The day my girlfriend and I broke up, we met and talked, took a walk around the Nature Preserve, went to a restaurant and ate lunch, had a couple of drinks, and then went to a gardening store and bought each other roses and vegetables to plant.
We realized that we could not be together long-term, though after a year-and-a-half with one another, we had had a taste of permanency and loved it. However, I am in a non-monogamous relationship with my wife, and my girlfriend told me she needed a monogamous relationship she could plan her life around. I was what she wanted but not what she needed. So, I do not blame her for wanting to move on from me. No matter what my wife and I offered her for her comfort, her stability, or her well being, it was simply not enough. In her heart she loves me, but she loves me as a monogamous person loves, wholly and indivisibly. And so we found ourselves at a garden center, laughing at one another, because who breaks up and goes to buy one another okra plants?
Yet there we were. Because both of us liked okra when we were children and thought, Why not grow it now, now that we are grownups with gardens of our own?
So we bought our okra plants and our flowers, and we went our separate ways.
But that was not the end of it. For we decided no matter how hard it was we would still remain in each other’s lives and be friends. Her other friends and my other friends must have thought we are crazy. In fact, some of them literally said, Are you crazy? You can’t actually be friends. That’s just something people say when they break up. They don’t really mean it.
But we wanted to mean it. And we kept meeting and talking and crying and trying to figure things out. We got sad, we got angry, we got hopeless, and we occasionally relapsed and kissed passionately in the way that only desperation can foster.
But the point is, we did not give up on each other. Last night we went out and had a wonderful time together, and this morning I looked in my garden and found that my okra had grown. I plucked some off the stem, brought it inside, cut it up, rolled the pieces in salt, pepper, and cornmeal, and fried it.
It was delicious.
There are many different kinds of love, and breaking up does not necessarily mean the end of it. One thing I have realized is that love is always, even though circumstances may change. We still love one another, and we will continue to do so. Perhaps when circumstances change, we will be together again.