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Not Enough March 30, 2011

Posted by J. in Genius.

For a long time, I’ve known how to say “not enough” in sign language.  I saw it in a movie or a TV show ages and ages ago.  In it this guy is breaking up with some girl and I don’t think she’s deaf, which makes it even more odd in my brain that when he tells her he loves her but not enough, he signs the words “not enough”.  God help me, I wish I could remember why.

It’s not enough information to Google, even.  I know.  I’ve tried.

It must have been the fact that the character signed the words that made the moment more poignant, and I think it’s why the expression “I love you, but not enough,” has stuck in my head for all these years.  You know how sometimes you hear or see something and only a little bit of it gets stuck, but it gets stuck in a way that it comes up again and again at random intervals?  Yeah, like that.

One time, it popped into my head so I wrote a story around the idea.  Isn’t that what everyone does when a line of dialogue from a movie they saw half a lifetime ago and barely remember at all comes into their heads?  No?  Weird.  Happens to me all the damn time.

Unfortunately, I can’t post the whole thing here because even with a parental warning it’s still not suitable for any impressionable youths that might stumble upon my blog, and come to that, it’s probably out-of-bounds for a lot of the adults.

And again, seeing this Madhouse topic on the list made that line pop right up again.  “I love you, but not enough.”  Since I can’t think of anything else to write on the subject, I’ll just share the last scene of the story, since it’s the part that’s pertinent to the topic, and the only scene suitable in any way for sharing.

There’s no message to this, by the way.  It’s not based on any personal experience and I’m not sending out cries for help or anything like that.  It’s fiction.  I totally made it up.  Writers do that.


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Rick woke and opened his eyes. The sun had risen full in the sky and was shining brightly into the room, so he closed them again. Unsure if he’d been asleep for ten minutes or two hours and not caring either way, he stretched luxuriously in the sun like a cat in a windowsill.

“Hey,”  Paige said softly, and he turned quickly, expecting to see her still in bed next to him. She was sitting in a chair by the window, dressed, with a small bag by her feet. “I was wondering when you were going to wake up,” she said.

“How long have you been sitting there,” he asked.

“Awhile, I guess.”

He looked down and saw the bag. “What’s that?”

She stood and crossed to him and sat down on the edge of the bed. “I’m going to go stay at my mom’s for awhile,” she said, and he sat up. He started to speak, but she put a hand on his arm to stop him.

“Just listen,” she said. “I have some things to tell you and it’s not going to be easy, so just let me get it all out, okay?”

A cold, hollow feeling formed in the pit of his stomach. “Okay,” he said, but the word got stuck in his throat, and he swallowed hard.

“I’ve been feeling this way for awhile and I didn’t know how to tell you. I think part of the reason I kept pushing you away is that I don’t feel the same way about you anymore.” She paused and took a deep breath. “I kept telling you ‘it’s not you, it’s me’…” He nodded. “Well, it’s not entirely true. I love you, but the truth is that I’m not in love with you anymore.”

The honesty of her words–an honesty that had been absent for so long between them–hit him like a kick to the chest.  His mind raced, confused.  Why didn’t she say something sooner…if she had only been willing to admit this months ago…years ago…why did she wait until there was nothing left to repair…why now when it’s too late…why tell me now if there’s nothing I can do to fix this…

He looked into her eyes and searched her face for answers.  He saw the hurt and sadness there, and he knew all at once where it came from. Not anything he had done, not anything he hadn’t done, but only what they had finally become.  He opened his mouth to speak, then closed it again, not sure where to even start.

“I swear, it’s nothing you did, or didn’t do.” He nodded in mute agreement as she spoke the words he was thinking. “And I promise you, I tried. Here,” she said, gesturing to the bed, “is where we’ve always clicked.  But it feels like a lie, and it has for a long time. I’ve been sitting there thinking about it and I think the other part of why I’ve been pushing you away is because it’s so hard to pretend to feel something I don’t. Not anymore.

“I know a lot of couples get past the whole fireworks part and settle into a close, loving partnership, but I don’t think I’m one of them. I think I need the fireworks. Maybe I’m just in love with being in love and when the ‘in love’ part passes, I get resentful. I don’t know.” She shrugged, letting her hands fall in her lap.

“One thing I do know is that you deserve more. You’re a good man,” she said, tears filling her eyes, “and you’ve always treated me better than I deserved.” He took her hands in his as the tears streaked down her face. “You’ve been kind and patient, and you are the sweetest, most thoughtful person I’ve ever met. No one can say you didn’t give it everything you had. But in the end, while I do love you, I just don’t love you enough. You should be with someone who can love you with everything she’s got.”

Rick sat and held her hands while she cried softly. His throat was tight and his mouth was dry, and the hollow feeling had become a dull ache that was spreading all through him.

She stood up and leaned over him, kissing him softly on the lips. She picked up her bag and quickly walked out of the room. She stopped at the doorway and turned over her shoulder. Through her tears, she said, “I’ll call you in a couple days, okay? So we can really talk.” He nodded mutely, and with no words at all from him, she was gone.

He lay back heavily against the pillows that still smelled of lavender and their lovemaking. He turned his head to her empty side of the bed and saw where she had left her simple gold wedding band on her pillow.



1. Yorkie - March 30, 2011

Was this the story where it gets a lot more…erm…energetic?? I think I remember that one…

2. bezzie - March 30, 2011

Oh it’s totally his fault the relationship crumbled. Rick’s having an identity crisis. He’s clearly a “Tony” living trapped in a Rick’s body.

poopslacey - March 30, 2011

And Tony is short for Antoinette. Really, it’s a much more complex story than anyone really knows…

bezzie - March 30, 2011

Hehehehehehehe! You gotta thing for girls named Tony/i don’t you? 😉

poopslacey - March 30, 2011

Oh, Bezz…that’s a whole ‘nother story for another day. 😉

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