OK, so here’s my big idea for tonight. My “aha’. My latest, greatest, earth-shattering revelation. Ready?
What? You already knew that? Whatever.
Before I continue, if your name is Larry or Cindy or if my being sad for a night will in any way bother you or keep you from sleep then stop reading. Now.
Because I am sad.
Not depressed. Sad. And for the point of trials and hearings and judges and lawyers, I make the distinction.
And there is a difference.
And I’m not sad all the time. I’m sad tonight.
And I’m sad because it’s Friday and my kids are gone and it’s the weekend and my kids will still be gone and it’s been one year—-this week— since the separation, one year since I heard the voice of the Lord as I was driving down Military Avenue, saying, “When are you going to do the hard thing I’ve called you to do?” and one year since I was supposed to go to a big fundraiser with my husband and one year since my mom drove up and I did the hard thing and I said the hard thing and I didn’t go to the fundraiser and I didn’t get to wear my pretty dress and tonight as my friends head to that same fundraiser, yes one year later, I am sad.
So I go to the video store. Do you know who goes to the video store on Friday night?
And I start down the kids aisle and then I remember I could actually pick out something PG-ish and then I look around and I start to cry. Tears pouring and rolling and smearing and it’s not a pretty cry.
I don’t cry pretty.
And there’s nothing that looks good, but I refuse to rent Scooby Doo or Princess Barbie Charm School so I keep looking and then I see it. Magic Mike.
I kinda have a thing for Matthew McConaughey and I have a friend on facebook who talks about this movie all the time, so I’m thinking why not?
I walk past the couples and the the kids and the families and make my way to the counter. The lady working squeals in delight!!! Great choice! Must be girls’ night!
Girls. As in plural.
And I start to cry again. And then I kinda started to laugh because while the guy tending the bar might be used to crying customers, my guess is that the Family Video girl is not. And just to be clear, that example was for illustration purposes only. I’ve never cried to a bartender—or ordered a drink from a bartender, for that matter. Although, I did use my sister’s driver’s license to get into a bar once in college.
That was in Arkansas and wouldn’t you know it that the bouncer had gone to school in Louisiana with my sister and he kept looking at me and looking at the picture and looking at me and finally he says, “Did you go to Centenary because I knew a Kimberly Hale that went to Centenary?” and I was like, “Are you freaking kidding me?”
Someone give me the odds.
Anyway, it is girl night. Singular. Single. I am single. My friends are married. They have families. They have children who are actually at home. They have fundraisers and dinners and jobs and yes, they are married.
Fridays are for families. Fridays are date night. Fridays are putting on lipstick and holding hands and, and—
And that’s when it dawns on me.
(OK, y’all can laugh now. Go ahead and laugh that it took me a year to figure that out).
I never really thought about before. Divorce for me has been about my children. Protecting, praying, loving, caring, sheltering from the storm, putting first. Always. And that’s still all the matters. My children are all that matter and they are healthy and they are loved and they will be back and I will find a way to navigate this new normal but in the meantime.
I’m single. And having a girl night. A teary 3-diet coke, lost count on the chocolate chip cookie GIRL night.
And I’m turning on Magic Mike……..and I’m turning off Magic Mike. Worst.Movie.Ever.
8:00: Girl night officially over. Praying for sleep.