After a two-day emotional meltdown last week and taking the weekend to nurture the effects, I called up my neighbour yesterday for some womanly energy and understanding…
My neighbour is a perky, active, adventurous and independent 64 year old woman, 15 years my senior, with whom I have shared many glasses of wine over conversations about disappointed lovers, single-parenting, dreams, spirituality and neighbourhood gossip. Her name is Danielle, but she’s known as ‘Mammy’ (and no, she’s not black). It’s a French-Canadian term of endearment for an older woman. My visits to her home remind me of my childhood Sunday visits with my grandmother, but better.
I’ve known Mammy for about 10 years. And during that time, we have shared much about our lives. She knows of my accomplishments, struggles, disappointments, and romantic encounters. She too had been a single parent during her time. Like me, she is single, living on her own and wanting a companionship and more. Unlike me, though, she is a devote Catholic.
She showed up at my door handing me a twenty dollar bill. And with her usual nurturing concern, she allowed me to vent my frustrations at feeling displaced in the wrong city and still not living the life I envision for myself. After years of hard work, both on myself and on my craft, after constant disappointment in dead-brain men, life and finances, I’m now at the edge… and she knows me well enough to know that I’m running out of patience and understanding.
She could hear it in my tone of voice, in my sarcasm, and my words… all of which, were coming from of place of total exasperation rather than entitlement. I don’t know which is worse…. feeling trapped in a life that I’m not feeling for myself, or witnessing my contributions to the awakening, happiness and success of others around me, without return.
Most men I know, both single and married, complain that women don’t know what they want. I, on the other hand, do know what I want. My dilemma is uncovering the right train to board, and in finding the right man to complement me and in making my awakenings come true….
So, Mammy invites me out to her favorite poutine truck on Rideau Street. And if you don’t know what poutine is… it’s french fries with cheese curds, smothered in gravy…. good ol’ Canadian comfort food. We sat at the chip-stand enjoying our treat and listening to a couple of elderly women complain about life… chuckling and hoping to never sound like them.
On the way back home, Mammy tells me that she’ll pray for me, pray for my happiness. However, this time, I said to her that perhaps she shouldn’t as she’s prayed for me numerous times in the past, and things haven’t happened for me. Perhaps a reverse approach is needed, I suggested. She then confessed that she hasn’t REALLY been praying for me, only lip-sinking. Well, I stopped in my tracks, turned to her, and with an astonished tone, said, “You’ve been ‘fake-praying’ for me all these years? No wonder things haven’t happened. I’m telling God on you.” Well, we broke out laughing so hard, she almost pee’d her pants…
I took her arm so she could compose herself, and then we continued our stroll home, giggling at the moment. I love her dearly! She has been the one soul over recent years who has shared in my questioning, struggles, fortitude and despair.
As I shared with her what I saw for my life, I could envision her visiting me on my horse ranch overlooking rolling hills, and us picking up right where we left-off, which made me feel one step closer to that life I designed and desire.