I’ve had a few empowering experiences in the past few days that cause me to have renewed trust in the unfolding of life. They are both little things, but it is often the little things in life that are the most awe-inspiring to me.
The first one happened last night: Sami’s dad came with me to the school to pick him up for their visitation. He’ll be starting Friday night overnights with him on February 7, picking him up directly from school, and we thought it would be good for Sami to see him at school at least once before then.
When I saw him, he had this very cool Fendi glasses on, and I felt moved to compliment him on them.
“Fendi, huh? That’s hot,” were the words that flew out of my mouth.
He smiled, and kind of nervously mumbled something about his wife knowing someone at the mall who gave him a big discount.
“Cool,” I said.
As we walked out of the building, he remarked on my high heels. “Guess your back is all better, huh? You’re wearing heels.”
“It is, thanks for asking,” I said. “Guess we both have changed — you’re wearing Fendi glasses, and I’m wearing heels.”
It was a very superficial exchange, but the energy around it was good.
Just a few days before, I had told him about enrolling Sami in summer camp, and he said that he didn’t have the money to pay for anything beyond child support right now. I didn’t harp, didn’t point out that the divorce agreement says that he is supposed to pay half of the cost of his education, camps, etc. He’s paying pretty generous child support, so I just chose to let it go.
When he dropped Sami off last night, he pulled out half the money for the camp, in cash, and gave it to me.
It just got me to thinking about how if I am easygoing and kind, that is what I tend to get back in return. Instant karma, baby.
Bit by bit, I feel that the energy between us is shifting. I’m not imagining that there won’t be tough moments, but for now, my stomach has ceased to turn over in dread each time I need to interact with him. That is a good thing.
The second little experience: today was the first big snow of the year (and the winter) here in Washington, DC. By the time I got Sami home from school, there was a thick layer of snow on my driveway, and being that it is on a slight incline, the car kept sliding down. I knew that I needed to get my car under the carport so I wouldn’t have to deal with scraping it clean in the morning (we’ve already got enough to do in the morning!) so I got Sami inside, got him set up with his favorite floor puzzles, and trudged out to clear the snow from the driveway.
Mind you, when H and I were newly separated, it was a major experience to even take the garbage out by myself, I had come to rely on him so heavily to do the “guy things.”
And tonight, here I was shoveling snow from the driveway, nervously darting back in the house every few minutes to make sure that Sami was not screaming for me, or getting into the kinds of mischief he is wont to get into when my back is turned for too long. He was fine, sitting on the floor concentrating on his puzzles. Once my task was achieved, I sprinkled the driveway and the stairs with salt, and easily drove my car under the carport. Mission accomplished.
This is not to say that my head was not buzzing with thoughts of lack. The thoughts that always come up, the lies that I like to tell myself but believe less and less “I can’t do this alone. I can’t stand it. I can’t do this.” So not true. I am doing it. I have done it. I will do it.
Each experience like this strips away the little girl who needed a man to take care of business.
Mama’s handling her business, thank you very much.
Yet still, there is the part of me that blindly reaches out for another. She persists with vigor. It’s the part of me that feels like I am somehow less valuable, less worthy, for not having a lover. My gay friend J, who stayed with us over the inauguration, told me that he was “shocked” that I didn’t have a lover, and assured me that if he wasn’t gay he would totally marry me.
I thanked him and told him that I feel like “man-repellent,” what with the two experiences I had recently with men I really fell for: MoTH and MTM. The poofage. I can’t seem to attract any kind of male companionship into my life, not even a friend. I have male friends, but astonishingly, not one of them lives in DC.
Lately I am so discouraged with dating, I have almost given up on finding a real relationship. Maybe that’s just it: I need to surrender and let go of this mad desire to be in a romantic partnership.
I’m at the point where I’m actually ready to try the FWB thing, especially now that I will have one overnight a week to myself. I’ve put out some feelers online, and have had to weed through a lot of ridiculousness, but there are a few potential prospects. I am supposed to meet one of them for lunch on Thursday.
This will be a real experiment for me. I’ve never tried an NSA kind of relationship. I’m not even sure that I can do it. Can I actually sleep with someone and not get attached? Is it even possible to have good sex with someone you don’t truly love? I suppose I am putting the cart before the horse here, as nothing is even close to happening yet. Part of me is so resigned, so defeated, that I will probably repel these prospects too, even for a NSA fling.
This is where I’m at tonight — caught in a weird nether-world between empowerment when it comes to co-parenting and managing a household on my own, and utter disillusionment when it comes to the relationships and that whole achingly messy love thing. I guess I’ll just hold onto my fragile trust in life’s unfolding, and keep letting myself fall into the groundlessness.
Welcome to this blog - my chronicle of the illuminating, character-building path of single parenthood. I'm making this up as I go along. My life is my practice, and my five year-old son is my greatest teacher.