A week and a half into our separation, and I’m just now beginning to struggle with finding my feet. It’s easy to fall back on routine and compartmentalizing my emotions, but these habits keep me from facing things and growing.
My emotional struggles show themselves through my writing. When I’m unable to write or don’t feel motivation…when it pours from my fingers and won’t let me sleep…when it’s full of lust or sadness.
My writing is my litmus test and my cure. And from my measure, right now, I need a week long writing retreat. I can’t do that quite yet, because my life won’t allow it. But winter break is right around the corner, and that’s as good a time as any.
For now, just know that writing a sentence or two of fiction or poetry is painful for me. It’s not coming out like it should, and even when I force myself, I walk away from the page feeling tongue-tied and locked away, like the writer in me has been gagged and bound in the pit of my stomach. It’s definitely indicative of my situation.
Finding my voice again is how I’ll find my feet. It’s also how I’ll find my mojo in life…my passion…and my erotic edge, because that’s been gone awhile.
Yesterday, when I looked in the mirror before I left for work, I liked what I saw. It’s been awhile since that happened…not only that I stopped and really looked, but that I considered my feelings about it…and that I decided I liked it. I’m not sure where I let myself get to, but I’m finding out that I’ve buried myself somewhere and am having trouble figuring out where that was and how I can dig myself up again.
It’s a simple question, really, but I’m struggling with it – What brings me joy? What makes me happy? And the fact that I’m finding it difficult to answer that says a lot.
I lost myself somewhere along the way. Let myself get caught up in the day-to-day to-do lists and lost track of fun. It’s been a long time since I cut loose and just had fun.
How did that happen? How did I let that happen?
Because it makes everything make sense…why I’m tired, overwhelmed, resentful, grumpy, and why I don’t feel like fucking…anyone…ever.
So, that’s where it is right now…my ONE thing. It’s not health or saving money or finding a new career. It’s having fun.
Something I’ve been doing is taking note of observations that come to mind now that Mr. D has moved out. I’m not judging them, I’m simply taking note and letting them be. I figure as I track them, the story will emerge. Here are the first ten from my ongoing list, in the order that they rose to the surface:
- Mr. D has been ancillary for a long time. I hardly notice his footprint gone, the little piles of his clutter…the shelf on his side of the bed…his side of the bathroom counter. It makes it apparent that he has been sitting on the sidelines just existing in this life. I’m not sure if that means I have shoved him into that corner or if he has simply removed himself on his own. Maybe it’s a bit of both.
- His presence, while often bringing me comfort, hasn’t brought me joy for some time. There has been no real romance…no fun…no deep connection…no erotic pulse.
- We are both tired of being square pegs shoved into each other’s round holes (that sounds much dirtier than intended, btw).
- There is less work, stress, and negativity with him out of the house.
- I miss our son when he stays at his dad’s. So far, that is the hardest part.
- Not having to clean and do laundry every night makes me feel less resentful. I only cook a few nights and it makes enough food for the week. I do laundry one or two days. I tidy a bit, and then have hours to relax, write, read, or watch whatever shows or movies I want. I thought it would be more stressful, with more responsibility landing in my lap, but it’s actually less so, and I have far less on my to-do list. The only thing I’m not doing is the checkbook, and that’s only one more responsibility. Living on my own is doable and easier.
- I go to bed early and sleep better with no one making noise in the other room, staying up half the night because he doesn’t want to come to bed, coming in late and snoring because he’s been drinking.
- My life is so busy there has been no space for him…I have busied myself right out of being in love. I cut him out long before he cut himself out.
- I’ve lost 5 pounds.
- I miss him. And I love him. And maybe now that I’m through the initial reaction of him being gone, I can begin to truly figure out how (and if) he can fit back into our life.
I realize that if Mr. D were to see this list (which I suppose is certainly possible even though he recently admitted that he has not visited my blog in a long time) he may have some reason to feel hurt by these observations. That is not my intent. However, my honest revelations are an important part of the process, I think. Part of what we are doing here is breathing, taking stock, and giving ourselves time to think, heal, and figure out how to go about fixing things. We can’t do that if we haven’t given ourselves space to celebrate the death of what doesn’t work…honestly investigating the things that make us happy or unhappy with or without each other.
Like I said…observing without judgement or much reflection here. Just letting the experience sway me back and forth, wash over me, and seep into my skin and bones.
I am drinking in, softening, rather than digging, forcing, bending, or demanding to understand. It’s a new strategy for me.
“Anything dead coming back to life hurts.”
– Toni Morrison
I think of it like having sat on my feet for too long…and when I stand, the numbness is soft and woozy, but then the pain blossoms like fire. That last several years, I’ve been sitting on my feet…these past two weeks, it was soft and woozy, and just now, the pain is licking the horizon, ready to slip in and be dealt with.
Note: As has been said in other posts, I write to clear my brain, not to elicit sympathy. I know that it can be hard to know what to say in response to someone else’s shitty circumstances or pain, and I do not expect readers to do this. I also write because my experiences may help others with their own.