Feb 1, 2013
When you're getting a divorce after being married a very long time, all your memories, even the really good ones feel like walking through a cactus patch. Though some have flowers and look beautiful, you don't examine them up close and breath in the sweet smell like you would with lilacs. Some of them may even be nourishing, but most days it's safer to keep a distance lest you end up sitting on the floor trying to extract nettles from your skin and move on with the day. It causes me to very carefully walk my path in life, never veering too deep into the thicket, never watching certain movies, or reading certain books, tossing out a whole decade of music and avoiding whole regions of my brain, only peering in slightly when the children ask. It's a delicate and absurd dance living in a cactus patch. It's why I returned to the lush grass lands of Illinois where the oaks have deep roots and the rich black dirt will nourish just about any seed you can plant. I think eventually I'll have enough new growth to roll among the violets and keep my cacti in bell jars next to the pressed funeral flowers and childhood rock collection.