A couple days later, Bobby showed up at my work with flowers in his hand and remorse in his heart, promising never to hit me or hurt Blondie again. He looked awful, like he hadn't slept since the unfortunate incident in West Hollywood. He also reeked of cigarettes and alcohol. It was all I could do not to turn away from him in disgust but this was my place of work and I didn't want anyone to know what had happened.
We went outside and stood in the parking lot and stood with the all the grease that had leaked out onto the cracked pavement. He tried to put his arm around me but I put up my hand up to stop him, like a trainer would do to communicate "stay" to a dog. He got the message. Even the tears streaming down his face didn't move me to comfort him. I was determined to stay away from him; if not for my own sake, for my dog Blondie.
At that moment, I saw that his alcoholism was just one of the symptoms that ran Bobby’s life. He suffered from so many symptoms. His obsessive cleanliness, for instance, struck me as an attempt to cleanse his own dirty parts. I realized that I was drawn to people like Bobby because of my need, my own obsession, to fix others. When I uncovered that truth in myself, I felt completely mortified. Who nominated me as a Saint? It was time to focus on myself. I needed to let others live their own lives and learn their own lessons. But with this need to help others so ingrained in my psyche, I wondered how I was going to do that.