I have a list of men in my life.
(Maybe I’ve told you about it before…?) I definitely wrote a poem, Poem 36 Bus Stop.
It’s been written since the day I was born and it only grows and warps by the year.
Here’s a long story about those men.
*All names have been changed to ensure animosity.*
My father is the man I have difficulties understanding. He’s the first man to hurt me at a young age. He didn’t lay a violent hand on me but he crushed me with his words at the young tender age of twelve. When dreams were only beginning to form in my still small mind, he stopped me, pushed me back a few steps and told me, as long as I was a girl, I couldn’t be what a boy could. (It certainly didn’t help that my mother felt the same.) I’m sure we’re all aware of the many poems I’ve written about my father, but here’s one: Poem 28 Confession.
I have a difficult love and hate relationship with my father. For as long as I could remember, I was just the third daughter. I wasn’t the oldest, talented Gemma or smart, dependable second daughter, Genevieve. Then, I became the pretty one when the only boy was born.
This brings me to Gabriel, my younger brother who for the longest time growing up, I hated.
I could list the reasons why the young me hated him but it all comes to one reason- he was a boy and I wasn’t. Everything he did I could never compare to. For someone growing up in a very competitive household, being told I’d never live up to him was like saying I’ll always be that child. You know, the child who fails at everything. It was being placed last in a race and not having ran at all. All it ever was, was jealousy for the love he unconditionally received.
I eventually grew out of that some years ago, around when depression pulled me into a deceitful warm hug and didn’t let go. Then, I saw things clearer than I ever had since falling into a spiral of emotional turmoil about eight to nine years ago. I saw my brother as my brother, not another player in the game of life. I’m glad I did because the person that he is now is definitely worth getting to know. And that is something I’m constantly sharing with friends and occasionally, you.
The third man in my life is my deceased older brother.
He had a very tight hold on me from a young age to about a few years ago. He was everything I wanted men around me to be because I had made up his personality. That’s the beauty of having never been alive. I was left to imagine what kind of person he would be like. And I placed this stupid expectation on others that I knew they could never live up to. He was perfect. If I linked you to every little thing I wrote about him, you’d be reading all day long. I’ve got plenty of words to say about the brother I never met. He’s the many many many dreams of a faceless guy (and you can read all about him here: June the Dreamer). (The site is no longer available to view but I will be reposting stories here.)
The fourth has got to be Niall, one of my childhood friends.
I’m going to place him over Robert and Sunday Guy, Rhett. Why, because there’s something wonderful about an innocent love. He is Shuffle. and we’ll always be the two of us. The great thing about my friendship with him is that I get to grow to be the person I want to be and I don’t feel the least bit worried he’ll look at me any differently for he’s changing too. He’s not just the boy next door who was shorter than me or the boy who sat by the window for hours. He’s the guy I can say ‘hi’ to and actually feel like I’m happy to seem him. He welcomes me for me, whatever that may be. He was also Poem 29 Seconds Pass By.
So, we’re now on the fifth.
Sunday Guy, Rhett takes fifth because, for about two running years, he lifted my spirits that school crushed. He brought me to a different place away from my reality. I wasn’t just at church idly listening to a sermon I didn’t believe in. There was him. Poem 12 Every Sunday, he was my savior and he renewed me for the coming week. It was like that for two years and I was thankful for him even though we would never meet. Then when he disappeared, I found Him. I found God and that’s been the best thing for me since.
Then there was Robert, the kindest guy in my senior class.
He was the one who won me a pink stuffed pig from one of those machines. Try as he did multiple times even when he didn’t have to, using his own money. He was the one with a bright smile and ultimately the one that broke my heart in a way I couldn’t understand. He’s sixth only because the first five are just as relevant in my life as he had been. He’s every sad unrequited love poem I’ve ever written that didn’t have Sundays, the Romeo and Juliet or childhood memories.
He was my first love, the one that dominated my first blog, my life for many years and the one that was difficult to get over.
I wrote about him in the dwelling and never stopping. He was Poem 26. Lol Let me tell you, there’s not a day that I regret being the first to fall in love. Sure, I regretted falling in the first place or saying it to him but falling in love was uncontrollable. I no longer feel at fault for having loved and I should have never been.
Wow, this is a lot lengthier than I initially anticipated. I’ve got a long way to go…
Here we go with seventh!
Jonathan takes seventh place because our friendship is important. Loss of that is the same as a loss of candid and ridiculous innocence. Only with him am I able to be honestly silly. I can be stupid and nonsensical with him and I know he’ll be the same with me. I cherish that type of friendship because if I had done this list more than seven years ago, this list would be a constitution.
I’d be comparing him to someone who left me behind.
I know that’s he’s not that person. He’s greater than that. He was the man who waited… The man who loved and loves still.
How does someone live up to something like that… well, here’s number eight. Wyatt, the guy with a big heart. He was once a great friend who became a good friend through the years only because the past tainted our friendship. Regardless, this big-hearted guy showed me that love could be unsettling and scary yet still be wonderful all the same. He’s the guy that said, he would try to get over a great love and try to love again. Trying, failing, and trying again because he knows having her didn’t mean being with her. That to me is beautiful. He’s a few blog posts and a person my mind wonders about every now and again.
Number nine goes to multiple people:
Because even though they weigh differently in certain aspects, they’re men who put me in my place… that sounds wrong. They’re people in my life who constantly shed light to my otherwise very biased opinion. A couple still does and one, more than everyone else, reminds me every now and again how to be kind just because he is the type of person to be considerate of everyone.
I’m going to end this with number ten making this a Top Ten list.
The guy in my dreams who wasn’t my brother, Robert, Niall or Rhett gets number ten.
Landon Irving, the guy in the dreams.
I have plenty of poems and posts about him. There are dreams written about him. I have a journal I keep of things I would say to him if he were real.
He gets ten because, when #1 hurts me, #2 is too busy, #3 is… #3, #4 is still not someone I could run to, #5 is #5, #6 texts days late, #7 is too rational, #8 is still broken, and any of the #9s are no longer a part of my life or is too good to dump all my negative feelings to, he used to be always there in my dreams. He’s always ready to sit down with me and listen. And when the night dreams stopped, the daydreams kept going. That’s good enough for me. Dreams are never real and I’m not out in the world expecting him. I’m not waiting uselessly. If he exists, it’d be nice to be a part of each others’ lives. If he doesn’t, the time I spent would be a nice story to tell.
#0 goes to God.
He who looks after me when all other numbers fail. He gets #0 because He’s everywhere to me. He’s everyone to me. Everyone in this list reminds me of my love for God. My relationship with Him then and the growth it has taken in the years of crying and cutting is important to me because now, no one gives me peace of mind like He does.