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Kymberlie Ingalls is native to the Bay Area in California. She is a pioneer in blogging, having self-published online since 1997. Her style is loose, experimental, and a journey in stream of consciousness. Works include personal essay, prose, short fictional stories, and a memoir in progress. Thank you for taking a moment of your time to visit. Beware of the occasional falling opinions. For editing services: http://www.rainfallpress.com/

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

The Traveling Soldier

He’s a little shy so she gave him a smile.  He said “Would you mind sittin’ down for a while and talking to me, I’m feeling a little low…”
All of the songs in the world are jumbled in my head right now.  In trying to reign just one out of the clouds, it only makes me feel more lost among them. 
I read a beautiful essay today titled Even Hitler Had a Wife by James DeKoven.  I’d never known of this writer before today but as everything does, his words came along at just a pivotal time. 
I’ve always been drawn to complex women. Intelligent, opinionated, philosophical, not-so-perfect childhoods, maybe a little crazy. They say it’s foolish, even dangerous to date that kind of a woman, but when is it not risky to expose your heart?
These opening lines haunted me, as they strongly resembled my former self.  Age has tamed me in this last third of my life, but at my core I still feel driven to be wanted as that girl.  The wild, complex, free-reign one who reveled in being so misunderstood. 
Today I’m chatting with three lovely bartenders about their day as I try to examine my life over a mountain of shellfish and butter drenched biscuits.  Times have changed.
My priorities have shifted.  I need to feel desired by men for my soul rather than crazy sex fantasies in the minds of wayward boys.  I want women to relate to me as a companion and not be seen as competition.  The meaning of life comes to me in the smallest and most gigantic of ways.  I am a fool to walk blindly through the songs and not listen to the words. 
This past week has been tremendously emotional.  On Thursday, I was breaking down, unable to sleep for days in a row and quite worried about my state of mind.  My husband listened with a measured ear to my tearful confessions that I was teetering on an edge.  Then Friday brought me a day long conversation with a handsome man that went long into the evening.  It was the most meaningful dialogue I’d had in some time and filled a cavern in me that had been growing wider in the lonely nights.  Saturday, I had to put on my in-charge mask as I encouraged leadership in others by playing strong and relating my own experiences.  As I tried to come down from that, I allowed myself a short time away from the world in hopes of short-term repair.  By the time Sunday came to deliver some heavy news, I was done.  My head was preoccupied with just everything. 

This wonderful new friend I had the hope of knowing and spending time with had received news that he was being transferred way to the other side of the country.  He is a military man, and our talks had been engaging on so many levels.  We both shared a love of comedy, of theatre, and long, frank conversations.  Roger is my best companion, but we all need to have our independence and outer influences.  Having lost so many of my closest friends, I’d been craving someone to come along with whom I could just be.  It is rare to find someone who demands nothing, wants everything, and will never ask for anything I’m not ready to give. 
In telling me that he had to leave, and understanding its impact on someone like myself, he’s shown patience and kept me smiling through the sadness.  He spoke of his self-obligation to do what he needed to do, but the effect it’s kept on his personal life and the love he’s had to leave behind.  “This is the life I lead.  It is what it is.”  I heard in his voice the same notes of loneliness that I often read in my own words.  It’s given me much to think about and has opened up a lot that’s been suppressed for some time.  This connection has taken me to a place I need to return to, but it is a painful place.  It is a stark reminder, however, that it’s okay to be afraid of life sometimes, but we must march forward and feel anything that we need to feel in every moment that we have. 

Pete kept telling me that if he’d known he would be receiving these orders, he would not have initiated this friendship, based upon what of me he knows.  In that, I would have missed out on this profoundly lyrical life moment, and the rarity of being understood.  I don’t know how adept I’ve become at any kind of loss, because I freewheel between detachment and stabbings of hurt, but I’m going to feel this one.  I'm slowly learning, though, the difference between death and distance. 

Songs are meant to be sung; sometimes in our heads when we can’t find the voice to sing out loud.  They surround us like clouds in a sky.  Every once in a blue moon, I have the fortune of reigning one in. 

He said “I bet you got a boyfriend but I don’t care, I got no one to send a letter to.  Would you mind if I sent one back here to you…?”

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