Sep ar ation

The Alaska Blogs #7

Better living through chemistry?

Well, maybe not better. How about tolerable?

My chemicals of choice have felt more like a necessity since the New Crisis began, but no more so than during this trip. Almost daily doses of lorazepam, though only half-a-hit, followed by an assortment of fermented and distilled beverages in the night. The combo seems to take away some of the gnawing in my gut, dull most of the too-speeding thoughts and mangled emotions that the IMD has engendered, and which have only been magnified by the surreality of our little Alaska cruise.

The lonely guy...

“But Michael,” you say, and I hear the incredulity creeping into your voice, “what could be surreal on this trip of a lifetime? And what about the pinpoints of starlight you wrote about a scant 24 hours ago, pricking holes in the darkness?”

Yes, what about all that?

Well, the surreal comes as I step out of my body – metaphorically, of course – and observe the interaction of  a couple traveling together while divorce looms over every action and word. The moments of civility, humor, perhaps even the sharing of a somewhat intimate moment (small-scale intimacy only, but still the touch or tender word of two people long entwined) are flanked by the inevitable eruptions of the IMD: talk of the need for emotional separation and the steps we will slowly take for physical separation, which await on our return to CT.  And then there’s the surreality of interacting as a couple with strangers, our fellow passengers; it has been thankfully infrequent.

“Where do you live in Connecticut?“
(You mean now, for these remaining few weeks?)
“How long have you been married?“
(Ten years as of May 6, the day I was told I would soon be divorced. Nice symmetry, hmm?)
“Any children?“
(Blessedly, no – no other souls to torment with the IMD.)

The end of the cruise will bring fewer surreal moments. No more encounters with folks who just assume we are a happy loving couple wending our way together through life. Just a return to the daily routine. I know the end of vacations means that for most people – back to work, back to chores, back to responsibility. But for me – us – the end will mean looking for new homes, selling the current one, separating. Even more.

This morning, the weight of all that hit hard. Barely awake, my body heaved with sadness, a dry cry that seemed to wake the person next to me. This week, this situation, has not been easy for her either, she tells me. I believe it. And she is sorry for it. I believe that too.

But that doesn’t really matter, when the ego is engorged with self-pity, you know?

I know that this state will end, as the separation continues.

Until then, I will keep looking for those stars in the darkness.


~ by mburgan on May 31, 2010.

2 Responses to “Sep ar ation”

  1. I’m so sorry to read this, to think of what you are going thru- I really had no idea, and can’t imagine how tough this made your anniversary cruise. hang in there!

  2. Thanks Mo. Yeah, it was a challenge, but still a good trip. Now, more challenges to come…

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