The Card Of Fools


He says I am fragile.

I am his mirror.  If I am fragile, however fragile I have become is however fragile he has been, and still is. 

I say that he is so fragile.

How fragile his recovery is.  I know, because I saw images he had been looking at.  They were soft porn.  They were outside recovery.  Twice, now, at least twice, and that is only what he was careless enough to leave behind.  I can only guess how much more because he is usually so careful about cleaning up behind himself so no one can know, even himself, how ugly his treatment of women, how ugly his thoughts, how ugly his lust.

This Us is so terribly fragile.

Every rough wind threatens to shake it apart.  There is so little to hold on to.  The closer I get to him, the more every little thing can hurt.  The more I put into this Us, the more I fear that when it falls apart I will be even more hurt.  That I will feel even more stupid, fooled, tricked.  The Fool.  If only I were able to be so trusting, so open, so untouched, but I am terribly touched, touched to the depths of my soul with this pain and this horror and I don’t know how to feel clean again.

I may have to go insane.

I am a shattered chalice.  Perhaps this will allow me to regain my magic.  Perhaps I can weave this emptiness of spirit into a new container, into a new version of innocent Fool.

I think I am going to create myself a fantasy so that I can survive this, and open up again.  A crazy mental gymnastic to rewrite my past and not live in total terror of the future.

My beautiful husband went away, and died six years ago. 

I met someone soon after, named Mike.  Mike was very cruel, and took advantage of my loneliness and my ignorance at what had happened to my beautiful husband.  Mike lied and cheated and treated me with the utmost disrespect and put pornography and strippers and prostitutes above me in his heart and his body.  Mike broke my spirit which was already weakened when my husband died.  Mike took every fear I had ever shared with my beautiful husband, and twisted it to hurt me.  To break me down.  Mike was afraid, terrified, of any strong, independent woman. 

Mike is gone, now. 

I met a new man, a couple of weeks ago.  He is aware of my baggage, but he isn’t sure how to deal with it.  He wants to.  I am not sure why.  I hope he isn’t like Mike and just wants to break down a woman.  I hope he actually wants to respect the woman he accepts into his life.  I am not sure why he would respect a woman who is so broken, who can’t seem to find self respect for herself among her baggage, but I might find more self respect if I come to understand that I have left Mike and will never let him back into my life.  Never.  If I see him again, I will have to flee for my life. 

This new man is kind, and patient, and listens.  He seems to want me.  He seems to understand that any, ANY pornography or other women in any way will destroy what I might be able to offer.  I want to try, really try, to make a relationship with this new man, who walks with me at lunch, and talks about work and emotions and pain and healing.  I really like this new man and want to give this a full out, Fool’s try.  I have a lot to learn about how to put myself back together.  That there are a lot of things I used to think I wanted in life, in a relationship, that I will no longer be able to do.  Like going to Halloween balls.  I really, really wanted to go to a Halloween ball and dress sexy.  No more.  It hurts just to think about, all the other women, all their bodies attacking. Like having the man I love do anything with Belly Dancing.  Just the thought of another woman dancing in front of any man feels like iron stabbing in my veins.  Like avoiding drum circles at events if there will be dancers.  Like movies I use to like, probably having to just watch kids movies for years, maybe forever.  Like having fun and exciting sex.  No more hot sex for me.  Like anything where women are dressing sexy, websites for motorcycles, motorcycle and carshops, even old fashioned pinup girls, it hurts it hurts it hurts.  Like riding a horse without triggering that I feel anything sexual when I open my legs.   Like going to a circus, or watching gymnastics or swimming during the Olympics, or showing him clothing catalogs, or ever wearing lingerie, or anything anything anything.

Oh gods.  Oh gods.

I feel like I can’t let ‘my man’ be a man anymore.  I use to want ‘my man’ to get to be a man.  But I don’t get to feel like a woman, now, either.  Because I was made to feel like a useless, hated, worthless, replaceable, abandoned piece of trash, worth less than a whore, less than a lap dance, less than an orgasm to stupid porn.  Cheated and cheated and cheated on in his mind and his heart and his body and his soul.  A thousand thousand times.  Years and years.  Abused and beaten.  Had to be put in my place because he couldn’t handle a real woman, an unbroken woman.

I am broken, now.

I hope this new man doesn’t want me just because I am broken.  That would be horrible, because that means he would have no respect for me, either.  That would mean he would be willing to treat me just the same, when I got comfortable and wasn’t looking.  That he would lie because he didn’t think I deserved honesty.

So much baggage.  So many other people’s pain to carry.  All their damage, all he collected as he soaked in filthy sex and consumed their pain to feed his lust.  Years.  Years.  I carry years of filth and pain and corruption and wounding.  I didn’t dump this massive weight of baggage on to myself alone.  I don’t think I can lift the weight by myself anymore.

Maybe this new man can help us find a way to release all these people’s pain.  To transform it into something compassionate.  To free me from this prison.  Supposedly I have the key, but I don’t think I can turn it by myself.  It is too heavy.  The bars are too big for me to move.  I will never be the same, having been tortured in this prison.  No one comes out the same.  I will always be haunted by ghosts and attacked by memories. 

Maybe this new man can help me when that happens.

I hope this new man never, ever hurts me.

Only a Fool will walk this path.

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