The 1,763-Day Weekend
Part 1 — Free to Tell the Tale
I went to the Second Cup in the Village one night about a week ago to cool off by sitting outside and re-reading a Marge Piercy novel I’d read more than 20 years ago. When I got back home, I found the letter from Le Maître in my mailbox. That means it’s now official, so sing it for me, Tammy!
Yup! Just call me the Gay Divorcé but not Mimi, as my story has zero resemblance to hers.
This recounting represents more than four years of held-back storytelling. In the first two years I didn’t tell the stories, in part due to denial on my part and in part because it would have amounted to a tacky exercise of “washing the [marriage’s] dirty laundy in public.” In the following years, I didn’t tell the stories because I didn’t want to publish anything that might come back to bite me in the ass during the proceedings. But now, I’m the Gay Divorcé and I can do (and write) whatever I want …at least on this topic.
Because I held back the stories for so long, I have much to write. That’s why I decided to break up this blog entry into several entries. However, because I have WordPress, the software I use to manage this blog, set to present the most recent entry first, I am publishing this series in reverse choronological order — last one first — so that the entries will appear in their logical sequence on the blog’s main or monthly search page.
Also, because I refer extensively to previous blog entries and other online sources in order to place every twist and turn in its rightful context, this series is better read online. Therefore, I am providing navigational aids at the top and bottom of each entry to help you see where you are and to allow you to move around among the entries — either backward, forward, or anywhere — as some of you may choose to read in more than one sitting. What’s more, all links within the text open a new browser window (or tab, depending on your browser settings) to prevent you from losing your spot.
What you’re about to read is, of course, completely one-sided: it’s MY side of the story. But let’s be clear: this has been my blog for nearly a decade so I call the shots around here. Besides, I’m writing this for me first and foremost because it has become too much for me to carry.
That said, I don’t think that this is a simplistic or maudlin account in which I pose as The Victim and depict NowEx as The Monster. I also don’t think that I’m stooping to trying and convicting the entire nation of Mexico based on my experience with one Mexican, except perhaps for occasional comedic effect. I mean, anyone who’s ever read me must come to expect me to inject some humour every now and then, because I certainly have to laugh about some of this stuff now that it’s finally over. But, at the same time, there’s no doubt that my bias does impose its limitations.
As much as I try, Mexico is now and probably in perpetuity low on my list of favourite places, thus making it a country I’m as keen to visit as Uganda or Burkina Faso. Moreover, as much as I try, I can’t find it in myself to draw a sympathetic picture of NowEx even though at one point I did fall in love (or thought I did) enough to marry him. Yet as I’m finally putting out this narrative for anyone to read, I’m prepared to accept that, to the reader, I, too, won’t necessarily come across as a sympathetic character, for I married him for the wrong reason.
Indeed, I was either unaware of or denying it when I did it, but when I married NowEx, I did so to rescue him from himself, despite himself. In marrying him, I repeated what I had done countless times before in my life, whether at work, at play, in friendships or in love: to try to rescue. Obviously that’s the worst possible reason to marry someone.
However, by now I’ve come to view this “urge to rescue” not unlike a disease, which I think I’m finally putting in check, borne of a sense of rejection whose roots I’ve only recently uncovered through therapy. The sad result in this instance was that a whole marriage ended up resting on the faulty premise that assumed that, once the rescue would be over, the flow of reciprocal love would be boundless: I love you so much, I just had to rescue you; I love you so much because you’ve come to my rescue even though I didn’t know I needed rescuing.
So while in this narrative NowEx may end up coming across as unsympathetic, I’m bound to come across as desperate and foolish for wanting so much to have someone love me love me love ME…