Friday, January 28, 2011

Virtue 12 - Day 1; and a shower curtain.

Our second-to-last virtue:

Chastity: Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another's peace or reputation.

Uh...I haven't "used venery" in well over a year.  If venery leads to dullness, I'm the sharpest girl you know. 

Moving on.

So, my mother called today and offered to buy my old sewing machine, which means I actually have some money to buy a little sofa of some sort, and maybe even a lamp, for my new living room.  I went to the local furniture store and found a rather cool-looking sort of futon thing for roughly half of what I had expected to spend.  I then found a super-cool lamp that is marked down by 66% because the shade (which is so custom, it's irreplaceable) is dirty.  Well, it may be irreplaceable, but for about 15 bucks, I can buy some awesome fabric and trim, recover it, and have a custom lamp for my sweet new bachelorette pad.  So, if I still want them on Monday, I'll pop back in and get them.

I made a little trip to Wally World today (yes, I know I was just there yesterday, you Nazi) and picked up some "Gee-I-Really-Need-These-Things-The-Day-I-Move-In" stuff.  I got a shower curtain, some plates, bathroom rugs, other little stuff like that.  None of it is particularly impressive and certainly not worth much money.  What can I say, it was a fun girlie thing to do.

I've got my goods, I'm driving home, and I remember what my friend Crissy said to me today...she told me, basically, "when you move we should have a candle party at your place as a housewarming."  And I started bawling.  Yes, it's dark, I'm driving and crying with my new shower curtain.   

You see, dearest reader, I've never really had what I am about to have.   When I was a kid, I always wanted to have the kind of house where people just "dropped by" when they were out and about - maybe bring some little snackies or maybe a movie, or just come around and we can hang out until the cows come home.  Then I grew up.  "Growing Up" meant living with an alcoholic.  When you are married to an alcoholic, you live in terror that someone actually will "drop by" unannounced and find out your family's dirty little secret.  So, from 1988 until 1999, I made damn sure that nobody, and I mean nobody, just dropped by.

Then I was a single parent with 4 children under the age of 10.  I was constantly scrounging, or so it felt, in pretty much every area of my life.  I was always on the verge of being completely broke.  I was scrapping around trying to establish some sort of career.  I was, well, a single woman in my early 30's.  I was in a chronic state of  humiliation by the end of my first marriage, and later, by the man I was dating and eventually married.  I felt that nothing I had was good enough for anyone, since it obviously wasn't good enough for the men in my life, so I needed to make sure that nobody saw any more than they needed to.  So much for dropping by.

Then I was married to husband no. 2 (and according to the laws of the State of Washington, I still am for a little while longer).  In case there's any doubt in your mind - my 2nd husband spent 10 years defiling, degrading, humiliating and neglecting me.  During that time, I was relieved that nobody would want to drive out into the middle of nowhere to see us, because our home environment was mortifying; and, of course, all my fault for not being a better Christian wife.

Well, that brings us to today.  I have no alcoholic around.  I've cut out all the emotionally abusive people that used to be in my life.  I'm about to move into a tiny, little house...and I CAN HAVE PEOPLE OVER.

Yes, my living room will feature what is, in reality, a pretty cheap sofa and my old recliner with the duct tape on it.  If you are around at mealtime, you will eat off a white Correlle plate and use a fork that is rather lightweight or worn, and probably doesn't match the fork that anybody else is using.  You'll probably have to hold said plate in your lap, because there's no room for a dining room table.  But you are welcome to come over.  I have nothing to hide, because I bet that if you are in my life now, you won't think my home isn't good enough for visitors.  And just the thought of being able to offer this to you for the first time in my adult life, dearest reader, brought me to tears tonight.

When you come by, make sure you check out the shower curtain.  It's super-cute.



  1. I am so glad you are finally free to be happy and have your own special place where you can live in peace. What a wonderful post!

  2. I am so sorry that #1 was such a pain and I never knew the extent. I wish I could have been there for you more.

    I wish we lived closer so that I could give you a hug.

    And -- instead of "Hammer Time", it's now "Tina Time"!!



  3. Dearest Hester, Could it be that you are not giving the readers an accurate historical account?

  4. Radiojock - Ha! Good point. Let my clarify, for all my readership: there is absolutely, positively NOT SUCH THING as an "accurate historical account" on any topic on the planet. If you believe that there is, well, you watch too much TV. And I know my readership is far too intelligent to read my prose as any such thing.

    As I am a fairminded individual, I should let you all know that, several years after our divorce, my first husband stopped drinking and has made some concerted efforts to straighten himself out. He certainly deserves credit for that. So if you see him in the street, you don't need to verbally accost him for my sake.

    If you are possibly fishing for details on my second marriage...sorry. For me to verbally acknowledge the problems like this to my family and friends is huge for me. Frankly, even if I were farther along in my recovery where I could talk about it, I wouldn't, because that is my past and my past no longer controls me, nor do the abusers in it.

    I like the "Hester" analogy; I, too, was judged by people with planks in their eyes. Fortunately for me, I live in a time and place where I can free all those people from my sphere and raise my son in a peaceful environment from here on out, whereas Hester had to endure their hypocrisy and cruelty so she and her child would not starve.

    Thank God that He is more merciful than His "church" here on earth.


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