Memories. A lot of them have been flooding back recently. Last month one of my Facebook friends mentioned a folder next to the messages Inbox that said "other". I didn't know that this folder existed. It was there but I never noticed it before. I decided to check it out and see what was in there. It said I had 99+ messages. Most of them were from pages I had "liked" or people I had some kind of connection with. What possesses FB to just randomly dump messages into another folder? I don't know but it pissed me off! As I was scrolling down the list I discovered a name of someone I hadn't seen in 33 years. The message was sent to me over a year ago and I'm only now seeing it. That's just plain wrong. Facebook was mucking about in my personal life. Ok, yeah, I know it's free and I do love FB. I'm just grumbling because I've missed out on a full year of communicating with this person because THEY decided that the message belonged in "other".
Anyway, this is someone I dated, in what seems like eons ago. He doesn't want to hear that it's decades but it actually is. If you've read my blog from the beginning then you've probably figured out the timeline. My daughter is 32 years old. No it's not my daughter's father, it's someone I dated shortly before meeting my daughter's father.We had dated when I attended our community college, before attending art school. He moved away and the romantic relationship ended but the friendship didn't. This is someone who was there for me when I had no one else. This is someone who, upon finding out about my pregnancy, asked me to come visit him so I could get away from the situation for just a little while. He was someone who cared.
He was attending a very conservative school at the time. He was concerned about what I was going through and not about what other people would think of me being there - in my very pregnant condition. He was the opposite of what I was dealing with. I was about to lose my firstborn child because of what society and the "neighbors" would think yet, there he was, doing his best to make me comfortable no matter what anyone said about him. There was talk I'm sure. I figured the rumor mill was working overtime. I worried about what people were saying about him. I stayed in the girl's dorm during the week of my visit. The looks I got! Omg...you'd think the devil had moved to town. Did it faze him? No. He didn't care and that's exactly what I needed at the time.
He said to me the other day that he worried about me after I left from that visit and he wished that he could have done more for me. I don't know what that would have been. Some would say that a 22 year old college student doesn't know much about the world but from my perspective now, he knew a hell of a lot more than the adults around me did. He knew about the need for living in the moment. He knew about living for what's important and not for what other people think of you. He knew about the importance of connections and family. He knew what it meant to be there for someone.
My connection with him didn't change the outcome of the situation, I still lost my daughter to adoption but that was certainly not from any lack on his part. It pains me to think that he would feel any guilt or responsibility for the situation. As a matter of fact, I think at that point Catholic Charities had already gotten me to sign the adoption consent. They had me sign a consent for adoption when I was only 6 months pregnant - illegal, by the way and not just by today's laws. He did his best to help me and I will always love him for that. My point is... there are people in your life that you should cherish. There are 2 men in my life who understand me more than anyone. One was there for me when I was pregnant and the other was there for me after I lost my daughter. Both of them are cherished. Both of them mean the world to me. The first one was in my life for just a brief moment in time and now has another life, a life he loves and I'm so happy for him. I'm fortunate that I get to share part of that life again thanks to the internet. Ok yes, thanks to Facebook even though they pissed me off..... The second one is the man I married. We've been married for 31 years and thanks to him I'm relatively sane :) Thank you to both of them. I don't know that surviving the loss of a child would have been possible without them.