I know you.
You’re the kind of man who thinks you are your own man. Intelligent, proud, a man of your word, decisive, and you don’t accept any guff from anybody. A strong man with a strong will.
Every day, you make your regular morning run at a steady gait around the neighborhood, which have been built almost a century ago. You are pleased with the old style neighborhood, a reflection of the times when life was simpler. The streets lined with trees.
Inside the homes are found the latest gadgets and activities: Laptops, Smart TVs, Satellite dishes, electronic games, and the people going about their business with smart phones. This, also is another reflection of the times.
You smile as you turn into your home and see just outside your gate the old fashioned post mounted mailbox with brass flag that is still in use. You get your mail from inside the mailbox and you notice a letter from among the newspapers, magazines, brochures, and other letters addressed to you.
Strange, you think. The letter is postmarked the year before and looks it, with yellowed envelope and rust stains around it. It was forwarded through my old address. After that it must have been stuck here in the mailbox unnoticed for some time before it got loose somehow and joined the others.
The letter reminded you of a painful episode in your life. You set it aside for later reading. After all, it is old, and the pain has come and gone for almost a year. Surely, whatever the contents, it would have been over long ago. So, being a man with strong will, you resolved to read it later, preferably late at night after you have done with your day.
Later that night you examined the old letter. Thankfully, it came from the best friend of your fiancee.
No, you corrected yourself, an ex-fiancee. No, you corrected further, someone whom you met some time ago. You are adept at changing your feelings of pain with a change of labels: from fiancée to a someone you have met.
You open the letter and begin to read. You were expecting some harsh language but surprised there weren’t any.
The letter begins with well-wishes for you and for your present circumstances. It related some incidents at the school. You have to remind yourself that this letter is almost a year old, and you felt some of the old excitement and anticipation as you were busy with the preparations with graduation.
The topic shifted to how much she was envious of the relationship you had.
You can’t help it. The things she mentioned stirred memories. The things you vowed not to recall you remembered. You remembered the times when you and your fiancée had long walks together. About the times you shared meals: the sounds, the food she served you, and the laughter. The conversations about how you are going to live together after graduation.
And you remembered the vow you made to her: that she will always be in your heart.
And you remembered how it all ended. You saw her inside a car with another guy, her hand on his shoulder and laughing.
You felt you heart break and you slumped against the wall, your mind a blank. You didn’t move until their car moved away.
Angry and decisive, you immediately went to your apartment. You spent some time writing a harsh letter, calling her names that you wouldn’t say in your right mind against the woman you love.
You left the letter on the floor where she would see it. You packed your things and bags and left the apartment, the life on campus, and the pain. Luckily you were allowed to graduate.
You went from place to place, leaving no trace, making sure that she wouldn’t find you. Until you found this old neighborhood and resolved to forget and to make a new life for yourself. A decision made by a strong man with a strong will.
And you succeeded in forgetting. You were making a life for yourself, until this letter from her best friend came.
You notice how the topic changed again, it is now talking about the day of the incident when your world crumbled.
The letter tells of how a first cousin of your ex-fiancee arrived on campus with a new car and he was showing off his new possession. They were driving around.
They were enjoying the ride, and when the cousin told a joke they slapped him on his shoulders.
You had to read that part again. They, meaning the cousin, your ex, and her best friend were driving around.
Her best friend was at the back seat of the car.
You didn’t see her.
You remembered at the time how angry you were, and made a decision to end it immediately. You were too decisive. Now you feel like a fool.
You continued reading. About her frantic search to find you. About how she found your letter in the apartment. About the failures to locate you. About her tears.
And then a bombshell. She was pregnant. With your child. And her decision to have it rather than to abort it. A symbol of your love, your hopes, and your plans.
And you feel twice a fool.
The letter ends with how your ex-fiancee has become a shell of her former self, only smiling when taking care of your child.
Your mind has become blank. It is too much to absorb. Your hand is shaking as you put the letter on your desk.
You are in that position for a long time. Slowly, slowly some realization seeps in.
She was really faithful. You have a child. You don’t know how she is now. It has been almost a year.
And you finally acknowledge your stupidity. Your foolishness. And remorse. A great feeling of sadness and regret descends on your mind and your heart. You feel a great burden that is almost as strong as the original pain that started it all.
What are you going to do?
You stand up and pack up your things and bags. The things and bags are fewer than when you did it in the apartment almost a year ago. You are now again impatient, this time for the morning so that you can leave.
This time you’re leaving to go back to her. You are going to look for her.
A decision made by a strong man with a strong will. You will ask forgiveness. You will ask to be taken back. You will make amends for the hurt you caused her.
You hope you are not too late.