I’ve Done All the Dumb Things

Published December 22, 2011 by insufficient mums

Tonight I’m writing because I’m embarassed. I’m embarassed about letting myself become emotionally vulnerable after so many years of learning not to. The Goddess in her wisdom has been generous enough to give me a lifetime of lessons on not trusting human beings – men in particular. But – whoops…

I had been single for over a year, with three beautiful children, a very full life, aspirations and impediments. I was happy with me, and becoming accustomed to simply showing up and doing my best, regardless of how insufficient I felt. I fully realised that I have had a lifetime of learning to feel inadequate. Plus, I’m a human being, so inadequate is my default position.

But, I do like those boys. I guess its hormonal. After all, I wasn’t going to ‘trust’ one. I have had some very good male friends. Men make good friends. Actually, I had just finished a minor fling with a male friend who had made it clear that friendship was all that could be expected. I was very comfortable with that.

Then I met that guy. You know, ‘that’ guy? Sexy, thoughtful, kind, intelligent, a good parent. And with a bit of a dodgy past. I’ve always liked that, because it makes me look so tame by comparison.

Right here, right now, I’m trying to work out what went wrong. How did I become vulnerable? Believe me, I’m fine with flings. I’m fine with sexuality. I love the buzz of ‘something new’. I’d be quite happy to live in the Dopamine hit forever.

Somewhere along the line (a short line – only three or four months), I surrendered myself to trusting this person. I believed what he said, probably because he thought he believed it too. The relationship was volatile. Highs and lows I would not have expected at 42. Part of me knew it was juvenile, but the power of the experience, the feeling that I had met a kindred spirit, was indeed seductive.

Somewhere along the line I became a dickhead. A 42 year old mother of three with two ex-husbands, I allowed myself to be a dick. And the evidence was already there. In the highs and the lows. We both knew it wasn’t meant to be such a rocky ride.

But I kept showing up for another round. I took shit I shouldn’t have taken. I took risks with my own happiness that were just a bit dumb, really. Rocky or not, I loved it.

So, what have I learned?

I want to say I’ve learned not to surrender myself ever again. The problem with this is that I already knew that before I began. I’m no slouch. I’ve experienced life. Neither cynical nor fluffy, I am a true realist.

Realistically, I’ve learned that I am a human being, and I do dumb shit. Women of the world, I want to tell you to remain strong, and not turn to mush for the wrong reasons. I can’t tell you that.

Because all I can do is show up, stay alive, do the best I can for my kids, and enjoy the good bits.

I hate cliches. I hate being one. But I’ll suck it up and confess to you.

Shh, don’t tell 🙂


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