The leaves are beginning to change here, and as I start to explore my new environment I find little things over and over that take my breath away. It doesn't take much to thrill me. I enjoy finding little winding roads that take me by interesting places, or finding out that this backstreet connects to that one and realizing that suddenly I know where I am. I've learned to enjoy the simplest things in life: the way autumn paints the trees with henna and saffron, the crest of mountains in the distance, the way my dog looks up at me after a long walk with so much adoration in his sweet face. I weave all these things together and blanket myself with their comfort.
The hardest part for me is that I keep thinking about the person I wanted to share all of this with. Every time I see something incredible my first instinct is still to tell him all about it, and I have to remind myself that the only reason I'm enjoying any of this is because he made it clear that he would never commit to me. Given the choice of loving me forever or losing me forever, he chose to lose me. No amount of beautiful landscape has made that knowledge easy.
I don't mind so much being alone. I enjoy my own company, and being alone has never really bothered me. It's the sudden absence that unsettles me, and I need time to get used to it again. When you've had someone in your life for four years who's been your lover and your best friend, it's hard to reprogram yourself so quickly. In so many ways, it feels as though someone has died. You can make comparisons to that without even trying very hard, because what has passed away is the person who used to love you. The person who looked at you in such a way, who fit to you like spoons in a drawer, who made you laugh, who held your hand... that person is gone. In it's place is someone else that you don't know, a stranger who wears your lover's face.
I know that time will take care of that, will smooth away that pattern in my life like waves on the sand, but it's amazing how slowly time moves when you're in pain. So I find distractions and try not to think about Smaug, as we'll call him in these pages. Why Smaug? Well, in The Hobbit, Smaug is a dragon who sits around hoarding his gold and smoking. It seems like a fitting moniker for the man who told me marrying me would lead to him losing all his "amassed personal wealth," and who instead opted to replace me with a girl who found the 420 lifestyle as awesome as he does.
Strangely, I'm not sorry for what has happened. I did the right thing breaking up with him after he told me that marrying me would ruin his life. I did the right thing taking this job and moving out here. I would do those things the same way, because I believe that we all get what we deserve. So I get to be coddled by my company and live for free for at least a year in a beautiful new place, and Smaug gets to revert to the life of a frat boy, getting stoned every day and letting his house fall apart around him. Somehow I think I'm making out better.