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360

By annie

Thanksgiving last year…..360 some days ago.

My marriage was over.  We just hadn’t called it yet.  I was down for the count.

My daughter was home from far away.  She was 21, on her own since 18.  She was a grown up person, who didn’t need me. She was kind and sweet and dealt very well with her younger siblings who can be a handful.  She was patient with them, more so than I had been in a long time.

For the first time in 22 years I knew for certain that all things do work together for the good.

Thanksgiving 1989 – I was 18.  Pregnant with a guy who a few weeks earlier physically assaulted me.  When I told him he said “well it’s not mine”.  It was.  That’s how you break up with your pregnant girlfriend though, for the record.  That’s where I was Thanksgiving 1989.  I was about to get kicked out of a conservative Christian college for being pregnant.  I was about to place such shame on my family.  blah blah blah.  This my friends is why abortions exist.  I was going to lose my boyfriend, my family, my community over an intangible human that I hadn’t even “wanted”.

There was no way I was going to have an abortion.  The choice was made when I decided to have sex.  Pregnancy is often a side effect of sex.  I would follow through with what I’d already signed the waiver for.

I contemplated adoption, but I was 18.  I had no clue.  You have sex, you get pregnant, you have a baby, you raise that baby.  That’s just the way it is.

Over the years I had wondered if I had made the right choice to be the one to raise her.  Last Thanksgiving was the first time I KNEW I had.

She was still this perfect little human I had brought forth into the world.  Sure she has 47 tattoos, some of which she regrets, has more holes in her head than a colander, swears like a sailor and smokes like a chimney, but she is a good person.  I will take a good person any day of the week.

Did she get everything she needed from me always?  Hardly.  But my prayer all along has been “God, I’ll do my best, you do the rest.”

Back to last year.

I was sitting on my couch watching my daughter deal with her siblings in a kind a loving way.  Thinking, “there is a possibility that I could not know her” and I was so very happy that I did.  My decision to raise her myself put me on a path I had not intended to take, while the other path was just as viable, and probably would have turned out ok as well.

The decision to leave my marriage was looming large.  Could I redouble my efforts yet again?  Probably.  But I was exhausted.  I was done.  He needed to fight for me, and if he wouldn’t, it was easier to leave.

Which of course I did.

I didn’t realize the burden I was under, until I was out from under it.

I always felt like a charity project.  Like he was doing me some sort of favor putting up with me.  Having to apologize for my behavior.  He was always upset that he learned something from the blog, why hadn’t I told him before I told Twitter?

Twitter works very well for Twitter and not for the way he communicates.  He expected me to stay on topic.  To carry on one conversation at a time.  To never talk about things that didn’t interest him.

“Not all of us know what a BQ is and saying “BQ” just makes the rest of us feel like idiots”

Well, I’m sorry that running is not interesting to you.  It is to me.  I talk to Twitter about BQ like you talk to your friends about frisbee golf and programming.

“It’s not frisbee golf, it’s disc golf.  And I don’t talk to you about it because you think it’s dumb”

Thank you for making my point for me…….

We have different interests, and somehow that made me wrong.  I didn’t need to talk to him about running.  I had people for that, but somehow fulfilling my needs elsewhere was equivalent to me fucking other people somehow.

I get distracted.  I am passionate.  I love a good fight. I start 50 things a day I have no intention of finishing.  Given the choice of filling the air with noise about nothing, just for the sake of carrying on a conversation, and sitting in silence, I’ll take the silence.  I like to leave the house and go places without having a plan, or a map.  I need more attention that most single humans can give me.

Turns out, none of this makes me a bad person.

He likes focused.  He liked passionate, but wanted me to reign it where it didn’t suit him.  Sorry, you cage part of the animal, you cage all of it. He would go to jail to avoid a fight.  Once he started something he carried it through til the bitter end.  If we were just gonna sit there and not talk, he had stuff to do.  We never left without a plan or a map.  And “seriously, I cannot compete with 800 people with your need for attention.”

None of that makes him a bad person.

We just didn’t fit.

After the dust settled, I told myself that I would give myself time to grieve. To heal.  To grow.  It’s been a year, next Tuesday.  I will wrap it up and put it away, and know that right or wrong, it’s done.

This is the path I decided to take, a 360 from the one I was on. For the first time ever, I feel that being Annie is not just ok, but it’s actually great. I am unique and special. I have a purpose in this life, and apologizing for my existence every day was not serving that purpose.  I am a moving target of unbridled passion.  There is no changing that.  I am learning how to channel it.  I’m confident that I will figure it out, before I resort to buying even one cat.  The universe has been waiting all this millennia for me to get here.  This is my time.

 

Filed in: annieology, TTh • Thursday, November 22nd, 2012
 

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Annie is all things awesome. Singer of songs, thinker of thoughts, runner of miles. When she isn't getting paid to kick ass as a personal trainer and health coach, she's looking for her keys.