A by Piece Of My Life

memoir of what I experienced 10 years ago


I can sum up what happened next in 4 words~ I found my way.

Took some time, that's for sure. Over time I learned how to stand on my own two feet, financially and emotionally. A series of apartments and jobs and more chaos, but nothing compared to what I experienced in 1998. I learned later that there's some official list of the most stressful things a person can experience, and I had almost all of them hit me, all at the same time. I cannot believe I survived, mentally. But as it turns out, I was in God's hands all along.

The guy was in & out of my life for another year or two, it was a hard habit to break, for both of us. But we finally did it, and the last time we broke up, in 2000, I knew that was it. He took off and moved to be closer to his family. I grew stronger and stronger and over time I regained my self confidence and motivation, which had been virtually non-existent.

How should I end this? I could draw it out and tell you more. I could tell you about the woman he stayed with, she was a customer who had carpet installed by him, she was pretty and lived alone because her husband was in prison for accidental manslaughter. Her house was filled with plants and hanging beads and incense, and I was jealous. I went over there a few times, only to see my late brother's best friend sitting there on the couch beside her, they were all toking it up! He was like, ...."hey Amy..." I was like, ok, how weird is this. We were both busted. Up until that point, I was the clean-cut older sister of his best friend who would fix them pancakes. Now I was heading to the back bedroom with my guy. It was bizarre.

I got an apartment across town, only to be ran off by a stalking underwear thief. Went to stay with my dad, where a series of incredibly bad dates/boyfriends began. One after the next, like clockwork, steadily getting worse and worse until I came to the end of myself. I broke again, but this time it was good. I was in need of a good time out. But not without seeing the guy one last time, in '03. He flew me down there and I stayed the weekend. He had a new trailer, in the woods. A dog and a cat and a whole new outlook on life. It had been almost 4 years since we'd spoken or seen each other. It was good for both of us. We didn't do it to get back together. We did it to make amends and have some closure. We got it. We both acknowledged that it was a crazy time for both of us. We both apologized for hurting the other. I told him I was sorry for putting so much pressure on him to be more than what he was. He took me to the mall and bought me things, saying that he never was able to before, and he didn't want me to think of him as a bum. I saw his brother one last time, we shot some pool and laughed and all that good stuff. We made peace. And then we said goodbye.

Like an ember that dies out slowly, that's what we did. When I got back home, we talked on the phone a few times, he wanted to go to Cancun. I stopped and thought about everything. I put on my thinking cap, which hadn't been used in quite some time. I weighed my options. And I decided that for his sake as well as mine, we should say goodbye for good. I changed my number and cut that invisible cord that was still connected to my head and my heart. Finally, I was free.

I happen to know now that he's doing good. Looks happy. Living on the beach somewhere, surfing, doing his thing. I can only hope that the time we spent together somehow benefitted him as much as it did me. I gained so much. I learned how weak I really was. You never know until you're right smack-dab in the middle of the storm. You never know.

I've grown strong. Sometimes mean. Always impossible. I don't know who to blame. My dad? All my old boyfriends? Him? Me? My dog? You?

Who knows.

Just now as I was making a cup of tea, this memory came to mind: the shoe collage.
Yes. It was my idea of course, but before long everybody was involved. You know how sometimes you'll be driving along, and see a shoe on the side of the road? For no reason? Do you ever wonder how it got there, and where it's mate was? I always wonder. I think, did somebody get mad and toss it out the window, or did a kid throw it out? Or did it fly out of the back of a truck, accidentally?

One day he & I were out driving somewhere, back when we lived at the trailer. There was an old shoe on the side of the road, which led me to think about all of the above. I told him my thoughts on it, and he agreed with me, that shoes that are abandoned on the side of the road are a mystery indeed. And that's when I got the idea: we could make a collage! From here on out, whenever we saw a shoe on the road, we'd stop and get it. He said that sounded good. When we got back to the trailer, he pulled a big piece of plywood out of the van, laid it on the ground, and got a thing of rubber cement. It was his idea to glue the shoe down wherever it landed after being blindly tossed onto the board. He had my daughter do the honors, with the first shoe. An old dirty stinky shoe. It was great. My kid laughed as she tossed it, it tumbled and landed on the board, and he glued it down right there. The collection grew fast. Everybody got involved, they said we were nuts, but for some reason more and more people were bringing us shoes and boots, the only rule was, it had to have been found on a road.

Before long we had the board covered. It was never finished. I envisioned the whole thing covered so much that it was like a pile, then, I was going to cover the whole thing in white paint and gloss it. Imagine that. A real study in texture if there ever was one. Sadly, the board with glued-on shoes was left behind at my dad's, and along with the convict's bed, it was never seen again.

© 2008 Piece Of My Life

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Thank you for sharing the amazing story. Life teaches us many things. I learn we can't change the past. We can change the future. Thank you for sharing the amazing story.

Posted 7 Years Ago

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Added on July 4, 2008


Piece Of My Life
Piece Of My Life


(true) memoir of what I experienced 10 years ago, boring maybe but feels great to tell it- swore I never would. I'm 38 and on a mission to say everything I shouldn't. Wrote this out for the first time.. more..