tHe haPPy grOUch

tHe haPPy grOUch

Tuesday, June 16, 2015



I saw that photo/phrase on Facebook yesterday. I thought it poignant, profound. 
I'm always asked (usually by the significant other of the moment)- Why do you write? And why do you disclose such personal information??? The caption above answers those questions perfectly. I honestly couldn't have said it better myself (I may be an above-average technical writer, but I'm admittedly no good at creative prose). 

And so, on with it. Hopefully, without offending anyone. 

I am in the midst of a personal dilemma. Wait... when am I NOT in the midst of a personal dilemma?? Jeezus, there's ALWAYS something.. I should write a friggin book... Anyway, I digress.. 

I am in the throws of this new romance. I say "new", because by relationship standards, it's still new, at only 4 months old. It's still in its infancy... (I love it's vs its.. the one time you don't use an apostrophe to indicate a possessive.. anyway..). What was I saying? Oh, right, the new relationship...
  
It's still in its infancy. It's still fun, and loving, and fresh, and quite consuming. And yet, it's also about at that mark when I start to look at it from a different perspective- the "where can this go" mark, the "what's next" phase... I know, I know.. Many of you would say I shouldn't be analyzing it this early on, I should just be able to "go with the flow", etc, etc... Well, that's just not how I'm wired. I am a "date with a purpose" kind of gal. It doesn't matter if it's fun, or that it passes the time, or that it fills a void, or that it brings me pleasure for the time being. At some point, fairly early on, it must show possibility of a purpose. And if there is no purpose, no potential, then it is probably a waste of time, energy, and emotion, for all parties involved, and should be severed, as to avoid even more discomfort later on. 
And, in this instance, this relationship doesn't seem to have the potential to be anything more than it is right now. "It doesn't seem to" probably wasn't completely accurate... It truly doesn't/won't proceed to the "what's next" phase. And it has been discussed, and (mostly) agreed upon, and understood between the two of us.
Sigh.
I won't go into detail, because that would just be too much disclosure. But believe me when I say, there are some very real and significant (and inflexible, fixed, unchangeable) reasons as to why.  And so we carry on... Half the week spent together, enjoying one another, quite enraptured, wishing we had more time... Trying not to think about the "issues", trying not to think about it possibly (likely?) being only temporary. And then half the week spent apart, missing one another (sometimes to the point of misery), living our lives, going about our business, our children, jobs, lifestyles, etc, with daily texts and the occasional phone-call. 
And so I continue compromising my principals, going against what is logical, and quite possibly the "right thing" to do.  Because I am crazy about him.  Because in four short months, he has become a huge part of my life, even though only part-time. He's filled a space in my heart, grown there like some persistent pretty little flower that is rooted too deep (or deeply, either can be a proper adverb in this instance) to weed. Filled a dark empty spot with something new and bright and beautiful.
Sigh... 
So, what the hell to do?!?! "Go with the flow?" Continue on, enjoy it, assuming that this will be enough to sustain for us both? Or let it go, before more time and emotion is invested, and allow us each the opportunity to find "more" from a relationship, from life.
Conundrum.
At this point, my coffee and blogging was interrupted by the desperate pleas of my 13 year old son... Emergency, emergency! It's the last day of school and he had forgotten to bring the giant candy bar he bought for his favorite teacher. And since I needed to go to the town office to register my Jetta anyway, I rode in on my giant green monster (mom's excursion), and saved the day. 
I then proceeded to register my new (transmission-troublesome) Jetta, where I watched three registrations get processed to my one. Evidently I got the new girl. I had not had enough coffee for this, and so my time spent there was quite painful.
And now I'm back at my desk, fresh cup of coffee in hand, wondering... "where was I?"...Oh, right, the relationship stuff...
I feel like I've written enough for today. I don't know what else to say. It's difficult to write about, think about, look it in the face and see the reality of it. But perhaps that's exactly why I am writing of it.
Sigh.

One last very relevant thing, though... Throw another person into the mix, one who I planned on spending forever with, and also love very much, who wants a reconciliation, and the plot thickens to the point of excruciating insanity.

I've been in a very similar position to this, in the fall/winter of 2011...
In one blog I wrote...
Imagine for a second, that you had to willingly sever one of your own limbs. An arm, maybe a leg. Just cut it off. Lose it forever. No one could save you the discomfort of choice or the internal struggle and cut it off for you.  You had choose a limb, and you must sever it. There’s nothing wrong with that limb. It’s not diseased or infected. But you have to do it.
I can function without that limb. I know that I can. But it doesn’t ease the pain of severing it. I just want to be able to move on now, somewhat handicapped, and find some form of happiness.
I remember saying back then that it was one of the most painful positions I'd ever been in, and how I hoped to NEVER again experience it.
Well played, Universe, well played. Screw you. 

Friday, June 5, 2015

I should have learned by now to not write while I'm in the midst of a mood swing, be it pleasant or otherwise. The other day when I wrote, I was on a high of sorts. Everything seemed at least fairly right with the world. This evening, the opposite seems to be the case.
And I should know better than to write now, as I should have known better then.
But I don't know better.

I'll start by saying- I know it could be worse...

A friend of mine shot himself this week. He was a regular at The Brook. He was my age. He used to come in quite often. I still have pictures of him and Sue (my friend, and the old cook) on my phone. He was fun, crazy, cute, sweet. He was always making us laugh. His smile was infectious. And yet, he was also somehow just a little bit lost. PTSD, failed relationships, life in general... Him and I used to swap relationship horror stories; he was so easy to talk to.
I just saw him last Friday. I was so glad to see him, it had been a little while since he had been in. We talked for a bit, caught up, joked around. But, he still had that far away look in his eyes.
And yesterday at work, someone was throwing the name around, saying that someone by that name had shot themselves. And I said aloud- No, it wasn't him, it wasn't our Matt. And then I left work, and didn't think of it again.
Sara (my cook) told me this morning.
Like everyone else, I'm still in shock.

And so, I know, it could be worse.

I bought a VW Jetta, knowing it may need tranny work. Turns out, it does. Although I was prepared to spend the money in order to get it going, it still feels like I rolled the dice and shouldn't have. Somewhere right now my Dad is telling me- I told you so (with additional colorful phrases).
And Mom's excursion that I'm driving until I can get the Jetta registered and on the road, as it turns out, is a death trap. Two ball joints that are evidently so bad that they're going to break at any moment. I said- What's the big deal? The answer- Um, you know, those are the things that keep your tires on straight. The shop told me to take it home and park it.
But, I still need to get around, and so I'm still driving it. Hey, at least it's a giant tank, so I'll survive when it drives me off the road.

The band is defunct.
And I was supposed to play at my (other) favorite bar tonight and tomorrow night. The old Bucksport stomping ground. I was so looking forward to that.
After we parted ways with the lead guitarist, and then picking up a potential replacement, our rhythm player got done too because of a work conflict. And I am not interested in starting from scratch all over again. Already this feels like too much work. This is why I "retired" from music so long ago. It became more work than it was worth. Bitter Grace- the band that never was.
How very ironic, considering it was the catalyst to the end of my marriage.
But, was it for a reason? Oh, who fucking knows. The funk I'm in tonight is so thick that I'm having a hard time finding reason for anything.

Relationships are complicated. There's always something making it so. There's, always, something. Children, schedules, work, friends, obligations, distance.. characteristics, direction, fundamentals, differences...
I want things to work seamlessly. I don't like doubt or the unknown. I don't want complications. I want that easy button from the Staples commercials.
It's probably no coincidence that I'm a third time divorcee.

I was so excited to have the house to myself this weekend. Mom is in Portland at my sister's. Dogs are gone too. Come home, get dinner, put on pajamas, watch tv, be lazy...
It's overrated. Turns out alone time is just that- alone.

This is definitely not where I thought I'd be at this point in my life.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

If life were only as easy as my last blog made it sound. 
Sigh. 

Tuesday, June 2, 2015


It's been just under a month since I've written. Evidently I'm back to the trend of going weeks between blogs. It's certainly not for lack of fodder; there's ALWAYS interesting things/happenings to write about. It's just whether or not to write about them...

Let's begin.
(And this has taken me a half day to write, so it's going to be lengthy. Get comfortable.)

Things are, in general, ok around here. I wouldn't go so far as to say "life is good", but I'll call it tolerable. :) Dawson and I are in good health, we have a roof over our heads, we eat well, we have the necessities and some trivial extras. Life is, tolerable. :)

Living with Mom is a challenge at times, but for the most part we coexist successfully. I am particular about how things are around here, and she's used to that after living with father. In fact, there are often times she says to Dawson- Dzazdu is still with us... in your mother!
Although it is monetarily comfortable here, I still long for my "own place". I constantly reevaluate my financial situation, and try to figure out a way I could make it work. I always come up with the same answer... With several more shifts at work, or with a second (and possibly third job), I could do it. And so, what to do... Sacrifice my sanity, my time with Dawson, my relationship, my time for me.. in order for four walls of my own?
What to do, what to do...

Dawson has been adjusting well to the changes we've been through. He doesn't mind living with mom at all, he adores her. And he is happy being back in Glenburn. He seems to be coping a little better now with the "loss" of his step-father. He still talks about him. He still misses the things they'd do together. Even though there are times when he's still sad, he at least seems to be accepting things now. That being said, he would still jump at the chance to go golfing with him, or to the gym... Sad. 

I miss having Logan around, to my surprise. Her living at home was a constant point of contention for my ex-husband and I. Yes, it was stressful, and I was relieved to see her venture out on her own. But I do miss her so. She at least does visit here once a week. I mean, really, she needs to do laundry and eat a home-cooked meal. :) I worry about her constantly; she will always be my baby. But she is a little adult now. A beautiful, smart, driven young woman. It's so strange.

A brief mention about my job, simply because I am so happy where I am. It took a long time for me to feel settled there. And I may not be the youngest, prettiest, or favorite bartender there, but I am welcomed, at home, and I am happy. I am proud, and dedicated. And, I'm the boss. That's kinda cool too. ;)

Speaking of jobs... I have been thinking about the future (quite a lot, in many different aspects)... But specifically, job related. I can't tend bar forever.  So.. what do I do? I need to seriously consider what I will be doing to sustain for the rest of my working years. Lots of college credits, but no degrees. A little experience in a lot of different things, but not enough in one particular field to be generously employable. Should I go back to school? But how?? I barely passed the basic mathematics courses, and couldn't even finish Algebra 1. Numbers and letters stand in the way of obtaining a degree for me, it's just impossible. And, even if I could, for what? I have no idea what I would be happy doing for years. Nothing interests me enough. I would be happy tending bar for years, but that's not realistic. No one wants to look at (or employ) a 65 year old bartender. What the hell am I going to do??
I don't know what I want to be when I grow up. Sigh.

Lately, I yearn to be on the water. Not necessarily in a boat, I'm more of an "on the shore" kinda gal. I want to go stay on the water somewhere for a while. Or even better, live there. By a river, or a pond, or a lake, or the ocean. I care not the size of the water, so much as the essence of it.  Somewhere I can wake up every day and have my coffee while staring it, smelling it, listening to it, letting it bring me the peace and tranquility I so desperately and constantly seek.
Maybe that should be my future goal.

Speaking of the future...
This past weekend marked the finality of my divorce. On May 30th, the thirty-day appeals period expired, and I officially became a third-time divorcee. My third tour. A third star general. The third time, as it turns out, is not a charm.
And I jest, but it's all a facade.

There are so many things wrong with this, I don't even know where to begin.
Besides all the specifics associated with this last marriage (and there are layers upon layers of them...), the idea of being a divorcee, again, is quite upsetting, frustrating, unsettling. What have I done wrong all these times? Why do I have this cycle, this history? Am I THAT bad at relationships? Sigh.
This last one was supposed to be forever. The third time is a charm; it really was supposed to be. And quite often, it felt that would be true. My ex-husband and I were the closest to happiness, contentment, "true love" (if you will), I had ever felt. And yet, it was also a terrible, unhealthy, emotional roller coaster. So many times I should have walked away, and didn't. Or more appropriately, so many times he walked away, and I should have let him stay gone, and didn't. Until this last time, when we both kind of mutually walked away from it at the same time. It's true that perhaps this time around, it was more me than him. I threw in the towel first, gave up easier, lost the will to continue trying. That's perhaps the difference this time, from all the other times we should have let it go.
Now, that's not to say that I've been firm in my resolve through it all. Admittedly, I've had my weak moments. Responding to his emails, speaking with him on the phone, meeting him to talk... And there were times these last few months when I've had second thoughts. The good times, the fond memories, the connection we (intermittently) had, have all tempted me to reconsider.
These last few months have been very, very difficult. Painful. Although it certainly hasn't appeared that way, has it? I've been very public about my new relationship, and very private about my struggle. Why wouldn't I be? I was confused, sad, angry, elated and ecstatic, all at the same time. And on top of that, I was ashamed for feeling all of these things. Ashamed of being so seemingly happy in my new relationship, ashamed of the feelings I had developed for someone new, so soon. Ashamed for feeling so sad and conflicted about my divorce, ashamed of reconsidering. Ashamed of feeling lonely, codependent. Ashamed of not being happy by myself, or having the strength to be alone, as everyone said I should be.
Ashamed of being so... human.
But as it turns out, I am human.

So what have I learned from all this? Where do I stand now? What does my future hold? I'm still not quite sure. I don't have any firm answers. And I sincerely wish I did. The "not knowing" is one of the things in life that I have a terribly difficult time coping with. I'm not a "wait and see" or "go with the flow" kind of person. I need to know the answers, have to know them, or I go crazy, quite literally. Not knowing is a constant source of anxiety.

What I do know, is...
It's ok to be sad and angry and lonely. I lost something (someone) that was a huge part of my life. It's ok to miss the wonderful things that were associated with that.  I lost love, no matter how gray it was at times.
And just because others are more independent, and believe in taking time for oneself, and being alone, and all that other (sarcastic tone) "worldly advice", it's ok if I'm not that.  It's okay to want to be partnered. And someday, I will be again.

It's ok to be human. 

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go tend to my homemade spaghetti sauce.
Me? Cooking? Gasp.
Yes, folks, miracles are possible.