"Not every mistake deserves a consequence. Sometimes the only thing it deserves is forgiveness-" Colleen Hoover.
"Would you like to tell me why you're here, Miss Valencia?"
Try therapy, they said. It would help, they said. I didn't need therapy; I needed to talk to someone.
It was sad that I had to pay someone to listen to me.
"Can you keep a secret, Doc?"
I expect her to look intrigued. Sadly, it doesn't seem like it's the first time she's heard that line. She gives me a blank look and I roll my eyes. She could have at least tried to humor me.
"You're not funny, Val. You think you are, but you're not." Someone told me that once.
I don't think I'm funny, but having a sense of humor prevents people from trying to pry into my life.
A ripple in time,
A cause and effect,
One thing you wish you could change but you can't,
We take things for granted,
Without realizing how important they are.
"Her life was important. But I didn't want her to feel like she was living for me."
She doesn't ask me who I'm referring to, she just waits for me to continue. I don't know why but this makes me feel oddly comfortable like I can take my time with this.
Not because she means it,
It barely ever reaches her eyes,
She realizes she doesn't want to get away for a bit,
She doesn't ever want to come back.
"Most of her smiles were fake, but her real smile was breathtaking. I wanted her to smile that way all the time. Wherever she is, I hope she smiles that way."
Not because she wants to feel high,
But because she wants to get away,
It's funny how she thinks it's different,
It isn't, but she doesn't know that.
"She called me all the time when things went wrong. I don't think life is fair to anyone, but I don't think it was particularly fair to her. Usually she was drunk, and when that happened, there were two ways it could go, the upbeat drunk or the sulky drunk. It just mattered what day you caught her. I knew it had been a horrible day, I just didn't have the strength to be around her. I know how horrible it sounds, but I really needed a break. I needed to let go of her just for the night and then I'd call her the next day. But she wasn't there the next day."
She drinks a little at first,
One more glass and she'll stop,
That's what she tells herself,
It's not the truth,
She knows saying it's a lie will be a big understatement.
"I lied. It wasn't usually. It was always. She was always drunk. But things weren't always like that. My mother used to tell me no one could make me inferior without my consent. I don't think that's true. I think we all have our moments of weakness and that we contribute to the way other people feel about themselves. What do you think?" I ask her.
She looks at me and says, "I think we're also responsible for the way we feel."
Of course, I know that! That just wasn't the question. But since I have no one else to talk to, I continue.
She drowns in it,
A glass after another,
Her resistance is wearing thin,
But she won't stop,
She keeps going.
"I need to let her out because she's at the back of my mind. I hear her voice every time I do something. 'Can you keep a secret?' she asked over the phone. I could hear the noises in the background and the slur in her voice. She was at a bar, and she was drunk.
I think of all the things she would have said if I didn't say, 'Go home, Suzy. We'll talk tomorrow.'
When she said, 'What if we can't?' I thought she was being dramatic and I wasn't in the mood. I wanted one night to not have to clean up after her."
She knows she shouldn't,
But she doesn't care,
It's helping her so the consequences don't matter,
She solves the problem,
But she doesn't think.
"She didn't solve the problem though. I don't think she meant for it to get that far. I don't think things would have gotten that far if I had taken her home. What if it's because of the mistake I made that she's gone? What if these are the consequences of what I've done?"
I don't ask for her input here, but she gives it to me anyway.
"Not every mistake deserves a consequence. Sometimes, the only thing it deserves is forgiveness. Forgive yourself, Valencia."
Forgive myself? How could I?
Life is funny that way,
No one remembers her as anything more than an alcoholic,
That's if they remember her at all,
Many people don't,
But life still goes on.
"She wasn't just an alcoholic though. She was so much more than that, but we broke her. Her parents abandoned her and I left her when she needed me the most.
I remember her though, the real her. She drank a lot, practically all the time, but while everyone saw 'Suzy the broken girl' or 'Suzy the alcoholic', she was always 'Suzy, the girl with a storm in her eyes and the most beautiful smile on her face' to me.
I promised myself that as long as I was on this earth, she'd always have someone to remember her."
Everything mocked me,
The sun seemed to shine brighter,
The stars seemed to sparkle more,
And the flowers bloomed brilliantly,
But she wasn't here to see it.
"What if you made a new promise to yourself today?" She asks. I wait for her to elaborate because I finally feel lighter. I've gotten everything out.
"What if you promised to move on."
The idea seemed absurd and way too easy. It didn't get to be so easy when it was a problem I had been tackling for so long.
I don't believe we save each other as human beings,
I'd like to believe we do,
But that doesn't make things easier,
Because it puts more pressure on us,
I wasn't able to save her.
"Moving on doesn't mean you let go of her. It means you accept that she's gone and it wasn't your fault. Sometimes we worry over things that are out of our control when we could leave it up to God."
It's easier to believe God doesn't exist,
Especially when you're going through pain,
But what's wrong with hope,
What's wrong with a little bit of light,
When you're surrounded by darkness.
"I didn't want her to live for me. She's not here, but I know she would want me to live. She would want me to live for me; she wouldn't want me to just exist."