns, metaphors, analogies, rhymes – playing with words is a hobby and habit that I indulge in heavily. Alliterations, too.  

"Still."

Its first definition indicating the lack of motion. Non-moving, static, calm. 

We were polar opposites, me buzzing around a bit too chaotically, a million miles a minute, tripping over my own pace. You were excruciatingly stagnant, to the dismay of my growing impatience. 

But patience is a virtue, one that you forced me to learn over time. 

The same way that, when you hold two heartbeats close together, they'll eventually sync up in rhythm, we met each other halfway (haphazardly, morelike). You rushing, me stepping on the brakes. 

But I needed that. That stillness. And I continue remind myself to slow down once in a while and just breathe. Embrace the silence. Soak up the present. Shut the hell up and be still

The second meaning of the word, is one similar to "anyway." 

"Anyway," the name of Mother Teresa's famous poem, paints pictures of resilience, good persevering over evil:

  People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered.  
Forgive them anyway.

            If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.  
Be kind anyway.

            If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies.  
Succeed anyway.

           If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you. 
Be honest and sincere anyway.

            What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. 
Create anyway.

            If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. 
Be happy anyway.

            The good you do today, will often be forgotten. 
Do good anyway.

         Give the best you have, and it will never be enough. 
Give your best anyway.

         In the final analysis, it is between you and God. 
It was never between you and them anyway.

 

A lot of people love, because.

'I love you because you're beautiful. Because you're kind. Because you're talented and generous."

I'm not dismissing loving someone for their good parts as not legitimate. 

But I've been truly humbled by a love that loves despite. Despite the bad parts.

A love that loves anyway.

A love that loves still.


After every bump in the road, after every transgression, I would ask,

"Do you love me?"

And you'd always, always answer,

"I love you, still."

I thought it to be an interesting play on the word's double meaning. Your love was "still"'s common denominator that linked back to both the way and duration you loved me. 

You loved me when I was able to be calm, able to find myself.

And you loved me indefinitely. Always. Still.  

What a beautiful, harmonious synergy of meaning – that you even admit to being your intention. 

Thank you for both. 


There was a period of time, not too long ago, when I was sure that I hated you. 

Til that point, I kept myself in a peaceful state of denial, telling myself that I had the one who had made all the mistakes, I was the one who had cheated, lied, disrespected, and hurt you, I was single-handedly responsible for all the bad events our relationship could not endure.

It was more comforting to think of myself as the villain, than the victim. Don't ask me how my brain works. 

But that wasn't the truth. And I knew that. You hurt me tremendously. Traumatically.

And though I'm not quite ready to write about what you did to me, the few that I did confide in about our last few weeks are appalled. Angry. They hate you for me. At the very least, they said they won't be able to see you the same way. 

When the magnitude of your mistake fully dawned on me, I couldn't bring myself to feel anything positive about you. I'd see your name on my dashboard and flinch. The image of your face would creep into my mind and I could feel my blood pressure rise. I was filled with so much delayed resentment without the chance to express it. 

It haunted me. 

I debated a number of evil plots for revenge. An amateur Gone Girl. 

Publicly shaming you for what you did was the obvious answer. When I'd get into these fits of rage, I didn't even care how much I would detest the looks of pity people were sure to give me. I was willing to sacrifice my comfort and privacy if it meant I could set the equilibrium right, to see justice and fairness prevail. I was consumed with hatred. 


The overwhelming consensus for how to treat someone who's wronged you is:

"Fuck 'em." 

Yet that mentality, that enablement to hold on to my anger, was only perpetuating my heartache. It physically hurt, every time I thought of you. 

I had yet to realize the existence of a crucial ingredient that I was missing. 

Without it, there was no chance of any stillness. In any sense of the word. 


Forgiveness, I realized, was the choice to love someone, still. 

Notice the carefully chosen vocabulary: choice.

Hatred was destroying me. And it was needlessly straining a relationship that wasn't necessary to put that much attention on in the first place. 

I found forgiveness (and the peace that comes with it) when I chose to love you, despite. Despite your mistakes. Regardless of your flaws. I chose to accept you anyway. To love you, still. 


Do I mean this in a romantic way, that I'm in love with you? God no. Far from it. 

But when I say it now, it's perhaps the most genuinely I've ever meant that I loved you. 

Because I forgive you, and I forgive myself. 

Not because I'm particularly noble. Or resilient. Or kind.

But because forgiveness looks and feels good on everyone. It frees us.

I know you pretty well, by this point, and you know me even better. 

But the part you haven't yet met is this part of me that I'm just starting to develop.

The softness in me that's able to forgive. 

The heart that chooses to love you, still. 


Our relationship was as bittersweet as they come. 

Or, more accurately, sweet-bitter. 

It was never fully developed enough to be savory, but it sure was sweet. 

Then, when things took a turn for the worst, it never got sour between us, but the circumstances sure were ugly and bitter, .

As unfortunate as it was that we both weren't ready for a truly satisfying relationship, I do think that a big reason we're able to be friendly now – even actually friends – is because of that word.

And all the meaning it holds,

still.


I do know, now.

And I love you too, still. 


P.S.
I'm sure posting pictures with a past love is something that's not normal, but ironically, I never felt like posting them when we were together. I was always held back with a mix of insecurity and uncertainty, no matter how happy we look in the photos. As 'awkward' as it's deemed, I see no wrong in paying homage to a love that just needed some learning, some catching up. That's all :)

P.P.S.
I'll never forget our last few days in our apartment, with our dog, feigning a level of maturity that we secretly knew was a lifetime away. Like trying on a pair of grown-up pants as a toddler. But those were probably the sweetest, most innocent moments, ones that make it impossible to ever not love you. How you cooked breakfast while I showered. How we'd take up a quarter of the giant bed from snuggling so close. How we had a different show to watch and a different beer to drink during every dinner. Thank you for the glimpses into a life that I'll one day be ready for. With someone I'm ready to love (and forgive, if I must).