Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Life, Phase Two

 (No, I'm not pregnant, thanks for asking.)

It's been a month since I loaded up the kids and the cats and began this second phase of my life.

So far so good.

We unpacked the last box in the new house two days ago.  It probably would have been two weeks ago, but we hit a road block when it came to decorating.  Not because we disagree on style--we can sit down with a Pottery Barn catalog and fully decorate our dream house in less than ten minutes with nary a disagreement.  But our chotchkies and framed prints? They came with emotional baggage that neither of us expected.  For an entire day it was nothing but wooden chickens and tears. So there it all sat, all of the mementos of our former lives, piled in the dining room until we figured it out.

Luckily, we're really good at figuring it out.

(We decided to go with this theme throughout the entire house.)

And because finalizing our divorces, moving into a new place, blending our families, and starting a new life together wasn't quite enough stress, we decided to take a 10 hour road trip to Maine last weekend.  Marianne was able to meet a lot of my family and one of my old high school friends. As far as I could tell, they liked her.

The best part for me was seeing my family at ease around her.  For 16 years I've felt like my family was always on their best behavior around  The Former Husband (who will be referred to as TFH from here on out).  In all fairness, he never asked them to be.  But I know my family.  I know the language they use and the stories they tell, and that rarely came out around him.

But last weekend visiting them with Marianne was completely different.  I knew it was different when my mother told a story in front of her that I can't even repeat here (let's just say it involved zucchini).  I knew it was different when she bought beer to share at my aunt's house. I knew it was different when religion was discussed with my old friend and no one was offended and I didn't want to vomit from anxiety. Not only can I be me with her, but so can everyone else.  I haven't enjoyed a visit with my family this much in a long time.

(Also? I knew it was different when she, a New England girl herself, pronounced Worcester correctly.) (Woostah, in case you're curious.)

Anyway, the point is that things are going well.  And I'm happy.  I'm happy in a way I didn't know was possible. 

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