We were unhappy together, but our love was bigger than our misery.
We spent fifty years mocking the temptation to leave each other by saying “After this winter, we will separate, we will find new lovers, and after a while come back towards each other as good old friends, without bitterness nor remorse, we will built houses in the suburbs, with large garages and bright living-rooms, and we will invite each other on Sundays, for lunch, have mushroom soufflé and vegan ice-cream and rosé champagne, and towards the evening we will move with our spouses and children on the terrace, to admire the approaching sunset, while sipping organic dark coffee and talking about plans of building a solar swimming pool in the garden.”
When the summer came, one of us would say, “After this summer, I will go away from this flat, find another lover, who will smile back at me and offer me begonias for my birthday, I will spend my holidays hiking with him in Peru and taking shamanic healing classes in the jungle, at forty I will look young and energetic and I will have been living in the centre of Paris for some years already, and I will rarely think about you.”
And when the winter came, the other one would say: “After this winter, I will tell you that though I never loved someone as I love you, my life with you is unliveable, and that I have to go, and you will dry your tears and rest your head on another man’s shoulder, and I will wander from woman to woman, looking for the love I lost when I left you, deeply unsatisfied but intensely relieved.”
And when the summer came, we would say: “After this summer, we will lie to each other by pretending that we simply need our personal space so we will move in separate flats, and see less and less of each other, and start seeing other people, until one of the other women will be pregnant and we will have a serious conversation and decide to put an end to it all, though we would have the intuition that the memories of our love will trouble us and not leave us free.”
We lived for fifty years like this, fighting with the demon who wanted us apart, because our love was bigger than anything in this world.