When Things Break

The moment you declare you are aggressively saving money, the Universe will throw back its head and laugh. Then make the screen on your 1.5 year old flat screen television go out.

We were not in the market to buy a new tv but we bought one this weekend, much to our savings account’s dismay. This is after having to buy a replacement computer since my old desktop was constantly running its fan and had a virus. And of course, after Christmas shopping which is always like a Joanie Greggains aerobics class for my bank account.

(Does anyone remember Joanie Greggains? I used to work out to her show on tv as a kid with my Mom.)

I digress. The point is we’re set back a bit on the savings and January is going to wear a very tight belt. That’s okay. I’m going to be on a strict eating/working out regime anyhow so the belts will be tight all around. I’m trying to have a non-panicked attitude about it. It’s ok! It’s just money. And we’re lucky to be in the position we are, blah, blah, blah, yadda, yadda. Mr. Darcy’s mom sent us a holiday card with 3 wise men on it. She said she’d heard that if you put it above your door you will bring wealth to your home. I stuck it up there immediately. Within 5 minutes it fell down. So I put more tape on it and stuck it up real good because COME ON FINANCIAL SECURITY!

If it falls down again, I’m just going to staple it to the wall.

Besides freaking out about money, I cried a lot this weekend. First, I thought it was because I didn’t like my new haircut. I went in to get the same exact cut as last time since I loved it so much but then she got over-zealous with the scissors and left me with a very short ‘do (even for me!). I’m disappointed since I had my heart set on a certain look. The bright side is my hair grows like weeds so this shouldn’t last more than a couple weeks. I just feel very EXPOSED and my face feels big and long without the bangs and hair over my ears. Oh vanity, you are not becoming.

I wasn’t really crying about my hair even if my sadness over the cut sparked the feelings. I’m still not 100% sure the root of the crying but I’m pretty sure it had something (everything) to do with fear. Just fear about the future, about finances, about the big choices looming before us, about Mr. Darcy potentially proposing to me in the near future. I was talking to my book club friends about that this weekend. I told them how I was never that girl who dreamed of her wedding or planned it in her head as a kid. I never thought I would get married. I never let myself think someone would ever ask me. I was so desperately afraid I’d never be asked that I convinced myself it was something I didn’t need or want or desire. My low self-esteem drove that thought process and I’m still, at 38, trying to come to grips with this notion that someone wants to spend the rest of their life with me. A lot of feelings of unworthiness bubble up. I worry I will fuck it up, that he’ll change his mind, that we’ll hurt each other or worse, lose one another. It’s twisted to think that by avoiding the commitment and the depth of caring I’ll somehow save myself heartache when in reality, it’s no way to live not connected to your own emotions and your heart. To not take the leap and risk it all.

So I am trying to feel the feelings and let Mr. Darcy in. I push away a lot but he persists and I can’t thank him enough for not giving up and for loving me, even when I am a weeping, red-faced girl who doesn’t have the words to explain that I want this and him and our life so badly. I do. I do. I do. I’m hoping the tears made way for new feelings – good ones like hope and trust and love.


22 thoughts on “When Things Break

  1. This is why I don’t understand how people save money. It seems like something always breaks/goes awry. I’m definitely feeling some of the same $-related feelings. January is not going to be fun–and we didn’t even spend that much money for Christmas.
    My car needs new tires, we really need a new couch…sigh.
    I hope you’re reading A Practical Wedding, I think it would help as you embark on your journey as Pre-Engaged Sizzle. 🙂

  2. You and Mr. Darcy are so great together. I’m happy you have eachother. You are going to have an amazing life together, bumps and all.

  3. Sometimes the tears are just a stress reliever. It’s nothing in particular – just your body taking care of itself. Altho I have cried over a bad haircut before. Oh well.

    And future proposal – how exciting! Go for it, and enjoy all the goodness you deserve.

  4. I understand those engagement feelings so, so, so well. Hang in there, lady. It doesn’t surprise me at all that he wants to stick around…you’re pretty freaking awesome. Don’t forget that in the midst of all this.

    P.S. Your Christmas card = awesome. Love it.

  5. I still do the same with Matt in that I’m taken aback that someone wants to be with me. For life. And keeps sticking around. (We’re going on five years now and we’re married and I’m still surprised by this.) I think it has something to do with not thinking we deserve this when in fact, YES WE DO. I try taking things day by day, otherwise the stress is overwhelming.
    Don’t worry about the money. You’l have it saved up again before you know it. This is why it’s good to save – in case you have a bump in the road.
    Lastly, don’t forget you’re a good, awesome person who does deserve all sorts of wonderful.

  6. I’m not familiar with Joanie Greggains, but I used to work out to Jane Fonda with my mom.

    Hang in there with the finances! I know very well (particularly this year) how it is to feel like you’re doing everything you can and then to get waylaid by circumstances again and again.

    As for hair, off or bad haircuts have been a trigger for me too. Maybe you can save a little cash by waiting longer for your next cut. 🙂

  7. Isn’t that always the way? You finally get a cushion in the savings account, and BAM the bathtub starts leaking or the A/C blows up. It’s worse as a homeowner, but the benefit is is that’s all ours to fix (or ignore!) as we choose.
    I am SO SO happy for you and Mr. Darcy. I wasn’t the girl who dreamed about the wedding either, so we just did something small (11 people) on the beach. Then we had a fun BBQ a couple of months later to celebrate with about 50 friends family (“party” is MUCH cheaper and lower stress than “reception”). If we had to do it again, we’d elope, because even small the wedding was a lot of work. It’s okay to go against the grain 🙂

  8. Mr. Darcy is a keeper. I love that he treats you and your many emotions with respect, well-deserved respect. Just remind yourself that in the long-run, these few extra months it takes to save for a home will mean nothing. You’ll get *there*, I know you will!

  9. I’m starting the week weepy. Your honesty about crying you shared your feelings and it makes me ok to share mine. Thank you. I have no xmas shopping done and NO $$ . Hard b/c I have kids. Now I’m whining… You are more than worthy for Mr. Darcy. Much more.

  10. I feel the same way a lot of the time, only no Mr Darcy in my life. It’s only recently I have been trying to work out and work on these issues of where that feeling comes from. But I can look at you from reading your blog, not even knowing you in person, and say with certainty that you deserve to be happy and have the wonderful marriage and future children with Mr D!

    And I hate worrying about money, especially this time of year, but I’m always in the same boat that everything seems to break when I can least afford to fix it.

  11. Ugh. Spending money on stuff is the most annoying when it’s not planned, isn’t it? But things always do seem to take care of themselves that way, even if it feels like a ding we (and our bank accounts) can’t take at the time.

    When we’re talking about ourselves, though, our flawed and yet simultaneously perfectly good selves, break is just the beginning of breakthrough. And sort of like the things, we’ll end up okay.


  12. Aw, honey, I felt the same way. After a series of heartbreaks and then a catastrophically bad breakup of a 4+ year relationship, I had pretty much stopped believing that marriaeg was in the cards for me. I was not ever one of those girls who dreamed about my wedding either, I kinda stopped being able to envision it, actually. And then I met Mike — and we’re married now, but right aroudn 2 years we had some serious bumps in the road that made me convinced we weren’t going to make it, I felt like I’d screwed things up royally, made him change his mind about me, etc. But we stuck it out and worked through it and now we’re 2 months into marriage, and it is just so much fun that I”m not sure what took us so long. 🙂

    Tears are good though – cleansing…

  13. I bet your hair is so cute anyway…I would love to see it.

    It always seem like there is more money going out that staying in, while trying to save. Such a drag. It is always hard to not over spend during this time of the year as it is. Hope the wise men over the door help!

    Merry Christmas!

  14. That last little bit, about thinking you’d never get married and convincing yourself you didn’t want to, yada yada yada – it was like a punch in the gut because HELLO THAT IS ME. And I’ve just recently realized it, and I’m trying to come to terms with it and convince myself that maybe I do want to get married someday and maybe someone will be able to love me. I’m rambling and crying but… thank you. Nice not to feel so alone.

  15. um, so ok. i grew up in san francisco, so yes, i know the greggains. i saw her once in macy’s downtown. lots of bleach, pony tail and tanning time that one.

    sorry about the do – it needs some washing and it will settle and all will be well. you are not as old as me, but just to cheer ou up, let me say that, at 45, i know am crying and sobbing and everything makes me sad or reminds me of something that makes me sad or where somehow an animal might die.

    i never thought i would get married. then i did. now i am almost a year wed. it is hard. i have a stepson now, and there are some issues in terms of some previously undiagnosed learning disabilities, asperger’s. i have a family and suddenly it is very different than i thought it was and yet i thought i would never have one. i got an IUD this last week and i may have to kill myself because it is killing me form the inside out. my blood pressure is suddenly (literally) dangerously high. my awesome and cute hubby, who worked and supported and raised his son his whole life, got laid off right after we got engaged. he is back in school, and his unemployment runs out in like 3 weeks. we may have to start eating the pets.

    in spite of all this, i am loved. and i am lovable (although i doubt this frequently and worry constantly). it is waaaay more work than i thought and we agree on much less than i thought, cause, you know, i thought we talked about all the “stuff”.

    but it is still good. sometimes even great. i think you know what i mean.

    and as dumb and embarrassing as it is, i really like having my ring (it’s my grandparents) and even though the only thing i wish i hadn’t done was change my name at all (hyphenating is dumb but i was swept away by love in a moment of weakness).


    enjoy your new TV. 🙂 please do not watch joannie greggains on it.

  16. I hate to tell you this, but when you own a home, unless it’s brand new, crap breaks or needs replacing ALL THE TIME! Meaning, think of the TV breaking as training for your future… I’m staring at a kitchen full of appliances that are old and I swear I can hear them ticking like little time bombs. I know if I try to replace them slowly, one by one (no, we cannot afford to buy them all at once) when I see a great sale, as soon as the new is installed, one of the old ones will commit suicide immediately. That’s just how it goes down. Or the dog will have an issue and we’ll have a huge vet bill. Or my car needs new tires. On and on it goes… It’s just life and we try to have a sense of humor about it. Not to mention we hardly remember what eating out feels like… Oh, well, we just chuckle and give the very expensive dog many puppy kisses.

    Since you and Mr. Darcy seem to have great senses of humor and love to laugh together, I’m sure you will find a way to do the same.

  17. As usual, I relate. I’ve been with a wonderful man for almost two years who makes me happier than I’ve ever been in my entire life and yet, I find it so hard to believe that someone so amazing could and does love ME. It’s easy for me to tell you that you completely deserve Mr. Darcy’s love and all the happiness in the world because for you, I truly believe it! It shouldn’t be so hard for me to believe it for myself, but I’m trying. Work in progress 🙂

  18. Wish I could hug you right now. I bet your hair looks cute and you’re just scrutinizing it because that’s what we girls do. I freak out almost EVERY time I get a cut. Mr. W thinks I’m nuts.

    If you need someone to dole out pre-engagement compassion to you, I’d be happy to oblige. I had similar moments of terror and tears. Be warned—they might last right on into the newlywed phase. 🙂 But they’ll be balance with immense joy, too, so it all works out.

    I think maybe you should burn some sage by your wallet and say a little prosperity chant. Although maybe the wise men card will do the trick!

  19. I’ve been saving this post (and about 20 others of yours) to comment on because I love it so much. I haven’t been commenting, but do know that I read every single post, usually several times :>, and I save so many of them in my “favorites” – because you have a way with words, and because your open heart can sometimes act as a mirror for me to see what the heck is going on in mine. Big xo’s to you.

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