You know how some songs remind you of a time or place? You’re immediately transported back to that space, and your heart reacts whether it was a happy moment, a painful memory, a sad time or a joyous occasion. When Too Close by Next comes on, I’m in a red dress again at junior prom dancing with the cutest guy on the track team.
Incubus’ “Hold Me Down” used to make me cry when living in Israel. It’s even hard to listen to now.
“I’m not afraid to leave this goddamn town. I’ve had enough. God, I won’t look back. I walk awhile along the railroad track. I’m obliged to you babe, but this place you see is trying to hold me down. I want more than you can offer. I am off to anywhere but here. I keep walking so nobody can hold me down.”
It was hard to listen to because I identified with it too much. I had to get out. I’d had enough. I felt obliged, that really is the exact word, but I was being held down, made myself physically ill and nothing but my absolute freedom was going to fix me. I wanted more than he could offer. “I am tired of all the ifs and whens”. I had to go anywhere, but without him.
“It’s too much to live down.” I simply could not beat it. And I don’t think I was meant to. I know there are others who are divorced or considering it who read my blogs. I know there are those who are happily married who are sad because they can’t fathom how it would feel to have to live and be married to someone you aren’t in love with. I believe there are those who read my blog and judge me for being weak, which is stupid because I do that enough for everyone. I know I gave up. I know I chose myself over my commitment. I know I disappointed people. I just couldn’t live one more day with the burden of being held down.
Those who know me really well keep telling me that they see the old Susanna. I feel her. I missed her so much. I used to cry to my ex-husband weekly about how much I missed who I used to be, how much I missed my old life. I was in mourning.
The funeral shroud has come off. My Dad told me he hadn’t heard me this happy in a really long time. Apparently, even my tone is bursting with joy.
I feel like no one could hold me down. I feel unstoppable, and I know these feelings will fade when I encounter failure, embarrassment, uncertainty, shame and other causes of struggle. But right now, I feel like I’m finally coming into my own. I am jobless, sleeping on an air mattress, counting the few dollars I have and living off handouts from my parents.
It’s the happiest I’ve ever been in my whole life.