I pause to catch my breath looking at this photograph for the ninety-ninth time. Most likely only Pataskala will recognize the dress on top. I wore it when I was twenty and haven't seen it with twenty year old eyes since then until now as if I'd pulled it out of a steamer trunk from the attic twenty-six years later. It is that time of year again; I was married January 12 with Christmas nearly eclipsed in the process but not entirely, somehow just remade in a flurry of cookies and tulle.
There are of course two other dresses. The second is appropriate to a second marriage. It's knee length and beaded with cupped sleeves and I was married at noon on a bright day in May so that I could have my last baby and not live in the complications of sin in doing so. Turned out to take awhile to have that last baby (right, I was in my mid-thirties, these things happen) and had the mind set of a corporate ladder climbing wanna be lets get this done and move on already mom to be.
The third is the almighty princess dress. I know it's under there somewhere but appropriately tucked away under the innocence of a time when Pataskala held my hand and cried all the way to the church as mother's are known to do now and then.
So why did I pack up my past and send it away? I packed it up for the same reason I kept it all far past the time when I knew perfectly well Lucia was never going to wear that dress. I kept it to honor those marriages. Some of you will remember the line from that song, 'just because it's over doesn't mean it wasn't beautiful'. Doesn't mean we throw it out as if it never meant a damn thing. We're trashing and dishonoring enough of ourselves by ending it as it is. I packed it all up because inasmuch as I managed to get the third dress out of the garage and into the house I simply could NOT get it into the closet with the other two and therefore condemned myself to tripping over it in the hallway sixteen times a day.
Sticking it in the attic by itself was almost as bad as leaving it in the garage. Getting rid of it and keeping the others even worse. What? I'm going to burn a train wreck and save the others? Not OK. Not who I want to be in this world no matter how much train wreckage I may still be experiencing now and then. NOT how I want to experience myself. This isn't pollyanna shit either. I can come up with a couple of other two mile lists of excuses as to why I ran screaming into the night and the first two lists that stand side by side with why Nomans did what he did but but but that isn't what this post is meant to be only to sort of explain that I need those dresses together. Nomans has his reasons and quite honestly they don't have a damn thing to do with me anymore than my reasons have a damn thing to do with my first two husbands when it comes right down to it. We make our own choices in the end.
You know, all my exes live in Texas.
So I unconsecrated them to get off all the stuff nobody needs to receive, reconsecrated them to put back that which everybody ought to have a bit of, lined the box with a sheet and folded them in one at a time. Not sure which order, probably first in last out and all that sort of thing. I also included two holiday dresses from when we all still lived in the castle, a pair of cream colored suede pants I really did wear to work ten years ago that really did pass for professional dress with a pair of sable colored heels and a slightly darker cream colored silk blouse (and I looked damn fine too), the book I read maybe ten years ago that caused me to start dreaming of another world, a head piece (those would be the colored ribbons) from a renfest costume (it seemed to want to be in the box) and some dried flowers that were the last of this year's garden and made up the last faery circle.
There might have been some other things but those are what stand out as I'm writing this morning. This is grounding. I'm having a hard time remembering to float because I've gotten to the part of the upgrade where my head is full and I'm starting to make those sounds that indicate a full head but are often misunderstood by non-technical people and simply evoke responses that make it worse. I'm smart enough now to know when to back myself off a bit and do a better job of explaining myself in plain English such that I evoke compassion instead of irritation. When those @#$@$# are irritated with me I tend to eat their eye balls. When they are compassionate I find a way to work harder and do better.
Back to the box already.
On the top of the box was a piece of paper with one word.
There were more pictures. Some playful, some downright hilarious and one so beautiful it broke my heart. I am told the words 'so beautiful' were said an awful lot of times. This makes me smile and remember. Yes, so beautiful, so wonderful, so perfect and so right. It doesn't matter what happens with these things going forward it only matters that they've landed in the perfect place.
All matters of the heart such as these should be so lucky to land in Shangri la.
One large step forward for Alecto and something else I just can't put my finger on this morning.
Isn't it beautiful though? Every single one of my marriages was and is beautiful. Time is a construct, remember? I'm in another part of the continum now but that other part isn't reaching out to tear at my flesh the way it used to; not quite so much anymore.