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It’s harder to write about this than I thought it would be.

November 17, 2009

Just like marriage, divorce is harder than I thought it would be.

Specifically, I’ve become just a bit needy. Sitting at home used to be my favorite thing in the world to do. I’d put an Ella Fitzgerald record on and drink some wine and stare into space and think and write and meditate and light incense. And now I can’t stand to do it for longer than a couple of hours. I actually look forward to going to work in the mornings, which is a really scary thought. And every night when the workday is finally over, I look at the next 4-5 hours stretching before me and wonder how in the world I will fill them.

But, God, I do remember this feeling. I had it right before my doctor diagnosed me as clinically depressed last April. The agonizingly slow passage of time coupled with the sense that time is passing much too quickly, and if I could just stop it for a bit, I could figure everything out and then proceed with my life without missing a beat. I guess it all comes down to feeling passed by. Passed over.

I have some friends, but they seem preoccupied with their lives. I’ve realized how much married people really do just sit at home and do nothing. Since they have someone else sitting there doing nothing with them, they develop a sense of false comfort that they’re actually doing something. I know this, because I did exactly that.

I have a dog, of course. We go for walks. I talk to him more than I’d like to admit. We play. But our relationship has its limits, since he can’t really talk back.

And then there are some guys. Who are interested in dating me. The Guy I Met at a Dog Park a couple months ago; when he asked me out, I asked for a raincheck so I could get my shit together first and not pull him into the vortex that was my confused and confusing life. The Guy Who’s Been a Friend but made it clear when we met that he was interested in more, if the time were ever right. The Guy Who Works on My Floor who takes my breath away when he kisses me, which he did for the first time after a work outing the night before Halloween.

But I’m afraid these guys can sense The Crazy that’s inside of me right now. I don’t hold any of the power in any of these relationships. I sat home all last weekend willing one of them to call, to no avail. Before I was married, the power was always exclusively mine because I simply never really cared that much about all of it. Now I think it’s a really bad mixture of not wanting to go home alone, not wanting to die alone, and, well, actually caring, actually showing people myself–all of myself–for the first time. I’m here for the taking. Or for the rejecting.

Last night The Guy Who Works on My Floor took me out on a date. And then took me home. And there was some kissing, and the removal of various clothing items, and some touching, and then, at a very crucial moment, he stopped abruptly and asked me to tell him about the boy I fell in love with. Without thinking, I corrected him. I said, “Man. He’s a man.”

My head spinning, partly from all the wine at dinner and partly from all the aforementioned touching, I tried to understand what in the world he was talking about. Oh yeah. Last week he asked me about my wrist tattoo. I told him it was a lotus, which symbolizes consciousness. I told him I’d been asleep for a while, but now that I’m awake I don’t want to go back to being asleep, and the tattoo is a reminder of that. He asked me what woke me up. I told him I fell in love with someone who wasn’t my husband.


I’m really actually interested in this guy, the first guy I’ve really actually been interested in–and single–for a long time. But because he asked, I ended up telling him basically everything, all of my tragic secrets, that I’ve had sex with only two people: my husband, and this “man.” That this “man” is also married, and his wife still doesn’t know about the affair. That I broke the affair off 1.5 years ago and told my husband. That you think you know what love is until you actually know what love is. That I realized I can’t force myself to love someone.

Basically, that I’m an undateable wreck. Needless to say, the frenzy stopped, and he left around 10:30, saying it was a “school night.” I asked him if he thinks I’m a bad person. He said he’s not one to judge. But the fact of the matter is that I still am married. At least for the rest of 2009, due to my state’s divorce laws. And, of course, we still haven’t filed. And, of course, I’ve proven that I really have no problem with adultery. But I’m separated! I pleaded. It’s just a piece of paper! I dug myself in further.

Shit shit.

I don’t know anything about any of this. And it all feels somehow simultaneously too soon and too late.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. Ptolemy permalink
    November 18, 2009 12:23 pm

    I’m having this panicky feeling, too. Only it’s my parents who have abandoned me (at my late age of 42)… They moved. And other than a PO Box, I don’t know where they are. They were moving anyway, but the lack of communication is because my 5-year-old blew a raspberry at my mother who is a germaphobe and I didn’t beat him to a pulp. It’s so weird. I can’t think my way out of a paperbag right now.

    Not to burden YOU with it, but just to say, I understand that loose ends kind of feeling.

  2. Tressa permalink
    November 18, 2009 1:53 pm

    Please don’t be to hard on yourself. You are going through alot right now. It is hard. But you will come out on the other side just fine. You will pull it all together, your life will be dateable again. I promise.

  3. November 18, 2009 2:36 pm

    I can relate to feeling like time just won’t co-operate. I want to know how my life is going to turn out, who I’m going to end up with etc. but at the same time I don’t want to be forced to make any decisions right now. I keep wanting to just slow things down.

    Thinking of you doll.

  4. November 18, 2009 9:38 pm

    When I separated my first attempts at dating were total disasters. Finally, about 9 months into the separation (the state I divorced in has strict laws and it took us 15 months to get divorced and it was uncontested), I found I was in a place where I was ready to date. There were still moments where I felt like I didn’t have my shit together, but for the most part, I think I did.

    So hang in there and don’t beat yourself up. Oh, and give yourself some time before you jump back into dating – you do have a little bit of Crazy right now, it’s expected and it’s normal, but dating will be much easier when some of the Crazy has dispersed a bit.

  5. Jason permalink
    November 18, 2009 10:32 pm

    You can’t expect yourself to separate from someone else who you have been for so long and be able to jump into the “dating” scene, besides its confusing to start with. Add in your problems and it’s bound to be a wreck.
    Find something to do, find a new hobby, get a second job, something… anything to take your mind off of whatever is going on in your head. It may seem like life is full of pieces that don’t fit together, but when you least expect it too, everything will fall into place.

    Right where everything should be.

  6. theodoreclancy permalink
    November 19, 2009 9:12 am

    I want Ptolemy (1st comment) to do more writing. I’m facinated by that story.

  7. November 28, 2009 2:25 am

    You are doing the same thing I do when the world moves under my feet- writing. Write it all out. Keep writing. You have a wonderful way of communicating the truth of your life.

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