Certain sounds can cause an immediate reaction in your memory. What causes this initial reaction and why does the mind seem to play tricks on us or at least makes us wonder if that memory ever took place or we just imagined that entire scenario? I have experienced this very feeling more than I care to recall, it causes me to wonder what reality is and what my dream world is. I have always been quite aware of my vivid imagination and wonder if my mind makes me think that certain ideas and memories are reality when they are indeed nothing.
The memory of a snow plow scraping against pavement always causes the same reaction in my mind, one of loss, a bittersweet memory that makes me thoughtful, sad and happy all at the same time.
This morning I was woken by the snow plow as I had been one time before, however, this time was very different and as I began to recall the first time I was woken by a snow plow, I lay back down on the pillow and remembered.
An evening in February, frigidly cold, but I didn’t notice. Before me, across a restaurant table, was the man I loved, holding my hand and telling me how much he loved me with tears in his eyes. His gorgeous hazel eyes glistening as he begged me to forgive his behavior and love him just as I always had loved him.
“You are the very air I breathe,” I tell him as he grips my hand tighter.
“How can I love you so much and then watch you walk away, when all I want is to be with you all the time?” he asks me.
“You have to tell me what you want in life before I make such a life altering decision or you just have to watch me walk away,” I respond with tears in my voice and eyes. “I would never force you to do anything.”
The snow begins to fall outside the building as we attempt to talk about football, work and whatever we can think of just to spend time with each other, knowing that our time is sweet and limited.
We walk to the car intoxicated with the love we have for each other and wanting the night to last forever.
Driving down the street, a familiar song plays on the radio, he turn up the volume and grabs my hand and brings it to his lips. My entire body shudders as I wonder how I can love someone so deeply that a touch and look can send me into an entirely different dimension where no one can reach me and anyone that chooses to join me. Not really physical, not even sensual, just a spiritual dimension where no one else exists except the individuals I allow to enter.
A traffic light causes us to stop and we stop singing and humming along with the song, he lights a cigarette and rolls down the window to let the smoke out of my car. While doing this, he never lets go of my hand, as if letting go would show weakness or letting go of the moment. A car pulls alongside my car, it is a co-worker.
“What are you guys doing out this late and in this weather?” the driver of the other car asks.
“Oh, just talking about work and how much it sucks,” he responds laughingly and looks at me.
The light turns green and I drive to his apartment. He doesn’t even ask if I want to come up, I get out of the car and the silence surrounding us is comforting, shielding us from real life, blanketing facts that we choose not to acknowledge.
Even though he didn’t ask me to come up to his apartment it is said with his look and touch and we ride in the elevator. We are finishing our conversation about music that we have been discussing for the last 20 minutes and once in his apartment it is instant.
We start kissing and grabbing each other as if we cannot get enough of each other. We want to envelope the other, to consume each other, to be one and never separate. We make love passionately, but then it has always been like that between us. We love like it will be the last time. It is slightly different this time, we are crying, loving each other in ways we never had, tasting each others tears, defying everything around us to dare come between us and try to separate this love.
Exhausted I fall asleep in the arms of the man I will love forever, regardless of where life takes me. I awake to the sounds of the snow plow scraping the parking lot downstairs. I forget where I am at first and then he kisses my nose, when he knows I hate anyone touching my nose, but this time it is forgivable. A flood of emotions covers my entire being as I realize that this is where I want to be forever and ever. Our love, my love, makes me feel forever safe and nothing can shatter this love. The snow plow continues to scrape the snow away as I unknowingly am scrapping away the love I believe I cannot live without.
Presently on this morning I once again hear the scrapping of the snow plow outside of my rural home. I remember that morning long ago and the memory causes me to want to cry however, I cannot let my family see weakness. I am a wife, mother of two boys and caretaker of an elderly grandmother. I get out of bed to wake my children, no nuzzling kisses this morning from my lover. I wake my husband, no loving caresses to chide me from the warmth of bed and love-making.
Will this memory always hurt so much or will pain grow to fondness and then never be remembered again. The reality of the memory still is hauntingly painful but I am not ready to let go of that love even if it is just a fleeting memory.