To be loved, and to give love
Why is it that we always want the man that never sees us, instead of the ones that do? Are we trying to prove to ourselves that we are worth the fight? The battles inside our minds hold us back, from whom or what is are true potential. I’ve noticed that when I am myself, with no one else I really drive myself to be who I want to be, other than when I am in a relationship. I feel like when I am in any kind of a relationship, I strive to make that other person happy, and what fails? My own true happiness, I lose myself in trying to exist. That isn’t how a life, love, or marriage is supposed to have be/been.
So what is stopping me from being me, while in a relationship? I believe that I am so lost in trying to be successful in making everyone else happy. I lose who I am and myself worth. I believe as soon as that “honeymoon” stage is over and we are comfortable with each other, I tend to forget what made me fall in love with that person. Let’s admit it, we have fallen in love many times in our lives and we have ended loved. I really don’t think you can “fall” out of love with anyone. Just think about it. You get so emotionally, physically, sexually involved that is why you give that comfort of love. You allowed yourself to let that other person in.
Here is my story of love: I met a handsome, tall, young man. We were both young. When I first saw him I was not dressed to be presented to anyone. It was a hot late April afternoon in Tennessee. It was a Saturday and I really didn’t know anyone yet, so I would take my music, go to the tennis courts (that belonged to my company (military)) and I would dance, I would dance until I had no strength to continue. At this point in my life it was where I found satisfaction. So there I was cooling off in my leotard and shorts on the back steps of our barracks.
If anyone knows who I am they would know that I love volleyball, I cannot sit still when I see a game being played. So across the way the 101st MP’s were playing a game. Because I was in a different company I just sat from a distance. At the point I was getting ready to head in and take a shower. This man, yes the one I spoke about earlier, spike the ball in my direction. So I picked the ball back and served it over hand in his direction by passing the head of players across the net and down at his feet. He stood there in amazement all 6.5 feet of him. He smiled and begged for me to play and to be on his team. At this point I think he was flirting with me but, I am not sure because I have never dated anyone.
I shied away and said no, I appreciated the offer however I didn’t want to interrupt a company party. I was asked again. This time he walked over and asked me with a huge smile on his face. I agreed, we played until dark and I remember being lost in the moment I really didn’t care how dirty I was, how sweaty I was. I just enjoyed who I was, and this moment that made me happy. As the crowd started to dwindle down and the sun was gone and temperatures dropped I headed for home. That’s when I started gathering my things, and thanking people and walking towards my barracks. Then I hear this, "hey wait"! I turned around and there he was Mr. Hottie, He asked me what I was doing later that night I smiled and said, "nothing". He offered to go to dinner than to a party back at his barracks. My girly response was, “can I shower first?” he said of course, I rushed up my stairs.
I tried to hurry as fast as I could to shower and change. When I was finished I walked out the door and there he was sitting in the dark waiting for me. I smile at him and asked him if he had been waiting long. He stood up and smiled and said, “No, I just got here.” We went for a walk and we talked he asked questions and I asked questions. I felt so comfortable talking to him. I learned that we were both from the western states, and that we were new to Fort Campbell. After dinner we walked back and goofed off. When we finally returned to the barracks the party was just getting started. There were people drinking and I was only 20 and not at the age. I got made fun of at the moment; however I was able to just smile and accept things as they were. As the night tired out and people left I decided to call it a night. I started walking towards the door, heading to my barracks, long and behold there he was holding the door open for me. As we walked down the stairs and across the midway, stopping at my barrack doors, he smiled at me and said that he had a great night. Apparently he has not had a “good” night since he had gotten to FT. Campbell. I thanked him for a great night. Then I asked him his name. Yes after all of that we had never introduced ourselves to each other. I reached out my hand and said, Hi, my name is Joy, what’s yours? We both laughed and he told me it was Doug.
After that night, Doug and I hung out a lot, we went on walks together. In the morning after morning Physical Training, we would meet in the dining facility and have breakfast together. We would talk like we have known each other for years. It felt awesome. After six months of this I felt like we were best friends. He tried to kiss me and I pulled away. I began to have fear at that moment. It was almost a year since the rape and I was not sure if I felt comfortable with someone physically close to me. After a long discussion I told Doug about that horrific night, I told him about my fears, and here was his response. “It is okay to be loved, it is okay to give love!” with tears in my eyes I hugged him. He hugged me and that night I never left his arms. I felt so safe.
Shortly after that we were a couple, we laughed, and I cried, we goofed off. We had lives of soldiers in between. He went on a thirty day deployment and he was put in the advanced party. So while he was gone I stayed home and I realized just how much he had impacted my life. How much happiness was filled with his presence; I realized that I was incredibly happy with him around. However I did miss him I knew that things were going to be okay because he was going to return. One day as I was getting ready to go do laundry, I opened my door and there in the hallway was a single red rose in a vase, sitting on card with my name on it. I looked around and I thought that was weird. I picked up the items and went into my room and sat on my bed and read the card. It was from Doug!
Confused I walked out to the hallway and he was nowhere to be found. I walked back in my room grabbed my clothing and headed up stairs to do my laundry, I was smiling from the inside out. I never meant this much to anyone before. After I made it the laundry room I was sitting waiting for my close to finish, bored, hot and tired. I watched the door open and there stood Doug. I think I let out a scream of excitement as I ran to him. We hugged and kissed. (yes I kissed him), He smiled and then he got down on one knee and he pulled out a paperclip from his BDU pocket as he was talking to me he unfolded the paperclip, and when he was finished he grabbed my left hand and he began to wrap it around my ring finger. While he spoke he continued to manipulate the paperclip, when he was finished there was a rose sitting on my finger. I jokingly said to him wow you are talented did you learn that in the field? He laughed and then he grabbed my hand and said that past 30 days he had thought of nothing but the two of us. He said the ring was cheap, but he said when we have money I will but you a better one.
He asked me to marry him. My heart melted. So at that moment in time when life froze (including my heart) I learned what it was like to be loved, and apparently during the time Doug and I spent together I learned to give love, and every moment he was a part of my life I felt like I was on top of the world. Sadly after two short years of bliss the army happened, his life was turned upside down. We had not had our wedding; we were in the process of finding out where he was going to be and where I would be. He received orders to Korea. I was waiting to find out where I was going. He feared that this would tear us apart so he called everything off. My heart broke, and he was gone.
Later through rumors I heard just three weeks later he had married some other female, just shy of finding out I was carrying his son. I prayed for his happiness as I requested a unit change.
Before he left to Korea, I was 7 months pregnant. He saw me driving and pulled me over. When he approached my car, I looked up at him and he asked me what I was doing I told him I was heading home. Just then pre-mature contractions; this gave him an excuse to keep me there. He called the medics, and while I was in the back of the ambulance I heard him outside fighting to go with me to the hospital. Later that night after the hospital had stopped the contractions and as I was heading for home. One of the nurses stopped me as I was walking towards the door and told me that an MP was really worried about me and kept calling and checking in on me. I smiled and thanked her, then walked out the door.
We do tend to still love others that we deeply give our hearts to. If at any time we say we don’t we are just lying to ourselves. So I am learning to be honest with my feelings. To be loved and to give love, that is what I am focusing on with right now. Not just with someone I am intimate with but, my family and friends.
Even though we have moved on our own paths of life. My heart will always carry the love I have had for Doug. I really grew in those to three amazing, powerful years. I grabbed a piece of my "joy" and tucked it away in my heart. I see it daily when I see my son, our son who looks so much like his father, however carries parts of his mother. With that I will always know I can and will love.