A woman I have known through work for over a decade asked me the other day how I was
For some reason I decided to be a little glass half empty for a change
I said ” I am very overwhelmed these days. Everything is good but I am extremely overwhelmed”
She said “if you could do it all over again would you do it differently?”
I knew she was talking about my separation and divorce.
And the pressure on me and me alone now
I said without blinking
“Yes, I would have done it sooner”
Then she said something others have said to me before ” How come all the separated and divorced people always seem happier than everyone else?”
Ok, first of all NO
and second of all NO
We may seem happier only because of what we climbed out of. Life was really awful before it got better. We are all we’ve got and we alone are making our lives. Truth be told , we can’t afford anymore negativity.
My never -before -felt -level -of -happiness is part what I have been through, part what I have found in myself, part my respect for the shortness of life and to an enormous extent my feeling that I am outrageously lucky. And my somewhat recent understanding of the power that how we are makes us who we are.
But I wish to death that I did not need to walk over hot coals to arrive at this.
We have been through something so difficult and heartbreaking and we have found out what we are made of and what we can do.
Do we feel sad and lonely at times?Do we wish we had one wonderful and long marriage and all the amazing and solid things that come from that? Does our heart break in half in quiet moments at the smallest things that remind us we are alone?
but ‘sooner’ is still my answer.
This happens to me all the time.
Someone is talking about THIS and I think they are talking about THAT.
It makes me feel like an alien.
But in a way that I hold onto a bit fiercely.
On the treadmill, earbuds wedged in, music WAY TOO LOUD, a woman jumps in front waving madly and says
blah blah blah blah APPS in?
I said ‘yeah wasn’t that meal horrible?”
I was talking about a Valentine’s dinner at our club. She was at the table next to us. The food was horrible. As- in- piss -me -off -$150- horrible.
Somehow I thought she was talking about appetizers.
She made it sound very current and very ‘top of the mind’.
She said ‘I am talking about University applications’ Aren’t you glad it is over?’
Ok we both have grade 12 girls but what does this have to do with me? This is in our minds but I can’t allow it to be our only primary focus. It is their journey and we are only there to help and guide but NOT OBSESS. My 17 year old has no idea what she wants to do with her life. Do any of us? She swims in a sea of anxious, worried, stressed out teenagers. I am trying to get her to float on her back and stare at the clouds for a bit.
Yes be engaged in your life, yes do your very best, sign up, show up, push yourself, but enjoy the RIDE. Stress is counter productive.
This reminded me of another interplanetary confusion-
When I was first separated, I ran into an acquaintance who said ” I guess you have to go through that HORRIBLE, TERRIBLE, DIFFICULT process now”
I am thinking- financial statements, court proceedings, dealing with sadness- yours, your children, your community who loved you as a unit,- separation agreements, loneliness, divorce.
She was talking about getting your child into the Middle School of your choice.
What is the fastest way for me to return to my people, my planet?