Paul Madonna has got my number.
My divorce is final; I’m officially alone. (The statement is a touch more dramatic than the feeling.) Just before it went through, I opened myself again, and in doing so discovered I wasn’t the right person for someone I really liked. Which is fair, but hurt, and does not inspire me to risk losing again. Risk fucking up. But you have to, if you want to live the way I want to live.
For a few days I steeped in sadness and self-pity. Then guilt, for feeling so sorry for myself about trivial things while there are children being slaughtered at their schools. Then I started to come back around.
Tomorrow morning I get on a train. New Mexico will treat my wounds with her snow, hot springs, stars, and quiet. New York will stoke the fire in my belly, help me crave life again, and a quick trip to Baltimore to see a dear old friend will twirl me around. (One of my life’s great treasures is the collection of sweet reunions I’ve gathered over the years.) I am taking a notebook, and a Polaroid camera, and a heart to fill with hope. And also some wool longjohns to guard my weak California sensibilities.
(I disabled comments for now; it’s not that I don’t like the interaction – I do – but when I know who is reading and how they’re reading, I begin to write for my audience, and that’s was not my intention for this space.)
One year ago today I logged in to Facebook and found a message from S, the first contact we’d had in ten years.
One year later, today, I haven’t talked with him in nearly a month, and it had been a month before that, and we are well on our way back out of each others’ lives. Like we always are. In and out, brief flashes of frenzy followed by years of nothing.
Honestly, I thought this time would be different. I think he did, too. But then I admitted that if I wanted to live I had to leave my marriage, and I became available, and that ruined the fantasy for him. Or something. In any case, that was the beginning of the end.
So today is the anniversary of one of two major heartbreaks I’ve undergone over the past year. And I’m doing my best not to confuse those heartbreaks with the feelings I’ve been developing over the new guy who has come into my life, though after five fantastic, comfortable, familiar, and building dates, it seems like maybe that’s drawing to a close as well. Of course, I could be getting ahead of myself or conflating everything, but the memory of the two previous abandonments, S and my ex, have my reflexes primed for rejection and pain. Any and everything that I let myself feel is another step toward an inevitable ending, or so it seems.
Anyway, I hope I’m getting ahead of myself.