Magical Truthsaying Bastard Shadesong (shadesong) wrote,
Magical Truthsaying Bastard Shadesong


A lot of people who've met me and Adam more recently are shocked when it comes out that we'd broken up once upon a time. I'd moved up to Atlanta to be with him in 2001; we broke up in December 2002, after a several-month struggle to stay together because we were best friends, dammit...

The breakup lasted a year. In all that time, we stayed living together; stayed in the same bed, even. Came to a lot of realizations. This is a long, long story, and it ended one evening the next December when I came back from my evening walk, dropped to my knees, and proposed to him.

One day, some time later (after the wedding, IIRC), I finally brought out my Ani DiFranco tape and played him "Both Hands". We sat in the car in a Coca-Cola U parking garage and I said "For months, I couldn't get this song out of my head. It was tearing me apart."

I am walking out in the rain
and I am listening to the low moan
of the dial tone again
and I am getting nowhere with you
and I can't let it go
and I can't get through...
the old woman behind the pink curtains
and the closed door
on the first floor
she's listening through the air shaft
to see how long our swan song can last
and both hands
now use both hands
oh, no don't close your eyes
I am writing graffiti on your body
I am drawing the story of how hard we tried

Because Adam was my best friend and my heart and my soul, and I could not imagine me-without-Adam. I reveal now that friends actually had me on suicide watch in December 02. And 2003 was... pretty much the worst year ever, between us being broken up and my dating some truly unworthy people and then there was the epilepsy diagnosis, yeesh.

But we found a way. Because we never stopped being best friends. And we were able to give each other enough space to heal from the wounds we inflicted upon ourselves and each other.

I am watching your chest rise and fall
like the tides of my life, and the rest of it all
and your bones have been my bedframe
and your flesh has been my pillow
I am waiting for sleep
to offer up the deep
with both hands
in each other's shadows we grew less and less tall
and eventually our theories couldn't explain it all

And my husband cried, listening in that dark parking garage to the sound of my extinct fear.

And thanked me for giving him that. And also for never giving it to him when we were breaking up.

In 2007, Ani re-recorded it for her greatest hits album.

And... it was... happy?

Listen for yourself.

I heard the first few notes and was like "erf?" and prepared to hate it. But... I like it. It fits who she is now better, I guess.

Fits who I am now better, too.

and I'm recording our history now on the bedroom wall
and when we leave the landlord will come
and paint over it all

This is who we were. This is how much we meant to each other. This is how hard we fought to keep each other as friends, so hard that our love deepened more and more. This is who we have been.

I am writing graffiti on your body
I am drawing the story of how hard we tried

O, my husband, how I love you. I have scaled the castle wall and fought the dragon and won the handsome prince. Oh, how hard we tried. Hard enough to succeed.
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