Tuesday, July 11, 2023

The Mermaid and the Gardener ~(From Tarnished Scales to Loving Fairytale) Chapter II

[ DISCLAIMER—If I seem to be speaking out of turn, I am. I am a woman no longer holding her breath, waiting for something to end. I am ready for something new to begin, and so I write. As suggested by the lovely Emily Dickenson, she said, “Tell the truth but tell it slant.” As a writer, I’ve restructured particulars to suit better my purposes which is to amuse and teach. I feel inclined to protect (some folks) but mostly myself, and therefore the truths I write are indeed facts; however, they are my impressionistic perspective. Feel free to take this as pure amusement, and perhaps, in addition, one might derive some benefit. No heavy lifting here; let us all remain in one’s good graces, smile and carry on. Life is a game, and so I play it.] 

“Truth, in her dress, finds facts too tight. In fiction, she moves with ease.”—Rabindranath Tagore  

“You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better.”—Anne Lamott

“Preserve your memories, keep them well; what you forget, you can never retell.”—Louisa May Alcott

{If you're bright, shiny and new here, I have begun writing my love story. If you'd like to swim along, begin reading the first chapter here.}

One year earlier, I was living in California. M was staying sat on the couch whilst I was busily loading firewood into the fireplace. M advised me that we needed to have a proper family conversation for the days prior they sacked him (of which years later, I uncovered his sacking was due to various nefarious measures and not a simple parting of ways), and we were going to have to come up with a plan to accumulate some money quickly for we would need to move again for the 19th (seriously, no exaggeration) time. We had not been in California for scarcely a year, and I had been growing depleted and thinking of taking a passport (let us leave it there because this post is on the webby, and I would rather it remain entertaining rather than dreadfully depressing.) If it’s escaped your notice, I am trying to paint you an image of how utterly sad and broken I was and had been for many o’ years. I had spent my entire life devoted to my children. It was the children and me, and we vastly existed as the five-fountain of variety as M was rarely ever home, and when he was, he was distracted in his chamber, on social media or rather engaged in his many nefarious, occupying extracurriculars (read between the lines there, if you please).

My blooms had long gone off the rose. 

Several months prior, I had broken into
such an illness that I felt as though I wanted to perish. Allow me to do my level best to tell you all the ailments I had simultaneously, and upon my fortnight of illness, I had relegated myself to the downstairs settee to avoid my husband. I had developed strep throat, a UTI, two kidney stones, the flu, an injured knee and a toothache from the fiery pits of hell. I spent one night crying into my pillow (and before you inquire why I didn’t seek a physician’s assistance, we did not have health insurance, and I was in no hurry to rack up doctor bills; I’m a provident lass) from the toothache and the kidney stones as I struggled to pass them. I was in so much pain, and the only time M came downstairs was to chide me by saying, “Can you keep it down? I’ve got to get up for work in two hours.”

There’s a point when malice ceases to be amusing. 

This stint of illness lasted for about a fortnight; in that fortnight, I lost nearly ten pounds. I was severely dehydrated and could not stand, and I am sorry to say that I did not begin feeling generously better from being nursed back to health by none other than myself. I remember pondering to myself that if God (for at that time, I was still an active Mormon, and so I prayed that I became well again) would assist in my healing, I was changing my life from that juncture. The first thing was to remove myself from my god-forsaken union devoid of love, and the second was to leave religion altogether. They had never served me well. I was entirely unhappy and remained so for decades. I couldn’t for the life of me understand why I was altogether miserable beyond blue comprehension in two profound religions. If anyone should be happy, it most assuredly should’ve been me. I did everything “required” of me, and I still wasn’t pleased. Heaven forefends I constantly had a go of disagreeable measures with the many male authority figures. I question everything in life, and when you question male authority, it’s not taken on the chin. I am not devoid of commonsense. Do you comprehend, my darling? The repercussions “for disobedience” were upon my head; however, I never gave up or surrendered.

I did, however, stop playing with impoverished florals. Something never quite added up, and I constantly felt like an outsider in my own home and church. All the while, I was fulfilling the commandments and still thought I was on the road to ruin, whilst most Mormons I knew were living the lives of hypocritical heathens and seemed much happier than me. It made no sense; I could not quite grasp the conclusions. I was at my wit’s end, and something had to change. I no longer liked the sound of religion. That change was to be me. My illness made me realise no one was going to save me, and I was so ill that the person who was supposed to care for me was devoid of sympathy when it pertained to me (as it always had); he couldn’t be bothered. In a bitter irony, two weeks later, once I was all well and regained my glow (thanks to my self-care and tending with essential oils), M got a kidney stone. He was so feeble he lasted less than two hours before he drove himself to the emergency room and charged over four thousand dollars in medical bills. I can’t help but feel he brought it down upon his own head.

I felt I was becoming grieved, faced with the looks of perpetual mourning and no longer fresh-faced and innocent. 

As one might gather, I was demonstrating signs of being fed up by thee olde sod as he consistently set my teeth on edge. 

“There’s no better way to dismantle a personality than to isolate it.” —Princess Diana


  1. Is that all? I want the next chapter already! You need to write a book and have it published! It’s about time someone writes something worth reading about someone that will write the truth and not some made up version posted on Facebook. Debo

    1. Awww... Thank you so much. I am so happy you enjoyed it.

  2. Wow, you are such a strong woman for having endured all of that and come out on the other side. Really, that is so commendable.

    1. Awww... Thank you so much! I am so appreciative of you and thank you for reading.


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