I know, that’s quite a pessimistic statement, or self-defeatist. But, you know what? It’s true. We have room for such compassion, creativity, and love. What do we decide to fill that room with? Addiction, gluttony, and selfishness.
Last weekend, I started quantifiable research on divorced professional women and asking about their wedding traditions, focusing on their choice of last name. Knowing what you already know about my experience observing the disintegration of my sister’s marriage and her infidelity, you can imagine this has not been easy research. I went back to my old stomping grounds, a place of fond memories and current mixed emotions. My friends were happy to see me, and I was happy to be there.
Now for the fun part. I have 1 ex that I still keep in contact, Erik. He’s a wonderful guy, quiet and reserved, but has proven himself (via actions, not words) to be trustworthy and upstanding. I’d trust him with just about anything of mine, because even if he’s mad at me, he would never hurt me for spite. We met when I was 21, and a drunk. We’ve always come together for comfort, and I think I’m one of the only women he’s trusted since his then-girlfriend moved him halfway across the country, just to dump him a few months later. While this has been 10 years ago, I imagine it still hurts him. Having guy friends to drink beer and grill with can only soothe a wound so much. Anyways, I had mentioned the falling out with my sister, and he never asked what had happened. When I asked if he cared to ask, he said he didn’t want to know. That part stung, but he followed up with, “It’d probably just make me really mad.” Cop out or taking my side? Who knows. Later that night, we were fixing my computer and I asked if I could stay, and he offered a spare bedroom, and joked about sleeping on the floor. When I asked why, he quietly said, “We have such a history…”
That cut deep. I wasn’t wanted by the one person who had always wanted me before. I knew one day we would have to move on, but I didn’t want it to be now. It couldn’t be now, not when I needed him the most. Some guy thought my married, mother of 4 sister was a better option than me. I’ve been passed over and picked over by individuals, given up on. Not now, and not by the one guy whom had shown such kindness and compassion to me before, especially when I was a drunk and didn’t “deserve” it. This time, I’m cleaned up. I’m trying to work through a messy situation, but I’m doing life so much better than before. I didn’t want sex; I just wanted to be intimate, to feel wanted. Realistically, I know I’m not being punished for anything in the past, but now I feel as if we served our sentence, and are out on parole. I got out of that house at record speeds, and now we only talk of computers and games. I’ve lost a good friend.
Loving someone and them not loving you back is a bit like waiting for your ship to come in at the airport. I’ll have to cry a little, and eat enough ice cream to barely escape a diabetic coma. It’s going to be painful, and it’s going to suck royal donkey balls. I’m going to have to take myself out to dinner and movie, to self-soothe like a child would. However, I have to know that I’ll be okay on my own, more so now than before. If family is a choice that one makes every day, then so is friendship with yourself and others. If he doesn’t want to be a friend, I cannot force some resemblance of a relationship to materialize. I can choose to be an asshole, or I can choose to be compassionate and loving.
And just because I can, here’s my review of the Audiobook I listened to on the road to my old stomping grounds.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I listened to the Audiobook, read by Tom Hiddleston (Loki in “Avengers” and “Thor”). I’ve been impressed with his impersonations and mimicry in interviews. He did a wonderful job on the short stories of Ian Flemming, and since he’s playing Dr. Robert Laing in “High-Rise”, I thought his perspective and experience filming would make for an interesting interpretation of the main characters. Yeah… it was interesting alright.
I like Audio books for longer road trips. After I finished this book, I turned to the invisible person in the passenger seat next to me and said, louder than my usual speaking volume, “What the absolute fuck.” Hiddleston’s narration took a backseat to the story. This story has made me immeasurably grateful for growing up on a farm away from people. This story describes what a complete and total breakdown of social structure and any human progress would look like in an urban setting. Women turned into doormats (why was there little to no resistance?) and men become neanderthals, beating and dragging the women back to their caves. Where were people getting their money for food at the beginning of the breakdown? Why weren’t the police called? Why weren’t people leaving to do their jobs? Why weren’t people coming to visit and “rescuing” the individuals who had become feral? It was an interesting story, written with expert hands by Ballard, and delivered wonderfully by Hiddleston.
That being said, I’m still really freaking grateful for growing up on a farm with animals, and little contact with humans.