The Paradox

I’ve been listening to beautiful music.

Some of it, my parents loved. Cat Stevens, James Taylor. When my parents first met back in the seventies, they decided that their song was “Time in a Bottle” by Jim Croce. When my mother was in the hospital being treated for cancer, my father smuggled in a tape deck so they could listen to it together.

I’ve looked around enough to know
That you’re the one I want to go through time with

But my father remarried after she died.

There are so many beautiful lyrics about love. The songs can get even prettier after the love is cut short.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is one of my favorite movies. Each Coming Night by Iron and Wine is one of my favorite songs. They both reassure me that love is an amazing thing even after it ends. That the pain is worth it; that the pain is a gift even in and of itself.

And I just can’t buy it. I made that sacrifice once. I just can’t believe that it could ever be worth the price again, that I could even afford it again.

Love requires you to pay more than you can afford. I don’t understand. Living without love is killing me, but loving someone would kill me too. It makes me angry sometimes, this paradox we’re forced into. I don’t understand. I don’t understand.

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