The First Pain. 

I lived and breathed for him.


Matt was the first man to ever take control of me.  I have never put our story to paper.

We met on Myspace.  He took me out an actual date to some dive bar in Topeka, Kansas.  He was stationed on Fort Riley–just like my first husband, just like my second husband who was my boyfriend at the time.

He wore black glasses, a black and gray striped sweater, tight-rolled jeans and Chuck Taylors.  I didn’t know it then, but he had beautifully colored full sleeve tattoos on both arms.  He wasn’t tall, but he was still a little taller than I was, so that was sufficient.  The attraction was immediate.

I am all over the place in telling this.  Such is the way of a memory that rushes back the way this has. 

We had vanilla sex that night in the barracks.  He was in the new ones so at least he had a private room.  He took me back to my basement apartment in Junction City and we spent every single day together after that.

The next night, he took me to a show with some local bands.  I wore a black and white polka-dot dress, fishnet stockings and a red bandanna tied in my hair.  We went back to my place.  Passionate kissing led us to my couch.  I straddled him and he put a hand on each of my thighs.

I placed my hands on top of his and whispered, “Rip them” and he did.

I could carry on in an erotic fashion as is my way typically, but this is not about sex.  

That was a turning point for both of us. From there we had the most passionate, visceral, meaningful affair I have ever had in my life.  If I have ever loved, it was him.  He backhanded me beautifully when I was on top of him.  His teeth sank into my skin with the same depth and aggression with which he entered my body.

His hands found my throat when he climaxed and I would pass out around him.  I was 19 then, or maybe 20.

I lived and breathed for him.  There were no rules.  He knew I was with others, he didn’t care.  I would text Matt after my then boyfriend left and Matt would come over.  He would stay with me all night and leave for duty in the morning–his arms and body just as bruised and bloodied as my own.  He got a beautiful tattoo for me on his arm to finish his sleeve.  It was a heart with a ribbon that said “pain”.  It was perfectly us.

It was 30 days.  It lasted 30 days and I had to make a choice.

I was in Utah, halfway home to California when I turned on my phone and finally answered his call.  It had been two days since I last spoke with him.  He was devastated.

I felt nothing.

He eventually forgave me.  He knew my truths, though.  He became my best friend.  He knew everything.  I spared no details and he spared none for me.  We would exchange stories of our lovers and lament that we could not be together.

8 years later, we were briefly together again.  That story is for another day, though.  It was the most beautiful day of my life. More so than either of my weddings.  It is the perfect memory for me.

It will be the last memory of us together physically that I will have.

Today, I told him about someone I had recently met online and I guess he finally broke.  He sent me the following text message:

I am no longer yours. And that’s ok. I have to accept that. I am no longer the man I use to be and you have to accept that. I’m a fat lazy piece of shit now. I’m tame and boring. I don’t have the strength or sex drive that you need. I don’t have the freedom, the vocabulary, or the attire which you desire. Though you have already done so, I need to say it. You are free from me. You’re reach to rest of the world goes way past mine. I accept this. There is nothing I can do about this. I just sat here with my head back, eyes closed and that’s what came through my mind. Maybe, just maybe, in a different alternate universe you never left Kansas. And what you just described would have been us. But it is no longer us anymore. I’m sure you have searched for my equivalent, my 21 year old self equivalent. You have met my equivalent and some.

I should feel something.  I told him I did, but he can’t have the truth anymore.  I feel nothing.  Someone who meant so much to me and I feel nothing.

Goodbye, Matt.

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