The weekend was a test of willpower. Not to marry him- all of those plans have been cancelled officially and guests notified. Friday, BC convinced me to join him for 80’s night at Lava, where I watched a cougar in her 40’s dance around in a sundress and cardigan from first cocktail all the way until the end of the evening when she was groping a man in pleated pants against a speaker and left with him hand-in-hand for later night fun all smiles. I promptly informed BC that I was not allowed to be out in a sundress and cardigan grinding by 22 year olds. He promised to maintain my dignity well into my woman-of-a-certain-age years.
We moved on for a night cap at a quieter bar where he calmly and rationally told me that I was doing the right thing. We had gotten so caught up in conversation, that we carried on to the nearby after hours dive for a few more. Which lasted about 30 minutes until the ex showed up at the same place. We nodded, acknowledged, and BC promptly whisked me home. The ex and I aren’t doing public melodrama, and Pittsburgh’s a small enough city that we’re bound to run into one another even with the best intentions not to. I just didn’t have it in me to be in the same space and not with each other.
Saturday, thanks to a mild 80’s and bourbon hangover and lingering gloom, I stayed in the bed til afternoon, then gathered my books, sat and read until evening and decided when a massive thunderstorm hit to stay on the couch all night. The girly girls forced It’s Called a Break-Up, Because It’s Broken on me, so now I am not only newly single and 31, I also read self-help books on Saturday nights. While the tone of the book is a little too “Cosmo quiz” for me, I have to admit all the reinforcement of everything I know deep down about letting this go and moving on helps.
On Sunday I was wide awake at 9 am, so I pulled the sheets off the bed and hit the laundromat for some physical cleaning to go along with my mental housekeeping. When I got back, I just couldn’t stand the bedroom for some reason, so I dragged everything out into the hallway, tugged and pulled, and rearranged, brought in some bookshelves and tucked his nightstand into the spare room. I never realized that I hated the way the room was arranged- and I like it so much better now. I pulled down the dark brown curtains we bought so he could sleep days and work nights and replaced them with white sheers. I ditched the brown duvet cover and left the white duvet plain with the quilt my grandmother made at the foot of the bed. For some reason, there is a bizarre amount of pink in the room now (and I have never been a Barbie girl, trust me). But it also feels clean and different and mine.
The ex and I had plans for a logistics talk about bills and his move over dinner in public- all the better to keep us both from turning it into a cry fest. As I put it, I am so tired of crying and from crying that I might have passed out if we had to chat at the house. But then there were tornado warnings and the plan to walk to the little place down the street and sit outside got scrapped. We both sat there for a few minutes, and I felt another TALK coming on. And I just didn’t have it in me.
So, I grabbed my keys and the ex. And hit the movie theatre to see The Happening. Because, I wanted to be somewhere where we could just sit and not talk and not think about anything for a while. I wanted to be in the dark. I wanted buttered popcorn and a giant Diet Coke and noise that wasn’t coming from either one of us. It was probably a risky move. But it worked. By the time the movie was over, we could go home and sit and talk without all the nervous energy planning for a scheduled conversation appointment. We talked like grown-ups. And without tears (at least from me- he got a little misty and walked out of the room at one point).
And when it was all said and done, I went upstairs to my brand new bedroom with the clean sheets and the fan where I like it (and all that pink) and slept the sleep of the dead.