And I'm sorry that I come here to vent whenever the black dog hits me as it did today.
It stops you in your tracks, makes you unable to function. I didn't sleep all night, except for an hour just before dawn, because I realized I had a breakfast with a client. I wanted to cancel. I lay awake and worried and held on to the dogs and then I realized that Charlie wouldn't cancel, and that I couldn't either; it would be rude and unprofessional. But on little to no sleep, and under a dark cloud, it took a lot to get me there. This is not my personality. This is not who I am. This is not what I am proud of. I want to embrace it. I want to say, this is just part of who you are, and people will understand, there is no need to be ashamed, but I am ashamed, and I don't like this part. I don't like the stasis that sets in, the inability to laugh at oneself, the feeling that the sunshine that is usually beaming out has evaporated.
I want to note three or four things that I think might have contributed to this.
1) The Maharishi (my ex/not quite ex-husband as we're still married but we live completely separate lives) was apparently having a bad day and laid into me over something to do with our taxes (we still file jointly) and after three years of miserableness and the last two years of getting on generally rather well, this came as a shock. I don't blame him. I know he has a lot he is worrying about, but it was abrupt, and sharp, and made me realize that I was living in a cloud of denial. To actually think that one can go on as if one's marriage is over and not be divorced is quite frankly naive. We have enjoyed one of those relationships that people point to and say "oh, wow, you're so civilized! you do holidays together! you do dinners together!" and I feel kinda smug and proud, and it's just an illusion. Yes, my dear friend and ex-husband is a good man, a kind man, and a man I am very happy not to be married to anymore. He has a lovely girlfriend and I have a lovely boyfriend, and it's now time to move on, to get on with this very short life we have.
2) My daughter is understandably still angry at me. It is healthy, I suppose, that she tells me so. But it kills me. It absolutely kills me to know that she is so mad at me. And for the life of me, I don't know what to do about it. She is a spectacular human being: smart and beautiful and bright and loved and loving. But we are at odds, and it feels absolutely horrible.
3) I found out today that a friend had nearly died of a heart attack. She's a strong woman, brave, busy, creative, sparkling, full of life, young, charismatic, and she nearly died. If it weren't for the miraculous quick-minded action of two young doctors who administered blood thinners immediately, she would be dead. She told me that now she looks at life completely differently. She avoids conflict. She doesn't dwell on bad news. She is seeking out those she loves to be around her. She is taking her time to choose projects. She reaching out and telling people she loves them, as she did to me today. It's so so so trite, isn't it? But life is SHORT. And KINDNESS is what matters. The only thing. We had a jolly conversation, a lovely conversation. Her eyes were sparkling. She has lost weight ("It's the heart attack diet" she said, gleefully, twinkling at me.) She is different.
4) The T**** Stuff: Lies, Bigotry, Racism, More Lies. Blinding us. Every single news outlet. Every other tweet. On Facebook. On Instagram. On the news. This awful, awful man with the orange face and the hair Jimmy Fallon loves to muss. It's so far away from what my brother calls "the high road." It's low and small and medieval and underhand and lacking in any kind of empathy or spritiuality. We are bathed in it, we're breathing it, and worse, people are embracing it. It feels like a shift to the dark side. We should be nurturing our better angels. Not this. Not ever this. (For more of this, please find Amy Ferris, who writes so eloquently and passionately about this horribleness.)
And so today, I'm stopped in my tracks, snuggled with my dogs, wrapped up warm, drinking tea, and hoping for a better tomorrow. The mere act of putting my thoughts into my fingers through the keyboard and on to this screen helps me purge. Thank you.