One of the hardest things about exiting a marriage is the loss of your person. In a marriage, you have a built in person. This person is your go-to. In crisis, for events, for staying in and watching Netflix. You don’t have to think about it because you know they’ll be there.
Because work and emotional distance, Spouse hasn’t really been my person in a while. But he was good at showing up when it mattered. I have a recurring ailment that has me laid up in bed for a few days every now and again, unable to walk or care for my dog or work. For years, Spouse managed me care. The dosing of pain pills, who would take the dog out and keep an eye on me while he worked, etc.
So when I had an episode this week, I was truly scared. My roommate is out of town and Spouse was working, unable to get away and also no longer required to try.. So I was in charge of my own care. These episodes are unexpected and they put me in so much pain, I can’t usually think straight.
But the most wonderful thing happened: my community came through for me! Spouse coached Feathers over the phone on how to give me a shot I needed and Feathers stayed with me for 24 hrs, caring for S and I fully. Tall Guy came by to take S out and help after that. My closest girlfriend in the city, H, came by to keep me company and a few men who I just have casual sex with came by as well.
Feathers and I have been spending a lot of time together lately and it’s been really magical. He is truly a special person and I feel really lucky to be a part of his life. He’s tender and brilliant and creative. I never know what time with him will entail, but I’m always glad to see him. He was a really attentive caregiver as well. One of the best things a person can do for me when I’m in pain is distract me and Feathers is full of stories and ideas, so he was the ideal caretaker. I couldn’t sleep the first night and he stayed up all night with me showing me youtube videos he made or telling me stories, real and fictional.
When Tall Guy came over, he walked in, saw me laying pathetically on the couch and said “oh sweetie” with so much empathy I almost started crying. He came over and gently hugged me and kissed my head. It was honestly such a sweet moment, I wish I had been more lucid for it.
As painful as those days were and as stressful as it is to be so helpless, I couldn’t help but marvel at the idea that even though I don’t have one built in person, I do have people who love me and care about me. And in some ways, sharing the burden among a few people is actually really nice.
I love to believe I am completely self sufficient now. Miss independent woman who can do it all. And I think that’s mostly true. But, there are times of crisis and not everything is meant to be done alone. Such a relief to find out I do have support. I do have people. I just don’t have a person. And that’s OK.