Another Tale From The Weekend

This past Friday night Athletica invited me over for a sleep-over at her house.  It was nice to just be out of the house.  We ordered pizza, had wine and watched the movie The Help, which was excellent, by the way.   I seem to also sleep a bit better.  The wine maybe?  On Friday I forced myself to eat three square meals.  Enough of this.  I won’t let this whole situation have that kind of control over me any longer.  I gagged a few times but felt so much better in the long run.

Saturday morning we got up early and headed over to Athletica’s gym.  She is friends with the owner and his wife.  The owner, Brian, is very passionate about his work.  He is very encouraging and there were plenty of knuckle bumps and high fives after a completion of a set of reps on the circuit.  One of the exercises involved sitting on an aerobic stepper while pulling a rope with heavy weights tied to the end across the studio.  Once completed, you grabbed the end of the rope and ran to the other side of the gym to repeat it.  It was really hard but I enjoyed it.  Brian stood behind me yelling, “Pull Monsoon!  Pull!  Pull!  Pull!”  And pull I did, grunting like a contestant on The Biggest Loser the entire time.  I would like to join this gym and may do so in a couple of weeks.  Athletica has belonged for a few months and I can’t get over the difference in her. 

On Friday I got my car back.  It seem to be running so much better but on the way home I noticed it was still smoking.  Now the radiator needs to be replaced.  I was hoping to just be careful with the car as it is not overheating, until I could afford to get it fixed in a couple of weeks.  This was not to be.  Yesterday I left for work and something was clearly wrong.  The check engine light of death came on.  Never a good sign.  I texted Athletica once I got to work and asked her what she thought it could be.  She called me a bit later and said that a friend of hers was going to stop by to run a diagnostic. 

By mid-morning yesterday I was frazzled.  I turned some music on and started to work.  Then out of the blue I felt like I needed to stop what I was doing and just sit peacefully for a few minutes.  It was so strong.  I wasn’t to type one more letter or turn off the music.  I gave in and turned around to see the wind blowing through the palm trees and other trees not indigenous to this area.  Interestingly enough, my music shut off mid-song by itself.  I felt so much peace for those few minutes and it brought tears to me eyes.  Guess it was my God moment or something. 

Athetica’s friend came out mid-afternoon and ran the diagnostic on my car.  The leak in my radiator is now huge and two of the pistons in the engine were misfiring.  I had no choice but to call the former other half and ask for help.  I was to meet him at the mechanic’s house after work and then I would take my former MIL’s car to work.  Somehow we got to talking about all that’s been going on between us and I was trying hard to keep it together.  The feelings are still so raw.  It just seems so useless to even discuss it at this point.  We got off the phone and where my boss was gone for the day I let the flood waters open again.  My office is actually a very safe place for one to cry.  The door is locked, the walls are sound-proof and I am the only employee.  One day during one of my episodes, a client called.  I was quite impressed that I could switch gears so quickly and no one was the wiser.

So, I am looking forward to a few things.  This coming weekend Athletica and I are going to Sedona.  I have Friday off from work.  There is a race early Saturday morning.  We are staying at a really nice resort and will probably also do some hiking through the red rocks.  It should be so much fun and I am looking forward to a change of scenery.  The following weekend I am doing a few activities with that new activities group I joined.  This includes seeing a blues band play and also dinner at a traditional Chinese restaurant.  Athletica used her frequent flyer mile points for two tickets to Carlsbad, CA in April.  She is in a race and I’ll just be going to relax.  It was incredibly kind of her to offer and it is nice to have things to look forward to.  My beach cruiser will most likely remain on lay away for a while due to the costs of my car.  Luckily I have 90 days to pay for it and it hasn’t even been a month yet.

Not too much else has been heard from DGF.  While I lay in bed Sunday evening reading a book on Kindle through my phone, a message came through.  Thinking it was just some random email I decided not to check it right away.  About an hour later I checked and it was DGF.  “Happy Sunday,” is what it said.  I suppose he was either testing the waters with me or the new girlfriend may have been in the restroom.  I promptly ignored it and went back to my book.  In time I suppose, we’ll probably talk…but it won’t be today and most likely not tomorrow either.

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Live And On Location From Loca Land

After 10 great years with my little SUV it finally broke down for the first time earlier this week.  I made it home and stood in the driveway for a while watching the smoke escape from the hood.  I had no choice but to call the former other half and I hated the fact that I had to rely on him.  Luckily though he has been car pooling to work and has allowed me to use that big gas guzzling behemoth of a truck that screams of ‘Sunday!  Sunday!  Sunday!”  I should have my car back today.  It was also an expense I was not counting on. 

Lately I’ve barricaded myself in my room and it hit me this morning that I really need to pick myself up by the bootstraps and start getting out a little more.  I have not been to the gym.  I have barely eaten the past couple of days so I’m surprised that I don’t feel faint.  I have to return to the world of healthy eating.  There is a race next weekend.

Earlier this week my friend Ana in Boston texted me that there was a certain web site I needed to check out.  “POF,” she said.  She said it was great.  “You’ll love all the cubs.”  Cubs?  So I went to the web address she sent via my phone and it looked like something you had to register for.  Other than the area to type in your user I.D. and password, there was no other info to even say what the site was.  I texted her back, “What is POF?”  Her response was, “It stands for Plenty of Fish and you should see all the hot guys there.”  Oh gosh.  Here we go.  “You are a cougar now,” she told me.  “Meow.”  I’ve never considered myself as such, as if a Cougar were a different species of human being that has had way too much plastic surgery and hits on her daughter’s boyfriends.  Worst off, I’m thinking, why is Ana looking on an online dating site?  She has been married for 20 years now.  I was in her wedding.  A few days later she texted that she is thinking of leaving her husband and wants to know if she can come to Arizona and stay with me for a while.  Looking back the signs have been there all a long.

My guy friend going through the divorce was officially divorced as of yesterday.  So, DGF (Divorced Guy Friend) calls on Wednesday morning at about 5:50 am.  This is actually quite normal for phone calls and texts at any given hour of the night or day.  I open one eye and answer but he has already hung up.  I text him and ask if he just called.  He responds, ‘sorry!’  I respond, ‘dork’ and go back to sleep.  A few minutes later and there is another text message.  It was him again.  He told me that this new friend he has been dating the past few weeks is now his exclusive girlfriend.  This of course gets my attention.  I sat up in bed and let the words sink in.  “It was a whirlwind,” he told me.  While I tried to be happy for him I realized that I was about to lose my partner in commiseration.  The anchor had fallen off my boat.    He had changed his Facebook status to ‘in a relationship’.  Hence the call that morning moments after the status update.  I was as speechless as much as one can be over text messaging.  He said he felt pressured from her.  He has only been seeing her for a few weeks and get this, she is only here visiting.  She lives in Georgia.  I asked him if he was going to have a long distance relationship.  He said, “Yeah, I guess so.  I don’t know if I’m ready for this.  What should I do?” 

“That,” I typed, “is not something I can help you with.  You’ll have to figure out what is right for you.”  He kept apologizing as if he had betrayed me.  I told him he didn’t need to be sorry.  He had been through a lot and deserved to be happy. 

Up until that moment I didn’t realize how much I had been leaning on him for support throughout this whole ordeal.  I went to the new girlfriend’s Facebook page which is suddenly public.  She had changed her picture to a very provocative one which I found odd.  In fact, I find this whole thing odd.  Perhaps it had something to do with a certain recent run in they both had with DGF’s ex-wife?  Apparently the new girlfriend wasn’t too happy about it.  I’m happy for him but there’s a part of me that feels sorry for him at the same time.  What came next still has me spinning.

Yesterday morning a few minutes past six am, there was another text message from him.  Again he is apologizing and telling me how sorry he is and how guilty he feels.  Again I tell him not to be sorry.  I point out that I realized how much I had depended on him and it did freak me out thinking I was about to lose that.  Later on in the morning while talking to my boss, my phone chimes that there is a message.  After my boss vacates my office, I pick it up and am dumbfounded by what it says.  It is of course from DGF.

“I love you.”

I stare at the message for a few minutes, put the phone down, pick it back up.  There it is in plain English.  I place the phone down again and put my head in my hands.  How does one respond to that?  Thank you?  Get bent?  Or does one respond at all?  How would the new girlfriend feel about this latest revelation?  I pick the phone up again, and again stare at the message.    There are his picture, his name, the time, date and of course the message.  I glance at my scanner next to my desk.  and then back at the phone.  A thought crosses my mind like a dark cloud passing the sun on an Arizona afternoon.  I smirk to myself, delete the message and go back to work.  This morning I deleted his contact info out of my phone.

Yesterday afternoon I’m working away when I receive another text message.  This time it is from the same man I had drinks with a few weeks ago.  He asked if I’d be free for Friday night.  Honest to goodness, what a day!  I didn’t realize the ‘deer in the headlights’ look would turn out to be so irresistable.  I let him know honestly that I’m not ready to date.  I did say that several times before but it must have some strange reverse psychological effect.  He wrote, “Well, excuse me for being interested in you.”  Where it was again text messaging, which I’m growing to loathe, I couldn’t tell if he was kidding. I’m guessing he was.  He told me to reach out when I was ready.  I’m thinking the 12th of Never may be an appropriate date. 

I drank my coffee in bed this morning and watched the rising sun dance between the fronds of the palm tree.  Then I got up, looked around at the house and thought about all the things I needed to accomplish.  When things went south last month I made a plan for myself.  I would clean this place up, I would not date yet and I would start to fix anything that is broken.  My car was first on the list.  I think there may be a trip over to The Home Depot this weekend.

Activities, Close Calls, and Acts of Patience

After joining the bicycle riding group online I happen to notice another bigger site that this group was a part of.  I saw that different groups do all kinds of activities.  These aren’t all singles groups (thank God) but just people with common interests that get together to do different activities such as hiking, dining, wine tastings, etc…  I skimmed through some of the events and passed by the Atheist Chili Cook-off.  Can you imagine?  Seeing I wear a small set of rosary beads around my neck I can’t imagine that I would be very welcome there!  LOL.  Anyway, I did join a dinner group and their next event is at a restaurant that does Chinese Hot Pot dinners.  I suppose it would be like fondue.  These dinners fill up fast so when the notification came in I immediately signed up.  No turning back now.  This will be my first excursion out into a group of folks I don’t know from a hole in the wall.  I have a feeling it will be fun.

An acquaintance on Facebook also belongs so I wrote to him to ask him how he liked the groups.  He wrote back that he was single and had met some people through some of the single mixers.  I am of course not interested in that right now.  About five minutes later my cell phone rang and it was him.  I wasn’t expecting that but all my info is listed on Facebook.  I don’t mind that it is.  Most folks I know well and my site is private to outsiders.  I really wasn’t ready for this though.  He asked me out for Happy Hour that night.  I thought, what the heck, I’ll go anyway.  After checking my appearance about 20 times in the mirror I left and met him at an upper-scale bar.  I made it clear that I was not ready to date.  It was a nice night but again, I felt terrified.  I sat across from him at one of those tall bar tables and I placed my coat and purse on the seat next to me as if to say, do not cross the invisible line, Mister.  It instantly reminded me of long car trips in my parent’s station wagon with my sisters.  We were always drawing invisible lines into the vinyl to keep the other out.  While he was nice and all, I told myself after that night that was it.  Its going to be a while.  Monsoon needs to figure out who Monsoon is again before I attempt that!

Friday night I left work frazzled.  First I headed to the post office and on the way home I had the surreal experience of striking a jaywalker as he cut through traffic.  Luckily he was not hurt.  I had just turned into the center lane (which in Arizona is aptly named the suicide lane) to make a left hand turn.  Out of traffic came a kid who couldn’t have been more than 20.  He was running, so basically slammed into my car, which bent the side view mirror inwards.  I immediately stopped, my heart having now been relocated to the neck area.  I glanced in horror behind me expecting to see blood and all kinds of other gore in the street.  The buddy of the kid I hit immediately pulled his friend up to a standing position and they both continued to run across the street as if nothing had happened.  Where they on drugs?  Drunk?  Man, that had to have hurt.  I rolled down my window and shouted, “Are you okay???”  He yelled back that he was fine and he was sorry.  I yelled back, “Why didn’t you use the cross walk?”  Seeing it was only 20 feet away from where they crossed, that would have been the more than logical thing to do.  He didn’t answer and kept running.  I pulled into a church parking lot after making the turn and sat for a while to calm down.  Then I got out and fixed the mirror.  After 30 minutes or so I headed home.  I immediately put on my pajamas, poured myself a rare drink (berry martini, heavy on the vodka) and got into bed.  I had the strange desire to try on the shoes I had treated myself to which would make Lady Gaga proud.  Not sure where the heck I’ll wear them but I put them on with my p.j.s, got back into bed and drank the rest of my martini.  What a sight I must’ve been. 

Saturday evening my phone rang and it was my guy friend going through the divorce.  I really expected to never hear from him as we had gotten into a stupid argument over text messaging.  I had told him last week that if he ever needed to talk then he would have to pick up the phone and call.  Things kept getting misconstrued over text messaging, which of course is only meant for a quick sentence or two, not a whole conversation.  He had asked me for advice regarding this stalker girl on his Facebook page.   I knew immediately who he was talking about and suggested he delete her.  Guess that was the wrong answer.  Anyway, he called and actually thanked me for being such a good friend to him.  I was quite surprised.  We talked for about 30 minutes or so and I guess he did end up deleting that one girl.  I highly suspect it would have just been a matter of time before she would have showed up at his door unannounced.  He has started dating so it was interesting to hear about his experiences.  He and his ex-wife have been separated since last July and only recently filed for divorce back in November.   I relayed to him my experience out with that one man and how terrifying it was.  I said I would live vicariously through him for now. 

Some days I feel kind of lost but I know this will pass and things will evolve into something else.  I need to be patient.  Patience has never been my strong point so here, I suppose, is my crash course.

Looking Forward. . .

Not being one to dwell too long on things, I decided to act on a desire I’ve had for a while and to purchase a Beach Cruiser bike (think Pee Wee Herman).  A client of mine was in yesterday and mentioned that in the Phoenix area there is a group that does scheduled rides on weekends.  Now, I have not ridden a bike in almost 20 years.  The next scheduled ride is during Arizona Bike Week.  Not so sure about that (think Pee Wee goes into the biker bar and almost gets beaten up).  Tequila!

Yesterday was tough.  I’ve been able to throw myself into work but yesterday afternoon a client called.  She is a sweetheart of a person but very chatty.  I know when she calls that I’ll be on the phone for 20 to 30 minutes.  January is our busy time of year and sometimes I am just way too nice to say I need to go.  So I sat on the phone with her and I could feel my anxiety rising.  Finally I got off the phone and back to work.  I sat and bawled at my desk after my boss left.  Then I called my Mother.  We talked for a while and then I went home.  She and my sisters are planning on coming out in March which is something to look forward to.  I texted my guy friend that is going through the divorce and at this point he is probably wishing I would just get a life.  I probably shouldn’t be treating him as one of my girlfriends.  It wasn’t too long ago I was getting the ‘my life is over’  2am texts from him but women just have it all over men when it comes to the listening department. 

This morning my Mom sent me an email and this is what it said:

“Hi Monsoon,

Just wanted to let you know that I’m thinking of you. . .hope you are feeling better.  Keep on top of that fever – call by Friday if you still feel as though you have it.  Well, it finally snowed here today – just kind of wet and slushy…kind of a mess getting in. . .

I’m looking forward to you being a happy girl again – you have a very good spirit and i just want you to be happy as you deserve to be!!

I love you,

Mom”

It was a nice thing to come into this morning.  I also told my boss about what was going on.  He said that I should consider he and his wife as friends and to let him know if I needed anything.  I thought that was incredibly kind.

At least there are some things to look forward to.  Athletica and I are in a race in a few weeks that is being held up in Sedona.  She is using some credit card points so we can stay at a really nice resort.  It should be fun.

I suppose change will always be scary.  I’ve spent the morning feeling like I could puke but there is definitely hope.  The song below is on my phone and I play it in the morning .  It makes me feel like I should be jumping up and down for joy.  🙂

Season of Change. . .

Emancipation!

It is official.  I have separated from my other half.  No more lies.  No more infidelity.  I waffle back and forth between being completely and utterly relieved to feeling like my heart has been cut out of my chest. 

 
On Friday morning I took my wedding rings off (see enclosed picture).  My naked hand looks so beautiful to me.  Saturday evening I went up to Athletica’s house and we drank champagne.  We were supposed to be celebrating but instead as I spoke about it I found myself wanting to cry.  I waited a while after drinking the champagne and then drove home and went to bed.  I texted a friend of mine who is going through a divorce and told him what had happened.  He wrote back long after I had fallen asleep that he remembered very well what it felt like and to sleep well.  Then he added that he liked champagne.  Such are the comments of my guy friends.
 
I spoke with friends and family over the weekend and everyone agreed that I had done the right thing.  I knew I had.  Three years is a long time to be miserable.  Not sure where to go from here.  How do I let people know?  Do I send out a blanket email?  Can you imagine:
 
“Dear friends and family,
Due to irreconcilable differences my other half and I will no longer be attending your barbecues together.  We have separated.  Please do not call me to discuss because I am fine.   
 
Hope the Diamondbacks will have a stellar year! 
 
                                                                Sincerely,
                                                                Monsoon”
 
Although its early, way too early to be thinking about any of this, I wondered what it would be like to date again.  Maybe eventually.  I don’t know.  In all honesty I am terrified.  I can’t think that far ahead so I won’t.  I look forward to having some peace.  Once his stuff is gone I’m going to buy a bottle of expensive wine and sit in my livingroom and sip a glass.  I’m going to breathe in the peace and look forward to the new life I will create for myself.