Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Burning Man & Beyond

I started not to publish this blog because it's a little embarrassing to admit just how ROTTEN things are and just how LOUSY my relationship feels... Leave it to a woman to feel GUILTY for the stupid, thoughtless and dishonest behavior of her HUSBAND...
I can't seem to get past it, and my husband is sick of HEARING IT, and I WILL NOT be silenced.
If you are of the camp that believes HONESTY and TRUST are important, I could use a little emotional support. If you are of the lah de dah so what open relationship/swingers camp I would like to refer you to the HONESTY AND TRUST portion of "what went wrong" as well as the FACT that I have not agreed to a non-monogamous relationship with my husband at this time. I happen to know that when things are shaky at best; it's probably not a good idea to complicate matters.
So here goes:

The American Dream.
What could be more American Dream-like to a woman than piling in with your unschooled kids, a house on wheels & a 15 year her junior husband and taking off to BURNING MAN?

Day ONE: The generator broke. We all came down with atrocious colds.

Day TWO: Sagan did face painting for anyone who would sit. All sick.

Day THREE: Husband comes home at 7am insisting his bike was "stolen" sporting a hickey and plenty of lies. All sick.

Day FOUR: Still no generator, sink & toilet are broke. Wife goes out, finds nothing exciting OR unusual; been there, done that. Realizes husband is no different than ANY sorry lying sack of a man, good for ONE thing and ONE thing only; decides she'd rather be home with the kids; not so secretly hopes husband burns in hell... too bad the only hell is HERE. Wonders why she married "that geeky fat kid" anyway. All sick.

Day FIVE: Dust storms and searing heat. Still no generator.

Day SIX: Climb 10 story tower of Babylon to view Black Rock City. DSCI2211
Mom is glad she brought the kids. Wishes she would have brought them last year. Decides three times is enough pain in one lifetime and is never coming back with present husband. Married one year, pregnant & mistreated the next, cheated on and lied to the next. Feels like it has come full circle. Mama is sickened by papa.

Day SEVEN: Colds are breaking, Go home... Realizes she doesn't really HAVE a home. Wonders what to do next.

So there it is... Burning Man in an instant.

They build it, they celebrate it, then they destroy it. A metaphor for everything we do. We build it up, we dance around it, then we burn it down. Build, dance, burn. Build, dance, burn. Build, dance, burn. Wow... kind of like a phoenix. Being a phoenix is exhausting.

I try to play along. I try to be optimistic, hey, I'm always down for an adventure; yet after the summer of generator blues, eternal camping, unfixed camper parts, looming financial burdens, apathetic, unsatisfied, vacant, scattered husbands, and Burning Man's American Nightmare, Mama is sad and Mama is tired. Mama wonders where all the money goes. Mama doesn't want to live in a trailer park. Mama wonders what papa did all his life that he missed all the important lessons about relationships and ethical behavior.

Mama ponders what she gave up. Mama ponders what she gained. Mama wonders what she will do next...

Mark has a story and he's sticking to it. Mark's story has little to do with what I believe to be true. Trust was trampled. Faith destroyed. Security shattered. Honesty a joke.
Why yes, it is in fact very much what the American Dream wakes up to.
Each and every day. Good Morning, America. Your Dreams? They change every second. Nothing is ever enough for the American. Nothing is ever good enough for the American MAN.

Burning Man was 10 times better than it was last year for me. It was a joy to bring the kids and to share something I love with them. I LOVED the time spent with them. My husband was the same old story of actions and inactions that have hurt me more than once. His "acting out" behavior has often troubled me, no longer surprises me but still hurts me. I believe Burning Man magnifies everything, both real and imagined. It toys with the truth and pours salt in open wounds. It makes you question everything, believe nothing and forces you to step outside your box. EVERY box. It is what you make it. It comes with good, bad, indifferent. But it IS what you make it. We choose that we go to Burning Man. We choose WHO we go with. We choose how we spend our time there. We choose how we live when we return.

Burning Man is a great paradox.

I told Mark before we left, "what's good for the gander, is good for the goose." He said he'd never heard that phrase before. It really goes, "what's good for the goose, is good for the gander." Geese happen to be monogamous, ironically. Seems Mark couldn't care less what I do. That's his take on it anyway. All this loneliness I've carried over the last couple of years was pointless. Seems I could just go out and find someone to talk to, spend time with, and if the whimsy hit me, be physical with. All that time I wanted those things from my HUSBAND. Go figure. All this time I was staring down an empty well. If I continue to go to the empty well, I suppose it serves me right that I die of thirst.

I went to Burning Man and found that I'm happiest living and experiencing life with my kids. WHEREVER that is.

My role as a mother doesn't stop when the sun goes down and the music comes on. When boys are out being boys, moms will still be there being moms. It's not a martyrdom, it's not dramatic, it is the TRUTH. Biology dictates that we behave in certain ways. Does that mean we are slaves to our biology? No. Fortunately we can be a thinking species. I don't believe that we are slaves. We CHOOSE. Some choose more wisely than others. Some let the winds of whimsy choose, which is a choice in it's own. We are animals, but we are also HUMANS. I think we can KEEP the biology that is useful and work AROUND the biology that doesn't serve us. Just because men were put here to inseminate as many females as they can get away with, doesn't mean they SHOULD. In our society, in the modern, overpopulated world, we don't NEED that kind of biology. We NEED two loving and devoted parents to raise our children. We aren't geese, unfortunately. Geese make wonderful parents. Ask me sometime about my ex-husband and non-monogamy. We get along great... NOW.

My American Dream is that I continue to live the way I want to. Maybe "partnered", maybe not. Always a mother. Always searching. Always learning. Always making my choices and always living with the consequences.
How will I live now? Same as every day... one at a time. :-)

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