Between left and right


If I want to be romantic, I can say that I was waiting for Drew all that time. In the desert, in those years when I was the boss’s girl, in the early days of dating Jake, even in my marriage. I was marking time, hovering, waiting for the measured and methodical turning of pages to reveal a path to him. I can say that my life had been lived in parallel with his, and that individually, we had been making our way toward each other our whole lives, in different cities, in different situations, each feeling lost and empty in our different worlds, not recognizing the rootlessness for what it was—a soul-level pining for one another, a Juliet and Romeo longing for a pre-destined merge.

I can say these things, but that doesn’t make them true. Believing in a soul mate is like believing in a ghost. Or an angel. That I long for the puzzle pieces to yet be fitted together, bringing the rest of our lives into focus, may only be proof that I want to believe. That my right brain is doing the thinking.

The left brain easily dismisses this romantic faith in fate. Like a crow chasing an eagle off into the distance, logic dispels magic, pointing out inconsistencies, nipping at ideas until they fit back into the mainstream. A sane person is forced to acknowledge fact. Drew is not here. Our lives have not merged; instead, we continue to live in parallel. Drew cannot make a move until I do, and I cannot risk a move without him. More and more, it seems unlikely we will unite, unless tragedy or old age intervene.

Logic also argues that if a move can’t be made on principle alone, then this quandary is less about an unfulfilled romance with Drew than it is an issue of faith in myself. To give it this spin, to turn myself into a fairytale character waiting for a white horse ending, is ridiculous. And when viewed in this harsh light, the evidence makes faith seem ill-advised, no matter how much my cliche-ridden heart wants the legend to play out.

The truth is that connecting with Drew at key moments of my life has always provided perspective. Of that, I am clear. But there is little else to go on. There are other truths, people who are actually here in my life, tangible, real connections that outperform words yet unspoken. And there is no room for an indecisive, non-present, unlikely him. Perhaps my fate is already decided, no more guesses, no more crossroads to contemplate.

Giving in to the left is like ceding art to technology, or religion to science. But lacking the courage to test intuition, I can only line up the facts and wait for my feelings to align. More than anything, I want to feel peace, a profound appreciation for Jake, and a certainty that I am enough, that this is where and whom I am supposed to be. I can only wait for the image of Drew to fade away, along with the idea that there is something missing, something more authentic. Denying the unproven, and hoping for balance.

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