Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Affliction

It is an interesting journey to wake up one day and realize you’ve been play acting in your life. Not the first time I’ve had the realization by any stretch and I am positive not only am I not alone but most certainly it is a common occurrence which most people don’t know how to or do anything about, but perhaps the most surprising since I thought I was finally at the stage of recognition. But I suppose each new hurdle, encounter, experience, what-have-you affords you yet another opportunity to slip up and this latest was just so much that I thought for sure this time drama and suffering must be the correct course of action, the emotions most appropriate to the situation. It had to be, right? I mean, every young girl dreams that she will one day grow up, fall in love with someone who loves her and well, a bunch of other people but she’s in the top five or so, marry into bankruptcy and live happily ever after until that joyful day she hears the pitter patter of little feet…from the undersized Keebler lawyers she’s hired to settle her divorce. Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus! Compound that with the relationship gone array and I thought for sure this was time for a full on emotional tempest. But after a couple of months it just grated on me and felt false…and stupid…and pointless. Hey wait, don’t I usually approach my problems with aplomb? Didn’t I put the fun in funeral? Didn’t we put the fun in dysfunction? So what happened that I’m suddenly putting the “y-because I feel like being” in crazy and the “me” in meaningless outbursts!?! Ok, regroup. Instead of acting like I’m a victim in some Greek tragedy it’s time to be my own Deus Ex Machina. I’m not a victim! I’m…the my own VERY dark comedy! Yup that seems to fit better. Yes, this feels familiar, comfortable, way less self-destructive.

It’s tough at times being in these beautiful places having no one with whom to share them. I remember my final day in Cozumel my first contract; I had the most delightful day to myself. I took myself out to lunch where I was serenaded by two mariachi, one of who, either a mid sixties or a very rough lived fifties, lost his place in the middle of the song and at the end he professed, “Seniorita,your eyes-I could not look away.” Smile…yes, I took it as a compliment. My eyes are very striking in the right light. I walked around the city, past the crystalline blue-green water, ripples of radiant diamonds in the noon-day sun. I crept up side streets and down alley ways, dancing through the dappled sunlight shining upon the bright fuchsia petals of bougenvelia. I was so overwhelmed with the romance of it all that I really just wanted to find a stranger with whom I could seal this experience with a kiss. The romance of a city sealed with the kiss of a stranger…my own singular fairy tale that required no prince, no slipper, no pumpkin and no lifelong contract.

But back to reality. So in my current efforts to take back my life, I sent out a message to all of my family and friends regarding the divorce. I was worried we would do this all wrong. You see, I think I may be a bit addicted to convention. Like an alcoholic or sex addict, I crave the thing that hurts me most. I yearn for convention, seek it out, thinking somehow this time it will feel good and make me whole, that this time I can handle it, just a little; I can stop any time. But it’s bullsh*t. Many people are conventional; they want the house, the picket fence, the nine to five, the 2.5 kids and that is in no way a bad thing because they never even question if there is anything else. But the truth is, that is not who I am, it is not my destiny. It sounds arrogant, but I’m special; I’m meant to be the person other people live through, vicariously, I’m meant to be an inspiration; I’m meant to be the one that makes other people question the convention of their own lives. Cool, but a bit unsettling. It doesn’t mean there can be nothing traditional in my life; I love my family and defend them furiously, I crave love and a legacy to leave behind. But I’m friends with nearly every ex, I am acting as my husband’s wing woman, and I don’t adhere to the “When Harry Met Sally” legacy of man-woman interaction that says men and women can never be just friends; conventional wisdom unfortunately shared by the wives and girlfriends of some of my closest acquaintances. So to clear the air, I sent out a message not of sadness or pain, not of anger or guilt but of laughter and support. I asked that our friends not ask us to take sides just as we ask them not to. I asked that they support my husband until I return home and then afford me that same encouragement. And mostly I asked not for punishment, not for forgiveness but mostly for humor. Because that my friends, is who I truly am. That’s what makes me so much cooler than the rest! And that is what I hope inspires you, my (hopefully) avid reader. Here is an excerpt from my message:

“Now before you get all “hugs” and “love you” understand we are still friends and colleagues. We have been together well, my entire adult life, still love each other and are better friends now than we’ve been in years but our life goals and career goals have just diverged and we are happier apart than together. So to recap:

1)No, we are not pregnant, we are divorcing. The baby bump is nothing more than too many pastries and the three pizzas I split with one co-worker.

2)We are remaining friends.

3)That is not a euphemism

4) Ladies, we are divorcing. That was not just a pick up line.”

I was worried my husband would be mad but instead he thanked me and called me doll. We’ll get this divorce stuff right yet! I just hope I don’t have to change the name of blog. Singlesinglegirl just doesn’t have the same ring.

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