Thursday, February 18, 2010

A Post From A Month Ago: Last Night Was A Doozy

I wrote this last month after a particularly shite evening. I am posting it now, because a bit of time has passed and I have been mulling over the traits of various women in my family and in my life. How we each approach and deal with hardships and bad news. This is most recently felt and observed because my grandmother passed away and I am seeing the reactions and fallout. I have blogged about her before here. Being strong and being sad and letting tears fall or not fall is certainly on my mind. So, here is what I wrote for Last Night Was A Doozy:

And it is all Grand Torino's fault.

So I sometimes make a pact with myself not to cry about things for certain amount of time. Once in college I said three months with no tears. Four dry months went by. Recently I made an agreement to be very, very, very strong and to not give in to my tears too often, even as my heart broke and my marriage crumbled. Movies and happy tears have been excused from this, but the real tears... the drops that don't just mist, but fall; the swollen eyes and blotchy-chest tears I refused to let out. Maybe a stray one spilled for the briefest of moments or that one time I drank too much and let loose the existential angst waterworks, but day to day I. Do. Not. Cry.

It has been important to me to demonstrate how in control I am. When everything around me swirls in confusing, angry patterns I can have say over my reaction. Years ago the control manifested in the ways I have mentioned before. The self-abuse was key and allowed me to control simple things, even if it ended up hurting quite badly. But now that I treat myself nicely and so often am found smiling, I chose to put the reins on my tears.

I am getting a divorce and until tonight I have not truly cried real, big, painful, unlimited tears. Even now they pool in my eyes and I swipe them away. Annoyed. Sad. Soft underbelly bullshit.

Someone asked me tonight if moving out of AM and my shared home is going to be an emotional thing for me and I said "no, not at all. I closed my heart off long ago and I am ready to leave." I really believed myself when I first said it, but now a few hours later... I am taking on the weight of what it means.

Five minutes ago I was standing in my bathroom, tears streaming saying over and over "You failed. You failed at marriage, Anna. You are a failure." I let myself feel it very deeply and for the smallest glimpse of time I thought of self-injury. It is still there, after all this work and time. Ten seconds later I was back to pep-talk mode and believing that yes, I can do this and yes, it will be okay, etc.

It all started with Clint Eastwood and the movie "Grand Torino". I watched it tonight in bed with the covers up to my armpits and Kiki Dee attempting to snuggle my head. I misted over for the movie, but it triggered the tears that only real life knows and can summon. The cute white cat that every night tries to fall asleep on my pillow and next to my face will no longer be in my life. The boxes that have to be packed loom before me. The man I thought I was going to be with forever, snores in the back room as he has for months on end now, as I lay alone. Everything is changing. Nothing is as I thought it would be. And FUCK, IT HURTS.

So I cried. Sober, ocean filling tears. I let them be accurate and I let go of the pretend control I have over the emotions of something this sad. It deserves tears. I don't want to cry much more (though I am sure I will at some point) and think I might have purged something very deep in me so that perhaps the next time I cry it will be less. But I don't really know.
I know I am not a failure. I realize I am the best version of me I've ever known to date. I also know that honoring the pain and heartbreak of this decision is not weak or a loss of control. It just makes my eyes hurt and my lids to be awfully puffy the next day. That I can handle.

1 comment:

LMS said...

First and foremost, never sell yourself short.

You are far better than that.

Everyone has a failed marriage; they're just to stupid to wake up to the fact that things are not working out as they were told. You know, 2.4 children, the slobbery, happy-go-lucky Golden Retriever, the white picket fence, etc; which, as we all know is a steaming pile of Bu%$#t.

Fortunately, you did.

The important thing to realise is that you did nothing wrong. And, more importantly, did you learn something from it?

You've made a descison, now it's time to use it. I know it sounds like one of those awful self-help doctrines, but, to continue with the clich├ęs, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

So, enough preaching from the local curmudgeon. BIG SMOOCHES, from those of us back East. And keep in touch.....


We,all got yer back.