Update: it’s Wednesday morning and I am in the ER with a possible fucked-up, also known as “lacerated” or “ruptured” spleen. So how does this change the story below? And will that depend on how things turn out for me today?
This Monday morning finds me back from my undisclosed location both better and worse for wear.
I ran away from home and its distractions last week to finish Divorce by Design: How to Split Without Losing Your Mind, Your Money or Your Kids.
Driven by the realization that if I didn’t get this book done I would lose myself and the last shred of dignity I have (it’s tiny, but it’s there!), I set out last Monday on Robin’s First Solo, in which I drove to an undisclosed location called Gearhart, Oregon.
Whoops! The cat’s out of the bag.
Thanks again to my benefactor who was kind and generous enough to offer me his beautiful home when I rudely demanded he do just that.
Robin’s First Solo
Last week was the longest time I’ve spent alone since I was in utero and it was eye-opening. I’ve steadfastly avoided being alone for years and would never have considered taking a trip by myself until now. Suddenly, now was the time.
As I quickly settled into my solitary routine, I was surprised. “Hey, I can do this! Weird!”
I achieved exactly what I set out to do each day, until Friday. Friday marked the turn in the book from nuts-and-bolts financial, lawyer selection and fee management aspects of a divorce to the more squishy stuff of co-parenting and how to develop a positive relationship with your ex.
It’s apropos the book is organized in this fashion because that’s how a divorce should look as well: each side is distinct from the other and should remain bifurcated yet equally-tended to.
Finding my pace stymied somewhat and not the dash of the previous three days, I set out for a run/walk/hobble. Being the proud and neurotic new owner of a Fitbit, I’ve become a bit obsessed with how many steps I can log each day.
This obsession was even worse last week, because I was invited to a challenge with a few other folks. You can see people pulling ahead of you and it really messes with your head.
In the end, I came in 3rd with 93,162 steps Monday through Friday last week, while Sue came in first with 101,295. You stick that thing on a paint can shaker or what, Sue? I want to see proof.
One of the challenge members initiated a new one and thus today finds me writing at my stand-up desk and dancing around like an idiot while doing so.
Hey, Sue? I’m coming for you. Watch your back.
There’s a point here. Wait for it…
Robin Makes a Point
So by noon Friday I needed a break. I’d been struggling since early that morning with Chapter 6 but something just wasn’t gelling. I put it aside to complete Chapter 7 and when that was finished it was time for some steps.
Off I went, targeting 6 miles. I headed north on the beach and planned when the Fitbit/asshole on my wrist registered 3 miles, I’d turn around to head back. I’m really good at math!
Along the way I see these guys:
Poor little fuckers.
You could hear them all gasping and praying that the tide would come back in and take them away to safety. I resisted the urge to scrape together my dinner and moved along.
As I made my 180° turn I considered the road less traveled. After all, I’d just seen this view. Was it time for a different scene?
Now heading south, because that’s the way geography works, I noticed a trail leading east through the dunes. I figured I could hop on that and catch a road running parallel to the beach back to town.
That didn’t happen.
After a good deal of meandering, I flagged down a driver who informed me I’d have to either make my way back to town on the highway or return to the beach. I don’t know about you, but running/walking/hobbling on a freeway is not high on my bucket list, seeing as how exercise in such a dangerous location could speed up the kicking.
Perhaps in hindsight Highway 101 would have been the better option.
As I merrily trespassed my way through the highlands looking for a path to the beach, I found myself in a positive and reflective mood. I was happy to be lost and alive and getting more steps than any of those other bitches.
I checked my Fitbit and I had over 13,000 steps already. Ha! I’d show them.
However, I knew it was time to get back. I’d cut into my writing time by more than I had planned and was pretty sure I wasn’t that close to the house yet.
“Where is that god-damned path back to the beach?” I cursed.
“Ah, there it is! I just have to make this leap from the field to the road! It’s not that big a jump – I can totally do this!”
I backed up and took a running jump, a graceful yet elderly gazelle making a mad dash to avoid becoming a lion’s amuse bouche and showing all the younger gazelles she’s still got it.
So do you see what I didn’t?
That’s barbed wire, right at ankle level.
I took that photo after one of the the worst falls of my life, and I’ve had a few.
I think it was the running leap and how low the wire sat but I went down harder than a porn star on his 6th daily dose of Viagra. I slammed into the ground, mostly on my left thigh and shoulder, but also gave my melon a good knock.
My head, not my left boob, you pervs.
Four days later and here’s the leg that caught the wire:
If my friend Susie were here she could have taken that at a more flattering angle – it’s a bit grotesque. Sorry.
The cuts were nothing, mind you. They hurt, but it was the impact of the fall that got me.
My thigh and shoulder swelled up pretty quickly in direct proportion to the shrinking of my ego and feelings of achievement created from the beginning of my trip to that point. Today, I feel as if I were in a pretty bad car accident. Everything hurts.
As I do when I’m feeling reflective and need blog content but don’t feel like dealing with someone else’s problems, I ponder the significance of things that likely have no hidden meaning at all.
What Does it Mean?
My fall was comedy gold: I saw the road and leapt towards it with no doubts in my mind I’d sail over the little gully and be on my way.
That was not to be, and no sooner had my left foot escaped the earth than I was pulled back down to sand and dirt; reality and fear.
I was alone, you see.
I was stunned, for once, into silence.
After I laid on the ground for a while whimpering and catching the wind that had been knocked out of me, I had to accept it:
I was alone, there was nobody coming to rescue me, and I still was a long ways from home.
I gathered myself together and limped towards the beach, and when got there, I sighed.
Gazing down the coastline, I saw I was still at least two miles from where I needed to be. The Fitbit showed I was over 6 miles at this point but rudely hadn’t allotted me any extra steps for my spectacular and deeply meaningful spill.
What else could I do? I had to move forward.
Get back to work.
I noticed the clouds that had been flirting with the day had given up the chase. There was nothing but blue sky, sparking water, and sand.
I put my headphones back on and cranked up the soundtrack to “Hamilton,” my newest obsession. I see many parallels between the character in the musical and myself.
Hamilton is too open with his opinions, he’s reckless, he’s popular, he’s unpopular, he’s loved, he’s despised, and most of all, he writes like he’s “running out of time.”
Running out of time.
I am not throwing away my shot
I am not throwing away my shot
Hey yo, I’m just like my country
I’m young, scrappy, and hungry
And I’m not throwing away my shot
It’s time to take a shot!