It felt as though my heart was being squeezed by a vise. Or maybe it felt as though it was been forced through a shredder. It was a pain I’ve felt before, a pain I think we’re all to familiar with, at least if you’re ever had the misfortune of falling in love and experiencing heartbreak. It is, as we all know, part of the human condition, and we don’t think much about it until we’re the ones in pain.
Margie was someone special. Beautiful in a understated way. She rarely wore makeup, almost never did her hair, except to put in in a messy bun. She didn’t wear sexy clothes or anything else that we typically expect from women these days. In spite of this, or maybe because of this, she exuded a natural beauty. She didn’t have to rely on cosmetics and fashion.
And Margie was popular, too popular if she offered her opinion. She was never comfortable with her popularity. But she was warm and friendly, gracious and outgoing, religious without being judgmental. She was a magnet for the broken and the lonely, and she did her best to be a friend to those in need.
This is where I come in. Unlike her, I was never popular. I’m something of an outsider, a weirdo. I have friends, but no one too close. I usually strike out with women. Oh, I get dates, but they usually cancel at the last minute. It got to the point where I never tried anymore.
Somehow, Margie and I clicked. Her an outgoing, popular woman, and I an introverted, awkward shell of a man. We hit it off, first as friends, and quickly as something more. She was the one who asked me out because I had become accustomed to rejection. I had expected her to call to cancel, but she didn’t. We went to dinner and caught a movie. The following week we went hiking, and then to the museum. Before I knew it, we had become inseparable.
And in a moment, I knew I would be leaving Margie forever.
The pain of that knowing is indescribable. A man like me never gets to be with a woman like Margie. Maybe one in a generation gets to experience this kind of bliss. Only one in a generation gets to be absolutely in love – pure, simple, innocent love. For a moment, I got to be that lucky bastard.
I hear her crying, but I can’t see her. It hurts me to know that she’s hurting. That I’m breaking her. I wish it didn’t have to be this way.
It was an amazing moment in my life, to be honest. For the first time, I knew what it was to be truly happy. I had someone to complete me. I had someone who pushed me to be a better version of myself. She taught me to believe in myself. And I did, believe that is. Within six months of us dating, I got a promotion at work. I finished writing a novel that I’d been dabbling with for ages, and actually got some encouraging feedback from agents.
Suddenly I was not the awkward weirdo at work. I’ll never have Margie’s popularity, but my workplace relationships blossomed. I became more relaxed, and things became easier. Margie made things easier for me. In turn, I gave her my undying devotion. I worshipped her.
At home, I cooked all our meals. She kept the place clean. I did the laundry, she mowed the grass. We complimented each other. She introduced me to new music, and I shared my love for the classics. She was everything I had hoped for.
And I’m leaving through the door now, knowing I’ll never come back. I hear her crying, pleading for me not to leave her. I cry weakly, the pain in my chest becoming an unbearable burden. I struggle to catch my breath.
I feel the warmth of the sun shining on my face as I’m wheeled out to the ambulance. I hear Margie crying, but all I see are the unfamiliar faces of the paramedics. I’m too young to have suffered a heart attack, but I lost my father when he was only forty-five. I just turned Forty-two.
I don’t dare to hope for another miracle. One miracle is too much to ask for, and it was answered when Margie came into my life. It’s suddenly getting dark and the pain is beginning to fade, and then the pain ends. I’m at peace. Poor Margie, but as I float away, I can hear her screaming for me. I hesitate. It’s time to go.
Then I hear some faint words. “Clear!” A shock, I convulse. Again, and again. I gasp as my eyes open. The pain returns. Maybe I should be bold enough to pray for a miracle.