Born April 23, 1989 in Oklahoma and died on January 30, 2012 at 4:20 am :o) in San Diego, California at the age of 22.
So I guess I've been wanting to write this post for a very long time, seemingly.
About Bradley ... and we didn't have a romantic interlude ... we had a sharing. I imagine that He saved my life and probably the lives of anyone that was on the road that night because; I was reckless and out of control.
He stopped me.
He had the time and took the time to let me rest and I him. We held each other and shared our lives. He was sick with a cold at the time and I cared for him ... bought him a sandwich and gave him a few good nights sleep and he stayed with me while I drank all day and night and didn't let me drive ... we took walks and were both grateful to have the other to just be there. There were no promises or talks about tomorrow or even the next minute. We did have sex and I was grateful for it . :)))
When we were to part ways he said that it was going to be hard to say goodbye ... so I said let's just leave it at hello and we did.
He wrote a few weeks later to say he made it to San Diego (we exchanged emails when we were together) and I went to my husband and shared with him that Bradley wrote (I didn't imagine that he would ever be in touch).
From: Bradley Pollard
Sent: Saturday, October 29, 2011 11:46 AM
hey how you doing this is brad the guy you meet out on the road so how have you been sorry we had to so goodby i was just so out there on the road well i made it to sandigo cali
My husband said do not write him and so I didn't. But it kept coming up for me to somehow share with Bradley that the Marine base was down there and to go enlist so that he would have a roof over his head and some food and that they would be so lucky to have a guy like him helping them.
I even asked my husband to write it, because he knows I care for these guys ... Bradley was not the first guy that I've cared for there was one at each Earthdance “Pineapple” (not sexual) and one we met in Redding, but Bradley was the first that my husband wasn't there for.
He didn't write him and I let it go but didn't feel good about it ... felt like I owed Brad for saving my life (in my imagination or not; that's what I felt) and somehow he was imprinted on me (most people I cant even remember their first name), his whole name stuck with me and even with all the drinking can still vividly remember a lot of what he shared about his life.
When I found out he had died I was surprised by how much it affected me. Cried a lot and had no one to share it with ... Even when I did attempt to share it nothing helped. There’s something very all alone about death...for me anyway ... it seems it cannot be shared and it felt like a hole in my chest and there was guilt because he saved my life; but I didn't save his. There had been a strong push to get in contact but I didn’t want to risk my relationship with my husband, ultimately, I was a chicken.
Bradley seemed like the kind of guy that other people's lives would be changed from ... like he did mine. He seemed to have so much to share and now I guess it happens through me, in the sense that I have been in touch with is biological family and his Aunt who is in the midst of some kind of Spiritual Breakthrough for lack of a better word or description and we have been sharing things about it and about Bradley who she created a memorial site for.
There have been so many synchronicities around Bradley ... for one ... I found out he was in boarding school (like my Son) and that he was part Native American (like me) and he shared with me that he had been very broken up after his Father died when he was 14 (my father was also gone at that same age) or so and he ran away from Oklahoma at 16 and didn't go back. The boarding school is Eastern Oklahoma Tribal School (EOTS) <--- (interesting eh) the website is www.eots.org. His Aunt is named Joy (not a common name) and has been involved with ACIM (of all books) and is now bringing enlightened material she said stemmed from Bradley's passing to the Christian Bible Belt people.
Recently I was watching "Parenthood" a tv show that I am hooked on and they played the song "albatross" which is on Bradley's memorial site http://bradley-pollard.last-memories.com/ . When I first heard it on his site I fell in love with it and went and looked it up it's by Fleetwood Mac and wondered how I could have not heard it before its been around for 30 years and then here it is months later and its playing on my favorite TV show (write to his aunt asking why that song and she says it was his Dads favorite and they had played it at his Dads funeral). And I am again reminded to remember him ... it has not been like I have been trying to remember him ... it is just that he keeps showing up ... 3 days ago I got an email from his Aunt who hadn't written in a few weeks and shared with me that it was his Birthday ... April 23rd so I sent her a picture video I had made and she put it on his site.
Sometimes it feels like he is with me ... I don't mean like a ghost but sort of ... like somehow he is seeing out of me and like when I am cutting a broken tree branch or doing something in the yard (he's a Gardner) he sort of is there to help me though not physically but sort of cheering me on and I sure don't mind it ... and don't ask me to explain it cause I hardly understand I am just grateful for it and probably delusional but it gets the job done :)
So this is what I sent to myTeacher back in October right after getting back:
Sent: Sunday, October 16, 2011 8:37 AM
I am not comfortable at all sharing what happened last week. When my husband did some things in the name of pleasure or whatever, you told me to buck up and pretty much let it go. I am not saying that I haven't done something to hurt him and I am not asking to get out of it or asking for him to buck up. We have not had a conventional sexual marriage and yes I have crossed a line we didn't agree on or that we agreed not to cross. However maybe he is not even coming back and why would we want to drag each other's shit through the mud. It seems like what I did is enough damage but to make him have to read it to...to make everyone else read it and know about it before I have even spoken with him seems hurtful even more than what has already happened.
Since this is all in retrospect, I don't know how accurate it really is.
So, I will share it with you and if you feel it is something worth sharing with everyone, who at this point in time seem to be acting as if they have not ever made a mistake in their life and that at some point in time haven't been exactly where I am, sorry that comes from fear and defensiveness.
I wanted to drink ... I've been wanting to drink ... if I heard a simple thing like my Friend saying she was going home for a wine cooler I would get mad and jealous. Or my other Friend talking about getting trashed at her party had me drooling ... I also know my husband wants/wanted to ... called him and asked him to meet me at the bar in Ft. Jones. Told the bartender I wanted to forget who I think I am for awhile and started ordering Whiskey sours.
My husband and I had some fun, played some pool and watched some football. Then we had to leave and I didn't want to go home just yet I wanted to has some fun ... he wanted to go meet up with his friend that lived around the corner. Even drove around the block to see if he would come with me but he was still sure he didn't want to. I must have been pretty trashed but not trashed enough ... the thought was that I had blown it ... that I wasn't supposed to be drinking and now I had no where to go ... so I went to Rite aid and bought a big ass bottle of Vodka and some bloody mary mix as well as a big bottle of whiskey (crown royal black). I took out $200 cause I thought I might need money and I drove to Costco in Medfor and got Redbull, almonds, bread and water (have no idea why I went there or at least no recollection why and how I got all that stuff and checked out and even remember it ... yet was completely drunk … I don't know) however I went to customer service and cut up my American Express Costco card (so that no more money could be spent) and then went to get gas (daaah … you cut up the card stupid) she let me use my debit card anyway even without proof of membership and I started driving again.
I don't remember anything until I got to the Redwoods. I pulled over for a hitchhiker (at this point probably suicide was well on my mind feeling no options) so I probably imagined this person would be a killer and all would be taken care of ... it was raining and dark and I didn't know who was getting into the car until he did. We drove for a few miles? Feet? And there were two more hitchhikers...they got in and it felt like they all knew each other but I don't know … I just started driving down the winding roads fast playing pink floyd and talking about death.
When we got to the place where you go left or right towards the ocean...the two in the back got out...the guy in the front (Bradley) said something like he wasn't afraid to die.
I was smashed cause I am not remembering driving away from those guys but I do remember being parked somewhere and thinking ... is this guy gonna rape me and I think I asked him that and he maybe laughed and said no … and it broke the ice. He kisses me. It is nice. It is passionate. We talked for a long time and then he said it would be good to get some sleep ... I told him I didn't have money only $200 and had no idea how long that would have to last for gas and food ... so we went to a boat marina and parked and he slept and I watched him for a long, long time ... it rains all night and this kid ... what is he doing ...he's got no home ... and yet seems so trusting and has kind eyes.
He sounds like he has a cold and I try to keep him covered up but he is on the passenger side of the car and it's hard to put the blankets around him without waking him up. He wakes about 7am and he is looking for some beers and I have still been drinking the whole time but barely slept. We get the beer and I want to play in the ocean ... I want to run and jump and get chased by waves ... so I did ... for awhile and then it was cold and rainy and I didn't pack for being away but I had some change of pants (PJs I had bought one pair for me and one for myFriend for our trip to Texas ... pink camouflage pants no less) so I put them on and feel warmer and Wings sockers (tears) big wooley booleys kept me toasty.
We took some walks and talked … him about his having 13 brother's and sisters and coming from Oklahoma ... and when he had just turned 16 he started walking and has been since ... he says he was 22. I try to imagine his life but have no idea how he has stayed so nice and not jaded but actually a really lucky person for me to have bumped into ... as I had thought I was going to be murdered ... and those thoughts did continue through my time with him. I guess I got pretty drunk cause he took us to a hotel and I did go in but he told me later that I didn't pay the lady but gave him my debit card and he paid. I don't remember going in the room but I remember waking up in it and being happy to be warm. We spent a lot of time holding each other.
I bump into people like him (little guys...not in size...but inside...they seem so little and just like to be held). I won't say it was all innocent, even though it is ... it isn't innocent in the pain that it has brought to other people but it was innocent in itself. I didn't sleep much again and watched him rest ... wondering if he gets much rest and if I hadn't shown up would he have just been in the rain ... what is this kind of life like and how spoiled I am to not know.
The hotel did not have phones in the room ... it sounds weird but they didn't ... they had kitchen, tv, even a butcher knife on the counter but no phone. My husband called sometime that night (he had gotten the hotel off of the debit card charge) and as I recall I had every intention of coming home and was so glad to hear his voice. I had been thinking that I wouldn't ever hear it again and told him that I was coming home ... however, the next day I didn't rush ... I continued to drink ... the Whiskey clears the thoughts and the Bloody Marys fill my stomach along with bread and water and hang around the ocean and the place lets us stay a bit longer ... he says it will be hard to say goodbye and I say then we will leave it at hello.
He asks if he can have the alcohol and I give him the vodka and keep the whiskey.
We drive to a place he says he's been told he can stay for a few days. We drive up he gets out we hug and I drive away. I drive around the corner and find myself back there and he comes out ... says what are you doing ... I say something like I don't know and get back in the car and start driving.
I remember stopping and trying to use the atm and it didn't work so I threw the card away and got back on the road ... remember sleeping in a rest stop and getting the first couple of good hours asleep in the car ... woke up to some clear headed whiskey and started driving but had no idea where I was until it was clear I wasn't headed home ... that I had become scared of telling my husband what I had done and afraid of what You were going to say and do. I didn't want to deal with the road I had just taken. I didn't want the responsibility of my actions. I drove all the way to Washington, ran out of gas, had not much money maybe $80 and wanted to go home. Wanted to not have said all the things I had said ... wanted not to have hurt my husband, disappointed my Friends or to face not listening to You, myTeacher.
The pain of my husband not being here has been huge. We have had a strange sexual relationship and we have had to overcome many obstacles and I am not excusing what I did ... it was not part of any agreement we had and although I had every intention of telling him, which I did as soon as he asked...I wasn't proud of it and it felt wrong (within our marriage wrong).
I thought I would have called first, granted there was no phone, but I thought I had become the person that had learned that cheating hurts and that I wouldn't do it again. Yet here I am again. You know my husband has said at times that it would be cool if people could just have sex with whoever they want ... you know we are sitting around the dining room table and people just say "hey want to have sex" and that just makes it seems so, you know, painless...and sometimes you can set life up so that those situations are there...that everyone at the table knows they are there for sex.
For me ... it seems ... it is not so much the sex ... it is the closeness and the intimacy ... the tenderness and the gentle touches and the looks, feeling wanted.
Sometimes yes it is just sex...just fucking...but after awhile that just makes me miss the intimacy more. I have had issues with getting older and being tossed away, that I am not pretty enough, have no talents and having my son here ... I have nothing to offer him and that is so in my face ... I am even more scared of the world … he and maybe I will have to face if there is no one that cares. And maybe that is all I am for him ... I am someone that cares. I cannot live his life for him or take away his tatoos or make people see the gentle giant that I do. But he isn't ever alone ... not really ... maybe physically but not inside. He still has to stand up ... just like I do and be who we are.
So now I am home, with my son, who has to be out by Friday. I've got probably $100 bucks to my name but a roof over my head and food in the cabinets ... no credit or debit or gas cards and I have no idea if my husband is coming back, not that he should (but please do), I don't know how you ever heal the kind of thing that I have just done. I don't know if that is possible. God I love my husband. I don't want it to be over. I want my poor behavior to be over. I want him to know that I didn't do any of this to hurt him. I don't think I could have planned any of what happened cause if what I had planned to have happen happened...I wouldn't be typing this. However I am glad that didn't happen even though I have hell to face right now. This is the worst to face...to know I am liar, a cheater, not dependable and also that I don't feel sorry for me...I have brought all of this upon myself and all I can do is wait and see.
(scared to send this)
So that is what I wrote back in October and it seems like lifetimes have past since then. That one trippy trip and all the ramifications of it have made today and I am reminded that there is beauty in the pain.
On May 3, 2012, at 8:02 AM, my Friend wrote:
OK - that explains it pretty good.
The following is a video that I spent days putting together after he died ... it was very healing and was helpful in processing much of the guilt that had been coming up around his death. Sent it to his Aunt Joy who put it up on her youtube account.