Monday, March 21, 2011
I Could Drink a Case of You
I'd been waiting since our day in court on March 2nd for the news. I'd emailed my attorneys asking for an update a week after the court appearance. The judge was out of town, they said. So I waited some more thinking I would email the attorneys again after the weekend. Maybe the beginning of Spring would bring good news.
Or not. But it wasn't the bad news about the money that was the worst thing. Instead of days of waiting, I could have used a prompt email last Tuesday when the ruling came down. Or a phone call. I could have used a tiny slice of personal communication--something like, "Dear Denise, We're sorry to be the bearers of bad news, but don't be discouraged, and here's what we'll do next..." I could have used a scrawled post-it note stuck to the corner of the blurry photocopy with some kind missive like "hang in there"--or even a crude little drawing of a frowny face. Nope.
I admit to dark thoughts. I have them. I'd been having them less. But Saturday night the dark thoughts had a party. They wore black and carried knives. They looped ropes over beams. They made tea and reminded me that the deranged husband in Tim O'Brien's excellent novel In the Lake of the Woods killed his wife with boiling water while she slept. I didn't sleep Saturday night. I sat in my bed frozen with dread. I emailed Mr. Ex. I texted him. Then the sun sort of rose--or did what the moon did the night before--lurked somewhere behind the clouds while doing its job in a less than satisfactory way. And that's what I did Sunday. I skipped a good friend's fabulous First Day of Spring party and drank mimosas in my pajamas with M. while we watched basketball. Then I crawled to bed and slept the day away.
When I woke I felt stupid and lazy and realized I had a house full of people whom I love. I cobbled together dinner, took a shower while the chicken was in the oven, then lit the candles and sat at the dining room table like a human being. And somewhere in there I'd talked on the phone with the man who loves me. He was wrestling with his own First Day of Spring demons. "You'll know what to do," he said. "You always do." Or somethin' like that. Maybe not, I thought. And maybe this thing between us could be going a little better.
I was putting the last of the dishes into the dishwasher when the brass door knocker that nobody ever uses announced that someone was at the door. Yup. "Someone's at the door," the daughters said without moving as if they knew it was for me. There he was, the man who loves me standing in the rain with a little cluster of daffodils in one hand and a case of wine hoisted onto one shoulder. You read that right. Not a bottle. A case.
I'm still on my feet.