Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Winter Solstice

"How have you been feeling?" the man who loves me asked this morning as we lay in bed. It's hard to give an accurate answer to that question in that setting, in those circumstances.
"I think I'd be feeling fine," I said, "if I could just get The Someone's signature on the last two divorce documents." We talked for a little longer. Got up. Had our toast and coffee and went our separate ways.

Instead of walking Humane Society dogs right after exercising, I went home to pursue the missing pages--(mistake #1.) I'm not sure what mistake #2 or #3 was, but the cold-bloodedness of the whole thing tsunami-ed over me about two minutes after I walked in the door. I don't buy the argument that The Someone is just trying to hang on to me, that he doesn't want to sever those last connections. It's torture he wants. Drawing it out and making me ask, and ask, and ask. Back when I was going to therapy, my therapist told me that I was being treated the same in my divorce as I was treated in my marriage. It explained a lot.

What it doesn't explain is this feeling of sometimes still wanting my family intact. How could I want that given what I have now contrasted with how I was treated then? What warped reasoning possesses me to wonder what we might be doing for Christmas if...? To imagine all of us together in some snowy respite gathered around a fire, or under a beach umbrella in a tropical paradise, or even in the same room of our house for an hour when the likelihood of any of those things actually happening would be approximately zilch.

Still, that thought is the elephant in the room inside my head. The elephant that keeps me from seeing the gifts in front of me. The beast that blocks out the sunlight. And then I crawl into bed for hours because I feel as though I am literally freezing to death, and it's the only way I can get warm.

I think more and more about gender roles these days, and how I was so completely conditioned to wear the apron, how filled up my little head was with princesses and happy endings. How I would have done anything to save the idealized version of my nuclear family dancing like sugar plums inside my head, all the while waiting for happiness to drift down like the perfect snow in a snow globe. What I needed was a hammer to smash it all to bits, crack open the plastic, and let some honesty in.

I know all of that. I'm just having trouble feeling it. So on this the darkest day of the year, I will keep turning, turning, turning toward the light.


Ms. Moon said...

This is how we grow. We acknowledge what we feel. We learn. We struggle. We mourn. We cope. We go on, hopefully having learned something about ourselves which will help in the future.
All of it is part of it.
Stay warm, sweet woman.

Elizabeth said...

And the day will be longer, more filled with light, even today. It will get better. Those girls of your are testament to your power as mother, as a woman -- to the FACT that you did more than your best. And then, YOU are not defined by your children OR your ex. Not at all. It's just difficult to find your edges, to find where you began and where you left off.

I'm sending you love and light.

Jules said...

Been there
done that
Still visit
more often than I like

Wrinkling Daily said...

I was feeling kind of stupid, having similar nonsensical thoughts about my ex and our fractured family, especially since I know,I KNOW, my life is so much better without him. I love how you can articulate what so many of us are feeling. Thank you.

Birdie said...

Don't run away from those thoughts. Instead, turn them around and examine them and keep asking why you feel this way. Take a magnifying glass out if you need too. A resolution will come.

And good god I am glad the shortest day of the year is behind us.

Puanani said...


stephanie said...

I heard someone on the radio say that Christmas is the one time of year when you are homesick even when you're home. I thought that pretty much summed it up.

Anonymous said...

In my opinion he still wants control and this is how he exerts it now. My ex is a pilot and he is all about control, even now he still tries.

As for the sadness over lost dreams, I think that is appropriate. I know it's not the same but for years after Katie was diagnosed I still dreamed of her being "normal", still wished for it, still mourned the loss. In time I came to love what I had, but it took time.

Sending hugs woman.