Introducing Shadow

Well, it was inevitable that the blog would undergo changes of one sort or another. Shadow Byrd has stepped in to help with basic grammar, spelling, and capitalization errors (thank you Shadow!) In the not-so-distant past, I dropped the number of blog posts from three to two and immediately added back the third with a return to a poetry post for the week at a request of one long-time reader. That first post happened this past Thursday with “Changes. The Step to Take. Trust.” Now if you read that and thought it had something to do with me, you’re right. It does. In fact, its a story of me and Shadow.

Shadow and I met a touch over fourteen years on LiveJournal. LiveJournal, or LJ for short, was a blogging site where you could write posts with an associated level of privacy/security so as to limit certain material to a specified audience.  Anyways, you get the picture. Well, on LJ, there would be certain contests for writing, pictures, and the such that folks could vote on. One was a “contest” for an event called “Babes of LiveJournal”. I had come across Shadow’s posts a few weeks back and thought she was gorgeous from her LJ icon photo, so I nominated her.

Almost immediately, she posted to her LJ account asking for whoever nominated her to fess up to the deed. I did so, somewhat grudgingly. I thought I had offended her. Instead, we struck up a private conversation and even traded a few Emails until I asked if it was ok to meet. She lived in the central part of the Dallas/Fort Worth area and I was living north of her in Denton. We agreed on a day and time, and I drove down to meet her.

When I arrived, I pulled up directly in front of her house and stepped out of my truck. I made it to where the sidewalk to her front door met the common sidewalk by the curb and the front door burst open. Shadow ran directly down the sidewalk from the front door, right at me moving at what seemed like full speed, tackling me like an NFL linebacker. I had seen her coming and had braced myself to keep from being knocked down, just barely. She flung her arms around me and held on tightly for what felt like three or four minutes. It took all of six seconds to be overwhelmed by the super-strong connection between the two of us. I put my arms around her and just stayed in that embrace with her. Eventually, we made it inside.

We spent time talking with one another in the living room on the first floor. Just your typical small talk, mostly about things like “did you read so-and-so’s post on LJ yesterday?” All that time, the energy I had felt out in front of the house continued to build and rise. I asked her if she wanted to get something to eat. Once it was solved that we wanted food, we headed out the door to the truck. I opened the passenger door for her and then got in on my side. Driving the whole way there, we held hands as she directed me to the nearby Olive Garden, which was completely packed. I found a parking spot and we sat in the truck for a few moments, until I leaned over to kiss her. We did make it inside but never ordered food. We sat across from one another holding hands at that little table and we immediately decided to leave. This confused our waiter quite a bit, but we certainly were not staying. We spent the rest of the evening in one another’s arms.

You hear it a lot from people about just knowing that this person was “the one” over similar moments like this. I knew Shadow was “the one” the moment we touched in front of the house. That was an overwhelming feeling. I knew our souls were completely intertwined after that first kiss. I know that sounds completely cheesy, but it really is true.

So everything was happily ever after, right? No. Hardly. See, I have never encountered a connection with anyone like this before. Frankly, it scared me to death. When she fell on hardship and pleaded for me to come and be with her and try to work it all out together, I freaked out. I just didn’t know how to deal with everything that was happening and I pushed her away. Eventually, she found another and moved south to Houston to live her life there.

But we never let go of that connection. Even when Shadow shoved me completely out of her life and refused to speak with me, I would check in on her via online platforms to see how she was doing. I wouldn’t write her or leave a message because I wanted to respect her privacy since she had told me not to contact her. I didn’t know that she was doing the same thing with me. Neither of us wanted to let that connection break because we just couldn’t. We are a part of each other’s lives.

It took a few years for us to start talking again. And another few years before we would see each other face-to-face again. The connection was still there. Instead of being faint and old – it was still strong and much more powerful than before. There was also a potential complicating factor since she had married again, but a few conversations between the three of us and we agreed on a poly relationship.

A little over a year has passed since that moment, which brings us to today. I asked Shadow for a handfasting a few months back, and she said yes. We have been planning for our April 10th ceremony for a little bit of time now. Here in a few weeks, I am going to take an even larger step and move down to Houston with her. All of this is the culmination of what started fourteen years ago. An intricate knotwork that we have intertwined through our souls together. I have had some apprehension over this change in my life and did a three-card reading with Kristoffer Hughes’s Celtic Tarot deck which was outlined and explained in the poem. Needless to say, the spread read like someone kicking me in the ass and saying: “Get on with it, you fool. You should have done this long ago.”

So, Shadow is my partner. No part of my life is off-limits with her. As such, she is the editor of this blog. I hope, in the future to entice her to become a co-writer on the blog…co-writing with me from time to time. If you are inclined, Shadow can be found on Facebook or on her own blog, Shadow’s Knit Knacks. Still, I would like for her to write some stuff here if she is game for it.

Without Shadow, I would be completely lost. I intend to spend the rest of my life walking our Path hand-in-hand, long past the end-point of time. Through fourteen years of tears and loss, we have still managed to endure. A connection that cuts through time and space, unbroken and slightly blemished.

–T /|\

Shadow and I at Austin WitchFest 2020…in the rain

2 thoughts on “Introducing Shadow

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