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Jun '09

Diary of a Divorcee Part III

It is Saturday evening, the sun is going down on what was a very hot, breezy day on the Third Coast, and I – Ta Da – processed all four Memory boxes. Whittled four to one and recycled two boxes. The small rectangular box replaced the old bible box that held my teenage and early twenties love letters; more on those later. No tears, some sadness, and many slips of paper put aside for later. It was overwhelming and the project took the better part of the day, but it is done, it is done, it is done.

I began randomly and it turned out to be a middle-of-the-relationship Memory box. I had forgotten how many cards and notes husband number three had written through the years. Reading these loving missives I continued to ponder why our marriage ended. I mean, I know why it ended, but how did we get from those love notes to here? I, by choice, have not spoken with him since I hung up on him when he called at work, pre-lay off, to inquire about some recipes he wanted. What he really wanted was the 2008 tax information on the house we were forced to Short Sale because he wanted the divorce. Another live and learn story, but it is the boxes that have clogged my energy this past week, and considering those boxes held fifteen years of my life, no wonder I was hesitant.

I found many invitations to weddings, mostly my grown sons’ friends, too many funeral announcements, my friends, match books, swizzle sticks, wine corks, paper umbrellas from drinks at the Shady Grove in Austin. We used to say, “that is where we fell in love.” I found, what to me is, a precious photograph of my dearly departed Monroe, on the front porch of the Bungalow in Brenham.  Monroe 001 Monroe came to Corpus Christi with us, but died in May of 2006. I still miss her. She was a really sweet, lovable cat that had a few hard knocks in her life, too. Like when we adopted Remy and she exiled herself to the attic at the farm for one entire year.

I found things that puzzled me – no idea why they were saved – those items went straight to recycling. I found a garter tossed at some wedding I attended. It meant so much to me I put it in the memory box, but I have NO idea who the bride was. I wore it the rest of the afternoon, high on my thigh, while I worked on the boxes.

I am still feeling the urge to go dig all the cards out of the recycling bin that I tossed. I read each of them. Weighed their content and pondered if they would be of any future use. I can be brutal when it comes to pitching stuff and I do not want to regret the purge in a week, month or year. Loving tributes. Many words of thanks for being so real, so honest, so loving, so open, so scared, so passionate, so me. Well, the me that was sitting on the bed touching each of these items, telling myself it will be less for my son to go through when I die, was experiencing feelings of anger, more than sadness. Angry that I thought this was a marriage for a lifetime. Truly. We would weather any storm. Ha. Jokes on you, Carol. He had his fingers crossed from the moment the wedding date was set. He loved me with conditions, and all of those cards and love notes were actions of a man that loved what he had, then set out to change it all.

I had to set aside all of the love notes. I could not, honestly, deal with those in the same day as the boxes. I did add some cards, with hand written notes, to the pile of notes and tied them up in a red ribbon. All of these are for another day – some future consideration, but I made terrific headway and I do feel lighter. He has no power over me any more. I never again have to do what he says he thinks I should be doing. All of his power is gone.  As long as I remember this when I have the time to address the final tidy little package. Maybe I’ll share, maybe they will find their way to the landfill, but I tackled the biggest part of the project and am no worse for wear.

Now to address the tattoo on my right hip which has a banner and his name . . . . . live and learn.


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