paradise, interrupted

I spent the better part of today marveling at how quickly things can change.  It’s like you’re moving along just fine, thank-you-very-much, when WHAM!  suddenly you hit a bump in the road that spins you around and leaves you sprawled across the pavement.

Earlier this week, I wrote optimistically about how different this trip to Cancun was going to be from previous years… how I was finally happy in the important ways and ready to enjoy a peaceful and relaxing and rejuvenating week with my children and family.  Sure, work was unbelievably stressful, but every other part of my life seemed to be falling into a really comfortable, productive, healthy rhythm.

Or maybe not.

For nearly 13 years, my emotional life was mostly predictable and constant.  It wasn’t good, but it was definitely not uncertain.  These days, I feel like I genuinely and without exaggeration never know what the day will hold.  I suppose that could be exciting, but mostly it just feels puzzling to me. The last couple of days have left me once again shaking my head at the perpetual uncertainty of my life these days, because, apparently, life’s little twists don’t take a vacation.  Even when you do.

Not all of life’s surprises are bad, of course.  For instance, this week my work situation has improved dramatically in my absence, alleviating an enormous amount of stress that had been plaguing me for weeks and interfering with my sleep and health and relationships.  It is an unexpected blessing and one for which I am very grateful.

But, almost simultaneous with that improvement came the disintegration (yet again!) of my parenting relationship with my ex.  After a couple of months of peaceful negotiating and working together on parenting issues for the children, he resumed his “Me First” stance and then became petulant when I pointed out to him that by ignoring a suggestion of the girls’ therapist, he wasn’t thinking in the best interests of his children.  He often becomes petulant with me these days when we argue.  I think it’s because after 13 years of me quietly going along with whatever edict he forced upon us, I am finally standing up for myself and our girls.  This unfamiliar territory can’t feel good to him and his verbal tantrums call to mind all variety of toddler behavior.

So, it would seem that even when he is not here in Cancun with me, my ex-husband still knows how to ruin my Mexican vacations for me.  How comforting to know that some things never change.

But, in fairness, he is not the only man of my acquaintance causing me to reach often for a margarita refill.  Just the other morning, while missing him terribly, I managed to get a phone call in with James.  But instead of leaving me with the warm gooey feeling of butterflies and yummy infatuation, my dollar-per-minute conversation left me cold and deflated after hearing that I apparently wasn’t being missed to nearly the same degree.  So instead of happy and warm and appreciated, I simply felt ridiculous.  Again.

And then there’s Annie’s latest boyfriend, who ended their relationship this week with a single, formal phone call and who is now mysteriously unavailable for any further information-gathering or understanding of what, precisely, went wrong.  I will simply never understand how anyone goes from “I think I’m falling for you” to ignoring a polite voice mail asking for further clarification in the span of a couple of weeks.  I just don’t get it.  Once I’m intimate with somebody, I don’t start treating them like they are disposable just because they go from “current” to “ex” boyfriend.   It’s called grace, people.  Use it.

The only upside to all this drama is that I know the pendulum will swing again.  I’ve no idea in which direction or with what outcome, but I’m pretty damn sure I won’t spend much time in this particular emotional space — even if I wanted to.   The only predictable thing about my post-divorce life is its chronic unpredictability.

Oh, well.  At least I can pass the time waiting with another margarita.

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7 Comments

Filed under divorce, general musings, relationships, single mom

7 responses to “paradise, interrupted

  1. Now, there’s a thought: drinking.

    I’m in.

    Could you order me some kind of fruity margarita? I don’t mind if it has one of those silly umbrellas in. Maybe it will help smooth out the unpredictability … or I’ll stop worrying about it. 🙂

    • SD, it would be my pleasure to share my margarita time with you. I could use a partner as I silently contemplate the waves and the breeze and try to locate that delicious space of momentary peace free from expectation of the other shoe falling. Again.

      They have something here called The Happy Monkey. It is lots of liquors with banana and chocolate thrown in for good measure. Consider yourself monkey-ed. 😉

      • Wow, one of those and I’ll be proposing to anyone! I don’t drink enough these days to have more than one, so that single Happy Monkey will definitely be enough to smooth out all the troubles!

        Sometimes we need that time away by ourselves.

        Sometimes there’s nothing better than sharing that time with someone. Even a friend. To share the breezes, the sunsets (I’m assuming you miss all the sunrises!), the people-watching, the endlessly-varying ocean, the local culture.

        My own co-parenting was very simple for 6 months: I did it all. Now that the girls had a big row while I was away in Australia, my runaway wife wants to have just ONE of the girls stay with her during the school week (I asked about weekends, with the TWO younger girls, but I’m told this would limit my runaway wife’s ability to have fun going out all the time). Sonny co-parenting is not just going downhill but actively causing or extending a schism between my girls..*sigh* Make some room for me…I’ll start with a small drink so I don’t start proposing to everyone too quickly! 🙂

  2. Mmmm, I know exactly you mean, it’s so easy to get rattled, swing can go 180° from good to pants so quickly…
    It does bother immensely, I wish I was more grounded!
    As for relationships with co-parents, if they were strained before your separation, they’re hardly likely to improve afterwards. That’s a painful truth I’m also learning. How depressing! Think I’ll have a margarita too, please 🙂
    x

    • Ah, grounded…. I used to be (or appear to be) such. People used to comment that to me all the time and seek my advice and company for just that reason. Not so much anymore.

      Thanks for the relationship reminder: we’re not “supposed” to get along, right? We’re divorced, so this is natural and our peaceful moments are the less natural. We did not have a contentious relationship, however, so discord and conflict still feels strange to me with him. Of course, the reason for the peace between us was primarily my constant surrender to his needs, wants and ideas. It’s easy to get along peacefully when one partner is nothing more than a reflection of the other’s needs, wants and desires. 🙂 I think it’s somewhat jarring to both of us now that I have resumed having opinions and ideas of my own. LOL.

      Welcome to my blog. Nice to see you.

      TPG

  3. wordsfallfrommyeyes

    Sounds like you’re having a great time – I wouldn’t let the ex spoil that. The pictures were perfectly placed.

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