Thursday, June 20, 2013

Di·vor·cés: The Finale

A few weeks prior the week that went to hell, as Goomba was finalizing his divorce plans with his ex, and thus he was calming down, I invited him to wine fest the first weekend of June. He was mostly alright during the day; keeping the lurking at a minimum – even when I pseudo-flirted with a guy in a Biggest Loser hat, learning he didn’t actually used to be a fat guy, but played for Halloween. Upon stepping into the port-o-potty I called out, “I hope you fit!”

He opened the door to poke his head back out of the toilet box and announce, “You’re adorable.” Even from the confines of an outdoor shit hole, I have decided this is my favorite compliment.

Later in the evening, we decided to go to the bar. Since Goomba was already there, he would be joining us. Everyone showered but him and that bothered me, as it was 90 degrees that day and ew. Attempting to talk him into showering turned into a bit of a power struggled, but I managed to get him in there with an irritated and likely unfounded “sure”, when he asked if that meant he’d get to cuddle later.

When we got to the bar, I knew everything was coming to a head: He moved his seat to be closer to mine, asked me to dance, and brooded when I said 'no thank you'. To tell the truth, I wanted to dance, but not with him. I wanted to dance with my girlfriends, but I knew if I did, since I had declined his invitation, that it would be the beginning of WWIII. Instead, I sat against the wall, again declining his requests to dance. And watching him once drink my drink and a second time scolding him for touching it; couples share drinks and I was well aware he was testing his limits. He had reached them. After this, I excused myself to the patio and sat on a wall by myself, talking to people who squatted against the wall with me and trying to get rid of creeps that wouldn’t leave me alone. And then the one deterrent thought he had a chance to take me home. I was at my wit's end.

Soon after, the bar was closing. Thank god, we were getting to leave. Everyone was heading back. I’d made it through, I thought. Conflict avoided.

And then we got outside.

Once outside, I had my shoes in my hands. I was standing all day and my feet weren’t interested in them. Goomba asked if I wanted him to hold my shoes for me. What an odd request, of which I politely declined. And that’s when he lost it. He started cursing up and down the sidewalk and calling me a bitch while dropping f-bombs like it was, in fact, WWIII. If I thought Chachi was bad, he had nothing on this blitzkrig.

BECAUSE I WOULDN'T LET HIM HOLD MY SHOES. I'll give you a minute to process that. ...

This is when I lost it. Perhaps it was Goomba. Or perhaps it was the events of the entire week – or even the past four months, but I was finished. I found my voice again and there wasn’t a damn thing passive about it. Is that who I want to be at 2am at the age of 29 in the middle of Arlington? No, absolutely not. But you can only poke a snake for so long before it bites back.

I quickly composed myself after he began to flip out in return. I asked him to look at me so I could calm him in the middle of the city. He refused. Fuck you filled every ounce of my body and flowed through my veins. There was no coming back. That amount of disrespect perhaps trumping them all. I gave up and walked away.

A few moments later he trotted up to me and to tell me he was looking at me now in what seemed to be an attempt to place his eyeballs on my face. “I don’t care. It’s too late,” I responded. And as he continued to try to get my attention, as the group of us were heading back to GFN's, I made a quiet, complete U-turn to land myself at 2:30am on a bench by myself, away from it all – until Ginger found me.

She came to sit with me; me and my wit’s end. In a few moments, three guys came by: An Asian, a tall black man and a black man with a bag of candy. This sounds like the start of a really weird porn.

Ginger partook in the candy while I learned that the tall black man was recently divorced. It was quickly obvious that he hated his ex wife about as much as I was fed up with divorced men in that moment. We took a minute to understand each other: She cheated on him and he hated her for that. And then I took a moment to explain my theory on cheating: Nothing ever breaks because of cheating, people cheat because it’s broken – and that’s the easy way out. You can point the finger and blame it on that one event: You cheated. But it's rarely just one person's fault. Cheating is so much easier than saying: I love you, but not enough to trump our problems and find happiness.

He was shocked. They all were. For a minute, he softened. And behind his eyes I could see that a baby revelation was born.

That whiplash of broken love goes both ways. And the people behind divorces need to take their time to think about why they are angry or what they’re attempting to escape. And the single people that divorced people find to be such a treat or fit or funny or perfect or there’s-a-reason-we-met-again-after-eight-years, need to be weary and aware of the danger that lurk beneath hidden anger, hurt, despair, confusion and a stunted emotional growth.

I’m done with the divorcés now. They need to find their own way. I can’t allow myself to be dragged into their need for help and fulfillment at the cost of myself. I will keep my 'boredom' and wait for the next big thing. And that’s so much better than World War Three.

I've been decompressing for a few weeks now. And eventually Chachi apologized haphazardly, while reposting and tagging me in my own photo from a year ago. College Chicago has never been much a bother, but perhaps shows the quieter side of the suffering. Goomba has been sitting quiet, although attempted to send a few texts, emails and facebookings like nothing happened. And Potato and Derp are gone for good, by their own accounts and with no argument here. For the record, I never saw the random bench guys again.

The great thing about being single is that you know for certain you're not with the wrong person; wasting time. And whatever disrupts single person peace may quickly be left behind. There is no WWIII. There's no such thing as boring; it's just a buffer.


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