I did a lot of packing today. Possibly the worst experience I’ve ever had. Who knows – maybe I’m lucky to say that packing up my new apartment, the home I share with my now ex-boyfriend, is the worst thing that’s ever happened to me. Heck, I’m not in Darfur. My children have not been sent to Iraq. Everyone I know is the picture of health. So I know how lucky I am.
After a full day, Brooklyn was the next stop. I am in dogsitting mode – complete with The Italian Job, sushi, with Marvin curled at my feet. Is it ironic that I am here while my friend is on her way to a skiing trip to Jackson Hole with her husband, when I myself was to leave for an almost identical trip on Saturday? Well, I can think of a few other words besides ‘ironic.’
For the first time in my life, I bought a half bottle of wine. Swallowing all pride…and class…I thought it wiser. Then the cashier called me ‘ma’am,’ and I immediately regretted my decision.
I understand that all of this happening to me is beyond my control…and I have no choice but to surrender to it and allow it to play out. But I am a control freak, and I’m finding it hard to just be.
These past few weeks, I’ve learned so much. I’ve learned that my aforementioned “most important relationship of my life” is with those that have stood by me, not the ones that walk away. That, whilst being in love with my ex, I was also incredibly jealous of the life he led, the trips he had been on, the experiences he had. I want to go to school in France for a semester. Backpack Australia and New Zealand? Sign me up. Ski with family at Christmas, go on several annual golf trips with schoolmates…a charmed life indeed. Hearing the stories, I always wondered where he and I would go together, do together…that he hadn’t already done. I felt my life inadequate…and I’m ashamed of that reaction.
Maybe that’s to be one of my takeaways from this experience. To start, at 31, living that life…the one with which I was enamored. Of course there are plenty of barriers trying to impede…but you only live once…and I need to start crossing things off my list. Maybe that was his purpose in my life. That, and the whole learning to love someone with your whole heart crap.
When breakups happen in movies, the hero/heroine travels the world to sort their issues out. They go to Africa and volunteer, walk through Spain, buy a home in Tuscany. In real life, we go back to our cubicles. And life resumes all around us.
So I guess my next question is…what is the first thing I do…what is my Africa?