Thirty-five years ago I was an average teenage girl living an average and boring life, until the day I met my first love. He had eyes that sparkled, a smile that would melt any girls heart, and he was unlike anyone I had ever met in the suburbs. He was born and raised in the city of Toronto and was always looking for that next adventure. I was more than ready for an adventure in my life and never really stood a chance against his charms.
My life became a whirlwind of excitement and activity, and I realized that I was meant to live life passionately, not sitting on the sidelines watching life go by. This special person had awakened me to all that life could be; when I was with him nothing was impossible. It was like living in the desert and then being given more water than I could ever drink. But I drank deeply from him and his family and discovered a new life, a life filled with love, kindness, passion, and excitement.
A young teenage girl doesn’t always make the right choices though and before too long we were expecting our first child. I worried that the prospect of an unplanned baby would push away this young man who thrived on living fast, but he saw becoming a father as another great adventure, one that we would share together.
As the pregnancy progressed though I felt a little left behind. His spark for life was still blazing hot but I was tired and wanted to nest. One weekend as I entered my seventh month of the pregnancy we had a horrible fight; he wanted to go to a friends cabin for the weekend and I wanted him to stay home with me. I called him every name in the book and told him he could go to hell because I never wanted to see him again. He just smiled, gave me a kiss on the forehead and said “I’ll see you on Sunday”, as he grabbed his bag and headed for the door. I never saw him again; he died that weekend in an accident.
I honestly don’t have the words to describe the guilt and shame I carried with me for way too many years after his death. My passion for living died the same day he did. I had behaved in such a hurtful way the last time I saw him, and I never got the chance to make amends. But I did learn a very valuable lesson; I now knew how important it was to to express your true feelings. What I should have told him before he left that weekend was that I was so very scared. I was afraid that I was losing him, I was afraid of how our lives would change with a new baby, and I was terrified that I wouldn’t be a good mother. I also should have told him that he was a remarkable and beautiful person and that I loved him and treasured our time together.
My life is very different now at age fifty, I’ve grown and matured, and learned even more about loss and heartbreak. Today I know that you should never walk away from a loved one without making sure that they understand how special they are to you.
Writing a letter to someone you love is a great way to express your true feelings for them but in the end it comes down to these 11 simple words: Please forgive me, I forgive you, Thank you, and I love you.
I never thought that my hurtful words would be last I spoke to my lover and father of my first child, but they were. Don’t let the same thing happen to you. Share what is in your heart with your loved ones. Do it today, because we never know if there will be a tomorrow.