I think I'm depressed. Despite all the sunshine, and ocean, and palm trees, my head is not in a good space. It's static...and that has started to become more problematic. I think the cobwebs started developing when I stopped exercising regularly. I caught bronchitis at the end of July. Then I went to DC -- in August. The month everyone else runs screaming from the swampy, stagnet heat, I returned to finalize my divorce. And Murphy and his fucking law bitch-slapped me that very day.
About an hour after finalizing my divorce (which was very humiliating, BTW. ...nothing like stating for the record, "Yes your honor, it is correct that I failed at my marriage." For an over-achiever, publically stating you failed at anything is a worst nightmare.), my officially-ex-husband called to let me know that my sweet little coonhound, Kiera, had a tumor wrapped around her heart. It was pushing up against her lungs and making it difficult for her to breathe. ...the whole little world I had built for myself crumbled down in that one moment. The last thing that tied me to DC, to my ex, to the adult life I had carefully and strategically built for myself ...was shot between the eyes at point-blank range. And I had pulled the trigger -- for the divorce part. Not the dog part. ...but the dog part screamed at me, "You want out?! I'll take you out!"
So the day of my divorce, I sat with my dying dog, in my former home, with my ex-husband, on the couch I bought during law school. The symbolism was lost on no one. It was comfortable, familiar, and very fucking weird all at the same time. I flew home to San Diego the next day, and once my girlfriend had deposited me at my house (after removing the vodka, razor blades and copy of Marley and Me) I sat on my floor and cried. Uncontrollably. The kind of crying where you're hot and your head hurts because it is such a physically draining process. And then I began bargaining with God. To bargain with the universe is a very humbling experience. It was the process of throwing away all of my power -- all of my fictional power -- with both hands and screaming, "Please!" Please save my dog. Because if she could just hang on and be OK...maybe so could I.
If you have never had a dog, I know you think I'm way over the top. But if you have had a dog, you understand that there is no other kind of unconditional love in the world. My dog was there when I learned my mother had stage 4 cancer. She was with me when I was sick....when I fucked up and felt ashamed. When I could not face another day, my dog would jump up next to me and give me a look that read, "I know." And she would stay. When no one else on the planet could possibly understand the pain, grief, lonelinesss -- fill in the blank here -- she did. And she physically stayed by my side. Despite the fact that I now live 3,000 miles away, I could not bear the idea of having that unconditional love disappear from this world.
Here is the good news: Kiera is going to be ok. Yes, bargaining with the universe worked. (I'm not sure what I owe...minor detail there....) Four days later a CT scan showed that the tumor was on her lung and not her heart. This meant that the tumor was operable. They cut it out...and it wasn't even cancer. It was benign. So she's going to (knock on wood) be fine. ...I wish I could say the same for me.
Here is the bad news: I'm still not ok. Yes, I'm thrilled that the doctors saved my baby's life, but I can't shake my funk. I'm not taking care of myself. I'm not exercising. I'm making bad decisions. My judgement is clouded. I'm indecisive. I've not been investing in me...the last six weeks has consisted of phoning it in. ...And I like the slightly neurotic part of my brain that keeps me on task. It keeps me energized and accomplishing -- and I have no idea where it has gone. But right now I am at a loss for direction or motivation.
It seems pretty ridiculous that I can't just look around and enjoy the moment. I have built a great life for myself -- I live in the perfect climate, in a home I own and love. I have a job I love. I have wonderful friends and a beach at my beckon call. But the new life that I have built is lonely. It's husband free. It's dog free. It's even roommate free. Don't get me wrong -- I do hate people and I am annoyed by their stupidity...and messes...and I so appreciate having the toliet seat down.... But what I've started to figure out, is that in this lifetime we have the choice of being lonely or annoyed.