Writing Challenge Day 26: Things You’d Say to an Ex

When I was younger, I’d have written a soliloquy about this, covering the chasms of emotion and trying to hurt them with my words as much as they hurt me. Having grown up a bit and moved on, that is no longer the case. I know exactly what I’d say:

“How are you?”

I mean this not as the common American greeting; I’d want to know where they were in life. What people, events, and experiences shaped them since we last spoke over a decade ago? I’d want to know how they really are; without the facade of social media or a monotone “Fine” which is what I got the one time I asked an ex how they were. I would want to dig deep into the condition of their soul, and yet stay detached as an outside observer.

I don’t believe I’ll ever get the chance to ask, but I sometimes wonder what it would be like if I could. Chances are, their memory of me is so dim, it may not even register anymore.

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Writing Challenge Day 16: Bullet Your Entire Day

  • Woke up without an alarm
  • Fed the kitties
  • Went back to bed
  • Crocheted a bit
  • Made coffee
  • Sat outside and read my devotional and drank coffee
  • Cleaned all the things
    • Table with mineral spirits due to fogging
    • Vacuumed/steam cleaned chairs
    • Cleaned bathroom
    • Straightened kitchen
    • Washed linens to be given away
  • Dehydrated bananas
  • Made marinaded chicken in a crockpot
  • Went to the beach to read/relax/swim
  • Stopped for soft serve strawberry ice cream on the way home
  • Went for a run (which, let’s be honest, was really a walk)
  • Showered
  • Ate some chicken
  • Dehydrated strawberries and pineapple (I’m going to be up till 0100….)
  • Talked to husband who is out of town
  • Poured myself a shot of pineapple rum with lime sparkling water
  • Cleaned the front closet
  • Sat down to write

Forward

I just finished reading Marie Kondo’s “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” and now I understand what all the fuss was about.

And so, I’ve begun to put her methods to use around my house.  I strive to be a minimalist, but I have such a tender heart towards things with sentimental attachment.

And this brought me to my underwear drawer: it was time to face my past.

Stuffed in the back of the drawer were the red satins.  They are beautiful, from Victoria’s Secret: red satin pajamas pants with a button-up top as well as a red satin babydoll nightgown from the same collection.  The pajamas are conservative enough to wear in front of extended family for breakfast; the nightgown is a different story.

Both were a Christmas gift from John after we began sleeping together.  Our tryst had begun only a month before, and with his love language being gifts, this shouldn’t have come as a surprise.  But it did.  He loved the covered up look, hence the pajamas.  I loved the revealing look, hence the babydoll nightgown.  It spoke volumes to this writer’s heart: something for both of us to enjoy.  I thought it was a bit extravagant for a friendship that had a sexual component, but I was still thrilled.  I remember looking at him, thinking, “Is this more serious than I think it is?” I was the one who wanted a relationship; he was the one that always backed away.

This was all years ago, well before I had my toes firmly planted in sand at the beach.  I’ve worn them only a few times since the days of John and I, but they were always there, in the back of my underwear drawer.  They weren’t even folded nicely.

Using Marie’s guidelines, I need to let them go.  It is part of my past and I have moved far beyond that girl that was messing around with John. Why am I keeping them?  I lost touch with John, mostly on purpose; our friendship wasn’t one to bring into a marriage, as we never officially settled our past – if there even was something to settle – I never quite knew where “we” stood.  I know where he lives, I know what he does for a living, and I know he has a serious girlfriend, and in all honestly, that’s all I want to know.  As much as I’d love to meet up with him in a coffee shop and catch up on the last decade, I prefer him in the past. I don’t know the man he is now, as he doesn’t know the woman I am (….or was, I don’t believe he ever fully understood me back then).

But this stupid intimate wear is the last link I have to this deeply rooted amorous friendship.  That’s what Marie made me realize.  Perhaps that’s why I subconsciously never parted with it.

“By handling each sentimental item and deciding what to discard, you process your past.  If you just stow these things away in a drawer or cardboard box, before you realize it, you past will become a weight that holds you back and keeps you from living in the here and now.  To put your things in order means to put your past in order, too.  It’s like resetting your life and settling your accounts so that you can take the next step forward.” (Marie Kondo)

One thing is for sure: I have to get rid of the pajamas.  They were for him, which brings a different connotation to it.  Marie constantly asks in her book, “Does it bring you joy?”

It did.  But now….not so much.  Regret.  Uncertainty.  Vagueness.  And they’re a size too big for my frame.  Definitely not joy.

The nightgown still fits me perfectly and it’s beautiful, I feel so sexy in it!  I will keep it.  While John is nothing but a memory now, all that remains is an alluring piece of fabric.  I am keeping it because I feel joy, it makes me feel good, not because it’s connected to John. I have another piece that was given to me; the way it makes me feel trumps the giver.

The purging and organizing continues.  Here’s to moving forward into the future the Lord has set out for me.  I am ready.  More than ready.

Writing Challenge Day 15: 3 Pet Peeves

  1. PEOPLE WHO YELL AND SCREAM OVER STUPID THINGS THAT ULTIMATELY DO NOT MATTER.  If you’re ranting and raving about something, have a good reason.  Do not completely lose yourself to something as inconsequential as a fork was in the spoon holder.  (I have actually witnessed this.)
  2. GREENBRIARS.  These stupid vine weeds complete with thorns and rhizomes (think ginger root-like roots) have taken over my yard and every year it is a act of war to remove these things, manually, with a shovel.  I am thankful they do not fight back.
  3. DRIVING SHORT DISTANCES.  If it’s under a mile, I will walk. I do this all the time for errands and getting lunch at work.  Co-workers from other departments are constantly asking me if I need a ride because they saw me walk to the store, which is 1/8 of a mile away (like 700 feet!).

Christmas Eve: A Silent Night

The clock struck 12 and I was still frosting cookies this Christmas Eve.  I made a huge amount of cookies for the Christmas banquet at one of the homeless shelters here in town.  My only regret is that I ran out of the good made-from-scratch frosting and ended up using some old store bought frosting I had in the pantry.  It didn’t taste nearly as good as what I made from scratch.

My husband was asleep upstairs, so I had myself a silent night, which is unusual for me when I’m in the kitchen.  The first few verses of the song silent night were running through my head, left over from the service at church tonight.  In reality, the gentle hum of the refrigerator and the purr of the fish tank pump were the melody in this silent symphony playing.

John Acuff once tweeted that we get to an age where we stop asking “What’s next?” and start asking “What is now?”  I’m there.  I’ve been there for awhile, despite still clinging onto the next thing.

I was hoping the next thing would be the exact opposite of silent.  And yet, here I am, on Christmas Eve, with a house so silent, that it would sound the same if no one was home.

And so far, the silence continues.  Perhaps for the rest of my born days.  Perhaps this is just an interlude before the volume is turned way up.  I can only guess; the Lord is taking care of that part.  And while I have no idea what is in His will for me, I continue to trust, though blindly stumbling into the future.

And rather quickly, I might add.