Friday, July 19, 2013

Tonight I was at a local yacht club volunteering for a charity event.  The boating world is one that my ex-husband loved and desperately wanted to be a part of.  He bought a boat before he even bought a house, way before we even met.  He loved boating but he loved fitting in with that exclusive community of boaters even more. The image was important to him.  I think he thought if he could look the part, then maybe he would feel the part.  If he felt the part, maybe he wouldn't feel all the other not-so-good stuff that comes along with severe mental health problems, social deviance, lies and deception.  If he looked the part and felt the part, then maybe the bad parts would just go away.  But we all know how this ends.  The act lasts for a while, starts breaking down and the truth comes out.  The truth always has a way of coming out.

But, back to the yacht club.  There are some parts of that life that I miss:  the gentle waves lapping up against the side of the fiberglass; the calm of the lake at night; the sunsets.  But I do not miss the exclusivity of that world.  The people who think they are better than others because they have more money.  The ones who look at the size of your boat as the measure of your life.  Not all boaters are like this, but I certainly don't miss the ones who are.

So spending a night at a yacht club transports me back to another life.  Sometimes that other life feels like something I was cheated out of.  The husband and two kids.  The financial stability that was supposed to come with having a two-income family.  But as I reminisce and imagine the life that might have been mine, I quickly come back to the life that IS mine and I am reminded that I have a choice.  I can choose to be sad about what was lost or I can be grateful for what I have.

On my way home I heard an interview on NPR with Beverly Donofrio, author of Astonished: A Story of Evil, Blessings, Grace, and Solace.  The phrase that caught my attention was, "The trick is to live joyfully in an unfair world."  These words resonated with me.  They motivated me to blog for the first time in a long time.  What true words she spoke.  The world is not fair, but living joyfully is a choice that we can all make.  Not all the time, but we can certainly strive for it.