A grandmother is a mother who has a second chance

Friday, April 17, 2009

A school, a park, a street, a husband

I had a meeting today at the far end of Fremont where I lived when I first moved to California. After the meeting, I drove past our first house just to see it. First of all, it looks pretty bad. But so many memories came flooding back. And an interesting observation.

When we moved to California from Tucson it was because I had married someone (don't even get me started on THAT stupid decision) who got a job out here. The kids were in 8th grade. I was mostly miserable. I had left my family and friends behind in Tucson, was married to a very unpleasant person, my kids were in the "mom-avoidance" phase. And I was sad a great deal of the time.

About a block from out house was a park I'll call Smith Park (an alias). Next to that was Smith School. And when I came home I would usually drive on Smith Street. So, even though it wasn't a name I had even heard before, it became a part of my life. The park became my sanctuary. After dinner, I would often slip out of the house, walk to the park, sit on a swing, and cry my eyes out. I felt so alone and miserable. I would look in the sky and notice that there weren't many stars - they were all blocked out by the light of the city. But there were so many airplanes with three airports in the area. I'd watch the airplanes, watch other people walking in the park, watch the cars drive by - and cry. After an hour or so I would dry my eyes and head back home. It was very cathartic. Neither my husband nor my kids had even noticed my absence - they were all doing their own thing. And it was probably better that way.

We lived in that house for 3 years and while my trips to the park decreased, they never stopped completely. It was the one place I felt safe, not alone, comfortable, and stress-free. And I could cry in peace.

Years later I divorced that guy (still celebrate the date - March 6th!!) and the kids and I moved on. They eventually moved out, I moved across the bay for a few years. And then I met Ed. I was struck by the fact that his last name was the same as my park! Was that a sign? I don't know.

But driving past that park today I realized that now Ed is my safe place, my sanctuary, my place to not be alone. Main difference is that now I don't cry. Maybe the universe was trying to tell me something all those years ago.


catheroo said...

Wow. I love this post.

Thank you for sharing such a difficult time in your life with us. I'm sorry you had to visit that park so often, but I'm glad it was there to give you your own place to just BE.

And yes, the universe works in mysterious ways. How very cool, the way it all turned out for you.

Hugs to you, and to Mr. Smith.

Sandi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
carmella anderson said...

Sandi,I feel so sad to know you went through this bad time. I wanted to cry while reading it.I wish I would have kept tabs on u and your life. most of us only know these things when were older and its over. I wish parents in that era had taught their daughters how to have a tremendous amount of self esteem and courage to get out of bad situations. Its still much to same way unfortunately. I know forgiving is the way to heal.

Fleur de Lisa said...

Sandi, I love this story. It gives us all hope. :) I'm so glad you found your Mr. Smith! The universe works in mysterious but beautiful ways. I have a little card up on my bathroom mirror that says "nothing happens by accident in God's world." I love that.

namaste said...

this is a BEAUTIFUL post, my friend. i am so glad you shared this. this is what makes blogging worthwhile, coming upon a gem like this. the universe is amazing. i totally believe that smith park was a hint about your future with ed. i'm so glad you and he found each other.


Jenni said...

It is funny how that worked out. I'm glad you've found a safe place with Ed too.

If you really want the truth, it wasn't a "mom-avoidance" phase I was going through at that time, rather it was a "he-who-shall-not-be-named" avoidance phase. I spent most of those years trying to be where he was not. It looks like you did the same thing on occasion.

Anonymous said...

we're so glad you found Ed and our family is better for having you in it.

Jack and Darlene

Lori E said...

I love the saying "you are where you are supposed to be" You had to go through the bad spots to reach the good spot. Good thing you recognized it when you saw it.

MMrussianadoption said...

I love this post. it had a happy ending and that is what it is all about isnt it?