Springtime is here! Winter gave its last gasp last week, and it’s beautiful and warm now. I absolutely love the spring. The trees budding out, the grass beginning to grow, the warm sunshine; it always helps my mood improve.
This year though, it’s just a little sad.
It’s not that my love of spring has diminished in any way. I’m still ecstatic that winter is over. But the thing is, I had an absolutely awesome spring and summer last year, and it makes me a little melancholy that this year is going to be different.
Last spring started with a new relationship. I really wasn’t looking for one, and didn’t think I was ready. But we had been emailing for a while and finally decided to meet. Wow. She absolutely swept me off my feet. Not love at first sight or anything, but she was absolutely beautiful, and we sat and talked (and laughed) for hours at our first meeting. Neither of us wanted to leave. And we quickly became the best of friends.
Then it started to change…
She invited me over to her place for some dinner, and later a fire in the fire pit. The stars were shining, and a full moon was peeking through the trees; how could it not be romantic? I can still remember the sweetness of the first kiss, and the electricity that shot through my very core.
But this is not a story of lust.
I was having the time of my life. We took a trip to the mountains together. We laughed so hard on the drive up, that I missed an important turn and we ended up taking an impromptu tour of a little town off the highway. The weather was gorgeous, and so was she. Walking around the little town we stayed in, holding hands, visiting the little shops and walking through an art show that just happened to be there. It was magical. And the laughter continued… Trying on silly hats, making fun of the other tourist (I know, not cool) and just generally cutting up. We had dinner in a little romantic restaurant, and spent most of the night sitting on the deck and talking about anything and everything. (And so on…. But enough of that)
And so it went.
As spring moved into summer, we became more of a couple. I began spending time at her house in the country. We picked blueberries from a huge bush in her yard, watched the grapes mature, cut the grass together and just enjoyed each other’s company. Nights were spent cuddling together on the couch watching a TV Series we had gotten into, or even just relaxing and watching her ‘push a needle’. (She knitted like a fiend, LOL) There were still fires outside, and as it got even warmer we would play in the kiddy pool she had for her son. As silly as it sounds, sitting in 8 inches of warm water under the stars, splashing and laughing is more romantic than you’d think.
We still took our trips together. A day at the beach; nosing around antique stores; hanging out with friends; it didn’t matter what we did, as long as we were together.
And the passion. Suffice it to say that I’ve never known anyone like her. But again, that’s not part of this story.
But good things can come to an end. My disease began to creep out and, in spite of the fun I was having I began to get depressed. Summer was coming to a close, and my annual fall depression began to take over. I fought it hard, but it was just too strong. I have to say, she was great about it. She understood what it was like to be bipolar, and was very supportive of me. But things begin to go downhill fast, and my summer ended in an absolute disaster.
This time, the illness won.
She was still supportive and understanding. But she had a family to protect, as well as herself. As painful as it must have been, she decided that we were better off as friends. (At least that’s how I see it). Whatever her reasoning, I don’t blame her a bit. Being with someone who is bipolar is difficult at best and impossible at times. And so, we moved on. It was very difficult at first, for both of us I think, but really better in the long run.
I still miss her though.
The good news is, through it all we have remained friends. New relationships have developed, jobs have changed, new places to live; but still we can talk and share as we always have. I’ve never been able to remain friends with anyone after the end of a relationship, but the connection that brought us together was strong, true and deep.
She is my truest friend to this day.
So yes, the beginning of spring brings back all the sweet memories of last summer. Who knows what the future will bring; no doubt there will be other summers ahead that bring just as much joy. Even with the sadness that this summer is different, the memories I have make me smile. And as I move ahead, the wonderful time we had is always something I’ll be able to carry with me.
As an aside… This is my story. She may have a different view and perspective. I can’t and won’t speak for her. She knows that I write, and if it hurts her or makes her uncomfortable in any way, I have to apologize. I hope she understands that this was an important part of my life, and as I share, anonymously, it’s a celebration of experience. I mean no harm.
It was the summer of a lifetime, and I’ll always treasure the time we had together.