It Was Twelve Years Ago

Twelve years ago this week, give or take, I packed a bag and walked out on my husband. I almost couldn’t find a place to stay but eventually stayed in a hotel for a week.

We  had decided to separate the week before and I had an apartment to go to although it wasn’t ready (hence the hotel).

But what made me pack a bag and walk out at 10 pm on a Friday evening was that I came home to a furious man that, in the midst of our argument, called me a fucking cunt.

He was never very kind to me. He called me chubsie ubsie throughout our relationship .  I practically exercised myself to death to be a size 4. He found something else to be unhappy about with me when I reached that “goal”.

I finally found the strength to leave and was getting my ducks in a row to make that happen. Having a well paying job smoothed the fears. (Those without the financial means to leave but do  it anyway are my heroes.)

Calling me a fucking cunt effectively  rent our marriage in two. As if the other slights weren’t enough, that phrase drove home that my husband, a man I loved, had no respect for me.

It was the one thing that kept me from caving and going back to him each time he asked me to come home. (Later on there was more to keep me away but those things were icing on the divorce cake.)

Today I saw this article on Twitter by Glennon Doyle Melton and it gave me the bravery to come out and say loudly that if any man ever calls you a cunt – RUN AWAY. It is not a word that can be said with a wink and a nod. It is not a word that IMO can be embraced by women and taken back from men. It is a word that should be eradicated from our collective vocabulary. And men that use it need to be schooled in its hurtful disrespect of women.

Beauty Queen

Two weeks ago I went to a networking meeting. I went in my standard work clothes attire, which is basically a suit consisting of a jacket, a pair of slacks, and a blouse. The pants were black as were my shoes, but my shirt was striped with green and gold and purple and my jacket was a very fine stripe of cream and green.

But this isn’t about my clothes.

What it’s about is that after the meeting, a young man came up to me and said that he didn’t mean to stare at me during our meeting but had to tell me that I was a beauty queen. He went on to tell me that everything about me from my hair, to my  face, to my clothes, to my jewelry were altogether wonderful and that I was very beautiful.

My immediate  response is really quite sad. Because my response was essentially that nobody in 55 years has ever said that to me. (My mother reminds me that she tells me that I’m beautiful but understands that it’s not quite the same.) I’ve certainly never had a man (that I can recall) ever speak so eloquently about me in that regard.

When a friend, who was standing there at the time, heard this she couldn’t believe it . So I told her that I was always the smart girl not the pretty girl.

In any case,  I have been really quite thrilled with the idea that someone thought I was a beauty queen and beautiful and altogether stylin’.

It’s had me smiling ever since. It’s not enough to live on, but pretty damned close.