It’s been six and a half months since the love of my life died, and it feels like a minute has gone by, time has stood still for me, my worst nightmare has come true, the ultimate abandonment, but somehow I get out of bed in the morning, brush my teeth, and sigh myself through each day. I have always felt lonely and sad, and no matter how many people surround me, there has been a slight panic and tightness in my chest even as I say a breezy goodbye to a lunch date. Now, the universe mocks me, as if to say: “This is real loss, this is despair, this is what it feels like to be alone and the rest of your life has been an overreaction: now is the true meaning of sad….” My worst self feels a small sense of relief, as horrible as that sounds, because my moral compass is gone, and nobody is checking up on me as I have random, meaningless sex and do other things normally reserved for college years, and I don’t have to explain myself to that caring soul on the East Coast. I have done some things my Dead Ex would have been proud of since he died, I begrudgingly admit, such as spending countless hours revising my novel that has been paid for and never published, and I am skinny as a rail and my gaunt face is finally finding its crooked balance, but mostly I have spent the last half of a year flailing around helplessly, making mistakes and hoping against all hope that there is no afterlife or any way for him to witness my downward spiral from under the snap pea leaf or through the eyes of a baby robin.

As much as I want to just squander away the rest of my days in the soothing embrace of victimhood, or the haze of wine and prescription medication, I cannot because, alas, there is a guy. A really cute guy with blondish curly hair and blue sweatpants with two red stripes running down the sides who walks his two biggish dogs on the beach every morning and every early evening, and not knowing him at all, save for a friendly wave every day, seems to be reason enough to blow dry my hair and change out of my Dead Ex’s double XL wool sweater every so often into a small tee shirt that shows off the new tiny waist I have acquired from the Grief Diet. This guy, who I have seen every day since I moved to the beach last May, and who, for all I know, could be married, gay or boring, is my reason for living right now. I refuse to talk to this guy because I find happiness in not knowing anything about him, just as I find some solace in the fact that I have no idea where my Dead Ex is right now. Hopefully my Dead Ex is languishing between some tall stacks of rare books somewhere, and the Beach Guy is single and has a penchant for skinny girls with sunken eyes who haven’t slept for months. I am happy to leave these questions unanswered.

 

D GIRL‘s last column (8.17.10) is here.

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