January 7, 2014
My parents picked me up yesterday. Bogart was distraught, but he was glad when I said I’d visit him on Saturdays. He said hopefully his mom won’t visit because he only wants to see me. But after he released me from his enormous and tight hug that seemed to last forever and prevent me from breathing properly, and after he rubbed the tears off his face and the snot from his nose with his sleeve, he grabbed my face and called me a cunt and a wanker and said he loves me. Then he slapped my face in an Italian kind of way even though he’s Cockney and told me if I don’t come back he’ll hunt me down when he gets out. This was followed by an overzealous bout of laughter after which he told me he was joking. He said he’d understand if I didn’t come back because why would anyone really want to visit him anyway. Like I said, he’s getting better, but he’s still fucking tragic. As I was leaving, he pulled me aside and told me that my mom has great tits. He said it in the only way he knows how to be discrete–just by pulling me aside, but his big mouth still could be heard by anyone within the vicinity, which included my mother. I was like, shut the fuck up I don’t want to be hearing that shit. He laughed, called me a bugger and a cunt and said, “goodbye me Constable.” Then he saluted me and walked away.
Once we were outside the doors of the institution, my parents were commenting on how sad it is that he’s so troubled, since he seems like an otherwise good kid. My mother added that it’s been a long time since she’s heard anyone say anything like that about her so she was flattered. I was like, shut up mom. She said that as a young woman, all anyone, men in particular, care about is beauty, so she had to always prove she had a personality and brains. But as she gets older, she doesn’t feel the need to prove anything anymore, so now it’s nice to know people still think she has great tits. Yeah, my mom used the word tits. I groaned and told her to shut up again. She and my father thought it was funny.
They took me out to eat at my favorite Italian restaurant and asked if I wanted to do anything else after. The truth was that I just wanted to go home, but I also didn’t want to go home. I didn’t want to see Sweetheart. I wish she wasn’t there. I wish I had my own place. Or that she wasn’t there. Going home to Pete is fine, because he knows how I am and is just a peaceful presence, and he leaves me be when I want him to. He knows how to talk to me and how to approach me, or just how to be around me so that it’s good to have his company and at the same time have my privacy and solitude. In the past if I was ashamed about something stupid I did, then I didn’t want to face him. But I’m not ashamed of anything now. I just didn’t want Sweetheart there because she is the hugest reminder of Valentina, and I’m not ready to confront that situation. I’ll handle it, I just need to do it my own way, but she is a reminder that I can’t deny. With her around, there’s no avoiding the memories and the grief. Even writing this is difficult.
But my parents took me home and Pete and Sweetheart welcomed me. Pete took the day off from work so he could be there. He’s a great friend. At first it wasn’t so bad. We didn’t talk about anything in particular. Instead, Pete had bought season 2 of “American Horror Story” and we watched the entire season. It’s his sense of humor that it takes place in an institution because he knows I’d think it was funny too and the show’s undeniably fucking awesome. And I’m in love with Jessica Lang now. Her acting talents turn me on and she’s a very hot older woman. Watching the intensity of her character is like witnessing a masterpiece being created before your eyes, like Michelangelo sculpting “Pieta” right in front of you, with every grace and skill that artists can possibly capture, and the final piece is beyond beauty and stirs the soul like nothing else.
Once we finished the final episode, I was kind of ready to just go to sleep, so Pete was putting away the left overs of the Chinese food we had ordered. I was sitting on the couch and kinda missing Bogart and Kristin and even Sadie. I even missed the guy who was always trying to grope me that never bothered me again after Bogart attacked him. He was just another character in that world with his own shit. The psychology of the mind can also form lamentable works of art that make statements about the human condition.
While Pete was busy, Sweetheart went to her room, which is really my room, and returned with a necklace for me. She handed it to me and said that the little “vase” on it held some of Valentina’s ashes. She has one too. The rest of the ashes are in a small urn which she brought out to show me. She said we can have some kind of spiritual rites to release her now that I’m out, and we can spread her ashes wherever I want, but that she and I would have the necklaces, so a part of Valentina would always be with us. I hate to say that it made me sick. My baby was just ash now, not even ashes all together, but broken apart and meant to be dispersed. I wasn’t ready to handle that or wrap my head around it.
I looked at the necklace in my hand and Pete walked in and just stopped in his tracks when he saw me there looking at it. Sweetheart was talking, I don’t even know what she was saying, but Pete hushed her by gesturing with his hand for her to stop speaking. I put the necklace on the table by the lamp and went outside to have a cigarette. When I returned, Sweetheart had gone to bed and Pete asked if I was ok. I said yeah and just laid on the couch and said I was going to sleep.
One of the best things about returning was that Gary Oldman (II) was really excited to see me. She was meowing and jumping all over me and curling up on my lap and following me everywhere. I thought she would hate me for abandoning her for so long. But she was just happy that I was back. Innocence and unconditional love, just like Valentina. So I laid on the couch and she was sitting on my head when Pete was assured I was ok and he went to bed.
About a half an hour later, I sat up and held the necklace, looking at it, and I began to cry. I hadn’t cried since the night she died. But I cried last night and the pain was immense. It was too much. And here I was on the couch, slumming in my own apartment. I got up and Gary Oldman (II) followed me to Pete’s room. I opened the door and stood in the doorway. Pete asked if I was ok and I started crying again. I asked if I could sleep in his bed. He said of course and was collecting himself to go sleep on the couch, but I told him to stay, since he has a queen size bed, there’s room. So I got into bed with him, on my side with my back to him, holding Gary Oldman (II) and the necklace, and I just cried myself to sleep. Pete was good, he didn’t say or do anything. He knows me, and knows if I needed to talk I would have asked to talk. But he just let me cry myself to sleep. And it felt more painful to cry than to hold it in. I thought it would be like a release, but it wasn’t, because there was too much to let out. Crying just made me more aware of how much was there, and how much pain I was in.
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