For years I have known about the Law of Attraction and am acutely aware that it works, if you work on it. As a child, I felt I never had to “wish” for anything, or if I did, it magically appeared. Call it youthful innocence, but I believed in the world, in myself and how easy it all seemed to be. As I grew older and more cynical, I found life was harder (as I think we all do), and as I struggled to find my identity in the post-grunge life of my mid-20s, I had no clue what to do, or what I wanted to be – other than what I am doing now, writing. But I have said that more than once.
I met a man, who I call the ass, and when we first started dating he assured me he had found a way we could make a ton of money while allowing me the valuable time I needed to write. I bought the bait hook, line and sinker. About a month into our business venture, I realized the grave mistake I had made. This man was short-tempered, mentally abusive and had serious anger issues. But the money was good, so I held on. Our business took us to Mexico quite a bit, and the town we went to was a good 24-hour trip from the desert city we lived in to the mountains of central Mexico. No trip was easy with him. I am a seasoned traveler but when faced with an ass who is screaming his head off at every little slight that has occurred, little can be done to change the narrative. We spent many of these trips in silence.
Mexico was an interesting place. I enjoyed the town we were in, the narrow streets, the art feel, the ex-pats who lived there. I loved the time we spent in Cozumel, where the color of the water entranced me. Most of the people we met embraced us with open arms. Warm, wonderful people. But I also learned a great deal about being female and the risks that come with it. Even though I have traveled the globe solo, I try to fit in wherever I go. I am aware of local customs and don’t try and stick out as an American. Luckily for me, I can pass for being from other locations – Europe, Australia, etc. But on one of our return trips, I had the most frightening experience of being a woman I have ever had. And to make it worse, I knew the ass could and would not do anything to stop what could have happened to me.
We were on one of the rare toll roads that wind through the mountains and back to the cities up north. This road was almost always empty, as most natives could not afford the cost of admittance. We were flying along in the damn new truck he had insisted we get, with a 20 foot trailer behind us, when a huge convoy of Federales pulled us over. I have been to numerous places where there are soldiers with automatic weapons on the streets. But they are usually for dissuasion of violence. I have never felt threatened by that. This case was the complete opposite – from out of the truck that pulled in front of us poured 20+ men, all dressed in black fatigues, with combat boots and all holding automatic weapons. They insisted we get out of the vehicle. We did as told, and while the ass opened the trailer for them to inspect what was inside, I stared out at the vast wasteland of desert in front of me, wondering if I would be gang raped and left to die on the side of a Mexican highway. No one would know. I felt an icy chill run down my spine.
After they appeared satisfied with the contents of our trailer, they let us back in the car (which allowed me to breath slightly). The commander came to the driver’s window and said to the ass that his troops were “thirsty”. How thirsty? We knew it was a bribe. A few hundred dollars later, their convoy left us in their dust and we continued on. I was shaking for hours.
I finally stopped going on the road trips to Mexico as the business was on fire, and I was needed to keep orders filled and sent out. I didn’t mind. It gave me the time and space I needed away from the ass. But it is also when my bipolar came knocking and the darkness began to descend. I know much of this was in part to the horrid stress I was under, dealing with him, the business, not having time to write, and realizing my life was headed in the wrong direction. I found myself idealizing how I would commit suicide every time he left on a trip. Until the one day I knew. I just knew. I had to get out.
I had tried six months prior, but he had threatened me. This time I didn’t give a damn. He could take what he wanted. I just wanted to be free from him. And if I were to give him any credit, it would be that he finally became so exasperated with my rapid-cycling that he eventually agreed with me. But he asked me to at least do the three trade shows we had lined up before I left for good.
I agreed, knowing how much we could make. We had one in Atlanta, one in L.A. and one in San Francisco. While we were in Atlanta, the first show, I vividly recall sitting in our booth, bored to tears from him, from everyone. I looked around and simply wondered to myself “Is there anyone in this world that I can have a decent conversation with? An intelligent one that sparks the soul? Someone I can connect with?” I didn’t know at the time that I was putting it out the universe, but I would find out in just a few days…
From Atlanta, we had to drive straight across the country, without stopping to make it to L.A. in time to set up for the show and be ready to open the next day. Los Angeles was always where we made the most money, so I was excited to be back in a place where the totals on the order sheets would be much better than Atlanta had. We found our space and began setting up. Now, let me paint a picture for you: We had driven 31 hours to reach our destination. I had not showered in two days. I don’t even think I had changed clothes. I was in my usual tank top and shorts, with my hair piled on top of my head and my fingers stained from unwrapping items that were in newspaper. I was a mess. I will admit, I take great pride in my appearance, so this was slightly embarrassing to me, especially when I began to notice the floor “models”. These were the young women hired by certain companies to lure shoppers into their booths by wearing attractive black dresses and being perfectly made-up. I wanted to sink into the floor.
We were almost done, I was almost free from trying to ignore the beautiful women around me, and have the shower I desperately needed, when HE appeared. He arrived at our booth with his best friend. They were selling goods from Thailand and knew the ass through an mutual acquaintance. So, they stopped to talk, to introduce themselves to me, to catch up on the friend they all knew. I wanted to sink even further into the floor, as both these men were tall (the ass was not), handsome and with full heads of beautiful hair. Now I usually don’t notice hair on men, but after 2 years of living with a man obsessed that he was going bald and using every product on the market to wage a war against it, I did appreciate what I saw in them. But all I could think was, why did this have to happen now, when I am a dirty mess and probably smell. When a thousand other beautiful woman are wandering around the Staples Center. Why now?”
The next day, after a needed night sleep, a long shower and a change of clothes, we hit the convention ready to fill orders. Halfway through the morning, HE walked up to my booth and asked if I ever got a break. I laughed at this. For the first time in two years a man was actually being considerate of me. I told him when the ass got back, I would take a break and he suggested we go somewhere and talk. I was scared to death, but I was also filled with excitement and that tingling feeling you get when you know something special is happening.
And talk we did. Not just that break, but ever hour on the hour for the next 3 days, he would come and get me and we would spend our time just having deep, intellectual conversations that were like food for my starving brain. He was an artist. He was a creative soul. He was gentle, and kind, and everything that the ass wasn’t. It broke my heart after the show closed and we had to say our goodbyes.
The San Francisco show sucked. Simply sucked. It was in August, which is when the city is freezing, at least according to the inappropriate clothing I had packed. We stayed with one of his friends, and had to share a bed, even though we had severed our relationship several weeks before. In fact, we were no longer even living together. I had moved back in with the friend I had relocated to the desert city with after college, and spent as little time as possible working for the business. I had already checked out. When the 3 days of torture in San Francisco were over, we headed back to the desert.
A few days later, the ass called me, saying that we had received a letter from HIM. I hadn’t told him yet I was single, and I made the ass give me all the information in the letter, because I knew if I did not seize this opportunity, I might miss out on something magical. Something that would or could change my life. And it did. But I didn’t know that yet.
So, I wrote to HIM (this was long before emails and cell phones) and told him the situation and that I was planning on leaving the desert city in the coming months, because too much had changed in the sleepy town I had moved to and too many of the people I had known were gone. I also had no idea what I was going to do, so staying there, in the same city as the ass, was not appealing to me. I wanted to write. To see if I could make it work and I wanted to find a quiet place to do that. A small key sounded good, perhaps the Outer Banks? I wanted to take the money I had slaved to make in the business and use it to see how far I could get along my quest.
A week later I got a letter. It had his phone number. He wanted to talk. He didn’t say it in as many words, but I knew that he was as pleased as I was that I was now single. I called and we spoke for 8 hours. Every night after that, the pattern repeated. I got so little sleep during that time, but I didn’t care. I was floating on air. We began sending each other letters via the mail, one of which held a story that he would write one page of, and then I would continue with the next. Our phone bills were insane. But none of it mattered. THIS was who I had been looking for – if not consciously when I put it out there in Atlanta, but it was HIM. And I knew it.
We did the six month long distant thing, and to make my travels across the country brief, I ended up moving to where he lived, because as he said, “why should we waste six months deciding if this is going to work? If you move in here, we will know in that time if it will or not.” A good rationalization, I thought. I took it. I will never regret that decision. Nor will I regret the 9 years and 9 months we spent together. This man became my husband. It wasn’t something either of us expected, but I will never regret the vows I spoke to him on that day under the pine trees. I will never regret one single moment we shared together in the decade we had one another.
I will always regret his death.
But, in that one moment, in the vast convention center in Atlanta, where I was at my wits end, and hated my life, I reached out. Not to god, but to the universe. I wanted something. Hell, I needed something in my life to give it meaning. To give me meaning, because the two years with the ass had battered my self-confidence into the ground. I asked, and just as when I was a child, it appeared.
After he died, I turned my back on this magic. On the Law of Attraction and what it really can do. I was too lost and had no idea what I wanted, except what I had lost and I knew there was no way to get it back. I had lost him. I had lost the life and the man I loved.
So now, after countless years of running from the past, I am facing it. I am facing the good and the bad. The angels and the demons. And I am learning. I am starting to believe again – in my own self-worth, my talent, and in the magic of the Law of Attraction. I focus on it daily. I meditate in the morning. I visualize what I want. And I believe again that it will work – for me, for you, for anyone who can practice and believe in it enough. It does not take that much. Focus. Ask. If it is the right thing to receive, it will appear. It did for me. I want to see what it holds in store for me next…
© Sorrow & Kindness