Did It

I am fairly certain that I lived several lifetimes in the past twenty-four hours. I’m writing this from my living room floor, sitting on a sleeping bag and using an empty cable box as a desk. I just slayed a spider the size of a walnut, and am drinking tap water out of an empty CVS earplug container, because I forgot to bring cups and there is no way I am driving over to Target until I return that damn trailer, because backing up a trailer in a Target parking lot sounds like a bad idea for anyone, and especially someone who just drove seven hours with two furious cats and a comatose dog, and then “slept” (didn’t sleep) on a bed-in-a-box mattress on the floor.

Solid parking form.

On my last night in my house, the doorbell rang around 8PM. And then it rang again, and again; my friends, coming over to say goodbye. No matter how much older and theoretically wiser I get, there’s still this part of me I can’t get rid of that doesn’t believe anyone will really miss me that much, and doesn’t want to make a big fuss about the fact that I’m leaving (aside from on RG, of course; I’m obviously fussing a whoooole lot over here).

In any case, I hadn’t thought to ask anyone to come over on my last night. It didn’t even occur to me; I tend to figure people are busy with their own lives. They just came.

Of course they did.

So we sat around my dining room table and ate bite-sized Hershey’s bars, and talked about the last three years, and then they left so I could finish packing and get some sleep before my drive. After I shut the door behind them I turned and banged my knee – hard – on a box, and my eyes watered up from the pain, but of course it wasn’t about my knee at all, and of course I wasn’t just crying, I was weeping.

In the morning, I walked my kids to their school for the last time, and was all weird about it, touching the trees as I passed them, trying to notice every little thing. Then I got in the car, promised my father not to go over 50 miles an hour (and then promised him again, and again, and again), and just…left.

The drive was long, sure, but when I say it felt like several lifetimes, I mean it. First of all, I do not exaggerate when I say that my cats yowled for seven hours straight; I didn’t even know such a thing was possible, but there you go. More than that, though: there were several different people piloting that U-Haul down I-5. First I was the weeping ex-wife who couldn’t help herself, and called her husband to say she was sorry for this – for all of it, everything – and that she would miss him. After that I had a solid hour of Bangles-fueled I AM AMAZING AND I CAN DO THIS empowerment, which ended abruptly in crushing depression (thanks, Rod Stewart), necessitating a stop at McDonald’s. I spent the last leg of the trip in a state of low-grade panic, which the traffic on the 405 did nothing to help with. I pulled up to the house, got out, and the first thing that happened was that Lucy fell into the pool and had to be rescued in a joint effort by me and the guy from TaskRabbit I’d hired to help me unload my plants. I ate Moon Pies for dinner, and fed the cats using emptied-out instant rice containers.

I am so, so tired. And not a little bit scared. But I made it: I am here, in my house. My home. It is beautiful, and it is mine.

And I did it all by myself.

  • Celebrity Boyfriend Chasing

    Amazing that you can rent a house with only a pizza sponsorship as equity.

  • JenniferP

    Congratulations on your new home! If you ever have to transport your cats again, there is a product called Feliway that you spray on a towel or blanket that will help calm them. I got mine from our vet. It definitely works!

  • Jennifer Williams

    Whew. Just reading that made me tired. Moving like that is the kind of thing I did in my 20s, but I don’t even know if I could do it now. But that’s kinda sad, isn’t it? To already be so bone tired by my late 30s. I’m sure, today, you can relate to that feeling.

  • Lauren Larkin
  • Beasliee

    For a second I thought you were having a campfire in your new house and I was worried… But you’re not and you’ll do great in your new place. Best wishes x

  • Allison

    Next time you have to travel with your cats, you should give them L-Theanine (nature’s xanax). Put it in pill pockets or crush it and sprinkle it over their food. It’ll chill them out 🙂

  • Rachel

    Jordan. I did all of this too. When my 10 year marriage broke down I thought we might still be able to to make things work. We didn’t have children but we had a business together and all of our finances were tied together. And there was still love. Within a month I was in a legal battle that lasted a long time and not well for me. But I somehow moved to another city, where I had family and friends, built a new business of my own, and kept moving forward. It’s so hard. It’s been 6 years and I still have no idea how I did it or where the time went. You will do it too. You are an incredibly amazing woman. You have your kids and Lucy and 2 cats. Being a single woman and making it work on your own for them is something that you will do and do so well and when they are older they will admire you so much for it. Stay strong.

  • You did good. Now for calmer, easier days ahead (eventually).

  • Tara Starwalt

    I left Texas after a bad 8 year marriage, headed for Baltimore with 2 dogs, a futon mattress, and all my vinyl, only to realize that I had no idea how to do what I was about to do. That was 10 years ago, and while I have no idea how I did it, I look back on Mile One Newly Divorced Tara with such pride. You GOT this, Jordan. No doubt.

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