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The Truth About the Fact: An International Journal of Literary Nonfiction

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The Truth About the Fact: A Journal of Literary Nonfiction is an international journal committed to the idea that excellence in the art of letters can play a vital role in transforming the planet we share.

Monday, April 2, 2012

The Bed Abyss

“The last person I fell in love with was an Aquarius.” In an instant after I express this simple bit of information, in the middle of a campus, I felt it all flood back. I imagined his long lanky body lying back on his lumpy bed in Madrid. The room was tiny, like the quarters of a ship, and the bed took up most of it. He would squeeze my curves. I told him I had enough carne on my bones for the both of us. A week with his family in their casita in Mallorca assured my love. After Madrid, before Mallorca, I had considered not seeing him again. My friend, the one who witnessed our entire encounter and growth, told me what I already knew: I had to come full circle. I couldn’t believe I was following love. Neither of us was romantic per se. I, being passionate and hot-blooded, was the spice to the relationship, while his cool, calmness was pragmatic and almost distant. The last night in Mallorca in bed he finally said the most romantic words he had ever expressed, “Why are you leaving? Just stay. Why don’t you just stay?” My entire chest, with my heart in it, began to fall through my back, which rested on the bed.

“I don’t know how you do it,” my friend tells me as we sit in my bed, in my room, in Los Angeles almost a year later. “I would fall apart.” I had no answer for her. I knew I loved him and I said it as if to claim my stance on a casual proposition. Before I went to Spain, even at the beginning of my months there, I had declared that I didn’t want a family. “I don’t need kids or a soul mate,” I would say. What I meant was I didn’t need forever. What I really meant was I was afraid of forever. Life in the casita, meeting cousins, aunts, uncles, and even my love’s grandfather in his hospital bed left me corrected and exposed. His grandfather had said I was too much woman for my meatless man. I kissed his wrinkled cheek, “Gracias, abuelo,” I laughed. I think even he knew the love I felt. Months later he passed away. Heat filled my face with despair. The happiness I felt that I had gotten to meet him almost surpassed it.

After my stay in Mallorca, when Enrique took me to the airport, he waited with me in line. Casually we laughed and made inside jokes. He teased me, as always, saying that we would never see each other again. I brushed his chest looking away. “Maya!” He would laugh and grab my shoulder. “That’s not funny.” I told him, fiery and sensitive. He smiled. I didn’t cry when I left him. Nos vemos.” We said. “We will see each other again.” To an outsider we looked like any other couple separating for a few days. To us, to our story, it was uncertain.

“I’m a Pisces, he was an Aquarius like you.” I laugh and continue, walking through the University parking lot with a classmate. It was silent for a beat, odd due to the usual flow and banter of our conversation. “The last girl I loved was a Pisces.” I blushed a bit and kept walking. Numbers exchanged, anxiety induced, and once again I am blissfully buried in another bed. This love is different, but there are elements that are the same. This love is here, but not for long as the end of the semester approaches. The question of whether to follow it or not rises and falls like my heart as I lay in the bed and say, “I love you.” This may be the forever I promised myself. I can let it take me: my bed, to our bed, to a hospital bed; or will I run away with the uncertain promise that we will see each other again. Miles apart, how do you know when to chase your forever?


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