So, my friend Tersia suggested I list some things that have been positive about this journey from married to single again, and I think she’s right. Enough with the sad sack stuff, right?
One glaring change has been the atmosphere of my home. I won’t say that Chef and I didn’t have a nice atmosphere in our home. I will say, instead, that the peaceful tone in it was bought at a high price when it came to me. Chef is a passionate person, and that passion can be good or it can be really bad. I was forever “pulling him off the ledge” about something or another. These days, the peace I feel around me is as easy to maintain as a smile.
Another change I’m enjoying is the freedom that comes with being alone. When I want to go somewhere, I just go. There are no phone calls wanting to know where I am or why I’m not doing this or that. There’s just me, and that is a great feeling.
I like being in charge of every penny I make. I no longer have to pull rabbits out of hats so Chef can go on a club run, or to pay for overpriced haircuts and random motorcycle accessories. I’m good at it, but I hate it.
I am starting to enjoy anticipating what the future may hold for me. I doubt very seriously God walked me through all this for nothing. He’s got a plan, and I’m excited to see what it is.
I like animals. I’ve always fed strays and adopted the occasional cast-off, all much to the chagrin of Chef. He’d often tell me that he needed at least a year without any pets or children around to be truly content. We’ve never had a whole year without one pet, and I heard about that plenty. Add in that I bought extra food for the strays, and his brain would bleed. Now, as long as I can afford it, I can take care of whatever animals I want without fear of reprisal.
I love never having to sit through shows I can not stand, like COPS. I have always HATED that show, from the annoying opening theme song to the snotty attitudes of most of the officers and the genuinely sad people that they tend to catch doing stupid stuff. What is the entertainment value in watching people who are having a particularly crappy life get busted?? For me, there is none.
I hate horror movies. Real life is horror-able enough for me. I have never once enjoyed feeling scared or grossed out. First of all, the plot lines for most of this genre is generally unbelievable. It seems to always involve some moron doing something that probably not one human being on the face of the earth would actually do — ie: some girl walking in her underwear down to a pitch black basement to check out some noise she heard, alone — and you have me completely mystified. Really? My opinion is she was just too stupid to live anyways. Chef likes that kind of stuff. I watched one with him in 2006 because he literally picked a fight with me about it, and to this very day, I still freak out about it when I think about it. NEVER.AGAIN.
I eat whatever I want to eat. Chef is an actual chef. I grew up poor. He uses saffron and truffles in stuff; I like Hamburger Helper, pork chops, and boxed macaroni and cheese. He’s probably a great chef, but I like simple cuisine, and I’ve swallowed some things past gag reflexes just to not offend him. He liked to experiment a lot, and I was his test subject. Plus, try cooking for a chef. I am a decent cook when it comes to the general population of men, but not anywhere near Chef-Level. I don’t miss that routine at all.
I like the knowledge that I can move to anywhere in the world I want to. Once upon a time, I was offered a position with NASA taking pictures of the moon. Hardly lucrative, but I desperately wanted to move to Arizona to take the position, but Chef’s career took precedence, and I had to turn it down. It was the right decision back then, but that is no longer something I need concern myself with again. I’m free as a bird.
Despite how my on-line presence might seem these days, I’m quite content. I feel peaceful in the knowledge that the worst is over. My conscience feels clean about having tried to save my marriage and my friend and husband. Forgiveness isn’t just an act of my will; I feel it too. I’ve accepted that Chef may never understand how this all hurt me and I’m okay with that. For the longest time, I desperately felt a need to have him understand every painful action or word. Now, I’d rather he didn’t. What would be gained by two of us hurting like that? Nothing. God knows what He’s doing. He doesn’t need my help.
I’ve forgiven Tanya, his partner in all of this, as well. She’s moved on and has a new relationship, and we have no contact whatsoever anymore. I’m thankful for that. She is easier to become bitter about than Chef was, probably because I never loved her in the first place, and accepting her betrayal was simply easier to process. In the end, she was a professing Christian who had this very public affair with a married man right in front of the people she was trying to “save”. She had an audience who watched her help destroy a family; one member of it, Rebekkah, was supposedly her friend. That’s some pretty bummer seeds she planted in the garden of her own life, and no matter what, we all get to reap what we’ve sown. The important thing for me, though, is to butt out of God and her business. I try to never wish people get what they deserve because I sure don’t want God to hammer me with justice instead of mercy. No one has led a perfect, unselfish life, and that includes me. Instead, I pray for mercy for her. I hope to have mercy from Him in my life as well.
There’s a million small reasons I’m really getting a kick out of life these days, as well. I like “Gas-Free” bedrooms, toilet seats that are always down, and no cleaning of urine spots around the toilet. I hate mayonnaise with a passion, to the point that touching the jar grosses me out. Frankly, there is just something unappetizing about white food. I only started eating ranch dressing a few years ago. Mostly, white food doesn’t come anywhere near my mouth. So, making Chef a sandwich was always a chore. He likes mayonnaise on everything, including peanut butter. Oh gross!!
When I finally get a house, which should happen this week, I’m going to be about as content and happy as I’ve ever been in my entire life. For that, I thank God. It truly is over, and I’m speeding on ahead to the next chapter. If there is one glaring mistake Chef made in all of this (like there weren’t millions!), it would be letting me get used to all the really cool stuff about being single. Now, it’s going to take someone really, really worth it to make me give all this stuff up!!