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Mel's Story, Part I
Quietly, he spoke.
"Well then I can't see you any more."
I searched his face quizzically, trying to figure out where exactly this was coming from. Definitely not his backbone, that's for sure.
"Then open your eyes, Craig! This - this isn't something you can just run away from! I can't run, and you're tied to me. Life isn't a three-legged race, Craig. We have to take this slow, together, okay? Step by step. Together."
"I can't, Mel. I just...I just can't."
I pressed a hand against my stomach. Apparently it was as sick of his bull as I was.
"I didn't do this to myself! WE did this! We made this...this..."
I couldn't believe the word he'd chosen to finish my sentence.
"To be honest I was going to say 'baby', but apparently I was way off base. It's too late for the alternative, Craig. WE HAVE NO OPTIONS. We're just going to have to roll with the Goddam punches."
The look he gave me said everything. He was always the kind of person who would just get frustrated when he couldn't move his emotions from his heart to his mouth, which is where I came into play. I felt incredibly calm, which so surprised me; I was picturing a complete meltdown.
"I know that you don't love me; not anymore, at least. To be honest, Craig, I'm not in love with you either. Your fingernails are way too long, and you only wash your hair like twice a week. Not exactly attractive."
I sighed a defeated sigh. Maybe this kid is going to be a superhero, because I have no idea where my strength is coming from.
"I don't have the money, or the time, and neither do you. But combined, maybe...maybe we can be our own little dysfunctional family."
He was pacing back and forth, slowly and deliberately. I stepped in front of him, staring him in the face.
"Craig, maybe we can do this."
Pressing both of his hands to his forehead, Craig slowly shook his head.
"Well. I'm not gonna lie, that's disappointing."
Together we just stood there for a second, kicking at the ground and staring off into the distance past the lake's shore. Words just kept coming out of my mouth, even though I knew I should probably keep to silence.
"You know, in third world countries like Cambodia or Somalia or whatever they used to have these things called "menstrual huts". When women were on their periods they would be exiled to just sit in these huts, because men in like the 1400's thought that the shedding of uteral lining was witchcraft voodoo or Santeria or something. Except they didn't actually CALL them "menstrual huts" at the time seeing as how they thought it was some form of really icky, evil magic."
Probbbbably not the best conversational topic.
Taking an embarrassed second to clear my throat, I decided to wrap things up.
"Wellllpp, you've got about what?, five or six months to find your balls? So, if those two little bundles of fertile joy show up and you decide to do something halfway valiant by being a father to your own child, why don't you shoot me a text or facebook me or something. I'm probably not going to want to talk to you or see you, so impersonal communication is most likely the best route to take. But hey, what do you know about the best route, right? Have a good life, a**hole."
I had a feeling that things would turn out this way.
Take a little advice from me and listen to your gut.
Mine used to be full of good judgment, but now it's probably got something in it that looks like a newborn panda surrounded by placenta goo.