Saturday, April 2, 2011

I Can't Concentrate With That Man in the House

I lived with M at the beginning of my college career. It was awful. I had the Nazi English Professor from hell and worse, I had two of his classes, English Composition 102 and Great World Masterpieces I, back to back. I spent 4 hours every Monday and Wednesday with Dr. Death. I spent the whole weekend writing and writing and rewriting. He expected more from me because I was in both classes. In fact, the last paper I wrote for him was a combination of the final assignments from each class. It was a huge paper and I didn't have so much riding on a paper until I took 3000 level English classes.

I remember sitting on the floor of the study with piles of notes, textbooks, photocopies, and my power notebook. I had the door shut, M was doing whatever, and I was going to write the best paper Dr. Death had ever read. Then M came in.

'Whatcha doing?'

'Writing a term paper.' Hmm, where's my outline?

'What's it about?'

'Beowulf.' Where's my notes?

'That's the poem thing?'

'Hmm? Yeah.' Now I remember, I need to cite this...where'd that book go?

'Is that what you've been reading all week?'

'What? Yes, dear. Have you seen my library book?'

'Why? I thought you read it already.'

'I did. Now I need the book. I've got to cite this and I want to make sure I have everything correct.'

'What's a site? Like building? What does that have to do with anything?'

And so it went, every time I had a cohesive thought, M would ask a really stupid question and my brilliant insight into Old English epic poems would vanish. After an hour I was still on the same choppy paragraph, I lost my outline, and M found my library book but dropped it so I lost all my bookmarks.

I spent the rest of the night in the campus library.

My cousin told me her husband was not interested in any of her activities until it didn't involve him. Then he wanted her undivided attention. My mother told me the only time my father wants to talk is when she's reading. Mom said, 'You can't do your own thing when your husband is home.'

Over the years I have found this to be true. Here's what happens when you're not in love anymore- he senses you withdrawing and he becomes a helpless spoiled brat. He wants supper, he wants sex, your friends are bitches, he makes a mess, he spills Coke on the final copy of your perfectly typed essay, and he takes your wet clothes out of the dryer so he can dry his favorite shirt. He doesn't bother to dry your clothes so you are late to work the next morning because you don't have anything to wear.

Here's what happens when you're in love- he doesn't want you to wash dishes because he wants sex. As you are in the middle of vacuuming he offers to take you out to dinner. The moment you begin sewing a quilt, he suddenly bursts in with a party invitation. When the alarm goes off, you roll out of bed only to feel his arm pull you back because he wants to snuggle. It's very romantic, but you don't have time to pack a lunch.

See? It's the same either way. Nothing gets done.

Men don't seem to have this problem. I have never been able to talk Kevin out of a hunting trip. If he's doing something greasy and automotive, I cannot distract him. I'm not sure if he never makes plans, he makes iron-clad plans, or if I'm simply at the bottom of the totem pole.

I do spells when Kevin isn't home because nothing blows my focus like, 'Why are you burning yellow candles and walking in a circle?'

I've tried saying, Please don't disturb me right now. But then I hear him open every single drawer and cabinet door as he searches in vain for an item hiding in plain sight. I hear the thumps slams, and pacing footsteps. Annoyed, I'll say, 'WHAT ARE LOOKING FOR?' And he'll say, 'Nothing, Babe.' Stomp, thump, slam, thump, stomp.


(Surprised) 'Am I bothering you?'

Silence. For all of 30 seconds.

I call to the Guardians of the Watchtower of the East RAIN, RAIN, RAIN, AND MORE RAIN IN THE FORECAST ALL WEEK.

I can't focus on air when the tv is screaming about water.

I try to be a good witch, I swear. I just can't cast a circle, invoke, or charm a damn thing when Kevin is in the house. He's wandered into my circle, knocked over candles, sent stones skittering across the floor and spilled herbs. I think this is why old witches always live alone at the edge of the forest. Everybody thinks she's a mean old hag, but really she had potions to brew.

Don't get me wrong, I love with Kevin and I want to spend the rest of my life with him. I just want some parts of my life to be utterly my own and off limits. Like my altar, which currently has Kevin's tools laying on it. I see sacred space, he sees empty space.

I suppose I'll keep bumbling around him. Does anybody know if cordless drills are ruled by air or earth?


Chrysalis said...

Ummm... you have just described my life. LOL! I have my alter set up in a back room, thinking this would create privacy, but not it creates CURIOSITY! Add a 9 year old, who thinks all magic that isn't Harry Potter is boring, and I am ready to move to the woods!!

Chrysalis said...

altAr... that's altAr, not alter... see I can't even type in this chaos!! LOL!