Starting Over

When you are busy sometimes things don’t have time to sink in.  Like the move from Canada to Texas.  Followed by the wedding three weeks later.  Followed by immigration bills (a hefty one).  Followed by one… then two surgeries that were not completely covered by health insurance.

And so the M.O. since May 5th for me has been GO! GO! GO!  I haven’t made much time to explore, or just go anywhere on my own.  And it dawned on me this week that I’ve been keeping myself so busy that I’ve really run myself down.   Cranking it out, late nights, joking about workaholic natures that aren’t really part of who I really am.

It was part of who I had to be, to make it happen.

I learned some bad habits in the process of making impossible things happen in the last year and a half.  Financially it was necessary.  But socially?  I gab my ass off to family and friends on Facebook because that’s really all I have now.  I can’t fly to Binghamton right now.   I can’t leave the country and go hang out at Diane & Tyler’s cabin, hug my Godmother who was just diagnosed with cancer.  I couldn’t attend two weddings I really never thought I’d miss (Diana and Philip).   A third wedding I never thought I would miss in a million years … my last baby cousin is Carolyn.

Those cousins are like brothers and sisters to me.   I’m a lot older than all of them and so I was raised getting them into trouble around my Nonno’s farm.  I babysat them a lot, like I did my sister Kimmy.

It dawned on me the other day that I feel … more than a little lost socially.  I’m not particularly a “girly girl”.  I’m one of those strategic, business chicks that likes to talk about 401k’s and how we can get into a lovely but modest home that we can payoff in less than ten years.

Short mortgages turn me on.  Cool like that.   And I don’t really drink anymore (it’s mucho bad for diabetics and I’d like to keep my kidneys and liver as long as possible).   I love to bowl (which is probably pretty boring to most women).  I love my dogs like kids (which is probably strange to most women who actually have their own children).

I am learning to be a Step-Mum at age 41.  I love it and our boys, but I have a hard time remembering (as my husband put it) that I am not the “Cool Aunt” anymore.  I’m supposed to act like a Mom.

Even if I don’t know what that is supposed to look like. Let’s take a moment and recall I didn’t have the best example, yanno?

I think calling someone “barf brains” is totally cool.  Perhaps not at the table… my bad.

I haven’t been around humans much in the face-to-face.  My life was pretty miserably solitary when I lived in Alliston.  Work… work… work…   And then my hiatus in Windsor really was horrible.  Six hours away from anyone who gave a shit about me locally.  There were a few.

I was alone a lot.   I gave Diego a headache daily.  Dante is not much of a conversationalist; he’s more like a jock that crushes beer cans with his forehead personality wise.

I feel sad because I am not sure I KNOW how to be around kind people anymore.  How to assume kindness before deceit, gossip or malice.  I lead with a steel clad glove now instead of a warm heart and hand.  And I know this is all behind me now, I am just embracing the fact that it changed me.  I’ve never been so guarded in my entire life.

Then again, I’ve never moved to a new country and culture before.  I must remember to have empathy about that.  I mean… how would you be feeling after six months away from your family, friends and Swiss Chalet sauce?  It’s the little things that take me down…

Like watching best friends shop together.  In fact I was so sure I was going to go ape shit drama queen that I avoided contacting Diane for the entire week.  I wasn’t too busy to harass her like I usually do… I was hiding.

When I saw the two best friends in the produce section laughing with their carts and talking about their day, I felt a knife in my heart.   I always wanted to be the woman who had a house no further than five minutes from everyone who mattered to her.

I have many people I love.  And I am loved by a few.  They just happen to be very very far away.

When I was in Canada I was missing Kevin.  Desperate to start our life together, like… in the same zip code like normal couples.  It hurt loving him every 90 days in person and daily on Skype.

And now that I am here, I want to have my Godmother’s lasagna.  I want my Zia Antonietta to make that rice and peas salad.   I can never get my breaded veal (not real veal.. inside round) as tender as theirs, although this week I tried again and pounded the shit out of it with my tenderizer… and scored a happy nod from Chef Kevin, who could cut it with his fork!  #Victory!

I had a big, loving family that did everything together.  That’s long gone.  I had small remnants of a family that fought to stay close, and now I’m in another country.

And there is no Diane here.  She’s been my best friend since 2001, and one of the very few women that have ever really… seen behind the “stuff” to the real me.

And I am not as good of a friend as I could be to her, but I joke that my purpose is to make her look good by comparison.  Fucked up, angry writer with ADHD, a closet full of Mommy and Daddy issues, a missing Sister and a heart that looks like it survived a few drive-by’s with more holes than Swiss Cheese.

I’ve been sad for weeks.  I’ve just been trying to hide it by being one of those busy bitches that other women dislike.  You know, the over achiever right?  More accurately the woman trying to hide what’s really going on inside her.

See Diane and Kevin would get that.  But most people see an arrogant bitch.  I’m good at wearing that mask.  It keeps people from asking questions.

Last night I dreamed I was sitting on a big rock out front of my Nonno’s house.  Surrounded by fog like a cheeseball movie. There was no one.  Not even Kevin or Diego or Dante, or the kids.  Just me sitting on a rock I helped move, about thirty years ago.

And I understand that in every possible way a human being can, I am starting over.   I am standing straight and trucking with a plan (I always have a plan or ten, actually).   And the outside bits, the cash flow, the cars, the getting ready for a new house… the stuff on paper is shaping up nicely.   But the insides need some serious work.

I dated a brilliant writer/radio celebrity in Toronto once who swore he’d never get married.  From his new home, wife and life in the East Coast he waved on G+ the other day and I recalled… he said I was not capable of being happy with anything situation or thing I have.  Because I always want something else, the moment I possess what I think I need.

Did he curse me or was he bang on?  Maybe some people are not capable of being happy authentically. They just go through the motions to fit in and pretend the holes don’t exist.

Because that’s what people want to see.  Shiny, happy, perfect people without dents.