Friday, November 02, 2007

A Little Bit About the Past

You remember back when you were a kid and you thought about the year "2000?" I think I was probably in about 3rd or 4th grade when it entered my consciousness, and I realized I would be 24 in the magical year 2000. Considering that my biggest worries at the time were how to fend off my enemies and getting out of doing homework, I could not fathom what sort of worries could possibly beleaguer someone that old.

As it turns out, the year I was 24 was probably one of my most difficult. Shortly before my birthday I began dating someone I had been interested in about a year previous during one of the many "breaks" in a relationship with someone else (hereafter known as Guitar Guy). For some reason, we thought it would be a good idea to get married immediately. I was not pregnant and neither of us were in need of a green card, but we planned and executed a wedding in three months - complete with nine attendants each, two candlelighters, a ring bearer, a Bible boy and ten "snowflake chuckers" (it was a December wedding).

My husband thought it would be a good idea to move away from the community I had lived in the majority of my life, so we moved to Moyie Springs, Idaho. In January. With one vehicle. And no TV.

Our home was a beautiful little chalet that was open on the bottom floor with the exception of a bathroom. It had a door to the outside on all four sides of the house and a circular wrought iron staircase in the middle. The two upstairs bedrooms were mostly unusable because A) it is hard to carry furniture up a spiral staircase and B) it is hard to heat an upper floor with just a wood stove downstairs.

We placed our four-poster bed in the corner (see diagram) nearest the wood stove and lived miserably there for about two and a half months.

My then-husband had obtained a job before we moved and the place that was employing him had promised me one as well. They lied. I had nothing to do and no way to get there in any case, as he took the truck every morning.

I was alone from about 7 am to 7pm Monday through Friday. I read every book I owned within about the first three weeks. I was also on the internet a lot, as our cell phones only worked in one corner of the house, on a clear day.

I managed to disguise my despair to everyone but my mother, who flew to see us and told my then-husband that he had better move me immediately or there would be a dire situation. She was right. If not for adopting a cat that I spent all my time with daily, I don't know if I would have survived.

We moved to a trailer in Hermiston, Oregon in mid-March for about three weeks while we looked for a place to live in College Place, Washington. By this time we both realized that our marriage had problems beyond removing me from my environment, but he took a job that required him to be gone 4 to 6 nights a week and when he did come home I felt like he was invading my space.

I moved out and we decided to divorce right about the middle of April. I got a job back in my familiar neck of the woods and rented my first apartment of my own. I learned to deal with budgeting my finances and having full responsibility for myself.

I adopted a second cat (I got the first one when we split) and got back together with Guitar Guy (if the truth be told, I was not over him to begin with, one of MANY nails in our marriage coffin).

Our divorce was filed just before I turned 25, and was final in November. We were leading very separate lives by the time the first anniversary of our wedding rolled around.

It took me a long time to be able to tell many of my friends and family that I was getting/had gotten a divorce. I was so embarrassed to admit to so many of them that this thing I had attempted was a failure.

Now seven years later, I am glad for the experiences of that year, but would not want to re-live them for anything.

I am not afraid to get married again, and am anxiously waiting for April 12, 2008 to come!


Ninja Of The Mundane said...

I'd be interested to better understand why you decided to get married at that time ... especially when you were still emotionally connected to someone else. Not judging at all, mind you; I'd just like to comprehend the thought process.

Part of the reason you'll do better the second time is that there's about 83 people who would kill Scott if he dragged you off to an isolated cabin in the mountains. We just about did as much when you two went off to Florida. You'll have a better marriage not only because Scott is a wonderful guy who will do right by you at every turn ... because because he has no choice. If he fucks up, he'll be found in a shallow grave in the woods somewhere for the raccoons and woodchucks to gnaw on.

cate said...

wow...that's quite the story! glad to hear that you are getting married again! Spring weddings are great...i had a May wedding. great time of year for a wedding!

Angela said...

As my uncle once told me, "Ang, everyone needs a practice marriage."

While I may not agree that *everyone* needs a practice marriage, it sure helped me appreciate what I have now!

Marry in May, rue the day. Marry in June, be happy soon.

(Not that I believe any of that crap, but honestly, Hermiston? It never would have worked. I spent four years of hell in Kennewick. That was bad enough.)

Ninja Of The Mundane said...

Maybe not so much a practice marriage as an appetizer ... something to cleanse the nuptial palate.

Jacque Jo said...

I'm so glad I read your blog today. We've got some similarities in our experiences with marriage, and now that I'm working my way out of my "starter marriage" I agree with what you said -- I wouldn't trade a second of it for anything because that's taught me a whole lot about how to do things the next go-round. And as happy as you sound, I can believe there's a next time for me, too. :)