Archive for February, 2010

sleeping

February 23, 2010

I have learned something new, and very important.

If you can’t sleep with whom you want, it’s almost as nice to sleep how you want.

I’m not sure if that sounds wierd– let me explain.  My ex and I had a really nice bed.  After a few years of sleeping on a double futon (first with the mattress on the floor, then on a futon frame, then on a cheapass Ikea frame), we splurged on one of those California-King pillow-top magical beds where you just melt right into it at night and kindof slide off in the morning.  Despite that, I suppose it doesn’t need to be said again that I didn’t enjoy sleeping with him, but I’ll say it again.  I didn’t enjoy sleeping with him.  Not in the literal nor in the euphemistic sense; and of course since going to bed also means “going to bed”, it was getting harder and harder for me to get a good night’s sleep since I was just laying there waiting for him to make a move.  But that’s not exactly what this post is about.  Let’s move on.

When I left my husband, I left the bed behind, perhaps obviously.  The sofa I slept on, and the bed that I eventually slept on more permanently, were so. comfy.  And I’m sure a lot of that was due to finally feeling safe.  Now, living with grandma, I’ve got a double bed, with nice sheets, a blanket, a comforter, and a quilt (made by my great-great-whoever).  At some point in the past few weeks, I remembered the covers I had with my husband: just a comforter or blanket (that we did not share, since I am a highly skilled and supremely evil blanket stealer in my sleep).  And you know, I really hated that.  I wanted the sheet.  You can wash a sheet, you can’t wash a Cal-King comforter without a trip to the laundromat, which we only did once or twice in the entire marriage.  Ten years.  Okay, we probably only had the comforter for five years.  But Jesus Christ on a bike, that thing was never washed!  Gross!  At least put a sheet under it, right?  The ex didn’t want sheets.  Anyways, I think I’m ranting… I guess you get the point.

This whole thing is just another example of finally having relief from all the little things that bothered me over the years.  It’s not that important in the scheme of things to have Proper Bedclothes (as I define it), but fuck me if I’m not thankful and relieved to have it now.  Because when you’re happy and being treated well, you don’t mind little things.  So the clothes are on the floor next to the hamper– so what!  But when you’re unhappy and being treated poorly, and when you’re trying to convince yourself that everything’s really okay… those little things are all cuts and bruises.

Anyways.  Hooray for clean sheets.

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dancing and dating

February 12, 2010

Last July, not long after I left my husband, some friends and I stopped for coffee at a place which happened to be hosting swing dancing that evening.  I hadn’t seen swing dancing for over ten years.  It was something I had dabbled in during high school and had always wanted to pursue further, but my spouse was never interested and excused himself with the two left feet argument.  It wouldn’t have been impossible to find another dance partner, but I ran up against my spouse’s jealousy and possessiveness.  He might not want to go with me, but in his eyes, that was no excuse for me to go with someone else.  I forgot about it eventually.

Until that evening in July.  I stared at the dance floor with my mouth wide open.  They were good dancers.  I would have been that good if I’d been dancing for ten years.  I’d taken jazz dance at community college, along with hiphop and ballet, which I loved, but no partner dancing.  So that night at the coffeeshop I felt my first tremors of anger– at what I’d missed during my 20s, anger for letting myself down by pushing aside my dreams, anger at my husband for stunting me and twisting me into his wife rather than encouraging me to be myself.

Back to the present: the next week, a friend promised to take me back there to go swing dancing.  I was really excited at first.  But as the day grew nearer, I got more and more nervous, and I couldn’t figure out why… until I realized I would be facing my past-that-could-have-been.  I remember lamely trying to put it off.  But my friend thought I was going to love it– hell, I was supposed to love it!– and he was excited about taking me out for some fun during a time of little-fun in my life.

We had tapas for dinner.  I remember bacon-wrapped dates with goat cheese.  So far, so good.

Then we went over to the dance.  And I had to be dragged onto the floor.  I was miserable.  I didn’t want to be around all those people.  I should have been one of them, dancing my ass off, not the scared divorced woman in the corner.  I finally convinced my friend that I really really didn’t want to be there, but that was after he’d made me dance a little.  I felt bad, like I’d ruined his night, too.  He assured me I hadn’t, that he’d only wanted me to have fun.  I went home and cried.

So not ready for the world yet… but there was still time, and there still is time.  Still time to learn to dance, to try and remember what else I “always wanted” that I gave up for my marriage, to see what fits into my life now.

divorce ring

February 11, 2010

My divorce is final!  What next?

Figure out what to do with my wedding ring.  I’ve been carrying it around in my purse, in an otherwise-useless pocket.  One of my friends tried to taunt me about it, saying, “It’s not magical or anything, and it’s pretty, you can still wear it.”

I invited him to have a glass of Shut The Fuck Up.

There’s nothing magical about the sensation of weight on my left hand and the feeling of belonging that’s attached to that.  Besides, I’m not really into jewelry, unless you count the weird little frog pendant that I dig out every so often.  And yes, it is a pretty little ring.  But I still feel it not there and love it.  It makes me happy to not wear it.  Why the fuck any woman would want to wear jewelry that was a gift from her ex is beyond me.

So today, while out for groceries, I passed a jewelry shop, so I went in and asked if there was a way I could trade it in.  Sure can!  $80 cash, $165 trade-in.  Wow!  What can I get for $165??

As it turns out, not a whole hell of a lot.  I browsed around a bit, then tried to cram a few earrings into my poor little almost-closed piercings (those were so important when I was 16…), but I really wasn’t enjoying myself.  I don’t know how much of that was due to the whole adventure of getting rid of my wedding ring, and how much was due to the unusually large amount of coffee I’d consumed that morning, and how much I was just not in the mood for shopping… But I am sure that a great deal of it was on account of the finality of my divorce and the final symbol of that.  Grandma says there is a place in Vegas where people throw their wedding rings– a fountain or something– but fuck if I’m gonna throw something with that much cash value into a pool of water for someone else to find and trade in.

Shit, it’s 9 PM already.  This day has gone by so fast.  I worked on a friend’s resume all morning and made it totally awesome, dropped gma off at AA, (had a nice cry in my car while she was in there, and a bar of chocolate!), had lunch with her and my dad, went to Costco for a failed attempt to replace gma’s lost hearing aid (what??), then went home and had to manage a total temper meltdown from gma.  I have a fair amount of compassion and I can stay pretty calm as long as I’ve had enough sleep.  She’s got a lot of chronic pain, anxiety about death, and has generally required a high amount of maintenance all her life… but then she did ask for her anxiety meds, which I feel is a good sign.  That and she had an appointment with a counselor from hospice 30 minutes later, coincidentally.  Just enough time to stop swearing up a storm (very out of character for her) and wipe her face.

Anyways.  Tomorrow is day off.  Will visit library and music store for sheet music.