It was in the nights I spent letting my tears trickle onto my lavender pillows, that I often wondered why Apple never created an app for heartbreak. iHurt seemed like a fitting name. The idea could hardly be novel in this time when anyone with internet access could upload, download, or Google all of life's answers if they wanted to.
I stayed up late, reading up on characteristics of the Aquarius man, trying to dissect his thought process, thinking that the outcome may have been different if I had known this before and not after. In these moments, I sought resolution with Jermaine, but instead found what I did not know was lost. It's funny how often we find the things we have forgotten, weeks, months, years after their disappearance in search of yet another prized possession.
The day I met Jermaine was not memorable. A lounge. He bought me a drink. We exchanged numbers. I don't even remember the first time he called, or telling him I had children, twins from a previous relationship. I don't remember when I started calling him “Harvard” occasionally, a reference to his alma mater. I don't remember ever taking him seriously in the beginning because we'd spend a night talking and laughing and dancing like school children and then he wouldn't call for 2 weeks.
He would text. He did that often, but it was always only to say, "hello" or "I miss you", but never to say "Are you free Friday?" or "Keep this weekend open for me." When we did get together, it was when we accidentally ran into each other at a party, in a crowd of local elite. He'd joke "You should come home with me tonight."
"If I do that, I'm afraid we'll end up naked."
"That sounds like a brilliant plan."
But we didn't end up naked, because I was determined to leave something to the imagination so instead we lay in each other's arms until we both fell asleep and spent the morning hours having pillow talk. Once I shared the story of the day my father passed, and he told me his grandmother died of a similar illness. He told me about his travels around the world and showed me artwork from China, and Ghana, and everywhere else the mind only dreams of.
Another night. I had too much to drink. He took good care of me. After the second time I threw up, he let the top down on his convertible on the ride up the highway back to his place. The September breeze felt euphoric and that night I slept like a baby. This time, in the morning we talked about intellectual things like Deepak Chopra's Seven Spiritual Laws of Success and Miguel Ruiz's The Four Agreements.
Missing someone does not mean they are supposed to be in your life.
"Choose your feelings. Don't let someone else do that for you," he'd say. "But I can't change the way I feel." "If you don't believe you can, then you can't."
I started to enjoy him. I enjoyed not just being with him, but the texts in the middle of the day when we were apart. I enjoyed the impromptu phone calls that came few and far between but delightful nonetheless. Half a year went by this way enjoying each other with no real commitment or expectations, just ease and contentment.
According to his astrological sign, Jermaine was an intellectual, a free spirit who met anyone challenging his independence with disfavor. I ignored the things I did not like about him, his over attention to details, his religion, or lack thereof, his sexual innuendos that made me slightly uncomfortable. I ignored these things because he felt good and it was a feeling I had missed. My body was curious to know his, but my mind was set on leaving that piece of the puzzle a mystery, like that unopened box in Cast Away. Saving it meant there was always something to look forward to.
And then one night at his place, I let him in. It started with a kiss. He sat me on top of him, straddling his thighs, grabbed my chin in his hand and kissed me long and hard. Then my insides dripped like ice cream left out on the counter too long and I was ready. It started with a kiss and it ended with Jermaine penetrating not only my body, but every other facet of my life, and he did it all with his undershirt still on.
The oxytocin didn't settle in right away. But over the following days and weeks, in between the love making, it infiltrated my body from my hair follicles down to my toenails. I could smell it when I woke up in the morning and before I went to sleep at night. It was a lovely feeling that equally comforted me and scared me