Juicy Strawberries

Six years ago I watched my younger sister Megan dance with our grandfather at her wedding reception. I reached back to grab by glass of Cab, but it was drained. I looked over at my husband Kevin who had been sober five years, at my request.

“Skyler drank it,” he feebly tried to blame our 9-year-old son, but then, reluctantly he admitted the truth.

My face went from curiosity to fear to incredulity to dread. As my sister’s married life was beginning, mine was unraveling.

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Yet, practicality and guilt kept me grounded in place. Almost every penny I needed to survive came from my husband. We were upside down with the house and a mountain of credit card debt.

I lost my grandfather, biological father and saw our daughter off to college over the next ten months. Then a desire to live juicy, loud and true welled up inside me, obliterating all excuses and I moved out and divorced.

I recall pacing the backyard of my cottage apartment wishing I could afford flowers while begging the banks to grant us a loan modification to keep the house. Kevin wiped out the 401K to pay half the credit card debt and got the interest rate decreased.

I tried to hold onto my faith, repeating mantras of strength and freedom while weeding the side lot, trying to make a garden from nothing. But it’s hard to feel the security and love of the Universe when your cupboards are bare and you have too much damn pride to tell a soul how really scared you are.

I nearly cried whenever the boys needed new shoes and with forced cheerfulness suggested duct tape. Our shopping went from surf shops to Kohl’s to the 5 t-shirts for $10 warehouse. We built a room in the garage to separate the boys when the tension reached an all-time high. They got a tongue lashing for leaving on a light or not bringing home the Tupperware from lunch. I had to save up to buy a potato peeler. And yet, I somehow kept them at Waldorf and in soccer.

We trudged on. Never looking up. The journey was too long – no point in looking for the finish line. Very few tears fell. There wasn’t enough time.

Instead of wallowing or lamenting, I allowed wanderlust to carry me through.  I don’t have a clue how I did it now. The road and the blessed yellow line was my soothing balm. It calmed me and yet kept me striving, pushing for more – more from life – more happiness – more juicy adventures – more security – more abundance.

Until I reached this very day. Today, I made the final payment on the credit card. The mantra rings true.

IAM DEBT FREE AND FINANCIALLY INDEPENDENT!!!!

***

One of my first memories is of the different sounds my breath made when I exhaled inches from a large square fan. I wore pigtails then and thought my thumb tasted like juicy strawberries.

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Mary Wood. on September 27, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    Sort of been there and done that, but the room in the garage was not o good idea for me. Luckily I managed to get my house. I diligently made the payments, managed to get a good job, and finally made it to “debt free.” What a wonderful feeling.

    Reply

  2. Posted by Ann on October 1, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    beautiful writing, jamie! It was the wonderlust that carried. You were connected to source and that takes you flying high!!! Congrats on your wonderful new financial status – it was always yours. You created the way to line up with it. Hope to see you sometime soon.

    Reply

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