I bought a ring on Tuesday. Something I had been thinking about doing for a while now. It’s very pretty. A simple band with many colors. I can turn it to show different colors on different days. It’s not a mood ring in the traditional sense. But, my own version of a mood ring.
My ring is very important to me. Significant. I watch people shopping as I sit by the window. I see a purple car driving by and think about my friends across the street at the vegetarian joint. Sitting here sipping hot water and nibbling on a blueberry muffin at one of my favorite coffee shops I’m alone but not lonely. I love seeing the people on the other side of the window. A new friend rides by on his bike. Bald head and olive green puffy coat. He makes me smile. I have added him to my grouping of adorable ones. We make the world go round. Petite woman in a white snowman sweater. Rotund man in large orange vest. Black leather jacket, tan pants 50 something thin man talks on phone listening through earbuds, walking slowly back and forth -smiling. Two college student Asian guys pass by the window. Sunshiny beautiful day. Spooning up the last crumbs of my muffin. Tasting sweet. Guy who works here leaves. I like his nice posture and the way he carries himself confidently as he crosses the street, moving onto other things.
Last night I was crying. Sobbing in the car on the way home from my yoga class. After seeing a picture online, I had the realization that I never had anyone in my life who was really there for me. A cheerleader and support for my emotional well-being. Not a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, teacher. I think my husband and I were there for each other for awhile. But since I had never had anyone there for me in childhood, I didn’t feel it was safe to totally open my soul to him. It was not safe to totally open my soul to anyone. I’m ecstatic to say that has changed. I’m ready for love. For that real, healthy love that I now know through new friendships and a few old. I hope I have given my sons what I never had. I know my oldest hasn’t always felt accepted by me. Our energies were so different that we often had trouble connecting. And I had trouble being there for both of them emotionally and with in my presence for a period of time after the separation/divorce. If I could change that I would.
Cute guy on a bicycle rides by. He looks around my age. Bright yellow jacket, black cycling tights, yellow helmet. He rides on by. Darn.
I have gradually switched my energy. I no longer experience the fear of abandonment. One of the classic side effects of growing up in an alcoholic household. If you listen to ACA dogma, they will tell you that you are destined to be stuck with this and many other side effects. The organization helped jump start me in recreating my world, but I moved away from it as I was not interested in repeating the laundry list every week. I was interested in rewiring my system, doing some very deep work, in order to replace the items on the list that no longer served me. The beliefs, the feelings, the behaviors. Now if someone doesn’t call me, or text me back, I don’t revert to that scared little girl. It isn’t the default to think that that person no longer loves me, no longer wants to see me, thinks I am dumb, or the like. I no longer feel hurt or lonely if a prospective love interest does not contact me. I’m starting to accept that there are all kinds of people in the world. Some of them aren’t skilled in the social arena – realm. I’m learning things like – it’s not always about me and don’t try to figure other people out. I’m learning there are some really weird people out there, and some really wonderful ones. I’m learning how to speak up and say what I feel and what I need without fear of rejection. I had been conditioned to expect emotional rejection when I shared my wants, needs, and feelings. Now I have a sense of the kind of people I want in my life. The people who want honest open connections.
My ring feels good and right on my finger. It’s a little loose today. It will probably be a little tight in the summer. Fine black man in a nice suit, white woman in a long wool coat with a fun, colorful scarf and black fedora. I want to be them. That couple. My ring represents something. The colors. The band. It represents the new me. I had a ring on that finger for 23 years. Twenty four I think. I still had it on when I met Brian, almost a year to the date of my separation. I imagine it felt awkward for him to hold the small hand of a stranger, feeling a recognizable stone pressing into his fingers. I’m not exactly sure why I kept it on for so long. I think it was a sense of security. It is no wonder he finally confessed over one of our long distance phone calls that he was uncomfortable because my divorce was not yet final. That connection did not last long. Now I wonder what I am doing wrong sitting here still single. I’ve done the work. And continue to grow myself. I’m looking for that soul mate. Someone online told me, “He’s looking for you too.” I had never though of that before that moment. I tried to sit back and let him come to me. I wonder where he is. I’ve tried dating. It has been a great learning experience but not something I particularly have enjoyed. It takes a lot of energy.
My ring provides comfort. Pride for all the work I have done. It provides something concrete in place of the phantom feeling I’ve have for the past three years, since removing the ring after returning home from Boulder. After seeing Brian for the last time. Last week marked the fourth anniversary of moving out of the house my sons and I had shared with my husband, their father, and into our new home, and beginning our new life. I think that is another reason for the sobbing last night. It’s a big deal. My heart breaks for my sons. I don’t like it that I was the one who split up the family, even though it was necessary and the best for everyone. Nobody wants to be the bad guy.
I think it is time to shift from watching people to engaging with people, as I watch a mother with her toddler son engaging with a homeless man. That man was a baby once, with a mother. I wonder where she is now. If her heart is breaking. Or if it was so broken when he was born that he ended up on the streets begging for money as a way to fill the void in his heart. The hole in his soul.
This human experience and its complexities are way to much for my mind to comprehend.
I’ll go shopping now. Try to offer some sort of reconciliation to my sons this Christmas. And, oh yeah, hopefully find that car I’ve been searching for.