Sunday, November 30, 2008

Exhausted ramblings. But I'm here.

So, Foxie Doxie and I are back home. He's attached to my hip, and really? Really, that's just fine. I want to carry him around in my pocket. Except that he's too big. And he tends to squirm.

I have been rather authentic this weekend. Which is a nice way of saying I've been walking around crying and saying, "I'm just so saaaaad!"

And yes, I'm great fun at parties.

But I had a bit of an epiphany: I'm here.

I lost Mr. Wonderful. I lost his daughter The Ladybug. I lost the Geriatric Poodle. But I'm here. I am surviving. I'm here.

The Ex-boyfriend Formerly Known as Mr. Wonderful displayed traits that tell me he isn't the partner for me. I was a positive influence in The Ladybug's life while I was in her life. And the Geriatric Poodle is now finally at peace - he can see and hear and run and chase squirrels and pee on everything.

And I'm here.

So, fuck it. These things come in threes, so I've filled my quota of Shitty Stuff. And I'm still here, and if you want to ruin my life, you're going to have to try harder and also come back later. I gave at the office.

Also? I am feeling empowered because I have a new laptop. She is chocolate brown and I have named her Godiva. Obviously, the world is my oyster.

But oyster or no, I am also emotionally and physically exhausted from filling my Shit Quota. So, I'm still here, but for the time being, I'm still here ... in bed. But because I have a new laptop? I can do these things.

Friday, November 28, 2008

A different kind of Thanksgiving.

When we arrived at my parents' house Wednesday night, the Geriatric Poodle was agitated. And he no longer had control of his bladder.

When my mom cleaned up the third puddle, I looked at my folks and admitted, "My dog is dying."

Yes, honey. Yes, he is.

We stayed up late and talked through the entire situation. Ever since we rescued each other, I have been so focused on keeping the Geriatric Poodle alive. Lately, I have been sensing a shift in his health, his happiness, and the true goal here.

Even when I held him, he wasn't always comforted.

He wasn't eating. And he was doing this weird thing with the water dish - his complete lack of depth perception meant that even if I held the water dish right up to his mouth, he could sometimes be several inches from the surface of the water when he tried to lap it up.

I made a difficult decision. My mom e-mailed her friend who is the office manager at the vet's office. We had an appointment for 1:30 this afternoon.

Thanksgiving Day was bittersweet. I was so thankful to be with my parents and my brother, Poochie. The Geriatric Poodle ate turkey with homemade gravy on it. It was a privilege to be together, and to talk about what a great dog we had in the Geriatric Poodle.

He would hoist his leg up almost perpendicular to the ground when he peed.
In his younger days, he would have entire conversations with himself - you've never seen a dog as talkative and vocal.

And as horrible as the beginning of his life was, he was an amazingly trusting, affectionate dog who would melt into you when you held him.

Foxie Doxie and my parents' Shih Tzu Magic watched the Geriatric Poodle closely. They knew.

And I just cried and cried. I wanted to do right by this sweet little dog who has always done right by me. I feel like I've been crying all fall. I'm so tired of being sad. And the sadness is overwhelming.

Last night, I was tired, but I didn't want to go to bed, because if I did, it would be today, and today was our appointment.

But I did.

This morning, we sat with various puppies on various laps. The time flew by and was also forever. In a moment alone, I whispered to my sweet deaf baby that he was a good boy and that he had done a very good job. And now his work was done, and it was ok to go. And I loved him so much and was so thankful for him, and I would love him every single day forever. And thank you for being my dog. Thank you for loving me.

My entire family and Foxie Doxie went to the vet. They led us right into a large, yellow room with a blue ceiling that had paw-shaped clouds painted on it. The wonderful vet tech hugged me and assured me that this was the hardest choice, but the kindest choice. She explained it all. And she hugged me again. And I just cried and held my baby.

They took him in the back to get the line in his paw and we could hear him screaming. I came completely unglued. My mom covered my ears with her hands and I sobbed.

The tech came back in. They hadn't even touched him - he just didn't want them to hold him. My mom went back to comfort him, and then my mom, the vet and the Geriatric Poodle all came back.

We sat on the floor, and I held him in my lap, wrapped in a fleece blankie my mom made him. I smelled his hair and stroked his head. And then his head got heavy and he was gone.

My dog is dead.

I know that now he can see and hear and chase squirrels and smell and eat and pee on whatever his heart desires. I know he's running and he doesn't hurt.

But I do.

I am so sad. I'm so tired of being sad. But I'm also thankful. I'm so thankful for eight years with this wonderful, loving little guy. I'm glad that I could stop his suffering. I'm glad that my entire family was there, and I'm glad he planned it that way, because he was smart like that.

He was a very good dog. His name was Reggie.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

My dog is a turkey.

The Geriatric Poodle has stopped eating.

The holistic vet had him on canned pumpkin, ground hamburger, and a little dry fancypants dog food that cost a mere $24 for a seven-pound bag.

He has started turning his nose up at all of it.

I pulled out the big guns: tater tots.

Lil Fluff was into the tater tots for about a day and a half. And then? Forget it.

So then I got into green beans. He was excited about that ... for about 12 hours. The boy just doesn't want to eat.

So today, in the day-before-Thanksgiving rush, I battled the hoards of shoppers at the grocery store. I even had to wait for a parking spot. All this to buy ... a can of gravy.

Yes, I let an entire grocery store full of people think that I am the type of person who serves canned gravy on Thanksgiving.

But it was worth it. Geriatric Poodle ate all the vittles covered in gravy.

He's a smart dog. Maybe he's just messing with me and seeing what he needs to do before I make him a steak every night.

Or maybe he's stopped eating because he's getting ready to make his transition. And I have to respect that.

Although I just want to scream, "Just fucking eat, already!"

Which is actually a great theme for Thanksgiving. So, in that spirit - enjoy your families and enjoy your homemade or canned gravy. I'm thankful for you all.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Because I’m just so interesting.

Sweet Andi over at A Thousand Miles From the Place I Was Born tagged me for a meme. If you aren’t familiar with Andi, head on over and check out her blog. She’s a great writer and a kind soul. Plus, she’s a pediatric oncology nurse, and I am in awe of her.

Andi’s one flaw seems to be finding me interesting. And now you must all suffer!

So here are seven mildly weird and/or entertaining things about me that you probably don’t know. Unless you’re my mom. Hi mom.

  1. I was sick a lot as a kid. I got tonsillitis and/or bronchitis, like, every other day. In retrospect, this suited me just fine, as I was bored in school a lot.

  2. I hate mustard and pickles. I’m not a picky eater, but mustard and pickles? I cannot abide.

  3. I have freakishly long and thin fingers. My ring finger is a size four.

  4. I received an award at Corporate Behemoth yesterday. I was recognized “for outstanding vision, dedication & commitment to excellence.” Kindly genuflect in my presence and don’t dare make eye contact. I’m a pretty big deal.

  5. I was voted “Most involved” in my high school class. It took me several years to realize that this actually means “chill out and give it a rest already.” Sadly, I won the same accolade in my college sorority. Hi, my name is Cha Cha, and I am a recovering overachiever.

  6. I enjoy painting. Not like Van Gogh painting – like Benjamin Moore painting. I enjoy the tangible aspect of the work and how painting a room makes it totally new. I also tell myself that it’s exercise.

  7. I know pretty much all the lyrics to every song I’ve ever heard. And if I don’t quite know them, I’ll make them up and fake it. Usually with lyrics about pancakes and/or Foxie Doxie.
This post just totally made the world a better place, didn’t it?

I want to tag some great blogs that I’ve just discovered. These fine ladies make me laugh, and this is a fun way to learn more about them!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Like a bad case of acne.

Today I drove about an hour and 20 minutes to meet my surrogate parents. I worked with this dear woman when I first moved to my fair city, and she and her tough but darling hubby took me under their wing. They have fed me when I needed nourishment, and not just food. They've helped me move - that's what kind of people they are.

So, Surrogate Mom and Surrogate Dad moved about a year ago, and I have only seen them once or twice since the move. But we each drove half way today and spent the afternoon in a diner. It was so, so wonderful to see them and catch up.

Surrogate Dad excused himself, saying something about finding a car wash, and left Surrogate Mom and I to chat. And we both ended up crying as we talked about the last few months, and the many breaks and cracks in my heart.

It's funny, though. I cried in a diner that wasn't empty. People saw me crying. And I just didn't care. I don't have the energy to spend trying to keep my shit together for people I don't know.

It's freeing. And two weeks ago, when my boss at Corporate Behemoth asked me what was wrong? I evaded his question, then went back to my desk, took a deep breath, and wrote him an e-mail. I explained that the man I was going to marry changed his mind, and I was having a hard time. I thanked my boss for his concern, and explained that I couldn't talk about it without crying, so e-mail it was.

And while that was sort of mortifying, it was freeing as well. I got a very kind response from my boss. Just like how none of the diner patrons pointed and laughed at me today.

I don't know why I feel the need to pretend like everything is ok, even when it's really, really not. Just being honest about what I'm going through is empowering. I know I shouldn't be embarrassed or ashamed that I am nursing a serious heartbreak. But there is a part of me that feels like I should just get over it already. And I was surprised by how much I cried this afternoon.

But, so it goes. It's grief. And it's probably written on my forehead anyway, so I might as well just let it all out.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Things that are awesome.

I-Wish-I-Had-Thought-Of-It Awesome:
Weekly World News headline: Baby Seals Club Hunter

And-She-Did-Not-Disappoint Awesome:
The psychiatrist's Ditsy Receptionist? Was there today. She had gotten a perm.

This-Is-My-Life Awesome:
The Geriatric Poodle peed on the couch

The-Most-Awesomest-Of-The-Awesome Awesome:
After sitting on the couch, watching tv - alone - on a Friday night, I realized that my left butt cheek was cold and, strangely, wet. Then - and only then - did I realize that the Geriatric Poodle had peed on the couch.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

I'm going back tomorrow. I hope she's there.

When I first admitted that yes, yes I was seriously depressed and yes, yes I really did need some medical assistance, I left not one, not two, but three voicemails with the psychiatrist my counselor recommended.

Did I have OCD? No. I was depressed. Each phone call felt like running a marathon. But I was desperate. So I kept leaving messages.

Finally, this ditsy-sounding receptionist called me back. She was all, "Oh, sorry. I didn't realize from your messages that you wanted me to call you back."

Good thing I was depressed or I would have reached through the phone and strangled her. But instead I grunted. And then she said they had a cancellation the next day, so all was well.

When I got to the office, everything made sense. Ditsy Receptionist was maybe 24. She was all blonde and dirty jeans and cleavage. And when she asked me to sign the form saying I'd been given a copy of the privacy policy? And I had to ask for the privacy policy? I realized that dead-end, part-time receptionist jobs are where failed reality show contestants go to die.

But really, the best part is the outgoing voicemail message at the office. Since I left three messages, I pretty much have Ditsy Receptionist's spiel memorized:

"Thank you for calling the office of Dr. Head and Dr. Shrink. Umm? Leave a message and someone will return your call. Umm? If you're calling for a prescription refill, have the pharmacy fax a refill form to 555-1212. You must give three days' notice. If this is an emergency, go to a hospital immediately! Umm? Have a nice day!"

Is it just me, or is telling someone in a psychiatric emergency to go to the hospital and then telling them to have a nice day just a little ... Umm?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Sad on many levels.

I learned something new today.

A bezoar is a mass of indigestible yuck that is found in the digestive tract of animals and humans. It’s made of hair and fiber and gunk.

Basically, it’s a giant hairball that gets stuck in your intestine. Like the gunk that clogs up the pipes in a house. Only it’s in your body. And about a gazillion times more disgusting.

I learned about this at book club tonight, where Alice was telling us about her latest adventures in healthcare lawyering. She has the best stories. Stories that put that weird mole you have – the one with the hairs growing out of it – to shame.

And the lesson about bezoars was fitting, as today I spent $200 getting a new bathtub drain and can trap. Because taking a shower when the tub doesn’t drain is disgusting … although not quite as gross as having an indigestible mass of hair and vegetable fiber in your intestine. Evidently you can’t just drink Draino and make a bezoar go away.


So, I’m having adventures in plumbing. And it occurred to me today that all sorts of things are happening, lo these four weeks post-break-up. I wouldn’t even know where to begin to get The Ex-Boyfriend Formerly Known as Mr. Wonderful caught up.

I wanted to die! And then I met my rebound, Zoloft! And then I got a new TV! And Poochie rearranged all my furniture! And I went to New York!

And I realized today that the sound of your voice is fading from my mind.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

With hosiery and Pashminas for all.

So, I’m back from The Big Apple.

It was fantastic.

Nevermind the fact that my flight was delayed, or that once we arrived at LaGuardia, we sat for half an hour before they would let us off the plane. Bygones.

No, let us focus on the fact that I met up with my friend Jen, and we took a taxi to the swank penthouse apartment that My Gay Eighth Grade Boyfriend shares with his husband. Let us focus on the two darling yellow labs who greeted us and forced us to fall in love with them. Let us also focus on the kind hospitality of our host, and the rooftop terrace with a hot tub that overlooked the financial district skyline.

Sometimes, God / Buddha / Oprah just fucking PROVIDES, you know? I had no idea how badly I needed to sit in a hot tub and drink wine in the middle of Manhattan. But evidently, I totally did! And I totally needed to follow it up with a steam in the coolest shower / sauna ever.

So, we soaked. And we drank. And we walked all over, and we ate all sorts of deliciousness. New York pizza. Fantastic Greek food in a Greek diner that was, inexplicably, blasting Donna Summer’s entire body of work. Brunch and mimosas. Tapas and sangria. Dutch butter almond cake. And chocolate. And we got dessert from a place that sells nothing but rice pudding.

We wandered around Chinatown and Little Italy and SoHo. We got massages in Chinatown – an experience during which I kept thinking, “I am paying for the privilege of having a little Chinese man beat the shit out of me. Hmm.” I have the bruises (seriously!) to prove it, but I think it’s all about releasing toxins, so ok.

We got up early and got a behind-the-scenes tour of Good Morning America, which I’ll dish on when I score some photographic proof of our exploits. We took the ferry to see the Statue of Liberty. And we did a teensy bit of shopping. I bought two pairs of knee-highs at Century 21. Because I am extravagant like that. We also hit Chinatown and bought some Pashminas. Because they are fabulous.

But mostly? Mostly, we just explored and relaxed and took it all in and recharged and found the kind of love and energy that only comes from people who know all about you and love you anyway.

I was sad to go, but had a great conversation with the cabbie on the ride back to the airport. He promised me that I will find love, so you know it’s true. However, based on my weekend, I think I already have.

Friday, November 14, 2008

I’m in it for the food and the shopping.

When my dad was trying to help me make sense of things a few weeks ago, we got to talking about how I’m a really good girlfriend. The first thing he added to the list of reasons why I am such a superb partner? “You’re a really good traveler!”

It’s true. I travel light. And I go with the flow.

So, in the spirit of building upon personal strengths, I’m headed to New York this weekend. I’m meeting a dear friend who has to go for work. And we’re staying with my darling Gay Eighth Grade Boyfriend.

I’m sure a good time will be had by all. And if you happen to be watching Good Morning America on Sunday? We’ll be in the audience. I’ll be waving to you.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

More poop! And some other stuff, too.

So yesterday? When I was all, "For once I don't have a story about dog poo?" Yeah. About that?

I got up from my computer to find Geriatric Poodle in the act of defecating in my living room.

I think he is so cold outside that he just thinks about doing number one and getting back inside as soon as possible. The number two? She is an afterthought. And he's blind and deaf, so it's not like he can find the door to get back outside.

I'm just glad I have wood floors.

And the cold bit? Is totally my fault. In the trauma of the last few months, I sort of overlooked the poor guy's grooming needs. Then, one day I looked at him and realized he was about two months overdue for a haircut and was basically one giant tangle.

So they had to cut his hair shorter than usual, and he just looks so tiny and delicate. And cold. So he's sporting an array of sweatshirts and sweaters that I feel justified in dressing him in - he's geriatric! And almost nekkid! And cold!

Mama of the year? Right here.

In other news ... I have determined that I can't listen to the radio. At all. Every song is about love or new love or love gone bad or somebody who needs killin' cuz they loved all wrong.

I have dug out some CDs. I've been listening to a lot of Earth, Wind & Fire, because it's upbeat and happy. But everytime "September" comes on, I fast forward, because let's be honest - my September sucked ass.

So, I need some music. Y'all came through on The Mix Tape From Hell. Now, I need some suggestions for happy music. Empowering music. Music that will make me feel good about Cha Cha's Brave New World.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

For once I don't have a story about dog poo.

Tonight I looked up at the clear sky and was surprised to see a bright, full moon. That means it's been four weeks since Mr. Wonderful and I were on a walk and stopped in our tracks, faced with a huge harvest moon.

I knew he was going to end our relationship and felt helpless to stop him. As we watched the moon rise, he put his hand on my shoulder and I thought, "Don't. Don't touch me. Don't make it harder."

And now I am so very, very tired, like all of the worry and fret and sadness and want of the last several months is finally catching up with me. But I'm finding joy.

A dear friend gave me a book by Brian Andreas, a wonderful artist and poet. These lines resonated with me:

There are days
I drop words
of comfort on
myself like
& remember
that it is
enough to be
taken care of
by my self.

So I'm going to go to bed and will be funny again tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


It occurred to me today that I have eased out of Shock and Awe and have transitioned into more of a "This happened and it wasn't my choice but here we are" frame of mind.

Along with this, I am finally tired. I think my body has been running on adrenaline and panic. This also probably explains how I haven't been sleeping or eating, but I haven't been tired or hungry. One nice thing? I did lose 10 pounds. In six weeks. Without trying.

Yeah, you know you're jealous.

Now I'm making the rounds, having dinner with friends. Last night and tonight, I had dinner with college friends who now have shorties running about. I love my friends and I love their kids. But as I watched a 2-year-old and a 4-year-old dancing along to Dancing With the Stars, I felt sad.

My friends have hectic households with dirty floors and Cheerios stuck to walls. But there's a lot of joy.

I don't necessarily feel the need to have a biological child. But I am grieving for the little girl I thought would be my stepdaughter.

I'm thinking about the time we pretended the couch was a boat and the carpet was a sea of chocolate pudding, and all the stuffed animals kept falling in and had to be rescued. And I'm thinking about coloring and swinging and riding bikes, of blonde hair and Little Mermaid swimsuits.

And I'm sad.

I'm not inconsolable, incapable of getting off the couch like I was a week ago. But I'm sad. Finding the secret stash of coloring books and such that I had tucked away for the Ladybug didn't help. And I still have a beanie baby in my glove box in case of emergency.

I was a great partner. And I would have been a great stepmom. And my house? Really quiet.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Things are looking up. Now with more maggots!

Saturday night, both Poochie and I were overcome with "Sweet Jeeezus, what is that smell?"

It was Foxie Doxie. He put his head down and looked away, all, "Dude, I am just over here minding my own bidness. I don't know nothing 'bout no stank-ass smell."

I drowned him in Johnson & Johnson's baby shampoo and we called it good. Well, Poochie and I called it good, and my poor little dog called it cruel and unusual punishment.

We recounted the story to Alice and Jake. When asked what the stench smelled like, Poochie quickly answered, "Death!" And we all laughed.

The next day, we let Foxie Doxie outside, and Poochie watched him run directly over to a spot in the yard. The sassy canine took a deep whiff and the proceeded to roll with wild abandon.

Poochie checked it out and returned to the house with a grim face.

"Do you have a shovel? It's a decomposed squirrel. And maggots."

I started waving my hands in front of my face. I believe this would be called "Having the vapors." And from the house, I watched my brave and darling brother dig up the remains and the parasites.

I realized that having to clean up that mess by myself would have sent me over the edge. But God / Buddha / Oprah provides. Poochie ceremoniously dumped the carcass and the maggots ... over the fence into the yard of the repossessed house of the pothead next door. And all was well.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

I've found a new place to dwell.

Welcome to all of the kind folks who have journeyed here via the lovely Mrs. G. Welcome to the Heartbreak Hotel … where the meds are starting to kick in and I’m exploring better living through new electronics.

So, my brother Poochie came this weekend. He held me while I cried and cried. And then he announced that we were done crying. So we ate barbeque. And then we bought a TV.

Last week, when Alice was helping me develop a plan that was more than “sit on my couch and sob,” one of her tough-love action items was about my TV. Some friends gave it to me three years ago … they were going to put it on the curb, but I took it instead.

It buzzes. And the picture is really dark. And this beaute is hooked up to DishNetwork, which I think means I am truly white trash, not far from the shotgun shack with the satellite dish.

So Alice suggested I rearrange my living room furniture and buy a new TV already. I think maybe the TV was one of those things that I took for granted but maybe everyone who visited the house noticed. Hmm.

So, Poochie and I trekked to Best Buy and I bought one of them there flat screen tee vees. We rearranged the furniture, but left the old TV plugged in on the floor so that we could experience the joy of unranked Iowa beating #3 Penn State. There was celebration. And smart interior design.

There was also celebration for Foxie Doxie. I determined Thursday night that the young rapscallion had ingested … a pantyliner.


I suddenly had visions of having to tell either I Love You Forever Dr. Vet or his counterpart, More My Age and Totally Hot Vet that my dog was deathly ill because he ate a pantyliner.

Poop Watch 2008 commenced.

And then, there was celebration, because Foxie Doxie passed it like a champ. And even outside! And Poochie sang Kool ‘n’ The Gang’s “Celebration” in the middle of the street. And all was right with the world.

All in all, it’s been a pretty good weekend so far. I’m trying really hard not to be daunted by the eight hours of nothing to do before it’s time to go to bed. There was a time when I would kill for eight hours of nothing to do … now, I feel tasked with work, that work being Doing Something.

So maybe I’ll watch some TV. Or maybe I’ll go to Old Navy and buy some underwear since half the contents of my undie drawer are unwearable. Or maybe I’ll be a good neighbor and rake some of those leaves. Or maybe I’ll just keep surfing blogs.

Yeah, this is why the readers keep pouring in and keep coming back for more. The drama. Welcome.

Friday, November 7, 2008

The mix tape keeps following me.

If you want to really experience The Mix Tape From Hell, just go to Walgreens. Their muzak is full of this-song-makes-me-want-to-die classics that you had previously purged from your memory.

If you really want to get the full experience, you'll go to Walgreens to fill your very first ever antidepressant prescription. This, after meeting with a very kind psychiatrist with a very thick Spanish accent. Although you will be puffy-eyed from crying during the appointment, you'll feel somewhat validated by how she looked at you and said, "You have been depressed for a very long time. Why have you waited so long to come see me?"

And you'll even think that maybe she had a point when she told you that maybe you were acting funny for months from the chemical imbalance - to which you are genetically predisposed - and perhaps that played a role in your recent breakup.

And you'll want to hug her when she promises you that it will be ok, with or without Mr. Wonderful.

So when you're puffy-eyed, waiting for your scripts at Walgreens, you'll actually flip through a copy of Cosmo. And while you're looking at an article about how to pick up guys in bars, a prospect that is most heinous and foreign to you, you'll hear the forgotten gem "Don't let it end" by Dennis DeYoung.

And you'll want to barf. And / or sob hysterically.

So then you'll go buy some eye cream, get your meds and get the hell out of there.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Beautiful privilege.

I was able to vote early, and cast my ballot on Saturday.

I got there about half an hour before the poll closed, and the line snaked through the county administration building. All told, I waited about an hour and a half.

It was hot. People were obviously wilted, but the mood was upbeat. Everyone had a sense of purpose, even after the wait.

When I finally made it into the voting area, the older woman at the registration table looked a bit frazzled and beat. I asked her how she was doing, realizing that she had about another hour of voters in line behind me.

She beamed. “I’m great! Isn’t this exciting? We’re making history! I can’t wait for Tuesday!”


Monday, November 3, 2008

My feelings can best be expressed in song.

Wow – there was such a backlash against my offhand comment about making a mix tape. I love it!

So, of course, I think we should all brainstorm on the worst, tackiest, most awful post-break-up mix tape songs ever. Because it’s fun, not because I will actually make a mix tape. I promise. And also because I desperately need something to laugh about, as I sent the “please don’t contact me any more” e-mail today, even though really, really I do want to see him and talk to him but it just hurts too much. And I just pretty much want to die.

So. Let us focus on the task at hand.

My suggestions for the World’s Most Awkward and Humiliating Mix Tape:

I admit that I have quoted one of these songs to Mr. Wonderful. But I’ll never tell which one.

And now that I’m completely and totally depressed … your turn. Readers?

Sunday, November 2, 2008

I can no longer say I'm great fun at parties.

It's been a rough few days. Oh, but who are we kidding? It's been a rough however long.

Friday, I realized that Mr. Wonderful doesn't love me - if he ever did - and that we aren't getting back together anytime in the near future. I guess I really don't have to worry about his Christmas gift (which for once I actually knew what to get - I've known since July. Goddammit.).

Yes, I'm 33 years old. Yes, I was still viewing part of this breakup like a 13-year-old girl. And yes, it still hurts just as bad now as it did when I had braces and worried about getting my locker open. In fact, it hurts way worse.

I won't even go into the fact that I have actually caught myself considering, "Hey - maybe I should make him a mix tape."

But now I know where I am and can move forward from there.

And moving forward seems to mean moving off my couch. Alice and Jake invited me to tag along to a Halloween party Friday night. Planning my tattoo artist costume provided hours of Something to Do, and I was excited to meet new people. But after spending an hour and a half crying Friday afternoon, my brain was in a slightly, uh, off-kilter, non-party place.

My eyes were too swollen for the fake eyelashes.

But I went with it. I cried a little at Alice and Jake's, and then I got my shit together, we put on our costumes, and we went to the party. I didn't know anyone except Alice and Jake.

Everyone was nice. Alice and Jake didn't abandon me. But I was completely overwhelmed. I looked at all the strangers around me and thought that where I really wanted to be was trick-or-treating with Mr. Wonderful and the Ladybug. Of any of the men at the party, of all the men in the world, I was only interested in Mr. Wonderful.

I held up the wall. I realized I could ask Jake to take me home and he could come back to the party.

This realization put me on the verge of tears.

I held it together for a few more minutes. Then I said, "Hey, can I ask you a favor?"

Bless his heart, he moved quickly. Five minutes later, all three of us were in the car. I sobbed like a freak. I was afraid I'd ruined their evening, even though they said they were glad to have a reason to leave after only 45 minutes. I was so relieved to be out of that house and free to be just as sad as I truly was.

They spoke reassuring words and offered to let me stay in their guest room. If you look up "friends" in the dictionary, you will see their photos.

I didn't stay at their house, but just the offer made me feel safe and secure. I went home. Alice picked me up at 8 a.m. for a yoga class that she didn't mention was an advanced class. It was great, but I have hardly been able to move since. And I have a new mantra, courtesy of a van we saw merging onto the highway as we drove to class.

It was an old brown minivan with plastic in lieu of windows at the driver's door, the side window on the driver's side and, inexplicably, also for the back window on the passenger side. The worst part, though, was that the woman driving the van had to lift up the plastic at the corner of the driver's side "window" so that she could see her mirror to merge.

Alice, empathetic always, said, "At least you're not driving that van."

Indeed. I have faith.