Broken Suitcase

16 Jan

 

Edvard_Munch_-_Madonna_(1894-1895)

 

“It frequently happens that women who do not really love their husbands are jealous and destroy their friendships. They want their husbands to belong entirely to them because they themselves do not belong to him. The kernel of all jealousy is lack of love.”

 

Memories, Dreams, Reflections

C.G. Jung

 

 

Near the end of my Thanksgiving trip back east, I was feeling light-hearted, thinking of returning to California. This felt weird…creepy – but it was undeniable. Things were bad with Ann and nothing would be solved going round and round in a whirlpool effect. As I got closer to leaving, Ann told me that Devon would be crushed if I didn’t get home to Jersey for Christmas.

Being broke, I had to be creative flying coast to coast. For Thanksgiving I flew from LA to Puerto Rico to attend a press event and then had them fly me to Jersey. Getting back to California, I flew to Jamaica for a travel agent award event and was then flown to LA. If I were to make it home for Christmas I’d have to finesse a similar hitchhiking scheme.

Because of my childhood, I’ve struggled with Christmas all my life. With the birth of Devon, I’ve learned to enjoy aspects of Christmas. I don’t feel good during this holiday. I feel physically ill in the hours leading up to decorating the Christmas tree, and I have to drag myself out of bed on Christmas morning.

Back in LA, I managed to arrange a flight – although it sucked. I flew en route to Martinique in mid-December – with a midnight to dawn stopover in JFK – sitting up all night in a coffee shop with a truly soul-sickened group of people. Then I flew on to Martinique in the morning for a week or so and then back to JFK. Ann was too frightened to pick me up at JFK so I made my way to Jersey on my own.

I got home at three in the morning. Instead of breakfast with me, Ann went out for breakfast with a friend.

This kind of set the tone for the next eight days. Suppressed anger, hurt silences and Christmas jim-jams. Money was super-tight. The house was a mess. Ann had started a new job so I spent the days trying to straighten up the place so I didn’t feel like a white trash loser from Cops – the kind of wild-eyed drunk they push aside to get in the front door, to then shine a light on his completely squalid surroundings.

For eight nights Ann and I lay side by side in bed, without any sex at all – not even touching.

I realized how bad it was when I innocently walked in on Ann when she was naked, dressing for work. She let out a frightened scream and I backed out of the bedroom. Neither one of us said a word – not even blasting out a stupid joke. Only silence as I stood in the hall and then walked downstairs.

To get back to California I had to fly to Tobago for a week – time I couldn’t really spare – and then fly back to LA. Even though it was a morning flight, Ann was too nervous to drop me off at LaGuardia in Queens. Instead she got me as far as Manhattan and then I had to catch a taxi and pay $30 bucks to get to the airport.

(2006)

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