Painful Goodbyes

02Jan08

23:18

Clyde and I just hung up from our first conversation since he reported back to duty. We spoke several times during his bus ride, and again, briefly, when he first got back on base, but this was the first time he’d called since he got back into uniform. It was also the first conversation where I wasn’t crying when we hung up. I’m glad for that. He’s told me before that it upsets him when I cry, and that he doesn’t want me to cry for him. I’d rather just cry when he won’t know about it.

I was surprised to find that he still sounds like himself, instead of the way he did when he first reported for training. Our first conversation, after he left home in December, was a difficult one for me. It was as if there was a whole new person talking to me with Clyde’s voice. His vocabulary was different, his rhythm of speech, even the tone of his voice. It took me a while to adjust and accept the fact that, for whatever reason, this was one more way that he was going to change. Then, he came back on leave, and was back to the self I had met in the first place — Gentle, charming, prone to polite euphemisms. During his last two days here, bits and pieces of the rougher side of him came back, and we ended up having a conversation about it. I told him then: I’m not complaining. I’m curious about why these things are developing at this point in time. I wasn’t asking him to change anything, just to give me some small amount of understanding as to why it is happening. Now, when I’m talking to him, I can tell that he’s aware of the changes in the way that he talks to me, and he’s trying to avoid them. It’s frustrating; I don’t want my feelings to stop him from doing whatever it is that he wants or has to do. I’m not sure if I’ll mention it to him or not.

Today was my Offical Day of Binging and Moping. I did nothing but eat, watch movies, and mess around on the computer. Oh, and cried. A lot. My roommate asked me to go out with him and his fiancee, but I said no. All I’m thinking about is Clyde, so that’s all I’m talking about, and I know it’s annoying to people. Besides, I wanted to indulge myself for one more day before I start forcing my mind and body to adjust and cope with things the way that they are, instead of daydreaming about the way that I want them to be.

Back to work tomorrow. I started vacation the day after Christmas, so that I could have as much time with Clyde as possible. I also needed the break from all of the drama and stress. I love my boss, my company and my job, but it can be very overwhelming. Still, I’m glad that it’s time for me to go back. It will be a distraction, and I could really use one of those right now.

It’s only the second night since he left, and I’m already dreading going to sleep. I really don’t want to wake up tomorrow, wondering where he is, only to realize that there are still months to go before his side of the bed is no longer empty. That’s no way to start a morning.

~Betty

 

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