Saturday, June 29, 2013

Moving in and Collapsing

As opposed to my last post, I am no longer numb. Today I moved into my new apartment and I am fragile, a welling bubble of emotion that is contained by a thin, cracking glass dome.

And I know by typing this, I will shatter. It will be brief and I will pull it together, but I need to get this out of me right now.

So today we moved me. MS was there, along with my folks and my daughter, her boyfriend and bestie. And it went on without a hitch. I had to scramble for a van, but we were done moving in about three hours.

After that, my folks stuck around and we went to Target and they helped me along ridiculously kindly, tossing in a huge heap of what I needed as a new startup like I was an 18-year-old moving out for the first time.

What struck me was that the move - even with the scramble to find a truck and the picking up of my daughter's boyfriend and the physical exhaustion of up an down and stairs - was actually way easier than my parents taking me shopping (they wanted to put in on my new couch but I'd already bought it, so they offered a necessities trip to Target instead).

At first I figured my thoughts and feelings of borderline breaking down in the middle of Target were just me be being worn: all the physical and emotional exhaustion after moving out of my own house. But I think it was something more.

If you do moving right, it's procedural, systematic. And in my case, it's just moving my stuff from one place to another locally: load up, drive, load out. There is comfort in comfortable things, even if it's just something in a box you can't even identify without opening it, and with something like a bed, it's a swaddling wonder of ease in familiar.

But shopping, shopping after a split sucks; you're just shopping, sure, but you're buying all these items that you need to restart your life - a spatula, pots, and condiments and Swiffers, all these items that remind you with every pickup that it's gone. Forever. You are picking up pieces that have been lost, rebuilding something built and now missing, a structure with half its bricks missing.

And somehow I just wrote that and didn't lose it, though I've been on the cusp all day. Perhaps I passed it buy like on a carousel and I'll be back. Perhaps I'm just too tired to deconstruct tonight. Or, perhaps, the simple act of writing this depressurized the dome.

I still expect it and will for months and know it will happen more than once, but I think for tonight I'm okay to grab a beer and put on Netflix and breathe.

Always: breathe.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

The Keys to the Future

I got the keys this past Friday and I've been taking car loads over each evening in preparation for Saturday's move. Rental insurance, electric switched, internet scheduled.

90% of what I've moved is clothing or books. I guess I don't own that much "stuff." Or I actually do and will be collecting it over the next few weeks bit by bit. For right now I've reduced it to necessities and since my departure is not a door-slam, that's okay.

I don't know, I suppose I'm kind of numb at this point. Not in a dumb or dangerous way; I'm just mentally pushed through Saturday and just want to catch up and have that moment when I'm pretty much moved and by myself and everyone who helped gets a thanks and a goodbye and I close the door and can have a seat and a beer and pop on the TV and just BE in that space, to feel it when I'm over the hump.

Until then, I feel like I'm wandering, floating, going through the motions.

Oh, yeah, and Sunday evening the car I bought two months ago quit on me, so I'm rollin' an Enterprise Special (KIA) while I go through all this. Ugh.

If internet hookup goes well tomorrow, I'll be making my first post from the apartment at some point. Not that I'll have anything magical to convey, just keeping up on the progress.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Side Effects: Today Was Rough by Proxy

I don't mean bad like the whole day was a mess. I had a lot of good things happen at work today, nothing really bad happened. Overall, it was a good day.

But my emotional state makes it difficult in unexpected ways. It's like being prone to acid reflux, or a volcano building pressure. I no longer even need anything from the divorce to hit me; just about anything connected-ly emotional can be enough to corkscrew through that thinner, softer layer.

Today I was going to the grocery store and I heard a story on NPR about a fantastic program training the military on how to recognize and rally behind anyone showing symptoms of depression or - worst case - suicide. I've had my own struggle with depression and suicide over a decade ago (and generally feel pretty good about it on a daily basis), but that was today's drilling tool and I just broke down there in the car for about five minutes. Hell, I'm tearing up now.

And then I gathered myself and went into the store and every aisle was a chore, every item a test. I had to hold so hard to pull back the emotion, but I was hair trigger (turn a corner to have both paths blocked? why not drop a few tears?).

But I made it out without what I would consider a scene.

It's the side effects, the little things as I said the other day. If the BIG thing is looming today, everything else is going to be a challenge.

But better for having gone through it, I suppose. Tomorrow I get my keys. Excited and scared, of course.

Relevant from Armageddon:

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Little Stuff is the Hardest

I've got a list of dozens of things I'll be taking that MS and I have agreed upon.

I made it through the splitting of books and movies without a hitch.

But two weeks ago when I went to fill out the papers to apply for the apartment (even that was fine), I spent the afternoon tooling around my new neighborhood. I felt like a zombie, not sure how to process it. I wandered into Target and bought some needed socks (did you know they make short dark socks?). I purchased a game I didn't need from GameStop just because. I was numb.

And then I wandered around the grocery store just up the road. "This is my Kroger. There are many like it, but this one is mine." I didn't even know why I was there. "Well, I'll have to learn a new layout. Okay, I'll see what their beer selection is like." And as I walked to the checkout with a previously-undiscovered IPA, it hit me: we share a Kroger card; I need a new one.

And my stomach turned inside out as I asked Customer Service for the new cards and form. The woman handed them over like an afterthought and I felt so, so alone. "I'm getting divorced!" I wanted to scream. "I'm ending a relationship that's taken almost thirteen years of my life!"

But the shitty music continued, no one paused to consider me. So I self-checked out and walked back to my car.

It's the little things that burn most, maybe because they're little, maybe because they're too small to be in the big picture plan and when they crop up you're not only so harshly reminded how integrated your lives have been, but disappointed that you didn't see it in the first place.

But the good news is that, right after my almost-meltdown, I walked back to my car, and I felt a little more relieved, a little more complete, a little more in control of the chaos that currently surrounds me.

I guess that's how most of the little things will go: the harsh bit of realization, the adjustment, and the resulting comprehension of success and control. Even if it's little, it's one more step in the right direction. Even if it hurts. Or perhaps, especially if it hurts.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Where Are We Now?

As I begin this long-needed blog, I find myself still living with MS and LadyShambles in the house we've shared for six years now.


I don't make as much as MS, and not nearly enough to pay the mortgage and all the bills, so I'm the moving party. I've been researching and looking for about a month and got the confirmation last week that I was cleared for a new place only 15 minutes away. LadyShambles will be spending half her time with me, so she toured with me and approved the apartment. I get the keys 6/21, move in 6/29.

We'll split any profit minus receipts when she sells.


In progress, but we've wiped out almost all of our debt and are splitting pretty clean.


We've a non-representative friend who is writing up the paperwork. We'll be filing with the courts in the next month.


Some days I feel like I can conquer the world despite all that's happening, that I am awesome incarnate and this is but a stepping stone on my new path towards the future. Other days I collapse into a ball of tears because I get stopped at some light and that was the road I drove for the first time to get up to Cinci and return to my wife after absence and a move.

Today's somewhere in between.