Year-End Reflexing

It's that time of year... What did it all mean? What lies ahead? What IS Cool Whip? Who invented pants?

I read something today that reminded me of years past, and I realized how different life is now than how it was, not so long ago. Ten years can seem like a good chunk of time, but it's easy to forget when it seems like life was always this easy.

Ten years ago I left a craptastic marriage, aka "the past life," with no idea how the future might play out. It was one of the hardest days of my life, but it all worked out, and really well.

It wasn't like I could just announce I was leaving and then go. I'd tried that twice before. It didn't go well. Things were broken, things were thrown - it was made very clear I wouldn't be leaving without a lot of further breakage. So I played along...

During one nasty incident, while I looked like I was nodding along with his ridiculous rant, I was adding up paychecks and time spans. At that point I knew I'd be out in a month.

The very next day, I started packing little bits out with me, storing things at work, and securing storage space a few blocks away. About a month later, he happened to have all-day meetings in the south bay, and that would be my day.

I feigned a headache that morning and said I would be staying home sick. He left, and I watched to make sure his car left the garage and drove away. I ran down to my car and unloaded the stockpile of boxes I had locked in my trunk.

I packed boxes, packed my car, and made multiple trips to the storage unit - from 9 a.m. til 4 p.m., the absolute latest I could comfortably go. Before leaving, I wrote a note then talked to the landlord, who couldn't have been more understanding, thank goodness. And then I drove away.

As I drove over the bridge I called my closest friend at the time and told her I needed a place to crash for a couple of weeks. She said No problem and that we'd go out to dinner to celebrate. She knew what I'd been trying to do for months.

I was terrified and elated at the same time. I was starting a brand new life, totally on my own. Exhilarating and wonderful, but wouldn't have been possible without help.

Thank you Susannah, for opening your heart and home to me. Our nights at Macaroni are still some of my favorite memories. Thank you Bryan - it wouldn't have been possible at all without the great job I had and your support and understanding. And thank you David, Mom, and Dad for being there when I was ready to find you.

Life is so good now. So much to be thankful for, so many people who have helped me in ways they may never know. But the point being, it's always possible to start over. You know, if you want to. And if you don't, then cool - rock on. Good times.