The Anchor

This afternoon, B and I found ourselves in a familiar spot–my parents deck. From this vantage point, we can see the water and we watch the activity of the city below us.

It’s always the same lazy Sunday afternoon dance. We sit in wooden lounge chairs. The sun is warm, but there is a cool breeze blowing in from the ocean. Every once in awhile, you can smell the salt in the air. He is, as usual, sucking on a Marlboro red, flicking the ashes into a soda-can-turned-ashtray. I (as usual) am sucking down a rum and Coke.

We are arguing. Not a dramatic, heated passionate argument, but a laid back conversation about a topic that has been discussed hundreds of times during our 7 years together. It’s something that neither of us are willing to budge on. We’ve beaten this thing into the ground and now it has become apparent that it has come down to the wire. Someone will have to give, because our future and our happiness is at stake, and there is no obvious compromise.

And so, like always, I utter the same words I’ve said again and again. The words that always bring this argument to a close. The phrase he never knows how to respond to.

I say “I’m just a free spirit. I can’t help it.”

He looks over at me, takes a drag of his cigarette, and exhales. This time is different. This time he speaks.

He says, plain and simple, “And I am an anchor.”

I don’t know why, but his response really touched me. I repeated it back to him. “Yes, you’re right. You are an anchor.” I nodded and smiled and sat back in my chair and thought about it. I wonder what sort of life I would have lived, where I would be today, what kind of person I would have become, if it weren’t for that anchor. Holding me tight, refusing to let go, no matter how much I twisted and turned and fought against it.

Thank you B, for doing what you thought was best, and keeping me grounded in a crazy world.

1 Response to “The Anchor”

  1. 1 Areto September 12, 2006 at 8:53 am

    that’s a sweet story. Y’all make me smile.

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