Ever watch a movie and then afterward you’re all like, I want to be that, him, her, that life?
Right now. I am Holly Kennedy from P.S. I Love You.
I’ve been on this weird movie kick. In the last 7 years I can count how many times I’ve wanted to go to Hollywood Video and rent a movie on one hand. Twice. This week.
It started with The Ex’s Netflix thing where you can watch movies online. ONLINE. Movies from the comfort of my own laptop and headphones. Shaun doesn’t have to be a part of my weird documentary phase, or old movie kick..or movies that remind me of a part of my life that has since been wiped away. I can pick whatever I wanted and didn’t have to hear, ‘Chick flick’ or ‘Why a movie on the children of Alabama that were killed in a church?” Just because, that’s why. I’m one of THOSE people. I’m one of those strange people that rip through different types of things and YES, I am exactly that person that takes a bite of the chocolates in the box and decides if she likes the taste…and If I don’t, I put it back and hope someone else doesn’t mind that I didn’t. Guess what? People don’t mind. Shaun doesn’t really care either. He doesn’t care that I will sit down and read every single James Patterson book in a series and then decide to never read another James Patterson book because for no other reason than I feel like I am betraying THAT series I fell in love with.
It’s strange to walk through your life with someone for so long and then it’s over. Tonight Dan’s parent’s showed up. For those of you just getting on the R&O express, Dan is my ex-husband. I haven’t seen his parents since years before our split in 2000. They are doing there tour of children and grandchildren that started in NC, through Colorado, California, Ohio and then back to NC. They are making some gas companies VERY happy as they move along in their 1970’s van across the states.
They never liked me, his mom I mean. I overheard her talking about this ‘young’ teenager Dan brought with him for a visit. Of course, I didn’t know at the time they already knew that he had gotten a girl pregnant. I was certain that information had not been told to them, since I had just found out.
Honestly, I don’t think they ever really liked me. Now that I think about it, they didn’t. I was 10 years younger than their son and he was making a huge mistake. How was I to know? I was a young teenager.
So tonight I watched them from across the dinner table. They are older now, of course. Her husband hasn’t changed at all. For the most part neither has she. He still makes sure she’s eating at the right time so she can take her pills and she still lets us all know that it’s time to get back home because he’s tired. It’s been 18 years and they are the same couple they were that first time I spent the weekend in their guest bedroom doing unnameable things to their son in the name of youth and stupidity.
You would think it was strange that I went and had dinner with my ex-husband and his family tonight. Perhaps it was, but then it dawned on me why it didn’t feel even a little bit awkward.
See, Dan’s mom left his dad when he was finishing up high school. His dad remarried. By the time I was around, I guess they had all worked out the kinks. I never once saw his mom and dad fight. They actually got along. There were times when his mother would come to visit and we all would sit around together.
It was HIS parents that taught me that it’s okay to get along. I was a product of a two parent household. I didn’t learn this on my own.
Duh! I spent my the first day of married life in a gazebo with his Dad and wife and his Mom and her husband laughing and talking as if it was so normal for ex’s to get along. How did I forget that? HIS mother, the one that hated me gave me the greatest thing I have right now…no, not the ex-husband and his brats…the ability to see past all the bullshit for the sake of being happy and making others around me comfortable.
So today I feel like I have been given a second chance at something. Does that mean that the urge to rip out Shaun’s vocal cords with my bare hands while he soundly sleeps next to me? Nooooooo. Of course not. Does it mean that I instantly have trust again? Does it mean that I feel 100% better and that sunshine is going to fly out of my ass? Nooooooo, pretty sure all those things with the exception of the sunshine will take time.
I want to be able to forgive again. He forgives me for so much. Like how I never put the toilet paper on the role. How even though there is a dresser and walk in closet, our clothes are in 4 different laundry baskets on the bedroom floor. I forgive him for the fact that I have to always ask him to take the bathroom garbage out and the sprinkler head in the front yard is broken again and we have a water fall down our driveway every night at 10pm because of it. I want to forgive again because some days I get on the floor and put the clothes away or take the trash out myself. I want to forget all of it because sometimes he will put the paper on the toilet roll or will make 4 trips to Home Depot before he just throws his hands in the air and allows me to call Dan to figure out why the sprinkler doesn’t work.
It’s for the fact that we both notice that we give and take in this marriage.
So tonight…I will not rip out his vocal cords. Tomorrow is another day and that option is right back on the table. See, those there are baby steps…and I am taking them.