A Life More Complete

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Authors: Nikki Young
that
flight, I swear that damn plane was going to crash. The turbulence was awful.” The
funny part of this story is that with my job I have flown on seaplanes that
seated six and private jets, helicopters and pretty much every aircraft ever
made, so my fear of small planes ended quickly with the exception of flying
from Chicago to Madison. I still couldn’t bring myself to get on a plane with
the intent of flying that short of a distance. When I was on that fateful
flight I prayed to God that if he kept the plane flying I would never waste
time on something so tedious. I saw it as a sign when it didn’t crash and even
though I wasn’t a serious churchgoer I owed it to God for possibly saving my
ass from plummeting to my death in a run-down regional jet somewhere over
Rockford.
    “I love that story,” David says. “It
wasn’t that bad. You can be so dramatic sometimes.”
    “Your face was priceless,” Gia joins
in. “I think you even screamed out loud once. The flight attendant gave you the
evil eye. Remember? I checked your pants when we got off to see if you peed.” I
chuck a pillow at her and scowl.
    “Okay, enough making fun of me. I
overreacted. Better? At least I can admit it now.” I throw my hands up in
defeat.
    “As stimulating as you two are, I
have to go to bed. Someone has to work for a living around here.”
    David pecks Gia on the lips and heads
to the bedroom. Gia and I sit in silence for a few seconds before she begins
again. “So, if I guess why you’re here, will you tell me?”
    “No, Gia, I won’t,” I say shaking my
head.
    “Fine. I won’t ask again,” she
admonishes.
    “Yes you will, who are you kidding?” I
laugh.
    “I know, sorry. So, how’s Ben?” she
asks changing the subject.
    “He’s Ben, totally and utterly
perfect.” Just saying his name makes me smile like a fool. Gia looks at me and
smiles back.
    “He is so adorable,” she says in an
exaggerated tone. “So when are you going to admit it?”
    “Admit what?” I play dumb, but I know
exactly what she’s talking about. My feelings for Ben are so foreign that I can’t
even understand how to process them.
    “Really? So that’s how it’s going to
be? It’s obvious that you love him,” she says shaking her head at me.
    “I need a drink.” I roll my eyes at
her and leave the room. By the time I reach the kitchen my anxiety is out of
control, not because of fear, but because she’s right. I pull another beer from
the refrigerator and drink much faster than necessary. When Gia comes into the
kitchen, I sigh deeply and wait for her motherly lecture. She’s been like this
since we were kids. It’s almost like she feels the need to fill in where my
mother failed. She runs her hand through her hair and glares at me.
      “I know what you’re doing. Stop avoiding
my question and stop pushing him away. Maybe you don’t do it intentionally or
maybe you do. I don’t know. I just know you use your job as a shield to hide
from relationships, but it’s more than that. You’re not your mother or father. You’re
a kind, loving person. You won’t repeat their mistakes and I know Tyler fucked
you up big time, but move on.”
    As much as it hurts to hear Gia’s
words I know she’s right. I am holding back for all those reasons and more.
    “Thanks, Gia. I really needed this,”
I whisper.
    “Me, too. I’m so glad you’re here. I
wish you could stay longer.”
    It’s late, far too late for Gia to be
up. Knowing her kids will wake at the crack of dawn, we both retire. As I brush
my teeth and wash my face I replay Gia’s words in my head “ I know Tyler fucked you up big time, but move on. ” Thoughts of
Tyler flood my memory and I clench my eyes shut in an attempt to obliterate him
from my memory like I’ve done so many times before.
      My fingers begin to tap as I climb into
bed taking a few deep breaths and as soon as my head hits the pillow, I’m out. I
can’t remember a time when I’ve slept so

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