August 2, 2012

straight-sided tubs and diamond rings

I don't recommend being single near 40.

Today things really caught up with me.  I was moaning, bawling, and howling in my new place after the straw broke the camel's back.  The straw?  It was the straight-sided tub in my new place.  When I called my mom crying (a mistake), she at first laughed at me for being so upset about this.

I only take baths, and it is a very comforting thing -- when I can lean back, put my feet in the air to wash them or shave my legs, brush my teeth, relax, and bond with baby.  Studies show that lonely people are more likely to take baths.  I think of it as an adaptation like the "hugging machine" that lady with Asperger's built herself.

So, it only took 2 baths at my new place before I realized I had a pretty basic quality-of-life problem on my hands.  I was up until 2am last night researching this non-reclining tub problem, and it seems there are no good solutions.  The whole bathroom at my new place is cramped and seeming more and more like a torture device.  Who would even produce a straight-sided bathtub?  It's cruel.

So, I stopped by Target on the way home and bought this silly "bath pillow" thing that I thought I might fold into a wedge for my tub.  When home, I got in my empty tub and tried leaning on this wholly inadequate tri-fold foam thing.  It is hard enough sitting up with my 5-month belly when the tub is full, but after some difficult maneuvers I could find no utility from my recent purchase, and finally the injustice of the situation overcame me and the floodgates opened.  It seemed that the vague "they" were trying to take away my one consistent comfort in this world!

While I agree that it would be laughable if this were sole basis of my self-pity, but besides the host of other annoyances in my 100-year-old half-double which was supposed to be my dream upgrade over my old place, there are more basic struggles bearing down on me.

I knew I had noticed all the diamond wedding rings on the women in my prenatal yoga, but I didn't realize how much it had affected me until I had a dream about it.  In the dream, I had tried on another woman's ring and somehow had forgotten to give it back!  The feeling I got from the ring was STRONG -- security, support, being chosen, belonging... did I mention SECURITY?!!

I realize that my perspective is all out of whack right now -- I am assuming these married women have ideal partners, and I am focusing on the negatives of my new place rather than the positive (more space for baby, nice ceiling fans, central air, dishwasher, and my new W/D!)

The worst part is the obvious response when a choice mom goes to a dark place of I'm-all-alone woe-is-me -- "well, you chose this, so what are you complaining for?"  And that's exactly the first thing my mom said when I mentioned the diamond rings!  Of course, I never want her to reason with my pain or even try to fix my problems (she can't).  I want compassion and hope.  I did get to spew my anger at the blame -- that people with grandkids should never be allowed to tell me I have no right to want a family just because no man has married me.

It doesn't help -- and is very scary in fact -- that my disaster of an affair last summer has re-emerged on the fringes saying seductive things despite the epic broken heart I've taken a year to slowly heal.  I loved this man, but he would drain precious resources (financial, emotional) I NEED for my baby!  As I told him, I cannot carry a baby and a broken heart at the same time.  I just worry at my vulnerability through this single motherhood & move lately.  The timing is not great.

One bright spot I've had after many weeks of suffering over not having what other pregnant women seem to have was a moment of peace I had in my new bedroom staring at the ceiling fan -- I thought "my life isn't like other people's lives."  And IT WAS OKAY :)


  1. I totally understand about the diamond rings. I had one on my finger for two years. It was gorgeous. It made me look like a perfect, happy, complete woman. More importantly, it made me FEEL so loved and secure. I was proud of it all the time. When things fell apart, I took it off, and gave it back (in return for the one I had given). In some ways, it was the worst part, the symbolism of it. I still miss it on my finger, and the way it made me feel.

  2. Your story is heartwarming. Maybe it isn’t the right time for you to wear a diamond ring just yet. But you can still hope for the better, right? For some people, a diamond ring may represent a special kind of relationship, and for others, it may just be a part of their ensemble. Someday, I think someone will put a ring around your finger.

    @Kimmy Barnes