in 2015 my 3 year old marriage ended like a tea candle that snuffs itself. it’s amicable and for the first time in 31 years, i’m living alone. as an independent woman, coming home to an empty apartment and a lazy cat who adores me sounded like a dream come true.
in 2015 i chose the word happy: to pursue things that make me happy, thus the hard conversations that led to the end of my marriage. i started hosting a standup comedy showcase featuring the funniest ladies in NC. i was cast in a local independent movie WITH all of my clothes on! i left a lousy job where i was overworked and underpaid.
when 2016 started, i was optimistic. 2015 was the bad chapter, 2016 was a new book altogether. in 2016 i chose the word light and held on to happy. i had some plans for weight loss (being light-er), dealing with some of my darkest shames, focusing on activities and friendships that bring positivity, etc.
but the job i took to escape that lousy job turned out to be toxic quicksand. my apartment was lonely. i hadn’t negotiated fair pay when i was hired and my savings had been sitting at $30 for months. when i was alone after work the thought processes that creeped in were scathingly unkind. i began to spiral. alcohol definitely helped take the edge off of those self-aimed sharp “you’re failing” thoughts. i wasn’t taking care of myself, so i did what everybody does who is lonely and hating themself: downloaded Tinder.
dating apps are FABULOUS for instant validation of being a desirable woman. but i’m not good at not getting attached to handsome men who want to hang out with me. i was stood up by 2 different Joshes in 2 weeks. then i met Drew.
Drew showed up at our first date with cookies he’d baked at home for himself for fun. Drew does improv and it was the definition of hitting it off. we were all in. we deleted all of the dating apps; immediately settling into a routine of basically living together. my apartment was never empty when i got home, and there was a man who wanted to talk to me!
Drew had been looking for work. he’d had a phone interview for a job in Dallas. i told him that he was free to do whatever he needed to and that we’d figure it out. of course i didn’t want him to go, but he got the job and we started planning a long distance relationship. i helped him pack his apartment into a crate, and then we drove to TX in 4 days. it was the best road trip of my life.
i got a new job in Durham, and we both started on June 13th. we talked every night. it felt like he was still in town, just unable to come over.
until July. he went silent. his phone wasn’t working. he took days to text me back. made me worry. on August 10th he called me to break up, the next day he admitted to meeting someone else. he canceled my plane ticket for 8/18 to celebrate our August birthdays.
i am figuring out what to do with the remaining 139 days of 2016 without rose colored glasses.
i have light to chase and so many jokes to write. all that worry in July helped me cut alcohol out and go running. i am freer than before.
please send me a birthday message world (8/21),
raleigh, NC, USA