Blog 1094 – 08.25.2018
A Tribute To Women, One Woman In Particular
Since I can remember I have always had one special woman in my life. My dear departed mother, Alene Florence Davidson White was for at least the first fourteen years of my life the undisputed Queen Of Hearts in my life. But then came puberty, with all its mysterious mangle of erotic, and romantic thoughts and for a while the throne was overthrown again and again like an ice cream store with the flavor of the month, week, or even day as there were so many pretties to pick from. And, yes, those relationships were and still are mostly in my mind and imagination but there were also a few real relationships with real live women along the way too. And my mother had a hard time accepting that she no longer reigned supreme on the throne of her son’s heart but I never stopped loving her not even when she died by her own hand eighteen years ago.
I have married four times and the longest of the first three marriages lasted only seven years. Though my last wife, Linda Lee Stokes, and I have been separated for ten years we are still married. There is no other woman that I have had a closer or more enduring relationship with nor want to. She is at least in one way very like my mother, probably why I picked her to love, Linda has a problem with other contenders for my time and attention. Many believe it is impossible for men and women to be just friends. That is to me a silly notion, but people will think what they think. And I am sure that many friendships between opposite sexes and even the same sex often have one person wishing the relationship were more close or that the one cares perhaps more deeply than they think the other does.
I have come to the place in my life where I think as the ole song says that, “Even a bad love (lesser love) is better than no love at all.” And that I am beyond making excuses for the actions of others or even myself but just want to love and be loved. It is with that thought I write this piece to say I am sorry to Linda for two things. One for judging her, never my place, way above my pay grade, as accepting people for who they are and where the are is the only way to show them how much we love them. And secondly for trying so hard, and mostly in vain I might add, to please her. That, too, is never our place and way above our pay grade. We must each find happiness for ourselves. We can share our happiness with happy people but it is as impossible to make someone else happy if they are not with themselves, as it is to try to force the sun to rise or set.
My mama was a mostly unhappy person and like too many children I grew up thinking it was my job to make her happy. People like to blame their unhappiness on others rather that face up to their own responsibility for their own happiness. If you need me to say it more plainly. The way to happiness is simple really – “Forget your troubles, come on get happy”, take the responsibility of accepting and loving yourself right now exactly as you are, oh and then you will find it easy and even fun to love others who and where they are as well.
All of my life I have tried to be a “people pleaser” but no more. As another wise song, Rick Nelson’s “Garden Party” says: “You can’t please everyone (and no one can) so you’ve got to please yourself.” I have loved Linda Lee Stokes longer, deeper, and harder than any woman in my life and given her far and away the most and the best of me and yet it has never been enough, nor can it be, for all our real problems stem from not loving ourselves enough.
Do you hear me, my Sweet Mama? You started me on this Don Quixote impossible mission but I have taken off the armor, put down my lance, my sword, and shield, no more tilting at windmills. The quest for true love is ended. I have found the love I sought as we all must eventually in own hearts. Then and only then can we ever be happy and capable of sharing that love and happiness with other loved and loving happy hearts.
I love each of you reading this, especially the lovely Linda, but then even the life long poet and romantic that I am, I have finally, I think, realized what matters most is that you love yourself first and foremost and be happy. It is not my or anyone else’s job to do that for you, but just to love you the best we can, nor can anything we do or ever say make up to you any love that you deny yourself.
Your friend and fellow traveler,