Average Jane

Ghosts from My Past, The Man and The Flood

Do you know the story of the guy and the flood? I heard it first on the West Wing. It goes like this:

You know, you remind me of the man that lived by the river. He heard a radio report that the river was going to rush up and flood the town. And that all the residents should evacuate their homes. But the man said, “I’m religious. I pray. God loves me. God will save me.”The waters rose up. A guy in a row boat came along and he shouted, “Hey, hey you! You in there. The town is flooding. Let me take you to safety.” But the man shouted back, “I’m religious. I pray. God loves me. God will save me.”A helicopter was hovering overhead. And a guy with a megaphone shouted, “Hey you, you down there. The town is flooding. Let me drop this ladder and I’ll take you to safety.” But the man shouted back that he was religious, that he prayed, that God loved him and that God will take him to safety.Well… the man drowned. And standing at the gates of St. Peter, he demanded an audience with God. “Lord,” he said, “I’m a religious man, I pray. I thought you loved me. Why did this happen?” God said, “I sent you a radio report, a helicopter, and a guy in a rowboat. What the hell are you doing here?”

In the last 4 days, I’ve been visited by characters from my past. The characters have unearthed themselves at a time when I’ve been struggling through something in my life. It’s not an important thing, just heart ache. Someone who didn’t call. Someone who should have/would have called. Things were going so well, and I was flatly, silently rejected. I was torn up. To pieces.

But then I saw my first real boyfriend. In town for a wedding, he wanted to get together. He spent a few hours catching up, drinking coffee. It was comfortable and easy. He hasn’t changed. I have.

Then my grandmother came to me. Driving in the car, a song came on the radio and I heard the voice of my grandmother. “You’re beautiful. You’re so special. You’re my one and only.” I burst into tears. But she was right.

Then I ran into my next ex boyfriend in a coffee shop. “Ran into” is a bit of a strong statement, since it amounted to spotting him out of the corner of my eye, having a panic attack and running the other way. He was manipulative and controlling. He was mean and ungrateful. I knew he lived in the area, but not my part. He was with a girl who looked like me. I wasn’t about to deal with him. I took the high road right out of his life.

My Rabbi pocket called me. We haven’t talked in weeks. His voicemail was noise, but his familiar voice not heard often enough was a comfort.

And tonight I saw my last boyfriend in the car next to mine at a stop light. Something completely random, sure. Except not 2 days ago I emailed him for the first time in months saying how strange it was that I hadn’t seen him in the months I lived down the street. And that I had something to tell him. And since I wouldn’t run into him again since I’ve moved, I wanted to tell him right then. Two days later, we’re next to each other. In the dark. On the road. Where I wasn’t going to be. Where I had been a hundred times before.

God, or the universe, sent me all of my exes, my dead grandmother and my Rabbi. What the hell is going on? Am I supposed to say goodbye to my exes, feel what real love is from my grandmother, and start getting my spiritual house in order after being adrift for so long? Is closure from everyone else the closure I needed from the runaway suitor? What is the message?  Is there a message at all? I don’t want to stand at anyone’s gates or the gates of time and be asked why I was there when I could have read the signs. I’m trying so hard to figure it out. It has to add up to something.


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  1. * Meredith says:

    Every once in a while I see someone who has the receding chin and facial structure of my nightmare ex and it just takes my breath away. I’m not sure I believe in signs but I have to say it’s comforting to continue to feel that revulsion, to not forget why I ended that in the first place.

    Also holy BALLS I cannot believe I did not make it here sooner. When I get time I must go back and read archives. xox

    | Reply Posted 6 years, 6 months ago
  2. * terra says:

    Maybe the message is that you’ve been loved, are loved and will love again? Maybe it’s exactly what you’re grandmother said, that you’re beautiful and special and look, here are others who have agreed with me.

    | Reply Posted 6 years, 6 months ago

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