About a year ago I lost the lady I realized, too late, that I loved. I was an alcoholic who was also addicted to painkillers. Sally stayed with me through some rough times but I got mean and took it out on her verbally. One day, when I came home from work, she was gone.
I called her but she would not answer her phone. I went to see her but her mother said she had moved to another town. Finally, she answered one night. She told me that she had loved me, but that she could not spend her life being put down and belittled, for having a stroke while I was the one killing myself by mixing alcohol and drugs. She asked me not to call her cell phone again.
I ended up getting help when my brother heard what had happened. I got clean, got sober and luckily, my job was still there when I got out of rehab. One day I went downtown to the flea market and I thought I heard a beautiful and familiar voice. I looked over and sure enough, it was Sally. She was with another man.
As I walked up to them, she had a worried look in her eyes. Still, she introduced us and I could tell by the look in his eyes that he knew who I was. He was a gentleman, though, and did not say anything rude. I asked Sally how she was doing and she said fine. She asked how I was and I told her I was doing good and had been clean for about six months. A look of real happiness washed over her face at that. She hugged me and said she was glad.
Still, she was walking away with that guy and I was jealous. I asked how her health had been with her stroke and all. It was partly out of meanness. That was when I got the biggest lesson of my life. The guy she was with took her hand as she said she was doing good and had not had any problems. Then her boyfriend said “Even if she did, I would be here for her; she’s been the best thing to ever happen to me.”
I realized then that I had hurt Sally with my attitude while on drugs and alcohol but that she had helped me as much as she could till she could not take the abuse any more. I was clean and sober now, but I had still lost out on love where she was concerned. A girl who had a stroke due to stress had ended up richer and healthier and able to build a life full of energy and love and adventure. As she walked off with him, I whispered, “Good for you, Sally” and let her go peacefully and with my best wishes.