recent soundtrack in my car:
Bahai Black, Ritual Beating System (happier than it sounds, but the title fits my mood)
Liz Phair, Exile in Guyville
Eminem, The Eminem Show
i've been cranky lately. true, that's not exactly news; on any given day, there's probably at least one thing that i'm cranky about. but this is a little more than that. i'm cranky in a Big Bad Way.
see, i don't like confrontation. i don't like it when i trust people, only to get burned. i don't like letting people into my life, just to have them take advantage of the access.
there have been some red flags going off for me lately, and they've gotten me to thinking about things i'd rather let lie. and that, my friends, is Bad.
it's about time i finally explained Strawberry Boy. he's been sitting, quietly, at the bottom of my cast list for some time. he was a major part of my life for some time, and now he's not. *deep sigh* i had an affair with him when i was married. and he was married. let me just say this about that: it was a learning experience, in many senses. it's a shame that some of the most important lessons we learn involve pain, but there you have it.
*sigh* so why did i have an affair? it seemed like a good idea at the time, as so many things do. there was the whiff of danger and secrecy, that tang of illicitness. i got to be the Bad Girl, and be rewarded for it (or so it seemed at the time). and i was desperately unhappy. (to quote a friend, desperation is never a pretty dress.) i used the affair as an escape hatch, to avoid facing the things that truly needed to be faced. the details aren't all that interesting. in the end, it all went bad, deeply bad and sour.
i did eventually face up to the fact that i was married to the wrong person for the wrong reasons, and it was killing me. you think i exaggerate? i developed a near ulcer, IBS, and had a cerebral 'event' - a bleed in my brain. it could have happened at any time, but i don't think the stress helped. i lost my short term memory and sense of smell for nearly a year because of the bleed. i drank far too much, trying to ignore things. i started smoking again. i did things that, in retrospect, scare me. and i started losing touch with friends and family. there is no life in that.
i finally found the courage to move out, and force my passive aggressive fat fucknut of a husband to file for divorce. i patched up friendships, and got into therapy. i started writing. i looked for new hobbies. i got an apartment, and lived on my own for the first time in my life. i decided never to be anyone's escape hatch, or use one again. i worked out things with my family, to the extent that i could. i learned, am still learning, to love myself.
oh, the red flag? the affair started to head south, i think, when Strawberry Boy said those dangerous three words. we were holding each other, and he whispered them to me. i sat there, holding my breath, wanting them to be true, knowing they weren't, scared that he might mean them. and so the spiral began. i heard those words again recently. this time, i didn't hold my breath. i walked away, literally.
since i moved, since Strawberry Boy left my life, i've been involved a few times. one of them, i thought, was The One. we were honest, open, caring, and he said he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. notice - i am still single. *shakes head* did he mean what he said? no doubt he did at the time. but, as i've since discovered, he's still learning a lot about himself, figuring out the lessons, and i was an object lesson along the way. that one hurt. that one... i haven't felt physical pain like that, ever. i'm still nursing the wounds from that one.
and after living in a blissfully Fritz-free zone for years, the exhusband came back to ask me for an annullment. no, neither of us is Catholic. but his new finance¸ is. and, as he explained to me over the phone, 'if we don't get married in the Church in Ireland, she'll be thrown in jail.' blatant, big, steaming pile of happy horseshit, that is. he triggered several hot buttons with that one. i have no love for the Catholic Corporation. i don't disagree with the belief, mind you. but the human-defined corporation that enforces the rules? no love lost here. hot button #2 - lying. if you know me at all, you know why. and you know better than to ever lie to me.
all of this has contributed to me being in a generally foul mood lately. the radar is up, cranked up to 11. i've doled out a few smackdowns. i've stepped back to look at boundaries and the value of friendships. and i struggle, each morning, to want to trust. it would be a crying shame if i lost that ability. as we get older (okay, as *i* get older), i put more and more value into the friendships that are real, the people i can let into my life and trust. i don't want to be bitter and reclusive. and i'm mad that this is where i am emotionally right now.
do me a favor? drop me a line, sign the guestbook, tell me something funny, tell me to snap out of this, point me at something good to read, send me virtual hugs, tell me your favorite ice cream flavor or where you want to go on vacation? it would really help. and i promise to do the same for you when you need it.