06 March 2006

I passed a typical 21st century Sunday-laundry, vacuuming, and e-filing my income taxes.

Of course I first went to the Lectionary Online to read the daily office. I would have read it from my hard copies of the BCP and Bible, but I leave those in the car for something to read over my 30 minute lunch break.

I read the e-papers; I surfed several home improvement sites; I downloaded a few things from a medical websites-I will clear these blasted sinus!

I used TurboTax Online-highly recommend the service if you are looking for a good place to e-file your taxes. I was a bit uncomfortable abut the whole thing until I got started, but I'd seen TurboTax before and the price was hard to beat-free.

I couldn't figure out how I was going to get those W-2's in there, was I to scan them and then email the images, what? But I was instructed to type in my former employer's ID number, and the amounts typed in the boxes-I hit submit and my money should be here in about ten days.

I feel strange, ambivalent about my seeming assimilation into this strange new world. Not sure I like how I was able to do it.

I felt strange too, when I read my email to the columnist ("Why Do You Blog?") printed in the e-paper. Mercifully he omitted my name. I wrote to him, yes, and I understood that he might print some or all of my emailed response. Guess I just didn't think he would.

The week's end has been a wonderment to me. I think I finally have come to an understanding of how deeply wounded I have been by the events of the past several years. How traumatized. I see now that I truly didn't comprehend the depth of hurt I have been carrying.

I understand now why I have had so much trouble feeling as though I might be getting myself together; I understand better, now, I think, how far actually I have come considering everything that has happened, and that my lack of understanding, my impatience with the snail's pace toward feeling myself again, was in effect, slowing me down.

I get it now-I don't have to chastise myself for not accomplishing that long list of things I wanted to do over the weekend-nor do I have to or even need to make excuses for what I didn't do.

I had priorities, and those were met.

But I need to be kinder to myself, too, and not obsess over other people's expectations, or even my own. Because my expectations of the time it takes to get past something like this aren't appropriate.

When my divorce was final I though life would immediately be right again.

But it wasn't. Each day became another, and the discoveries of the depth of my ex's calculated evil were diabolically spaced so as to inflict the maximum pain. Hopefully what I found out in October 2004 is the last of the sickening discoveries.

Meanwhile, it seemed I met every scoundrel living within 250 miles of Dothan. When the furniture (which I stupidly thought paid for but wasn't-Crusty put it on credit without telling me, and shifted the money to his personal account instead) payments went unmade, the manager of the store made me a most indecent proposal as to how I could keep the furniture without having to pay cash money for it.

I told him to come get the furniture, and Fox and I sat on the beach chairs Crusty somehow missed.

I could go on, all the way through the three years and ten months I worked for certifiable monsters who openly gloated that I was trapped and should just get over my self-esteem.

I had to quit my job to get a day off. They hounded me during the last three weeks I was there, and tried to prevent me from packing-I think they were flabbergasted when a couple of frineds showed up and started throwing my things into the rental truck the last day I worked-and they tried to slow the move by constantly interrupting us while at the same time loudly reminding me I had until noon the next day to clear out. All the while, as they had done for the past three years and ten months, they stood and catalogued my things-they especially coveted my desk and art work.

Of course, these are the people who called their 5th cousin their "pet ni__er" to his face, and told people he was a "no-good, rednecked, useless white ni__er who needed a hand-out." He is a brute who bragged about beating a classmate so badly he was in hospitalized for three months and who told me I should throw my son out so that he could move in, and when I laughed, said he would "...fix..." me, and then began to tell people I must be a lesbian until someone pointed out that they could understand why I would prefer to be a lesbian rather than be with him...then he escalated and began to stalk me. I told my employers, they said I must be lying-"Who would be interested in a nobody little white trash piece like you?"

They were right-I was trapped. I had no-where to go, no-one to turn to since Crusty had made sure I had no friends and I damn sure couldn't trust anyone I had met since gaining my freedom from Crusty. I was helpless.

They knew it, and took advantage of it, and taunted me with it continuously.

When I pulled in Atlanta, I had less than $50.00 in my pocket because my former employers had cheated me for the entire three years and ten months I'd worked for them.

I was a mess. I had less than $50.00 in my pocket. But three weeks later I had a job that pays twice what I was making in Dothan. I had a job with a lunch break, and two additional beaks; health benefits, and dignity.

I got my BCBS card last week. I clutched it my hand, and waved it the other drivers as I drove to work.


This weekend I really reached an understanding of just how deeply they hurt me, those fine folks of Dothan, Alabama.

And somehow, the understanding has been something of a healing.

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