Bittersweet...

Yesterday I spent time with an old friend. The wonderful gentleman that coaxed me into the world of artistic nude modeling when I was just fresh and 18. We finally reconnected after years apart for one reason or another. Since I am getting more and more into the world of being a photographer rather then being a model- he's helping me in numerous ways in networking with other local photographers and has even told me that if he gets a model with ink (something he's not keen on) that he will send her my way for a model to use.He's into long, tall, no tattoos girls where as I will shoot anything- more so if the girl has ink. I love ink. I have a little bit myself, but I love the art other's have on their bodies. So yes, I think I prefer girls with tattoos. Anyways- I digress.

We chatted for a few hours, him giving me sound photography advice and a few things for me to better clean my cameras, better viewing of the LCD screen on my camera (a little shield on a string that block ambient light outside to better see my camera's display) and even a 1 GB memory card for the borrowed monster camera that I've been using. Near the end of our visit, he vanished to the closet just off the dressing room of his new studio and walked out with an overflowing monster 4" binder filled with photos of me from the "old" film days when we shot together. He only shoots digital now and has since started returning photo books to girls since to quote him- "My wife will just throw them out when I'm gone anyways..."

While there are more photos in another book somewhere, this was the only one out in the open that was easily accessible. When he finds the other one, he will let me know. Well, I started thumbing through the book- staring directly into a face that I see everyday in the mirror, but me then was sweeter, more innocent. As the pages passed through my fingertips, I found other photos.

This particular collection of photos I remember well, as they burned deliciously beautiful with their chemical flames along side my wedding dress from my previous marriage as I celebrated moving into my new home and the finalization of my divorce in the spring of 2005 with a bonfire. These particular photos were the engagement photos my Ex and I had taken to publish in local newspapers at our parents request after we had already eloped a year prior. While there were the cute couple shots, there were/are more risque photos of he and I together.

Seeing those pictures, again later, after so much time had passed left me aching inside. They have left me with a feeling of eerieness I can only describe as that feeling you get after having a nightmare- that feeling that lingers with you all day long and that you cannot shake for anything. Seeing those photos of a more slender, topless me draped across the lap of my Ex husband, his hand cupping my breast- it almost nauseated me. I know at one point I loved him more then anything- but now, it just hurts. It sickens me that it hurts. Sure- I look great in the old photos, but that guy with me- that guy that hurt me in ways only a woman knows, that guy that I once thought was sexy... He disgusts me. Seeing his face nestled against one of my bare breasts feels gross. I couldn't scrub hard enough in the shower this morning just thinking about those photos.

Are these repressed feelings coming out? The guy that gave me these photos had no idea I'd long ago divorced him. Hell- he didn't know I had gotten re-married to the most wonderful man in the world. And I saw the guilt on his face as I looked at these photos in front of him- seeing that he knew this was digging up old wounds that he hadn't intended on opening. He did lend me some comfort by saying- "Well, you're better off without him. I never liked him anyways..." I smiled in agreement- "No one did. Not even my parents. They just tolerated him since they knew I loved him then..."

It still amazes me how such a powerful love between two people can turn into such a powerful and painful hatred. A hatred that has since fizzled out to a dull dislike as I have grown up and moved on with my life- but still- the reminders of what once was is enough to make me puke right now. I might keep some of these photos- after all- I do look damn sexy. But I think the majority of them will find their way to another flaming pile of wood in the fire pit this summer... Perhaps on the date on which I met him in 1998. If you happen to see a cloud of smoke at my house on May 16th, you'll know why. Ugh, I still remember the date I met him. I still remember our wedding anniversary date...

I also remember how I casually flirted with this sexy as hell guy with the perfect radio deejay voice at work for 10 months straight, and finally, how he asked me to learn how to waltz with him. To be his partner. Little did either of us know then, that would would be partners forever. That I wouldn't want to dance with anyone but him, today, tomorrow, and forever. I never thought I'd have six chirping piggies in my living room or a Doggie-Pup so filled with love snoring at my feet at night. I never thought I would cuddle up to a tattered tee shirt tucked into my pillow case on nights he's not home... That's love. This is how love is supposed to be. Love is planning romantic dinners on a Wednesday night befor ehe leaves for a 24 hour shift on Thursday, or waiting for a chill Spring evening to light a fire in the fireplace and cuddle up next to him on the couch, laughing at the cats that are laying at our feet and the panting Doggie-Pup begging for attention. I am so much happier with Hubby. I'm happier with him because not only is the world's most perfect man- he respects me. That's something the other one didn't even know how to spell.

Hubby respects me for who I am, and encourages me in whatever hair brained idea I get next. Like my photography and the personalize doodle drenched envelopes I mail picture CDs in. And I do the same for him. I support him in his wild ideas- like growing garlic or home improvement projects. I'm sure this weekend, a wall will have holes get cut into it and a new bookcase will appear in the kitchen since the weather is forecasted too foul for outdoor activities... And that's why I love him. Plus he looks damn sexy in my pink leather tool belt...

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